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Keyword: boondoggle

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  • Pentagon’s big budget F-35 fighter ‘can’t turn, can’t climb, can’t run’

    07/15/2014 9:06:15 PM PDT · by Rabin · 28 replies
    Reuters ^ | July 14, 2014 | David Axe
    The U.S. military has grounded all its new F-35 Joint Strike Fighters following an incident on June 23, when one of the high-tech warplanes caught fire on the runway of a Florida air base. The no-fly order — which affects at least 50 F-35s at training and test bases in Florida, Arizona, California and Maryland. F-35 is on track to become by far the military’s most numerous warplane. It was designed to replace almost all current fighters in the Air Force and Marine Corps and complement the Navy’s existing F/A-18s.
  • Social Security Disability: What Happens When It Runs Out of Money?

    07/17/2014 3:05:46 PM PDT · by TurboZamboni · 39 replies
    motley fool ^ | 7-6-14 | Dan Caplinger
    Social Security helps not only retirees but also roughly 9 million of people suffering from disabilities. Unfortunately, the trust fund that covers disability payments is in even worse financial condition than the trust fund that covers retirement benefits. What will happen when the disability program's trust fund runs out? In the following video, Dan Caplinger, The Motley Fool's director of investment planning, talks about the two Social Security trust funds, noting that the latest estimates give the retirement trust fund about 20 more years before it runs out of money, but the disability trust fund is slated to be used...
  • Who'll Build the Roads?

    07/16/2014 4:14:50 AM PDT · by Kaslin · 21 replies
    Townhall.com ^ | July 16, 2014 | John Stossel
    "Tea party members don't think there's a federal role in transportation!" complained Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, last week, near the site of a $5.8 million highway project. If only most tea party members were that radical. While Brown and other big-government folks worry that Republicans will cut spending, Republicans debate adding another $10.5 billion to the Highway Trust Fund to keep it going another year -- without deciding how to reform it. Now, there's no doubt some roads and bridges need work. But too little transportation money spent by government goes to building and repairing roads. As Cato Institute transportation...
  • Pentagon’s big budget F-35 fighter ‘can’t turn, can’t climb, can’t run’

    07/15/2014 12:38:36 PM PDT · by Rodamala · 53 replies
    Reuters ^ | July 14, 2014 | David Axe
    Americans should be worried. The U.S. military has grounded all its new F-35 Joint Strike Fighters following an incident on June 23, when one of the high-tech warplanes caught fire on the runway of a Florida air base. The no-fly order — which affects at least 50 F-35s at training and test bases in Florida, Arizona, California and Maryland — began on the evening of July 3 and continued through July 11. To be fair, the Pentagon routinely grounds warplanes on a temporary basis following accidents and malfunctions to buy investigators time to identify problems and to give engineers time...
  • MNsure Monthly Premiums Likely to Increase Significantly

    07/10/2014 7:22:08 AM PDT · by TurboZamboni · 5 replies
    KSTP ^ | 7-9-14 | Jay Kolls
    The head of the Minnesota Council of Health Plans gave a hint of what might come soon to those who pay for health insurance coverage through MNsure, Minnesota's health care exchange. Julie Brunner is the Executive Director of the Minnesota Council of Health Plans, which is the professional association for the HMOs that offer health coverage through MNsure. Brunner recently told a University of Minnesota symposium that she would "not be surprised if the health plans increased their rates by 8, 10, or even 12 percent." Gov. Mark Dayton tells 5 EYEWITNESS NEWS he would be disappointed by such a...
  • Green Line opens soon, and St. Paul has a lot riding on this train

    06/08/2014 5:41:42 AM PDT · by TurboZamboni · 21 replies
    Pioneer Press ^ | 6-8-14 | Fred Melo
    Officials at all levels of government are banking that Metro Transit's $957 million investment will do more than simply shuttle existing bus riders in fancier vehicles between the downtowns of St. Paul and Minneapolis when it debuts June 14. They are counting on light rail to be a catalyst -- an economic game-changer for downtown St. Paul and much of University Avenue. Both areas have lost industry since the 1970s. The city as a whole lost 13.4 percent of its employment from 2000 to 2011, a period during which the U.S. shed 2.2 percent of its jobs, according to Wilder...
  • U.S. to Provide Lawyers for Children Facing Deportation

