How do you like Matt Bevin now? As a gubernatorial candidate, he promised to end Kentucky's Medicaid expansion; as governor, he is just trying to "fix" it

A lot of conservatives were very upset when Senator Mitch McConnell (R-KY) defeated businessman Matt Bevin in the Republican senatorial primary in 2014. Senator McConnell, in line to become Senate Majority Leader if the Republicans captured the chamber, wasn’t a true conservative, while Mr Bevin most certainly was. But, when The Washington Post praises now Governor Bevin, you know that something is wrong:

Mr. Bevin’s good sense

January 3

When Republican Matt Bevin won the Kentucky governor’s race last year, 400,000 low-income people seemed doomed to lose their health coverage. An ardent Obamacare opponent, Mr. Bevin swore during his campaign to roll back the state’s Medicaid expansion. The expansion had extended coverage to nearly half a million Kentuckians, halving the state’s uninsured rate, under a provision of President Obama’s signature health-care law. This reversal would have added Kentucky to the list of 20 states irrationally refusing federal Medicaid money to cover needy people, and it would have put pressure on Republican leaders in other states to withdraw coverage, too.

Thankfully, common sense prevailed. The governor announced Wednesday that he would seek to reform Kentucky’s Medicaid program rather than amputate it. To some conservatives, this will no doubt seem like more evidence that social benefits, once extended, can never be taken away. That impression would make more sense if the case against expanding Medicaid were stronger. Instead, Mr. Bevin’s announcement reflects two crucial points. First, state leaders interested in governing rather than simply campaigning have no reasonable basis on which to reject federal Medicaid funding. Second, because the federal government is willing to allow states to experiment with Medicaid’s design within their borders, conservative politicians have the opportunity to reform as well as expand the federal coverage program. Mr. Bevin is embracing this option, and so should Republicans in the states that continue to lag behind, such as Virginia.

There’s more at the link, and MSNBC is chortling as well:

As the Affordable Care Act has taken root, its implementation has moved in only one direction: forward. The health care law has seen more consumers, more Medicaid expansion, and more coverage. Aside from occasional, pointless repeal votes in Congress, there’s been no meaningful effort to go backwards on “Obamacare.”

Which is why Kentucky created such an interesting test. The Bluegrass State has been a national leader in ACA implementation, slashing its uninsured rate, and excelling in overhauling its health system. The results have been amazing for state residents. Republican Gov. Matt Bevin, however, vowed to make Kentucky the first state to reverse course, starting with the elimination of Medicaid expansion.

The assumption has long been that it’s far more difficult to take Americans’ health care benefits away than to block those benefits from existing in the first place. Would Bevin prove these assumptions wrong? Would he keep his campaign promise and scrap coverage for thousands of Kentucky families?

It now appears the answer to both of these questions is no. The Lexington Herald Leader reported late last week:

Gov. Matt Bevin says he intends to draft a plan to overhaul the state’s expanded Medicaid program by the middle of next year, one that could be implemented by the start of 2017. […]

He said Wednesday that his plan will be fashioned after the one in Indiana, which uses waivers from the federal government that allow states to create their own system for providing coverage to the poor.

“Indiana’s is the model that frankly is most likely that we will look to replicate,” the governor added last week.

The trouble for Bevin’s right-wing allies, of course, is that Indiana is already a Medicaid-expansion state. The new Kentucky governor, in other words, is planning to make the transition from Medicaid expansion to a slightly less generous version of Medicaid expansion.

This isn’t at all what the Tea Party Republican promised as a candidate early last year, but there’s apparently an important difference between vowing to take away health care benefits and actually following through on the threat.

Mr Bevin has been Governor of the Bluegrass State for slightly less than a month now, and he has just broken his primary campaign promise. Hey, conservatives, how do you like him now?

Governor Bevin’s plan isn’t complete yet, but what we do know is that he plans on reducing the Commonwealth’s exposure to increased Medicaid costs, but still retain the Medicaid expansion. Had state Attorney General Jack Conway, the Democrat’s nominee, won the election, his actions on former Governor Steve Beshear’s Medicaid expansion might have differed at the margins from what Mr Bevin is planning, but in the overall picture, they would ave been indistinguishable: the Medicaid expansion would remain in place.

