Posted in American Exceptionalism, American Independence, American Presidents, big government, Economic Issues, Free Society, government incompetence, Government Spending, Government Stimulus, Job loss, Leadership, Liberty, Patient Safety, Philosophy, Policy Issues, Rule of Law, Uncategorized, Unemployment

Panic Has Led to Government “Cures” That Are Worse than the Disease, History Shows – Foundation for Economic Education

Smoot-Hawley and the New Deal are hardly the only examples of government actions making a panic worse.

Thomas Sowell recounts several instances in which governments turned small problems into major ones by using blunt force—often price controls—to respond to public panic about rising costs of a given commodity.

One of the more famous examples of this is the gasoline crisis of the 1970s, which started when the federal government took a small problem (temporary high costs of gasoline) and turned it into a big one (a national shortage).

As Sowell explains, however, there was not an actual scarcity of gasoline. There was nearly as much gas sold in 1972 as the previous year (95 percent, to be precise).

Similar examples kind be found throughout history, from the grain shortages in Ancient Rome brought about by Diocletian’s “Edict on Maximum Prices” to the mortgage crisis in 2007.

It is no coincidence that crises—foreign wars, terrorist attacks, and economic depressions—have often resulted in vast encroachments of freedom and even given rise to tyrants (from Napoleon to Lenin and beyond). In his book Crisis and Leviathan, the historian and economist Robert Higgs explains how throughout history, crises have been used to expand the administrative state, often by allowing “temporary” measures to be left in place after a crisis has abated (think federal tax withholding during World War II).

Like an economic panic, pandemics incite mass fear, which can lead to flawed and irrational decision making.

https://fee.org/articles/panic-has-led-to-government-cures-that-are-worse-than-the-disease-history-shows/

Posted in American Presidents, big government, Education, Free Society, Government Regulations, Liberty, Philosophy, Policy Issues, Representative Republic vs. Democracy, Rule of Law, U.S. Constitution, Uncategorized

Without Free Speech, All Speech Becomes Government Speech – Foundation for Economic Education

By Barry Brownstein

A new survey conducted in the United States by the Campaign for Free Speech found 51 percent of Americans agreed with this statement: “The First Amendment goes too far in allowing hate speech in modern America and should be updated to reflect the cultural norms of today.” 48 percent thought, and a majority of millennials agreed, “hate speech” should be outlawed. An astonishing 54 percent of millennials thought jail time should be the consequence penalty for hate speech. Hate speech was not defined in the survey.

In a future democratic socialist administration mired in economic collapse, is it a stretch to predict that protection of free speech will continue to wane making criticism of government policies verboten?

If disagreement over the number of genders can’t be tolerated, surely disagreements on a debt jubilee or a wealth tax wouldn’t be tolerated either.

https://fee.org/articles/without-free-speech-all-speech-becomes-government-speech/

Posted in big government, Economic Issues, Free Society, Free-Market, Government Regulations, Government Spending, Income Inequality, Job loss, Liberty, Policy Issues, Tax Policy, Uncategorized

A Case for Less Central Planning & More Individual Economic Freedom

Data analyzed from the Fraser Institute’s Economic Freedom Index makes a solid case for the benefits of more individual economic freedom and less central planning.

Across time and comparing all levels of society, be it communities, States or between countries, those with more economic freedom as measured by the Economic Freedom Index enjoy…

  • Less unemployment
  • Higher incomes
  • Less poverty
  • Less income inequality
  • Less gender inequality
  • Less child labor abuses
Posted in big government, Education, emotional intelligence, Free Society, government incompetence, Liberty, Philosophy, Policy Issues, Progressivism, Uncategorized

Delusion, Doublespeak, and Duplicity: Why Language Matters | Intellectual Takeout

By Jeff Minick

“Language matters.

Let’s start with some quotes from one of the masters of the English

language: George Orwell.

“Political language is designed to make lies sound truthful and murder respectable, and to give an appearance of solidity to pure wind.”

And again: “But if thought corrupts language, language can also corrupt thought.”

From 1984: “War is peace. Freedom is slavery. Ignorance is strength.”

Some males decide they are women…In just a few years, our laws and our society in general have accepted these gender migrations as valid…In short, we accept, or pretend to accept, the proposition that Joe can become Sally.

Except for some who still have eyes to see.

In an interview on feminism and transgenderism, feminist professor and writer Camille Paglia has this to say about the transgendered:

It is certainly ironic how liberals who posture as defenders of science when it comes to global warning… flee all reference to biology when it comes to gender. …

The cold biological truth is that sex changes are impossible. Every single cell of the human body (except for blood) remains coded with one’s birth gender for life.

Back to our man George:
“There was truth and there was untruth, and if you clung to the truth even against the whole world, you were not mad.”

