Tuesday, September 28, 2021
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PTBC has over 12,000 articles written by several columnists, over 20+ years.

U.S. Republicans and Blue Dog Democrats barking up the wrong tree on health care

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How to lose

BC Liberal Party website — They obviously put out a news release announcing their leadership debate, stating, as even their own website states, that you can stream it at their website. The Globe and Mail said so too, even. But go to their website, and nothing like an anticipatory video teaser is there. Like they're not even set up for it. Or don't care if you watch it. You can, they say, watch it on Facebook. But I won't support that crap. So heckofa job, Libbies.

Click to (not) watch it


Canadians love their cheap Chinese trinkets despite the moral question

Globe and Mail — Startling reports out of the Port of Vancouver indicate just how much Canadians care that communist China was (and still is) holding Canadian and American citizens illegally, steals intellectual property from everyone around the world, is a rogue racist state, an authoritarian and totalitarian dictatorship, which is bent on global communist domination, which enslaves and arguably eliminates ethnic groups, and which pollutes the entire globe to beat hell.

The Port of Vancouver is sending record numbers of empty shipping containers to Asia ... The reason so many shipping containers are going back to Asia filled with nothing but air has to do with a surge in consumer demand for Asian goods ...

...There were 597,443 TEUs of empty containers exported from Vancouver in the first eight months of this year, up 89 per cent from the same period in 2020. And 2020 was previously the record-high year for empty-container shipments from the port.

Almost half of all the containers that have left Vancouver so far this year have been empty.

In total, the Port of Vancouver has handled 2.55 million TEUs of both imports and exports during the first eight months of 2021, up 17 per cent from the same period in 2020.

China is the largest shipper into the Port of Vancouver of containerized merchandise, including consumer goods.

What happened to all that bellyaching about "sustainability?" It doesn't apply to the country of Canada itself? Trudeau? Liberals? Maybe lose the woke BS, lose the love and admiration for "that basic dictatorship" and labels that read "Fabrique en Chine," raise the Canadian flag that you've shamed from its now months-long half-mast detention, and show you give more of a crap about Canada and its real, actual issues.

Hey has China relaxed its restrictions on tourists from the west yet? Asking for literally nobody.

Wall Street Journal —Don't plan your next trip to China without writing your will and saying goodbye to loved ones. The WSJ's editorial board is not impressed - with China or with President Biden and his team of surrender monkeys.

China’s Hostage Triumph

The U.S. lets Huawei’s CFO off easy, and Beijing frees two Canadians.   
By The Editorial Board
Updated Sept. 27, 2021 7:56 am ET

Westerners working in China are officially on notice. You could be arrested on trumped up charges at any time and used as hostages to promote Communist Party interests. That’s the message from the humiliating U.S. surrender to China’s hostage diplomacy in the case of Huawei chief financial officer Meng Wanzhou.

Canadian authorities arrested Ms. Meng in 2018 at the request of the U.S., which charged her with bank and wire fraud. Under a deferred prosecution agreement (DPA) reached Friday, Ms. Meng was allowed to return to China without going to trial. She merely admitted to facts she had previously denied. Shortly thereafter, and right on cue, China released two Canadians it had arrested on phony charges not long after Ms. Meng’s arrest.

China’s immediate release of businessman Michael Spavor and former diplomat Michael Kovrig proves their arrest was a hostage-taking to pressure Canada and the U.S. over Ms. Meng. In China the law serves the Party. But in the U.S. the law is supposed to operate independent of political interests. ...

I'd no sooner visit China than I would North Korea, Iran, or Cuba.

“Health Reasons.” Fer sure, China.

Globe and Mail — It's not the Globe and Mail's fault. In this case, they're just reporting. And it — China — is just utterly insulting our intelligence and totally disrespecting us. I didn't even read the article because I don't take well to being insulted by communists or a-holes. But on the other hand, this one is all Globe and Mail. For me it's about the contrast between how they treated the last president's handling of the border crisis — a problem not of his own making; and how they are treating this president's handling of a far worse crisis of his and his comrades' own making. Media bias 101? Or them more simply utterly insulting our intelligence and totally disrespecting us?

Joe Oliver for leader? Alas no. But heed to his leadership.

Financial Post — Joe Oliver penned a good column today offering good conservative sense for Conservatives. So that's something different and worthwhile for you to read today in the papers increasingly filled with total bunk and muck — usually from lefties — about how the Conservatives need to go still further leftward to win. It's headlined "Conservatives must persuade the electorate, not pander to the left." And it's worth your read.