So, when conservatives say that Senator McConnell has abandoned them, and Kentuckians should have replaced him with Mr Bevin, it seems to me that Kentuckians took the right decision in 2014: Mr Bevin would have been indistinguishable from Mr McConnell in the Senate, and he’d have been a very junior member of the majority, rather than the Majority Leader.

I have already said that all of the Republicans are RINOs when it comes to Obaminablecare:

Let me be very blunt here: the Republicans have surrendered, completely, on the principle (that the federal government should be responsible for guaranteeing health care), and are simply arguing about how to achieve the goal. Is the Obysmalcare legislation poorly crafted? Certainly it is! Does the Obaminablecare foul up our health care system? Absotively, posilutely it does! But all that the Republicans are arguing is how to improve the delivery of socialized health care, and not whether health care should be socialized in the first place.

And I’ll be blunt again: our choice is between two fundamental positions:

  1. The government, at some level, is ultimately responsible for insuring that every American has access to health care; or
  2. The government is not responsible for seeing to it that everyone has access to health care, which necessarily includes the consequence that some people who need health care and cannot afford it will not get it.

Now, I am an [insert slang term for the rectum here], and I am perfectly willing to return to a system in which those people who cannot pay for their health care do not receive it, even if that means they will die in the street due to the lack. That is the natural result of not guaranteeing health care for everyone, and I am willing to both admit it and support that.

But the Republican candidates don’t seem to be willing to take that position — at least, not publicly — and thus they have been left with agreeing with the premise of the Affordable Care Act, but simply differing on how to achieve the objective. Doesn’t that make all of them RINOs?

When Matt Bevin, Matt Bevin of all people! caves in and surrenders on the principle that the government should be responsible for guaranteeing health care, we might as well face it: it’s here to stay, and it doesn’t matter what the Republican presidential candidates say, what any Republican says, guaranteed health care is here to stay, the guarantee will never be ended, and all that Republicans can do now is argue about the best way to fulfill the guarantee.
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Cross-posted on RedState.

I told you so! Never trust the left to safeguard your rights

Just three months ago, we pointed out the nefarious ways that the left will seek to restrict your freedom:

The left, the HITECH Act, and gun control

We have previously noted the requirement for searchability in computerized medical records, something mandated by the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health Act, abbreviated HITECH Act, which was enacted under Title XIII of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (Pub.L. 111–5), the official name of the porkulus stimulus bill. We’ve noted before the urge to control in our friends on the left. It seems that everywhere you look, the left want to add another little bit of government control, for our own good, of course, because we really can’t be trusted to run our lives ourselves.

Now, from Robert Stacey Stacy McCain:

When Crazy Is Against the Law …

Posted on | January 5, 2016 |

. . . only outlaws will be crazy:

Delivering on its promise to deliver “common sense” gun control, the Obama administration on Monday finalized a rule that enables health care providers to report the names of mentally ill patients to an FBI firearms background check system.
The action was one of a series of steps that President Barack Obama had called for in January 2013 in the wake of the Newtown, Conn., shootings to curb gun violence, but the rule was not published until today.

While the 1993 Brady law prohibits gun ownership by individuals who have been involuntarily committed, found incompetent to stand trial or otherwise deemed by a court to be a danger to themselves or others, federal health care privacy rules prohibited doctors and other providers from sharing information without the consent of their patients.

Under the rule, which takes effect next month, for the first time health providers can disclose the information to the background check system without legal repercussions.
“The disclosure is restricted to limited demographic and certain other information needed for NICS purposes,” the rule states.

So when you use your ObamaCare insurance to get free mental health treatment, the doctor will report you to the FBI.

