Archive for February, 2020

Running mates?

February 28, 2020

During this week’s Dem debate, my mind wandered to wondering about possible running mate choices.

I’m already on record projecting that Klobuchar would be a natural running mate for Biden if he rises from the ashes and snags the nomination.

Apparently, Amy is on that mind track, too.

Anybody notice how many times she said that she’s the one candidate that has sway in the swing Midwest states?

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What if Sanders gets the nod? Who will he select?

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Let’s put the coronavirus in perspective…

February 27, 2020

In his coronavirus press conference, President Trump said that he was shocked when he was informed that over 60,000 Americans died from the flu last year

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That number struck me as high, so I did some fact-checking…

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Bloomberg: “My $100 million won the House in 2018”

February 26, 2020

Paraphrasing, that was the line that caught my attention  during last night’s Democratic melee.

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Mayor Pete tried to sting Bernie with  “The 40 new congressional reps who were elected, weren’t running on your platform, Bernie … and now, they’re already running away from it.”

Mayor Mike stepped into school him on the point:

“No, it was the $100 million that I personally threw into those campaigns.”

Did he really say that?

The guy who is who is literally trying to buy the 2020 presidential election, crowed that he successfully bought the 2018 Congressional races.

Yipes.

The guy who is supposed to be the Democratic champion for capitalism offered up one of the strongest talking points against it.

When jabrones like Bloomberg grow their wealth to a point that they can buy control of the government, and try to do it, that’s a problem.

Chilling, isn’t it?

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The questions that I’d ask Bloomberg tonight …

February 25, 2020

I expect Bloomberg to be better prepared tonight, but expect that he’ll continue to take incoming fire from the other candidates.

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Just to make him squirm, here’s the first question that I’d like to see somebody ask him:

Mr. Blumberg, when you were mayor of NYC, you supported the policing policy called stop & frisk.

The murder rate in NYC dropped significantly when stop & frisk was enforced.

But, the  policy disproportionately impacted young minority males.

You recently apologized for supporting stop & frisk.

Does that mean that, if you had it to do over again, you would have halted stop & frisk and accepted a continuing higher murder rate?

Easy answer: “I would have halted stop & frisk, and doubled down on other murder prevention initiatives such as ….”

My bet: Bloomberg will freeze and blow it if the question is asked.

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And, here’s the pivotal question that I’d ask…

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India to Trump: “Macho, macho man”

February 25, 2020

Trump is despised by internationally, right?

Well, don’t tell the folks in India.

Over 100,000 packed a stadium rally for him.

Instead of the Star Spangled Banner or Hail to the Chief, the Indians ushered him into the rally to Village People’s classic Macho, Macho Man.

This clip – which, for some reason, isn’t being looped on many stations – is hysterical … well worth viewing.

When you click the link, be sure to ‘unmute’ the video (by moving your cursor over the video and ‘unchecking’ the x next to the speaker icon)  … and watch the Trump-hatted crowd dancing.

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India plays “Macho Man” by Village People as Trump enters Sardar Patel Stadium

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By end-of-day, I expect MSNBC to charge the Indians with election meddling …

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No wonder that I’m always looking over my shoulder…

February 24, 2020

Forbes reported an MIT study that ranked cities by how liberal or conservative they were.

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Of course, San Francisco topped the list.

Which other cities made the top 10?

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Trump: Thank you, Senator Warren!

February 21, 2020

She provided the Trump 2020 Campaign with the ad it needed
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If Bloomberg’s leveraged buyout of the Democratic succeeds and he gets the Dem presidential nomination, I’m betting that we’ll see this clip over and over and over.

click to view or read transcript below
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Warren blasts Bloomberg:

I’d like to talk about who we’re running against—a billionaire who calls women fat broads and horse-faced lesbians, and no, I’m not talking about Donald Trump, I’m talking about Mayor Bloomberg.

Democrats are not going to win if we have a nominee who has a history of harassing women, and of supporting racist policies like red-lining and stop-and-frisk.

