We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
Our Recent Essays Behind the Front Page
Tuesday, July 25. 2017
Photo: Buy Maggie's Ant Kill
Can't Afford a Vacation? Blame the State!
The billion-dollar palaces of Apple, Facebook and Google
Tesla battery, subsidy and sustainability fantasies
The stair story: Everything You Need to Know about Government, in One Story
Steve Jobs Wanted to Break Up the Education Monopoly
Kotkin: Why the Greens Lost, and Trump Won - It’s tough to prevail with an agenda that makes people poorer, more subservient and more miserable. That disconnect is one part of how this awful guy made it to the White House.
New Warmist Prognostication: A One In Three Chance Of Record Rainfall
Charlie Gard: parents end legal battle as time runs out for critically ill baby
Government vs the person
The Edenic religion of the Left
What’s the Matter with Democrats? The Democrats have unveiled their new slogan: a “Better Deal.”
Are Democrats turning to an alliance between neocons and neoliberals? If so, it’s a terrible strategy
In Bizarre Rant, Schumer Claims Gas Prices ‘Never Go Down,’ Despite 12-Year Low Under POTUS
Trump Needs To Be Smart About How He Fires Mueller
JUSTINE DAMOND: A Casualty of Islamophobia
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Is this just a naming coincidence (Maggie's Farm products and this site), or is there a real link between the two? I see that your origins are geographically distinct (New England and Heartland). Looks like a portfolio of nice safe, responsible eco-products.
Charlie Gard was a victim of socialized healthcare. He isn't the only one. England has 8 million stories of people who have been disserved by socialized medicine or what we are trying to implement under the name single payer. It inevitably leads first to much higher costs (estimated to be $4 trillion for the U.S. but given governments track record it will probably be twice that). Than to drastic cutbacks in service in an attempt to cut costs. Sprinkled liberally with fraud waste and abuse it continues to suck up money. It frustrates innovation and invention in whatever it touches. Eventually the administrative costs from the bloated government system exceeds the costs of actually care. It will create two systems; one for the rich and one for the peasants. It will continue to get worse and cost more until you will beg for a dramatic improvement like what the VA is today...
I don't understand why the English bureaucrats insisted that Charlie Gard die. I don't understand why the courts too insisted that Charlie Gard die. I cannot fathom why his parents didn't have the right to take him somewhere else. Except that this is what government programs do and sense and logic be damned.
GoneWithTheWind: I don't understand why the English bureaucrats insisted that Charlie Gard die. I don't understand why the courts too insisted that Charlie Gard die.
It wasn't the bureaucrats, but the doctors, who had determined there was no reasonable likelihood of recovery, and that a natural death was best for Charlie.
GoneWithTheWind: I cannot fathom why his parents didn't have the right to take him somewhere else.
Even in the U.S., people aren't allowed to be subjected to medical experimentation unless there is a reasonable likelihood of success. Sensible arguments can be made as to where to draw the line, but hyperventilating while ignoring that the line exists is rhetoric, not argument.
Z: It wasn't the bureaucrats, but the doctors...
And the doctors were employed by the state. Whatever... it wasn't the parents who should have primary responsible for the care of their child.
Z: Even in the U.S....
So? U. S. law can be just as stupid as English law.
mudbug: So? U. S. law can be just as stupid as English law.
Are you saying state should never intervene, no matter the consequences to the child?
No. Are you saying government doctors should intervene regardless the consequences of the child?
Zachriel: Are you saying state should never intervene, no matter the consequences to the child?
Then we are in agreement on the basic principle that sometimes the state must intervene. The question, then, is where to draw the line.
mudbug: Are you saying government doctors should intervene regardless the consequences of the child?
Not sure what you are asking. Doctors, as a rule, work to protect the life and health of people. However, some people they can't help. In those cases, most people think they should be allowed to die a natural death.
me: Are you saying government doctors should intervene regardless the consequences of the child?
