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Free Lunch
Madison
Recent Activity
The mandate is an obviously pro-insurer solution to a problem that would arise for insurers if they did not have a mandate but were no longer allowed to engage in some of their other methods of punishing slackers who refuse to buy insurance. It is rational for a young man (in particular) whose employer does not subsidize any of his health coverage to go without coverage. Sure, he is insuring himself, but if he has few assets and no responsibilities, it is a rational choice. A 26-year-old man is very unlikely to come anywhere close to losing money on that bet. A woman in the same group isn't much worse off. I've had an executive from a health insurance company tell me that he will publicly become a huge fan of single-payer the day he retires.
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Count, I would love to be able to argue that the second amendment allows me to legally kill all confidence men and fraudsters and get a bonus for any con man who made more than a million bucks last year. Speaking of con men, isn't Governor Scott a felon? Didn't he rip off this country for about a billion bucks? In other news, I went to a wonderful Catholic wedding that had a priest who didn't seem to like his bishop and the entire event was infused with Bach. Life can be good.
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As a Wisconsinite, I don't want to talk about how hopelessly crazed the GOP has become. Maybe I'll be settled down by Wednesday. I wonder if that is the largest instrument that Bach has ever been played on.
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Scotland has oil. England may not agree. If Scotland gets its way completely about allocation of oil, it becomes Norway West. Small country. Lots of oil. Great social programs.
Toggle Commented Jan 12, 2012 on Scotland, the brave? at Obsidian Wings
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The courts have completely made a hash of probable cause and automobiles and every explanation they make for getting further from real warrant requirements is more convoluted and silly. Only "national security" contains more absurd excuses for ignoring the Fourth Amendment. "The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized." This is simple legal writing. It doesn't make exceptions for young males of non-European heritage, the most common victims of Fourth Amendment shortcuts. It doesn't say carriages are exempt or out-buildings on the farm. It doesn't say the cops get to keep anything they have searched and seized for their own departmental use. It is straightforward and clear. The Supreme Court should say, "Hey, we screwed up in Katz. Privacy is privacy. Wherever you are you do expect a reasonable level of privacy. If you are engaged in ongoing criminal activity, the police have a right to obtain a warrant, backed by reasonable cause, to monitor almost everything you do, but they do not get to do anything other than casual surveillance on the street without that warrant. Your car is one of your effects that is secure from unwarranted searches and seizures. Dogs cannot be used without a warrant, particularly since the evidence is clear that police engage in discriminatory behavior in the way they use dogs and the dogs are not particularly reliable. Oh, finally, you cannot seize any goods from anyone who has been accused until they are convicted and you have shown in the trial that those goods are a direct result of the criminal activity, and even then, if you seize the goods, the law enforcement department cannot get any benefit from that seizure." If the police have a problem getting warrants quickly, then the governmental units responsible have to make certain there are judges available at all times to review the probable cause and issue warrants, but time, no matter how much it is of the essence, cannot be used as an excuse to throw the Fourth Amendment away.
Toggle Commented Dec 29, 2011 on Focusing On The Wrong Thing at Obsidian Wings
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Another possible concern, following on Adrian's comment, is that Huntsman doesn't want it enough to "say anything, do anything" to get it. Even though Romney has almost the same resume as Huntsman, he is fighting harder for it, even to the point of abandoning reality much faster than Huntsman has been to appeal to GOP "conservatives".
Toggle Commented Dec 26, 2011 on what about huntsman? at Obsidian Wings
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Romney started rich and made himself much richer by: 1. Buy a company. 2. Fire hundreds or thousands. 3. Sell the company for profit before people realize that the company does not have enough employees to keep going and keep competitive. My apologies to the very rich who are so arrogant and clueless that they have the gall to compare themselves to those who actually are struggling. I feel so bad for their inability to have any human compassion. I suspect that helps them sleep at night.
Toggle Commented Dec 22, 2011 on where's the love? at Obsidian Wings
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I thought the Japanese had already found a way to absorb Christmas into their culture. Just let them enjoy the Japanese version and then, when you move to the US, let them enjoy the entire cultural overload. I'm not sure how you will be able to prepare them for the potlatch that starts on Black Friday.
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Yes, we should be able to trust the government to do the job right, but it is clear that it has not done so. The best solution, to the extent that there ever will be one, is to have an ombudsman's office that is responsible for reviewing classified documents and "improperly" leaked documents with the duty to correct the classification level and to punish those in government who are misclassifying for personal gain or to protect someone from embarrassment. Sometimes that works. Sometimes not. Unfortunately there's never a guarantee, but aside from NGOs like Wikileaks, the only alternative is an active policing from within the government.