If Bloomberg is the Dem nominee, suburban women may be caught between a rock and a hard place come November.

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Basic economics: What happens when demand outraces supply?

February 20, 2020

Yesterday, we posted: Has ObamaCare provided more healthcare?

On cue,  WSJ ran a complementary op-ed by Sally Pipes — a healthcare policy expert: Medicare for All Could Mean Doctors for None.

Pipes’ fundamental conclusion:

Everyone would have coverage, but that’s not the same thing as care.

More specifically:

Patients would have to compete for appointments with a dwindling number of overloaded and underpaid doctors.

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Here’s the logic and facts that underlie Pipes’ conclusions…

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Has ObamaCare provided more healthcare?

February 19, 2020

Not really: it just covered more people with health insurance?

Since Dems are making ObamaCare an election issue, let’s flashback to a prior post and inject some facts…

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In my consulting / problem-solving class, I always emphasized asking the right question before starting to gather data, doing analyses, drawing conclusions and making recommendations.

Makes sense, doesn’t it?

Then, would someone please explain to me why the politcos (on both sides) obsess over health insurance coverage (how many people are covered) and largely ignore the quantity & quality healthcare that Americans are getting?

 

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Source: AAMC

My conclusion: More Americans now have health insurance, but healthcare hasn’t increased … it has just been re-distributed.

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Remember how healthcare costs were going to drop by $2,500 for every family?

February 18, 2020

The Dem presidential candidates are making a big deal out of “fixing the healthcare system” … and “cutting healthcare costs”.

That’s noble, but raises a question that’s been bugging me …

Wasn’t Obamacare supposed to do that?

Specifically, Obama — who never lied according to the MSM — told us that every family’s healthcare costs would go down by $2,500.

So what happened?

In 2016 (Obama’s last year in office), employees paid $11,000 out-of-pocket for healthcare … up $2,500 since 2012.

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Milliman – a well-regarded actuarial consulting” firm – has published an annual recap of healthcare spending since 2001.

The Milliman Medical Index tracks the total costs of providing health care to an average family of four covered by an employer-sponsored “preferred provider plan” … that’s about 155 million employees and their dependents.

The total includes the health insurance premiums paid by both the employer and the employee, as well as the actual expenditures for health care paid by the insurance plan and out of pocket by the insured family.

The big news: In 2016, the average healthcare costs for a family of 4 surpassed $25,000 for the first time … the $25,826 is triple the cost to provide health care for the same family in 2001 … and up about $5,000 since 2012.

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The bad(est) news is the increased proportion of the healthcare costs being shouldered by individual employees …

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Trump’s tailwind in 3 charts.

February 17, 2020

I get bewildered when I hear the Dem presidential candidates whine about how bad things are going and how bad off Americans are.

I guess that they need to keep harping on the theme — and stimulating some despair —  because Americans seem to think they’re doing ok.

Who says?

According to Gallup, “Satisfaction With Personal Life” is at an all time high 90% … up from 78% during the Obama years.

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Hmm.

And, things get even better….
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How Biden & Klobuchar could both become president.

February 14, 2020

Simple: Biden should pre-announce he’s a 1-termer and name Amy as his running mate … and she should gracefully bow out of the 2020 presidential race and run as Joe’s VP.
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I hate to give the Dems useful advice, but…

Imagine a Joe Biden that is old but not cognitively challenged … and is nice and well-intended, not influenced by Ukrainian bribes laundered through his ne’er-do-well son.

Or, at least imagine that Biden’s above shortcomings could be sufficiently minimized or obscured so that voters revert to “It’s just Joe being Joe” and give him a pass.

If that were the case, the Dems dream ticket might be Biden-Klobuchar.

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Here’s my logic…

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Adam Corolla explains why LA doesn’t act on its homeless crisis.

February 13, 2020

Adam Corolla is a comedian and podcaster … a very clever guy who sees things that other people miss and presents his insights in his comedy.

He was recently on the Tucker Carlson show, opining about the homeless crisis in LA.

I thought the segment was both entertaining and insightful.