Seems simple enough... In other words do you think that govt. doctors can intervene to give treatment they feel necessary to promote the patient's life or health as well as forbidding treatment that might be bebeficial for the patient or even life-saving?
There is not an infinite supply of anything - especially health care - so in the case where the health care is provided by the government and the government doctors do not believe the likely results of a procedure warrant the expenditure, then they should withhold treatment. If, on the other hand as in this case, a treatment was not available in the UK but was available elsewhere AND the state was not paying for that treatment, the government doctors have no right to withhold treatment.
mudbug: In other words do you think that govt. doctors can intervene to give treatment they feel necessary to promote the patient's life or health as well as forbidding treatment that might be bebeficial for the patient or even life-saving?
Doctors certainly have their protocols for providing care. However, they don't make the final decisions. Typically, it's the family, but in some countries, when there is a dispute, the courts appoint someone to represent the patient, and a hearing is held to determine what is in the patient's best interest. In this case, the doctors determined there was no likelihood of recovery, that the patient may have been in pain, and that allowing a natural death was the best option.
mudbug: If, on the other hand as in this case, a treatment was not available in the UK but was available elsewhere AND the state was not paying for that treatment, the government doctors have no right to withhold treatment.
Except the chance of the treatment making a difference was slight. Not everyone can be saved. You have to at least acknowledge the doctor's point of view and suggesting an ulterior motive which didn't exist.
Whether the chance of the alternative treatment being successful was slight or not is immaterial. It's not the state's child, it's not the state's money, and they could be wrong and the treatment might have been successful. The state can advise, but they should but out. The have no stake in the decision.
It's difficult describing self-determination to somebody who apparently values it so little.
You had previously granted that there are cases where the state should intervene, but your current argument implies the state should never intervene.
This is where you clarify your view so that we can understand when you think the state has the authority to intervene.
If you read the post in question, you will see I say that because the govt isn't paying for the proposed procedure, they have no reason to prohibit the parents from trying it.
Having the govt provide your healthcare is, in my mind, a terrible way to ration healthcare, but that's what they have. In a free country, if you have the resources, you should be able to pursue any course of treatment you want. The case of Christian Scientists who prefer to let God cure themselves and their children is more difficult because a parent may be withholding treatment that could be lifesaving. I don't have a strong opinion on what the govt's role should be in that situation. It seems reasonable to me that the govt might be able to compel treatment for minors. In any case, if the govt is going to compel any treatment, it should be unambiguously beneficial for the patient. The govt should not compel treatment that would result in death or prohibit treatment that could be beneficial if it isn't paying.
So if your son or daughter had a rare disease for which there is experimental treatment available that could be effective and you have the means to provide that treatment, you would sit still while some doctors told you that you are PROHIBITED from using that treatment? If you will hand over the power of life and death of your child to the govt, you will hand over all power to it.
mudbug: If you read the post in question, you will see I say that because the govt isn't paying for the proposed procedure, they have no reason to prohibit the parents from trying it.
So you're saying that if the parents pay for some crank to experiment on their child, then the state has no authority to intervene? That seems contrary to all modern governments, which do intervene in such cases.
mudbug: If you will hand over the power of life and death of your child to the govt, you will hand over all power to it.
That's a reasonable argument, but in the real world, nearly everyone admits that there is a line between the rights of the parents and the duty of society in certain cases. You avoid such a discuss, apparently because maintaining a 'pure' position is easier when not muddied with real world examples.
So you're saying that if the parents pay for some crank to experiment on their child, then the state has no authority to intervene?
Again you misrepresent the comment and the situation.
Believe that's another strawman but that's all you kidz have.
drowningpuppies: Again you misrepresent the comment and the situation.
It was a question. (You can tell because there's a question mark at the end of the sentence.) Frankly, your position is not well-defined, and you seem to be avoiding being tied down to specifics. Are there times when the government should intervene concerning children, or does the state never have authority?