    06/06/2014 2:11:29 PM PDT · by reaganaut1 · 22 replies
    New York Times ^ | June 6, 2014 | Kirk Semple
    The Obama administration said on Friday that it was launching a program to help recruit lawyers for children facing deportation as it scrambles to deal with the soaring number of unaccompanied Central American minors illegally crossing the border from Mexico. Under the plan, the federal government will issue $2 million in grants to enroll about 100 lawyers and paralegals to represent children making their way through the immigration court system. “We’re taking a historic step to strengthen our justice system and protect the rights of the most vulnerable members of society,” Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. said in a...
  • After 43 years, St. Paul's Union Depot marks return of passenger trains

    05/09/2014 4:59:55 AM PDT · by TurboZamboni · 25 replies
    Pioneer Press ^ | Fred Melo
    Passenger trains are again rolling into St. Paul's historic Union Depot. Ramsey County leaders joined their peers from St. Paul and the state Wednesday to welcome Amtrak to their meticulously restored depot. The first train, the westbound Empire Builder from Chicago, arrived at 11:13 p.m. -- 70 minutes late -- en route to Seattle and Portland, Ore. "Our beautifully restored building is achieving our vision as a multimodal transit facility and a unique gathering place for people," said Ramsey County Commissioner Rafael Ortega, chair of the Ramsey County Regional Railroad Authority, said during ceremonies earlier in the day. But don't...
  • Report: Pentagon Paid $150 Per Gallon for Green Jet Fuel

    05/07/2014 6:34:09 PM PDT · by Kaslin · 40 replies
    The Washinton Free Beacon ^ | May 7, 2014 | Lachlan Markay
    The Department of Defense (DOD) paid $150 per gallon for alternative jet fuel made from algae, more than 64 times the current market price for standard carbon-based fuels, according to a report released on Wednesday. The Government Accountability Office (GAO) noted in its report that a Pentagon official reported paying “about $150 per gallon for 1,500 gallons of alternative jet fuel derived from algal oil.” GAO’s report examined the financial challenges facing increased purchases and use of alternative jet fuels by federal agencies. “Currently, the price for alternative jet fuels exceeds that of conventional jet fuel,” the report noted. The...
  • De Blasio Announces Affordable Housing Plan [The $41 Billion Program Will Create....]

    05/05/2014 8:50:03 AM PDT · by Sub-Driver · 37 replies
    De Blasio Announces Affordable Housing Plan The $41 Billion Program Will Create Units for More Than 500,000 New Yorkers By WSJ Staff Updated May 5, 2014 10:46 a.m. ET Mayor Bill de Blasio detailed a wide-ranging plan to build 200,000 new affordable housing units in New York City in 10 years, calling it a "fundamental plan to reduce income inequality." Those who benefit from the plan "won't be living doubled up with friends…they won't be living in homeless shelters," Mr. de Blasio said at a news conference in Brooklyn's Fort Greene neighborhood. The plan would provide housing to service more...
  • New US Navy Destroyer Zumwalt Christened in Maine

    04/13/2014 8:31:03 PM PDT · by BenLurkin · 57 replies
    abc | April 12, 2014 | ALANNA DURKIN
    The U.S. Navy on Saturday christened the first ship of its newest class of destroyers, a more than $3 billion, 610-foot-long warship sporting advanced technology and a stealthy shape designed to minimize its visibility on enemy radar and reduce the size of its crew. ... Among the 15,000-ton warship's cutting-edge features are a composite deckhouse with hidden radar and sensors and an angular shape that officials say will allow it to be confused for a small fishing boat on radars. It also sports wave-piercing hull designed to reduce the ship's wake. It's the first U.S. ship to use electric propulsion...
  • There is No Renaissance in Public Transit Use

    04/09/2014 6:39:06 PM PDT · by TurboZamboni · 21 replies
    MinnPost ^ | 4-9-14 | Katherine Kersten
    Are we seeing a renaissance in public transit use by Americans? The answer is yes, if you believe a new report from the American Public Transportation Association (APTA), the transit industry's lobby group. In fact, APTA's report is a textbook example of how deceiving statistics can be. The report states that in 2013, the number of transit trips was nearly 10.7 billion nationally--the highest since 1956, according to APTA. Michael Melaniphy, APTA's CEO, hailed what he called "a fundamental shift" in how Americans choose to get around. But even strong supporters of public transit like Michael Manville, David King and...
  • New building shows what legislators truly value: Themselves

