Saturday, March 05, 2011
Friday, March 04, 2011
Is Libya Europe's Problem?
[...] "When George W. Bush intervened in Iraq, Europe's ruling elite carried on a sustained campaign of personal hatred and rage against Bush for eight years, knowing full well that without American intervention in the Gulf their economies would be starved for lack of fuel.
"They have been playing that hostile-dependent game for sixty years and America has indulged them like an overprotective mom. For them America it's not Uncle Sam but Uncle Stupid.
"Now that the civilized world claims to be horrified by a grotesque and ranting Col. Khadafi bombing his own people in Libya, Europe is waiting for the United States to put our military lives at risk to protect their southern flank. But Tripoli is only 200 miles from Malta (a member of the EU), Italy is 350 miles, France, Greece and Spain are less than 1,000 miles. That's New York City to Chicago. Sending a dozen jet planes to buzz Col. Khadafi is well within the military capabilities of 300 million prosperous people in Europe. But nobody is talking about it. " (read full article) [emphasis mine]
Medicare Loses 4X $$ as Health Insurers Make
"This is sobering news for the minority of Americans who (for some reason) continue to think that government-run health care is a model of efficiency and cost-effectiveness. Last year, total outlays for Medicare were $509 billion; therefore, Medicare spent nearly 10 percent of its outlays on fraudulent or improper claims. Actually, it may have been even worse than that: The GAO writes that this $48 billion in taxpayer money that went down the drain doesn’t even represent Medicare’s full tally of lost revenue, since it “did not include improper payments in its Part D prescription drug benefit, for which the agency has not yet estimated a total amount.” [...] (full article) [emphasis mine]
Wednesday, March 02, 2011
Raising The Debt Ceiling
"Some say the world will end in fire and some say in ice.
"But in Washington, a lot of people say it will end if we don’t continually raise the debt ceiling.
"The statutory debt limit, or debt ceiling, represents the maximum amount of debt the federal government can carry at any given time. The limit was created in 1917 so that Congress wouldn’t have to vote every time the government wanted to increase the amount of debt (which was becoming a more and more frequent occasion). Since then, the Treasury Department has had the authority to issue new debt up to whatever the limit is to fund government needs. Last year, the limit was raised to $14.3 trillion, an amount that is about to reached.
"As it approaches, Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke has said failing to raise the limit would likely mean the U.S. would default on its debt, creating “real chaos” in place of the fake chaos that’s out there now. Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner has said that failing to raise the limit would be “deeply irresponsible” and and Austan Goolsbee, President Obama’s chief economic adviser, has said that not raising the limit would create “the first default in history caused purely by insanity.”
"Eh, maybe."[...] (more)