This explains why Paglia in her writings and interviews sounds sane compared to many other progressives.

Some today believe that abortion should be an option up to the moment of birth…Yet these same people don’t blink when they say to a pregnant woman, “When’s your baby due?”

Why don’t they say, “When’s your fetus due?” Or to be more precise: “When does your fetus become a human being?”

To paraphrase Orwell, thought corrupts language and language corrupts thought

If we believe in free speech, but ban speakers from our universities or riot if they appear, then what is free speech?

If we believe in freedom of religion, but then redefine the word as did the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights in 2016 – “‘the phrases “religious liberty” and “religious freedom”’ are nothing but ‘code words for discrimination, intolerance, racism, sexism…’” – then what does our Bill of Rights mean when it guarantees freedom of religion?

Politicians have undermined the language for decades. They call war a “police action.” An “investment in America” translates as “more taxes and more debt.” “Free education” and “free health care” means picking up the tab for some citizens while making slaves of others. “Illegal aliens” become “undocumented immigrants.” “Enhanced interrogation” is code for torture. “Collateral damage” stands for the killing of civilians during wartime. “Progressive politician” sounds wonderful – who is against real progress? – but refers to politicos looking for more power and more control over their fellow citizens.”

https://www.intellectualtakeout.org/article/delusion-doublespeak-and-duplicity-why-language-matters

Posted in Access to healthcare, Accountable Care Organizations, American Presidents, big government, Doctor-Patient Relationship, Economic Issues, Electronic Health Records, Health Insurance, Medical Costs, medical inflation, Medicare, Patient Safety, Policy Issues, Uncategorized

How Medicare Ruined American Healthcare | Medpage Today

Regarding the King-Anderson bill, the forerunner of Medicare, touted by JFK which eventually was defeated in the Senate…

“Edward Annis, MD, spoke eloquently to an empty Garden and to one of the biggest TV audiences of the times.

He explained directly to viewers: “This is not health care insurance … It will put government smack into your hospitals … deciding who gets in, who gets out, what they get, and what they don’t get. … This King-Anderson Bill is a cruel hoax and a delusion. … It will stand between the patient and his doctor. And it will serve as a forerunner of a different system of medicine for all Americans.”

In the late 1990s I asked Dr. Annis what was in the King-Anderson Bill that enabled him to predict in 1962 the insolvency of Medicare and the coming government takeover of healthcare. He replied with a smile, “Cost-plus financing. It was a license to steal.”

Indeed, Medicare ushered in unbridled spending for two decades before approaching insolvency.

But, as predicted by Dr. Annis, the system became insolvent by the early nineties… Hospitals and many providers became addicted to the easy money and abused the system. Why not? Cost-plus meant guaranteed profit.

Faced with Medicare insolvency, the insurance lobby persuaded Hillary Clinton to have secret meetings, without physician input.

Though Hillarycare never became law, the effort brought a sea change. Patients could no longer choose their doctor. Insurance companies now owned the patients. Participation in HMOs rose from 10% to 50%. Your doctor could no longer refer you to the best hospital or consultants if they were “out of network.” The doctor-patient bond had been successfully severed.

Medicare does not mandate who gets into hospitals, but it forces patients to get out by paying for only a limited number of days.

For the past two decades, hospitals have aggressively been buying up medical practices. The goal is to establish accountable care organizations (ACOs). Private practitioners are being elbowed out slowly but surely. General practitioners (GPs) cannot admit a patient to the hospital without “hospitalists” taking over. Hospital surgeons cannot refer to private surgeons, etc. Even the concierge model will be wiped out.

The Medicare approach to ACOs requires three things: 1) electronic medical records, 2) a “Quality Care Protocol,” and 3) a “Protocol for the Elimination of Non-Compliant Physicians.”

This is the ideal rationing system.

The computer will eventually dictate all allowed testing and treatments according to a “quality,” or more likely “cheapest way to do it,” protocol. Providers will ration according to the computer or they will fall into the “protocol for elimination of non-compliant physicians.”

In the new system, no one has a doctor. Doctors have a shift. The doctor you see on the morning shift has absolutely no responsibility for you when his/her shift is over or on a day off. A nurse practitioner takes the patient history and physical, further fractionating care. A system like this requires that all doctors are created equal. They are not.

Politicians and bean counters have never understood healthcare delivery. It was used and abused as a political tool.

No one listened to the warning of Dr. Annis. The AMA is often demonized by historians for opposition to Medicare, but it understood healthcare delivery and the destructive nature of cost-plus financing. I blossomed in the Golden Age of Medicine and bear witness to the fall.

Source: How Medicare Ruined American Healthcare | Medpage Today