    04/09/2014 4:44:45 AM PDT · by TurboZamboni · 8 replies
    Pioneer Press ^ | 4-9-14 | Joe Soucheray
    DFLers, who generally frown on grandeur as part of their ideology, are going to build themselves a marvelous new office building. They have been deaf to the idea that it is wasteful and that there are countless ways to accommodate the few of them who are going to be displaced by renovation work on the Capitol. To save a few bucks -- cutting it from $94 million to $77 million -- they claim they are going to eliminate an adjoining parking ramp. But that was to have been principally for the public anyway, and the public has been ignored in...
  • Senate Finance Committee votes to restore Wind Tax Credit

    04/03/2014 2:55:56 PM PDT · by Izzy Dunne · 20 replies
    The Hill ^ | Apr. 3, 2014 | Timothy Cama
    The Senate Finance Committee approved Thursday a package of tax break extensions that restores the production tax credit (PTC) for wind energy, which expired in 2013.The committee voted by voice vote to send the bill to the full Senate. It would extend the PTC for two years, along with numerous provisions that incentivize alternative fuels and energy efficiency for vehicles and homes. Senators who support the wind industry thanked Chairman Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) and ranking member Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) for including the wind credit in the bill that the committee marked up Thursday after excluding it from the draft...
  • California: By the way, that bullet train isn’t actually going to be as fast as we said it would be

    03/28/2014 9:18:01 PM PDT · by george76 · 61 replies
    Hot Air ^ | March 28, 2014 | Erika Johnsen
    When California first put the issue of building a high-speed bullet train between Los Angeles and San Francisco before voters, Gov. Jerry Brown made all sorts of nifty-sounding promises about how efficient, convenient, and fiscally sound a choice the rail line would be for Californians. All of those promises have more or less turned out to be a sham by now, as the train’s costs have exploded and its deadlines pushed way back, and now it appears that that less-than-three-hour ride Californians were originally promised… well, probably isn’t. ... who really considers a mounting “wall of debt” and a slew...
  • Veterans Affairs wind turbine, built for $2.3 million, stands dormant

    03/20/2014 6:40:02 AM PDT · by woodbutcher1963 · 22 replies
    Fox News ^ | March 20, 2014 | Tom Steward
    <p>ST. CLOUD, Minn. – A $2.3 million federal stimulus project at the Veterans Affairs Medical Center in St. Cloud is giving green energy initiatives a bad name. A 600-kilowatt wind turbine -- some 245 foot tall -- stands on the wintry VA grounds, frozen in time and temperature, essentially inoperable for the past 1 1/2 years.</p>
  • Airplane pilots hit by ‘nearly blinding’ glare from massive Calif. solar facility

    03/19/2014 11:09:27 AM PDT · by Red Badger · 24 replies
    Daily Caller ^ | 7:23 PM 03/18/2014 | Michael Bastasch
    Airplane pilots cruising over southern California have been complaining about a “nearly blinding” glare emanating from a massive government-funded solar thermal facility. The Ivanpah solar energy plant in San Bernardino County is the world’s largest solar thermal plant and has 173,500 large mirrors that reflect sunlight onto boilers in three 459-foot towers. A feat of modern engineering — to green energy advocates, but a flying hazard to pilots. The Federal Aviation Administration’s Aviation Safety Reporting System (ASRS) got two anonymous complaints in August that mentioned a “blinding glare” coming from the Ivanpah solar facility. One complaint came from a Los...
  • Feds open investigation of Md. ObamaCare site

    03/10/2014 1:15:17 PM PDT · by rightwingintelligentsia · 12 replies
    The Hill ^ | March 10, 2014 | Jonathan Easley
    The Health and Human Services inspector general (IG) will launch an investigation into the failed ObamaCare exchange in Maryland, Rep. Andy Harris (R-Md.) announced Monday. “Maryland officials ignored early warning signs and chose to waste and abuse federal taxpayer money by opening up what they knew was a flawed exchange to the public,” he wrote in a statement. “I have confidence that the nonpartisan and independent HHS Inspector General will thoroughly investigate and bring to light how hundreds of millions of dollars were wasted on one of the worst exchange roll outs in the country,” he added. An official with...
  • Report: DC’s green-approved buildings using more energy

    03/04/2014 12:18:49 PM PST · by TurboZamboni · 14 replies
    daily caller ^ | 3-4-14 | Sarah Hurtubise
    Washington, D.C. may have the highest number of certified green buildings in the country, but research by Environmental Policy Alliance suggests it might not be doing much good.The free-market group analyzed the first round of energy usage data released by city officials Friday and found that large, privately-owned buildings that received the green energy certification Leadership in Energy Design (LEED) actually use more energy than buildings that didn’t receive this green stamp of approval.LEED is the brainchild of the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC), a private environmental group.
  • Obama to pitch $1B climate change 'resilience fund' in Fresno, CA

