Rent Seeking

Doing the right thing for the wrong reasons.

“They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety." - Benjamin Franklin

This piece started off when I was asked for my $0.02 this weekend on something in the local paper (which I freely admit that I do still read), written by someone whom I consider an absolute imbecile (which I’d told my friend on multiple occasions what I thought of this particular writer).

Still, if this wasn’t coming from a friend of mine, it probably would’ve ended differently.

{Post continues below the fold}

 

You Betcha! (4)Nuh Uh.(0)

It’s The Constitution .. Stupid.

The US Constitution being ignored is not a compelling reason for a Con-Con.

Donald Trump did (with a pen) what we asked for our GOP legislature to do for the last 6+ years of controlling the house.

Whether he realized it or not, he might well have set the tone for examining presidential actions, and more importantly how the bureaucracy interfaces with the public going forward.  Citing the constitution, the Trump administration has declared it will no longer pay for health care subsidies, period.  From ABC news:

”  the White House said the government cannot legally continue to pay the so-called cost-sharing subsidies because they lack a formal authorization by Congress.

However, the administration had been making the payments from month to month, even as Trump threatened to cut them off to force Democrats to negotiate over health care. The subsidies help lower co-pays and deductibles for people with modest incomes.

Halting the payments would trigger a spike in premiums for next year, unless Trump reverses course or Congress authorizes the money. The next payments are due around Oct. 20. “

Unless he “reverses course?”

He cannot reverse course.  It would be as illegal as Obama making the payments in the first place.  In fact, this very act was already preceded by a declaration that the very payment of those subsidies was unconstitutional, not just yesterday, but actually in APRIL of this year by US attorney general Jeff Sessions:

” Sessions said during a Fox News interview that the payments to insurers, which reimburse them for lowering the cost of copays and deductibles for low-income Obamacare customers and are the subject of a House lawsuit, should be appropriated by Congress.

Sessions’ comments come as insurers are concerned whether the Trump administration will continue to reimburse them for the cost-sharing reductions.

Insurers are required under federal law to provide the reductions for Obamacare and have been getting reimbursed by the federal government. They are expected to receive $7 billion this year.

But Sessions said a lawsuit filed by the House against the Obama administration in 2014 “has validity to it.”

The lawsuit argues that the Obama administration illegally bypassed Congress and didn’t get an appropriation for the payments.

Nobody could say they didn’t see this coming.

But where is the Michigan angle you ask?

You Betcha! (13)Nuh Uh.(1)

So You Want To Be In Government?

Why would anyone bother getting involved JUST because of a class?

Some folks think that citizen engagement is pitiful, so we are going to have classes on how to be engaged.

Let that sink in.  You are too busy dealing with all of the complications of life (jobs, family, American Idol), added to the complications of government (Taxes, zoning, naming of trail systems), and frankly, you have zero interest in managing the community budget.  Is there time left in your day to fully engage?

Unless Idol is cancelled, your box under the bridge falls apart, family members around you stop going to school, or stop getting married, or never need to go to the hospital, those few extra moments you are blessed with are precious.  That free time is becoming rarer as the more dedicated mini-Stalins take the reigns at all level of government. (yes, I purposefully avoided the ‘Hitler’ word. )

We are over managed by an out-of-control Federal bureaucracy, and our local governments have never been so in-your-face with private property rights deprecation in the history of our ‘conquered’ new world. (Columbus day wasn’t that long ago)  Dealing with what used to be the simplest of issues now requires a council meeting, permission, a check, and a rubber stamp.

But MSU extension has the fix.  Lets teach more dunderheads how to rule effectively!  The TC Ticker lays it out:

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Deja Vu (all over again)

Remember: Give generously and give often to these pillars of republican values!

Now, why does this list look so familiar???

 

Submitted without any further comment.

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Crony Capitalism: Not Just For Companies And Politicians!

'Scandal Free' Obama Administration AG Eric Holder Spiked Criminal Charges Against UAW VP General Holiefield Sometime In 2014.

Detroit is atwitter over the criminal indictments that dropped on 26 July against former FCA (Chrysler) labor negotiator Alphons Iacobelli, UAW VP General Holiefield’s widow, Monica Morgan, and FCA financial analyst Jerome Durden. They looted the the UAW-Chrysler National Training Center (NTC) and bought a lot of bling with the proceeds, which were laundered through a charity called Leave the Light On Foundation created by General Holiefield.  Criminal use of bogus charities is a whole story in itself best left to another day.

