In the middle of explaining how he'd replace the Affordable Care Act with a "free-market system" with vouchers and risk pools, Rep. Paul Ryan unfurls this gem: "Whether they choose to do that or not (that is, whether good citizens actually buy health insurance with the voucher he'd give them or not) is not really something you can necessarily actually capture in scoring." In other words, he can't prove his plan works -- which is understandable, because you can't score bullshit. He also doesn't explain why the Affordable Care Act is "so fundamentally flawed in its architecture," though I guess he figures if he uses the word "architecture" you'll just take his word for it. He really is, as someone once said, the dumb person's vision of a smart person.
Joe Conason says Americans appear to have amnesia about national security issues, as they seem to prefer Republicans to handle foreign affairs right now. Of course we'd be fools to discount the possibility that Mr. Bush knew his little Iraq adventure would blow up in someone else's face and that Republicans might benefit from that, but it'd also help to explain why this appears to be "amnesia" -- it'd help to explain, for example, that our "liberal" media has virtually no attention span, and carried water for the Bush war in Iraq while helping to demonize those of us who opposed the war from the beginning.
Remember that bankster CEO who complained that most folks who hate banks just don't have enough "skin in the game"? Robert Reich reminds us that ordinary folks already have too much "skin in the game," in that we suffer from Wall Street disasters while banksters don't. Fun fact: even gamblers can get their gambling debts forgiven more easily than regular folks can get their student loans forgiven. And if a Senator were to introduce a bill correcting that obviously absurd state of affairs, the banksters would strangle it in its crib.
Another year, another putatively pro-business association claiming that federal regulations are much more expensive to businesses than they really are. Long story short: like previous reports, they brandish scare numbers (ZOMG $1.7 TRILLYUNZ!!!!!) without telling you that their big, bad numbers accumulate over decades, that they count penalties for breaking the rules that most businesses don't break as "costs," and that they don't count the health benefits resulting from following the rules against the "cost." After all, hours (and therefore work) not lost due to illnesses from dirty and air and water don't help the CEO buy his 19th vacation home.
It's not just local police departments that get killing gadgets from our military -- school districts get them, too. School districts! That's not a comment on Kids Today, since every generation has complained about Kids Today. That's a comment on how little faith our educational system has in its ability to manage our children, who surely cannot be that threatening to adults. The good news? Most school districts are sending them back. And that's a comment on the awesome power of bad PR.
Finally, after much public pressure, Google executive Eric Schmidt has said Google will end its association with ALEC, the state legislative affairs group responsible for so much right-wing legislation at the state level over the years. I'm such a stubborn bastard that I still wish ALEC's regressive views on economics, rather than their regressive views on climate change, prompted Google's executives to quit -- but I'm not so stubborn that I won't take it. Next up on Fox News: Google joins the lynch mob against ALEC!