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Letting Obamacare fail means letting people suffer longer

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President Trump committed a terrible act of political cynicism today when he told White House reporters “We’ll let Obamacare fail and then Democrats will come to us and say ‘How do we fix it?” and followed that up suggesting that more Republicans will be elected in 2018.

This is unconscionable, because people in America are suffering and need relief right now, not in 2019.

To listen to Democrat talking points, you’d think that America was one giant hospital and everyone had pre-existing conditions requiring expensive and rare treatment. But everyone knows that’s simply not so.

Most people see a doctor because they have a common, acute, treatable condition, like the flu. Most people can easily get the prescription medicines they require at the local grocery store pharmacy. Most people don’t need all the “health” coverages mandated in Obamacare, and most people will never need rare, expensive treatments.

But we’re all paying for it.

Premiums are increasing at an unsustainable, double-digit rate, while benefits, choice of providers, and deductibles are shrinking dramatically. That means health care is costing the average family (not on public assistance) more.

I personally know families who simply stopped buying health insurance because they can’t afford it. They make deals with doctors they know, or just don’t go to the doctor, even to treat problems that should really require a doctor. They don’t want to sign up for Medicare since that limits choice even more.

I personally use Medi-Share, a Christian medical sharing ministry, which is exempt (thank God) from Obamacare regulations. I pay about half the premium I would be paying if I bought an individual plan.

At the small business I used to work for in management (and own a stake in one of the subsidiaries), I helped craft our insurance plans. Back in the mid-2000s, we hopped between carriers to get a low initial experience rate, then when the premium jumped, we’d jump again. By the time Obamacare hit, we had moved to a hybrid self-insured/high deductible health plan (HDHP) to help stabilize premiums. We didn’t like our employees paying hundreds of dollars a month only to shell out more when they need care.

Eventually, those HDHP plans went away, because Obamacare killed them. In 2013, we sold to a large multinational corporation, and they eventually integrated the employees into their big-company plan. I left in 2015, before that happened. The people I know who still work there are paying hundreds of dollars a month only to get a huge deductible, limited network plan–or they’re paying thousands a month to get what used to be normal coverage.

These are the people who are suffering. Those “corner cases” and sob stories make for selling newspapers and getting website clicks, and they make wonderful political grandstanding, but in fact they are not the problem. The problem started when government-social-engineers like Hillary Clinton (remember Hillarycare?) and Barack Obama believed they could turn the U.S. into Sweden or Canada, neither of which have the population or economy of California.

California’s legislature just punted on its own version of universal single-payer, because even they realized that it was impossible to pay for. (SB 562 would have cost $400 billion, more than twice the entire state budget.)

Obamacare was supposed to be a hybrid–a transition to allow every American to have health insurance and supposedly obtain health care. But health insurance and the number of people enrolled is a terrible measure of who can obtain care, at what cost, and at what quality or frequency.

But the Democrat talking points keep rolling on–22 million “will lose healthcare,” or is it 23 million? What about the 150 million that will lose healthcare benefits they used to have and in fact had grown accustomed to because they can no longer afford to pay for things they never use?

Obamacare created this mess, and now Republicans, who have the opportunity we’ve been waiting for the last seven years, the opportunity every Republican lawmaker campaigned on, the opportunity Trump campaigned on, have kicked every American voter to the curb.

They’ve failed at proper governing. The president failed to lead, and Congress failed to summon the fortitude to do what is necessary.

And now we’re at the end of the dead-end road called Failure Alley, and Trump had the nerve to say we will just let people suffer for a few more years.

There’s certain issues that every president can kick down the road, like Social Security entitlements (always predicted to be 15 years away from failure), Medicare, and the national debt. As long as the Treasury can print money, we can pay bills, and the public, like frogs in slowly boiling water, don’t feel it while the pot heats up.

Obamacare is not one of those issues.

