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Posts Tagged ‘Pelosi’

Back in July, I asked “Why are there so many bad and corrupt people in government?” and suggested two possible explanations.

  1. Shallow, insecure, and power-hungry people are drawn to politics because they want to control the lives of others.
  2. Good people run for political office, but then slowly but surely get corrupted because of “public choice” incentives.

Both answers are correct, of course. The real debate is whether one type dominates (based on decades of up-close interaction, I’m guessing there are more from category #1).

In any event, there are plenty of things to dislike about politicians. What’s especially galling is when they decide they don’t have to abide by the laws and regulations they impose on the rest of us.

Consider, for example, the oleaginous example of Nancy Pelosi. The Speaker of the House apparently feels she doesn’t have to obey the rules imposed on everyone else.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi visited a San Francisco hair salon on Monday afternoon for a wash and blow-out, despite local ordinances keeping salons closed amid the coronavirus pandemic… In security footage…, the California powerhouse is seen walking through eSalon in San Francisco with wet hair, and without a mask over her mouth or nose. …Salons in San Francisco had been closed since March and were only notified they could reopen on Sept. 1 for outdoor hairstyling services only. Salon owner Erica Kious…cast Pelosi’s visit as a double standard. “It was a slap in the face that she went in, you know, that she feels that she can just go and get her stuff done while no one else can go in, and I can’t work,”…Kious told Fox News that she had expected to be able to reopen her salon in July, and prepared her space in accordance with local guidelines. “There were rules and regulations to go by to safely reopen, which I did, but I was still not allowed to open my business,” she said.

By the way, I can’t resist sharing this additional passage from the story.

“No one can last anymore,” she said. “I have also lost 60 percent of my clientele because everyone is fleeing the city.”

I’ll simply add that there are good reasons to escape San Francisco. And those reasons existed before the coronavirus.

But that’s just a start. There are also good reasons to leave California.

But I’m digressing. Let’s get back to the topic of repugnant politicians so we can see that that Pelosi isn’t the only hypocrite.

Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney also deserves attention for his two-faced behavior.

Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney publicly apologized on Monday after he was busted for sneaking across the border to enjoy a meal at a Maryland restaurant over the weekend. …in Philadelphia, indoor dining is still fully forbidden under restrictions imposed by the city government—the one that Kenney runs. …his do-as-I-say-not-as-I-do approach to COVID-19 undermines the legitimacy of the harsh restrictions Philadelphia has imposed on its own restaurant industry and demonstrates a callous disregard for how those policies have impacted the city’s residents and businesses. Kenney can drive across the border to Maryland easily, but a Philly bar can’t pick up and move to Delaware to escape the city’s lockdowns.

This online comment about Kenney’s hypocrisy is priceless.

By the way, Kenney is infamous for imposing a soda tax that hurt Philly merchants since consumers simply stocked up at stores outside the city. So at least he’s consistent in hurting all types of businesses.

In any event, both Pelosi and Kenney deserve consideration if there’s a 2020 Politician of the Year contest (previous contestants for that honor include D.C. Councilman Jack Evans, Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte, Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak, and French President Francois Hollande).

Or maybe we need a Hypocrite of the Year contest. Though normally that’s a honor reserved for rich politicians who advocate for higher taxes on ordinary people, yet figure out clever ways of protecting their own money (such as Joe Biden, Senator Elizabeth WarrenSenator John KerryBill and Hillary ClintonCongressman Alan GraysonGovernor J.B. Pritzker, and Tom Steyer).

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Wow. Not even a pretense of caring about fiscal responsibility. Keep the status quo, even if it means America is doomed to suffer a Greek-style budget meltdown.

Those were my thoughts when I heard that Harry Reid appointed Senators Kerry, Murray, and Baucus to the “super committee” created by the debt limit bill.

And then I was similarly stunned when Nancy Pelosi picked Representatives Clyburn, Becerra, and Van Hollen.

If you wanted to select the six most doctrinaire statists in Congress, you’d be hard pressed to come up with a different list. To understand just how left wing they are, here’s a chart showing their 2010 ratings from the National Taxpayers Union. They all had the same grade – a big fat F. And that is rather remarkable since NTU grades on a big curve. A score of 19 is all it takes to get a D.

For purposes of comparison, I’ve also added a line indicating Senator Ted Kennedy’s lifetime rating. He got an F, of course, but his average rating was higher than every single one of the big-government clowns named by Reid and Pelosi.

As I said earlier, wow.

I hope the too-eager-to-please GOPers realize that this super committee is nothing other than a tax increase trap.

Fortunately, there is a sure-fire winning strategy for the super committee, which I’ll write about next week.

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Anybody with an IQ above room temperature understands that companies only hire workers when they expect to generate net revenue (i.e., the total receipts associated with a new worker are expected to be higher than the total costs). That’s why it was so reprehensible for Congress to approve a 40-percent hike in the minimum wage – a step that was guaranteed to kill jobs. The Wall Street Journal’s editorial page reports on new research showing 100,000-plus jobs were wiped out. This awful legislation was approved in 2007, and all politicians associated with that choice should be ashamed of themselves.

