“The Great Die-Off” 6

… that never happened.

On the first Earth Day in 1970, environmentalists predicted the direst imaginable consequences, including the possible extinction of the human race, within 30 years.

That is, if we earthlings didn’t obey them and go back to living the life of the savage: “poor, nasty, brutish, and short”.  They didn’t put it that way exactly. But that’s what their wishes would have brought us to.

“Solitary” should also be in that quotation from Thomas Hobbes, but that wouldn’t be the case because the doomsday environmentalists are collectivists to a man and feminist.

Not a single one of their predictions has come true.

Mark Perry of the American Enterprise Institute writes:

In the May 2000 issue of Reason Magazine, award-winning science correspondent Ronald Bailey wrote an excellent article titled Earth Day, Then and Now to provide some historical perspective on the 30th anniversary of Earth Day. In that article, Bailey noted that around the time of the first Earth Day, and in the years following, there was a “torrent of apocalyptic predictions” and many of those predictions were featured in his Reason article. Well, it’s now the 46th anniversary of  Earth Day, and a good time to ask the question again that Bailey asked 16 years ago: How accurate were the predictions made around the time of the first Earth Day in 1970? The answer: “The prophets of doom were not simply wrong, but spectacularly wrong,” according to Bailey. Here are 18 examples of the spectacularly wrong predictions made around 1970 when the “green holy day” (aka Earth Day) started:

1. Harvard biologist George Wald estimated that “civilization will end within 15 or 30 years unless immediate action is taken against problems facing mankind”. 

2. “We are in an environmental crisis which threatens the survival of this nation, and of the world as a suitable place of human habitation,” wrote Washington University biologist Barry Commoner in the Earth Day issue of the scholarly journal Environment.

3. The day after the first Earth Day, the New York Times editorial page warned, “Man must stop pollution and conserve his resources, not merely to enhance existence but to save the race from intolerable deterioration and possible extinction.”

4. “Population will inevitably and completely outstrip whatever small increases in food supplies we make,” Paul Ehrlich confidently declared in the April 1970 Mademoiselle. “The death rate will increase until at least 100-200 million people per year will be starving to death during the next ten years.”

5. “Most of the people who are going to die in the greatest cataclysm in the history of man have already been born,” wrote Paul Ehrlich in a 1969 essay titled “Eco-Catastrophe! “By 1975 some experts feel that food shortages will have escalated the present level of world hunger and starvation into famines of unbelievable proportions. Other experts, more optimistic, think the ultimate food-population collision will not occur until the decade of the 1980s.”

6. Ehrlich sketched out his most alarmist scenario for the 1970 Earth Day issue of The Progressive, assuring readers that between 1980 and 1989, some 4 billion people, including 65 million Americans, would perish in the “Great Die-Off”. 

7. “It is already too late to avoid mass starvation,” declared Denis Hayes, the chief organizer for Earth Day, in the Spring 1970 issue of The Living Wilderness.

8. Peter Gunter, a North Texas State University professor, wrote in 1970, “Demographers agree almost unanimously on the following grim timetable: by 1975 widespread famines will begin in India; these will spread by 1990 to include all of India, Pakistan, China and the Near East, Africa. By the year 2000, or conceivably sooner, South and Central America will exist under famine conditions….By the year 2000, thirty years from now, the entire world, with the exception of Western Europe, North America, and Australia, will be in famine.”

9. In January 1970, Life reported, “Scientists have solid experimental and theoretical evidence to support … the following predictions: In a decade, urban dwellers will have to wear gas masks to survive air pollution … by 1985 air pollution will have reduced the amount of sunlight reaching earth by one half. …”

10. Ecologist Kenneth Watt told Time that, “At the present rate of nitrogen buildup, it’s only a matter of time before light will be filtered out of the atmosphere and none of our land will be usable.”

11. Barry Commoner predicted that decaying organic pollutants would use up all of the oxygen in America’s rivers, causing freshwater fish to suffocate.

12. Paul Ehrlich chimed in, predicting in his 1970 that “air pollution…is certainly going to take hundreds of thousands of lives in the next few years alone”. Ehrlich sketched a scenario in which 200,000 Americans would die in 1973 during “smog disasters” in New York and Los Angeles.

13. Paul Ehrlich warned in the May 1970 issue of Audubon that DDT and other chlorinated hydrocarbons “may have substantially reduced the life expectancy of people born since 1945″. Ehrlich warned that Americans born since 1946 … now had a life expectancy of only 49 years, and he predicted that if current patterns continued this expectancy would reach 42 years by 1980, when it might level out.

14. Ecologist Kenneth Watt declared, “By the year 2000, if present trends continue, we will be using up crude oil at such a rate … that there won’t be any more crude oil. You’ll drive up to the pump and say, `Fill ‘er up, buddy,’ and he’ll say, `I am very sorry, there isn’t any’.”

15. Harrison Brown, a scientist at the National Academy of Sciences, published a chart in Scientific American that looked at metal reserves and estimated the humanity would totally run out of copper shortly after 2000. Lead, zinc, tin, gold, and silver would be gone before 1990.

16. Sen. Gaylord Nelson wrote in Look that, “Dr. S. Dillon Ripley, secretary of the Smithsonian Institute, believes that in 25 years, somewhere between 75 and 80 percent of all the species of living animals will be extinct.”

17. In 1975, Paul Ehrlich predicted that “since more than nine-tenths of the original tropical rainforests will be removed in most areas within the next 30 years or so, it is expected that half of the organisms in these areas will vanish with it”.

18. Kenneth Watt warned about a pending Ice Age in a speech. “The world has been chilling sharply for about twenty years,” he declared. “If present trends continue, the world will be about four degrees colder for the global mean temperature in 1990, but eleven degrees colder in the year 2000. This is about twice what it would take to put us into an ice age.”

