Joe Biden to Dems: “Buck Up”

Click image for video.

If you were hoping for some inspiration words from the VP to explain away the president’s dismal approval ratings, tough. Buck up, little camper.

RCP has some high negs for the Slurpee-lover.

Hope and change = tripled deficit.

To all those on the left complaining about the lack of jobs, the collapsed housing industry, the record-high unemployment, “buck up.”

*UPDATE: adding insult to injury … Dems are polling equally unwell in battleground states.


Just the Facts, Jack: GOP Pushed Insurance Competition in HCR

From last night, on who pushed to purchase health insurance across state lines:

Disgraced Governor-Turned CNN Host Spitzer Credits Liberals for Health Insurance Across State Lines Initiative …

However, it was the Republican Party that fought for the ability for consumers to purchase insurance across state lines. This had long been a policy point offered by the GOP, even at the height of the ObamaCare debate, as shown in a Feb. 25 post on the GOP House Conference blog. Spitzer’s erroneous assertion led to this back-and-forth with Loesch:

LOESCH: That came out in the Patients’ Choice Act.
SPITZER: … why that – why that has not been permitted…
SPITZER: What do you mean? You can’t say no. Facts are facts. The reality is …
LOESCH: Patients’ Choice Act – the fact is the Republicans came out with a Patients’ Choice Act. I have to correct you on that point.
SPITZER: Talking over somebody isn’t going to change the facts. The reality is…
LOESCH: Well, I had to point out the facts.
SPITZER: … the opposition to interstate competition has come from the Republican Party. And that remains to be the case.

A 2009 study showed that health insurance premiums would be reduced by 61 percent forMassachusetts residents if they were allowed to purchase insurance in North Carolina, which, as the GOP conference blog pointed out, is something that could have easily been put into the Democrat’s health care reform legislation. And as Loesch explained, it was House Minority Whip Eric Cantor, R-Va., who was at the forefront of this push – not the “liberal wing of the Democratic Party,” as Spitzer claimed.

“No. That is – that’s – that’s an error. That’s a factual error – Patients’ Choice Act. It came out. Eric Cantor, a number of congressional Republicans came out,” Loesch said. “And that was one of the main talking points, the patients’ bill of rights.”

The bottom line is this: if it had been a point championed by liberals, why was it never included in the health control law or even in the draft?

Workers Assume Larger Share of Health Costs

Think of it as a presidential Labor Day gift. The AP:

Researchers say workers are paying a larger portion of health insurance costs as businesses, trying to ride out the economic downturn, shift more of the burden to their employees.


Total premiums rose a modest 3 percent for family coverage and 5 percent for single employees. But Kaiser Family Foundation CEO Drew Altman said companies passed most of those increases on to workers instead of absorbing them as they usually do.

Oh Noes: Public Sours on Health Control in Time for Midterms

Well this certainly isn’t good:

A new poll shows that public support for health care reform dropped sharply in August — a dagger in Democrats’ hopes that their landmark legislation will help them in November’s midterm.

The Kaiser Health Tracking Poll has support for the bill dropping 7 percentage points in August — down to 43 percent — while opposition rose 10 points to 45 percent. That’s the weakest showing since May — and a far cry from the bump proponents had hoped to see as some of the law’s more consumer-friendly provisions kick in.

For the sake of argument, let’s speculate why this may be happening:
Can’t say I blame those polled.

Teachers’ Bailout Bill Comes at Expense of Food Stamp Program

In the arena of whose needs take precedence, it’s the powerful voting unions who will always win, even over the poor:

The Senate last week passed their own version of the bill, which cuts $12 billion beginning in 2014 from the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance, or “food stamps,” program to help make the measure deficit neutral. Anti-hunger advocates and conservatives alike decried the move.

As I detailed last night, instead of spending the portion of unspent billions from the stimuls passed just last year – which Obama insisted be passed in a hurry to … save teachers’ and other folks’ jobs, Democrats are raiding the food stamp program.

On the $26B EduBailoutJobs Bill

How much sense does this make: a group of folks in Washington, DC, lobbying to the passage of a bill which will put about $50 million in the pocket of said group.

It’s cyclical!

If you said “no sense,” you would be wrong. Apparently to Washington and the teachers’ unions, it makes total sense because that’s exactly what’s happening right now with the bailout midterm buyout union payoff EduJobs bill. Speaker Pelosi is calling the House back to session next week for just this.

Geez, the logic or lack thereof:

Pelosi and other Democrats say the funding will prevent layoffs, stem higher unemployment and contribute to a growing economy.