And Mr McCain even added an update:

Apparatchiks in the Politburo have been busy, comrades:

The White House released a fact-sheet Jan. 4 which previews the executive gun control Obama will unveil Tuesday and one aspect of the new controls is the inclusion of “information from the Social Security Administration in the background check system about beneficiaries who are prohibited from possessing a firearm.” . . .
According to the White House executive order preview:

Current law prohibits individuals from buying a gun if, because of a mental health issue, they are either a danger to themselves or others or are unable to manage their own affairs. The Social Security Administration (SSA) has indicated that it will begin the rulemaking process to ensure that appropriate information in its records is reported to NICS. The reporting that SSA, in consultation with the Department of Justice, is expected to require will cover appropriate records of the approximately 75,000 people each year who have a documented mental health issue, receive disability benefits, and are unable to manage those benefits because of their mental impairment, or who have been found by a state or federal court to be legally incompetent.

Now, if only they could ban these kooks from Tumblr . . .

Put all of that together, and we have an Administration which wants to:

  1. violate patient privacy by allowing doctors to report cases of suspected mental illness, without any due process of law; and
  2. which has required that all medical records be made available electronically, and has taken steps to insure that they are searchable.

The Fourteenth Amendment states, in Section 1, “No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.”

The Obama Administration is seeking to get around the provision that the rights of American citizens can be abridged on through due process of law. Instead, President Obama and the left wish to deny Americans their constitutional rights via administrative action. The left, of course, applauds this; those of us with some actual sense realize just how dangerous this is.

#CarlyFiorina and the President’s executive orders on gun control

From The Hill:

Fiorina: Obama ‘lawless’ with executive order on guns

By Bradford Richardson | January 03, 2016, 10:43 am

According to Carly Fiorina, not only is President Obama’s planned executive action on guns misguided and reckless, it is also blatantly unconstitutional.

“President Obama has been a lawless president in his use of executive orders, whether those executive orders are around immigration or whether those executive orders are around gun control,” the GOP presidential hopeful said Sunday on CNN’s “State of the Union.”

“And it is delusional, dangerous, not to mention unconstitutional for Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton to continue to talk about climate change and gun control in the wake of a Paris terrorist attack, a San Bernardino terrorist attack, instead of talking about a plan to defeat [the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria],” she added.

The former business executive encouraged Obama to enforce the laws already on the books rather than issue new regulations.

“The thing the president should be doing on gun control… is enforcing the laws that we have,” she said. “We have long lists of criminals who own guns, who routinely purchase guns. We know who these people are, and we are not prosecuting any of them.”

“I think we need to enforce the laws we have, and we are not doing so.”

There’s a bit more at the link, and I suppose that I could have picked any of the Republican presidential candidates to make this point, but Mrs Fiorina happens to be my personal favorite, and it gives me yet another excuse to link to her campaign website and encourage campaign donations to her.

Carly Fiorina

One thing that the President and the Democrats and the left are trying to do is push the meme that the President simply has to take action, because the Congress has not. Well, that’s bovine feces! As the late Dr Vincent Davis, then Director of the Patterson School of Diplomacy and International Commerce pointed out in one of the few lessons which has stayed with me since my ancient days in college, if someone has the power to do something, and chooses not to do it, then he has taken an action just as surely as if he had done whatever action it was. If the Congress has not passed any new gun control legislation, it is because a majority of the Members are satisfied with the laws as they currently stand! By not passing any new legislation to restrict our natural rights as recognized by the Second Amendment, the Congress has taken the action of not agreeing with the President, something perfectly within Congress’ rights.

Robert Stacey Stacy McCain has been only one of the latest to point out that gun control legislation is not doing what the left have claimed it would do, noting that Chicago, which has some of the most restrictive gun control ordinances in the country, and was was the plaintiff in Chicago v McDonald, the 2010 Supreme Court case in which the Court recognized that the Second Amendment recognized an individual right to keep and bear arms,1 is still “Murder City, USA,” having recorded 468 murders in 2015. If gun control laws actually worked, actually did what the proponents claim they will do, then our big cities ought to be the safest places around, not the most dangerous.

But, make no mistake about it: gun control laws could work, but only if they were mandatory gun confiscation laws, if they took away our Second Amendment rights. Gun control could work if and only if all firearms were confiscated, and the left know this, and, despite what they say, that is their goal!