The Daily Caller notes just how wrong some of those predictions have turned out to be:

1: “Civilization Will End Within 15 Or 30 Years”

Harvard biologist Dr. George Wald warned shortly before the first Earth Day in 1970 that civilization would soon end “unless immediate action is taken against problems facing mankind”. Three years before his projection, Wald was awarded the Nobel Prize for Physiology or Medicine. Wald was a vocal opponent of the Vietnam War and the nuclear arms race. He even flew to Moscow at one point to advise the leader of the Soviet Union on environmental policy. Despite his assistance to a communist government, civilization still exists. The percentage of Americans who are concerned about environmental threats has fallen as civilization failed to end by environmental catastrophe.

2: “100-200 Million People Per Year Will Be Starving To Death During The Next Ten Years”

Stanford professor Dr. Paul Ehrlich declared in April 1970 that mass starvation was imminent. His dire predictions failed to materialize as the number of people living in poverty has significantly declined and the amount of food per person has steadily increased, despite population growth. The world’s Gross Domestic Product per person has immeasurably grown despite increases in population.

Ehrlich is largely responsible for this view, having co-published The Population Bomb with The Sierra Club in 1968. The book made a number of claims including that millions of humans would starve to death in the 1970s and 1980s, mass famines would sweep England leading to the country’s demise, and that ecological destruction would devastate the planet causing the collapse of civilization.

3: “Population Will Inevitably And Completely Outstrip Whatever Small Increases In Food Supplies We Make”

Paul Ehrlich also made the above claim in 1970, shortly before an agricultural revolution that caused the world’s food supply to rapidly increase.

Ehrlich has consistently failed to revise his predictions when confronted with the fact that they did not occur, stating in 2009 that “perhaps the most serious flaw in The Bomb was that it was much too optimistic about the future”.

4: “Demographers Agree Almost Unanimously … Thirty Years From Now, The Entire World … Will Be In Famine”

Environmentalists in 1970 truly believed in a scientific consensus predicting global famine due to population growth in the developing world, especially in India. …

[But] India, where the famines were supposed to begin, recently became one of the world’s largest exporters of agricultural products and food supply per person in the country has drastically increased in recent years. In fact, the number of people in every country listed by Gunter has risen dramatically since 1970.

5: “In A Decade, Urban Dwellers Will Have To Wear Gas Masks To Survive Air Pollution”

Life magazine stated in January 1970 that scientist had “solid experimental and theoretical evidence” to believe that “in a decade, urban dwellers will have to wear gas masks to survive air pollution … by 1985 air pollution will have reduced the amount of sunlight reaching Earth by one half”.

Despite the prediction, air quality has been improving worldwide, according to the World Health Organization. Air pollution has also sharply declined in industrialized countries.

Carbon dioxide (CO2), the gas environmentalists are worried about today, is odorless, invisible and harmless to humans in normal amounts.

6: “Childbearing [Will Be] A Punishable Crime Against Society, Unless The Parents Hold A Government License”

David Brower, the first executive director of The Sierra Club made the above claim and went on to say that “all potential parents [should be] required to use contraceptive chemicals, the government issuing antidotes to citizens chosen for childbearing”. Brower was also essential in founding Friends of the Earth and the League Of Conservation Voters and much of the modern environmental movement.

Brower believed that most environmental problems were ultimately attributable to new technology that allowed humans to pass natural limits on population size. He famously stated before his death in 2000 that “all technology should be assumed guilty until proven innocent” and repeatedly advocated for mandatory birth control.

Today, the only major government to ever get close to his vision has been China, which ended its one-child policy last October.

7: “By The Year 2000 … There Won’t Be Any More Crude Oil”

On Earth Day in 1970 ecologist Kenneth Watt famously predicted that the world would run out of oil saying, “You’ll drive up to the pump and say, ‘Fill ‘er up, buddy,’ and he’ll say, ‘I am very sorry, there isn’t any’.”

Numerous academics like Watt predicted that American oil production peaked in 1970 and would gradually decline, likely causing a global economic meltdown. However, the successful application of massive hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, caused American oil production to come roaring back and there is currently too much oil on the market.

American oil and natural gas reserves are at their highest levels since 1972 and American oil production in 2014 was 80 percent higher than in 2008 thanks to fracking.

Furthermore, the U.S. now controls the world’s largest untapped oil reserve, the Green River Formation in Colorado. This formation alone contains up to 3 trillion barrels of untapped oil shale, half of which may be recoverable. That’s five and a half times the proven reserves of Saudi Arabia. This single geologic formation could contain more oil than the rest of the world’s proven reserves combined.

We’ll give Mark Perry the last word:

Let’s keep those spectacularly wrong predictions from the first Earth Day 1970 in mind when we’re bombarded [around Earth Day 2016] with media hype, and claims like this from the 2015 Earth Day website:

Scientists warn us that climate change could accelerate beyond our control, threatening our survival and everything we love. We call on you to keep global temperature rise under the unacceptably dangerous level of 2 degrees C, by phasing out carbon pollution to zero. To achieve this, you must urgently forge realistic global, national and local agreements, to rapidly shift our societies and economies to 100% clean energy by 2050. Do this fairly, with support to the most vulnerable among us. Our world is worth saving and now is our moment to act. But to change everything, we need everyone. Join us.

Finally, think about this question, posed by Ronald Bailey in 2000: What will Earth look like when Earth Day 60 rolls around in 2030? Bailey predicts a much cleaner, and much richer future world, with less hunger and malnutrition, less poverty, and longer life expectancy, and with lower mineral and metal prices.

But he makes one final prediction about Earth Day 2030: “There will be a disproportionately influential group of doomsters predicting that the future – and the present – never looked so bleak.”

