Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Leftist Phonies, Harry Reid and Barney Frank on limiting "consenting adults"

Gambling is a challenging issue for politicians because lurking behind the debaters is a man with a suitcase full of cash. He can hire the best spin doctors from Madison Avenue and make massive cash contributions to his favorite pols. So Senator Harry Reid, a Mormon, and Barney Frank, whatever he is, want to reverse Congressional precedent and "re-legalize" internet gambling. Sadly, their favorite argument, posited by Barney "freedom for consenting adults (and page boys)" Frank is a twisted half truth that no honest liberal and no Republican should be caught dead defending.

First, "consenting adults" assumes that the internet gambler will be well, consenting. Is the sick addict consenting? No more than a young intern is consenting when Frank has him in his sights, is a pathological gambler a consenting adult. When the wife discovers "it is all gone" and her sick husband has left she and her children homeless, is she consenting? The Treasurer of Christian County Missouri embezzled over $600,000 from his taxpayers to support his habit. Were they consenting? When the taxpayers of Missouri paid for the prosecution and subsequent incarceration, were they consenting? Missouri, like almost every other State, still barred gambling when Gary Melton was the "big roller". Illinois placed a casino in eye shot of the famous Arch. Gary Melton left over an estimated $700,000 in Illinois. Missourians got the bills.

The most devious argument is the Frank assertion that his interest is letting "adults make a decision" about where they spend their money. Really? So is Frank moving to restrain federal agents who are breaking up home poker matches? Is that the question? Of course it is not. This is the big lie. If you want to gamble with your friends, gamble in Vegas, buy a lottery ticket, gamble at a bingo hall or go to a real live casino, you can find at least one of those outlets within a few miles of every consenting adult in the Country. Frank, an evil genius, is using a reasonable appeal in a false application.

The question for policy makers is not about further restraining gambling, but whether gambling on a large scale, an infinite scale in the case of the internet, something wise to promote or even allow? St. Louisans were shocked, when the brother of a prominent contractor was murdered in a botched robbery attempt. Tyrone Thompson, a former cop and dedicated mentor of troubled youth, was in his car picking up a friend when approached by two young men with guns. It turns out, the thugs needed money. They lost badly in a friendly home dice game and set out on foot to steal their money back. The "house" won, and the victim's family was left holding the bag. But Frank and Reid twist the question from whether more gambling is a desirable public policy goal to a false question about freedom to gamble. We have that freedom. To see how silly this is, the precise argument could be applied allowing consenting adults to do absolutely anything else. Why will he not allow consenting adults to take steroids or methamphetamines, gamble their money on Wall Street or with Madoff? So Mr. Frank, if it is all about leaving consenting adults alone, how about allowing consenting adults to listen to Rush Limbaugh, you bloviating fraud?

Finally, one can see how a libertarian reaches the conclusion that regulating gambling is somehow un-American. even though every single state in the union, save Nevada, banned it in their Constitutions back in the day. Even Republicans can get lost in arguments like "it is just a business, like any other business". But consider a "progressive". The late Senator Paul Simon (D-Illinois) fought gambling endlessly, speaking from the floor of the US Senate about how it corrupts public officials and hurts people. Barney Frank on the other hand, a progressive, who feigns anger with predatory businesses that hurt little people should not enjoy this privilege. He loves progressive taxation and soaking "the rich". Yet what transfer mechanism in the history of man takes more wealth from more of the poor and dimwitted and transfers it to the hands of a wealthy few? When gambling is at issue, the phony progressives bow to the man with the suitcase full of cash.

So we know why Harry Reid wants the bill. Internet gambling will result in huge profits in Vegas (favorite home of the men with cash-filled suitcases), and the Carribean. Casinos and governments, where the casinos are domiciled will make out handsomely. While the phony leftists show that principle matters far less than power and do the dirty work of the men with cash-filled suitcases, the rest of us get stuck with the bills.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Free Lunch Health Care - GOP Recipe

So the latest disappointing news from the Republican leadership in Congress comes from Majority Whip in waiting, Eric Cantor. As Whip, Congressman Cantor carries the message of the caucus. So what does he think about healthcare? Does he support full repeal of Obamacare? Does he share the view of most Americans that the federal government should get back into its Constitutional cage and get out of health care, education, mohair subsidies and a host of other spheres of American life over which they should have zero sway? Nope! Sadly, Congressman Cantor has just affirmed our worst fear. He thinks the federal government should absolutely be regulating health care and guaranteeing Americans "free stuff".

I suppose the Congressman fancies himself a limited government fiscal conservative. Ok. What does that mean? I thought it meant that the federal government should handle basic things like fighting wars and coining money (and please coin way less than you are). Everything else should be left to the "several states".