Hold up – you mean, like the stimulus saved jobs? Have we seriously not learned this lesson? This woman does realize that private sector jobs actually provide the revenue to pay the salaries of the public sector jobs, right? Is that above the admin’s pay grade to ask?

Congress provided states with more than $200 billion in aid as part of last year’s economic stimulus package.

Because they’ve done such a stellar job.

(More clips from “The Cartel.”)

St. Louis city schools lost their accreditation:

The district met only four of the 14 performance standards set by the state, failing in such areas as middle and high school math scores, graduation rates and college placement. To remain provisionally accredited, it would need to meet six of the 14 standards. Full accreditation requires meeting nine of the standards.

If trends hold, 13,000 of the students now enrolled in the district will not graduate, Slay said. Of those who do, only half will take the college entrance ACT test. Of them, less than 12 percent will score at or above the national average.

We don’t have a funding problem. We have a spending problem. More spending does not equal better education. Ever hear of the Kansas City experiment? (via)

For decades critics of the public schools have been saying, “You can’t solve educational problems by throwing money at them.” The education establishment and its supporters have replied, “No one’s ever tried.” In Kansas City they did try. To improve the education of black students and encourage desegregation, a federal judge invited the Kansas City, Missouri, School District to come up with a cost-is-no-object educational plan and ordered local and state taxpayers to find the money to pay for it.

Kansas City spent as much as $11,700 per pupil–more money per pupil, on a cost of living adjusted basis, than any other of the 280 largest districts in the country. The money bought higher teachers’ salaries, 15 new schools, and such amenities as an Olympic-sized swimming pool with an underwater viewing room, television and animation studios, a robotics lab, a 25-acre wildlife sanctuary, a zoo, a model United Nations with simultaneous translation capability, and field trips to Mexico and Senegal. The student-teacher ratio was 12 or 13 to 1, the lowest of any major school district in the country.

The results were dismal. Test scores did not rise; the black-white gap did not diminish; and there was less, not greater, integration.

I get the appeal of running a school like a private business and offering nicer perks to attract better teachers – except that the trend shows a greater emphasis on those perks without the benefit of a proven, consecutive record of solid impact in the classroom.

I also get the idea of wanting to reward those teachers out there who don’t view the front of a class as a bully pulpit or abuse their position by pushing partisanship, and yes, it does turn the stomach that professional athletes make more than educators but that’s due to market demand and if you’ve ever paid for a ticket to a baseball, football, et al. game then you’re one of the guilty who perpetuates it. People deserve what society is willing to pay and for the scales to flip and educators to get Nike deals the hearts of the populace has to change – and government bossiness can’t force it. Also, teachers know the playing field before they choose this profession, so don’t whine about it after the fact.

A big long tangent to basically remark at the coincidence of the timing with this bill, right before midterms and all, a nice big reward for the unions which helped push the ruling class into power – right on the heels of the unions announcing how they’re mobilizing to help the Democrats maintain their majority:

“We are set to launch a robust field plan across the country during the month of August, including advertising and grassroots [sic] events,” said Gerry McEntee, president of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME), in a statement.

Editor’s note after “grassroots” because, yeah. Astrotuf ain’t grassroots, friend.

Sen. Chuck Grassley wonders what on earth happened to the unspent stimulus funds from that $862 perfillion passed just last year:

“To offset this new spending, Democratic leaders could have started with unspent stimulus funds.  About $35 billion of the $100 billion in education aid to states from the stimulus was not spent as of a July 9 report from the Department of Education.

Because THIS new spending has to go to the teachers unions, Grassley! GEEZ KRIZE.

On Medicaid – has anyone possibly thought that the number of Medicaid enrollees increased with THE RISE IN UNEMPLOYMENT?


Gulf Residents Speak Out on Moratorium


“If I was president of the United States, I would not want to be remembered as a president who signed a moratorium that destroys jobs permanently, destroys families and the way they live, and wrecks an economy for years and years to come,” said Thomas Clements of Broussard, La.

Clements and his wife Melissa own Oilfield CNC Machining, a small business that produces metal parts for oilfield equipment. When the six-month moratorium was announced, the Clements’ customers — including their biggest client — canceled all orders. The couple was unable to complete a claim because their clients would not provide copies of the cancellations. Those uncooperative clients understandably didn’t want to damage business relations with BP, the Clements explained.

“We have no income coming in,” Thomas Clements said. “None. Zero.”