In other words, the hype, hysteria and spectacularly wrong apocalyptic predictions will continue, promoted by the “environmental grievance hustlers”.

Bernie’s Dream 1

No controversies on our Facebook page are as long and passionate as those concerning health care. The most passionate commenters are those who want a nation-wide central government-run health service. They say that all other “civilized countries” have it and the US is “behind” them in not having it.

But the US does have such a thing – for military veterans.

Two years ago the service was revealed to be scandalously badly managed. Reforms were promised. Is it now a model of what a government-run health service should be?

This is from Investor’s Business Daily:

In the summer of 2014, President Obama promised swift changes to resolve chronic delays and cover-ups at the Veterans Health Administration. Today, veterans are still waiting months to see doctors and the VHA is still doctoring wait times, an audit finds.

The Government Accountability Office tracked 180 newly enrolled veterans to see how quickly they could get in to see a doctor. The results are disturbing.

It found that 120 of these vets waited from 22 to 71 days to see a primary care doctor. Worse, 60 of these vets still hadn’t gotten in to see anyone, and in almost half these cases it was because the VHA didn’t bother to schedule them. Mind you, these are primary care doctors, the first step in getting whatever care these vets need.

The GAO also found that the VHA systematically tries to mask the length of these delays by starting the delay clock from the date vets say they’d like to be seen, instead of when they call to schedule an appointment.

What’s more, “ongoing scheduling errors, such as incorrectly revising preferred dates when rescheduling appointments” — which is to say, VHA incompetence — also served to understate the amount of time veterans waited to see a doctor, the GAO says.

This is the same VHA that was supposed to have been fixed two years ago, in the wake of revelations about chronic delays that in some cases led to veteran deaths, as well as findings that VHA officials had tried to cover up these problems.

In August 2014, Congress overwhelmingly passed a reform bill providing the VHA with $16 billion in extra money. When he signed the bill, Obama called the scandal “outrageous” and promised that his administration was “moving ahead with urgent reforms, including stronger management and leadership and oversight, and we’re instituting a critical culture of accountability.” Obama said the new funds would be used to “hire more doctors and more nurses and staff more clinics”.  He also promised that vets would gain access to private providers outside the VHA through a new “Veterans choice card”.

Since then, Obama has kept none of those promises.

The VHA remains largely unreformed, and almost no one involved in the scandal was fired. The Justice Department couldn’t even bring itself to file charges against two VHA officials who allegedly defrauded the agency of $400,000. The VHA only demoted them.

Last year, an Associated Press investigation found that “the number of patients facing long waits at VHA facilities has not dropped at all” and the number of vets waiting more than 90 days to get an appointment “has nearly doubled”.

Whistleblowers who alerted the public to the original VHA scandal say that wait times are still being manipulated.

“I can promise you that it is still going on at facilities across this country,” one source told USA Today. “I mean, it’s sad because veterans are still getting poor care.”

The “choice card” Obama touted has turned out to be a cruel joke, as the VHA made it difficult for vets to use it in a timely manner, and because the VHA didn’t pay some private doctors and hospitals who took the card. One survey found the VA owed Florida hospitals more than $100 million in unpaid claims, for example.

Obama should be held accountable for his abject failure to fix the VHA as promised. But of course he won’t be, since no one ever holds Obama accountable for anything.

And because everything government runs, it runs badly.

In the meantime, however, the ongoing scandal at the VA should serve as a warning to anyone who thinks socialized medicine is a good idea. The VHA is a showcase of what it’s like when the government runs health care.

Almost all the advocates of “free” – ie. tax funded – medical treatment for everybody, insist that it is a “right”, equal to the “unalienable Rights to Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness” proclaimed in The Declaration of Independence.

But Walter Williams points out that no one can have a right that puts an obligation on someone else:

Here is what presidential aspirant Sen. Bernie Sanders said: “I believe that health care is a right of all people.” President Barack Obama declared that health care “should be a right for every American”. The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops: “Every person has a right to adequate health care.” President Franklin D. Roosevelt, in his January 1944 message to Congress, called for “the right to adequate medical care and the opportunity to achieve and enjoy good health”. And it is not just a health care right that people claim. There are rights to decent housing, good food and a decent job, and for senior citizens, there’s a right to prescription drugs. In a free and moral society, do people have these rights? Let’s look at it.

In the standard historical usage of the term, a “right” is something that exists simultaneously among people. As such, a right imposes no obligation on another. For example, the right to free speech is something we all possess. My right to free speech imposes no obligation upon another except that of noninterference.

Similarly, I have a right to travel freely. Again, that right imposes no obligation upon another except that of noninterference. Contrast those rights to free speech and travel with the supposed rights to medical care and decent housing. Those supposed rights do impose obligations upon others. … If one does not have money to pay for a medical service or decent housing and the government provides it, where do you think the government gets the money? …

Congress does not have any resources of its very own, [so] the only way for Congress to give one American something is to first take it from some other American. In other words, if one person has a right to something he did not earn, it requires another person’s not having a right to something he did earn.

Let’s apply this bogus concept of rights to my right to speak and travel freely. Doing so, in the case of my right to free speech, it might impose obligations on others to supply me with an auditorium, microphone and audience. My right to travel freely might require that others provide me with resources to purchase airplane tickets and hotel accommodations. If I were to demand that others make sacrifices so that I can exercise my free speech and travel rights, I suspect that most Americans would say, “Williams, yes, you have rights to free speech and traveling freely, but I’m not obligated to pay for them!”

As human beings, we all have certain natural rights. Of the rights we possess, we have a right to delegate them to government. For example, we all have a natural right to defend ourselves against predators. Because we possess that right, we can delegate it to government. By contrast, I do not have a right to take one person’s earnings to give to another. Because I have no such right, I cannot delegate it to government.

