And You Thought I Was Cynical and Paranoid?

July 16, 2009

It is totally clear to me that Obama and Pelosi will spend any amount of money to pass their key legislative initiatives.  In the case of Waxman-Markey, the marginal price per vote turned out to be about $3.5 billion.  But they didn't even blink at paying this.  That is why I fear that some horrible form of health care "reform" may actually pass.  If it does, the marginal cost per vote may be higher, but I don't think our leaders care.

Instapundit, December 21, 2009

CASH FOR CLOTURE: "You can't even dignify this squalid racket as bribery: If I try to buy a cop, I have to use my own money. But, when Harry Reid buys a senator, he uses my money, too. It doesn't "˜border on immoral': it drives straight through the frontier post and heads for the dark heartland of immoral."

Plus, Oh, Nebraska. So what exactly was different about what Rod Blagojevich did?

Plus, keeping track of the bribes.

  • DrTorch

    Unfortunately, for many citizens this is EXACTLY what they think legislators are supposed to be doing.

  • http://www.itsaboutmakingbabies.com/ Brad K.

    I think you have things turned around. This is not some sleazy ploy rolled out to satisfy Obama's need to destroy capitalism and democracy.

    This is how Congress works. It has always been that way. The only change is that now you want to call it "bribes" instead of pork barrel politics.

    The people of Nebraska, Texas, et al, gain some smidgin of relief or crumb of the largesse. So their Senator, to them, isn't exactly a "villain". In a real sense, this is one of the things Senators are expected to achieve for their state - less cost than might have been, new business and cash to their state.

    And ObamaCare? This is likely the most far-reaching item, but not as badly written as some of the cruft that Congress has produced. And, there is still the NAIS to be implemented . . or not. There is the Food Security Administration they want to create under the FDA, to protect Monsanto's interests by regulating everything grown for food for people or animals, assuring Monsanto practices are all that is allowed (a challenge for organic farmers and gardeners). There are the scary caveats interjected into ObamaCare about not using gun ownership to screen health care requests.

    And, wait! The best is yet to come. ObamaCare, when passed, goes to reconciliation. They pick and choose what is in the House or Senate version, and after the fact decide what to leave in and leave out. It seems they may well want to exclude militias, gun owning households, etc. from receiving health care. And Nebraska better hold it's breath about keeping the relief promised in the Senate bill - that could evaporate, come reconciliation time.

    So, how does a state go about impeaching or recalling a Senator or Representative?

  • Dr. T

    Around six weeks ago Intrade (the web site that uses wagers as predictive measures of political and economic outcomes) guesstimated a less than one in twenty chance of Congress passing a health care financing bill in 2009. I commented that Obama and his key socialist supporters in Congress would do whatever it took to get the bill out before Christmas. The Intraders seemed to believe that the Senate would block passage. (With 60 Democrats?!?)

    What is weird is that stock prices climbed immediately after the bill was passed. I expected average stock prices to fall 5-10%. Big businesses sure as hell aren't going to benefit from the bill (except for a few pharmaceutical and health care companies that lobbied for special favors). Small businesses aren't going to benefit because employee benefit costs will rise. Health insurance companies aren't going to do well, because they won't be free to set premiums, assign people to risk pools, or deny coverage. So, with all the downsides, why are stocks rising?

  • Dr. T

    Brad K. must be living in an alternate universe if he thinks that ObamaCare is not the worst bill in history. (It's definitely the wordiest bill in history.) ObamaCare is worse than Social Security and Medicare. It is a fascist bill that gives the federal government extensive control over health care finances throughout the nation, and health care is the largest segment of the private economy. It is almost certain to lead to de facto federal control of the practice of medicine within ten years. And, as Brad K. himself noted, it will probably lead to health care-related coercion of individuals to behave as Nanny State demands. I cannot think of any previous bill with worse consequences for our nation.

  • Dr.T

    Around six weeks ago Intrade (the web site that uses wagers as predictive measures of political and economic outcomes) guesstimated a less than one in twenty chance of Congress passing a health care financing bill in 2009. I commented that Obama and his key socialist supporters in Congress would do whatever it took to get the bill out before Christmas. The Intraders seemed to believe that the Senate would block passage. (With 60 Democrats?!?)

    What is weird is that stock prices climbed immediately after the bill was passed. I expected average stock prices to fall 5-10%. Big businesses sure as hell aren't going to benefit from the bill (except for a few pharmaceutical and health care companies that lobbied for special favors). Small businesses aren't going to benefit because employee benefit costs will rise. Health insurance companies aren't going to do well, because they won't be free to set premiums, assign people to risk pools, or deny coverage. So, with all the downsides, why are stocks rising?

  • ted rado

    I don't understand how some of this nonsense is constitutional. How can Nebraska get a pass on some costs and other states be excluded?

    I have every expectation that the "unintended consequences" of this health care bill will swamp the US economy and generate all sorts of personal bad behavior. People will figure out all the ways to dodge the costs and receive the benefits. The half trillion in Medicare "savings" will never happen. Maybe we should get the Zimbabwe government to run our country. They would probably do a more competent job!

  • Judge Fredd

    "The people of Nebraska, Texas, et al, gain some smidgin of relief or crumb of the largesse. So their Senator, to them, isn’t exactly a “villain”. In a real sense, this is one of the things Senators are expected to achieve for their state – less cost than might have been, new business and cash to their state."

    At least in Louisiana, you got that wrong. Mary Landrieu is persona non grata here because of this debacle. And since she voted yes for this albatross, her brother's run for N.O. mayor will take a hit because of it. A lot of people I know who live in N.O. are going to vote for someone other than Landrieu because Mitch's sister pulled a fast one in Congress, and had the temerity to brag about it.

  • Mesa Econoguy

    This is full-blown extortion. There has to be illegality involved, and there has to be some direct Obama-ACORN-Emanuel-bribery-RICO connection somewhere here…

  • epobirs

    This throwing about of mountains of other people money, the only kind of money Congress deals in, reminds me of the Onion headline when AOL bought Time Warner: Largest transaction ever with pretend internet money.

  • David K

    Hey, look at it this way. We bought it(Through "them") and we're paying for it(Thanks to "them").

    I think DrTorch said it in the most succinct manner possible. People in general pay no attention to what the government is doing in such instances because they think that's what they're supposed to be doing. Despite this, congress insists on voting on such things in the middle of the night on the weekend, subterfuge, if you will, when they really don't have to bother. They could announce it during prime time in the middle of American Idol and the only thing the person watching would say is "Wha? So who got kicked off?"

    This country is screwed because people in general don't understand the processes of our government and what it's "supposed" to be there for. They think the government is there to cure all our woes and who cares anyway as long as I can get a value meal at McDonald's, a 1080p HDTV or a cell phone with full keypad.

    Sometimes I wish I were about 25 years older, blissfully ignorant, playing bingo in a nursing home while this country goes to hell in a hand basket.

  • O Bloody Hell

    > In the case of Waxman-Markey,

    I thought it was spelled "Waxman Malarkey".

    Was I wrong?

    :o D

  • O Bloody Hell

    > It is almost certain to lead to de facto federal control of the practice of medicine within ten years. And, as Brad K. himself noted, it will probably lead to health care-related coercion of individuals to behave as Nanny State demands.

    There is an upside to this.

    Deny enough people health care, tell them that, without it, they're going to die, and you get one hell of a lot of people ready to blow someone's head off.

    Another ten years or so and computer manufacturing tech will have advanced to the point where they really CAN'T outlaw guns. The price of a computer controlled lathe/router setup will have dropped to the point where they will be in too many garages.