The new Obamacare replacement legislation — a solid step in the right direction

Featured image From a conservative perspective, I think it’s clear that the new House Obamacare legislation — the MacArthur Amendment — is an improvement over the original bill concocted by Speaker Ryan. But how much of one? Yuval Levin makes the case that the core concept of the new legislation — state waivers from Obamacare insurance regulations — represents a significant improvement, in terms of both substance and political pragmatism. He writes: »

Just Another Thursday at Berkeley

Featured imageA “normal” day at Berkeley (you really can’t ever use the word “normal” about Berkeley in the normal way), except for the hundreds of police officers present at Sproul Plaza, which included a large contingent of California Highway Patrol officers with riot gear and plastic handcuffs handy. The heavy CHP presence was the first sign that this time the city and University weren’t going to let things get out of »

Portland Is Stupid, Too

Featured imageSteve writes below that “Portlandia” is the city of the petty, bankrupt, vindictive left. That’s true. It is also stupid. This report comes from the gonzo-left TruthOut: “Under Activist Pressure, Portland Agrees to End All Corporate Investments.” In a sweeping move that follows a wave of divestment activism in Portland, Oregon, and across the country, the Portland City Council voted last week to pull all of the city’s investments in »

My Easley problem–and ours

Featured imageThe Hill’s Jonathan Easley contacted me earlier today via Twitter to complain that I had erred in my post asserting his failure to identify any happy campers among the invited guests at the White House reception for conservative media this past Monday afternoon.  He pointed to a quote from John Fredericks praising the event in the first of his two Hill stories airing the guests’ complaints. Easley therefore stated that »

Small Business Optimism Spiking Since Election

Featured imageThe Bank of America’s survey of 1,300 small business owners finds a dramatic increase in optimism resulting from the election of President Trump and the Republican Congress: Small business owners’ optimism about the economy has turned around dramatically since before the election, according to a survey released by Bank of America. The number of owners expecting the national economy to improve over the next 12 months jumped to 51 percent »

Is This Why ESPN Is Going Broke? [with comment by Paul]

Featured imageESPN is mostly losing money because people are turning away from cable television and the company paid far too much for the rights to various sports. But it hasn’t helped that ESPN has become a constant source of left-wing commentary. I don’t know what it is about sportswriters, but when they allow their politics to show, they are nearly always left-wing. It’s an odd phenomenon. Certainly you can’t say the »

Portlandia: City of the Petty, Bankrupt, Vindictive Left

Featured imageOne of the staples of Portland, Oregon—”Portlandia” to TV viewers— is the annual Rose Festival and it has for several years now featured a kickoff parade akin to the Rose Parade in Pasadena on January 1 every year. But this year’s parade, scheduled for this weekend, has been canceled. The reason: It was going to include—gasp—Republicans! And this is too much for the hardened left, which threatens to shutdown the »

Democrats Pin Hopes On Naked Singing Cowboy

Featured imageThe Democrats are spending millions on all of the special elections that are being held to fill seats vacated by House members who have been appointed to positions in the Trump administration. They see these elections as a way to symbolically repudiate Donald Trump, and they think that by deploying their vast financial resources, they can steal a seat or two that they wouldn’t normally win. Such a race is »

When clothes don’t make the man

Featured imageSix-pack of Pabst Blue Ribbon: $5.34 Copy of Hillbilly Elegy (hardcover): $15.67 Designer jeans caked in fake dirt and mud: $425 The appearance of escaping a liberal bubble: priceless. So writes Philip Wegmann regarding Nordstrom’s “dirty jeans,” which it sells for $425. Nordstrom advertises the jeans this way: These heavily distressed medium-blue denim jeans embody rugged, Americana workwear that’s seen some hard-working action with a crackled, caked-on muddy coating that »

Freedom Caucus endorses revised Obamacare replacement proposal

Featured imageThe House Freedom Caucus, which helped block Paul Ryan’s original Obamacare repeal and replacement legislation, has agreed to support a revised bill. The Washington Post describes, in general terms, the new approach. If the new incarnation gains sufficient support from moderate House Republicans, it will pass. This might happen quickly. For me, the key question in evaluating Obamacare replacement legislation is the impact on premiums. Not having studied the new »

U.N. warns that repealing Obamacare may be illegal

Featured imageDana Milbank reports, with glee, that the United Nations “has contacted the Trump administration as part of an investigation into whether repealing [Obamacare] without an adequate substitute for the millions who would lose health coverage would be a violation of several international conventions that bind the United States.” The warning comes from the Office of the U.N. High Commissioner on Human Rights in Geneva. The U.N. Human Rights Commission (now »

Still not at the White House with Trump [updated]

Featured imageThe Hill’s Jonathan Easley gets a second story out of the complaints of guests of the president at the White House reception for conservative media this past Monday afternoon. Yesterday I took a look at Easley’s first story on the event in “Not at the White House with Trump.” We still see the event through a gauzy filter. I posted my own first-hand account of the event early Tuesday morning »

Democrats Are Being Crushed In the Heartland

Featured imageFor good political news, you can’t do better than South Dakota, my home state. The Democrats haven’t yet ceased to exist, but they are on a death watch. The events of this week are classic. The Democrats are holding their big annual event, the McGovern Day dinner, next weekend at the Ramkota in Sioux Falls. They invited Minnesota’s Keith Ellison to be their featured speaker. But then they got cold »

The sanctuary cities ruling turns out to be nothing much

Featured imageThere is considerably less to Judge Orrick’s ruling on “defunding” sanctuary cities than initially seemed to be the case. Andy McCarthy explains that the ruling is basically an “advisory opinion” (which courts aren’t supposed to issue). The ruling is advisory because neither San Francisco nor Santa Clara, the municipal plaintiffs before Judge Orrick, faced any sort of enforcement action pursuant to the executive order they challenged. Indeed, no entity anywhere »

Such a deal (3)

Featured imageTucker Carlson invited Democratic Rep. Eric Swalwell to discuss the Iran deal in the context of Josh Meyer’s bombshell report for Politico. Meyer shows that Team Obama had a whole lotta lyin’ goin’ on. Where’s the outrage? Swalwell is not inclined to look back. It’s all ancient history. The video below from Tucker’s Fox News shows last night reflects Swalwell’s struggle to keep his Obama era talking points straight. Ben »

Climate: We’ll Always Have Paris

Featured imageOne of the most accurate lines in movie history is Mel Brooks’s Gov. Wm. J. LePetomaine in Blazing Saddles, exclaiming, “We’ve got to protect our phoney-baloney jobs!” The State Department is living up to this dictum this week. As we reported here a couple weeks ago, the Trump Administration is divided about whether to honor Trump’s campaign pledge to withdraw the United States from the Paris Climate Agreement. Today Bloomberg »

Such a deal (2)

Featured imageHere and here, we noted Josh Meyer’s 7300-word investigative report for Politico on the odious hostage deal we arrived at with Iran last year further to the even more odious JCPOA. When it comes to the approach of President Obama and his flacks to these deals, let me adapt the song made famous by Jerry Lee Lewis: whole lotta lyin’ goin’ on. If the Democrats’ mainstream adjunct has its way »