We saw what happened to Obama when the Tea Party movement hit in 2010. Watch what will happen to Congress in 2018. It’s going to be very, very ugly, and we are going to end up with people much, much more populist and less conservative than the original movement.

The Trump-GOP establishment has already begun blaming conservatives for this debacle. They would rather work with Democrats and go to a treasury-bankrupting single-payer solution than helping Americans get reasonable, free market health insurance.

This is no longer a political issue. It hurts average Americans. Republicans won’t be able to explain this away, and neither will the president, who sees himself above party (he calls Republicans “they”).

In a supreme act of political selfishness and cynicism, our elected government has betrayed the people it purports to serve and has failed to correct the injury. America will not forget.

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Democrats

Democratic mega-donor Ed Buck arrested after third overdose at his residence

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Democratic mega-donor Ed Buck arrested after third overdose at his residence

When a second man died at Ed Buck’s home last year, we called on him to be investigated and arrested. But, as predicted, he was not. Now that a third man was overdosed but did not die, police have an eyewitness to the Democratic mega-donor’s penchant for injecting men with methamphetamine. Now, he’s been arrested.

Buck was arrested late Tuesday night and will be charged by the Los Angeles District Attorney’s office with running a “drug den” in which people come and exchange favors, likely sexual, for access to Buck’s drugs. Democrats who have received money from him in the past are scrambling to distance themselves from the progressive California “hero.”

Jasmyne Cannick, an activist and show personality who has been calling for Buck’s arrest from the beginning, could barely contain her excitement over the news.

Other Twitter reactions were as expected… harsh:

As Ed Buck prepares to face the judge Wednesday, those who have been calling for justice against this powerful man, such as Jasmyne Cannick, finally have hope that he will face the music for his alleged crimes against so many.

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Foreign Affairs

The Israel elections, explained for Americans

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The Israel elections explained for Americans

Many Americans are unfamiliar with how the Israeli elections work and what it takes to “win” them. Today’s election is no exception with many Americans simply waiting for the end results (which technically could be weeks away) or not having a concern about them at all. As noted before, these elections will have as big of an impact on our foreign policy as any foreign elections can have.

So, how do they work? Who won? What happens next? Let’s take a look at some answers…

Israelis vote for parties, not candidates

The first big deviation from America’s system of government is that Members of the Knesset (MKs) are selected by the parties, not the people. The people vote for the parties, and those parties are given seats in the Knesset based on their percentage of the vote. The threshold is currently 3.25% to get some of the 120 Knesset seats. Those below the threshold do not get a seat, which is important for the last election in April and Tuesday’s election. More on that later.

The two major parties – the conservative Likud Party and the center-left Blue and White Party – only make up about one-fourth to one-third of the voting population. The next tier of parties are the centrist Yisrael Beitenu Party and the Israeli-Arab coalition of parties, the United Arab List, which is considered to be generally to the left in policies despite holding conservative Muslim values socially. The other parties fight to get whatever seats are left over.

Party leaders are chosen to fill the MK seats as well as cabinet positions, with the party most likely to form a coalition government chosen by the President.

Forming a coalition government

61 MKs are necessary to support a Prime Minister and form a government. Since no single party has every had more than 50% of the vote, a coalition of like-minded parties join together to recommend one leader as Prime Minister.

In April, Likud’s Benjamin Netanyahu was unable to form a coalition because Avigdor Lieberman and his Yisrael Beitenu Party refused to stay in the conservative coalition because they wanted to pull protections for orthodox Jews from having to serve in the military. Other members of the coalition wouldn’t budge. Instead of risking the baton being passed to Benny Gantz and the center-left Blue and White Party, Netanyahu called for new elections, which is what happened Tuesday.

Exit polls indicate they’re in the same boat with neither Likud nor Blue and White able to form a government without Yisrael Beitenu, which seems to have expanded their seat count. Netanyahu had hopes the smaller conservative parties could have broken the threshold and given him a few extra votes for a conservative government. Gantz hoped the Blue and White would have a decisive victory and claim more seats than Likud, potentially giving them the floor even if his coalition was smaller. It looks as if neither happened.