Oh, it wouldn’t apply to them: Hillary Clinton and Barack Hussein Obama and the rest of the left elite would still retain their armed bodyguards, but us commoners, nope, not for us!

And while it would, technically, apply to the criminals, the criminals wouldn’t surrender their guns, which would mean that those weapons would be confiscated only as they were used, and found by the police. So, gun control laws would work, but only after a good, long time of the law-abiding folks being disarmed and only the predators having weapons, but the left don’t care about that, not in the slightest.
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  1. The Court held that the Second Amendment recognized an individual right two years previously, in District of Columbia v Heller, but the city of Chicago claimed that Heller restricted only the federal government, and that state and local governments could restrict the individual’s rights based on local conditions. The Supreme Court slapped down that nonsense, applying the Second Amendment to state and local action as well.

Rule 5 Blogging: The Lions of the Jordan A much longer one than usual, with stories about the IDF's experience with women serving in combat units

It’s the weekend and time, once again, for THE FIRST STREET JOURNAL’S version of Rule 5 Blogging. Robert Stacey Stacy McCain described Rule 5 as posting photos of pretty women somewhat déshabillé, but, on this site, our Rule 5 Blogging doesn’t put up pictures of Natalie Portman in her summer clothes, but women, in full military gear, serving their countries in the armed forces. The terribly sexist authors on this site celebrate strong women, women who can take care of themselves and take care of others, women who have been willing to put their lives on the line in some not-so-friendly places, women who truly do have the “We can do it!” attitude.

Israel recently formed the Arayot Hayarden, the Lions of the Jordan Battalion, the second combat battalion in the IDF with both male and female combat soldiers. The new battalion will part of the security forces in Central Command, which includes the West Bank. As in the Caracal battalion, the first mixed battalion in the army, roughly half of the combat soldiers in Arayot Hayarden will be women.

I originally ran this story last August, but am rerunning it now, with commentary from the IDF at the end.

From the Lions of Jordan Battalion swearing-in ceremony

Continue reading ‘Rule 5 Blogging: The Lions of the Jordan A much longer one than usual, with stories about the IDF’s experience with women serving in combat units’ »

From Around the Blogroll

From The Wall Street Journal:

Obama Ready to Act Alone on Gun Control

The president, who has bypassed Congress on issues ranging from immigration to climate change, is preparing to take executive action on gun control, including expanding background checks on buyers

By Colleen McCain Nelson and Gary Fields | Updated January 1, 2016 7:41 p.m. ET

HONOLULU—President Barack Obama, who has bypassed a reluctant Congress on issues ranging from immigration to climate change, is preparing to take executive action on gun control, including expanding background checks on buyers.

But even as he gets set to act, Mr. Obama has only limited levers he can pull without Congress, and any unilateral action will face hurdles similar to those it has encountered during earlier attempts to tighten access to guns.

The president plans to meet Monday with Attorney General Loretta Lynch before moving ahead with several gun-related executive actions that could also increase the number of accused domestic abusers barred from purchasing firearms.

Current federal law prohibits people convicted of domestic violence against a spouse, ex-spouse or cohabiting partner from purchasing a gun. But the law doesn’t extend to violence against current or former dating partners, convicted stalkers, or those with temporary restraining orders.

Mr. Obama’s past efforts haven’t always yielded the intended result. Executive actions—or even the specter of executive actions—often have put more firearms in circulation, because gun sales climb amid fears the administration will find a way to limit them.

And that’s a perfectly reasonable response: if someone is interested in owning a firearm, why wouldn’t he go ahead and make his purchase if he believes that the federal government is going to take away his right to do so? Many people have noted that Barack Hussein Obama is the best firearms salesman that the industry has ever had.

The latest attempts to tighten gun rules are expected to be narrow in scope. Previous unilateral White House actions underscored how Mr. Obama would need Congress’ help to impose a broad overhaul of the nation’s gun laws.

Most recently, Congress rejected Mr. Obama’s proposal to bar individuals on certain federal terrorism watch lists from purchasing guns. Lawmakers have also declined to require background checks on all firearms sold at gun shows.

