Airlines canceling flights to Cuba — What, nobody wants to visit Castro’s Communist Hell Hole?

Frontier and Silver Airways eliminate Cuba flights. Fort Lauderdale-based Silver Airways said it had made “the difficult but necessary” decision to suspend all its Cuba service on April 22. It had originally hoped to serve all nine of the Cuban cities outside Havana that the U.S. Department of Transportation had authorized for regularly scheduled flights from the United States to Cuba.

Frontier is canceling its Miami-Havana route on June 4 due to higher than anticipated costs and lower than expected demand. “Market conditions have failed to materialize there, and excess capacity has been allocated to the Florida-Cuba market,” the airline said in a statement.

Some of the forbidden-fruit, pent-up-demand aspect of Cuba travel that was so much in evidence in 2015 and 2016 has faded, too.

“This lack of demand coupled with overcapacity by the larger airlines has made the Cuban routes unprofitable for all carriers,” Silver said in statement.

Gee, I thought Cuba was a Communist paradise. I thought Americans frustrated with Obamacare would want to go to Cuba for its fabulous healthcare. Didn’t some scary looking fat guy even make a documentary about Cuba’s wonderfully advanced and free healthcare? I think it was called Sicko, or something. The title was supposed to refer to American healthcare under Obamacare.

Oh, I remember now. Castro banned the documentary in Cuba because he was afraid ordinary Cubans might get the wrong impression. He didn’t want ordinary Cubans to see this documentary because it painted a rosy picture of Cuban healthcare. They might wonder where it was and why they’d never seen it. Not good. Better to keep them happy with the crappy system they’ve got.

Here is what the GOP should do about the CBO predictions

We know what they should do, but it’s something they hardly ever do because they don’t like to do it. They should fight back. They should say the CBO numbers are phoney and they should offer their own numbers on how many people will lose their health insurance if Obamacare is NOT repealed.

That number is easy, doesn’t even need any imaginary bean counting by the CBO. The number that will lose their health insurance if Obamacare is not repealed is EVERYBODY. Obamacare is in a death spiral. It’s going to repeal itself if Congress doesn’t hurry up and do it first.

Are You Really Worse Off If You “Lose” Your Insurance? No, the elixir of the free market will create wonderful new and innovative solutions, but we’ll never see any of them if Government continues to occupy the field. Read the whole thing.

Fact is, nobody needs to lose their health insurance. Repealing Obamacare doesn’t have to repeal medicaid. Most of those in the Obamacare exchanges are on Medicaid, which is not going to shut down just because Obamacare is repealed. The rest can simply buy insurance without having to go to an Obamacare exchange because those won’t exist anymore. They will probably be able to lower their insurance premiums if they are allowed to buy, and insurance companies are allowed to sell a policy that people can afford.

We’ve seen this before — Democrat Trickery at the CBO

Democrats are more skilled than Republicans in using various tricks to make imaginary numbers appear to be real. Democrats are esepcially more skilled at manipulating the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) scoring process on the cost and future financial results of legislation. They can always get what they want out of the CBO, and that’s why the CBO has just given a grim report of the number of people who will lose their health insurance if the GOP healthcare bill passes.

A piece in 2009, Legislative Reality v. Political Reality, started with a famous line from Will Rogers: “The budget is like a mythical bean bag. Congress votes mythical beans into it, then reaches in and tries to pull real ones out.”

Nobody thinks the current trial balloon by the GOP is going to be the final bill so why is the CBO even analyzing it now? The CBO, we might recall, is supposed to be a non-partisan institution dedicated to helping Congress avoid voting mythical beans into the budget. Only the most incredulous still believes that. O’Sullivan’s first law of politics took over the CBO a long time ago. It has become just another hack organization to help Democrats count mythical beans and get whatever they want with whatever level of trickery is required.

