While You Were Out – Open Thread

In the ‘while you were out’ department, this went on while distracted by the goings on in Libya.

In January, Social Security recipients will get a 3.6% increase for a Cost Of Living Adjustment. But some won’t even notice. That’s because the increase will be eaten up by the increase in their Medicare premiums. Didn’t Obama say that under his plan your premiums would decrease?

And speaking of Obamacare, the CLASS Act was yanked out of it. On Friday afternoon, the Department of Health and Human Services released a report that said there was ‘no viable path forward’ to implementing the CLASS Act, a major — if little-advertised — piece of the administration’s signature Affordable Care Act. The reason it was pulled is that lawmakers could not certify that the Act would be paid for by subscribers. That’s because the number of subscribers they expect to get is nowhere near the figure used to justify it as not only a money-maker, but it was advertised to be contributing a full 40 percent of the funding needed for the Affordable Care Act. The real challenge for the administration is how to play this as no big deal. Especially when President Obama promised the American people that he would not sign the Affordable Care Act if it increased the debt one dime. The good news is, if you believe what President Obama says, he will be making an announcement very soon to ask congress to repeal the whole thing.

Winding down his bus-tour-that-isn’t-a-campaign-fundraising tour, President Obama is having trouble drawing crowds. Especially when his single stop in one city was not open to the public. He had a fundraiser in a union hall in Pennsylvania and couldn’t fill a 100 seat room. And at one of his last stops, touting his son of stimulus bill that he calls a jobs act to a lukewarm reception of  union firefighters, he had to encourage them to applaud. It’s like a human applause sign, and Barack was the sign. Who is it that’s ‘out of touch’ again? Barack Obama has really traveled a long way in the lives of the American people. And I don’t mean how he has put government in control of nearly everything. I mean how three years ago he was in front of huge white Greek columns in a packed stadium during his acceptance speech. Three years later he is trying to fire up a room-full of union members. Unsuccessfully I might add. Sucks to be him.

The Misery Index rose to its highest since 1983. The misery index — which is the sum of the country’s inflation and unemployment rates — rose to 13.0, pushed up by higher price data the government reported on Wednesday. The last time the misery index was at current levels was in 1983. And speaking of price data, have you noticed that whenever the government quotes inflation that they do not include food and energy prices in the mix? For example . . .

While the misery index rose in September, many economists expect some respite in coming months, driven by softer inflation.  Wednesday’s price data showed inflation outside food and energy rose at the slowest pace in six months in September.

So if you throw food and energy out, inflation is no big deal. After all, we don’t need to eat and we don’t need to get anywhere.  So it’s not a problem.  Everything’s looking rosy.

Then there’s the Department of Energy caught covering up records pertaining to Solyndra and SunPower. According to Andrew Stiles, National Review Online: “It appears as though the Obama administration has been caught red-handed trying to cover up evidence in relation to the ‘green’ loans programs that helped finance Solyndra. CNBC reports that a number of press releases posted by the Department of Energy have been retroactively altered to remove the name [of] a solar company thought by many to be the next ‘green’ failure:  The changes occurred in two press releases from the Department of Energy’s loan guarantee program — the same program that has been the center of controversy surrounding the failed solar company Solyndra.  Both were changed to remove the name of a company that has received negative press attention in recent days, SunPower, and replace it with the name of another company, NRG Energy.”

Last but not least, five-term Democratic Rep. Dennis Cardoza of California says he won’t seek re-election next year, blasting what he calls “the increasingly harsh tone in American politics.” Who can argue that Obama’s ‘new tone’ is nothing short of divisive politics at its worst?