Friday, January 28, 2011

Rand Paul's SOTU Address Makes More Sense

Senator Rand Paul from the US state of Kentucky presents a much briefer and more honest State of the Union Address than US President Obama is capable of giving.

The USA (and the world) will suffer for decades for its rash and idiocratic decision in November 2008, to hand over controls of the world's only superpower to a "Peter Principle Poster Child."

Parts of the US will suffer more -- paradoxically the parts of the US controlled by friends and allies of the current US President will suffer for having their dysfunctional policies promoted and enabled. States and cities under the control of Obama friends in the Public Sector unions are veering ever more closely toward bankruptcy -- already suffering reduced credit rating and higher bond costs.

The lesson to democracies is to take their responsiblity at the ballot box seriously next time. The Obama regime is a noxious stink bomb on the entire world. The human population of the world cannot survive many more like that.

Evans Wadongo Would Make a Much Better President

He [Evans Wadongo] has no time for Kenya's political class, accusing them of "wanting people to remain poor so that they can stay in power". _PO
Very like the US political class of the past 2 years.

If we were to choose between Kenyans for president of the US, perhaps it would be better to choose one who has demonstrated the ability to solve real world problems, and a genuine desire and competence to help people.
As a child growing up in west Kenya, Wadongo struggled to do his homework by kerosene lamp. He was caned at school if his family ran out of fuel for the lamp, and he permanently damaged his eyesight by sitting over the smoky fumes when they did have kerosene.

But his father, whom he describes as a teacher who was "very strict" and "my greatest inspiration", saw that he completed his studies and made it into university.

Once there, Wadongo started wondering how to improve conditions for children in communities similar to his home village -- and there are many. Though Kenya is one of the richest countries in east Africa, more than half the population lives on less than a dollar a day.

The young man had always wanted to help people but did not have the stomach to go into medicine, so he opted for engineering. He was only 19 when he invented his first solar lamp after using part of his student loan to buy what he needed.

"Then, I never thought it would take off on this scale. I just wanted to take one to my grandma," he recalled.

Some 15,000 lamps have been turned out since production started in 2004, and Wadongo says his goal is to hit 100,000 by 2015.

"I started in the village where I grew up and I saw kids going from primary into high school," he told AFP.

He has no time for Kenya's political class, accusing them of "wanting people to remain poor so that they can stay in power".

For Wadongo, the lamps are not an end in themselves, but rather "a way to lift people out of poverty." _PO
Clever problem solvers are far more in demand than clever con men and jive artists, such as many members of the US political class. Society should aim to produce far more actual problem solvers.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Academic Lobotomies On Parade . . . . .

Outside of science and engineering, US universities and colleges too often provide an inferior product. Liberal Arts curricula have fallen prey to political correctness and post-modern multicultural dogma to the point that large numbers of the best US liberal arts graduates are incapable of basic rational thought.
For most of the past 20 years I have served on selection committees for the Rhodes Scholarship. In general, the experience is an annual reminder of the tremendous promise of America's next generation. We interview the best graduates of U.S. universities for one of the most prestigious honors that can be bestowed on young scholars.

I have, however, become increasingly concerned in recent years - not about the talent of the applicants but about the education American universities are providing. Even from America's great liberal arts colleges, transcripts reflect an undergraduate specialization that would have been unthinkably narrow just a generation ago.

As a result, high-achieving students seem less able to grapple with issues that require them to think across disciplines or reflect on difficult questions about what matters and why.

Unlike many graduate fellowships, the Rhodes seeks leaders who will "fight the world's fight." They must be more than mere bookworms. We are looking for students who wonder, students who are reading widely, students of passion who are driven to make a difference in the lives of those around them and in the broader world through enlightened and effective leadership. The undergraduate education they are receiving seems less and less suited to that purpose.

An outstanding biochemistry major wants to be a doctor and supports the president's health-care bill but doesn't really know why. A student who started a chapter of Global Zero at his university hasn't really thought about whether a world in which great powers have divested themselves of nuclear weapons would be more stable or less so, or whether nuclear deterrence can ever be moral. A young service academy cadet who is likely to be serving in a war zone within the year believes there are things worth dying for but doesn't seem to have thought much about what is worth killing for. A student who wants to study comparative government doesn't seem to know much about the important features and limitations of America's Constitution.

