Thinking Right’s weekend free-for-all. Pick a topic:
● Bob Knoller of CBS News kept a tab on how much time Barack Obama and George W. Bush spent on the golf course. Obama’s played more than Bush did in more than two years. No criticism’s heard. But then Obama doesn’t fit the stereotype liberals assign to Republicans.
● One day it’s a national emergency. The next it’s “the swine flu monster seems to be retreating from Georgia.” This emergency appears to be one part flu, one part an effort to pass ObamaCare, and one part a desire to show what this government could have done had it managed the Katrina problem.
● Headline: “Health care bill includes public option.” Notice that whenever the Democratic Party leaders in Congress find their center, as Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid of Nevada attempted in reducing several versions into a single bill, it’s always to the left. When you scare off Olympia Snowe, as Reid did with the public option, you’re far out there. Snowe, a Maine Republican, was the only member of her party to support Democratic efforts to remake America’s health care system.
● One despicable aspect of the health care cram-down is the class warfare. To pass legislation or raise taxes, Democrats have to find villains — the health insurance industry, for example — to make the rabble believe somebody’s getting something they’re not. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi trashed the insurance industry for “obscene profits” and “immoral profits.” The Associated Press examined the claim. The truth, as reported by the AP: “Health insurers posted a 2.2 percent profit margin last year, placing them 35th on the Fortune 500 list of top industries.”
● U.S. Sen. Joe Lieberman will join Republicans in filibustering the public option. Thanks, Joe. America needs you. President Obama, meanwhile, filibusters a winning strategy in Afghanistan. He’s not deliberate; he’s indecisive. Well, not entirely. All bad things were George Bush’s fault; of that, he’s quickly certain.
● The two pilots who overshot Minneapolis by 150 miles have overshot their careers by about a week. Hang it up, boys.
● The school-based interest groups that do their best to defeat any change to the public education status quo had for decades controlled the Georgia General Assembly. No bill passed without the education establishment’s OK. About four years ago, that began to change. This year legislators allowed state-chartered public schools to receive the local taxes levied on a child’s behalf. Atlanta joins Gwinnett, Bulloch, Candler and DeKalb in filing suit. Pure and simple: the money should follow the child. Period.
● Kudos to Doraville city officials for a rousing display of good sense. City council unanimously rejected a proposal to turn the prime GM site into a football stadium for the Atlanta Falcons. It could do for Doraville what professional baseball venues have done for the area south of I-20.
● The city of Atlanta is “scrambling” to spend $30 million in federal deficit money. As the AJC’s D.L. Bennett reported: “Atlanta officials have pushed through more than 50 last-minute deals with service agencies who hope to spend like crazy before the program expires Dec. 31.” Somewhere at a Waffle House, there’s a struggling-mom waitress desperate for dollar tips whose paycheck is being levied by politicians in Washington to pay for Atlanta’s shameful exercise in waste.
● We’re not still debating whether surveillance cameras in public spaces are big brotherism, are we? Nobody should have an expectation of privacy in public places. Atlanta’s applying for $13.7 million in federal funds to put about 500 cameras on city streets. Go for it. Catch the rats.
● Headline: “The rats are coming to Atlanta, study says.” Oh, the cheap-shot temptations that are placed before the disciplined commentator. I’ll merely observe that lots of undesirables are already here.