Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Wednesday's wash

Once again, they claim recovery is in sight:
"Economic activity is stabilizing or improving in the vast majority ofthe country, according to a new government survey, adding to evidencethat the worst recession since the 1930s is over."
I've seen dozens of stories like this over the past several months.Yes, the recession is over or is about to be over, they tell us.Yet figures such as unemployment rates and jobless claims never seemto support it.Gosh--it couldn't be that some of our liberal friends populating themedia just WANT the recession to be over, real bad...In order to help the guy they support, Barack Obama---could it?

She adds her voice today (again) to the health care debate, through a newspaper op-ed. I especially liked the following:
""The answers offered by Democrats in Washington all rest on one principle: that increased government involvement can solve the problem. I fundamentally disagree," Palin writes in the 1,110 word op-ed in Wednesday's edition of the paper. "Common sense tells us that the government's attempts to solve large problems more often create new ones," the former GOP vice presidential candidate continues. "Common sense also tells us that a top-down, one-size-fits-all plan will not improve the workings of a nationwide health-care system that accounts for one-sixth of our economy...Is it any wonder that many of the sick and elderly are concerned that the Democrats' proposals will ultimately lead to rationing of their health care by-dare I say it-death panels?" she writes. "Establishment voices dismissed that phrase, but it rang true for many Americans." Ultimately, Palin says, Congress looks like it will abandon this so called "death panel" legislation because Americans made their voices heard in the contentious town halls last August. "But the fact remains that the Democrats' proposals would still empower unelected bureaucrats to make decisions affecting life or death health-care matters. Such government overreaching is what we've come to expect from this administration."

Note that she's not abandoning the criticism of "death panels." Nor should she. This administration and Democrats in general brought up "cost savings" in the context of end-of-life issues. In the end, that can only lead to, eventually, discussions of withholding procedures from the elderly...because of their age and because they're likely to die soon. Democrats may not like that. But they made their own bed here.
By the way, Obama's approval rating according to the latest AP poll? Only 50%; 49% disapproving. And his numbers on health care aren't so good either; only 42% approve of his performance there, and 52% disapprove.

Those of you who are true blognuts and follow this stuff religiously have undoubtedly already heard about this. But for those of you who might not have, here it is--here, that is, is what Tom Friedman wrote in his column in today's NY Times, lamenting the fact that Republicans won't embrace liberal ideas on health care, climate change policy, etc and thus make it more difficult to pass stuff:
"Watching both the health care and climate/energy debates in Congress, it is hard not to draw the following conclusion: There is only one thing worse than one-party autocracy, and that is one-party democracy, which is what we have in America today. One-party autocracy certainly has its drawbacks. But when it is led by a reasonably enlightened group of people, as China is today, it can also have great advantages. That one party can just impose the politically difficult but critically important policies needed to move a society forward in the 21st century."
Of course, actually those "enlightened" Chinese leaders repress free speech, jail critics, raze private dwellings whenever they feel like building something new, and order the poor persons displaced by the new construction to live elsewhere--where the government tells them to, natch. Does Friedman really not know this? That's inconceivable. Does he really not care? Does he really not understand that the slow pace of change one finds in democracy is the price way we pay for...ahem...FREEDOM???

BASEBALL DIARY: the Tigers lost last night to Kansas City, 7-5, as the bullpen doesn't get the job done. But the good news is that the Tigers still just finished winning 6 in a row, and both the Twins and White Sox also lost last night. But the Tigers need to keep playing good baseball...
The Cubs beat the Pirates again, 9-4; in other words, they do what they always do, whip up on the Pirates. Too bad they couldn't, this season, transfer that mojo to the rest of the league. Still, if the Cubs keep winning night after night into next week, the season could still get interesting...
But the Texas Rangers certainly remain in the playoff chase, and going to Cleveland helped them stay there yesterday--Ranger bats pounded out 21 runs in a doubleheader with the Indians, and the Rangers won 11-9 and 10-5. It was strange, because the Rangers had gone something like 20 innings without scoring over the weekend. But Tribe pitching cured that.
More importantly, the Rangers this year have showed a great deal of resiliency, always being able to get up and keep winning even after suffering losses here and there. It's what good teams do.