When asked what are the important things for a leader to be able to do, one young applicant described some techniques and personal characteristics to manage a group and get a job done. Nowhere in her answer did she give any hint of understanding that leaders decide what job should be done. Leaders set agendas.

I wish I could say that this is a single, anomalous group of students, but the trend is unmistakable. Our great universities seem to have redefined what it means to be an exceptional student. They are producing top students who have given very little thought to matters beyond their impressive grasp of an intense area of study.

This narrowing has resulted in a curiously unprepared and superficial pre-professionalism _WaPo
Is this deficit of thinking skills due to lowered expectations among schools and college professors? Or are the professors themselves incapable of basic multi-POV thought?

Certainly the post-1960s university professoriate is more prone to the teaching of a sort of blurry quasi-leftist mono-POV drivel. Professors are less tolerant of students expressing contrary opinions these days. Rather than teaching students to think for themselves, professors too often try to mould the thinking of students into a press of their own making. A very sad trend, which leads to nothing good.

This massive loss of human capital due to academic lobotomisation is combined with a loss of human capital due to dysgenic differential birth rates. Well educated career women, who tend to be more intelligent, are more likely to have no children -- or one child at most, typically.

A society in the midst of massive human capital loss, is not a society on the rise. US universities are in the middle of a higher education bubble -- with vastly top-heavy and ruinously expensive staffing in the administrative area. Time for massive re-structuring and re-thinking of the university enterprise.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Unions, Failing Cities and States, Organised Extortion . . .

Unions have always been difficult to distinguish from organised crime. Violent extortion is violent extortion, no matter how you paint it. But over recent decades unions have found more subtle ways to choke the life out of taxpayers. It has taken a prolonged economic recession under a president who owes his political life to unions/organised malefactors/machine politicians for the tangled web to become more clear.

There are many reasons why so many of America's cities are dying, and why so many states are desperately seeking paths to bailout and bankruptcy protections. Thanks to public sector unions, the credit ratings of many US cities and states are approaching junk bond status, and soon they will reach the limits to borrowing unless the sugar daddy of American unions can wrangle a massive and unaffordable bailout for the states and cities from an increasingly hostile US Congress.

Here is a short list of just a few cities that are in trouble:
  • Grand Rapids, Michigan
  • Flint, Michigan
  • South Bend, Indiana
  • Detroit, Michigan
  • Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
  • Cleveland, Ohio
  • Rochester, New York
  • Hialeah, Florida
  • Vallejo, California
  • New Orleans, Louisiana
Their populations are fleeing, their tax base is shrinking, businesses are bailing out, and unions are doubling down on demands from their hand-picked political poodles.

Something has to give.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Small Modular Reactors Struggle Against Obama's Policy of Energy Starvation

A global race is under way to develop small-reactor designs, says Paul Genoa of the Nuclear Energy Institute, an industry body in Washington, DC. He estimates that more than 20 countries have expressed serious interest in buying mini-reactors.

At least eight different approaches are being developed, mainly in America and Asia, by an army of 3,000 nuclear engineers, according to Ron Moleschi of SNC-Lavalin Nuclear, an engineering firm based in Montreal. Regulatory and licensing procedures are lengthy, so little will be built until around 2017, he says. But after that the industry is expected to take off. The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) estimates that by 2030 at least 40 (and possibly more than 90) small reactors will be in operation. It reckons that more than half of the countries that will build nuclear plants in coming years will plump for these smaller, simpler designs. _Economist

Obama's Nuclear Regulatory Commission is dragging its feet on nuclear energy -- particularly on new safer, more economical reactor designs such as small modular reactors (SMRs). But Obama's agenda of energy starvation, and its job-killing, industry-killing effects are living on borrowed time. In the real world, all forms of currently suppressed energy -- including small modular nuclear reactors -- will find a way.

Upcoming conferences on Small Modular Reactors:

19-20 April 2011 Conference in Columbia, SC, on Small Modular Reactors:
The conference is expected to draw about 120 people from about 60 companies and agencies around the world, such as China National Nuclear Corp., the International Atomic Energy Agency and Iraq Energy Institute. Also, industry heavyweights like Westinghouse, AREVA and GE have signed up, along with the U.S. Department of Energy, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, the U.S. Army and utilities across the nation.