"...There is an economic and cultural route to broaden the appeal of Conservative values and policies: bring the public to you, rather than mimic the left-wing’s latest faddish ideals and retreaded socialist truths. That is what leadership is all about. ..."

Ronald Reagan believed in and practiced this philosophy very effectively, making wonderful speaches counseling his fellow conservatives to speak up — "in bold colors" — to convince the electorate to vote for the values — conservative values — which most of their fellow electorate actually already believed in. And he was one of the best and most popular presidents in US history. Joe Oliver wrote today about some of those Canadian conservative values, which, similarly, are actually Canadian values.
Joe Oliver isn't running to be the leader. He's 81 and is rightly enjoying retirement. But anybody who wants to follow in Ronald Regan's — or Joe Oliver's — footsteps is more than welcome to step up at this time, please.

Advice to GOP, which Canada’s CPC should heed: Just. Say. No.

Washington Post — From this surprising source  — the...

Lefty Mayor caught maskless but it’s ok: “I was feelin’ the spirit!”

National Review — Another article you won't read in 99% of the "news" media because, oh do I even have to say it?... she's a lefty mayor! (and we can well imagine the "news" media's faux outrage if she was a he and he was a Republican):

The mayor of San Francisco [London Breed] says that she shouldn’t be criticized for breaking her own COVID rules, because, and I quote, “I was feeling the spirit and I wasn’t thinking about a mask.” CBS reports:

“We don’t need the fun police to come in and micromanage and tell us what we should or shouldn’t be doing,” said Breed during an interview to address the controversy.

The city’s health order states attendees at live indoor performances must remain masked except when actively eating or drinking. Breed maintained that she was drinking at the time.

“My drink was sitting at the table,” said Breed. “I got up and started dancing because I was feeling the spirit and I wasn’t thinking about a mask.”
As Charles C.W. Cooke points out, the hideousness doesn't stop just at her hypocrisy, her failure to take responsibility for her own actions, or her elitist rule-breaking, it's the fact that she laments the notion of "the fun police," when, in fact, as mayor and as the perpetrator of these asinine rules, she IS "the fun police."

Best post-election headline so far

Wall Street Journal — They get the headline just about right: Their opener:

The late British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher counseled that in politics “standing in the middle of the road is very dangerous. You get knocked down by the traffic from both sides.” That’s the lesson delivered to Canada’s Conservative Party leader Erin O’Toole in Monday’s national election.

I like that they added this because Canadian "news" media are loathed to mention it:

Yet while they again won the popular vote, they finished a distant second in seat count with about 119, two seats down from 2019. (By the way, the Tories have won the popular vote in five of the last six elections, which is a lesson for Americans who think this only happens because of the Electoral College.)

They see what I see. O'Toole: Speaking in pale pastels — largely pink — instead of bold colors. Lesson #596 for the Conservative Party of Canada. They'll learn someday. Maybe.
Read the WSJ take here. (Free link)

BC’s NDP gov and their “news” media divisions hiding stats and facts? Here’s one.

health-infobase.canada.ca For all the noise from the Canadian national "news" media, you'd think Ontario was the only province in the country, and that it's doing terribly with regard to the Wuhan Virus (which everybody still calls "COVID" on orders from the Communist Party of China). That's not news to anyone outside of Ontario. What might be news to people both outside and inside of Ontario is that BC's rate of death is nearly twice that of Ontario.
Don't worry lefties, even people in BC don't know that, because the "news" media in BC are actually cheerleaders for the NDP government of BC — much as the national news media is actually a division of the federal Liberal Party (well and the Ontario Liberal Party of course). Ontario is led by a party with the word "Conservative" in it, even though "Progressive" is the first and foremost word and concept in their party name and style of governance. But, you know, it's just deathn shit. Politics is way more important to the "news" media.
Facts. Get 'em anywhere you can, because you can't reliably get them from the "news" media.
See also:
And from liberalvision CTV: Secrecy over B.C.'s true number of hospitalized COVID-19 patients

The Article

Critics of U.S. President Barack Obama’s desired health care reforms – including so-called “Blue Dog Democrats” – claim that his plan is just too expensive to implement, and according to the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office, they may be right. Still, the Blue Dogs, like their Republican colleagues, are barking up the wrong tree. The principle flaw with the Administration’s plan isn’t its cost, but its emphasis on a government insurance program as a means of keeping those costs down.

