Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Waivers will not continue to be written; Middle schoolers required to answer sex survey; House forces government contractors to us labor unions; University of Colorado exaggerates affects of global warming; Obama's governement plans for recovery; Texas avoids lightbulb ban

The San Francisco Chronicle wrote: A program that allows McDonald's Corp., the world's largest restaurant chain, and the insurer Cigna Corp. to avoid providing the minimum health coverage mandated by last year's overhaul will stop accepting applicants in September, the government said today.

Companies that already have exemptions from the mandate will be able to continue their "mini-med" health plans with annual maximum coverage of $10,000. The health-care overhaul signed last year by President Barack Obama raised the minimum coverage level to $750,000 for those who weren't granted the waivers.
The government is closing down the program because there's no need for new applications, Steve Larsen, director of the Center for Consumer Information and Insurance Oversight, said during a call with reporters. "For the vast majority of plans that would need a waiver, those are the ones that would have applied and did apply this year," said Larsen, whose office is implementing the law's regulations on health insurers.

Read more: http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/g/a/2011/06/17/bloomberg1376-LMY5HZ1A1I4H01-0903D8B7ASGKMGCCOR733SJN52.DTL#ixzz1PaOc1OLp
Fox News reports: A middle school in Massachusetts is under fire for requiring children to complete a graphic sex survey -- without parental knowledge or consent -- that included questions about sexual partners and oral sex.
The Rutherford Institute, a civil liberties organization, filed a complaint with the U.S. Dept. of Education against the Fitchburg School Committee. They are representing the two middle school-aged daughters of Arlene Tessitore.
Whitehead said the girls were deeply disturbed by the subject matter of the study – including questions about suicide, drug use and sexual behavior.
“One of the questions is, ‘have you ever had oral sex,’” Whitehead said. “You’re talking about kids who probably don’t even know what oral sex is.”
He said the survey also delved into even more graphic language.
“It’s adult material,” he told Fox News Radio, noting that one question asked students what method they used to prevent pregnancy during their last sexual encounter.

Redstate writes: the House passed the largely non-controversial Military Construction/Veterans Affairs Appropriations (MilCon) bill for FY 2012.  Unfortunately, it is these non-controversial bills which provide a safe haven for meretricious policy initiatives through the rapid fire amendment process.  While everyone was focused on presidential politics, the House passed an amendment forcing government contractors to use labor unions on federal construction projects.  Oh, and like most bad legislation, this amendment passed by one vote, with the help of 27 Republicans.  http://www.redstate.com/dhorowitz3/2011/06/14/dozens-of-republicans-vote-for-handouts-to-big-labor/
The University of Colorado’s Sea Level Research Group decided in May to add 0.3 millimeters -- or about the thickness of a fingernail -- every year to its actual measurements of sea levels, sparking criticism from experts who called it an attempt to exaggerate the effects of global warming.

Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/scitech/2011/06/17/research-center-under-fire-for-adjusted-sea-level-data/#ixzz1PlF3vkgT
Investors.com reports: The president has unveiled a plan to cut joblessness with an industrial policy from the 19th century. In this "new" economy, government will pick winners and losers for industry. It didn't work then, it won't work now.
Taking a cue from classical Marxist theory as well as vintage union organizing doctrine, both discounting the value of service work over manufacturing, we now see President Obama touting training for factory jobs over all others, pushing government spending in that area and calling it a jobs recovery plan.
"I see a future where we train workers who make things here in the United States, and continue a important and honorable tradition of folks working with their hands, creating value, not just shuffling paper," he said Wednesday at Northern Virginia Community College, urging students to pack up and go to ... Detroit.
As he announced his public-private "Skills for America" partnership to train and credential 500,000 students for jobs in industries favored by the Obama administration, it bears looking at how at odds this approach is to both history and economic reality.  http://www.investors.com/NewsAndAnalysis/Article/574950/201106091846/Job-Plan-With-A-Page-From-Marx.htm
Fox News reports: State lawmakers have passed a bill that allows Texans to skirt federal efforts to promote more efficient light bulbs, which ultimately pushes the swirled, compact fluorescent bulbs over the 100-watt incandescent bulbs many grew up with.
The measure, sent to Gov. Rick Perry for consideration, lets any incandescent light bulb manufactured in Texas - and sold in that state - avoid the authority of the federal government or the repeal of the 2007 energy independence act that starts phasing out some incandescent light bulbs next year.
Read more: http://nation.foxnews.com/culture/2011/06/20/texas-tells-feds-shove-your-light-bulb-ban#ixzz1PrywZIW1
The U.S. Supreme Court has denied a petition for review from ACORN, ruling in effect that Congress was absolutely entitled to cut off federal taxpayer funding of ACORN, the depraved radicals who used to employ President Obama, according to reports.
The Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now had asked the high court to review a decision of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit which found that the funding cutoff was not a "bill of attainder" banned by the Constitution. ACORN had advanced the nonsensical argument that Congress had no power to stop funding the group unless it could prove it had done something wrong.  http://spectator.org/blog/2011/06/20/pedophiles-weep-as-supreme-cou#
Food industries are in an uproar over the proposal written by the Federal Trade Commission, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Food and Drug Administration and the U.S. Department of Agriculture.Tony the Tiger, some NASCAR drivers and cookie-selling Girl Scouts will be out of a job unless grocery manufacturers agree to reinvent a vast array of their products to satisfy the Obama administration’s food police.
Either retool the recipes to contain certain levels of sugar, sodium and fats, or no more advertising and marketing to tots and teenagers, say several federal regulatory agencies.
The same goes for restaurants.
It’s not just the usual suspected foods that are being targeted, such a thin mint cookies sold by scouts or M&Ms and Snickers, which sponsor cars in the Sprint Cup, but pretty much everything on a restaurant menu.

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