Liberman is calling for a centrist unity government, but there are challenges that may prevent this. Likud would have to abandon the members of their conservative Zionist coalition by removing the protections against military service requirements for ultra-orthodox Jews. Blue and White has indicated they would not form a unity government as long as Netanyahu was leading Likud.

Unless things are very different from the exit polls, some very tenacious negotiations are ahead behind the scenes.

One way to avoid stalemate

With Likud and Blue and White both needing Yisrael Beitenu’s seats to form a government, it would seem likely that both sides will be making offers. But there’s another option. If Likud’s coalition is close enough, they can go to individual MKs and seek defections in exchange for positions. This may seem like a hard option for conservatives as it would mean inserting progress-minded people into positions of power, but their coalition is insufficient to form a government otherwise.

It’s inconceivable that a single issue about protections for the ultra-orthodox would make the militant Lieberman essentially crown Gantz as Prime Minister, but that may be the case. This is why it’s important for Netanyahu, if he’s chosen to form the government, to act quickly. There will be pressure on members of his own party to dump him and form a unity government with Gantz and Lieberman, and while they have claimed to be loyal to their leader, the risk of losing power overall may sway them.

It’s time for Netanyahu to take decisive action and pull together 61 MKs before his grasp of his party and his nation slips away. It could be disastrous for Israel with an aggressive Iran, emboldened, Hezbollah, and unruly Gaza if Gantz is put in charge.

We are currently forming the American Conservative Movement. If you are interested in learning more, we will be sending out information in a few weeks.

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Democrats

Conservatives need Elizabeth Warren to win the Democratic nomination

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Conservatives need Elizabeth Warren to win the Democratic nomination

In politics, the idea of killing two birds with one stone is highly sought after. There are a ton of birds in DC, and knocking off more than one with a single action saves time, money, and energy. For conservatives, the two birds we need to knock off are the Democratic candidate who will eventually take on the President in the general election and the rising embrace of socialism among those who believe the Democratic establishment is done.

Beating either Senators Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren would do the trick. But as the Sanders campaign seems to be sinking, the Warren campaign is surging. So it’s time for us to focus our efforts on learning everything we can about Warren and her policies in hopes she can win the nomination.

If former Vice President Joe Biden gets the nomination, President Trump should have no problem beating him. But doing so will only invigorate the radical progressives in the Democratic Party who believe their guy, Sanders, should have won in 2016. They believe the Democratic Establishment stole the election for Hillary Clinton. They will believe the same thing if Warren is beaten this year by Biden.

Sanders’ defeat to the Establishment launched the current popularity of socialism. A Warren defeat at the hands of Biden would make the socialist movement even stronger for 2024. But if President Trump crushes Warren, as he almost certainly would, then the socialists can no longer claim they were cheated. They won’t be able to play victim to the Democratic Establishment. They will have put up their chosen candidate and lost fair and square.

Socialism, as a result, will die in the political womb that it’s currently in.

Some fear Warren’s credentials and her ability to galvanize the people with her speeches. But as long as she’s promoting Medicare-for-All, the Green New Deal, and other radical policy proposals, she should be summarily trampled on by the lucid electorate in 2020. There’s no need to fear Warren. If anything, the only thing we should fear are the sheep who could fall for her sales pitch. If hat happens and Warren were to win in 2020, then America will get what it deserves for allowing the sheep to be led to the slaughter. As for the rest of us, we will be busy trying to rebuild after the debacle.

As much as I don’t like the prospects of a nation under a President Warren, I’m confident enough in the President’s campaign and the awareness of the American people to recognize the existential threat her policies represent.

We are currently forming the American Conservative Movement. If you are interested in learning more, we will be sending out information in a few weeks.

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