    02/14/2014 10:15:14 AM PST · by Sub-Driver · 91 replies
    February 14, 2014, 06:39 am Obama to pitch $1B climate change 'resilience fund' By Laura Barron-Lopez President Obama will pitch a new $1 billion climate change resilience fund during a visit Friday to California. The fund, which would need to be approved by Congress, is intended to help communities dealing with negative weather that's the result of climate change. Obama is touting the fund during a trip to California, which has been devastated by a drought that is threatening the Central Valley's agriculture production and has led Gov. Jerry Brown (D) to call on Californians to conserve water. During a...
  • Dems' new 2014 plan: Neutralize Obamacare (They Want a Fight to a Draw)

    02/17/2014 5:03:35 AM PST · by Timber Rattler · 11 replies
    Politico ^ | February 17, 2014 | JAMES HOHMANN
    Democrats know their biggest problem in this year’s midterm election is Obamacare. So top party operatives have settled on a strategy to try blunting the GOP’s advantage: Tell voters Republicans would make the problem worse — raising prescription drug prices, empowering insurance companies and even endangering domestic violence victims. The battle plan, details of which were in a memo obtained by POLITICO, recognizes the unpopularity of the Affordable Care Act. But it also banks on voter fatigue with the GOP’s relentless demands for repeal and counts on poll-backed data that show many Americans would rather fix Obamacare’s problems than scrap...
  • World's largest solar plant scorching birds in Nevada desert

    02/16/2014 2:30:44 AM PST · by Fzob · 25 replies
    Fox News ^ | 02/15/2014 | Fox News
    A stretch of the Mojave Desert has been transformed by hundreds of thousands of mirrors into the largest solar power plant of its type in the world, but the milestone is being met with criticism from environmental groups concerned about the effect of solar energy on desert wildlife. The Ivanpah Solar Electric Generating System, sprawling across roughly 5 square miles of federal land near the California-Nevada border, formally opened Thursday after years of regulatory and legal tangles ranging from relocating tortoises to assessing the impact on plants. The $2.2 billion complex of three generating units, owned by NRG Energy Inc.,...
  • Obama to propose billion-dollar Climate Resilience Fund; Icy blast heats up coal debate

    02/14/2014 11:12:44 AM PST · by Olog-hai · 15 replies
    Politico ^ | 02/14/14 10:08 AM EDT | Alex Guillen
    President Barack Obama will ask Congress to set up a $1 billion “Climate Resilience Fund” in his proposed budget next month. Obama travels to Fresno, Calif., today to discuss the drought plaguing most of California and the Western U.S. and to announce new administration actions, including the proposed billion-dollar fund. According to the White House, the fund would go to research on the projected impacts of climate change, help communities prepare for climate change’s effects and fund “breakthrough technologies and resilient infrastructure.” […] As another snowstorm socks the East Coast, the coal industry has a message for the nation’s electricity...
  • A Huge Solar Plant Opens, Facing Doubts About Its Future

    02/14/2014 8:11:25 AM PST · by lbryce · 56 replies
    New York Times ^ | February 13, 2014 | DIANE CARDWELL and MATTHEW L. WALD
    The Ivanpah solar power plant stretches over more than five square miles of the Mojave Desert. Almost 350,000 mirrors the size of garage doors tilt toward the sun with an ability to energize 140,000 homes. The plant, which took almost four years and thousands of workers assembling millions of parts to complete, officially opened on Thursday, the first electric generator of its kind. It could also be the last. Since the project began, the price of rival technologies has plummeted, incentives have begun to disappear and the appetite among investors for mammoth solar farms has waned. Although several large, new...
  • This high-speed rail thing is kinda’ becoming a disaster for Jerry Brown

    01/13/2014 8:46:11 PM PST · by dennisw · 43 replies
    hotair ^ | JANUARY 7, 2014 | BY ERIKA JOHNSEN
    California’s ludicrously ambitious plan to build a high-speed railway connecting Los Angeles and San Francisco has been besieged with all kinds of problems from almost the moment of its official conception, but let that not restrain California Democrats from doubling down on what they seem to view as their iliadic quest to make high-speed rail happen. Back in August, a judge declared that the project had already violated the 2008 ballot initiative that first authorized the $10 billion in bonds for the 500-mile train, because the state didn't actually having funding sources on the books for the $31 billion required...
  • Other voices: Let the wind subsidy blow away

