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In and outs of the political campaigns, focusing on Michigan and Lansing, Tim Skubick will report regularly throughout the primary and then general election campaigns.

Sunday, November 15, 2009


     A hunting we will go….come hell or high water.
     When it comes to tradition, if lawmakers were smart, they would leave it to the Fiddler on the Roof and not practice it themselves.
      For time in memoriam it's been the tradition in this town to take time off for hunting season and years ago, a hefty number of hearty souls in the house and senate actually went up North to hunt Bambi and her relatives.
      But that was then and now there is a school funding crisis, a stalemate on how to pay for education and a classic battle of government philosophies and last time anyone checked, there was no resolution…yet off to the woods they go.
      Get a load of this schedule, which of course is subject to change if public pressure were to materialize:  The house and senate are off this Monday and Tuesday and set to come back on Wednesday.  But word on the street is, there won't be any bills debated or voted on and so there is no good reason for anybody to show up.
      Then the senate is not due back until December first, second, and third and supposedly the house will be in as well.  And if conflict resolution is going to be "resoluted," it will likely be then because for the two weeks after that, the leaders report session days will be "tentative" which is code for "we don't want to come back, but if we absolutely have to, we will reluctantly hold session."
      What a great gig!
      You'll recall last summer, the full time Michigan legislature held a grand total of three sessions after July 4th.  The pace was down right…lethargic.  And here we go again.
       The lip service lawmakers pay to putting the public first is just that. If they were really serious about this economic and school crisis, they would chuck all the time off, let the dozen or so who want to hunt go and the rest should  stay in town to at least give the appearance they are concerned.
       It surely doesn't look like that is the case right now.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Tim, you've nailed on the first attempt. The schedule these elected officials keep is arrogant, ludicrious and an insult to the taxpayers who pay their salaries. Now is the time for the people to begin a petition drive for a referendum to create a unicameral part-time legislature. Where do I sign? Where do I get a petition to circulate for people to sign?

November 15, 2009 at 4:54 PM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Health insurance is a good example of why our politicans have gone astray.

Why are “we conservatives” not arguing that more free-market competition in the health insurance industry is what is needed? Lobbyist and special interest groups have bought off our representatives in Washington. There is no other logical answer.

A major argument of liberals for advocating a public sector health insurance plan is to increase competition and thus drive down cost by forcing the private sector to compete. Why are conservatives not fighting back, stating it is the private sector that can best provide more competition? Why are they not quoting Adam Smith when he talked about "rational self interest” and competitive markets in his book Wealth of Nations? He envisioned many consumers interested in buying goods and services from many producers. This “free market” system best serves the private and public good.

Why are they not quoting Justice Louis Brandeis when he said in 1928:

“Experience should teach us to be most on guard to protect liberty when the government’s purposes are beneficial. Men born to freedom are naturally alert to repel invasion of liberty by evil-minded rulers. The greater dangers to liberty lurk in insidious encroachment by men of zeal, well-meaning but without understanding.”

Private markets and free enterprise are at the core of what conservatives stand for. So why are they not selling it to the public during this nationwide debate about health insurance? What our representatives in Washington should be doing is fighting to make the private sector of the health insurance industry free from the oligopolistic powers of many companies in the business.

Instead, their votes are bought with heavy campaign contributions by these oligopolies. If the government were serious about creating more competition in the insurance industry, they would be spending time enforcing anti-trust laws and other regulations created to keep private markets free from monopolies and oligopolies instead of arguing over a “public option” to health care. This is shown by the following quote from By Halimah Abdullah of the McClatchy Newspapers:

“As the Obama administration and Democrats wrangled
over the timing, shape and cost of health care overhaul efforts during the first half of the year, more than half the $1.1 million in campaign contributions the Democratic Party's Blue Dog Coalition received came from the pharmaceutical, health care and health insurance industries, according to watchdog organizations.”

The Blue Dog Coalition is not alone. Sadly, it appears that before getting good
health care reform, we need campaign contribution reform.

The private sector of the health care industry should be set free by government
looking out for its’ citizens and enforcing anti trust laws. A free, competitive market will drive down the cost of health care. To paraphrase Ronald Reagan; “Trust, but verify.” Government has let the health care industry get out of hand. If government does its job of assuring free markets, free markets will drive down the cost of health care and the public will be "Free to Choose."

November 15, 2009 at 5:21 PM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

To bad the Deer season is not longer. that way they will do less damage to this state

November 18, 2009 at 5:48 PM 

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