Here's some potentially VERY good economic news that was lost amid the weekend news flurry.  Those…
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Some Potentially VERY Good Economic News

Here's some potentially VERY good economic news that was lost amid the weekend news flurry.  Those with "skin in the game," and who likely possess the best perspective, are betting heavily on an upturn, as highlighted by Friday's Wall Street Journal:

Corporate insiders are buying stock in their own companies at a pact not seen in years, a sign they are betting on a rebound after a coronavirus-induced rout.  More than 2,800 executives and directors have purchased nearly $1.19 billion in company stock since the beginning of March.  That's the third-highest level on both an individual and dollar basis since 1988, according to the Washington Service, which provides data analytics about trading activity by insiders."

Here's why that's important:

Because insiders typically know the…[more]

March 30, 2020 • 11:02 am

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Honest Medicare Reform Impossible So Long as President Refuses to Follow the Law Print
By Ashton Ellis
Tuesday, March 04 2014
If the President and his advisors cannot be trusted to faithfully uphold the Constitution and the laws subject to it – and their track record with ObamaCare shows we should assume they won’t – then the refusal by conservatives in Congress to negotiate with him on Medicare or any other issue is not only justified, it is required.

For all the heated political rhetoric and hard-hitting campaign ads, there is a little-discussed reality that should be remembered – Republicans and Democrats agree that Medicare needs reform.

They also agree that the senior-focused entitlement system should reroute money toward elements that work and reduce funding for those that don’t. And while they disagree on which programs should be promoted or pruned, their biggest difference is over whether to get public support before implementing their reforms.

Simply put, Republicans like Representative Paul Ryan (R-WI) are engaged in a multi-year effort to persuade the public about the merits of free-market reform, while Democrats from President Barack Obama on down seem content to lie, cheat and steal their way to government-run health care. 

The deception engaged in by liberals is chronicled expertly by Jeffrey Anderson for the Weekly Standard. In his article, Anderson explains how the Obama administration is using extra-legal powers to hide the fact that ObamaCare guts the most popular parts of Medicare – and not incidentally, those favored by conservatives such as Ryan – until after Election Day.

The two most egregious examples are the monstrously wasteful Medicare Advantage (MA) “demonstration project” ahead of the 2012 presidential election that infused $8.3 billion into MA instead of letting scheduled cuts go into effect. That move hid the fact that ObamaCare gets some of its funding from a hobbled MA program. More recently, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid announced that MA will take a $200 million hit in 2015 – just after the 2014 midterm elections.

The timing of both the demonstration project and the MA cuts allows Democrats to tell seniors that ObamaCare does no harm to a program whose voluntary enrollment has doubled in the last decade. Once safely reelected, Democrats in Congress can then sit back and either half-heartedly condemn the Obama administration or remain silent. Either way, voters will be lied to since liberals refuse to admit that passage of ObamaCare explicitly and irrevocably changes Medicare as-we-know-it.

This represents several openings for conservatives. First, it changes the debate over Medicare from whether to reform it to how to reform it. For decades, liberals have opposed any attempt to change the program – unless the idea was to expand it – for fear of losing support from seniors who depend on Medicare. Now, Democrats can no longer oppose the idea of reform since their signature domestic policy effectively kills two of Medicare’s four parts. (Medicare’s prescription drug benefit is also on ObamaCare’s chopping block.)

Second, liberals can’t claim public support for their plan. Passing ObamaCare was never discussed in terms of a trade-off with Medicare, and the two costly obfuscations mentioned above prove it. Along with the 30+ delays of ObamaCare, the $8.5 billion spent on hiding cuts to Medicare Advantage shows that liberals can see public support for ObamaCare will evaporate once Americans know exactly how the law is designed to work.

Most important, the procedures used by the Obama administration indicate a complete disregard for constitutional limits on executive power. After more than five years of executive orders and actions that have almost no grounding in the Constitution’s text or history, many Americans may have become desensitized to the workaday regularity of the administration’s lawlessness. Nevertheless, a few brave auditors at the General Accounting Office issued a report saying that the administration had “not established” that the 2012 MA demonstration project had met “the criteria set forth” in law.

In short, the Obama administration’s refusal to operate within constitutional limits is the greatest strike against its legitimacy, regardless of the merits of a particular policy. If the President and his advisors cannot be trusted to faithfully uphold the Constitution and the laws subject to it – and their track record with ObamaCare shows we should assume they won’t – then the refusal by conservatives in Congress to negotiate with him on Medicare or any other issue is not only justified, it is required.

Fair-minded people can disagree over whether and how to best provide a social safety net, but no person of goodwill – or fit for political office – can tolerate a governing strategy that intentionally misrepresents what a law does in order to entrench it before anyone notices. 

Question of the Week   
Which one of the following pandemics caused the largest number of deaths in the 20th Century alone?
More Questions
Quote of the Day   
 
"To characterize Biden's response to the most serious and immediately pressing issue of our time as a series of featherweight banalities would be an insult to the oeuvre of Rupert Holmes.Biden has called for - imagine this! - 'a decisive public-health response.'Biden proposes to respond decisively with a combination of platitudes ('restoring trust, credibility, and common purpose'), wishful thinking…[more]
 
 
—Kevin D. Williamson, National Review
— Kevin D. Williamson, National Review
 
Liberty Poll   

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