If I did take your earnings to provide medical services for another, it would rightfully be described and condemned as an act of theft. When government does the same, it’s still theft, albeit legalized theft. …

The bottom line is medical care, housing and decent jobs are not rights at all … they are wishes.

If government is to be a father-like Provider, and everyone who lives in the country it governs is to be its child-like Dependent, that government will need to be totally trustworthy. It will care unstintingly – and equally – for every single one of those whom it feeds, houses, educates and cures. It will never abuse its power by withholding food, shelter, schooling, medical care from any of its charges, or by giving better food, housing, schooling, doctoring to some of them. Nothing less than perfect uniformity will do.

How will it be done? How will all Americans be brought to live in docile uniformity and sweet harmony under the authority of a loving government?

None can say. But they can wish, can’t they? They can dream.

Call it Bernie’s Dream.

Posted under Health, Socialism, United States by Jillian Becker on Thursday, April 21, 2016

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The Democrats’ war on science 1

The “man-made global warming” con is not the first false science racket that the Left has imposed on the citizens of the USA  –  and forced them to pay for.

This video, just published (on September 4, 2015), is titled The Alternative Medicine Racket: How the Feds Fund Quacks.

Which means: how you the tax payers came to fund shamans, mountebanks, and snake-oil salesmen.  

The racket was launched by two members of Congress, both Democrats: Tom Harkin, US Senator from Iowa 1985-2015, and Berkley Bedell, also from Iowa, member of the US House of Representatives 1975-1987.

It’s amazing and depressing to learn how quickly the universities caved to the demand that they should teach magic as if it were respectable medical practice; and how quickly the hospitals let the quacks in to play with seriously ill patients. It happened because of the lavish – and ever increasing – funding by which the voodoo was promoted by the Democratic Party.

Finally, pretend-healing was included in the Affordable Care Act – aka Obamacare. As the video reveals, the “controversial section 2706” of that nefarious piece of legislation – sneaked through Congress and passed by sleight-of-hand – requires that quacks be paid on the same scale as properly qualified doctors.

Health in the market place 10

A group of House Republicans unveiled a 192-page health care plan that fully repeals Obamacare and replaces it with “patient-centered reforms” and “free-market solutions“.

We quote from a report in the Daily Signal:

Lawmakers released the plan Thursday as the GOP-led Congress prepares to attack the Affordable Care Act. Both houses of Congress have already signaled their intentions to repeal Obamacare by a simple majority vote using the reconciliation process — just as the law was passed in 2010.

The new GOP plan, American Health Care Reform Act, was written by Reps. Phil Roe of Tennessee and Austin Scott of Georgia. It has the backing of the Republican Study Committee, a caucus made up of nearly 170 members of the House of Representatives.

Authors of the plan say it’s an “aspirational model” of American health care.

“This is not the perfect bill,” said Roe, who worked as a physician for more than 20 years prior to joining Congress. “We’re open for amendments”.

Highlights of the bill include removing any subsidy assistance, increasing tax benefits, expanding federal funding for state “high-risk pools”, allowing Americans to purchase policies across state lines, reforming medical liability laws, and investing in research for the most common causes of death in the United States. …

While introducing the legislation to a small group of reporters, members of the Republican Study Committee slammed the Affordable Care Act.“Access to a waiting line is not access to health care,” said Rep. Andy Barr, R-Ky. He called Obamacare a “spectacular and breathtaking failure”. 

“American citizens are suffering from the president’s broken promises under the unaffordable Obamacare law,” Scott added. “That’s why today, I am proud to join my colleagues in offering a plan that fully repeals Obamacare while replacing it with a patient-centered, free-market alternative.”

The American Health Care Reform Act covers four broad areas:

1) Encouraging Competition in the Health Care Market. The Republican Study Committee criticized the Affordable Care Act for not offering competition in health care.

“There’s less competition in the health care system than ever before,” Scott said.

The proposed legislation addresses this issue by allowing Americans to purchase health insurance products across state lines. Small businesses also are permitted to merge together to coordinate better rates.

Scott said adding more insurance carriers into the health care market is paramount to providing more competition.

2) Improving Access for Vulnerable Americans. Federal support for state high-risk pools will increase to $25 billion over 10 years.

Under the bill, premiums would be capped at 200 percent of the state’s premium average. Additionally, those with pre-existing conditions can alternate between health insurance markets, provided they maintain “continuous coverage”.

Roe said veterans would be positively impacted and would receive a Veterans Choice Card, providing more health care options.

3) Supporting Medical Breakthroughs. The bill provides funding for an eight-year, $15 billion Medical Breakthrough Fund at the National Institutes of Health to develop cures for the top five causes of death in the United States: heart disease, cancer, strokes, Alzheimer’s, and diabetes. These conditions kill more than 1.5 million people each year. …

4) Reforming Medical Liability Laws. The bill identifies several solutions to the medical liability crisis, which increases health care costs and deters physicians from practicing, according to lawmakers.

All good stuff. But what are the chances that Obama will sign the bill into law?

Touched by the Clintons 2

To our suspicious mindset, the term “non-profit” is a red flag, signaling the presence of sentimental claptrap likely to be covering up a crooked scheme.

When the name Clinton is associated with it, our suspicion turns to certainty.

The Clinton Foundation has spawned many a “non-profit initiative”. One of them – acronym CHAI – allows  the charitable Clintons to take care of the health of the human race. Remember, Bill Clinton feels everybody’s pain.

The Washington Free Beacon reports:

The Clinton Foundation and its major health charity have raked in more than $7 million from the U.S. government in recent years

Those millions are tax dollars of course.