The conference, scheduled to be held April 19-20 at the Marriott Hotel on Main Street, is sponsored by SCE&G and organized by the Carolinas’ Nuclear Cluster and Nuclear Energy Insider _thestate

SMR Conference 23-24 May 2011 Washington, DC...._ Call for abstracts

Small modular reactors can be built more quickly, safely, and cheaply in a controlled factory environment. They can then be shipped to the site for a quick and inexpensive installation -- pre-loaded with fuel and ready to hook up.

The US Navy has been powering ships safely using small nuclear reactors for many decades. One of the most likely future suppliers of SMRs to the civilian market -- Babcock and Wilcox -- just received a new $2 billion award for Naval Nuclear Reactor Components.

But then, the US military has to actually accomplish something -- unlike the civil portion of the US government which generally does no more than consume scarce resources which would be put to better use elsewhere.

Short Primer on Liquid Fuel Nuclear Reactors

Taken from an Al Fin article adapted from an earlier article at Al Fin Energy

Friday, January 21, 2011

In Obamaworld, We Never Have to Leave School, and Other Happy Tales

Although college may be a total waste of time, once you catch on that it's the journey that counts -- not the destination -- you can relax and just let it happen.

One of the things that may be ready to happen, is a significant US stock market correction -- meaning a drop........splat! Some high powered market researchers think the market is near a significant top. Of course, we all understand that the market is not the same thing as the economy. But when you combine a stagnant or flagging market with a worsening home market and a stealth worsening of the job market, and it starts to look like staying in college until the age of 85 might be the best idea of all. Make sure mom and dad leave plenty of money in the college trust.

More wonderful Obamarama news: If your state or municipality is controlled by public sector unions, it's probably going bankrupt as you read this. Good luck to the US Democrat party trying to keep that information from the voters.
Working-class families are fleeing the Democratic Party en masse, a trend that is likely to continue if their own economic situation remains weak in the face of ever-higher taxes, deficits and debt. These working-class voters see that public employees are continuing to receive more generous benefits and enjoy greater job security than they are. Support for the Democratic Party is now well below 40% with working-class voters who are unionized, and as low as 33% with whites who are not college educated.

As if that were not enough, Peter Orszag says that Americans need to "brace themselves for turbulence." You may remember that Peter was recently Budget Director of the Obama Regime. He got out when he could. What about you?

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Palin to Ruling Class: Don't Bring a Chihuahua to a Grizzly Fight


The ruling classes in both the US Democrat and US Republican parties want Sarah Palin to just go away -- disappear! The threadworn media and ruling punditry are pulling out all the stops to make Palin seem like a "has-been," yesterday's news. At least one thing is wrong with that approach -- It won't work.
The appeal of Palin is illuminated by many of the images/perceptions of both her and President Obama. Palin the badass hunts, fishes, climbs mountains, shoots caribou, rides in small planes often; the Democrats are represented by Obama, a man who flinches while watching a judo exhibition and wears a safety helmet for a leisurely bike ride. Fair or not, this perception exists. Palin is Theodore Roosevelt in a size 6 suit, American flag pin, and some kick ass black leather boots, Obama is an academic who looks uncomfortable in jeans, throws like a girl, and can’t name his alleged baseball heroes from childhood. _BigJournalism

She is...a highly accomplished woman, what in an earlier age would have been called a feminist pioneer: the first female governor of the malest state in the country, the first woman on the presidential ticket of the party on the male side of the "gender gap." Having left politics, whether temporarily or permanently, she has established herself as one of the most consequential voices in the political media.

They say she is uneducated. What they mean is that her education is not elite--not Harvard or Yale, or even Michigan or UCLA. They resent her because, in their view, she has risen above her station. _WallStreetJournal
But because she has risen above her station to confront far more powerful ruling interessts, she is becoming a hero to the common person. You know the common person -- the one who is never polled about his presidential preferences?
The popular hatred of a self-described elite culture toward Sarah Palin is almost inexplicable — whether expressed in Andrew Sullivan’s unhinged efforts to suggest Palin faked her fifth pregnancy, or David Letterman’s slur that she seemed a “slutty flight attendant” and her 14-year-old daughter “was knocked up by Alex Rodriguez,” or CNN guest host Kathy Griffin’s crudity that her next target was the teenaged Palin daughter: “But I think it’s Willow’s year to go down.” _VDH
The common people who live in flyover country observe how the ruling classes treat Sarah, whom they consider one of their own. They watch and they remember.
Said Palin: "It isn't about me personally, but it is about the message. I know that a lot on the left hate my message, and they will do all that they can to stop me because they don't like the message. They'll do what they can to destroy the message and the messenger."