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It appears to me that it's time to strip Murdoch of his citizenship.
Toggle Commented Nov 29, 2010 on Sarah Palin and the Father of Lies at Obsidian Wings
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Many years ago, the Wall Street Journal had an article about the cost of competition in health care in a mid-sized city. Apparently two hospitals are much more expensive for all involved. Competition does not save money when the people paying the bills are not the people using the services and many prices are related to high-fixed-cost items.
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Even Christie has said that they need improved transit capability to NYC. His concern was that NJ would be on the hook for cost overruns (which makes sense since New Jersey controls the project). He complained, after he pulled the plug, that NYS and NYC weren't paying anything for this marvelous opportunity to get more taxes from NJ workers. He seems certain that there would be overruns (see name of state responsible for managing the project). We hardly need mention that the not-very Old Meadowlands Stadium is not yet paid for, but has been leveled. In a rational country, MTA, PANYNJ, TBTA(?) and NJT (am I missing any NYC transit? CT?) would all be part of one sensibly-run transportation authority, but this is the United States, so we just limp along from crisis to crisis and tell each other that this is the best of all best possible countries.
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If, for some foolish reason, we actually have a free market in water, I want to make certain that all of the executives are held criminally responsible for any cholera epidemics or other public health disasters. Of course we should make our current sewage district officials responsible for treating the water so hormones and other biochemicals do not end up in public waterways.
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What Gary K said. My excuse is that I was involved in a poor discussion about philosophy, not attempting to write a novel.
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I've been to Reading Terminal Market and to operas, but it never occurred to me that anyone would combine the two wonderful ideas. It may beat peanut butter and chocolate. Cheers to all of the babies. Earl Warren? Really? Now he's an icon of the right? If he said anything like that, he had a fence a mile high around it.
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Option C works, but only to win. Ask the British and Afrikaners how it worked during the Boer Wars and what the results were afterward.
Toggle Commented Jun 24, 2010 on Why Is There Never an Option "C"? at Obsidian Wings
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About a decade ago, our family toured the Pentagon and found what could only be called a shrine to the most insolent general ever, Douglas MacArthur. I hope the shrine is gone and that this reminds them who runs the show, for better or worse.
Toggle Commented Jun 24, 2010 on McChrystal out, Petraeus In at Obsidian Wings
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Bigots always look for cover to excuse their bigotry.
Toggle Commented Jun 14, 2010 on His Accent Sounded Fine to Me at Obsidian Wings
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The House documents today seem to show that Halliburton was objecting to BP's irresponsible behavior, but that may have been because they wanted to have a few more billing days. As for BP's dividend, fine, let them send it to London after they make a $20 billion deposit with a trustee who is allowed to pay claims with it.
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They need some alternative to penalty kicks for the final game. Agreed. Removing players seems to work well in ice hockey. I see no reason it could not work in soccer. It could be that the overtimes should be only 10 or 15 minutes and each team loses a player after each overtime period. I'm not sure why FIFA appear to be opposed to golden goals, the rules aren't set up in a way that benefits the first team to touch the ball.
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I was startled to realize last time I ran across the song Jes quotes that the lyrics can be sung to the music of "Ring of Fire". What other tune would you sing it to?
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Rev. Raniero Cantalamessa is my nominee for April Fool, a day late. Yahoo/AP has the sad tale of self-pity, how the poor Roman Catholic Church is being treated just like Jews in Europe.
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Rated 3 death-skulls by the American Heart Association All the best food is. I once made the "Enchanted Broccoli Forest" from Molly Katzen's recipe book of the same name. It was very good. I still prefer the foods that the AMA warns me against.
Toggle Commented Mar 26, 2010 on Secrets That Shouldn't Be at Obsidian Wings
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But watch out for Teabaggers. My car got keyed for having an Obama bumper sticker. Too bad. At least you aren't the poor guy in Nashville who had a crazed Harry Weisiger drive into his car because he had an Obama bumper sticker. I also live near a Penzey's and find that it's sometimes too easy to try new spices to from them. I'm particularly fond of their Chicago Steak Seasoning. So far, no disappointments.
Toggle Commented Mar 26, 2010 on Secrets That Shouldn't Be at Obsidian Wings
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I hear they are even more troublesome than cats. Way more troublesome, and they cost more, but the psychic payback is much greater.
Toggle Commented Jan 18, 2010 on Open Thread: Baek-Il Edition at Obsidian Wings
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