Alarm after vomiting passenger dies on flight from Nigeria to JFK | New York Post

A plane from Nigeria landed at JFK Airport Thursday with a male passenger aboard who had died during the flight after a fit of vomiting — and CDC officials conducted a “cursory” exam before announcing there was no Ebola and turning the corpse over to Port Authority cops to remove, Rep. Peter King said on Thursday.

via New York Post.

Just how much dishonesty is going on here?

We are told that it would be “counterproductive” to ban flights from infected areas into the US.

We are told that it is not airborne, even though it apparently is: http://www.nature.com/srep/2012/121115/srep00811/full/srep00811.html

This is crazy.

 

“What Was the Point of Obamacare?”

Last week, the Washington Post delivered a bombshell report: “Only one in 10 uninsured people who qualify for private plans through the new marketplaces enrolled as of last month.” Instead, the overwhelming majority of those who are enrolling in insurance plans on the ObamaCare exchanges already had insurance.

The lie of the year for 2013 was President Obama’s promise that, “if you like your plan, you can keep it.” The lie of the year for 2014 is going to be the claim that ObamaCare would insure the uninsured.

ObamaCare has failed to attract those who lack health insurance, seemingly because they have decided that the premiums are too high for the bare-bones coverage the exchanges offer. In other words, the Affordable Care Act has failed to offer affordable care. Instead, most of ObamaCare’s sign-ups are merely migrating over from an existing health-insurance plan—in many cases involuntarily, after their plans were canceled for failing to comply with new ObamaCare regulations.

via The Federalist

The “point” of Obamacare seems to have been to get Americans’ health care under government control, so that the NSA and their buddies would have more data and the government could force nuns to pay for birth control – out of sheer malice.

Am I oversimplifying? Sorry – feeling cynical lately, as people quite seriously argue whether Christians ought to be formally scapegoated for the sins of the world (all in the name of “tolerance” and “diversity”, of course) or even allowed to exist at all.

Did we ever come up with a good reason why a law disliked by voters of both parties – and now proved wildly ineffective – “cannot” be repealed?

Rule Of Law?

[I]t’s time to concede that no one has been more adept or aggressive about delaying and defanging Obamacare than Obama himself. Systematically and with an eye toward his party’s immediate political troubles, Obama has reshaped, photo-shopped, reimagined, and reengineered Obamacare. It all sounds techy and cool and flexible—at least to the administration. To those who must live with and live under the law, the arbitrary is the norm. The only pattern is chaos. Obamacare’s worst enemy is Obama.

The New York Times has compiled a helpful list of recent changes to the Affordable Care Act—13 in just over a year. That comes out to more than one substantive change to policy or legislated deadlines per month. This, in a landmark law nearing its fourth birthday.

via NationalJournal.com.

“Where Equal Is Worse?”

Beware statistics?

Though it makes use of hard data on men’s and women’s education, health, economic participation, and political empowerment in 133 countries, it is far from objective, as it is built on dubious assumptions about human flourishing. Any instance of women outperforming men is deemed good, regardless of how everyone in the country is actually doing. Setting aside absolute measures of wealth, education levels, longevity, and so forth, the WEF measures only the size of the gap between men and women within individual countries. All other questions about national well-being are irrelevant.

Under this inadequate framework, the Nordic countries top the charts in gender equality: nothing objectionable or surprising there. The problems arise a bit farther down the list. For instance, the Philippines is among the 22 countries that surpass the United States in the rankings: it comes in at fifth place, also far ahead of Canada (20) and France (at a pitiful 45), to name just a few places where women actually choose to live when they’re able to immigrate. The Philippines scores highly because women there are catching up to men on economic measures, outperforming men in education, and outliving them by several years.

But the story behind the country’s rising numbers is not a good one. Poor job prospects there have long forced the government to encourage Filipino men to look for work abroad. In the 1990s they also tapped women to join the outmigration, and today women are the majority of the country’s migrant workers. “Even in the low paying Persian Gulf,” explains New America Foundation fellow Jason de Parle, who is finishing a book on how globalization is affecting Filipinos, “a Filipina maid often makes $600 or more a month…considerably more than a starting school teacher at home.”