In 2009 Obamacare was in jeopardy of not passing the House because several members said they wouldn’t vote for it unless the CBO certified that it’s cost would not exceed $1 Trillion. The CBO dutifully and quickly certified that Obamacare would come in under $1 Trillion. Now reality is upon us, and to date it’s cost has far exceeded $1 Trillion. The Dems in the House were always going to vote for it, they just needed the CBO to provide cover for them and the CBO complied.

There is no reason to believe anything the CBO is now saying about the GOP version of Obamacare 2.0. There are lots of real reasons to question the wisdom of Paul Ryan and the current GOP healthcare proposal. None of them have a thing to do with the CBO. it’s been so corrupted by Democrats it can never again be trusted. Plain and simple, it should be abolished. All of its current employees and bosses should be forever barred from working in any government agency.

Of course, that’s mythical bean counting. Democrats will fight to the death to keep it and the GOP hasn’t even got the guts to call the CBO for it’s blatant partisan stance and phoney predictions. Paul Ryan is leading the stupid party into a conundrum with the CBO by saying he believes the CBO numbers will look better when they are finished. Any fool knows that will never happen. He may as well ask Nancy Pelosi for her blessing.

The old selective surprise trick

Fox News:

Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., top Democrat on the Judiciary Committee, issued a statement late Friday saying: “I’m surprised to hear that President Trump and Attorney General Sessions have abruptly fired all 46 remaining U.S. attorneys.”

Gee, that’s funny. When Bill Clinton fired 92 U.S. Attorneys as one of his first acts of office after   assuming the presidency in 1993, old DiFi wasn’t surprised at all.

Tax cuts for “the rich” will help minimum wage workers

What, are your nuts? How can tax cuts for Big BurgerMeisters help their minimum wage workers, who pay no income taxes anyway? Well, because a tax cut for business will help that business cope with the current mania for raising the minimum wage. That means the burgermiesters might not have to raise prices for meisterburgers so much, or might not have to replace burger flippers with robots. All that means current minimum wage workers might be able to keep their jobs.

It also might mean something else, equally salutary.  If the burgermeister can afford to pay the new higher minimum wage he will continue to fill the position with a human instead of a robot. The new higher wage might then actually benefit the burgermeister because he can hire a better qualified applicant if he’s able to offer a higher wage. In the past, before tax cuts for burgermeisters, the old lower paid employee may have been out the door because he wasn’t as qualified as the new higher paid employee would be.  But the prospect of keeping his job and the new higher wage might induce the current employee to upgrade himself sufficiently to persuade his boss to keep him in his job, even at the higher pay scale.

Fewer employment dislocations and higher wages for those at the bottom of the economic ladder, these are good things. All made possible by business tax cuts.

Breitbart makes stunning indictment of GOP’s Obamacare 2.0

Obamacare 2.0 is what they’re calling the GOP’s so-called repeal and replacement of Obamacare. Breitbart might have been Trump’s biggest supporter during the runup to the November election. So this is a pretty big deal and show’s how bad the GOP has stepped in it with it’s Obamacare replacement proposal.

7 Reasons Why Obamacare 2.0 is All But Guaranteed to Impose Crushing Costs on Voters, Hurt Trump’s Base, And Hand Power Back to The Democrats

Read the entire piece for the specific complaints Breitbart has against Obamacare 2.0. All seven can be summed up as follows: The GOP really is not replacing Obamacare, they aren’t even repealing it. They are merely modifying it and putting their name on it.  That means that when all the inevitable dislocations and unintended consequences happen they will get the blame for it. Under the GOP plan Americans still have to “enroll” in what will now be called Trumpcare. There will be a slew of regulations governing just how, when and who will “enroll.”

The experience of government micromanagement of the American healthcare system since 1965 has shown that an omnibus government healthcare plan is a bad idea that results in higher cost and lower quality at every level.  The VA is the prime example. The only real fix to America’s healthcare woes is to get government out of the picture. Healthcare is a problem that the American people can better solve on their own.

The establishment elected Democrats obviously don’t want anything to do with allowing people the freedom to make their own choices. Now it seems Republicans don’t either, at least not the Mitch McConnell or Paul Ryan types.