The Clinton Health Access Initiative (CHAI), chaired by Bill Clinton and run by the former president’s long-time associate Ira Magaziner, has received $6,010,898 from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) since 2010. CHAI, the biggest arm of the Clinton family’s charitable efforts, accounting for 60 percent of all spending, received $3,193,500 in fiscal years 2010, 2011, and 2012, according to federal contracts, during Hillary Clinton’s tenure as secretary of state. The organization received an additional $2,817,398 from the CDC in FYs 2013, 2014, and 2015.

The grants, including $200,000 awarded as recently as January, have gone to CHAI’s Global AIDS program, and are filed under “Global Health and Child Survival”.  The CDC is listed as a $1 to $10 million contributor to CHAI, according to its donor list released earlier this month.

Why should a US government agency, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, channel its aid for AIDS through a Clinton charity? 

Why should the UN’s World Health Organization (WHO) – which is on that donor list (which itself rewards perusal) – need to do so?

Or the African Institute of Biomedical Science and Technology? Wouldn’t you expect such an institution to be a recipient of charity rather than a giver of it?

The Boston-based health arm of the Clinton Foundation has come under scrutiny for failing to disclose donations from foreign governments — in violation of a pledge Clinton made to the Obama administration before she assumed office as secretary of state.

A Reuters report found that the [Clinton] health initiative stopped making its annual disclosure in 2010 and that “no complete list of donors to the Clintons’ charities has been published” since. The group only recently published a partial donor list, which its spokesperson Maura Daley told Reuters “made up for” CHAI’s “oversight” of failing to meet the disclosure agreement. …

A mere momentary slip on a busy day.

CHAI received hundreds of millions from foreign nations between 2009 and 2014, including: the United Kingdom ($79.7 million), Australia ($58.6 million), Norway ($38.1 million), Canada ($12.1 million), Ireland ($11.7 million), Sweden ($7.2 million), and New Zealand ($1.2 million).

Why should the governments of the UK, Australia, Norway, Canada, Ireland, Sweden, and New Zealand – all of which have departments responsible for providing foreign aid – channel their aid for AIDS through a Clinton charity? 

The Boston Globe found that foreign donations “sharply accelerated” to CHAI when Hillary Clinton became secretary of state.

“Government grants, nearly all from foreign countries, doubled to $55.9 million in 2013 from $26.7 million in 2010, according to the records,” the report said.

The Clinton Foundation is a money-sponge, soaking up cash from all over the world. Into what buckets is it squeezed out?  

The health initiative broke off into a nonprofit separate from the Clinton Foundation in 2010, though it is still chaired by Bill and Chelsea Clinton.

The charities have remained intertwined. CHAI received a $2 million cash grant from the Clinton Foundation for “Haiti relief,” according to the group’s 2013 tax filing. It received a $4 million cash grant from the foundation for “program service” in 2012.

CHAI’s chief executive officer and vice chairman, Ira Magaziner … a long time associate of the Clintons … was paid $415,000 in salary and consulting fees from the Clinton Foundation in 2013, according to Politico. Bruce Lindsey, Bill Clinton’s longtime lawyer and chairman of the board of the Clinton Foundation, was the highest paid official at CHAI, paid $398,159 in salary and benefits in 2013 as a board member.

Yet –

CHAI’s website says they are a “frugal” charity that focuses on saving lives, rather than “compensating ourselves excessively”. 

So what exactly are the charitable grants provided by CHAI spent on? How does CHAI “save lives”?

Let’s see. In Ethiopia, for instance –

CHAI’s spokesperson, Maura Daley, said that taxpayer funding to her organization is being provided by the U.S. President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR), and distributed through the CDC for AIDS work in Ethiopia. … She said the funding is going towards enrolling hospital CEOs in masters programs for hospital management.

To repeat: the money is “going towards enrolling hospital CEOs in master programs for hospital management”. Wow!

Aside from millions given to the health initiative, the Clinton Foundation itself has received more than $1.4 million in U.S. taxpayer funding from federal agencies and the 2009 stimulus law.

The Clinton Foundation lists several state and federal agencies as financial contributors, including the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

The EPA is listed as contributing between $1,001 and $5,000, as is an agency entitled the “Office of Minority Health and Human Services”. The Free Beacon was unable to determine what this donation referred to, or which federal or state office it came from.

The Department of Health and Human Service’s Office of Minority Health (OMH) was unable to locate any donation to the Clinton Foundation. The Office of Minority Health and Human Services, a state agency in Nebraska that recently changed its name to the Office of Health Disparities and Health Equity, said the donation could not have come from their office because they do no solicit or issue funding.

The EPA did not return request for comment.

State agencies in Arkansas have also given financial contributions to the Clinton Foundation, according to the organization’s website.

The Arkansas Minority Health Commission gave between $1,001 and $5,000. Michael Knox, executive director of the Arkansas Minority Health Commission, told the Free Beacon that the donation was for the Clinton Center’s annual “Head of the Class Bash” in June 2011 that paid for “car seat inspections, immunizations and health screenings, and backpacks with school supplies to the children of Arkansas.”

Car seat inspections? Backpacks with school supplies for children? Why should a state agency, established and funded to deal with health care, pay the Clinton Foundation to pay for immunizations and health screenings? Why should it pay the Clinton Foundation to pay for any of these things?   

The Arkansas Energy Office is also listed as donating between $500,001 and $1 million to the Clinton Foundation, though the contribution actually came from spending authorized by the 2009 stimulus law.

Scott Hardin, director of communications for the Arkansas Economic Development Commission, told the Free Beacon that the Clinton Foundation received nearly $800,000 from his office, through a grant funded by the stimulus.

“The Energy Office distributed more than $50 million in American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) funds a few years ago and the money provided to the Clinton Foundation was part of this effort,” he said.

The grant, amounting to $758,123, was provided to the Clinton Foundation in October 2009, Hardin said.