Yes, you misrepresented his comment with your snarky question about paying for some crank experiment on a child.
I know it's hard for you kidz but try not to be so obtuse and sarcastic with your patronizing comments.
An uncontroversial counterexample was chosen to illustrate the limitations of the black-and-white argument. In the real world, nearly everyone admits that there are shades of gray between the rights of the parents and the duties of society.
Because it is impossible for some to abandon black-and-white thinking, you probably presuppose our position concerning Charlie Gard.
GoneWithTheWind: Charlie Gard was a victim of socialized healthcare.
Actually, Charlie was at one of the best children's hospitals in the world. Cost was not the issue, but whether Charlie should die a natural death, or be kept alive indefinitely by artificial means.
You're missing the question. The big question here is not if the government had the right answer to this question in this case, it is a matter of whether the government should have the right to answer this question at all.
It's not a mater of are they right, it's a matter of do they have the right.
Are you saying the state should never intervene, no matter the consequences to the child?
What I am saying is that if the government has the right to define death as your personal best interest, then there is no longer a right to life. I wonder in how many cases the best interest of the individual as determined by the state will be found to be in alignment with the best interest of the state.
Another guy named Dan: What I am saying is that if the government has the right to define death as your personal best interest, then there is no longer a right to life.
You raise a very good point. But what of people who keep their relative alive on life support even though they are in great pain or in a permanent vegetative state? Most doctors will object to providing continued treatment when there is no reasonable chance of recovery.
Another guy named Dan: I wonder in how many cases the best interest of the individual as determined by the state will be found to be in alignment with the best interest of the state.
Sure, but that's why there are courts, which are independent of the administrative state. Even when families decide, there may be ulterior motives.
I don't understand why it was so important for Charlie to die either, because I don't understand why people do such evil things. Except I do, but I don't understand God's plan. Evil is allowed to exist in this world. The history of man is tyranny with the powerful and the suckups coming together to control everyone they can. Either by force or propaganda. Some go willingly others fight until death. The ultimate goal of the powerful is to enslave us. Healthcare is a wonderful too for them. Once you control healthcare, you control the person. There is literally nothing that you do that does not affect your health, therefor all things must be controlled. It's all for your benefit of better health. See climate change, for further examples of control for your own good.
The stair story: Everything You Need to Know about Government, in One Story
Just curious. Is the author willing to insure the stairs for any accident over the years?
I don't know but the government didn't seem to mind that people were falling down and possibly sustaining injuries. Oh that's right if they get sued they just use taxpayer dollars to take care of it, because the path prior to the stairs was soooo safe and up to code.
Pocono pam: I don't know but the government didn't seem to mind that people were falling down and possibly sustaining injuries.
People took a shortcut instead of using the park entrance. They assume the risk. But if the stairs become unstable over time, then someone else is responsible. Will it be the author of the article? You perhaps?
Then why add stairs at all if what you say is correct. If their is absolutely no liability for the government because the patrons "assume the risk", then why bother installing anything? For that matter why bother tearing down the stairs erected by someone else if indeed there is no possible liability to the government. Can't have it both ways.
Pocono pam: Then why add stairs at all if what you say is correct.
Because it's a public park, and people may want stairs. However, you can't just have people making improvements willy-nilly with no mechanism to guarantee safety or suitability.
Pocono pam: For that matter why bother tearing down the stairs erected by someone else if indeed there is no possible liability to the government.
Because by allowing the stairs, the government will become liable. That is, unless you decide to put them on your insurance in perpetuity.