Said added: "I am not ready to make an announcement about what my political future is going to be. But I will tell you ... I am not going to sit down. I am not going to shut up." _PoliticalWire
I tend to believe her when she says things like that.

The ruling classes in the US have generated a convincing mirage of invincibility. It requires every hack journalist, quasi-writer, media producer, and pseudo-intellectual that your tax dollars can buy, under the direction of the puppetmasters of public opinion. But just how well can that mirage stand up against a true popular revolt? We may find out.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

No Way Like the Obama Way! 10 More Years of Depression?

Obama's wholesale assault against the US private sector promises to produce decades-long historically high unemployment and skyrocketing debts at all levels of government. The Obama regime's job-killing, industry-killing agenda of energy starvation is particularly hard on employment, when combined with an overall attitude of private wealth destruction flowing out of DC.
The conventional wisdom among economists is that the economy will be forced to go through a long adjustment process before it can get back to more normal rates of unemployment. The optimists put the return to normal at 2015, while the pessimists would put the year as 2018, and possibly, even later.

Furthermore, many economists believe that the new normal will be worse than the old normal. The unemployment rate bottomed out at 4.5% before the housing bubble began to burst. If we go back to 2000, the United States had a year-round average unemployment rate of just 4.0%. The optimists now envision that normal would be 5.0% unemployment, while the pessimists put the new normal at 6.0% unemployment and perhaps higher. As a point of reference, every percentage point rise in the unemployment corresponds to more than 2 million additional people without jobs.

The willingness of economists to so quickly embrace this darker future is striking. _ImpactLab
The reality is that the US economy is on a collision course with the exponential increase in government debt, combined with increased suffocating government regulations, mandates, taxes, penalties, fines, licenses . . .

The very idea of a "return to normal" under these rapidly worsening conditions -- particularly when combined with Obama's anti-energy, anti-industry stance -- is profoundly delusional.

Here are more details on what happens when Obama's "green energy" scheme is put in place (in the UK):
Britain’s world lead in wind development is primarily because of two major natural advantages: Britain has the windiest conditions in Europe along with the longest continuous coastline. In short, if wind power can’t work in Britain it cannot work anywhere else. But fail it did yet again this winter. Indeed, as it has for most of the last 12 winters.

Figures released in early January showed that as temperatures plunged to well below freezing and electric power demand soared, electricity production at Britain’s 3,100+ wind turbines fell from an average of 8.6 percent of Britain’s electricity mix to just 1.8 percent. Instead of serving up to 3 million homes, wind farms were serving just 30,000 homes, a mere one-hundredth of normal capacity. On the evening of December 20 Britain’s average temperature fell to minus 5.6 celsius. At 6.30 that evening, the nation’s wind farms, which claim a generating capacity of 5.2 GW of electricity, were actually generating a piffling 40 MW, the equivalent of 20 turbines working at full capacity.

As Jeremy Nicholson, director of the UK Energy Intensive Users Group, states, “What is worrying is that these sorts of figures are not a one-off. It was exactly the same last January and February when high pressure brought freezing cold temperatures, snow and no wind.” Nicholson added, “We can cope at the moment because there is still not that much power generated by wind. But all this will change. What happens when we are dependent on wind turbines for 30 percent of our power and there is suddenly a period when the wind does not blow and there is high demand?”

When British wind farms were reportedly producing “practically no electricity” over a similar period in 2010 the British Government was forced to ask 95 major industrial consumers to turn off their gas pipelines. Nobody knows how much that cost the country. Back then, Nicholson stated, “If we had this 30 GW of wind power [the government’s stated goal for 2030] it wouldn’t have contributed anything of significance this winter.”

After this month’s repeat of the wind power-out, Nicholson observed that while the government was well aware of the problem, there was a need for a massive back-up infrastructure. “But it will cost billions to put these measures in place,” explains Nicholson, “and we will have to pick up the tab”. Yet another cost that advocates fail to factor in. _EnergyTribune
In other words, under the Obama green scheme people will not only be impoverished and unemployed, but they will also be freezing cold and in the dark, without power.

