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OpenMarket: Doug Bandow

  • Wasn't Sea Ice Supposed to be Disappearing?

    January 5, 2009
    I'm totally confused.  The world was supposed to be ending, and one alleged sign was the disappearance of sea ice.  But the ice is back.  Where's all that warming?  (It's chilly out--I really want to know where that warming went!)

    Reports Daily Tech:
    Rapid growth spurt leaves amount of ice at levels seen 29 years ago.

    Thanks to a rapid rebound in recent months, global sea ice levels now equal those seen 29 years ago, when the year 1979 also drew to a close.

    Ice levels had been tracking lower throughout much of 2008, but rapidly recovered in the last quarter. In fact, the rate of increase from September onward is the fastest rate of change on record, either upwards or downwards.

    The data is being reported by the...
  • The EU Propaganda Machine

    January 5, 2009
    Government propaganda is always irritating, especially because that means politicians are taxing citizens to pay for a snow job for those same citizens.  The European Union is no different than the U.S. in this regard.  The group Open Europe has published a new study detailing EU propaganda efforts:
    Open Europe has published new research which shows that the European Union is spending billions of euros a year promoting itself and its central aim of 'ever closer union'. In 2008 alone, it spent more than 2.4 billion euros. That is more than Coca Cola spends on advertising each year, worldwide.

    As well as a sophisticated information and communication strategy designed to 'sell' the EU and its political message, the EU also spends billions of euros a year on efforts to engender a common...
  • No Money in Washington, D.C.? No Matter!

    January 3, 2009
    Washington, D.C. is another world.  Today the company newsletter, otherwise known as the Washington Post, had an article entitled "U.S. Debt Expected to Soar This Year:  $2 Trillion Increase May Test Federal Ability to Borrow" on page one.  It explained:
    With President-elect Barack Obama and congressional Democrats considering a massive spending package aimed at pulling the nation out of recession, the national debt is projected to jump by as much as $2 trillion this year, an unprecedented increase that could test the world's appetite for financing U.S. government spending.

    For now, investors are frantically...
  • Remember, the Government Wants to Manage Your Health Care!

    January 2, 2009
    Just think how wonderful it would be if government guaranteed everyone health care.  Just like in Great Britain!

    Just ask Lynne Neilson what she thinks of the National Health Service.  Reports the Daily Mail:
    An expectant mother gave birth on a hospital assessment room floor because busy staff failed to put her in a maternity unit bed.

    Lynne Neilson had been waiting for two-and-a-half hours when she went into labour standing up, clutching the side of a trolley.

    A midwife who arrived just as her daughter Orla's head appeared put down a disposable mat, caught the baby and unwound the umbilical cord wrapped around her neck.

    Even then, Mrs Neilson had to wait a further hour before being transferred to the labour ward....
  • The End of the Global Warming Frenzy

    December 31, 2008
    Sunday was a beautiful day in Washington.  The temperature hit the high 60s and I wore shorts.  I dreamed it was spring.

    But as the new year comes in, so has the cold.  At times like this I dream of global warming!  Please, please, please drive away the cold.

    Alas, the indefatigable Christopher Booker suggests that 2008 may be the year that the global warming scare died. And here I was planning on summer in December. The alarmists aren't yet ready to go away, but their ability to convince humankind to collectively jump off the economic cliff may be disappearing.

    Writes Booker in the Daily Telegraph:
    Easily one of the most important stories of 2008 has been all the evidence suggesting that this may be looked back on as...
  • Al Gore, Call Your Office: Climate Alarmist Says there's no Alarm

    December 29, 2008
    Global warming is a tough issue for laymen.  Learned people strut about saying that the science is conclusive, done, finished.  The world is destined for disaster.

    But embarrassing contrary peer-reviewed studies then float by, as independent experts pull the curtain back, revealing the machinations of the alarmist lobby.  Rather like the Wizard of Oz, Al Gore & Co. say pay no attention to the man behind the curtain, whooping and wheezing about the end of the world.

    If the science really is settled, you'd think the alarmists would leap at the chance to prove it.  But Lawrence Solomon recently found just the contrary.  When pressed on the issue, his alarmist opponent ran in the other direction.

    Writes Solomon, author of The Deniers:
    It was a global...
  • An End to the Good Times?

    December 29, 2008
    Egads. Even the New York Times isn't sure that the good times of endless government spending can go on forever. Peter Goodman writes in the Times:
    Borrowing and spending beyond ordinary limits largely explains how Americans got into such economic trouble. For decades, businesses and consumers feasted relentlessly, as if gravity, arithmetic and the tyranny of debt had been defanged by financial engineering.

    Armed with credit cards and belief in a bountiful future, Americans brought home ceaseless volumes of iPods and cashmere sweaters, and never mind their declining incomes and winnowing savings. Banks lent staggering sums of money to homeowners with dubious credit, convinced that real estate prices could only go up. Government spent as it saw fit, secure that foreigners could...
  • Legal Terrorists on the Loose

    December 29, 2008
    One can appreciate the difficulties faced by people with disabilities when they attempt to navigate streets and stores.  But government legislation has unfairly turned a moral responsibility into a legal duty, and created fertile ground for legal terrorists determined to enrich themselves.

    Indeed, disabilities litigation is dominated by a small number of abusers, with horrid consequences for innocent businesses.  Reports Time:
    Jarek Molski, 38, is a bit of a legend in legal circles. Disabled in a 1985 motorcycle accident that left him a paraplegic, he has filed 400 lawsuits against businesses under the Americans with Disability Act, alleging access violations. He...
  • So Who is Getting All of the Taxpayers' Cash?

    December 28, 2008
    Amazing.  Not only are trillions of dollars being passed around to bail out any business with at least a couple congressmen on its side.  But the government won't tell us who is getting how much or what they are doing with it.  And we still call the U.S. a democracy!

    Reports the Baltimore Sun:
    Last week the government dispatched more of your money into the abyss. Through its "Term Auction Facility," the Federal Reserve lent banks $63 billion - nearly half the cost of the entire savings and loan bailout from the 1980s, or what it takes to fight in Iraq for six months.

    Who got the money? At what rates? What collateral did they put up? How will the proceeds be spent?

    The Fed isn't saying, and it's fighting attempts to shed light. The Treasury...
  • Seeking Accountability--After Handing out $350 Billion!

    December 27, 2008
    Oops.  Congress finally has bestirred itself after the administration used $350 billion in ways different from what it originally promised, and then required nothing of the banks upon which it was showering the cash.  Better late than never I suppose.

    Reports the Associated Press:
    Lawmakers are turning up the heat on banks that have received money from the Treasury Department's $700 billion rescue fund after the Associated Press reported that they wouldn't say how they are using the money.

    Sens. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., and Olympia Snowe, R-Maine, said Tuesday that they will propose legislation next month to force companies that receive money from the fund to report how they have spent it.

    The legislation would also prohibit them from spending the taxpayer dollars on...

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