In the wake of the massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School, the president in 2013 set in motion 23 executive actions on guns. Nearly three years later, the effects of many of those efforts range from inconclusive to inconsequential or incomplete.

President Obama and the left take the position that the Congress has not acted on gun control legislation. However, when the Congress has the power to act, and chooses not to do so, it has taken an action nevertheless. If lawmakers have “declined to require background checks on all firearms sold at gun shows,” that is because they are satisfied with the law as it already exists.

The American people, disgusted with the actions of the Obama Administration and the Democrats, chose in 2010 to elect an House of Representatives controlled by the Republicans, most of whom ran on, among other things, stopping further encroachment on the Second Amendment rights of law-abiding American citizens. In the 2012 elections, the voters continued to keep the House in Republican hands, and in 2014 chose to not only keep the House in Republican hands, but gave the GOP the majority in the Senate as well. These were candidates who ran on a promise to protect the right of the American people to keep and bear arms! I’m sorry — OK, OK, not really: I’m not sorry at all! — that the President doesn’t like this, but it’s pretty difficult to criticize congressmen who are keeping their campaign promises.

And now, on to the blogroll!

The Republican Party is growing in Kentucky

The Republican Party of Kentucky is reaching out:

Deadline Approaching for Participating in GOP Presidential Caucus

There are just two days until the voter registration deadline for Kentuckians who want to vote in the state’s first ever presidential caucus on March 5. Only voters who are registered as Republicans by December 31 will be eligible to vote in the caucus.

To register to vote or change party affiliation, a voter registration card can be obtained and submitted at a county clerk’s office, or it can be downloaded at elect.ky.gov and mailed to the State Board of Elections.

The Republican Party of Kentucky’s governing body decided in August to select its preference for the 2016 Republican presidential nomination through a caucus instead of the usual presidential primary. On March 5, Republican voters will come to caucus locations anytime between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. to vote for their Republican nominee for president by secret paper ballot. The caucus will give Kentucky Republicans an earlier say and possibly more influence in choosing the next president.

“Kentucky is getting more attention from presidential candidates and seeing more campaign activity here than ever before,” said state party Chairman Mac Brown. “The decision to hold our first ever presidential caucus has given Kentucky Republicans a greater role in selecting our nominee for president.”

To date, nine candidates have filed to be on the caucus ballot: Jeb Bush, Ben Carson, Ted Cruz, John Kasich, Rand Paul, Marco Rubio, Donald Trump, Chris Christie, and Carly Fiorina. The filing deadline for candidates is January 7. Kentucky’s delegates to the Republican National Convention will be awarded proportionally to candidates based on the results of the caucus.

Brown urged Democratic and Independent voters to switch their party registration to Republican before the December 31 deadline.

“Last month, thousands of Democrats and Independents supported Matt Bevin as he won 106 out of 120 counties in his successful bid for governor. I invite them to join the Republican Party, vote in the March 5 presidential caucus, and work with us to move Kentucky forward,” stated Brown.

Since November 2008, Republican voter registration in Kentucky has grown by nearly 207,000 voters, while Democratic registration has grown by just over 20,000.

Republican voters can learn more about the caucus by visiting the state party’s caucus website at www.rpk.org/caucus.

Now is the time for the Kentucky Republican Party to capitalize on Governor Bevin’s victory last November. Kentucky is the last Southern state in which the Republicans don’t control both chambers of the state legislature, but the state party is making a strong bid to overturn the Democrats 50-46 advantage in the state House of Representatives. Alas! Though the Bluegrass State is my once and future home, I’m not living there now, so I cannot participate in the caucuses.

The state GOP is making the right moves in encouraging voters to switch parties. I can still remember Dr Malcolm Jewell, a political science professor back in the dark ages — the early 1970s — at the University of Kentucky teaching us that the number one indicator of a person’s party identification was his parents’ party identification, and that helped keep the South Democratic for a long time after they went Republican in presidential voting. But, as another UK PoliSci professor, Mickey East, used to say, tempus is fugiting, and the notion that the media have uncritically accepted, that Southern Democrats switched to the GOP is misleading; what really happened is that the children of some Southern Democrats became Republicans before developing strong Democratic party loyalty, and older Democrats were steadily going to their eternal rewards. It is the next generation of Southern voters who have become Republicans. With an increased Republican population, the state GOP now has the opportunity to bring over those younger, but still moderate to conservative Southern Democrats who are Democrats because their parents were, over to the Republican Party.