Democrats will fight the passage of Trumpcare, but secretly they will love it. The opportunities for demagoguery will abound. As will opportunities to legitimately criticize GOP fumbling. We all know that Democrats have a special ability to capitalize on GOP shortcomings and ride them to victory.  It’s a well-honed skill they have that the GOP wholly lacks.

Trumpcare will harm the very people that elected Donald Trump. We know the GOP establishment loves to look down their noses at Trump and his supporters. They have a superiority complex. They consider Trump and his supporters to be uncouth interlopers who somehow got over the wall. They deeply resent that.  John McCain and Lindsey Graham are representative of a type of GOP politician who would have been perfectly happy if Hillary Clinton had won, and wouldn’t mind it one bit if Trump and his voters where shown the exit in the next election. Mitch McConnell and Paul Ryno Ryan are not exactly on the same plane with McCain and Ryan, but close enough for government work. George Will represents another part of the GOP establishment, the non-office holding part, that will rejoice when Trump and his ilk are sent packing. Will is honest about it. He said before the election he hoped Hillary would win. The final segment of the GOPe that would love to tell Trump to not let the door hit him on the way out are the big money GOP donors, such as the Chamber of Commerce. They can all be expected to cheer for Trumpcare if they believe it will hasten his demise from the Washington poltical scene.

One top of all this will be the Deep State, diligently working to undermine Trumpcare to ensure that Americans will hate it just as much as they now despise Obamacare.

For these reasons, and those cited by Breitbart, I think it must be seriously considered that the GOPe in Congress are attempting to use Trumpcare to engineer their own future, with little regard for the future of the American people and their ability to get affordable health insurance and high quality health care.

There is a simple way they could reform health care and health insurance. Repeal Obamacare and replace it with nothing. That would create a very short-lived void that would quickly be filled with new offerings of health insurance and innovative health care alternatives.  It would happen just as Frederic Hayek and Ludwig von Mises explained decades ago, by the spontaneous order that develops when people are allowed to make their own choices as they themselves deem to be in their best interest.

But that course offers too few opportunties for graft and politicking. It therefore doesn’t appeal to Washington politicians.

UPDATE: Anthem Blue Cross backs Trumpcare. That shouldn’t make you feel any better about it.

Rats, Vermin and Leeches and a Lesson on Healthcare

A history lesson on why it’s not advisable to have the government involved in fixing health care, from ZeroHedge, by Art Cashin:

On this day in 1349, in the midst of the infamous Black Plague epidemic, the forces of government, science and academia came together with a plan to save the people. As you recall from earlier episodes, the Black Plague had spread from the eastern Mediterranean throughout most of Europe killing millions over the preceding three years. People searched everywhere for the source of the plague…..a heavenly curse; a burden of immigrants; the result of spices in the food. It was tough to figure however, since whenever they held a conference either the host area caught the plague or the visitors did……..not too many conferences.

Then in the six months preceding this date the death rate leveled off…..or seemed to. So in castles and universities and town halls across Europe, great minds pondered the cause of the plague. And they came pretty close. The collective governmental/academic wisdom was that the source of the Black Plague was fleas – (absolutely correct). So the word went out from town to town across Europe – to stop the plague – kill the fleas -by killing all the dogs. And immediately the slaughter of all dogs began.

But like lots of well-intentioned governmental/academic ideas it was somewhat wide of the mark…and had unexpected consequences. The cause was fleas alright but not dog fleas… was rat fleas. And in the 1300’s what was the most effective way to hold down the rat population… guessed it – dogs. So by suggesting that townsfolk kill their dogs, the wise authorities had unwittingly allowed the rat population to flourish and thus a new vicious rash of Black Plague began. Before it was over, three years later, nearly 1 out of 3 people in the world had died of the plague.

