Tuesday, November 25, 2003

Excuse me?

Would you like a side order of sneering bias with your news?

The Senate passed the GOP-sponsored Medicare prescription thing 54-44, after jumping through a boatload of procedural hurdles thrown up by a panicked Tom Daschle, horrified at the prospect of the GOP getting credit for what has been a traditionally Democratic goal. In a report on the bill (written before the vote), MSNBC analyst Tom Curry tossed in this little tidbit:

What has generally been overlooked in the commentary on the bill is that it stands usual Republican income-related politics on its head: it treats best those parts of the elderly population who are poor, while it imposes new burdens on upper-income retirees by requiring them to pay more for their Medicare Part B coverage, which pays for visits to doctorsí offices and other non-hospital services.

The implication is that the GOP favors goodies for the rich, at the expense of the poor, which is not the case. Curry is playing the class-warfare card in an attempt to smear the Republicans, because the GOP cannot POSSIBLY have the interests of the poor in mind when crafting any legislation. </sarcasm>

posted at 08:38 AM | permalink | Comments (1)

A bit of history. When Medicare/Medicaid were originally set up, the Democrats were proposing a plan for old people, regadless of income and the Republicans countered with a plan for poor people, regardless of age. Wilbur Mills saw that he could combine the two and (add a third plan helping hospitals). That's how we got our current system.

That pattern, Democrats proposing a unversal program, Republicans proposing something just for the poor is a very common one.

posted by Jim Miller on November 26, 2003 05:01 AM

Monday, November 24, 2003

Whither Nuclear Power?

Michael Gersh has a fascinating post on the eco-left's greatest victory (and possibly its greatest defeat)—Germany's renunciation of nuclear power generation. Along among the industrialized nations, Germany has decided that it will not continue operating nuclear power plants; they have closed their first one, and are committed to decommisioning the remaining plants by 2020. Gersh points out that the German people are beginning to reevaluate their views on atomic energy, and the green's desire to eliminate nukes is going to create a conflict with their desire to curb air pollution. He then ties in the problems with excessive litigation of the US's Endangered Species Act, and finishes with a riff about the Global Warming debate.

Read Gersh's whole post; it's definitely worth the effort.

posted at 10:17 AM | permalink | Comments (0)

Bush wows the EuroLeft

AlphaPatriot links to a couple of articles, one in the Telegraph and the other in the Washington Times, that reveal that Bush's speech went over very well in Britain. The Telegraph piece cites reviews of the speech by the Guardian and the Independent; both papers are reflexively (and vociferously) anti-Bush, yet both were impressed by the speech Bush gave last Wednesday.

AlphaPatriot has a couple other links in his post; check it out.

(Link courtesy of Reflections in D Minor.)

posted at 10:05 AM | permalink | Comments (0)

Compulsory Gun Ownership

Instapundit links to this Washington Post article about Geuda Springs, KS, where the city council recently passed a law requiring residents to own a gun. He mentions Kennesaw, GA, which has a similar law, but he neglects to mention what was the most ambitious gun ownership bill ever introduced in the US, although it never managed to gain enough support for a vote.

In 2001, Fred Maslack (R-Poultney), a member of the Verrmont state assembly, introduced a bill (H.760) that would require every Vermont resident over the age of 18 who did not own a gun to register with the state. If that person was eligible for military service and chose not to own a firearm, he or she would pay a $500 fee for the privelege of not owning a gun. Members of law enforcement agencies and the armed forces were to be exempted from the provision. A companion bill (H.763) would have required basic military training to be a prerequisite for graduation from high school (this would ensure that all those gun owners would know how to use them).

I'd love to see Dean's position on the bills. (This article from the Rutland Herald has a lot of details on the issue, but doesn't mention the then-governor's reaction to the proposal). How far is he willing to push his support of the issue? Gun rights are terribly unpopular with most of the agitation groups in the Democratic Party. His support would probably drop off the screen if he supported such proposals, but he needs to start moving towards the center for the general election. The time to ask him would be now, before the Democratic Primaries start, rather than after they are decided.

posted at 08:42 AM | permalink | Comments (0)

Sunday, November 23, 2003

Ooooh, that's gonna leave a mark

Xrlq at damnum absque injuria seriously fisks* John Dvorak's seriously stupid PCMagazine column on the "dying" blog wave. A number of bloggers (including Instapundit) have noted the column, and commented on it, but this one is the most scathing, and consequently, the most entertaining to read.

*I HATE verbing, but "fisk" is such a widely recognized, accepted term that I have finally broken down. I will be using the term when it is appropriate, but it doesn't mean that I like its use.

posted at 08:50 AM | permalink | Comments (0)


Dodd Harris has been blogging now for three years, which makes him an old-timer amongst most of the bloggers I read. In fact, I believe he has been doing the blog thing longer than everybody on my links list besides the estimable C. G. Hill, and Chaz is a rarity (How many people have had personal websites since 1996)? In any case, Dodd is the only big blogger I have ever met; we worked together in the early 1990's, back when he was still doing the squid thing. Go wish him a happy blogiversary, and check out his "greatest hits" list, which is chock-full of good stuff.

posted at 05:38 AM | permalink | Comments (1)

Thanks for the nod, Timekeeper. I think you give me too much credit calling me a "big blogger," though. :-)

I didn't realize CG had been on the web that long, but it makes sense. My first personal web site went up a few weeks after I got out of the Navy (1995). The way things were then, that was the impetus for me getting a job as a webmaster right at the end of '95.

So, a few years later when I started my blog, a couple of guys I knew had already been doing it for over a year and I thought I was *behind* the curve. Then, about a year after that (after 9/11), blogging really exploded. Who knew?

posted by Dodd on November 23, 2003 12:05 PM

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