I spotted the story thanks to Carly for America, Carly Fiorina’s SuperPAC site, which noted that Mrs Fiorina filed for the Kentucky Republican Party’s presidential caucus. Mr and Mrs Fiorina appeared on Fox News last night an hour and a half before midnight:

I apologize for the commercial included with the embedding, but that’s how television networks pay their bills, and since Fox News is allowing embedding of its stories for free, it’s only reasonable that I tolerate the advertisements as compensation. As a believer in the free market and capitalism, The First Street Journal also accepts advertising, though our revenues have been pitiful. :(

Awww, I have disappointed the Democrats!

I got an e-mail from Debbie Whatshername Schultz:

DemocratsJoin us.
Dana —

One of my favorite parts of my job is meeting with supporters all over the country who are helping to elect more Democrats next year. And usually, I’m talking to people whose lives would be seriously affected — and not for the better — if we let Republicans undo all the work we’ve done: Health care reform, tax cuts for the middle class, marriage equality, equal pay provisions, progress on climate change — the list of progress that would be rolled back under a Republican president just goes on and on.

But here’s the thing: We can’t hold Republicans at bay and elect Democrats in 2016 without your help, Dana. So I wanted to make sure you had the chance to get your support on the record before the year ends. Here’s what we have on file for (you):

OFFICIAL 2015 RECORD (Click here to update)
NAME: Dana
EMAIL: (Deleted)
TOTAL 2015 DONATIONS: $0

Right now, we need 13 people from Jim Thorpe to step up before our most important fundraising deadline of the year tomorrow at midnight. So if you can, pitch in $3 or more to support Democrats who know what’s at stake and will fight every single day — not only to keep the progress we’ve made, but also to move us forward instead of backward — and we’ll put you on the list of official 2016 Victory Donors.
If you’ve saved your payment information, your donation will go through immediately.

[Donation buttons deleted: I have no desire to make it any easier for anyone to donate to the Democrats!]

I’m so glad you’re in this fight with us. It’s a thrill to see folks like you so energized and ready to elect Democrats, because we’ve got lots of work to do, and we can’t do any of it without you.

So thank you. Really.

Debbie

Debbie Wasserman Schultz
Chair
Democratic National Committee

——–
If you’ve made a recent online contribution, contributed by check or by mail, or made a purchase at store.democrats.org, this may not be reflected in your online donor record — but thank you for your support!

I certainly hope that it is true that they “can’t hold Republicans at bay and elect Democrats in 2016 without (my personal) your help,” because, since they will not get my help, that means they lose . . . which means that the country wins. And I am certainly proud of the fact that, to the Democrats, my TOTAL 2015 DONATIONS: $0. In fact, let me define that more precisely: my total donation to the Democrats is $0.00!

Instead, I will take the opportunity to donate to the Republican candidate of my choice, Carly Fiorina, and if you click on the button to the left, you can help as well. Right now, Mrs Fiorina is trailing fairly badly in the polls, and that must be hurting her campaign fund raising, but I’ll do what I can do to help. If Mrs Fiorina is not the candidate of your choice, then I urge you to consider contributing to the Republican candidate you do support; all of the remaining Republican candidates’ websites are linked in the right hand side bar.

After the failing presidency of Barack Hussein Obama, our country desperately needs someone who will take the tiller and put our rudderless foreign policy back on the right course; we need someone who understands economics, understands business, and understands foreign policy and the threats to our country and to freedom in the world that we face. Carly Fiorina is that someone, the best someone out there running for President. But make no mistake about it: any of the Republicans running would fit that description better than any of the Democrats in the race.