In other words, according to the WEF and a credulous media, a poor country where women, unable to make ends meet, are forced to leave their children and families for far-away jobs where abuse is said to be commonplace is worthy of our emulation (the top-ranked countries are “potential role models,” says the report) because, after all, they are closing the WEF-defined gender gap. Never mind that women are wealthier, healthier, and better-educated in many countries ranked far below the Philippines: what matters is only the gap.

Worse still, gender gap fundamentalism creates a zero-sum struggle between the sexes where women’s advantage is always good while men’s is always bad.

via Family Studies.

It’s very important to be honest with statistics – and that includes pointing out any distortions created by your data.

“Canada has death panels, and that’s a good thing”

Last week Canada’s Supreme Court ruled that doctors could not unilaterally ignore a Toronto family’s decision to keep their near-dead husband and father on life support. In the same breath, however, the court also confirmed that, under the laws of Ontario, Canada’s most populous province, a group of government-appointed adjudicators could yet overrule the family’s choice. That tribunal, not the family or the doctors, has the ultimate power to pull the plug.

In other words: Canada has death panels.

I use that term advisedly. Former Republican vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin made it famous in the summer of 2009, when Congress was fighting over whether to pass Obamacare. As Republicans and Democrats continue to spar over health care, we should pause to wonder why millions of Canadians have come to accept the functional equivalent of an idea that almost sank health care reform even though, in this country, it was imaginary.

via Slate

So death panels are a good thing, but Palin is still a crazy lady for worrying about having them.

“Forced Caesareans in India Surrogacy Clinic”

The San Francisco Chronicle has a long and amazing story on surrogacy in India. It reveals how terribly the “gestational carriers” are exploited. For example, in one clinic three-quarters of all the children are born surgically by caesarean–and, it would appear, with inadequate post-surgical pain control.

Since these women have no power, one could say they are “forced” into surgery along with being exploited in surrogacy. From “Outsourcing a Life:”

On a mattress in her room at the clinic, Manisha struggled through the early stages of recovery. Even eating and sitting hurt, thanks to the incision on her abdomen. Her cesarean section, Dr. Patel said, had been a last resort when she determined the baby was too big to deliver vaginally. But the surgical nurse who had fetched Manisha from her room two hours before the birth, and another who helped prepare the delivery room, both said they were readying her for surgery from the start.

Manisha trusted the doctor’s judgment. After all, her baby was the 649th born to a surrogate at the clinic, and Dr. Patel had delivered virtually every one. But unknown to Manisha and the Kowalskis, close to three-fourths of them had been delivered by cesarean, an extremely high rate.

Take a look at the photo [at original site/see link] of the surrogate writhing in pain. This is the face of biological colonialism.

via National Review Online.

The attempt to rewrite the rules of family-making (so that affluent people can have everything while poor people can be bit players in a real-life version of The Handmaid’s Tale) is horrifying to me, and of great concern.

I do not think people yet grasp the implications.

“Does Faith = Hate?”

Will religious conservatives be seen as no better than racist bullies in the emerging settlement? Despite what you haven’t heard—the news media’s silence on religious liberty threats from same-sex marriage is deafening—this is not slippery-slope alarmism. The threat is real.

via The American Conservative.

What is the nature of kinship? Is it biological ties, or is it something you can “choose”?

People cite adoption,  but nobody “chooses” adoption. Adoption is based on the idea of finding the best possible home for a child who, for whatever reason, has no home. There’s no choice. There’s just what’s right or best – a value judgment.

But forcing everyone to embrace gay unions as equal to marriage does not mean, as gays insist, that marriage “is not procreative”. They have no intention of marrying their lover while raising their child with the child’s real other parent. They intend to take the child away from its real other parent and give it to their lover, because marriage is procreative. Example: in the courts Miller v. Jenkins, the courts upheld that Janet Jenkins being married to Isabella Miller’s mother means that Janet “is” Isabella’s other parent, because one of the benefits of marriage is the right to be presumed the parent of your spouse’s child. (Of course, traditionally that came with an obligation to refrain from adultery….)