Well, at least Americans can take comfort in the fact that they are responsible for their own demise.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Municipal Bond Market In Trouble

The municipal-bond market's assumption is that cities and states won't default on their debt because they need to keep selling bonds to build roads and bridges. Investors will keep buying munis because they think the state will always make good on its obligations (and with the added incentive that these bonds are free of state, local and federal taxes).

But suppose taxes are so high that people leave cities or states in droves, depleting the pool of revenue need to pay bondholders? Suppose these states have so many other obligations -- from federal mandates, massive "guaranteed" pensions to government workers and more -- that they can't or won't make the vast cuts needed to keep paying on their bonds?

...Prominent banking analyst Meredith Whitney (who accurately predicted the banking crisis in late 2007) recently warned that 50 to 100 municipal-bond defaults will happen over the next year, likely amounting to more than $100 billion in defaulted debt. _NYP
Maybe so, maybe not. Obama will want to bail out municipalities which are particularly tight with public sector unions, at the very least. But then, with the US government under Obama losing its international credit reputation, the US government may not be in a position to bail out anyone soon.

The ways of profligate big government spenders is the way of ruin, sooner or later. Perhaps sooner would be better, so we could take out the garbage and get busy re-building in a smarter way.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Melanie Phillips on Israeli Television

Interesting interview with the author of "Londonistan", on Israeli public TV. One expects for Ms. Phillips' point of view to be reviled in the UK and Europe. But when she is looked at askance even in Israel, one has to wonder how long the Jewish state can continue to exist.

Survival is not a bloodless sport. Survival of a nation is particularly bloody, and has never been otherwise. Either a nation's people believes in their right to exist or they do not.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

An Articulate and Sensitive Look at the Tucson Tragedy

Sarah Palin: "America's Enduring Strength" from Sarah Palin on Vimeo.

Governor Palin expresses the majority view of Americans of all political persuasions in a brief, sensitive, and incisive video address.

This has not been the finest hour for America's journalists, many of whom made total fools and ghouls of themselves by trying to take advantage of several tragic deaths and woundings in Tucson to score political points against their opponents.

These pundits, politicians, and journos must be made to pay a grievous price for their egregious abuse of position and influence. The people are watching, and they are remembering.

Friday, January 07, 2011

Public Sector Unions Coming Under the Microscope

The millions spent by public-employee unions on ballot measures in states like California and Oregon, for instance, almost always support the options that would lead to higher taxes and more government spending. The California Teachers Association, for example, spent $57 million in 2005 to defeat referenda that would have reduced union power and checked government growth. And the political influence of such massive spending is of course only amplified by the get-out-the-vote efforts of the unions and their members. This power of government-workers' unions to increase (and then sustain) levels of employment through the political process helps explain why, for instance, the city of Buffalo, New York, had the same number of public workers in 2006 as it did in 1950 — despite having lost half of its population (and thus a significant amount of the demand for public services). _NatlAffairs
The catastrophic excesses of public sector unions, and the dire consequences to the underlying government budgets and civilian economy, have begun to make the news more often recently. Shining a light on the abuse is worthwhile, even if it is too late to save many local, provincial, and national governments from economic disaster.

A look at the US problem with public sector unions:
When it comes to advancing their interests, public-sector unions have significant advantages over traditional unions. For one thing, using the political process, they can exert far greater influence over their members' employers — that is, government — than private-sector unions can. Through their extensive political activity, these government-workers' unions help elect the very politicians who will act as "management" in their contract negotiations — in effect handpicking those who will sit across the bargaining table from them, in a way that workers in a private corporation (like, say, American Airlines or the Washington Post Company) cannot. Such power led Victor Gotbaum, the leader of District Council 37 of the AFSCME in New York City, to brag in 1975: "We have the ability, in a sense, to elect our own boss."

Since public-sector unions began to develop in earnest, their importance in political campaigns has grown by leaps and bounds. Starting from almost nothing in the 1960s, government-workers' unions now far exceed private-sector unions in political contributions. According to the Center for Responsive Politics, from 1989 to 2004, the AFSCME was the biggest spender in America, giving nearly $40 million to candidates in federal elections (98.5% of it to Democrats). It is important to stress that this was spending on federal elections; the union represents mostly state and local workers. But given the magnitude of federal contributions to state budgets, the AFSCME is heavily involved in electioneering to shape Washington's spending in ways that protect public workers and the supply of government services. And so over that 15-year period, the AFSCME was willing and able to outspend any other organization in the country.

