The U.S. government has a problem with dead people. For one thing, it pays them way too much money. In the past few years, Social Security paid $133 million to beneficiaries who were deceased. The federal employee retirement system paid more than $400 million to retirees who had passed away. And an aid program spent $3.9 million in federal money to pay heating and air-conditioning bills for more than 11,000 of the dead. These mistakes are part of a surprising glitch at the heart of the federal bureaucracy. Because of a jury-rigged and outdated system meant to track deaths, the government
Nine skydivers and two pilots survived a mid-air crash at 12,000 feet this weekend after those aboard were able to safely parachute to the ground. Two of those aboard suffered minor injuries. The surreal crash along the Wisconsin-Minnesota border left one plane totally destroyed, forcing its pilot to eject to safety. The other plane was eventually able to land. Both planes were owned by Skydive Superior. According to a local Fox affiliate, authorities still don´t know why the two planes collided, though they were flying close to each other at the time, one following the other. Just before impact, the lead
Anyone who pays attention to politics can see that when Democrats attack, they speak from the same text, and when they vote, they march in lockstep. If one Democrat says the wealthy must pay their “fair share,” all Democrats do — regardless of the merits of the charge. If their leaders say Republicans want to shut down the government in order to deny Americans affordable care, the rest of the party will follow their lead — whether the claim is true or not. When a key program like Obamacare is the issue, not only do Democrats back it with one
Society crumbles when it takes cues from the underclass When Snooki, whose talents include getting sloppy drunk and throwing up on camera, made Barbara Walters’ “Ten Most Fascinating People” list a few years back, one could only ask: Was Octomom not available? Last year, “Here Comes Honey Boo Boo,” which features a cornucopia of social ills, was TLC’s highest-rated show, attracting more cable viewers than the Republican National Convention, which had the misfortune to share the time slot with the charmers from Georgia. The show’s matriarch, June Shannon, has four daughters by four men, one of whose names she can’t recall. White Trash
The Revolt of the Kulaks Has Begun, February 22, 2009, just over a month after Obama’s first inauguration: In the end, as must all economic redistributors, Obama either will have to resort to repressive measures, or he will have to abandon his redistributive plans. The great Obamacare reform is turning into the great thrust of tens of millions of people onto Medicaid. The problem is, fewer and fewer doctors are willing to take Medicaid patients because the reimbursements are so low. I have met numerous doctors who tell me they either refuse Medicaid patients or restrict them because the reimbursements do not cover their
FORT WORTH — Former House Speaker Jim Wright was denied a voter ID card Saturday at a Texas Department of Public Safety office. “Nobody was ugly to us, but they insisted that they wouldn’t give me an ID,” Wright said. The legendary Texas political figure says that he has worked things out with DPS and that he will get a state-issued personal identification card in time for him to vote Tuesday in the state and local elections. But after the difficulty he had this weekend getting a proper ID card, Wright, 90, expressed concern that such problems could deter others from voting and
Instead of being remembered for fundamentally changing the health care landscape in America for the better, President Barack Obama may instead go down as one of the most disconnected, too-cool-for-school chief executives in U.S. history. And he better hope that it doesn´t get any worse than that, for his flubbing of the Obamacare rollout threatens the very success of what is otherwise a noble attempt to make sure everybody has adequate and affordable medical insurance. That was the whole point of the Affordable Care Act when Obama signed it into law in 2010. And from that point on, despite the law´s flaws,
The pols and pundits can argue and fingerpoint until they’re blue in the — finger? — but Obamacare’s numbers paint a bleak picture of broken promises and outright lies. After a full month, nearly 40,000 people have successfully signed up for health insurance at HealthCare.gov, out of an administration goal of over seven million by the end of March. At that rate, the administration will have met its goal sometime in the autumn — of 2028. Mind you, the goal of Obamacare was to provide coverage for some 47,000,000 uninsured Americans. So take those 15 years and multiply them by about
You Millenials voted for Obama by a margin of 28 percent, which will make it a lot easier for me to accept the benefits you will be paying for. We warned you that liberalism was a scam designed to take the fruits of your labor and transfer it to us, the older, established generation. Oh, and also to the couch-dwelling, Democrat-voting losers who live off of food stamps and order junk from QVC with their Obamaphones. You didn’t listen to us. Maybe you’ll listen to pain. I have been told that being hard on you Millennials will turn you against conservatism, that
It was quite the weekend of, shall we say, managing expectations in Washington. Erika already pointed out that the original roll out for the whole, “if you like your plan” may have been questioned internally by subject matter experts and advisors, but hey… that didn’t matter. See, we never really meant all the plans. Just the good ones. Another theme you previously heard from administration officials over and over again dealt with how many people absolutely, positively, without a doubt would need to be enrolled in the program in order for it to be able to stand on its own
Denmark was the only European country to save almost all of its Jewish residents from the Holocaust. After being tipped off about imminent roundups by prominent Nazis, resisters evacuated the country´s 7,000 Jews to Sweden by boat. A new book examines this historical anomaly. They left at night, thousands of Jewish families, setting out by car, bicycle, streetcar or train. They left the Danish cities they had long called home and fled to the countryside, which was unfamiliar to many of them. Along the way, they found shelter in the homes of friends or business partners, squatted in abandoned summer homes
A recent story concerning the French youth is fascinating. It reports that a poll conducted by the leftist newspaper Le Monde shows that the French are not happy with their socialist government. Seventy percent now believe that taxes are too high, and 80% hold that President Hollande´s economic policies are on the wrong track. And 54% believe that high tax rates increase, rather than decrease, inequality. Under the socialists, of course, the government has swollen. By next year, France will surpass Denmark as the biggest government on Earth measured as a percentage of GDP (at 57%).