The funds went to the Clinton Foundation’s Home Energy Affordability Loan (HEAL) program, which aims to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from buildings through “energy-efficiency and monitoring strategies.”

“Monitoring strategies”. Wow again.

The project is listed as creating zero jobs.

So no one is actually doing any monitoring? Or even working out “monitoring strategies”?

The Free Beacon found one case where an agency was listed as a Clinton Foundation contributor, even though it has never donated to the organization.

The Arkansas Department of Human Services is currently listed for a donation between $1,000 and $5,000. However, the state agency never paid the Clinton Foundation, and only helped host a conference at the Clinton Center. The state agency nonetheless received a gift receipt from the Clinton Foundation. …

The Clinton Foundation did receive $1,350 from the U.S. taxpayers, but through another federal agency: the Corporation for National and Community Service.

Amy Webb, director of communications for the Arkansas Department of Human Services, told theFree Beacon that her agency helped the Clinton Foundation host an event honoring AmeriCorps in Little Rock, Ark. last year.

It “helped the Clinton Foundation host an event” – an event to honor AmeriCorps. We repeat because we are trying to get our heads round the extent of the Clintons’ benevolence. This particular donation to help the charitable Clinton Foundation was provided by (among others) a Division of Community Service and Non-profit Support, who received it from the Corporation for National and Community Service. –

“Our Division of Community Service and Non-profit Support, along with other local entities, co-hosted an AmeriCorps 20th Anniversary event at the Clinton Center in September 2014,” she said. “Via a grant, the Corporation for National and Community Service provided our agency with $1,350 to help cover costs associated with that event.”

Webb provided an invoice from the Clinton Foundation detailing the $1,350 charge, which she said was for refreshments.

“The money was not a donation to the Clinton Foundation,” Webb said. “In January, we incorrectly received a ‘gift receipt’ for a donation for the money we used for that event, and we notified the foundation of that error.”

In all, state and federal agencies have contributed between $1,402,187 and $1,414,184 directly to the Clinton Foundation.

Together with the health initiative, taxpayers have contributed roughly $7.4 million to Clinton charities.

Which enroll people for courses; inspect car seats – or would if someone actually did the job; devise monitoring strategies – ditto;  and host events with refreshments bought with taxes.

Truly, the charity of the Clintons knows no bounds. Is it their goodness that brings those tears to your eyes? Or what?

A libertarian view of the state we’re in 2

John Stossel, in his plain-speaking, clear-headed way, deplores Obama’s failed economic policies:

President Obama sure is consistent. His State of the Union address sounded like his other speeches: What I’ve done is great! America is in a much better position. We’ve created a manufacturing sector that’s adding jobs. More oil is produced at home. I cut deficits in half!

Give me a break. The deficit is lower now not because of any prudence on Obama’s part but merely because the $800 billion stimulus spending blowout didn’t continue. All the president does is increase spending: free community college, free Obamaphones, free birth control, etc. Yes, our annual deficit is lower, but it’s still $488 billion! Our $18 trillion national debt increases by $3 million every minute!

Yes, more oil is produced at home, but that’s in spite of the administration. Oil production is down on public land.

Yes, the manufacturing sector added jobs, but that’s mostly because of cheaper natural gas created by fracking, which Obama’s cronies opposed. Also, America is finally recovering from recession. Obama’s policies probably slowed that recovery.

Does the President delude himself when he takes credit for oil production, lower deficits, etc.? Or does he mislead on purpose? I don’t know.

More recently he bragged, “I created the lowest unemployment rate in years.” He created it? He must know it’s “low” only compared to the 10 percent reached during the recession — and because millions have simply given up looking for work. This recovery is the slowest in 70 years.

Then he goes on to propose a very different speech from the one Obama gave last night:

If Obama gave the State of the Union address I’d like to hear, he’d say this:

I heard you, voters, in November when you took control of the Senate away from my party. I get it. I overreached. I was arrogant. I imposed Obamacare on a nation that was deeply divided about it. I ruled through executive orders instead of legislation. I threw money at “green” nonsense.

We’ve cut a bit out there, because at that point he pulled out the biggest bone of contention we have with libertarians like John Stossel: defense. He wants less spent on it – as Obama does – and  we want more spent on it. 

But on: 

I’ve been in government for years now. I know how badly it works. The last thing I should try to do is make it bigger. In fact, with Republicans now in control of Congress, it’s time I worked with them to shrink government. If we shrink it, we might even dig our way out of the debt hole we’re in. Heck, if we just slow the growth of government to 2 percent a year, we’d be in better shape.

But I didn’t even try to accomplish that. I pretended taxing the rich would solve our financial problems. But there aren’t enough rich people to tax.

That’s not what’s wrong with the idea. What’s wrong is the idea of redistribution itself. The right argument is against any form of redistribution by a central agency.

But on again:

I got drunk on the idea of promising voters “free” stuff such as low down-payment mortgages and guaranteed paid family leave. I told them that all good things come from government. That’s nonsense.

We should put an end to all bailouts. Businesses that screw up should accept the consequences, just like ordinary people who spend recklessly. Main Street should never again be forced to rescue Wall Street.

Instead of expanding government control of health care, we should phase it out. That includes Medicare. I know Medicare is popular, but it is unsustainable. Let current retirees receive their benefits as promised, but younger people should pay for their own health care.

People criticize the economic distortion created by welfare, but Medicare and Social Security are almost as bad. Both redistribute money away from the young and struggling toward those of us who have had decades to invest and save up.

To make these challenges a little easier to deal with, let’s make America richer by abolishing most regulations. They strangle opportunity.

The more I think about it, the more Congress and I could transform America for the better just by getting out of America’s way. The state of our union will be truly strong if the state – by which I mean government – is strictly limited.

That we would applaud.