The liberal way to deal with illegal immigration Don't tell me that the left don't know what they're doing

From The Wall Street Journal:

Go Live Elsewhere, We’re Cutting Carbon Here

The Newhall Ranch project near Los Angeles is green but not green enough for the antidevelopment crowd.

By Allysia Finley | Dec. 27, 2015 6:40 p.m. ET

Earlier this month California Gov. Jerry Brown promised to cut greenhouse-gas emissions to 80% below 1990 levels by 2050. This goal will be nearly impossible to achieve with California’s current population, projected to grow by 30% over the next 35 years to 50 million. So ecovangelists are trying to block any economic development that could help support more people.

The Newhall Ranch project in north Los Angeles County, which aims to provide housing for nearly 60,000 people as well as tens of thousands of jobs at stores, schools and recreational centers, is the most recent target. With energy-efficient lighting, comprehensive recycling, bike trails and drought-tolerant landscaping, the 12,000-acre planned community would be a green Levittown. But the proposed development—one of the biggest in state history—has been under siege from its inception in 1994 by environmental activists.

The California Supreme Court recently rejected Newhall’s final environmental-impact report. The court’s legally nebulous decision could delay construction for years—and cast a pall over future development.

The article deals primarily with the roadblocks and lawfare the environmentalists are using to block development, but this telling part at the end:

Green activists have long sought to block new development—and California housing costs are the highest in the country due to the mismatch between supply and demand. The median house price in the Los Angeles metro area is $507,000 compared with $210,000 in Dallas, $290,000 in Miami, $388,000 in Washington, D.C., and $412,000 in New York.

Housing costs have helped to drive middle- and low-income residents out of the state. Newhall Ranch appears to be one more human sacrifice on the altar of the greater environmental good.

The result of this case, and the ones which follow it, ought to be obvious: by reducing the construction of new housing stock while the Pyrite State’s population continues to grow means that the wealthier Californians will be able to have nicer houses, while the riff-raff middle and working classes will be stuck with aging and frequently dilapidated housing, or densely populated apartment buildings. Not only will this make moving into California far more difficult for illegal immigrants, but it will segregate the wealthier folks even more distantly from all of those undesirables. Just because they appreciate the fact that there is someone there to serve them their lattes doesn’t mean that they want to see them in their neighborhoods. The racial segregation in New York City, one of the bastions of political liberalism, has been noted many times before. New York and Los Angeles are the only two American cities which exhibit hypersegregation between whites and Hispanics.1 Did the GOP carry those two cities in 2008 or 2012?

Now, let’s be honest here: the “ecovangelists,” as the editorial writer for the Journal called them, are not working-class Hispanics, or black Americans trying to scrape by, or white hourly workers. Those people might care about the environment, but they are all facing the more practical and pressing problems of keeping a roof over their heads and food on their tables, and simply don’t have the time to engage in organizing and protesting and filing lawsuits. The ecovangelists at the head of all of this are people, almost all white, who are well-off enough that they aren’t worried about the median housing prices in Los Angeles, and do have the time to push this stuff. If you asked them, why they’d most certainly say that they aren’t racist or classist or sexist or homophobic or whateverist is the biggest concern today; they are good and liberal and oh-so-very-multicultural, and are offended and indignant that anyone would even question that about them.

But what they say doesn’t matter nearly so much as what they do, and what they do is to push policies which have resulted in the good, liberal ecovangelists living in prosperous, often gated, little communities, where they are kept separate from the kinds of people who cut their grass and run their daycare facilities and serve their lunches. Those communities might not be strictly segregated by race, but they are very much segregated by wealth, and that means, de facto, they are segregated by race. A few very successful black or Hispanic families might be welcomed, but the disparate economic results of the various ethnic groups in our society insure that such neighborhoods will remain just as segregated as any Southern town in the 1940s.2

The left might be very supportive of the hard-working immigrants who unfortunately lack documentation, because they are liberals and sympathetic to the plight of the poor. It’s just that they don’t particularly want those people living in their neighborhoods.
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Cross-posted on RedState.
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  1. Rima Wilkes; John Iceland (2004). “Hypersegregation in the Twenty First Century”. Demography (Population Association of America) 41 (1): 23–361. ISSN 0070-3370. JSTOR 1515211. OCLC 486373184.
  2. A personal note: I grew up in a small town in the South, but the most segregated area I ever saw was New Castle County, Delaware, when I lived there for two years.