To mark this eventful period, take time to review your public servant’s plans for your welfare. Whether taxes or healthcare, they’ll work night and day for a solution. It may not be as efficient as the way that they handled social security but – what is? Just remember that these public servants have your best interests at heart. Don’t dwell on the DARK AGES. Back in those days the seat of government often was filled with rats, vermin and leeches. Thank goodness those days are over.

(Historic footnote…..Published sources say that with so many people dying, millions of estates had to be settled – result…..the fallout of the plague was a huge growth in….the number of lawyers.)

Never leave something as complex as health care for 350 million people to rats, vermin and leeches.

Monica Crowley emerges unscathed from false charges of plagerism

Monica Crowley was hired by former President Richard Nixon to be his research assistant in 1990 when she was 22 years old. She remained in that roll until Nixon died in 1994. Later she wrote two books about him, Nixon in Winter and Nixon Off the Record. Both books appeared in 1998.

Back in the 1990s I was still in the death throes of liberalism and was no fan of Richard Nixon. I still find fault with the man but from an entirely different perspective now, one that is more charitable. At that time I was skeptical of Crowley because of her association with Nixon. Later, after reading some of her writing I came to a new understanding and appreciation.

She’s way too smart to easily dismiss, as I had done. When I began to read Monica Crowley’s regular column in the New York Post as well other of her writings in the Wall Street Journal and other print outlets, I realized how I had misjudged her. I became a devoted fan.

When she was recently lambasted for plagerism I felt let down. Now I feel foolish for believing the lies. I should have known better because those charges have now been thoroughly debunked. I’m chagrined at how easily I let CNN and the other Captains of Fake News snooker me.

Anyway, I’ve taken stock and come to my senses. Watch this, it’s good:

GOP has served up a plate of rotten eggs

Kurt Schlichter:

Hi, GOP: You are Terrible and Obamcare Jr. Stinks. When Paul Ryan and his congressional clown car of alleged conservatives surprised us by just sort of dropping Obamacare Jr. on us, I wasn’t surprised to see them trip all over their Guccis during the utterly inept roll out. These nimrods couldn’t effectively communicate to Elizabeth Warren with smoke signals. But even I was shocked at how transcendently crappy their proposed Obamacare replacement is. Let me put it this way: the only thing that steaming pile of failure would be good for is as the key prop in a very specialized, niche German porno film.

Seriously, how many times do we have to tell you? Obamacare must die. Kill it dead – with fire!

Repeal and “replace always made me nervous. Looks like I was right, a Republican version of government-run health care is little better than the Democrat version. It’s the government-run part that is bad and should be dumped. Health care and health insurance just needs to be made legal. It doesn’t need to be run by a nanny government that isn’t a good nanny. We are not children and we don’t need no stinkin’ nanny. Especailly we don’t need a nimrod nanny that doesn’t understand the concept of insurance.

Read the whole Schlichter piece, it’s good.

Cops and Prostitutes

No, next question. Should Cops in Prostitution Stings Go All The Way? Michigan police officers enjoy immunity from the state’s prostitution laws when they are investigating human trafficking.

Apparently, that immunity applies to sexual intercourse with a prostitute as well as just the solicitation. This is silly. Actually having sex is not required to prove what prositutes are normally charged with, which is solicitatioin of prostitution, not prostitution itself. The solicitation crime is just as serious so there is no need to allow the cops to get laid as a bonus. Cops having sex with prostitutes is police corruption no matter how you slice it. Other states have laws similar to Michigan’s. Immeditate change is required. Besides, most prostitutes are too scampy for any decent and self-respecting cop to want to have sex with. If it were required they’d be elgible for hazardous duty pay.

There’s another reason it should never be allowed, maybe even a bigger reason. No matter what sort of a low-class person a prostitute may be, they are human beings and no human being should ever be taken advantage of in this very intimate way. Morally if not legally, allowing a cop in a prostitution sting to have sex with a prostitute is a form of assault. Since it’s with government participation and authority it’s also a form of official tyranny.  It’s a low-down act if ever there was one.