Prior to this little imbroglio, General R. Holiefield and his wife Monica Morgan are fondly remembered for a ‘gun cleaning accident’ on 30 December 2013. In light of last week’s indictments, that event is now probably subject to some reinterpretation.

Were they battling over ill-gotten lucre?

You Betcha! (14)Nuh Uh.(0)

Battles of the Lower Depths in Detroit

Davis et al v. Detroit Downtown Development Authority et al; U.S Eastern District of Michigan Case Number: 2:17-cv-11742

Eastern District of Michigan U.S. District Judge Mark A. Goldsmith ruled on June 19th that Detroit’s Downtown Development Authority can issue $34.5 million in bonds to pay for the relocation of the Detroit Pistons basketball team to the new Little Caesar’s Arena. The Judge’s ruling rejected arguments that the eventual use of school tax money to repay these tax increment finance bonds violates Detroit residents’ constitutional and statutory right to vote on a school tax money diversions.

Judge Goldsmith’s ruling denied Robert Davis‘ and D. Etta Wilcoxon’s motion for a preliminary injunction or temporary restraining order in their lawsuit against the Detroit Downtown Development Authority. The Judge said the plaintiffs did not establish the need for an emergency injunction. The Judge politely neglected to mention that Robert Davis was sentenced in the very same Eastern District U.S. District Court to an 18 month Club Fed vacation for stealing $ 200,000 from the Highland Park School District in 2014. Mr. Davis should still be on probation for this minor peccadillo.

One complication here is that the tax monies being diverted are not those of the current Detroit Community Public School District, but rather those of the legacy Detroit Public School District which was reduced to zombie status last year in the DPS bailout. Is the old DPS really a school district today, or just a financial entity? The Detroit Community Public School District is a near bankrupt ward of the State of Michigan that won’t receive any Detroit property tax revenues until the legacy DPS district debts are paid off. No one alive today will live to see that.

You Betcha! (13)Nuh Uh.(0)

Score another win for crony capitalism.

When will you little people ever learn! I GET want I want to get. Thanks to the Michigan republicans…

 

And we cannot get broad-based tax relief…why?

Submitted without further comment.

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And THIS is what we get when the republican party controls the House, Senate & White House???

If Pres. Trump fails to veto this, I easily see him a being a one and done president.

Perhaps yesterday’s coverage of the May Day “celebrations” touched something inside of Congressional republicans?

Perhaps the were “channeling their inner Obama™”?

Whatever the reason, sometime over the past few days, Congressional republicans clearly demonstrated some severe cognitive dissonance with the American Voter (to say nothing about the election results from last November).

More below…

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Michigan republicans should just concede the next election to the democrats right now.

Really! I’m a conservative just like the rest of you. Pinky swear!

Lil’ Guv Brian Calley, accompanied Gov. Snyder to Macomb County this week at the Macomb Chamber Alliance luncheon, and after a predictable speech on their successes in office, “teases” a potential run for Michigan Governor.

No, I’m not going to drive up web traffic to his soon-to-be campaign site by posting any links to it here.

..

Honestly!

This is the best that the republican kakistocracy can do?

So far, Team “r” has a candidate who supported bailing out Detroit and giving local governments the opportunity to drive themselves even further in debt by floating bonds to pay for promises they made to their employees which they knew they couldn’t possibly keep.

Now we’re seeing a candidate whose conservative philosophical leanings are questionable, at best.

Does Snydercaid, Common Core or using the power of state government to pay for his own daughter’s autism coverage ring a bell to anyone here?

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Solar Powered Failure

Same scat - different day.

Here’s to still and cloudy days

There must be a class in our taxpayer subsidized higher education system that trains government employees for subsiding business ventures that cannot survive on their own.  A preparation of sorts for the most productive work in Michigan state government.

A123 systems, LG Chem, etc..  Energy is the hot topic, but renewable energy has gotten a stake of the treasury in the past few years.

And to date, it has never been completely debunked as being a future solution for diminished resources.

That’s OK actually.  Under certain circumstances, renewable options provide ways to solve all manner of the issues.  Lawn lighting, roadside signs, or limited use for the cabin in the woods, all of which can be effectively served with solar, or other off-the-grid generation

You Betcha! (9)Nuh Uh.(0)