This week, a prospective merger between American Airlines and U.S. Airways stalled, when the United States Department of Justice and six states’ attorneys general filed an antitrust lawsuit. If the merger succeeds, it would create the largest air carrier in the world. The DOJ cited numerous concerns over the effects that a newly merged airline company would mean for consumers.
In a refreshing change, it seems the DOJ is suddenly oriented toward thrift, and consumer protections. It is the government you have always wanted – they are looking out for you. It sounds great, right?
Read the rest on Conservative Daily News.
In his February 16, 2013 column in the Guardian, columnist Will Hutton lays out the numerous failings of the British Food Standards Agency (FSA), which led to horse meat entering the human food chain. The horse-meat scandal may actually turn out to be two parallel mislabeling scams. Whatever the case, and as strange as mislabeled horse-meat is – it is not my primary issue.
My issue is with Hutton’s disgusting use of the scandal. Mirroring the penchant for American “journalists” who turn their columns and shows into personal soap boxes, Hutton takes swipes at right wingers in the United States, and he espouses the supposed ability of large government to function better than a slim and efficient one. Hutton especially takes to task a British politician who supported cuts in the funding of the FSA.
Hutton would have us believe a fully funded FSA would not have allowed this fiasco to occur. Indeed, an FSA, or any other governmental agency that does not receive adequate funding, is the cause for any accidents and other unfortunate mistakes that then occur. Hutton thinks that because the politicians, often times responding to their voters’ concerns, reduce funding to a bloated agency, they should receive the anger and onus of the press and people too.
Hutton so seems to dislike politician Owen Patterson, he goes so far as to make a personal attack of the man, referring to him as “one of the less sharp knives in the political drawer”. Hutton’s anger seethes against anyone he deems “connected” to the scandal. He attacks the large supermarket chains who seek to price food where the consumer can afford it, he attacks the stock holders of the supermarkets, he attacks right-wing think tanks in the U.S., and he eventually goes so far as attacking capitalism itself, saying it does not deliver the best outcomes.
Within those barbs fed by misunderstanding and assumption, Hutton joins so many of the American left, who hear the word, “capitalism”, and either rage or cringe. The cause of so much damage to people, the cause of so much environmental damage – is the dreaded capitalism. Never mind that it is also the reason there are 90 different types of bread on the supermarket shelves or that it is the reason that clothing is still relatively inexpensive and easily replaced — we must see like Mr. Hutton, that capitalism is inherently evil. Everything it touches, businesses, politicians, and workers are worse off, Hutton would have us believe.
Oddly though – the tax revenue that the capitalism structure generates that allows the left’s dream of bloated and inefficient government programs – well, that is the only good thing that comes from capitalism. Somehow, running the funds through the filter of government who then divvy them out, changes the funds from merely evil capital, based on worker exploitation, to a wonderful means to a social end. Again, in a parallel with the left in the United States, Will Hutton seeks to use a crisis to further the false cause of enlarging the government’s reach and its strength.
I find it interesting that while the right, conservatives especially, often find themselves fitted with the mantle of being a backward-looking anachronism, the left on both sides of the pond, seem constantly to recycle their failed policies of Keynesian spending and bloated government structures. A strength of conservatives is to not only look to history for measures that work, but to look back, and abandon and prevent measures that have failed. Perhaps the left should finally abandon the continuous failure that is Keynesian economics – but with as rabidly as some support left-wing politics, you have a better chance of having lunch with a Kentucky Derby winner…
When I am in the mood for some nonsensical, ludicrous, rantings and ravings, there is a very good chance that someone (or some agency) that embraces a left-wing ideology, will come through. This week, I was not let down. The left came through with a couple of highly visible, and highly questionable, actions. One of which is on-going, and currently in the legal system, and the other has received so much blow-back, it has already been withdrawn.
First, in response to Indiana’s new labor law, making Indiana a right-to-work state, a union decided to file a lawsuit. The International Union of Operating Engineers, Local 150, filed suit in Northern Indiana District Court, against Governor Mitch Daniels, Attorney General Gregory Zoeller, and Indiana Department of Labor Commissioner, Lori Torres. The union claims that they must be allowed to continue to collect dues from non-union workers, because the non-union workers also benefit from the union’s negotiations and receive similar pay to unionized workers (I think of it as a knee-capping being sold under the guise of “fairness”). While I understand that the union has to coordinate various activities and pay assorted administrative costs, when I see unions in different states, throwing millions of dollars at campaigns to recall governors, and donating millions of dollars to get “friendly” candidates elected, my empathy wanes.
It appears that the union wants the methods it uses to exact goodies from the employers, to be used on the workers as well. The union is saying that they need someone or someway to compel people to give them capital, so that they can perform operations. The Indiana law removes that compelling force, and makes unions responsible for actually creating a tangible return on payee money. Instead, the union wastes more money on a lawsuit that they are more than likely to lose, and as if that were not a big enough fiasco, the lawsuit claims without that compelling force, the state is acting in a manner that is tantamount to slavery. Citing the 13th Amendment, the union claims that they are being forced to provide a service, without payment, which is therefore, “involuntary servitude.” The union mentions too, that the new law violates Article I, Section 21 of the Indiana Constitution, because the union would have to provide their services “…without just compensation.” Yes, that is correct – the union is claiming that they are being made slaves to their members, since the members would no longer have to pay dues. Never mind the fact that the union can choose to not provide services to non-paying members…
The second liberal logical misstep occurred when it was revealed that the United States Department of Labor wanted to change rules regarding child labor laws regarding farming. For Americans already fed up with what they consider government meddling, hearing that the government wants to dictate to parents, that they can no longer have their kids farming beside them was a step too far. The proposal would have allowed for some older children to work around animals and equipment (banning nearly all teens under 16 from working around power equipment), but only after completing a new “90 hour federal government training course”, which would replace tried and true training from other entities (like 4-H). Farming families were shocked to learn that they now were at the mercy of the government as to the things that they could teach their children. Thousands of angry emails and messages later, the administration decided that, perhaps this was not such a great idea to waste their non-existent political capital on. Trying to spin the reversal, the Labor Department said they wanted to help “…protect the rural way of life.”
These two failures of the left to use some common sense and insist that their way is the only way, is precisely why a large amount of the country does not trust the left, or do they any longer accept anything that the left says with an open mind. The continuous nonsense that the left has tried to sell the U.S. for the past decade, has created a hyper-cynical and disbelieving public, which has had the effect of also infecting the media, due to their strong support of the policies. We now have a highly ineffective media, and a political wing, whether it may ever stumble on a good idea or not, that is not even taken at face value. The country now faces one large group of angry, entitled special interests, and an administration and press that reinforces their (incorrect) belief that they should be entitled. What could go wrong?
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