SAN DIEGO -- Nicknamed "Fat Leonard," the gregarious Malaysian businessman is well known by U.S. Navy commanders in the Pacific, where his company has serviced warships for 25 years. But prosecutors in court papers say Leonard Francis worked his connections to obtain military secrets by lining up hookers, Lady Gaga tickets and other bribes for a U.S. commander, in a scandal reverberating across the Navy. The accusations unfolding in a federal court case in San Diego signal serious national security breaches and corruption, setting off high-level meetings at the Pentagon with the threat that more people, including those of higher
In a recent conversation, a good buddy enraged by his new private insurance premiums and $5,800-per-year deductible said something that struck me as undoubtedly prophetic. "I´d literally need to be dying before I would start paying this ridiculous deductible for routine care." Under ObamaCare, those who work for a living incur massive premium and deductible increases to subsidize those that cannot or will not provide their own insurance. In the universe of ObamaCare, unless you are among the privileged dependency class that enjoys free health care, gone are the days when cautionary calls can be made to the doctor because a child
Whenever you have a media that is concerned more with indoctrination than with information, it falls to us humble truth-seekers to find the hidden truths for ourselves. Such is the case with this new revelation that Obama´s people had actually considered replacing Biden with Hillary on the ticket, right before the 2012 election. On the surface, this reads like scintillating political subterfuge. We are all supposed to gasp in shock and awe and wonder what might have been. In reality, it pokes a giant hole in the sharknado of conventional wisdom on Hillary´s presidential inevitability.
Mitt Romney said Sunday that Barack Obama lied about whether Americans could keep their health insurance under the Affordable Care Act — a “fundamental dishonesty” that is “rotting” the president’s second term. “When he told the American people that you could keep your health insurance if you wanted to keep that plan, period — he said that time and again — he wasn’t telling the truth,” the 2012 Republican presidential nominee said Sunday on NBC’s “Meet the Press.” “That fundamental dishonesty has really put in peril the foundation of his second term.” Mr. Romney has maintained a relatively low
Americans who face higher insurance costs under President Obama’s health-care law are angrily complaining about “sticker shock,” threatening to become a new political force opposing the law even as the White House struggles to convince other consumers that they will benefit from it. The growing backlash involves people whose plans are being discontinued because the policies don’t meet the law’s more-stringent standards. They’re finding that many alternative policies come with higher premiums and deductibles. After receiving a letter from her insurer that her plan was being discontinued,
These heartbreaking pictures show the squalid conditions that thousands of Roma children are forced to call home in the city of Kosice, Slovakia. The city, the largest in eastern Slovakia, received £51million when it was named the European Capital of Culture 2013 alongside Marseille, France. The money is to be invested into the city´s infrastructure, creative industries and tourism. However, in the suburb of Lunik IX around 8,000 Slovakian Roma, most of them children, live in squalor in one of the world´s worst slums. In many of the pictures, piles of rubbish can be see surrounding the blocks of flats where
President Barack Obama bragged to his aides that he´s ´really good at killing people,´ according to explosive claims in a new book about the 2012 presidential campaign. The revelation comes at a time when Obama, who won the Nobel Peace Prize in 2009, has faced increasing criticism for his use of drones to target insurgents and terrorist suspects, particularly in Pakistan and Yemen. The London-based Bureau of Investigative Journalism estimates that Obama has authorized 326 drone strikes. Since 2004, CIA unmanned aerial vehicles have killed 2,500 to 3,600 people--including up to
When Japanese-born Aki Yamaguchi was going through a rough period in her life, someone told her to focus on what made her happy. So she began taking pictures - photography had been a passion for years - of her dog, a border collie called Jazzy and posting them on her blog and Instagram account. ´She’s my best friend, my baby and my personal therapy dog. She is and will always be my number one heart-dog,´ says Aki. Jazzy, a former search-and-rescue dog, has been there for Yamaguchi every day, waiting for her with ´soft eyes and a big smile´ when
An explosion of violence in Iraq risks turning the troubled country into a political liability for President Obama. During last year´s reelection campaign, the president managed to both earn credit for withdrawing all U.S. troops and avoid blame for the deteriorating security situation. But a surge in terror attacks this year that has left more than 7,000 people dead has drawn bipartisan concerns about Obama´s Middle East policies -- concerns that broke out into the open during Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki´s visit to the White House this week. “By nearly every indicator, security conditions in Iraq have dramatically worsened over
Washington - A new book covering the 2012 presidential campaign uncovers a series of scathing remarks from political figures, but one alleged comment has stirred controversy around President Barack Obama and his administration’s use of targeted drone strikes. Mark Halperin and John Heilemann’s book “Double Down: Game Change 2012” notes President Obama commenting on drone strikes, reportedly telling his aides that he’s “really good at killing people.” The quote from the book was first reported in Peter Hamby’s review in the Washington Post.
About 1,500 modernist masterpieces – thought to have been looted by the Nazis – have been confiscated from the flat of an 80-year-old man from Munich, in what is being described as the biggest artistic find of the postwar era. The artworks, which could be worth as much as €1bn (£860m), are said to include pieces by Pablo Picasso, Henri Matisse, Marc Chagall, Paul Klee, Max Beckmann and Emil Nolde. They had been considered lost until now, according to a report in the German news weekly Focus. The works, which would originally have been confiscated as "degenerate art" by the Nazis or
Senior White House Advisor Dan Pfeiffer responded on Sunday to growing frustration with President Barack Obama’s inaccurate promise that individuals would be able to stay on their healthcare plans once his signature legislation was implemented. “If the president didn’t intend to keep this promise, why would he have gone out of his way to put a provision in the law specifically says that if you have a plan before Obamacare passed you can keep that plan?” Pfeiffer asked on ABC’s This Week. “It’s important to understand who we’re talking about and the kind of plans we’re talking about.