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Who did this?

Who did this?

What would one-party rule look like? If a single political party could run things for at least a generation, could we then look at the results after that time and determine how good or bad those policies were?

With respect to the Presidency of the United States, it’s hard to do that. The party in power changes so often. However, for many large cities, the party in power has been there for 50 years or more (with the occasional 1-term opposition party exception). It’s much easier to make a determination in these cases. And even with a state governor of the opposite party, mayors do have enough power to minimize the governor’s influence.

So who’s been in charge, and how has it worked out? Listen in, and leave your own feedback!

Mentioned links:

Moody’s downgrades Chicago debt to ‘junk’ with negative outlook

Following City, Chicago Public Schools Credit Rating Junked

Mayor of Chicago [Wikipedia]

List of mayors of Detroit [Wikipedia]

List of mayors of Baltimore [Wikipedia]

Los Angeles homelessness rises 12 percent amid slow economic recovery

Mayor of Los Angeles [Wikipedia]

Hogan funds pensions, but nothing more for schools

Baltimore Received $1.8 Billion from Obama’s Stimulus Law

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Filed under: Economics & TaxesEducationPartisanship

Getting it wrong

Getting it wrong

The recent election results in the UK have called into question the accuracy of opinion polling, especially since the polling got the election results so wrong. Is polling a legitimate science, or just some black art? Do people often say one thing and do another? How does the enforcement of politically correct speech skew polling, and why does it always seem to be skewed in one direction?

You’ll hear my thoughts, but don’t forget to let me know your thoughts.

Mentioned links:

Conservative Voters Give Pollsters Politically Correct Answers . . . and Then They Vote

Massive NBC Prediction Fail: Network Wrong as Conservatives Surge to Power

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Filed under: ElectionsMediaPartisanshipPolling

Dan  Price of Gravity Payments

Dan Price of Gravity Payments

CEO Dan Price of Gravity Payments decided to raise the wages of all his employees to a minimum of $70,000, while reducing his almost-$1 million salary down to that same $70,000. The Left love it, the Right hated it. But we don’t know how it will turn out, so it’s too early to celebrate. And if this little microcosm of what some have called “socialism” fails, will we even know? It’s being done in an economy of capitalism all around it, which could mask any problems.

Mr. Price said, “As much as I’m a capitalist, there is nothing in the market that is making me do it.” But let’s take a look at his motivations and his actions, and it doesn’t sound like he understands the meaning of the terms “capitalism” or “market”. Which is not good news for people, like his employees, who are depending on his economic decisions.

Mentioned links:

Seattle boss raises entire company’s minimum wage to $70,000

$70,000 promise brings flood of new clients and job applicants

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Filed under: CapitalismEconomics & TaxesMinimum WageSocialism

How much news is really opinion?

How much news is really opinion?

Another media reporter, Lisa Meyers, has spoken out on the problem she sees in her former profession; journalism. While she may not have al the same issues as Sharyl Attkisson had, her concern is very similar. The media are taking sides.

Some might consider that Fox News is the major culprit, but Sharyl was from CBS and Lisa is from NBC, and both speak primarily to what they experienced themselves. And if you’re peeved at how Fox does news, there’s a way to fix that, which involves building a better “fox-trap”.

I discussed the Indiana Religious Freedom Restoration Act last time, but this time I have a great example of what RFRA is not going to protect. Actual discrimination against people is not covered. Refusal to participate in an event might still be. Two very different things.

Mentioned links:

Lisa Myers: TV journalism deteriorating

Fox News is the most trusted national news channel. And it’s not that close.

Michigan Auto Shop Owner Faces Backlash After Declaring He Won’t Serve Gays

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Filed under: GovernmentMediaReligion

Once hailed, RFRA now considered bigoted.

Once hailed, RFRA now considered bigoted.

Indiana has come under intense fire from the Left for passing a law just like one that Bill Clinton signed in 1993, and was supported by conservative Christian groups, the ACLU, and People for the American Way, among other unlikely allies. More interestingly, it was supported in a huge way by Democrats.

That was then, this is now. What happened in the intervening decades? I explain it in this episode, as well as what RFRA really means. (Hint: it is not open season on gays.)

Mentioned links:

Indiana’s Religious Freedom Restoration Act, Explained

Remember When Democrats Used To Support Religious Freedom?

WHAT YOU SHOULD KNOW ABOUT RELIGIOUS FREEDOM RESTORATION ACTS

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Filed under: Free SpeechGovernmentJudiciaryReligion

liberal-logic-101-1560-500x416Didn’t the recent rules by the FCC guarantee net neutrality for all, forcing Internet Service Providers to treat all traffic equally? No, not really. And the classic example that people use to explain why net neutrality was necessary — the Comcast/Netflix dustup last year — had nothing at all to do with the issue. An explanation in this episode of the podcast.