The political influence of public-sector unions is probably greatest, however, in low-turnout elections to school boards and state and local offices, and in votes to decide ballot initiatives and referenda. For example, two of the top five biggest spenders in Wisconsin's 2003 and 2004 state elections were the Wisconsin Education Association Council and the AFSCME-affiliated Wisconsin PEOPLE Conference. Only the state Republican Party and two other political action committees — those belonging to the National Association of Realtors and SBC / Ameritech — spent more. The same is true in state after state, as unions work to exert control over the very governments that employs their members.

...The very nature of many public services — such as policing the streets and putting out fires — gives government a monopoly or near monopoly; striking public employees could therefore hold the public hostage. As long-time New York Times labor reporter A. H. Raskin wrote in 1968: "The community cannot tolerate the notion that it is defenseless at the hands of organized workers to whom it has entrusted responsibility for essential services."

Another common objection to collective bargaining with public-employee unions was that it would mean taking some of the decision-making authority over government functions away from the people's elected representatives and transferring it to union officials, with whom the public had vested no such authority. In this view, democracy would be compromised when elected officials began sharing with union leaders the power to determine government employees' wages, benefits, and working conditions. Furthermore, collectively bargained work rules could alter what public servants did day to day in ways not condoned by either elected officials or the voting public.

...When all jobs are considered, state and local public-sector workers today earn, on average, $14 more per hour in total compensation (wages and benefits) than their private-sector counterparts. The New York Times has reported that public-sector wages and benefits over the past decade have grown twice as fast as those in the private sector. These aggregate pay differentials stem partly from the fact that government work tends to be more white-collar, and that public employees tend to be better educated and more experienced, and to live in urban areas. Another factor is the hollowing out of the middle of the income distribution in the private sector. But union influence still plays a major role.

... In California, for example, state workers often retire at 55 years of age with pensions that exceed what they were paid during most of their working years. In New York City, firefighters and police officers may retire after 20 years of service at half pay — which means that, at a time when life expectancy is nearly 80 years, New York City is paying benefits to 10,000 retired cops who are less than 50 years old. Those benefits quickly add up: In 2006, the annual pension benefit for a new retiree averaged just under $73,000 (and the full amount is exempt from state and local taxes).

How, one might ask, were policymakers ever convinced to agree to such generous terms? As it turns out, many lawmakers found that increasing pensions was very good politics. They placated unions with future pension commitments, and then turned around, borrowed the money appropriated for the pensions, and spent it paying for public services in the here and now. Politicians liked this scheme because they could satisfy the unions, provide generous public services without raising taxes to pay for them, and even sometimes get around balanced-budget requirements. _NatlAffairs
Only bald, in-your-face threats of violence and mayhem can sustain public sector unions once the pubic catches on to their scams. But eventually, economic forces will win out, and this "holiday from economic reality" being enjoyed by both the public unions and their governmental enablers, will come to an abrupt and unhappy end. But hopefully not a violent end.

The only way to assure that violence is kept to a minimum as economic sanity is restored to the scorched-earth world of public sector unions, is to be sure the people themselves can do far worse to the unions and their allies, than the unions can do to the public.

Not All Canadians Are Willing to Wait Years for Routine Surgery

Watch the video for a preview of what to expect in the US under Obamacare. Eternal waits, health care rationing, and some treatments forever out of reach to government health care recipients.
Canada has universal health care, but long wait times for treatment, the perception of poor medical service--whether real or imagined--and medical advances that "are allowing people to survive from things that once killed them," is driving demand for private health coverage and plans that offer second opinions...Canadians who want a second-opinion diagnosis and top-quality treatment fast can now look to Elite U.S. Healthcare, a product developed in collaboration with the Cleveland Clinic.

"It provides people with choice and some security and peace of mind at a time when they're at their most vulnerable and want things done as quickly as possible," said Mark Halpern, a certified financial planner and president of Toronto-based Inc., who developed the product with the clinic. _WSJ
Unfortunately, under Obamacare, the only "elite" US healthcare remaining will be what is offered to politicians, US government bureaucrats, and public sector union members. Everyone else will get government healthcare, otherwise known as the lowest common denominator.

Say good-bye to world-class biomedical and pharmaceutical research, products, and technologies. Say hello to mediocrity and worse. Unless you can travel to Costa Rica to escape Obamacare.