Oregonians Learning The Hard Way

You gotta credit those people in Oregon. At least they are trying. Oh, they are VERY trying! Remember back about a year and a half ago when Oregonians voted basically 56-44% to legalize street drugs? That legalized heroin, cocaine, meth, and just about any other illicit drug that is out there today. And now Oregonians are learning a lesson that I would have thought most people would have figured would be basic knowledge…

Drug use and overdoses in Oregon have risen dramatically.

Now, Oregon officials are dealing with the problem. They are finding their emergency rooms stacked with people dealing with overdoses. Somehow, they never grasped the concept that if you remove an illegality and make it legal that more people would take part in that activity. And for a state that would seem on the surface anyway to be as “health conscious” as Oregon appears to be to do something that is so 180 degrees opposite of that notion is almost unthinkable.

Currently, there are 18 states that have legalized recreational marijuana use, including here in the AZ. And according to a recent study done by Columbia University, in states that have legalized pot, usage has gone up 26% more than in states without legalized pot. Does that surprise anybody?

So, if that study with marijuana seems legit (and it does to me), then why on earth wouldn’t the good people of Oregon realize that if you legalize it, they will use it?

We’ve seen this time and time again with liberal ideas. How many times have states or cities passed liberal issues only to have to go back later and change it back to the way it was. Does anyone remember the “defund the police” movement of a couple years ago? How well did that work out? When the constituency that was all behind defunding the cops realized that the lawmakers were the ones hiring private police to protect them, they changed their tune pretty quickly didn’t they?

What happened when during the pandemic, the federal government started sending people stimulant checks to help those that had been laid off due to business closures? What happened was that the unemployment rate spiked, which everyone figured would happen. What they didn’t figure on was that after the worst of the pandemic was over, most of those people were willing to sit on their couch and collect payments or extended unemployment benefits as opposed to going back to work. Did it occur to anyone that if you’re going to pay people to stay home, people are going to stay home, even when you want them back to work?

Think back a few decades when the federal government decided to subsidize farmers for NOT growing certain crops. If you had 100 acres of land, and you were used to growing corn, if the government would pay you not to grow corn, how many farms switched to soybeans or wheat, AND got paid for not growing corn? Most people are not that stupid. If the government is going to send you money, you most likely are going to accept it. It’s only human nature.

So, if the state of Oregon says it’s OK to buy heroin on the streets of Portland or through a dispensary in Bend, then sure…people are going to experiment. People are going to get hooked on it. And people are going to OD on it. You don’t have to be a friggin’ medical wizzard to figure that one out.

And so it will go as liberals find out all of the stuff conservatives are telling them won’t work fails. Eventually they will come around because they’ll have to. Otherwise, we can just change the name of our country to North Venezuela.

Carry on world…you’re dismissed!

As If Dems Didn’t Have Enough To Worry About…

Can we stoke the anti-Democrat fire just a little bit more? Oh, it probably won’t effect you if you’re working and you get your healthcare through your workplace. It probably also won’t effect you if you’re on Medicare or Medicaid. But if you’re one of the 13.8 million Americans that have to use the “healthcare exchange” (read that as Obamacare) to get their healthcare insurance, you’re going to be pissed come October.

That’s because the increase coming this year is going to be huge!

See, last year, Biden signed the American Rescue Plan. Basically it subsidized a good portion of the increase in Obamacare. So people that use that particular method to get their healthcare did indeed see an increase, but nowhere near what they would have had the federal government not stepped in. Well, that program expires on December 31st this year. And with inflation at levels we haven’t seen in 40 years, and an economy teetering on the brink of recession, even some Democrats realize now is not the time to be renewing that program.

And that means that there is going to be a huge increase in the cost of Obamacare to some 13.8 million people, about two weeks prior to the midterm elections. And Dems just don’t have any way to handle that bad news.

Already only 25% of the country think we’re “on the right track”. Joe Biden has been upside down in polling on every single issue except how he handled COVID, and that was by the slimmest of margins. Democrats in both houses of Congress have to deal with high inflation, a poor economy, a southern border catastrophe, crime in the streets, school shootings, a war going on in Ukraine that we’re a part of (even if it’s only sending materiel and money), and an incredible pushback to the Woke community. If the Dems needed any further signs that the stars just aren’t aligned for them this year, this certainly handed it to them.

I mean, how do you think 13.8 million people are going to react when they see that their healthcare is going to be 20-25% more expensive in 2023? And these are most likely the people least able to deal with an increase that large.

