It seems everybody is saying with the President’s action Americans will interact with Cubans and acquaint them with the wonders of democracy and this will ultimately change Cuba from dictatorship to freedom. Maryland congressman Chris Van Hollen put it this way, “More travel, more trade, and more communication between the United States and Cuba will expose Cuba to the benefits of the free exchange of goods and ideas. Those in Cuba who want to limit individual freedom may fear this, but Americans, and those who want to expand freedom, should welcome it.” Continue reading
Q. You say that your plan will cost even more than the ACA. How do you propose to pay for it?
A. Funding for the ACA is supposed to pay for coverage of most of the currently uninsured. For the moment we would leave funding as it is, knowing that it is probably inadequate. The reason is we really don’t know what our plan would cost. Instead of presenting some computer printouts and pretending we have real figures, we took a different tack. We already had a form of universal coverage before the ACA. It’s just that by comparison with the rest of the world it was very high cost inefficient system. Further it favored large companies over individuals and smaller entities, impeding labor mobility. Instead we designed a system to achieve the lowest cost to our economy. As a bonus we wanted the flexibility that would actually enhance economic growth. Catastrophic policies without any bells and whistles sold nationwide without having to cover preexisting conditions. Medical credit cards with little or no credit risk for providers. Huge reduction in third-party pay and the attendant costly paperwork. Every individual will have a financial incentive to find the best service and cost solution. People no longer locked in jobs for fear of losing their health insurance. This should give leverage to employees to get wage increases based on employers benefit savings and increase their mobility. If all these market incentives don’t reduce health care costs as a percentage of GDP, probably nothing would.
Senator John McCain is a hero. He endured years of harsh captivity and torture. The least we can do is give him a hearing when he talks about things he experienced, the military, captivity and torture. It’s what he actually says that’s troubling. As we understand his position, anything that even smacks of torture is beneath the American people and should be avoided at all costs. He states it this way, “But in the end, torture’s failure to serve its intended purpose isn’t the main reason to oppose its use. I have often said and will always maintain that this question isn’t about our enemies, it’s about us. It’s about who we were, who we are and who we aspire to be.” Continue reading
We at Detour are the first people that should take the advice to look before you leap to a conclusion. We watched the Eric Garner video several times and voiced our dismay over the grand jury failure to charge Officer Pantaleo. We were told that the death was the result of his illegal choke hold and in any case the coroner ruled it a homicide. A death over a few cigarettes! Of course, we were in good company with virtually everyone on the Left and all sorts of people in the middle and the right echoing the same sentiments. People as diverse as Hillary Clinton, Al Sharpton, Rand Paul and Bill O’Reilly all seemed equally dismayed. Better still we could show how fair and balanced we were after concluding that the Ferguson Grand Jury acted properly, now we could heartily condemn this grand jury. Unfortunately some little bits of knowledge began to sneak in. Continue reading
One of the other things that happened in 1776 was the publication of a book, An Inquiry into the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of Nations, by the Scottish moral philosopher Adam Smith who became the father of modern economics. Since then we’ve had a proliferation of people known as economists. Originally they sought to better understand the Smith’s “invisible hand” as it relates to such things as free markets, supply and demand and market pricing. There are still economists working to enlarge on what he brought forth, but there are others who call themselves economists but actually believe that governments rather than the market should set prices. Logically the name economists can’t cover opposites. The market people got there first so they should have the name. Maybe those that believe the opposite should be called faux economists. Is there an easy way to tell the difference between real and faux economists? We submit the argument over raising the minimum wage is a great place to separate real from faux. Continue reading