Here’s a link to the full 10-minute interview … which, in my opinion, is worth viewing.

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And, here are a couple of snippets to tease your interest…

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So, what happened to Biden and Warren?

February 12, 2020

Both Warren & Biden got smoked in NH last nite … they finished out of the money (4th & 5th place) … each got less than 10% of the vote … and neither scored any delegates.

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Pundits are coming up with many convoluted explanations, but the answers are really quite simple.

For Biden, the answer can be summed up in one word:impeachment.

Not his, Trump’s.

As we previously posted, Looks like Dems aimed at Trump but hit Biden…

I get it that Pelosi got pressured by AOC and her extreme liberal squad and by the most avid Trump-haters in her caucus.

Didn’t she realize that Biden would get caught in the crossfire? Or, was she just ok with sacrificing his candidacy?

Either way, Biden was toast from the get-go.

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In my opinion, Warren’s rapid slide can be traced to a single incident that went viral…

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Who wants to be president?

February 11, 2020

Or, more to the point: why would anybody want the job?
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The Iowa debacle didn’t surprise me. Maybe its an omen.

The morning after the last pre-Iowa Democratic debate, James Freeman of the WSJ asked: Doesn’t anybody want to be President?

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Freeman opined:

Six competitors took the stage at the Democratic presidential debate, but  nobody wanted to compete.

Given a final opportunity to challenge rivals before Democrats begin selecting the party’s nominee, the candidates looked just as bored as the television viewers who were treated to stale recitations of campaign talking points.

The reasonable conclusion is that both of America’s major political parties will be relying on Donald Trump to drive turnout in November.

I think Freeman may be selling Bernie short — that guy wants the job — but he’s on the right track.

In fact, I’d reframe the question and broaden it beyond the Dems roster of candidates.

For the the life of me, I can’t understand why anybody — including Donald J. Trump — would want the job rolling into 2021.

Here’s my thinking…

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Romney 2016: “If Trump is the GOP nominee …”

February 10, 2020

Some dire predictions from our national arbiter of morality.

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At the risk of piling on …

Last week, we flashed back to Romney’s 2016 public diatribe against then nomination candidate Trump.

Click to see a  3-minute video summary  or a transcript of the speech

Of course, he dwelled on Trump’s boorish personal behavior (as if that wasn’t already evident to all) and his choppy business record (with emphasis on the entrepreneurial  failures, e.g. Trump University and the Atlantic City casino).

And, he made a couple of dire predictions.

First, he unequivocally predicted: He will lose to Hillary Clinton.

Hmmm.

I guess his logic was: “I was a better candidate than Trump and I lost, so …”
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And, if Trump does get elected …

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Reprise: How Beef-Loving Voters Can End Up WithTofu

February 7, 2020

Was Biden a victim of the process or simply an awful candidate?
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This is from the HomaFiles archives – one of my favs.

The original WSJ article was inspired by Clinton’s win over elder Bush (the Perot factor), younger Bush’s win over Gore (the Nader factor), and Jesse Ventura’s gov win in Minnesota.

But, the analysis has current relevancy given the Iowa (partial) results.

Let’s look at how election processes influence results…

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Romney touted his deep Christian values …

February 6, 2020

But forgot to mention how much he hates Trump.

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Romney’s “guilty” vote should have been expected.

Listening to his near tearful rationalization of his vote, my mind immediately flashed back to his 2016 unforced diatribe against Trump.

Though Romney wasn’t a presidential candidate at the time, he felt it was his moral responsibility to give a speech to call out Trump.

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In a nutshell Romney opined: “Trump is a phony and a fraud lacking the temperament or judgement to be President” and “If his economic plans are implemented America will go into a deep recession.”

He could have stated his deep Christian assessment more simply as: “I hate Trump.”

I thought he was warming to Trump when he groveled for the Secretary of State job.

When Trump rejected him, the die was cast.

Revenge was certain … it just needed an opportunity.

Imagine how frustrating it was for Romney hear Trump recount his many presidential accomplishments during the State of the Union.