Maybe that’s the reason why no one wants Joe Biden to campaign for them this year? Just a thought!

Carry on world…you’re dismissed!

EXTRA! Baby Formula Debacle

Well, this is one thing you really can’t hang on Joe Biden, if we are being totally honest and totally fair. The shortage of baby formula isn’t because Biden cancelled oil lease auctions, or decided to eighty-six the Keystone XL Pipeline. It’s not because he printed too much money at the beginning of last year (and the last year of the Trump administration).

It’s because of a recall. And it’s really NOT nationwide.

Oh, yes, it IS difficult to get baby formula, probably everywhere, but the crisis is only hitting in Iowa, South Dakota, North Dakota, Missouri, Texas, and Tennessee. In those six states, baby formula outages are at 40%. And the reason, believe it or not, is pretty normal.

The company that makes the baby formula, Abbott Nutrition recalled Similac, Alimentum and EleCare, the three brands that the company makes because four babies reportedly got sick from ingesting the formula. The complaints went to Food & Drug Administration, who notified Abbott, and they voluntarily pulled the baby formula from the shelves.

Apparently, the plant that makes the baby formula in Sturgis, Michigan was the one that was responsible for the recall, and Abbott Nutrition and the FDA are working together to get it back up and running as quickly as possible.

Now, that’s not saying that it’s not effecting other areas of the country, but it looks like it’s pretty well confined, at least on a “total outage” situation to the six states listed above. I’m sure the big box stores like Sam’s Club and Costco are seeing this type of shortage to some degree as well, though I must admit that I’m not a customer of this product, nor have I been for a really long time.

Still, it’s no consolation to the millions of affected families. But with all the problems our country is facing today, and the fact that most of them can be traced back to something the Biden administration has done or said, at least Joe can sleep better realizing he didn’t have anything to do with this debacle. That makes him one for 200. Still not good enough for the big leagues, Joe!

Carry on world…you’re dismissed!

Will The Supreme Court Leak Matter Come November?

It’s a question that will get you a million different answers depending on whom you ask. If you talk to Democrats, it’s the issue that they’ve been waiting for. If you talk to Republicans, it’s no big deal because there are a million other issues that are more prevalent. Will it matter at all?

I am not sure at this point. First of all, if the Supreme Court never had this leak, would it had changed the outcome next month? Doubtful. If they are going to find that the whole national abortion strategy should be a states’ rights issue, it wouldn’t matter if it came out in April, May, or June. When it comes out, regardless the outcome, it will have some impact, for sure.

Is it going to be the calm of the “big red storm” everybody has been predicting? Nope. Sorry, but there are just as many people that feel that abortion shouldn’t be legal and those that feel it should. It’s about as evenly divided as can be in this country. The last poll I saw said 51% said the Supreme Court should not overturn Roe. 49% said they should. That’s not what I would call enough to be the number one issue in an election.

When you look at inflation, supply chain problems, immigration out of control, crime in the streets, a looming recession, and a Congress that can’t get anything done, even though the Democrats control both houses of it, those are issues that matter more to people than abortion. And, even quite a few Democrats (Ruth Bader Ginsburg among them) have said that the logic behind Roe passing muster in 1973 was flawed beyond belief. Justices totally bypassed the 10th Amendment to get to the14th Amendment in finding a way to get it done.

Is this going to tip the balance of power in Congress? Nope. I know Dems are out there fundraising right now trying to tell people that “women’s health” is becoming the number one issue in the country. It hasn’t been for decades, and it won’t be this time around either. I don’t care what side of the abortion issue you’re on, there just aren’t going to be enough people fighting for it to really care and really make a difference. The Supreme Court, if indeed the leaked decision stands, is just correcting a mistake that it made some fifty years ago. I’m surprised actually, that it took this long to get it done.

I still think there is going to be somewhat of a red wave this November. This was a shock to Democrats, but only because they lost and they weren’t thinking they were going to lose. There is nothing that they can do at this point to right that ship because it’s sailed. Packing the court isn’t going to do it because a) there isn’t time and b) even if they got it through both houses of Congress, and got Biden to sign it into law, the blowback from the American people would be vicious. Deciding that the Justices should have term limits of some sort, works a little better in the minds of the public, but then the call for Congress to have term limits will be front and center and that’s something they don’t want to come within a hundred miles of.