    01/08/2014 5:58:03 PM PST · by TurboZamboni · 11 replies
    Pioneer Press/Chicago Trib ^ | 1-8-14 | Editors
    In the early 1990s, with dreams of cheap and clean wind energy ascendant, Congress lavished a generous subsidy on power from the tall, twirling turbines. The wind industry responded, and since then has increased its installed generating capacity 30-fold. For 20-plus years the subsidy has been intermittent, although not as unreliable as the winds that drive the turbines. The most recent authorization, a 2013 extension tucked into the federal budget deal that avoided the so-called fiscal cliff, expired Dec. 31. Applause, please, for our do-little Congress: What's known as the wind production tax credit has long outlived any public policy...
  • Minnesota solar subsidy revised

    11/25/2013 10:59:18 AM PST · by TurboZamboni · 18 replies
    MPLS Star & Sickle ^ | 11-22-13 | DAVID SHAFFER
    Minnesota’s expanded $15 million-a-year program to support homegrown solar panel manu­fac­turing will of­fer output-based in­cen­tives for the first time, ac­cord­ing to de­tails re­leased Fri­day. The program, fund­ed by ratepayers of the state’s four investor-owned utilities, will pay homeowners, businesses, nonprofits and governments from 13 cents per kilowatt-hour to 27 cents per kilowatt-hour over 10 years of output from solar arrays built by either of the state’s two panel makers. The retail electricity rate in Minnesota is about 10 cents per kilowatt-hour. The payments are on top of what system owners get for selling power back to utilities, a signal that...
  • Turmoil at climate talks as blame game heats up

    11/20/2013 3:36:49 PM PST · by TurboZamboni · 16 replies
    AP ^ | 11-20-13 | karl ritter
    WARSAW, Poland—Rich and poor nations are struggling with a yawning rift at the U.N. climate talks as developing countries look for new ways to make developed countries accept responsibility for global warming—and pay for it. With two days left, there was commotion in the Warsaw talks Wednesday after negotiators for developing nations said they walked out of a late-night meeting on compensation for the impact of global warming. "We do not see a clear commitment of developed parties to reach an agreement," said Rene Orellana, head of Bolivia's delegation
  • The left is now eating its own: MoveOn.org not happy ObamaCare has become a "political nightmare'

    11/20/2013 7:46:21 AM PST · by SeekAndFind · 25 replies
    American Thinker ^ | 11/20/2013 | Sally Zelikovsky
    MoveOn.org is not happy that ObamaCare has become a "political nightmare" so they are blaming their cronies in the "mainstream media" (yes, they actually use that term) for failing to present balanced coverage of ObamaCare's successes. [See their latest mass email below.] To combat this grave injustice, they are launching a campaign against the Democrat-Media Complex by flooding newsrooms and the internet with stories of the millions of Americans who have purportedly benefitted from ObamaCare. Anyone who has been paying attention for the last 5 years -- even a liberal -- knows that any claim that the press is slanted...
  • As high-speed rail project falters, Obama’s vision of government remains unfulfilled

    11/08/2013 1:34:26 PM PST · by Brad from Tennessee · 30 replies
    Washington Post ^ | November 8, 2013 | By Juliet Eilperin
    MILWAUKEE — The gleaming red-and-white trains sit motionless in a cavernous warehouse in Century City, an industrial neighborhood that cranked out 100 million car and truck frames in its heyday. The seats are draped in plastic; an electronic screen on one reads, “Quiet Car. 11:10 a.m. 000 MPH.” President Obama once hoped that these high-speed trains would be transporting passengers from Milwaukee to Madison, Wis., part of a broader system crisscrossing the Midwest and the nation. But Wisconsin’s Republican governor, Scott Walker, rejected $823 million in funding that the federal government was offering, and the Transportation Department transferred the funds...
  • Report: DOE Withheld Data on Bankrupt Green Energy Company

    11/05/2013 4:42:40 PM PST · by Nachum · 11 replies
    Free Beacon ^ | 11/5/13 | Lachlan Markay
    The Department of Energy withheld troubling cost and performance data on a major stimulus award from a federal watchdog before the company servicing the award went bankrupt, according to a report released on Tuesday. The report focuses on the department’s handling of a pair of federal awards worth about $126 million for ECOtality, a San Francisco-based green energy company that declared bankruptcy in September. DOE’s inspector general, which authored Tuesday’s report, released an audit in July that expressed concerns about the department’s management of ECOtality’s $100 million stimulus award for the installation of electric vehicle charging stations. The report revealed...
  • Department of Veteran Affairs Spent Millions on Florida Conferences