Well, Pelosi-Schiff-Nadler provided the opportunity … and Romney took it.

His vote really didn’t matter other than depriving Trump the chance to use the phrase “on a strictly partisan vote”.

It’ll be interesting to see how long his moral courage will be touted by the Dems who previously called him a racist, misogynist, animal abuser and corporate looter.

My bet: He’ll be a quickly fading Dem hero … hours or days … not months or years.

Romney is trying to claim the mantle that Comey forfeited as as America’s self-proclaimed moral arbitrator.

My question to him: When did hate become a Christian value?

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Looks like Dems aimed at Trump but hit Biden…

February 5, 2020

Two charts tell the story.
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Yesterday, as the Dems’ impeachment gambit continued to fizzle towards its inevitable conclusion, Gallup reported that:

President Donald Trump’s job approval rating has risen to 49%, his highest in Gallup polling since he took office in 2017.

His 94% approval rating among Republicans is up 6 percentage points from early January.  His 42% approval rating among independents is up 5 points, over the same timeframe.

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Rather than being a casualty of the Dems’ flailing impeachment attempt, Trump seems to be a beneficiary.

But, what about good old Sleepy Joe Biden?

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Bottom line: Trump was less guilty than Obama, Clinton and the Bidens.

February 3, 2020

OK, I’m willing to stipulate that Trump pressured Ukraine — by throttling some congressionally approved military aid — to get European nations to step-up with more aid (i.e. burden-sharing) … and to investigate the Bidens.

But, Schiff & Nadler weren’t able to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that Trump wanted the investigation to undercut Biden’s presidential campaign — versus legitimately investigating a corrupt act … nor were they able to demonstrate that the check-cutting delay created a security risk for either the U.S. or  Ukraine.

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And, Trump’s transgressions were shown to pale in comparison to those  perpetrated by Obama, Clinton and the Bidens … all of whom skated free.

Let me explain…

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Let’s start with Obama.

To appease the Russians, Obama withdrew support for the Polish missile defense system that was being developed … and ceded the strategically pivotal Crimea peninsula to the Russians by refusing to provide the Ukranians with lethal defensive munitions.

Disclaimer: My ancestry is 1/2 Polish, 1/2 Ukranian … so I take both acts of neglect a bit personally.

I was delighted that during the Schiff investigation the State Department witnesses had to admit that that Trump was providing  Ukraine more substantial military aid than Obama — mostly in the form of Javelin anti-tank missiles … and, that the delay in military aid didn’t have any material impact, e.g. no Javelins were delayed since they were previously funded under a separate program (that some of the House Managers voted AGAINST).

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Then, there’s the  Steele Dossier situation … funded by the Clinton campaign and the DNC.

Though going through a couple of laundering channels, they engaged a foreign agent (Steele) to dig up dirt on Trump … by soliciting “information” from Russian sources.

Of course, we all know how that turned out.

Falsified FISA requests opened the door to spying on the Trump campaign.

Any reasonable person might conclude that was engaging foreigners to interfere with a U.S. election, right?

I loved it when House Manager Jefferies stammered through a tortured rationale that said, in essence, that all they did was “purchase some opposition research’ … no harm no foul.

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And finally, the Bidens.

As I’ve argued before, if Burisima had handed Sleepy Joe a suitcase containing a million dollars to get the prosecutor fired, even Chuck Todd would have to admit it was a bribe.

My view: there is insignificant difference between a suitcase full of loot and a million dollar board seat for a family member who lacked any relevant experience or expertise … and who only attend a couple of board-related events.

The latter is just a lightly laundered bribe paid in installments rather than as a direct lump sum.

The Bidens are guilty as sin … and Trump had authority and responsibility to have their corruption investigated.

What I love is that the Biden case is so easy for everyone to understand: son gets a million bucks, dad fires prosecutor. Case closed.

Compare that to the tangled web of suspicions, inferences, and presumptions that the House witnesses provided.

When pressed, all those witnesses denied having any direct evidence of an impeachable crime.

Close that case, too.

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