And of course, you’ve got conservatives on both parties that are fundraising as well, saying that if Democrats succeed in keeping Congress, it pushes the US further and further to the left and the Supreme Court will be “punished” for what it did to abortion.

Breathe deep and don’t worry. November will be here soon enough!

Carry on world…you’re dismissed!

Is The Left Over-Reacting To Supreme Court Leak?

My initial hunch is of course they are. Anytime they are seeing anything that could even be construed as limiting abortion, they go bat-crazy. And so, it’s to be expected that Democrats are going to try and do everything in their power to keep that. The problem is very simple.

There isn’t a damn thing they can do about it.

The Supreme Court is the last stop on the railroad. There is no way to change what the court has said unless a future court decides to do what this one did, which was actually rectify a poor decision that was made under pressure from liberal women back in 1973. But we have to be very clear about what is and what isn’t happening. The Supreme Court is NOT over-turning Roe v. Wade per se.

What the Supreme Court is doing, IF what everyone has read by now in the leaked decision is accurate, is send back to the state of Mississippi the court case that came before the high court. That case limits abortions to 15 weeks (through the first trimester). Most people in the country (68% by the way according to a recent poll) say that they would agree with this limitation. Snowflake liberals don’t. They want abortion on demand up to and including birth. That is not the majority opinion in the country however. When you get closer to the actual birth, the number of people thinking at abortion should still be legal drops to 22%.

But the Supreme Court, by sending this case back to Mississippi (it’s called Dobbs v. Jackson in case you’re interested), it’s saying it’s a states’ rights issue and Mississippi has the right to decide this case on their own. That being said, Roe v. Wade is going to be changed because it isn’t a “national policy”, but abortion isn’t going to go away. States can decide if they want to have abortions made legal in their state, and if so, what, if any, limitations are going to be attached.

And actually, the liberals if they had an ounce of brains in their head, should be rejoicing on this one. Do you know how many abortions have been performed in this country since 1973? The answer is about 63 million. Now, let’s assume that 75% (a number I’m pulling out of the air) were Democrats and 25% were Republicans who got abortions. That means that Democrats have lost about 47,250,000 million new voters. And you think 12 or 13 million illegals coming into this country is a big deal? How close would ANY election be if Dems were to throw an additional 47 million votes their candidates way? You wouldn’t HAVE to get rid of the filibuster. We’d be a one-party nation in a matter of two decades. But that’s the short-sightedness of the left. Give me a way to not have a baby that I would have raised to be liberal! Duh!

Anyway, Roe v. Wade may be changed, it may not legalize abortions everywhere, but it will still be around. You can always drop by California, or New York, or Oregon, or Washington State, and get your abortion is you want.

Carry on world…you’re dismissed!

Putin Facing Surgery

Vladimir Putin is this year’s “Worst Man In The World” after his unabashed invasion of neighboring Ukraine and killing thousands of it’s citizens in a totally unprovoked attack. And there is word out of Moscow that Putin, who wanted to see Russia get back some of it’s former glory as the USSR, may not be around to see it all come to fruition.

The Sun is reporting that Putin is going to undergo surgery for abdominal cancer, but also suffers from Parkinson’s Disease. Putin intends to turn over the reins of the country to top Russian spy, Nikolai Patrushev, at least while he’s incapacitated.

Unnamed sources reportedly high up in the Russian government say that Putin is not in good health and said that the country is preparing “for the worst” in dealing with his health. Bad health among Russian and Soviet leaders is pretty much a job requirement. If you look at all of the premiers and presidents over there that have died or had serious health issues while in office the number is staggering. Those leaders have included, Vladimir Lennin who died of a stroke; Joseph Stalin who died of cerebral hemorrhage; Nikita Krushchev, who died of a heart attack; Leonid Brezhnev, who died of unspecified causes; Yuri Andropov who died of kidney failure; Konstantin Chernenko who died of heart failure; and Boris Yeltsin who died after having five heart attacks. That means that going back to the founding of the Soviet Union in 1917, all but Gregory Malenkov, Mikhail Gorbachov, Dmitry Medvedev, and Putin have died in office.

The only thing known about Patrushev is that he is a top notch spy, is very tight with Putin, which basically means, he’ll follow Putin’s road map in governing.

It’s really rare that this type of news leaks out of Russia prior to a president passing away. Normally, there is only an announcement afterwards. It’s usually short and sweet, and Russia-watchers line up to see who’s seated where at the funeral as that usually indicates who is next in line for the presidency.