    10/30/2013 7:32:13 PM PDT · by huldah1776 · 7 replies
    Washington Free Beacon ^ | Oct 30, 2013 | Daniel Wiser
    The Department of Veterans’ Affairs (VA) spent hundreds of thousands of dollars on marketing materials and promotional items for a pair of conferences that cost taxpayers at least $6.1 million. Included was $50,000 on a parody video of the Oscar-winning movie Patton and a request to have the Washington Redskins cheerleaders appear at a kick-off event.
  • Experts stunned at cost for Healthcare.gov website development

    10/22/2013 6:05:39 AM PDT · by Oldeconomybuyer · 173 replies
    My FOX-TV DC ^ | October 22, 2013
    “My overall sense, right from day one, was it was created by people who had never created a commercial database application before," said FMS Software developer Luke Chung. Chung looked over the site and was stunned by the code and the cost - by some estimates, perhaps $200 million. Chung continued, “At $200 an hour, that would be a million man hours, 5,000 man years. I don't think they had time to use 5,000 man years. So I don't know where the money went. I don't know what these people were doing. There're not that many web pages. I don't...
  • Feds: Tenn cost for reopening Smokies $60K per day

    10/15/2013 5:58:05 AM PDT · by don-o · 41 replies
    AP via WJHL ^ | October 14, 2013 | ERIK SCHELZIG
    CLARKSVILLE, Tenn. (AP) - Gov. Bill Haslam says a deal to open the Great Smoky Mountains National Park parks in Tennessee for the weekend came too late for the state to send money to the federal government. The price tag? $60,000 per day.
  • The Obamacare bomb - The scheme is about to blow up the incentive to work

    09/14/2013 11:04:20 AM PDT · by Jim Robinson · 62 replies
    Washington Times ^ | Sept 9, 2013
    A mere three weeks remain before the Obamacare exchanges open for business. The likely result will be the closing doors on Main Street, as shopkeepers and entrepreneurs shut down, unable to make ends meet. It’s clear that the wounded economy can’t cope with the exploding costs ahead. Ohio announced that premiums would rise in the individual market by an average of 88 percent next year. Premiums will rise 72 percent in Indiana, 125 percent in Wisconsin. Even California, with its relatively robust individual market, is bracing for increases of 66 percent. The Obamacare train wreck bearing down on us is...
  • Key Obamacare questions remain unanswered

    09/13/2013 9:55:25 AM PDT · by Jim Robinson · 5 replies
    Orlando Sentinel ^ | Sept 13, 2013 | By Scott Powers
    With fewer than three weeks until the kickoff of the new Obamacare health-insurance exchange, Florida's 3.8 million uninsured residents still don't have answers to key questions, such as how much will the plans cost, what they will cover and how to sign up. Gov. Rick Scott and the Florida Legislature opted not to participate directly in Obamacare, making Florida one of 26 states that have left it to the federal government to set up the online "exchange" that will enable individuals and families to purchase subsidized coverage. Obamacare requires that most uninsured people purchase coverage — either through their jobs,...
  • If You Send Your Kid to Private School, You Are a Bad Person (LEFTIST BRAINWASHING ALERT)

    09/01/2013 6:38:34 PM PDT · by Aircop_2006 · 27 replies
    Slate Magazine ^ | 08/29/2013 | Allison Benedikt
    ou are a bad person if you send your children to private school. Not bad like murderer bad—but bad like ruining-one-of-our-nation’s-most-essential-institutions-in-order-to-get-what’s-best-for-your-kid bad. So, pretty bad. I am not an education policy wonk: I’m just judgmental. But it seems to me that if every single parent sent every single child to public school, public schools would improve. This would not happen immediately. It could take generations. Your children and grandchildren might get mediocre educations in the meantime, but it will be worth it, for the eventual common good. (Yes, rich people might cluster. But rich people will always find a way...
  • Embezzler was hired by CA high-speed rail agency