It’s just another way the government has duped you to get more control over something.

Mentioned links:

An Open Letter Explaining Why I Support The FCC Net Neutrality Rules

Twitter conversation between Tony Bradley and me

Comcast vs. Netflix: Is this really about Net neutrality?

Obamanet’s Regulatory Farrago

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Filed under: Net NeutralityTechnology

Episode 100!

Episode 100!

Well, I made it all the way to episode 100! If you’ve been listening, thanks so much. If you haven’t, might as well start now.

I start out the show with greetings and feedback from listeners. Yes, there are people out there actually listening to this, and I appreciate it very much.

Then we take a trip back to Camelot, as Mark Twain’s character did in “A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court”. In that book, there is a short chapter about … economics. No, really. And it’s trying to teach a lesson that, over a hundred years later, we’re still having to relearn.

Mentioned links:

Hornet Archives (MOD/Tracker music)

A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court, chapter 33 [Project Gutenburg]

10 Nations With the Highest Minimum Wage…and What They Pay For It

This is how the minimum wage is actually hurting workers

Wal-Mart Pay Raise Tops Minimum Wage For Half-Million Employees

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Filed under: Economics & TaxesMinimum Wage

We need to get specific on "violent extremism".

We need to get specific on “violent extremism”.

The Right got upset when the summit was called “Countering Violent Extremism”, not mentioning the very real, global threat we face today; Islamic extremism. What’s in a name? Well, if you won’t call it by name, you run the risk of ignoring the main threat and inflating other, smaller ones. The Administration has done just that.

Do you want a President who didn’t finish his last semester of college, or one that turned a state’s economy around? You can have both, actually.

Mentioned links:

DHS Reports: Greatest Threat Is Domestic Right-Wing Extremism, Not ISIS

DHS intelligence report warns of domestic right-wing terror threat

Scott Walker, college drop-out or kicked-out?

Howard Dean calls Scott Walker “unknowledgeable” over college degree question

Gov. Scott Walker reveals the secrets to Wisconsin’s $1 billion surplus

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Filed under: ElectionsForeign PolicyPartisanshipReligionWar

Q&A on Today’s Supreme Court Case on ObamaCare

Being argued today at the high court is King v Burwell, a lawsuit against ObamaCare (also known in some circles as the Affordable Care Act). This is a set of questions and answers that I imagine many people have about this.

Q: What is this case all about?

A: The crux of the issue is a 4-word phrase inside the massive law; “established by the States”. The subsidies supplied by the IRS, according to the text of the law, were to only go to those who applied for insurance via exchanges “established by the States”. If they used the federal exchange (HealthCare.gov), that is not “established by the States” so the subsidies wouldn’t apply.

That’s according to the plain language of the law, and according to Jonathan Gruber, a major influence in the creation of the law.

What happened was that the IRS gave out subsidies to those without state exchanges anyway. The lawsuit is saying that the government broke the law in doing so.

Q: What case is the government making?

A: That the rest of the law, taken as a whole, makes it clear that withholding subsidies from those who didn’t get their insurance via exchanges “established by the States” was not the intent.

Q: Does it actually say in the law somewhere, specifically, that those people should get subsidies?

A: Not that I’ve read. In fact, those articles I’ve seen that have written in defense of the subsidies (like this article by Robert Schlesinger in USA Today) don’t cite any other text that would buttress that opinion. Rather, they argue about the results if the subsidies were overturned.

To me, that sounds like they’re arguing that a law should say what the implementers want it to say, regardless of what the law itself says. That’s a precedent I don’t think we want to create. For example, if a Republican President vetoes legislation, and a Democratic Congress overrides that veto, is the President free to implement the provisions of the law he or she likes and ignore others? I’d say No, and I think those arguing for the ObamaCare interpretation would agree with me if the parties today were reversed.

The IRS did issue a ruling saying that they would, in fact, give subsidies to those in states without exchanges, but as far as I’m aware, the IRS is not part of the legislative branch.

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Filed under: GovernmentHealth CareJudiciary

Beware of  "free" stuff

Beware of “free” stuff

Seems like the more ObamaCare(tm) is implemented, the less the American people like it. First of all, a liberal, Ivy League university has sent its students into an uproar. They want to #FightTheFee that they’ll be charged for not buying the university’s health insurance. Welcome to the real word of socialism! Lesson 1: You won’t like it when it’s applied to you.

And on a broader scale, the American people in general are souring on the idea. A majority oppose the law now, and I wonder how many of them just took Nancy Pelosi’s word for it when she said that they’d have to pass the law to find out what’s in it. The blue-sky promises have turned to thunderclouds. Maybe folks should understand a law before they support it.

Mentioned links:

Cornell students erupt over health care fee

As Public Sours, ObamaCare Faces An Uncertain Future

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Filed under: Economics & TaxesGovernmentHealth CareSocialism

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