Cap-n-Trade is Dead – Hopefully

One of the best things I’ve read all day

Carbon rationing is dead on Capitol Hill. The Democratic leadership in the Senate has concluded that they cannot round up enough votes to pass a cap-and-trade carbon rationing bill that aims to cut the emissions of greenhouse gases …

Now that’s good news, but whenever you’re dealing with politicians, there’s always some bad news to go along with it.

… in the face of the catastrophic Gulf oil spill, congressional leaders feel that they must be seen as doing something about energy. And if that something provides members of Congress an opportunity to hand out federal pork to their friends, that’s a bonus.

The whole article is a worthwhile read, and I recommend it. The conclusion of the article is fantastic. Unfortunately, the politicians that need to understand the reality of forcing renewable energy aren’t likely to read it.

Ultimately, the top-down imposition of a renewable energy standard now being considered by Congress is a stupid and costly way to cut greenhouse gas emissions; will destroy more jobs than it creates; is just another wasteful subsidy showered on depopulating rural communities; will do nothing for the chimerical pursuit of energy independence; and will, in fact, increase energy prices to consumers.

Right on. Read the article, Forcing Consumers to Buy Renewable Energy at Reason Magazine.



Government, Free Speech and Voting

I read a very interesting opinion piece today by Todd Henderson of the University of Chicago Law School regarding the Citizen’s United case. I highly suggest reading the entire piece, it is very well written.

At the very beginning of the article, Mr. Henderson makes a great statement:

… we should view extensions of government activity under a presumption of error, especially where there is no evidence of a market failure …

I was hooked after that, and I took the time to read through the rest of the piece. Mr. Henderson makes a number of excellent points and I find that I agree with him all around.

The quote stood out to me for more areas than just speech. Consider the massive expansion of government that is likely to be voted on this weekend. Actually, it may not be voted on, it may just be “Deemed to Pass” (Google that) instead of requiring the House to actually vote.

Why wouldn’t the House want to actually vote on the Health Care bill? Mostly because the bill is very unpopular, and many current representatives are nervous about the people in their districts at home removing them from office. If that’s the case, why are you voting for the bill in the first place.

Last time I checked, the US is a Representative Democracy. We elect people to serve in Congress and vote on our behalf for the things we believe in. If the Heath Care Takeover bill is not wanted by the people, then why is it being pushed for so hard?

Going back to one of Mr.  Henderson’s best points – “we should view extensions government activity under a presumption of error”.

Agreed.


Government Run Health Care

What is this all About?

Many people believe that a government run health care system will provide medical care to millions of people. Unfortunately, that is not what this is all about. The bills that are being discussed are about providing health insurance. Insurance does not equal health care.

Medicare Drug Benefits
Research by the Heritage Foundation

I’m sure that you’ve heard of Medicare. Medicare is a federally run program that provides health insurance to a large number of people that wouldn’t otherwise have insurance. Medicare pays hospitals, doctors, etc., a portion of the costs for medical treatment for covered individuals. In most cases, the payment from the government is in no way related to costs associated with providing those services.

You will also hear people talking about the government run system ensuring that people who need emergency treatment will be able to get it. That’s partially true. Anyone that is need of emergency medical assistance will already receive treatment if they go to an emergency room. There are already laws on the books that require hospitals to provide treatment, regardless of the patient’s ability to pay. So the new government run plan would have the same benefits, because the benefit already exists.

What Else do I Need to Know?

The U.S. spends over $2.4 trillion on health care (nearly 17% of GDP), and the government accounts for almost one-half of all health care spending. Premiums continue to rise for private insurance. Costs for health care continue to spiral out of control. A large percentage of employers only offer one type of insurance, usually with considerable costs for the employer and the employee.

The various plans and bills that are being circulated around the halls in Washington are not good. The choices you will no longer have, will be far worse then your health coverage today. Many employers will stop offering the health insurance you’re used to having if a government option was available.

You’ll still be paying for your insurance, which again, is not related to health care. You simply won’t have the options you had before. Add in the fact you will no longer be the primary decision maker regarding your health care, and it seems obvious that this is a Bad Idea(TM).