A Democrat crows over tricking the “stupid” American voter 9

… to get the perfectly horrible health care law passed.

For the Left, the end always justifies the means.

See how smug Jonathan Gruber, architect of Obamacare, looks as he shares his  joke about the “stupidity” of the American voter.

Here’s what he says, so you can mull it over:

This bill was written in a tortured way to make sure CBO did not score the mandate as taxes. If CBO scored the mandate as taxes, the bill dies. So it was written to do that. In terms of risk related subsidies, if you had a law which made explicit that healthy people pay in and sick people get money it would not have passed. Lack of transparency is a huge political advantage. And basically, call it the stupidity of the American voter or whatever, but basically that was really, really critical to get the thing to pass.

Daniel Greenfield comments at Front Page:

So an Obamacare architect just admitted that the whole thing was built on a tower of lies and that it is indeed a tax.

As the Supreme Court ruled it is.

The passing of the Obamacare law was also a great leap forward on the road to serfdom.

It needs to be repealed.

When freedom requires tyranny 15

The first – many libertarians would argue, the only – duty of government is to protect the nation from other nations and the individual from other individuals. Its instruments are military might and the rule of law.

That duty includes keeping the nation and the individual safe from infectious disease. The law must isolate persons and animals that could make others sick.

It may be hard to identify the infectiously sick. But to the extent that it can the state must do it, and force the infected into quarantine.

The people can insist that the conditions of the quarantine are pleasant, even luxurious (why not, if luxury can be afforded?), but the quarantine must be as absolute as can be.

Right now, Americans need to be protected from the horrific killer disease Ebola. It is known where it comes from; what its symptoms are; what its gestation period is; how it spreads or could be spread. The countries from which it comes should be quarantined.

To take every necessary protective measure would be to prevent panic, not create it.

Fear of Ebola is perfectly rational. It is fearsome. To do whatever is necessary to contain and cure it is also rational.

It is those who say do nothing and don’t even talk about it who are being emotional and unreasonable. Nothing goes away just because it’s taken no notice of.

This horror exists, it has been brought to the United States, now it must be dealt with forcefully, dictatorially, with high-handed authoritarianism – in the interest of freedom.

Posted under Africa, Commentary, Health, liberty, tyranny, United States by Jillian Becker on Tuesday, October 28, 2014

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The US bombs, heals, feeds ISIS 1

While the US Air Force continues to bomb what it thinks are IS/ISIS/ISIL positions in what was, but may not still be, Syria and Iraq, convoys of trucks bearing life-saving aid in huge supplies donated by the US taxpayer (among others) also continue, trailing unstoppably into enemy territory.

No other air forces seems to be at work there, though to prop up the lie that a huge coalition – including Sunni Arab states – had joined the US in its aerial action against  the Islamic State, the world was treated to a glamor pic of a pretty female Qatari pilot leading a squadron of three bombers on the first day of the venture. Did she drop any bombs? And where has she gone? Will she be back? Without her, Obama and Kerry must seem to be combatting IS/ISIS/ISIL all by themselves (by proxy of course) from the clouds.

They also drop crates of arms and ammunition to whomever finds them down below. Some to the Kurds who are fighting ISIS on the ground – if the Kurds are lucky enough to find them. And one load – at least – whether by accident or intention, to ISIS.

And while the bombing displays admirable militancy on the part of the White House, and the gift of arms to ISIS may have been an accident, the US and Britain and the (abominable) United Nations and possibly the EU are deliberately delivering massive quantities of aid to the Islamic State (IS/ISIS/ISIL).

ISIS crucifies boys; saws off Americans’ and Britons’ heads; stoned a timid young girl to death just recently – her own father among her killers. And still the trucks of aid go trundling in, bringing food and medical supplies to ISIS. Well, ostensibly it’s for “civilians” and “displaced persons”, but ISIS rules the route.

This is our Facebook page summary of an article by Jamie Dettmer in the Daily Beast:

In addition to accidentally airdropping loads of weapons to ISIS, and while U.S. warplanes strike at them, truckloads of U.S. and Western aid is flowing into their territory, assisting IS/ISIS/ISIL to build their caliphate. The food and medical equipment, meant for civilians, is funded by the U.S. Agency for International Development, European donors, and the United Nations. But the aid convoys have to pay off ISIS.

The bribes are disguised and itemized as transportation costs. Aid coordinators say that USAID and other Western government agencies and NGOs actually employ ISIS people on their staffs. “They force people on us. And when a convoy is being prepared, the negotiations go through them. They contact their leaders and a price is worked out.”

The aid itself isn’t carefully monitored. ISIS keeps some of it to feed and treat its fighters. At a minimum, the aid means ISIS doesn’t have to divert cash from its war budget to help feed the local population or the displaced persons.

Last year when there was a polio outbreak in Deir ez-Zor, the World Health Organization worked with ISIS to carry out an immunization campaign. In these ways the West, and in particular the US, is providing support for the Islamic State.

Many aid workers are uncomfortable with what’s happening. “A few months ago we delivered a mobile clinic [to the Islamic State],” says one of them. “A few of us debated the rights and wrongs of this. The clinic was earmarked for the treatment of civilians, but we all know that wounded ISIS fighters could easily be treated as well. So what are we doing here, treating their fighters so they can fight again?”

What makes the picture even more bizarre is that while a lot of aid is going into ISIS-controlled areas, very little is going into Kurdish areas in northeast Syria where the Kurds are now defending Kobani with the support of U.S. warplanes. Last November, tellingly, Syrian Kurds complained that they were not included in the U.N. polio-vaccination campaign.

According to the same source: Jonathan Schanzer, Mideast expert at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, thinks that any aid that reaches the people will  help to keep them contented with ISIS rule. He’s quoted as saying:

I am alarmed that we are providing support for ISIS governance. By doing so we are indemnifying the militants by satisfying the core demands of local people, who could turn on ISIS if they got frustrated.