    08/29/2013 3:39:43 PM PDT · by Attention Surplus Disorder · 6 replies
    San Francisco Chronicle aka SFGate ^ | Thursday, August 29, 2013 | unk
    SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — A woman who embezzled $320,000 from a California state agency was later hired by the state's High-Speed Rail Authority — and she says nobody asked about her background. The Sacramento Bee (http://bit.ly/141r1Z6 ) says Carey Moore spent two years in prison after pleading no contest to grand theft in 2007. Prosecutors say she embezzled from the Department of Child Support Services. In 2011, Moore was hired by the High-Speed Rail Authority. Her job included making travel plans for officials. Her state job application didn't ask whether she'd been convicted of a crime and Moore says nobody...
  • Exclusive: U.S. delays deadline for finalizing Obamacare health plans

    08/28/2013 9:49:24 AM PDT · by Jim Robinson · 5 replies
    Reuters ^ | Aug 28, 2013 | By David Morgan and Caroline Humer
    Reuters) - The Obama administration has delayed a step crucial to the launch of the new healthcare law, the signing of final agreements with insurance plans to be sold on federal health insurance exchanges starting October 1. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) notified insurance companies on Tuesday that it would not sign final agreements with the plans between September 5 and 9, as originally anticipated, but would wait until mid-September instead, according to insurance industry sources. Nevertheless, Joanne Peters, a spokeswoman for HHS, said the department remains "on track to open" the marketplaces on time on...
  • As Obamacare rollout nears, president checks in with state officials

    08/21/2013 5:23:57 PM PDT · by Jim Robinson · 10 replies
    Reuters ^ | Aug 21, 2013 | By Mark Felsenthal
    (Reuters) - President Barack Obama sought a progress report from state officials on Wednesday on the rollout of his signature health care law, stepping up his profile on the issue as the launch of a key provision of the law nears on October 1. Obama spoke by videoconference with the officials responsible for setting up new online health insurance exchanges that are at the heart of the program. These markets will offer private coverage at federally subsidized rates to individuals and families with low-to-moderate incomes. With the launch date less than five weeks away, the administration faces a daunting challenge...
  • Big setback for California high-speed rail project

    08/21/2013 2:40:48 PM PDT · by Jim Robinson · 15 replies
    sfgate ^ | Aug 16, 2013 | AP
    Sacramento -- Dealing a major blow to California's high-speed rail project, a Sacramento County judge ruled Friday that the agency overseeing the bullet train failed to comply with the financial and environmental promises made to voters when they approved initial funding for the project five years ago. Superior Court Judge Michael Kenny said the California High-Speed Rail Authority "abused its discretion by approving a funding plan that did not comply with the requirements of the law" and has failed to identify "sources of funds that were more than merely theoretically possible." Yet he declined to immediately halt funding for the...
  • Tesla Model S scores highest marks ever on U.S. crash testing

    08/20/2013 9:10:28 PM PDT · by grundle · 62 replies
    yahoo.com ^ | August 20, 2013 | Justin Hyde
    As much as electric car builders hail their vehicles as the future of transportation, one question they couldn't answer fully was just how well their vehicles would withstand a crash. Automakers have spent decades finessing their chassis; what happened when an engine-less vehicle went head-on into a barrier wasn't clear, and as the post crash-test smoldering of a Chevy Volt demonstrated, the batteries posed new challenges. Leave it to Tesla to provide the first hard evidence — with data from U.S. government tests showing the Model S sedan may be the most crash-proof passenger vehicle on the road today. Normally,...
  • The Republican Leadership Is Getting Massively Out-Organized on Obamacare

    08/16/2013 10:58:51 AM PDT · by Jim Robinson · 18 replies
    Atlantic Wire ^ | Aug 16, 2013 | By Philip Bump
    The Republican Party is spending its summer engaged in traditional, old-timey fun, like this massive tug-of-war between congressional leadership and conservative members and activists over Obamacare. The leadership is diligently trying to pull the party toward an intricate legislative solution to the dispute, while the base is organizing all of its friends over to yank everyone off a cliff. That's a little strong, but perhaps not too much. There's a to-hell-with-it feel to the Republican base's opposition to Obamacare. If Democrats in the Senate or the White House won't vote to kill the program, a program central to conservative critique...
  • Obamacare targets "Young Invincibles" demographic

    08/16/2013 10:08:12 AM PDT · by Jim Robinson · 15 replies
    CBS News ^ | Aug 16, 2013 | By Bem Tracy
    (CBS News) LOS ANGELES - In about seven weeks, Americans can start buying health insurance on the new exchanges that will be part of the Affordable Care Act. Thursday, the Obama administration announced $67 million in awards to more than 100 organizations that will help people understand their options. The key to the success of what the president himself calls "Obamacare" is getting young folks to sign up. Jordan Zavaleta is what the health care industry calls a "young invincible." He's 26 and has no health insurance, largely because it's expensive to buy on his own and he rarely gets...
  • David Axelrod: More fixes for Obamacare