Carry on world…you’re dismissed!

EXTRA! Roe v Wade To Be Overturned!

I know…I couldn’t believe my eyes when I read it either. But Fox News is now reporting that a “unprecedented leaked draft” of the abortion case that will be made public in June was written by Justice Samuel Alito, and basically knocks down Roe v. Wade, giving the states the right to determine whether abortion is legal in their state. The leaked draft was obtained by Politico.

According to Politico and Fox News, the draft was written in February. It’s not clear whether the draft has been revised or rewritten since that time. “We hold that Roe and Casey must be overruled,” Justice Samuel Alito writes in the document, labeled the “Opinion of the Court” for the case Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization. “It is time to heed the Constitution and return the issue of abortion to the people’s elected representatives.”

So the whole case of abortion does not come down to whether or not it should be legal for a woman to actually HAVE an abortion, or whether the fetus is defined as a “viable mass” or a “living being”. It actually comes down to a 10th Amendment argument that the federal government isn’t given the right by the Constitution to make that decision, but that decision can be made, and should be made by the states on an individual basis.

What does this all mean? Well, basically it’s going to mean that blue states typically will pass laws that allow abortion, such as what Colorado has already done, and others are starting to do, fearing that this ruling was in the offing. Other states, like here in Arizona are passing laws that basically deny women the right to an abortion.

And IF this comes to pass (again, at this time, it’s not been confirmed nor denied by the Supreme Court), you can count on people wearing the funky looking hats to parade up and down for months on end at the Supreme Court. My hunch is, it will also renew Democrats’ pledge to pack the court, or make the Justices’ terms less than lifetime. That will be something that the Senate will have to decide, and Joe Manchin and Kyrsten Sinema have both said they would vote against it. So even if there were a way to figure it as a “reconciliation bill”, they are still going to fall a couple votes short of passage at the current stage. And if the Republicans take over both houses of Congress, it’ll be a dead issue anyway.

Carry on world…you’re dismissed!

EXTRA! Free At Last!

Anyone that has traveled in the past couple of years has had to put up with wearing a mask while on a cruise ship, a train, a bus, or a plane. For a short time type of deal, it’s not that bad, and most of us just slogged through it. For longer trips (like a two-week cruise?) it can be a nightmare. And I really feel sorry for people that work in industries that are still requiring them to be masked at work!

But thanks to Federal Court Judge, Katheryn Kimble Mizelle, those days appear to be over. She issued a ruling stating the Centers for Disease Control has over-stepped their boundaries by issuing a three week extension of the mask mandate for folks traveling around the country.

Now, by way of a personal story, as you’re reading this, you should know that my wife and I SHOULD be on a cruise through the Panama Canal right now. We cancelled it in December for two reasons. One is the fact that neither of us wanted to wear a mask any time we were outside our cabin (as the cruise line was requiring), and the second was the cruise line had cancelled three of our four shore excursions. What’s the sense in spending that type of money to go on a great multi-week vacation if you can’t get off the ship, and you have to wear a mask? So, we decided to cancel.

I feel much better about this decision now, but am still grateful that Judge Mizelle made her ruling. Delta Airlines released an interesting statement that basically asked everyone for patients in dealing with the situation, as not everyone in TSA or the Airlines would get the news at the same time, and it may take a day or two to disseminate that information throughout the industry. They are exactly right. But overall, this is good news.

I realize that there have been several states that are getting surges in COVID still today, and I know people are still dying from the disease. But if you’ve decided to get the vaccination (totally your choice in my world), and you’ve gotten the booster (ditto), why are you worried? You should be covered. Or at least you’ve lessened the severity of the disease. Now, I won’t say it’s a guarantee, there are no guarantees in life, but I can tell you out here in the desert, most have been vaccinated to the point we reached “herd immunity” back in the summer of last year.

It’s going to be great to be able to get back to normal when traveling again. I know the Biden administration thinks this is a terrible idea, but I thought mask mandates were a terrible idea, so I guess we’re even. Enjoy breathing without a mask. You’ve earned that right!

Carry on world…you’re dismissed!

A Word Of Warning About Obamacare

OK, I’ll preface this by saying that normally I am happy to give my political viewpoint about stuff, but I usually reserve glimpses into my personal life to maybe my family’s birthdays or other things like that. I don’t think this blog is about me personally. It’s about politics and media.

Having said that, I’m going to give you a strict word of warning moving forward about Obamacare. Now, I need to give you a little history before we get to the warning.