We see his point, but doubt that there is going to be an uprising against ISIS within the Islamic State any time soon, no matter what the circumstances.

A State Department official is reported to fear that if the aid convoys were to be stopped, there would be an humanitarian crisis for which the West would be blamed. We don’t think fear of blame should be of any concern. Why are all these sentimental Western policy makers and executives so afraid of being blamed? It is blame by Muslims that they particularly fear. What is withholding aid from an enemy state compared to what the Muslims of ISIS are doing? It’s an absurd consideration, but it distorts policies, both domestic and foreign, over and over again. 

Of Obama and Ebola 3

To reinforce the verdict given by Bill Whittle on the Obama administration’s handling of the Ebola scare (see the video below Fear of Ebola, posted October 18, 2014), here are excerpts from an article by Matthew Vadum at Front Page:

President Obama’s lies about the communicability of the truly terrifying Ebola virus are recklessly putting American lives at risk. …

At a photo-opportunity disguised as an emergency cabinet meeting the president did what he always does: he lied and lied and lied.

“Here’s what we know about Ebola: That it is not like the flu,” Obama told his groupies in government and the media in reassuring tones. “It is not airborne.* The only way that a person can contract Ebola is by coming into direct contact with the bodily fluids of somebody who is showing symptoms. In other words, if they don’t have symptoms, they’re not contagious.” …

The White House website repeats Obama’s lies: “You can only get the Ebola virus by direct contact with: Body fluids of a person who is sick with or has died from Ebola; Objects contaminated with the virus; Infected animals.” …

Dr. Steven J. Allen [is] an expert on the Ebola virus and he says Obama is not telling the truth. … Although Ebola is indeed spread by means of body fluids there’s a catch.

We don’t how long it can last on surfaces or as droplets in the air so when President Obama said earlier this month you can’t get it from sitting beside someone on a bus that was a total lie … You can get the disease from such a small number of viral particles that logic says you can get it from someone coughing in your vicinity.

In other words, Ebola can spread through the air, contrary to Obama’s remarks. This helps to explain why health care professionals who value their lives wear hazmat suits that look like astronaut gear when dealing with Ebola-infected patients. …

Dr. Allen says:

It is Obama’s ideology that makes him incompetent. … Public health is supposed to be about fighting infectious disease and protecting people from environmental dangers. We have the Environmental Protection Agency to cover the environment and the Centers for Disease Control is supposed to be for infectious disease.

The Obama people, continuing a long-developing trend, have reinvented public health to mean control over personal behavior such as what you eat, whether you have guns in the house, whether you drive drunk … but the CDC is supposed to be dealing with infectious disease, not personal behavior. Anything else is mission creep and getting away from protecting us as was intended when the CDC was created.

In the Obama era the CDC has pushed a dizzying array of social-engineering proposals that have nothing to do with disease. These nanny state initiatives include a federal universal motorcycle helmet law, a study of video games and television violence, a “national action plan” to prevent accidents in children’s playgrounds, and studies and campaigns “promoting positive community norms” and “safe, stable, nurturing relationships (SSNRs)” in homes and schools.

Obama praised several officials including Homeland Security adviser Lisa Monaco and his perpetually bungling CDC Director Tom Frieden, who has been busy more or less full-time in recent weeks issuing clarifications of his infelicitous, inaccurate statements from the previous day.

Obama said the officials have done an “outstanding job” so far, but that with flu season upon us and Department of Homeland Security officials also working on combatting ISIS, “they also are responsible for a whole bunch of other stuff”.

Despite all the fabulous work [done by] Frieden, who used to labor for then-New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg on vital projects like limiting the size of soda pop servings, Obama is warming to the idea of appointing an “Ebola czar” to coordinate the government’s response to the crisis that his boneheaded policies have created.

Since that was written, Obama has appointed an “Ebola czar”: Ron Klain, a spin-doctor who did his thing for Al Gore and Joe Biden, and whose prime accomplishment was facilitating Obama’s shocking scheme  to promote solar energy: flushing $535m of taxpayers’ money down the toilet known as Solyndra. He has no qualifications in medicine and no experience dealing with public health issues.

Frieden has been coming under increasingly heavy political fire in recent days. It doesn’t help that he has no idea what he’s doing, Allen said. “The problem with Frieden is he is a prohibitionist zealot who is clueless about the threat we are currently facing…”

Although quarantining infectious patients has been practiced with impressive results ever since the invention of medical science, Obama refuses to halt travel to the U.S. from Ebola-afflicted parts of the world, even from Ebola-devastated Liberia, home of the patient who recently succumbed to the disease at a Texas hospital.

Defying common sense, Obama says a “flat-out travel ban is not the way to go”. 

Critics point to Obama’s stubborn refusal to stop residents of Liberia and other affected countries from visiting the U.S. as incompetence or a lack of leadership.

This criticism may be unfair. Obama is more likely acting out of principle.

Obama’s neo-Marxist, identity politics-infused worldview holds that America is an imperial power that has victimized other nations merely by being wealthy and powerful. Meanwhile, Obama romanticizes backward countries like those former colonies in Ebola-rich West Africa and views imposing a travel ban on their citizens as adding insult to the grievous injuries that the perpetually guilty United States has inflicted on them.

The president has no compunction putting American lives at risk and subordinating their interests to those of West Africans.

Obama seems to forget that his chief duty under the Constitution is to protect the American people.

Did he ever remember it?

 

* Go here to read a scientist’s opinion that the Ebola virus can mutate to become airborne if it has not already done so.

Posted under Africa, Commentary, Health, immigration, Leftism, United States by Jillian Becker on Sunday, October 19, 2014

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