Based upon a speech by Gov. Richard D. Lamm (D-CO)
Hat tip: Mark Levin
Petrodollar Alert: Putin Prepares To Announce “Holy Grail” Gas Deal With China: ZH
American Physical Society To Reject The Global Warming ‘Consensus’?: Breitbart
AAA says cold weather can chop EV range by 57%: SlashGear
Networks Shield Government from Blame for 176 Deaths During Government Motors Ownership: MRC
Iran-Contra Prosecutor Lawrence Walsh Dies; No One on TV Remembers Him, Or His 1992 Dirty Trick: NB
Too Busy to be President: AT
Why Does Michelle Obama’s Mother Live at the White House?: Tatler
Matt Drudge Pays First Installment of Obamacare Penalty; WH and Leftist Ignorance Ensue: BizzyBlog
Bill Maher to Dem Rep: ‘Why Doesn’t Your Party Come Out Against the Second Amendment?’: Breitbart
Note To Cops And Survivalists: The World Is Full Of Animals, Embrace It!: Herschel Smith
Washington Post Really Wants Hillary To Stress Sexism If She Runs: RWN
6,100 dead people on Nassau voter rolls, Newsday analysis finds: Newsday
Putin’s quiet Latin America play: Kristina Wong
Obama Surrendered U.S. Dominance in the Western Hemisphere and Invited the Enemy In: Sara Noble
US still waiting for apology from Israeli Defense Minister Ya’alon for Obama remarks: JPost
Vatican: Obama’s Policies ‘Hostile Toward Christian Civilization’: CNS
Pickle Boy Steps Up: Fred on Everything
Beijing hotel workers already ‘fed up’ with Obama entourage in 3400-square-foot, $ 8,350-per-night suite: Daily Mail
State Dept Under Hillary Failed To Report Nuclear Missile Treaty Violations By Russia: WZ
How Putin Dismembers NATO Without Firing A Shot. A Scenario From the Cold War: RS
Breaking: Wind Arrives in the Forbidden City: MOTUS
Microsoft Admits Snooping Through Blogger’s Hotmail Account: ZH
Cloud’s nightmare: A “run on the bank”: NetworkWorld
Chambliss: Boeing Says ‘No Way’ Would Catastrophic Event Turn Off Transponder: Tatler
Image: Breaking: Wind Arrives in the Forbidden City
Today’s Larwyn’s Linx sponsored by: Sick of Mitch McConnell’s Insults? Here’s How to Fire Him!
QOTD: “Russia is preparing the announcement of the “Holy Grail” energy deal with none other than China, a move which would send geopolitical shockwaves around the world and bind the two nations in a commodity-backed axis…
…while the biggest geopolitical tectonic shift since the Cold War accelerates with the inevitable firming of the “Asian Axis”, the West monetizes its debt, revels in the paper wealth created from an all time high manipulated stock market while at the same time trying to explain why 6.5% unemployment is really indicative of a weak economy, blames the weather for every disappointing economic data point, and every single person is transfixed with finding a missing airplane.” —Tyler Durden
Guest post by Jon Street
BURLINGTON, Vt. – In 2011, while the rest of America argued the merits of the president’s Affordable Care Act, Vermont jumped the progressive curve, promising to launch the nation’s first health single-payer system, in which state government pays providers to care for all residents.
Now, even Democrats say that plan, called Green Mountain Care, isn’t ready for its proposed 2017 rollout, and Rep. Jim Condon told Vermont Watchdog it’s time for Gov. Peter Shumlin to shelve the ambitious plan immediately.
“The deadlines for proposing financing have been missed two years in a row now, so to me that’s very disappointing. It’s becoming clearer and clearer that there is no financing plan,” Condon told Vermont Watchdog.
As Vermont Watchdog reported, an independent report by the Washington, D.C.-based consulting firm Avalere Health concluded that the costs of Green Mountain Care would require Vermont to raise tax revenue roughly equal to the state’s tax collections from all sources today.
Condon, a Democrat from Colchester, said he thinks a single-payer system in Vermont would “cost more” than a couple of previous estimates. Those estimates pegged the cost for single-payer at anywhere from $ 1.6 billion to $ 2.2 billion annually.
“It’s a government program [so] I think it’s going to cost more than that. Given that, I think it would be in the best interest of Vermonters to redirect our energies away from single-payer health care to trying to improve the system we’re in now,” Condon added.
Condon was one of three “Blue Dog Democrats” to vote against Act 48, the legislation establishing the transition to a single-payer health care system. According to Act 48, Green Mountain Care cannot have any negative implications for Vermont’s economy. But Condon said he’s not aware of any other way to pay for it outside of federal funding or raising taxes. And for that reason, Condon said he’s urging Gov. Shumlin not to seek a waiver from Obamacare, which the state must obtain from the federal government in order for single-payer to be implemented.
“They wouldn’t be able to ask for [the Obamacare waiver] until the economic analysis is done, and we cannot do an economic analysis until we have a financing plan. So, right now I suppose it’s in limbo,” he said.