Understand that the cost projections coming from Congress and the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) involve a lot of smoke, mirrors, tricks, and gimmicks. You can’t count on the group that wants to take your money to give you an accurate accounting of what it will cost.

What Other Options do we Have?

Lead the Way
Lead the Way

Instead of a new program that is even larger than Medicare, our Representatives should:

  • Create legislation to give families more control over their insurance and care.
  • Make health insurance portable, so you don’t lose your coverage when you change jobs.
  • Reform the tax system to provide the same tax benefits and incentives for all insurance purchasers – Employers and self employed should be able to deduct their costs.
  • Reduce / Reform the legal system to decrease malpractice and liability claims in all medical professions and industry.
  • Allow the customers of health care determine what they will spend for a procedure. Put the control back in the hands of the end consumer. Let the market work to drive competition and prices.

How can I be Heard?

The Tea Party Patriots have put together an impressive list of things you can do to be heard and get the word out. You can use this form to record your answers and the number of calls you made.

House Energy and Commerce Committee

Call the House Energy and Commerce Committee members [List (pdf)].  Let the committee members know how you feel about the bill and the prospect of government run health care. Tell them not to pass the government run health care bill out of committee.

According to Tea Party Patriots sources, all of the Republicans will be voting against the legislation already so you may choose to focus on the Democrats. However, you may wan to remember how a number of Republicans voted on Cap and Trade – let them know you’re out there too.

Blue Dog Democrats

Blue Dog CoalitionThe Democratic Blue Dog Coalition is a group of currently 52 moderate and conservative Democratic Party members of the United States House of Representatives. The Blue Dogs promote, among other things, fiscal conservatism and accountability. The Blue Dog Coalition is often involved in finding a compromise between liberal and conservative positions. Blue Dogs are an important swing vote on spending bills and as a result have gained influence in Congress out of proportion to their numbers.

You can find the Blue Dog Democrats on this list (pdf). Call each of them and let them know how you feel about the tremendous, irresponsible spending that will be required to fund government run health care.

Senate Finance Committee

Call the Senate Finance Committee [List (pdf)] tell them our economy cannot afford another massive government spending bill. We’ve spent enough already and we can not afford the taxes required to “pay” for this new spending bill.

Senators & Representatives

Call your Senators and your Representatives! Tell them as a constituent you are asking them to vote NO on the government take over of Health Care.

Resources

A Thought on Taxes

I think this is an excellent summary of taxes and how taxes are used by the government.

People are tired of wasteful government programs and welfare chiselers, and they’re angry about the constant spiral of taxes and government regulations, arrogant bureaucrats, and public officials who think all of mankind’s problems can be solved by throwing the taxpayers’ dollars at them.

Government can’t tax things like businesses or corporations, it can only tax people. When it says it’s going to ‘make business pay,’ it is really saying it is going to make business help it collect taxes.

We don’t have a trillion-dollar debt because we haven’t taxed enough; we have a trillion-dollar debt because we spend too much.

Our tax policy is engineered by people who view tax as a means of achieving changes in our social structure.

Raising taxes will slow economic growth, reduce production, and destroy future jobs, making it more difficult for those without jobs to find them and more likely that those who now have jobs could lose them.

My friends, history is clear: Lower tax rates mean greater freedom, and whenever we lower the tax rates, our entire nation is better off.

–Ronald Reagan (1911-2004)

Nationwide Tax Day Tea Party :: April 15th, 2009

National Tax Day Tea Party

The Tax Day Tea Party is a national collaborative grassroots effort organized by Smart Girl Politics, Top Conservatives on Twitter, the DontGo Movement and many other online groups/coalitions.

There are Tea Parties being planning for all over the United States on Tax Day. If you’re thinking about attending, you’ll want to be wearing the coolest rally gear you can find. You can even win some sweet party gear to wear to your local rally. If you don’t win, you can always show your support and stimulate the economy by buying some swag from the Tea Party Online Store.

In an effort to build exposure for the Nationwide Tax Day Tea Party events through subscriber lists and e-mail campaigns, we’ve decided to launch a new contest that will give YOU the chance to win all kinds of free Tea Party Gear.

If you’re interested in more information check out the following links:

Be heard. Get involved.