I retired at 54 years of age. My wife went back to work when we moved out to the desert, and worked for five years. So, she retired about five years ago. I had a couple of jobs since then that I did simply because we needed healthcare insurance. Three years ago, we went on Obamacare because it was cheap. But oh, there is a caveat there!

In 2021, my wife went on Medicare upon turning 65. Obamacare doesn’t allow the insurance companies to just drop one person from the coverage. They cancel the policy and you have to pick another policy. I was going through a firm in Florida to help me weave my way through the land mines. And usually, they did a good job. When my wife went on Medicare, I had to go onto a three month Obamacare policy. I picked the cheapest policy I could, and the plan was to have that for three months, then go on a two-month “short term” policy in January and February of this year, and go on Medicare in March. At least that was the plan.

However, the guy I had been working with for the last few years never told me that I had to cancel the policy in December or it would automatically renew. He knew I didn’t need Obamacare in 2022, and failed to tell me to call the insurance folks and cancel. I thought he was handling it, as he had been handling everything for the past couple of years. My mistake!

I started getting bills from the Obamacare people in January, February and March. I ignored them because I thought it was a clerical error. Nope. He never called and cancelled the policy. Now, the rub is, you get a “tax credit” with Obamacare that’s based on your income. If you make more than what you said you’d make at the beginning of the year, you have to pay back the extra tax credit the feds give you. That could be upwards of $20,000! Well, I didn’t pay the premium in January, so the policy was cancelled as of January 31st. But what they don’t tell you (and this is the warning), if you’re on Obamacare for one month, you have to follow their income rules for the whole year. So, living on next to nothing as we had been doing for the past two years, and looking forward to not having to do that this year was a waste. It looks like if I go over the extremely low income level I had set (and wanted to avoid), I would end up having to pay back the tax credit Obamacare afforded me. Thank God it wasn’t a huge amount to begin with.

To fight it is going to cost a LOT more money than just paying back the one month of tax credit, so that’s what I’ll probably end up doing. But beware. IF you go on Obamacare, realize that you a) automatically get renewed until you yourself cancel the policy and b) you will most likely owe the tax credit if you go over whatever your income level was set.

I had to learn the hard way. Thankfully, it’s only going to cost about $500.

Carry on world…you’re dismissed!

Could COVID Be “Officially” Over?

It kind of looks that way. Especially if you understand what the US Senate has just sent over to the House of Representatives as far as a funding bill for the rest of the year.

In case you missed it, the Senate has passed a $1.5 trillion bill that would fund the government through the end of September (the end of the fiscal year). And while Biden is going to get some $13.6 billion in aid to Ukraine that he asked for, he’s going to not be happy that all funding for COVID got stripped out of the Senate’s version of the bill. That means in essence, the US Government is going to be out of the COVID business as of the 18th of this month.

There won’t be money to buy more vaccines; there won’t be money to buy more “boosters”; and if your insurance company isn’t in a generous mood come this fall when the flu shots roll out, you may be on the hook for paying for your COVID shot as well. And if another wave of COVID should hit? Well, there won’t be any funding to deal with it.

And, I guess I should throw in that if you haven’t already signed up for the “free” test kits that you can get delivered to your home through the post office, when the supply runs out, there won’t be any money to replenish the kits. Also, if it’s a really bad variant that hits, and the country shuts down, there won’t be money to send to you. No more “stimi checks”.

Frankly, it’s about time. This has been a boondoggle that has carried on far too long. Omicron was a variant that yes, harmed and even killed some people, but when you look at the numbers, we’ve turned the corner and the succeeding variants have been more contagious, but less lethal, so it’s kind of like the flu in that regard. And while the feds have extended the mask mandate on air travel through April 18th, they really see the writing on the wall. America is just plain tired of COVID and doesn’t want anything to do with it any longer.

Pretty much everyone that wanted to get vaccinated has been. Pretty much everybody that wanted to get a booster shot has gotten it. And pretty much America wants to be done with masks and social distancing. It’s now been over two years dealing with this. Joe Biden swore during the 2020 campaign that “he had a plan to fix this”. His plan allowed over 700,000 people to die (compared to about 200,000 under Donald Trump). Some plan! It’s just another example of a Biden screw up that has cost Americans.

I think at this point, the vast majority of people worried about COVID are the ones sitting in the halls of Congress, and at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. The rest of America has moved on.

Carry on world…you’re dismissed!