But hey, at least the Republican leadership wants to give us less free stuff than the Democrats. Here is what Cantor says about Obamacare:

“We too don’t want to accept any insurance company’s denial of someone and coverage for that person because he or she might have a pre-existing condition,” he said. “Likewise we want to make sure that someone of your age has the ability to access affordable care if it’s under your parent’s plan or elsewhere.”

So, the Democrat are promising a chicken in every pot and the Republicans are promising a nice broth. Great message guys. Certainly your pollsters really dug deep for that. Here is a message for you: Resign now! You are incorrigible.

Perhaps we need to spell this out for you: THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT HAS NO ROLE IN PRIVATE HEALTH CARE REGULATION! In order to make this simple, one can find the relevant section of the US Constitution pasted below. Perhaps the American people need to nail copies of it onto all of your doors. One sees lots of duties related to war, treaties and coining money. Giving us free health care just is not there. And please quit peaking into the "penumbras".

To take this illustration further, Cantor tells us he will give us the right to keep our kids on our policies until age 26. Well Congressman, it might interest you to know that all Missourians got that right in January 2008. I know, as I passed the law as a State Legislator. You see, regulating insurance companies is a State matter, not a federal matter. So keep your chicken broth.

So how about pre-existing conditions? To be fair, this is a tougher issue, but nevertheless one best handled by the states. But what are you promising, "no denial because of a pre-existing condition". So what if my car has a pre-existing condition? "Hello Mr. Insurance man. I just wrecked my car. I am on the way to the repair shop. I would like to go ahead and buy a policy now. Congressman Cantor says you cannot deny me. Where should I send my check?"

Congressman, in case you did not notice. All of our health insurance rates are going up because of wacky ideas like that. They violate basic principles of economics so they do not work. They will not work better because you will do less of them.

Congressman, the American people are cynical. They threw you out because when you were in power, you played by the Rove play book. "The Architect" believed that Republicans could hold power by giving stuff away in order to compete with the Democrats for blocks of voters. That is how we got policies like massive education spending to win soccer moms, open boarders to win Mexicans, and Medicare Part D to win seniors. As Americans found our Party looked pretty much like the other Party, and the spending made us broke, that is also how we got thrown out of office. Congressman, not only do we not want your free stuff, our Country cannot afford Socialist light. For the good of your children and mine, quit violating the Constitution or quit your office.

Section 8 - Powers of Congress

The Congress shall have Power To lay and collect Taxes, Duties, Imposts and Excises, to pay the Debts and provide for the common Defence and general Welfare of the United States; but all Duties, Imposts and Excises shall be uniform throughout the United States;

To borrow money on the credit of the United States;

To regulate Commerce with foreign Nations, and among the several States, and with the Indian Tribes;

To establish an uniform Rule of Naturalization, and uniform Laws on the subject of Bankruptcies throughout the United States;

To coin Money, regulate the Value thereof, and of foreign Coin, and fix the Standard of Weights and Measures;

To provide for the Punishment of counterfeiting the Securities and current Coin of the United States;

To establish Post Offices and Post Roads;

To promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts, by securing for limited Times to Authors and Inventors the exclusive Right to their respective Writings and Discoveries;

To constitute Tribunals inferior to the supreme Court;

To define and punish Piracies and Felonies committed on the high Seas, and Offenses against the Law of Nations;

To declare War, grant Letters of Marque and Reprisal, and make Rules concerning Captures on Land and Water;

To raise and support Armies, but no Appropriation of Money to that Use shall be for a longer Term than two Years;

To provide and maintain a Navy;

To make Rules for the Government and Regulation of the land and naval Forces;

To provide for calling forth the Militia to execute the Laws of the Union, suppress Insurrections and repel Invasions;

To provide for organizing, arming, and disciplining, the Militia, and for governing such Part of them as may be employed in the Service of the United States, reserving to the States respectively, the Appointment of the Officers, and the Authority of training the Militia according to the discipline prescribed by Congress;

To exercise exclusive Legislation in all Cases whatsoever, over such District (not exceeding ten Miles square) as may, by Cession of particular States, and the acceptance of Congress, become the Seat of the Government of the United States, and to exercise like Authority over all Places purchased by the Consent of the Legislature of the State in which the Same shall be, for the Erection of Forts, Magazines, Arsenals, dock-Yards, and other needful Buildings; And

To make all Laws which shall be necessary and proper for carrying into Execution the foregoing Powers, and all other Powers vested by this Constitution in the Government of the United States, or in any Department or Officer thereof.