Economic slowdowns are tough on many job-seekers, but they’re especially hard on the young and inexperienced, whose job prospects have suffered tremendously from Washington’s ill-advised attempts to put a floor under wages. In a new paper published by the Employment Policies Institute, labor economists William Even of Miami University in Ohio and David Macpherson of Trinity University in Texas find a significant drop in teen employment as a direct result of the minimum wage hikes. The wage hikes were implemented in three stages between 2007 and 2009, and not all states were affected because some already mandated a minimum wage above the federal requirement. But for the 19 states affected by all three stages of the federal wage increase, “there was a 6.9% decline in employment for teens aged 16 to 19,” write the authors. And for those who had not completed high school, “we estimated that the hikes reduced employment by 12.4%,” which translates to about 98,000 fewer teens in the work force. After isolating for other economic factors and broadening their analysis to include all 32 states affected by any stage of the federal wage increase, the authors conclude that “the federal minimum-wage hikes reduced teen employment by 2.5% translating to approximately 114,400 fewer employed teens.”

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Nancy Pelosi is being appropriately mocked for her strange assertion that subsidizing unemployment is a great way to “stimulate” the economy, but keep in mind that this she is just mindlessly regurgitating standard Keynesian theory. Here are two videos. The first is Pelosi’s ramblings and the second is my analysis of Keynesian economics. I hope my words are more convincing.

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A Denver Post column hits the nail on the head regarding the Obama-Reid-Pelosi healthcare strategy. They will make lots of fake concessions and offer whatever bribes are necessary in order to put in place an infrastructure that inevitably leads to complete government control of the health care sector:

Once Washington gains a toehold — and considering government controls 49 cents on every health care dollar spent, by toehold I mean “bear hug” — it is an inescapable reality that whatever they come up with will be expansive and expensive. That’s the message Pelosi was telegraphing to her allies when — in addition to pointing out how itty bitty the bill would be — she added that it would be “big enough” to put the country on a “path” toward sustainable health care reform. The righteous “path,” naturally, ends at the gates of a single-payer system. The infrastructure to reach this objective — price controls, new entitlements and wide-ranging mandates — will be set in place once Democrats use reconciliation to pass the bill, deal with the short-term electoral consequences, and let history work itself out. …Remember that Congress estimated Medicare’s cost at $12 billion for 1990 (adjusted for inflation) when the program kicked off in 1965. Medicare cost $107 billion in 1990 and is quickly approaching $500 billion. Who’s going to stop it?

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I don’t know which is scariest. Probably Biden. Maybe Frank.

Constipation

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The punitive class-warfare mentality of the left can be found buried in the healthcare bill. The Wall Street Journal dug deep and found a big capital gains tax increase. Ideally, there should be no double taxation of income that is saved and invested, which means the right tax rate is zero. Boosting the rate from 15 percent to 25.4 percent is a big step in the wrong direction, of course, and almost surely will lose revenue (and definitely will undermine growth):

Our job is to read bad legislation so you don’t have to, and on that score we may demand combat pay for plowing our way through the House health-care bill that passed on Saturday. …House Democrats are funding their new entitlement with a 5.4% surtax on incomes above $500,000 for individuals and above $1 million for joint filers. The surcharge is intended to snag the greatest number of taxpayers to raise some $460.5 billion, and so the House has written it to apply to modified adjusted gross income. That means it includes both capital gains and dividends. That surtax takes effect on January 1, 2011, or the day the Bush tax rates of 2001 and 2003 expire. Today’s capital gains tax rate of 15% would bounce back to 20% because of the Bush repeal and then to 25.4% with the surtax. That’s a 69% increase, overnight.

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This video provides 12 reasons in less than 7 minutes.

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Republicans usually are not very creative, so I’m uncharacteristically impressed that they have come up with a devastating chart showing the bureaucratic nightmare that will be created (on top of the current mess) for health care.

Congressman Brady of Texas gets an award for the best one-liner, saying about the Pelosi plan that “If the IRS and Medicare had a baby, it would look like this.”

Pelosi Plan

For a closer look, click this PDF link.

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This blog has been warning about the danger of a value-added tax. We’ve cited the salivating comments of Speaker Pelosi. We’ve noted the favorable comments by Obama insiders like the former Co-Chairman of his transition team. We know the battle is coming. Now we need to fight. This newly-released video from the Center for Freedom and Prosperity provides the data showing that this is a do-or-die fight. If we lose, there is no hope of stopping statism. Blocking a VAT is not a sufficient condition to protect America from becoming a French-style welfare state, but it is a necessary condition.

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Less than two weeks ago, this blog discussed how one of Obama’s main political allies was arguing for a value-added tax Now Nancy Pelosi is adding her shrill voice to the mix. The left’s agenda is rather clear. They need this giant new consumption tax if they want to keep making government bigger. This is a serious threat – especially since there are a handful of Republicans who would be tempted to go along with the idea because they foolishly think that a VAT will help exports (I explained why this is preposterous in a Wall Street Journal column, which can be read here). Here’s a story from The Hill with some of the details:

A new value-added tax (VAT) is “on the table” to help the U.S. address its fiscal liabilities, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) said Monday night. …The VAT is a tax on manufacturers at each stage of production on the amount of value an additional producer adds to a product. Pelosi argued that the VAT would level the playing field between U.S. and foreign manufacturers, the latter of which do not have pension and healthcare costs included in the price of their goods because their governments provide those services, financed by similar taxes. “They get a tax off of that and they use that money to pay the healthcare for their own workers,” Pelosi said, using the example of auto manufacturers. “So their cars coming into our country don’t have a healthcare component cost. “Somewhere along the way, a value-added tax plays into this. Of course, we want to take down the healthcare cost, that’s one part of it,” the Speaker added. “But in the scheme of things, I think it’s fair look at a value-added tax as well.”

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