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Thursday, March 29, 2012

Responses to Questions the Justices Asked about Obamacare

Memo to Justice Kennedy who asked: "Can you create commerce in order to regulate it?"

  • Interstate commerce exists when uninsured New Hampshire residents, living the State's motto "Live Free or Die," go to emergency rooms in Massachusetts hospitals.

Memo to Justice Scalia: who asked why people should have to pay for maternal care or pediatric care if they did not intend to use it?

  • Everyone in the courtroom received pediatric care; everyone in the courtroom's mother received maternal care. 
  • Our generation  has not been very good at ensuring inter-generational equity. We need to pay forward for the health care of the next generation.

Case closed!

Martin G. Evans
Nancy R. Evans

Sent to Boston Globe

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Death by Order of your President

It is very rarely that I agree with John Sununu. Today he has it exactly right (Boston Globe, March 19, 2012: A11)!

To attack and kill American citizens is an outrage. Even if these people are giving aid and comfort to our enemies, it is not acceptable to kill them without due, judicial process.

I am very much afraid that Obama's Justice Department has suffered cognitive capture by President Bush's Justice Department.  The ideas and values that were inculcated in the Department by that disastrous
administration have continued to the present day.  The whole idea of checks and balances in  the war on terror has been abandoned.

The President and the Attorney General claim that they are making reasoned and fair decisions. There was a time that I would have accepted those assurances. I no longer do so and I certainly do not want successor administrations to have this unfettered power.

It is past time for Congress to put constraints on this power and on the States Secrets privilege which has been used to hide administrative malfeasance behind a security blanket.

Sent to Boston Globe

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Let Romney be Romney

The reason Republicans are lukewarm (Cartoon, Economist, March10, 2012: 14) toward Romney is that his business experience is irrelevant to the problems being faced by the nation (Economist, March 10, 2012: 18).

Romney was very successful at the leveraged buyout. He made a lot of money from firms that amassed, at his instigation, a lot of debt, some of which was used to payoff the investors.

The problem, as Republicans see it, is that America has already amassed and is continuing to amass a lot of debt.

The Republicans would like to support a candidate who is skilled at paying down the debt.

Sent to the Economist

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Dialog on Campaign Financing


It is hard to argue that more speech is not better than less speech; yet that is what the Supreme Court decided last year in the case of  Arizona Free Enterprise Club's Freedom PAC v Bennett.  This disallowed an Arizona law that would have provided public financing to candidates who were competing against heavily self-financed opponents.

The problem with the flood of PAC money is that the volume of speech that it generates drowns out the speech of ordinary people who cannot compete in the advertising market. If there was some method for generating countervailing speech then Mr. Weinstock's competitive elections might well come into being (New York Times, March 6, 2012: A26). At present big money alone talks.

Sent to New York Times

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

The Republican Front Runners

OP-ED on the Republican Front Runners In the MetroWest Daily News


Like Brian McGrory, I think that the post-big dig disaster period was Governor Romney's finest hour (Shrinking Candidate, Boston Globe, March 2, 2012: B1).

It was however, the exception.

During his candidacy and during his time in office, Romney was characterized by the triumph of style (or photo-op) over substance.

When a candidate he worked for a day as a burger flipper and a fish processor so he could understand what ordinary folk were like. Great photo-ops but little gain in understanding. To gain that, he should have read "Nickled and Dimed" or "When Work Disappears" to understand the struggles that low income people go through day by day in the struggle to get work, to get to work, to get a home, and to get from and to home.

As Governor, he rode for one stop on the Red Line to show how safe the subway was after the London bombings -- again a great photo-op that was marred by his failure to know the exact fare.

Alas, I think the Romney we see in this campaign is the Romney that is. That is surprising given his vaunted analytic and managerial competence.