People insist that the debate must be phrased in terms of equality for gays – specifically, in terms focusing on equality of outcome; gays deserve whatever it takes to make them as happily married as any other couple. That distinction is deliberately downplayed, but it is crucial, because it is biology that discriminates against them in this, not man. Giving them whatever it takes necessarily means taking away from others. We’re not talking about taking away artificial laws that are designed to be mean to a group of people for no reason; we’re talking about adding new stuff designed to compensate for biology’s cruelty. Fertility coverage for gays is already law in California, and multiple states are now teaching schoolchildren that ‘children can have two mommies’. That is not equality of opportunity. That is what disability rights law calls accommodations. Unlike most disability claims, however, there is no discussion permitted on what accommodations are actually reasonable, necessary, or required; there is no discussion of how much those accommodations will inconvenience those whose rights are in conflict. Gays are simply entitled to a blank check. If they need it, they’re entitled to it.

We will take from religious people the right to hold that kinship is sacred, that the ties between a mother and a father and a child are ties established by God, that family comes with sacred obligations. Those beliefs will be a crime, and the schools will teach our children that our holding those beliefs makes us a bigoted hater toward anyone who does not wish to honor the sanctity of those ties, or the obligations that come with them. These changes are already happening in some places.

But we’re also taking something away from the child – not just the right to have both mother and father, but the right to have custody decided according to the child’s best interest. Instead, child’s best interest can be sacrificed as we prioritize the rights of parents to purchase and consume parenthood as an experience.

“The high cost of corruption”

As he heads to federal prison for what could be decades, one important question lingers: How much did his extortion, kickback and bribery rackets contribute to the city’s financial crisis and its filing in July for the largest municipal bankruptcy in the nation’s history?

“Kilpatrick is not the main culprit of the city’s historic bankruptcy, which is the result of larger social and economic forces at work for decades,” federal prosecutors said in court documents. “But his corrupt administration exacerbated the crisis.”

…But much more difficult to quantify is the nonmonetary cost of corruption: the betrayal of the public’s trust. The honest contractors who were elbowed out of deals, even though their bids were lower. The businesses that refused to participate in pay-to-play schemes and just stayed away — or went somewhere else.

“The numbers don’t tell the gravity of the situation,” said Reid Schar, the former federal prosecutor who successfully prosecuted former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich. “When you have public corruption cases, the things that are very difficult to gauge and are not captured are, ‘How much of public confidence is eroded by what the person has done? …

“How do you put a value on a company that didn’t bid or get the job?’ You don’t know.”

In 2002, for example, Kilpatrick killed a plan to add a House of Blues restaurant at Ford Field because the company that proposed it refused to hire Kilpatrick’s father and codefendant as its minority partner. Kilpatrick had pledged $10 million in city funds but changed his mind when the company refused to hire his dad.

In 2006, Ferguson used his relationship with the mayor to pressure a company into giving him 40% of a contract to renovate the Detroit police headquarters. The company offered 30%. Ferguson declined. The company then bowed out of the deal.

In 2001, minority contractor William Hayes was stiffed out of a $24.7-million sewer repair job that Kilpatrick steered to Ferguson instead. Six years later, Hayes closed his 40-year-old excavation business, claiming later that Ferguson and Kilpatrick made it impossible for him to compete for water and sewer contracts.

“He helped put me out of business,” Hayes told the Free Press in March, referring to Ferguson. “It said right in the text messages. He told Kwame to put me out.”

Meanwhile, Kilpatrick padded the city payroll with friends and family, including a cousin who admitted stealing nearly $20,000 from the Manoogian Mansion restoration fund. City payroll records show that more than two dozen of Kilpatrick’s appointees were relatives or close friends who got an average 36% in salary increases while other employees got 2%.

via Detroit Free Press