    08/16/2013 9:53:05 AM PDT · by Jim Robinson · 12 replies
    Politico ^ | Aug 16, 2013 | By Tal Kopan
    Former White House adviser David Axelrod said Friday that more changes to Obamacare will be coming as the program is implemented, and that’s how it should be. Axelrod was asked on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” whether in the wake of delays and changes to Obamacare there would be more tweaking moving forward. “I have to believe that’s going to be the case,” Axelrod said. “Any time you implement something like this, it’s new and there’s no doubt that it’s complicated, there will be changes along — there should be changes along the way.” Axelrod said the president will fix Obamacare as...
  • CNN: LATEST OBAMACARE DELAY 'COULD HAVE A HUGE POLITICAL IMPACT'

    08/15/2013 12:43:05 PM PDT · by Jim Robinson · 65 replies
    Breitbart ^ | Aug 15, 2013 | By Wynton Hall
    On Thursday, CNN senior reporter John King said that the Obama Administration’s most recent delay of a key Obamacare provision that was supposed to limit consumers’ out-of-pocket expenses on deductibles and co-pays could prove seismic come the 2014 midterm elections. “This one particularly though could have a huge political impact,” said CNN reporter John King. “Because as you mention, hidden in bureaucratic language, the end result is that when these changes kick in, the Administration promised for most Americans your costs would go down. Now it is saying, at least in the short term, your costs could be higher than...
  • Will Obamacare rollout be smooth sailing or a ‘train wreck’?

    08/15/2013 11:06:25 AM PDT · by Jim Robinson · 23 replies
    McClatchy ^ | Aug 13, 2013 | By Tony Pugh
    WASHINGTON — Just seven weeks before the new state insurance marketplaces are set to open under the Affordable Care Act, it’s unclear whether the long-anticipated October rollout will be a smooth operation or the "train wreck" that some have predicted. Systems testing for the marketplaces is months behind schedule, according to recent government reports. So are funding and training for navigators, the outreach and enrollment workers who’ll help people choose marketplace health plans. In a final bit of down-to-the-wire drama, the data hub, which routes information from the marketplaces to various federal databases, might not get its final stamp of...
  • GM to Lose Even More on Each Chevy Volt

    08/08/2013 11:35:04 AM PDT · by jazusamo · 19 replies
    NLPC ^ | August 8, 2013 | Mark Modica
    The Chevy Volt madness continued this week with General Motors announcing that consumers will see a $5,000 decrease in the price of President Obama's favorite green wonder-car. Sales of the Volt have been dismal, with most consumers refusing to be as smitten with the car as the President and the few enthusiastic green ideologues who seemed to believe that spending approximately $20,000 more for a car (over a gas-powered rival) that can save them about $3 a day in gas makes sense. What seems to go unrecognized is the fact that the price cut comes at the expense of GM...
  • Delta tunnel project to radically change Sacramento County landscape (CA)

    04/29/2013 10:02:17 AM PDT · by MeganC · 11 replies
    The Sacramento Bee ^ | 28 April 2013 | Matt Weiser
    When Daniel Wilson learned earlier this year that the state of California wants to bulldoze his family's pear orchard to build a giant Sacramento River water diversion, he and his brother were making a major new investment in the crop. Located near the town of Hood, in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta, the orchard has grown Bartlett pears for 50 years as the foundation of the family farm. But Bartletts are not as marketable as they once were. So the brothers were grafting thousands of trees to grow new pear varieties – Bosc and River Maid Red – to ensure viable...
  • Light-Rail to Nowhere: Honolulu, Hawaii's Train Boondoggle

    08/05/2013 6:52:55 AM PDT · by cutty · 15 replies
    Reason ^ | August 1, 2013 | Sharif Matar
    there's no reason to believe the Honolulu's rail project will do anything to improve traffic congestion. In fact, it's likely to divert resources from more-affordable solutions. "The one thing about these projects [is that] they are very inviting politically," says former Hawaii Gov. Ben Cayetano. Along with Cliff Slater of Honolulutraffic.com and University of Hawaii's Roth, Cayetano has filed a federal lawsuit against the rail project that's held up construction. They claim the city misled the public about the total cost of the project and didn't deliver fully on a required review of alternative solutions to a rail line. Panos...