Rule 5 Blogging: American Servicewomen in Art

It’s the weekend and time, once again, for THE FIRST STREET JOURNAL’S version of Rule 5 Blogging. Robert Stacey Stacy McCain described Rule 5 as putting pictures of pretty women somewhat déshabillé, but, on this site, our Rule 5 Blogging doesn’t put up pictures of Gwyneth Paltrow, whom your Editor agrees is the Most Beautiful Woman in the World,1 in her summer clothes, but women, in full military gear, serving their countries in the armed forces. The terribly sexist authors on this site celebrate strong women, women who can take care of themselves and take care of others, women who have been willing to put their lives on the line in some not-so-friendly places, women who truly do have the “We can do it!” attitude.

This week, something different: the depiction of military women in art:

PFC M Lisa, United States Army, on duty in Afghanistan. (However, the artist got the American flag wrong; the flag patch is worn on the right shoulder.)

Continue reading ‘Rule 5 Blogging: American Servicewomen in Art’ »

  1. Well, second most beautiful, behind my darling bride.

From Around the Blogroll

From RedState:

Washington Post Gets Its Leg Tingling Over Obama’s Christian Faith

By: streiff (Diary) | December 26th, 2015 at 10:48 AM

Earlier in the week, the Washington Post, the same paper that published a cartoon representing Sen. Ted Cruz’s (R-TX) two young daughters as organ-grinder monkeys, wrote a lengthy, fawning, fellating story titled: The quiet impact of Obama’s Christian faith. Long story short — you’d be excused for not reading the piece — is that Obama failed because Americans just aren’t good enough to deserve him.

Obama did not grow up in a religious household and became a practicing Christian as an adult. He has written more extensively about his spiritual awakening than almost any other modern president, addressing it in two books before he was elected to the White House and in more than a dozen speeches since.

His faith had been central to his identity as a new kind of Democrat who would bring civility to the country’s political debates by appealing to Republicans through the shared language of their Judeo-Christian values.

With just one year left in his second term, Obama now holds a different distinction: No modern president has had his faith more routinely questioned and disparaged. Recent polls show that 29 percent of Americans and nearly 45 percent of Republicans say he is a Muslim.

He has repeatedly said in recent months that one of his biggest regrets is that he will leave behind a country that has grown more polarized and distrustful during his two terms in the White House. “There’s all this goodness and decency and common sense on the ground, and somehow it gets translated into rigid, dogmatic, often mean-spirited politics,” Obama said in a recent interview.

It is really hard to conceive of a man so conceited and so bereft of self-reflection (this being opposed to reflection of self, on that point he really has no equal) that he is puzzled at the state of the nation.

I’ll be the first to say that I really have no idea what Obama’s faith is or if he even has a faith that extends beyond self-adulation. In fact, I think that his self-worship is of such an intensity that it might very well constitute its own monotheistic religion. He joined the hate-factory that Jeremiah Wright runs under the guise of a tax exempt church because that was the church that prominent black political figures in Chicago attended so they could get their weekly dose of “hate Whitey” in a socially acceptable forum. And the up-and-coming young opportunist had to be seen at the right places.

There’s more at the link.

Perhaps streiff doesn’t really have any idea what faith President Obama has, but I don’t believe he has any. For him to be Christian, as he claims, or Muslim, as he sympathizes, would require Mr Obama to believe that there is someone greater than himself, and there is absolutely no evidence of that being the case.

But I do know one thing: he is not a Christian. Regardless of what he says, regardless of where he goes to church, one cannot be a supporter of abortion, and also be a Christian. I do not care if anyone is offended by that, or is out there sputtering, “I’m a Christian and I support abortion.” Such a person is lying, not only to us, but to himself. I will put it absolutely and explicitly: if you support abortion, you are not a Christian, period.

And now, on to the blogroll: