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In response to:

Semper Sebelius

Ed52 Wrote: Apr 14, 2014 11:46 AM
Our Fearless Leaders were never serious about the alleged reasons for the ACA. Sebelius looks like a loyal scape goat and might never have really been in the loop for decisions about what the program was or which campaign donors were to be hired to reinvent the wheel. This is shown by the actions of those "brilliant folks" who, in their infinite and righteous wisdom, not bothering to understand the complexities of the medical reimbursement systems, didn't bother to include input from the real, working providers - those that would actually perform "medicine" in the various formats available - probably because they would have added reality and other inconveniences to the plans. They also (a) confused health care with medical insurance, (b) disregarded any similarity between slavery and requiring medical professionals to provide services to any individual for whatever amount the government deems sufficient and (c) exempted themselves from negative aspects of the system. Furthermore, if the stated intent was true and a real, functioning system was desired then base models existed: both eBay and Amazon could create modified copies of their systems for the ACA - their robust, tested systems allow for a very secure environment with very high volume of simultaneous users shopping and paying for for third-party products. The additional data to be collected through adjunct modules would have been developmentally time consuming not only because of the security aspects and related testing surrounding a series of almost trivial processes and interfaces but because of the waits and delays caused by the bureaucratic entities at the other end of the interfaces . The roll-out would have been on-time, tested, within budget and functional.
In response to:

Brandeis Bows to Islamic Censorship

Ed52 Wrote: Apr 11, 2014 11:40 AM
It's ironic that institutions that were designed to be areas of open discussion, knowledge, debate and inquiry are succumbing to the same self-righteous censorship that characterized the actions of Bowlder and Comstock. In this case we see students and learned professors expanding their right to ignore a message into a demand that everyone be prevented from hearing a message. Their attitude is equivalent to saying "I know every nuance of what will be said. I am strong enough to understand and refute the message but I don't think you are so I will save you from yourself. No thanks are necessary, I am pleased to help. Really, think nothing of it. I'm serious: DO NOT THINK!"
In response to:

Bush Candor Could Win the Day

Ed52 Wrote: Apr 11, 2014 11:27 AM
The common core standards themselves are not really the problem - the problem lies with the implementation and the underlying motives and messages embedded in the materials being foisted on the schools and students. From the material I've seen our Fearless Leaders are subverting Common Core to create more ignorant, unaware voters. The most significant decline in education has occurred since the establishment of the Federal Dept of Education. those educrats are pushing Common Core to further stifle inquiry and curiosity. To further this cabal, the contracted cronies are businesses that control both the content of tests and the pool of remedial and coaching materials. It behooves the businesses to construct tests to guarantee mediocre to poor results in the beginning years so the remedial and coaching materials will sell well and will be proven to be invaluably beneficial over time as the subsequent tests will show. This factor get obfuscated when (a) political correctness drives the content and distracts from the larger intent and (b) people with no real world experience write answer choices that are vague or not mutually exclusive. The educrats can't afford to ever admit error or ulterior motives, much less ignorance, and will always ridicule suggestions of conspiracy.
Not being personally offended by those who disagree with one is a sign of a mature adult; such signs are not common among the perpetually indignant. Expressing indignation over a lack of universal acknowledgement, praise and accolades for one's position is also a sign of an inability to effectively use reason, logic and rhetoric to convince and persuade an intelligent audience willing to listen and question. Those who demand validation from both those who are in opposition and those who are willing to be merely tolerant and accepting are inherently unsure of the details and consequences of their positions and actions while being absolutely certain of their beloved slogans. .
In response to:

GM Doubles Down on Chevy Volt's Failure

Ed52 Wrote: Apr 10, 2014 11:58 AM
How many of the 58k Volts have been purchased by Federal agencies? How many have been required to be purchased through Federal contracts/grants? The answers are probably code word classified under Top Secret-Don'tAsk.
The tendency to select a candidate acceptable to the opposition is another topic.
Democrats vote for their candidates because they are "good enough". Republicans and Conservatives look at a candidate and withhold their vote if they disagree on on one issue even if they agree on six others. This is not conducive to long range success and is arguably suicidal to the Republican party. Acceptance of "good enough" is one way to give a Republican candidate a fighting chance.
In response to:

Taxing Life Away

Ed52 Wrote: Apr 09, 2014 11:18 AM
The problem with both a national sales tax and VAT is that they (a) would not (or not always) be a replacement for an income tax - they would (or inevitably) be an addition to an income tax and (b) increase the social engineering power through manipulation of tax exemptions and rates on products and services.
In response to:

Taxing Life Away

Ed52 Wrote: Apr 09, 2014 9:56 AM
A fair tax on individuals would be taxing a percentage of everything over 2,000 times federal minimum wage at the same rate regardless of source - no exemptions, no deductions other that 50% of Social Security benefits and charity. (Need to keep charity as long as Estate Taxes are in play). But a A fair tax implies removing the social engineering aspects of Congressional power - Congress Critters be greatly diminished if they couldn't bribe people to act through tax credits or be bribed by business interests. What also makes sense is stop being partners with businesses- taxes are based on profits. Taxing gross revenue (between half & 1%) would force all businesses to pay something, lower planning, accounting & legal costs and, if laws re perqs were changed, allow IRS to concentrate on personal income. Businesses could spend what they needed to and concentrate on business instead of tax factors. Why should the government suffer because a business converts profits into losses through creative international accounting transactions?
In response to:

The New Blacklist

Ed52 Wrote: Apr 08, 2014 11:19 AM
Freedom of Speech implies a Freedom to Offend and a Freedom to Ignore. The latter is not exercised enough - too many absurdities are taken seriously by too many people, primarily those of the politically correct persuasion paying too much attention to the perpetually indignant..
In response to:

A Faculty Revolution Against Free Speech

Ed52 Wrote: Apr 07, 2014 11:44 AM
1. That's Ernesto Guevara de la Serna, MD. As in sworn to: "First, do no harm" MD. 2. The feelings and impressions of well-meaning, "right-thinking" individuals safely entrenched in the protected world of Academia are paramount in believing they are correct and entitled to censor and remove opposing ideas. They believe they have an inherent right to never be discomfited for any reason. Anyone differing in opinion, belief or knowledge is not intelligent enough to have an independent thought and must be protected from themselves. Rational debate and argument is just too hard -- it not only requires logic, rhetorical skills and a sound knowledge of objective facts it requires a mutual willingness to listen, think and respond appropriately. Acting on feelings and mental constructs is much more comfortable and satisfying.
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