In that limbo, both the administration and lawmakers continue to allocate state resources in hopes the state will still be able to provide health care to of all its residents by Jan. 2017, something Condon said is a “waste of resources at this point. Just to submit an application for a waiver from the Affordable Care Act is probably going to take half a year to determine, in and of itself.”
“There are people working on it [who] could be doing other things,” he added.
How many people are working on Green Mountain Care is unclear. Lt. Gov. Phil Scott, a Republican, said during an interview with Vermont Watchdog last week that he’s not even sure who exactly is working on the implementation of single-payer.
“I know we have a lot of people who are working on the exchange. I know we have the Green Mountain Care Board that is working on cost controls. But I’m still not sure who is working on the single-payer initiative,” Scott said.
Sen. Bobby Starr, another Democrat who voted against Act 48, told Vermont Watchdog in January there’s “no way” single-payer can work without new taxes. Indeed, no lawmaker has introduced any bill that would finance single-payer health care without also raising taxes.
One bill, introduced by Sen. Peter Galbraith (D-Windham), would impose a 13-percent payroll tax (11 percent on employers and 2-percent on employees) as well as a 10-percent tax on non-wage income. A second bill, also introduced by Galbraith, would phase in single-payer financing beginning in 2015 with a “transitional fund.” Galbraith’s second proposal would levy a 1.5-percent self employment tax increase in addition to reserving 7.7 percent of state income taxes for single-payer.
Contact Jon Street at email@example.com and find him on Twitter @JonStreet.
(Washington, D.C.) — “The air force commander of Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps was quoted by Iran’s Fars news agency as saying Tuesday that Iran’s military has its finger on the trigger to destroy Israel as soon as it receives the order to do so,” reports the Times of Israel. “In an article headlined ‘IRGC Commander: Iran’s Finger on Trigger to Destroy Zionist Regime,‘ Fars wrote that Brigadier General Hossein Salami had declared that Iranian military commanders are prepared to attack and destroy the Zionist regime of Israel as soon as they receive such an order.”
“Today, we can destroy every spot which is under the Zionist regime’s control with any volume of fire power (that we want) right from here,” Fars quoted Salami as telling a conference in Tehran Tuesday on “The Islamic World’s Role in the Geometry of the World Power.”
“Iranian leaders regularly issue threats against Israel and the United States, but the wording ascribed to Salami on Tuesday was particularly aggressive,” the article noted.
“Islam has given us this wish, capacity and power to destroy the Zionist regime so that our hands will remain on the trigger from 1,400 kilometers away for the day when such an incident (confrontation with Israel) takes place,” he was also quoted saying in the speech.
“The comments came a day after Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu presented a shipment of what he said were Iranian arms intercepted at sea last week, which he charged were intended for terror groups in Gaza,” noted the Times. “Netanyahu castigated the West for clinging to the illusion that Iran had changed, and said it remained relentlessly committed to fostering terrorism and advancing a nuclear weapons program. Last month, Iranian state TV ran a documentary featuring a computerized video of Iran’s drones and missiles bombing Tel Aviv, Haifa, Ben Gurion Airport and the Dimona nuclear reactor in a hypothetical retaliation for an Israeli or American strike on the Islamic Republic. Iranian drones and missiles were also shown in the film carrying out simulated strikes on the American aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln, downing American aircraft and striking American military targets in the Persian Gulf.”
There’s nothing like the courage and charisma of Mitch McConnell — when it comes to taking on his own base:
On Sunday, The New York Times reported that Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) stated that he would work to destroy the efforts of conservative organizations seeking to primary mainstream Republicans. “I think we are going to crush them everywhere,” he stated. “I don’t think they are going to have a single nominee anywhere in the country.”
Over the past two election cycles, mainstream Republicans have become more and more upset over the rise of Tea Party-backed candidates who have primaried GOP incumbents, then proceeded to lose general elections. McConnell has been personally attacked by the Senate Conservatives Fund, which supports businessman challenger Matt Bevin. McConnell recently began running an ad targeting both Bevin and SCF. The ad accuses SCF of soliciting “money under the guise of advocating for conservative principles but then spends it on a $ 1.4 million luxury townhouse with a wine cellar and a hot tub in Washington, D.C.”
The SCF was founded by former Senator Jim DeMint, who currently heads the Heritage Foundation. “Mitch McConnell is, to me, the essence of the problem in D.C.,” said Drew Ryun, head of the Madison Project. McConnell would like groups primarying incumbents like him and Senator Pat Roberts (R-KS) to fade into the woodwork, and hopes they will if defeated in this election cycle: “I know this: Politics doesn’t like losers. If you don’t have anything to point to, it is kind of hard to keep it going.”
Speaking of losing, Mitchie: any comment on Karl Rove’s 2012 stellar track record? You remember, that 1 (one) percent victory rate for his American Crossroads PAC?
I believe it’s time for brave Mitch to return to the private sector. I support his conservative challenger, Matt Bevin for Senate in Kentucky. If you’ve had enough of Pillsbury Doughboys like McConnell, I urge you to help out too.
Hat tip: BadBlue News