It’s widely believed that principle reason why millions of Americans currently do not have insurance is because they can’t afford its high cost. A government-run insurance plan, it’s argued, would not only provide these people with an affordable insurance option, it would also result in reduced premiums for everyone since private insurers would have to lower their rates or risk losing customers to the cheaper government plan.

On the surface, the strategy seems sound enough – private insurers would indeed trim waste, and then profit, in an effort to lower their premiums and retain their customers. Eventually, however, there would be no more waste or profit left to cut. What do private insurers do then? How would they compete with a government program that relies on taxpayer subsidies rather than efficiency to keep its own rates low?

What’s more, many American businesses and individuals would switch their current private insurance to government insurance because the latter would be less expensive. This would exert upward pressure on private insurers’ premiums as they struggle to maintain a pool of funds large enough to pay claims from.

Under such conditions it would be virtually impossible for private insurers to stay in business. Some would adjust to the new market by changing the products they sell, but most would abandon the market altogether, leaving the government with a de facto monopoly on health care insurance.

By paying claims, at least in part, out of general revenues or through taxpayer-backed borrowing, a government insurance plan would shield health care consumers from the cost of their consumption – that’s the whole idea behind it. But it’s precisely this link between health care consumers and the cost of their consumption that regulates the growth in demand for health care services. By eliminating that restraining force, government-run insurance would precipitate an explosion in demand and related costs at the very moment taxpayers are assuming liability to pay those costs.

Supporters of government insurance believe they have the answer to this dilemma. They propose the creation of a special regulatory council made up of health care experts to monitor the system and impose some sort of discipline. As of yet, the exact powers this council would have, have not been defined, but it doesn’t take an advanced degree in public administration to know that the only way it would be able to achieve its goal would be to establish strict limits on what services a government insurance plan would pay for, and how much it would pay for them.

There’s a word for this – Rationing.

Of course, consumers would still be able to opt out of the government plan, or they would be able to obtain private supplemental insurance to cover those things the government plan would not, but few would since there wouldn’t be many private insurers left selling such coverage, and the premiums would be exorbitant. The de facto government monopoly in health insurance would quickly become a de facto nationalization of the health care industry as a whole, even if the government doesn’t actually own the hospitals or directly employ the doctors and nurses.

That is essentially the system in place in Canada today, where most doctors and nurses in aren’t government employees – they’re private contractors who bill the government for the services they provide to patients.

In Ontario, like other provinces, fees are set by the government – in consultation with doctors – in order to keep overall costs to the system down. The total amount that individual doctors can bill the government plan each year is also capped to keep them from “cheating” the system by setting up a volume practice; that is, encouraging, and then charging for, “unnecessary” appointments by patients. It seems not to have occurred to the “experts” that the number of “unnecessary” appointments may have more to do with patients not having to pay for their visits than it does with doctors’ greed. In any event, an unintended (and bizarre) by-product of this cap is that new patients are regularly turned away by doctors who have “too many” already.

To make matters worse, because doctors’ and nurses’ education in Canada is heavily subsidized by taxpayers, government gets to decide – in consultation with experts – how many will be trained each year. The number of students that medical schools can accept each year depends on the amount of money available in the budget for training, not the actual demand.

Is it any wonder that there’s a shortage of doctors and nurses in Canada?

Most Canadian cities have fewer MRI machines than many individual American hospitals, and according to a report released last year by the Cancer Advocacy Coalition of Canada, Ontario – the country’s wealthiest and most populous province – boasted a grand total of just nine PET scanners for the whole province, and some of these were sitting idle because hospitals couldn’t hire the technicians to run them without exceeding the limits placed on their spending. This is the real legacy of government-run health insurance in Canada, and it’s what awaits Americans too if they travel down the same path.

Are there good things about the Canadian system? Of course there are. For starters, everyone is insured with no limit on coverage, an important factor that should not be ignored. But there’s a trade-off: chronic shortages of personnel and equipment mean that timely treatment for anything other than a sudden and catastrophic illness or injury is generally unavailable in Canada. The result is that Canadians with serious chronic illnesses either languish on waiting lists for treatment, or they obtain treatment in… you guessed it – America, and pay for the treatment themselves.

None of this is to say that there aren’t significant problems with health care in the U.S. that ought to be addressed, particularly when it comes to insurance issues. The notion that a government-run insurance plan can be relied upon to resolve any of these issues is dangerously misguided though. At best, government insurance would sink American health care into a pool of mediocrity; at worse, it would deny or delay life-saving treatment to those who need it.

This isn’t fear-mongering – it’s a daily reality for many of us in Canada that Americans must be made aware of before it’s too late.

Joel Johannesen
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