You are missing the point completely. It isn't about who has responsibility for the stairs or if the stairs should be built. It is about the inability of government to be a good manager of the taxpayers money. They are wasteful, most likely overpay to appease unions and most likely give the contract to a relative or friend of a relative which of course implies fraud. This seems to happen more often then not; that the government mishandles our money and uses it fraudulently. It goes to the question Tucker Carlson asked Maxine Waters; How does a congresswoman acquire a multi-million dollar home when her only job has been in the government? How do all congressmen/women retire/leave congress as millionaires? Why does it cost the government $100 million dollars to build a building that a private owner would have paid $50 million for? Why do road projects cost the government 200% more than it would if done by a private corporation? Why does our trillion dollar highway fund/taxes disappear and not get spent on highways?
This isn't about the stairs it is about the consistent and inevitable fraud, waste and abuse by governments.
GoneWithTheWind: It isn't about who has responsibility for the stairs or if the stairs should be built.
As for cost, it's comparing apples and oranges. Do the stairs meet minimal safety requirements? What will happen to the footings in a heavy rain? Who is responsible for safety?
Furthermore, you just can't have people erecting structures on public lands without permission. There have to be plans and approvals and inspections. That's just the way it works. And, of course, it adds to the cost.
GoneWithTheWind: It goes to the question Tucker Carlson asked Maxine Waters; How does a congresswoman acquire a multi-million dollar home when her only job has been in the government?
Her husband played in the NFL.
Sid Williams played 70 games over five years ending in 1969. Not the kind of career that gets you the kind of lifestyle he and Mad Maxine enjoy. You're going to have to do better than that.
Waters' income plus the NFL pension is at least a quarter million per year, which allows significant accumulation of wealth. She has a significant mortgage on her home, and her net worth is probably less than $1 million.
You are carrying water for the congresswomen voted the most corrupt congress creature since Ted Kennedy. While it is consistent with your covering up for the crimes of the Democrats it simply makes no sense to me. Why defend the indefensible; in this case Waters "good name". Her reputation is crap and she is a laughing stock to anyone with more than an IQ of 80. I can understand your defense of the socialist/communist Democrats because you share their socialist/communist views but why defend the criminal/corrupt/dishonest Maxine Waters? Has she ever said anything intelligent or made any sense even by accident? Her only value to the Democrats is that she makes Nancy Pelosi look good.
GoneWithTheWind: You are carrying water for the congresswomen voted the most corrupt congress creature since Ted Kennedy.
No. We're responding to specific claims with specific evidence. You asked how she acquired a multi-million dollar house. She did it by taking out a mortgage.
Re: Climate change is killing us now
Written with all intelligence of a climate fear monger:
[qoute]A young, fit U.S. soldier is marching in a Middle Eastern desert, under a blazing summer sun. He’s wearing insulated clothing and lugging more than 100 pounds of gear, and thus sweating profusely as his body attempts to regulate the heat. But it’s 108 degrees out and humid, too much for him bear. [/quote] (emphasis mine)
So it's humid in the desert? And at 108 degrees, not particularly hot for one.
"In Bizarre Rant, Schumer Claims Gas Prices ‘Never Go Down,’ Despite 12-Year Low Under POTUS"
I don't think I have ever seen a TV clip of your Senator Schumer when he wasn't engaged in the most tearful histrionics; the man is a drama queen of Vaudevillian proportions.
I bet he carries a small phial of water and an eye-drops syringe wherever he goes.
I'm really impressed with the better deal. The democrats are amazing. They are going to increase wages, the cost of labor, and decrease the cost of goods and services. That is sheer genius. Why didn't the republicans think of that.
This will be compensated for by a a 50-100% tax on the rich (anyone making $50,000 or above). Don't worry, it will all work out.
The biggest problem for the Democrats is it is no longer made up of anyone with American values. Basing your party on rewarding people based on their skin color, gender and sexual activities rather than merit or hard work, and being structured on a Marxist command economy is not very attractive to the large majority of Americans.
The Bird Dog brand name is busting out all over!
BIRDDOGS SHORTS WILL FREE YOUR MANHOOD FROM UNDERWEAR
Re: TNR fiction, you have to understand, it was never hot before now.