- The Washington Times - Monday, November 30, 2009

GETTING COLDER

“Just a few considerations in addition to previous remarks about the explosion of the East Anglia Climategate e-mails in America,” Gerald Warner writes in the London Telegraph, referring to recently revealed e-mails in which leading climate scientists talked about falsifying research, resisting data disclosure and squelching skepticism of man-made global warming.

“The reaction is growing exponentially there. Fox News, Barack Obama’s nemesis, is now on the case, trampling all over Al Gore’s organic vegetable patch and breaking the White House windows. It has extracted some of the juiciest quotes from the e-mails and displayed them on-screen, with commentaries. Joe Public, coast-to-coast, now knows, thanks to the clowns at East Anglia’s CRU, just how royally he has been screwed,” Mr. Warner said.

Sen. James Inhofe’s Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works has written to all the relevant U.S. government agencies, acquainting them with the nature of the e-mails. But the real car crash for Obama is on Capitol Hill, where it is now confidently believed his Cap and Trade climate legislation is toast. It was always problematic; but with a growing awakening to the scale of the scientific imposture sweeping the world, as far as the Antipodes, the clever money is on Cap and Trade laws failing to pass, with many legislators skeptical and the mid-term elections looming ever closer.

“At the more domestic level, the proposed ban on incandescent light bulbs, so supinely accepted in this servile state of Britain, is now provoking a huge backlash in America. U.S. citizens do not like the government coming into their houses and putting their lights out. Voters may not understand the cut and thrust of climate debate at the technical level, but they know when the Man from Washington has crossed their threshold uninvited. …

“At this rate, Copenhagen is going to turn into a comedy convention, with the real world laughing at these liars. Now is the time to mount massive resistance to the petty tyrants and hit them where it hurts - in the wallet. Further down the line there may be, in many countries, a question of criminal prosecution of anybody who has falsified data to secure funds and impose potentially disastrous fiscal restraints on the world in deference to a massive hoax. It’s a new world out there, Al, and, as you may have noticed, the climate is very cold indeed.”

DREAMLAND

“Next time you run into a group of Democrats, offer to splash water on their faces,” Matthew Continetti writes in the Weekly Standard.

“They’ve spent 2009 in a dream state, and it’s time they wake up. They’re convinced that they can subsidize health insurance for millions of people while also ‘bending the cost curve’ of health care spending. They want to sign us up for the political equivalent of one of those three-step ‘eat more to lose weight’ diets. Step one: Pile on the expenditures, regulations, taxes, and fees. Step two: Close your eyes. Step three: Pray it all works out in the end.

“Sorry, it won’t. Entitlements cost money, and they almost invariably cost more than the government’s initial predictions. When you increase demand for a product and the supply remains fixed, the price rises. Thanks to the individual mandate, the Democratic health care bills lasso Americans into a heavily regulated health insurance oligopoly. All these new consumers will wander through the government-run ‘exchanges,’ buying the plans they can afford with taxpayer subsidies. As demand for health care increases, so will the cost,” Mr. Continetti said.

“The idea that expanding coverage will save the country money has always been a fantasy. True, the Congressional Budget Office found that, under certain assumptions that the authors of the legislation in effect required the CBO to make, the House and Senate health bills might not blow up the deficit over the next decade. But that won’t happen in the real world. For one thing, doctors’ reimbursements just aren’t going to be cut 20 percent.”

LAB EXPERIMENT

“The controversy surrounding the recent mammography guidelines issued by the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force is a recommendation for swift and decisive defeat of efforts to expand federal oversight of health care,” Doug O’Brien writes at biggovernment.com.

“It almost seems as if this was designed as a laboratory experiment to learn exactly what will happen under Obamacare.The results validate some of the most compelling arguments that opponents have made over the past few months,” Mr. O’Brien said.

“When opponents claim that Obamacare will lead to rationing of medical services, defenders counter with an irrelevant but true retort that care is already rationed by insurance companies. By this logic, everything is rationed by economics. Housing is rationed by the availability of capital to invest in housing, which is a collective market choice. Cars are rationed in that you can’t just walk into a dealer and drive off the lot. So, yes, currently the health care market, mostly in the form of third-party payers (insurers and public programs), rations care in that there are finite resources to pay for treatments and everyone cannot have everything any time they wish.

“The reason that argument is irrelevant is that the debate here is about government rationing of care, which represents an entire new level of restrictions on individuals. When the government sets up panels of ‘experts’ to make recommendations of what kind of care is appropriate under what circumstances, and those recommendations are implemented in the form of regulations over what care will and will not be paid for by both private and public insurance, it limits the rights of patients to control their care in consultation with their physicians. It also destroys the market for those excluded treatments, which then become either prohibitively expensive or entirely unavailable.”

ON THE LEFT

As President Obama prepares to address the nation on the war in Afghanistan, he faces opposition on the left, as demonstrated in a blog by Arianna Huffington at www.huffingtonpost.com.

“With the Senate ready to begin debating its health care bill next week, it’s time for President Obama to make an unambiguous case for its passage. Finally,” Ms. Huffington said.

“He needs to deliver on health care reform, including a public option, and then quickly move on to jobs, jobs, jobs - the latest Fed forecast predicts that unemployment will still be over 9 percent when the 2010 midterms roll around.

“Yet, on Tuesday, when the president addresses the nation, he won’t be making the case for health care or a jobs bill. Instead, he’ll be explaining why we need to ‘finish the job’ in Afghanistan by escalating the war. Can someone in the White House Priorities Department please hit reboot?”

Greg Pierce can be reached at 202/636-3285 or gpierce@washingtontimes .com.

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