Tuesday, July 02, 2013

Cruising the Web

The federal student-loan program is just more Washington fuzzy math.

The administration continues to try to
hide the costs of Obamacare.

Before celebrities agree to perform for dictators, don't their agents have a few minutes to google the dictator and see whether such performances are worth the millions they bring in when it comes to the bad publicity? I don't expect someone like J. Lo or Mariah Carey or Beyonce to know about the various dictators they've performed for, but you'd think that someone in their entourage would have the sense to spend 5 minutes on the internet doing a bit of research. What do they pay all those handlers for?

Mark Steyn is fed up with our politicians passing bills that are so chock-full of pork and contradictions that those supporting it have no idea what is in it.
Senator Hoeven doesn’t read legislative. For example, Section 5(b)(1):
Not later than 180 days after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Secretary shall establish a strategy, to be known as the ‘Southern Border Fencing Strategy’ . . .
On the other hand, Section 5(b)(5):
Notwithstanding paragraph (1), nothing in this subsection shall require the Secretary to install fencing . . .
Asked to reconcile these two paragraphs, Senator Hoeven explained that, “when I read through that with my lawyer,” the guy said relax, don’t worry about it. (I paraphrase, but barely.) So Senator Hoeven and 67 other senators went ahead the following day and approved the usual bazillion-page we-have-to-pass-it-to-find-out-what’s-in-it omnibus bill, cooked up in the backrooms, released late on a Friday afternoon and passed in nothing flat after Harry Reid decreed there’s no need for further debate — not that anything recognizable to any genuine legislature as “debate” ever occurs in “the world’s greatest deliberative body.”

Say what you like about George III, but the Tea Act was about tea. The so-called comprehensive immigration reform is so comprehensive it includes special deals for Nevada casinos and the recategorization of the Alaskan fish-processing industry as a “cultural exchange” program, because the more leaping salmon we have the harder it is for Mexicans to get across the Bering Strait. While we’re bringing millions of Undocumented-Americans “out of the shadows,” why don’t we try bringing Washington’s decadent and diseased law-making out of the shadows?

Ronald Bailey explores the policy failures that Obama is proposing in his five-year plan for ecological central planning. Apparently, he hasn't learned from all the failures of central planning that world history has to offer.

Kathleen Sebelius might have failed in getting the NFL to promote Obamacare because the organization realized that this was a political thicket into which it did not want to tread, but HHS has succeeded in corralling librarians to help promote Obamacare. I'm not sure how many of the uninsured will be hanging out in libraries to get the message, but Allahpundit has a good question.
Exit question: If government workers of any and every stripe are really just a free-floating labor force for the feds, ready to be enlisted for whatever policy priority the ruling administration has in mind, how come librarians and mailmen haven’t been coopted to coordinate jobs programs for the unemployed?
The government might be worried about American citizens becoming obese, but now here is another group we have to be concerned about - Gitmo detainees. A few years ago, there were concerns that they were getting overweight so the government ordered treadmills for them to use to exercise and lose weight. But they complained because the machines were made by infidels so the government pulled the machines out and ordered new ones made in the Muslim world.

Kirsten Powers lays into Wendy Davis.
Human-rights movements have traditionally existed to help the voiceless and those without agency gain progressively more rights. Yet in the case of abortion, the voiceless have progressively lost rights at the hands of people who claim to be human-rights crusaders. Abortion-rights leaders have turned the world upside down. They want us to believe that a grown woman is voiceless, that she has less agency than the infant in her womb who relies on her for life. A woman has so little agency, we are told, that she is incapable of getting an abortion before the fifth month of her pregnancy. To suggest she should do so is a “war on women.” It’s an insult to women dressed up as “women’s rights.”

Oops - Moody's reports that Illinois' unfunded pension liabilities was underestimated in 2011 by 65%. That's what happens when officials make pie-in-the-sky forecasts of how much money their investments will bring in. I'm sure such reporting is going to do wonders for the state's credit rating, already the worst in the nation.