The $30 Billion Social Security Hack

Sometime last year computers at the U.S. Social Security Administration were hacked and the identities of millions of Americans were compromised. What, you didn’t hear about that?  Nobody did.

The extent of damage is only just now coming to light in the form of millions of false 2011 income tax returns filed in the names of people currently receiving Social Security benefits. That includes a very large number of elderly and disabled people who are ill-equipped to recognize or fight the problem.

But don’t worry, ObamaCare won’t be like that. Via I, Cringely » Blog Archive The $30 billion Social Security hack – I, Cringely – Cringely on technology.

If Supreme Court Dumps ObamaCare, Republicans Must Be Ready

… but I predict they won’t be. The Republicans are too often as big-government as the Democrats. Regardless:

[There is no] shortage of free-market health care solutions. Among them:

• End the tax discrimination against individual insurance buyers.

• Let consumers buy plans across state lines, giving states an incentive to rein in their out-of-control benefit mandates.

• Let small groups establish association health plans to get benefits of scale.

• Ease the rules that are choking off the medical savings account market.

• Reform the nation’s tort laws.

The Supreme Court debate this week exposed the left’s health care vision in all its glory — one that relies on massive federal spending and unprecedented intrusiveness into every aspect of our lives.

This June, Republicans may very well have the chance to offer an alternative vision that relies instead on free markets, consumer choice and open competition to improve what is already the world’s best health care system.

via If Supreme Court Dumps ObamaCare, Republicans Must Be Ready –

The Health Care Disaster and the Miseries of Blue

Obamacare was supposed to be the capstone in the arch of a new progressive era. The Dems were going to show us all that government really does work. Smart government by smart people, using modern methods and the latest up to the minute research from carefully peer reviewed articles in well regarded social science journals can solve big social problems. Obamacare was going to be such a big hit that even the bitter clingers would have to put down their guns and their Bibles long enough to thank the Democrats for this wonderful new benefaction.

But even if the Supreme Court doesn’t pull the trigger and kill the law in June, the darn thing won’t fly. The public hates it, and the longer it’s on the books the less popular it gets. This isn’t like Social Security, a program the public fell in love with early on and still cherishes today. It isn’t like Head Start, which remains dearly beloved even though there doesn’t seem to be much evidence that it helps anybody other than the people it employs. Obamacare is only marginally more popular than the Afghan War; already its estimated cost has doubled and we all know these numbers are likely to continue to increase. Obamacare so far is a political flop and shows ominous early signs of being a policy misfire as well. The benefits don’t seem to measure up to the hype, more people are going to lose their existing insurance, premiums are going up and the impact on the deficit is going to be worse.

via The Health Care Disaster and the Miseries of Blue | Via Meadia.

Mom Doesn’t Want to be a Parent Anymore and Leaves Kids

If a man does this, he’s a monster; if a woman does it, she’s empowered:

This morning’s TODAY Show featured a segment on a woman who chose to leave her husband and two young sons (ages 3 and 5 at the time) while on an extended research trip to Japan because she realized she didn’t want to be a mom anymore leaves my chest tight and my gut aching.

via Mom Doesn’t Want to be a Parent Anymore and Leaves Kids –

The Misandry Bubble

The Western World has quietly become a civilization that undervalues men and overvalues women, where the state forcibly transfers resources from men to women creating various perverse incentives for otherwise good women to conduct great evil against men and children, and where male nature is vilified but female nature is celebrated.  This is unfair to both genders, and is a recipe for a rapid civilizational decline and displacement, the costs of which will ultimately be borne by a subsequent generation of innocent women, rather than men, as soon as 2020. 

via The Futurist: The Misandry Bubble.

A Good Person, Making Bad Choices? Wrong.

… "I want to learn why I am this way."  Then what?  Will learning why you made those choices be what changes your choices?  You’re still eating junk food, aren’t you?  You’re eating it while you’re learning  how bad it is. 

"But… why am I this way?"  That question is a narcissistic defense.  It doesn’t want an answer, it wants you to keep asking the question.

"I’m a good person, I just am making bad choices."  Wrong.  You’re not a good person until you make good choices.  Until then you are chaos.

Via The Last Psychiatrist: “My fiancee is pushing me away and I’ve lost hope”.

Smart In One Area != Smart In All Areas

Brilliance –- even genius — is no guarantee that consequential factors have not been left out or misconceived. Intelligence minus judgment equals intellect. Wisdom is the rarest quality of all–the ability to combine intellect,  knowledge, experience, and judgment in a way to produce a coherent understanding…Wisdom requires self-discipline and an understanding of the realities of the world, including the limitations of one’s own experience and of reason itself. The opposite of high intellect is dullness or slowness, but the opposite of wisdom is foolishness, which is far more dangerous.

Emphasis mine. Via PJ Lifestyle » “Intelligence minus judgment equals intellect.”.

“Household Income” Is A Poor Measure — Use “Per Capita Income” Instead

One source of data that people often use is median household income. It’s a good idea to use the median rather than the mean -– the mean can be very misleading. For example, the mean income of Harvard graduates who studied economics is going to be very high in the year that Jeremy Lin graduated. John Elway, another econ grad, pulled up the mean dramatically for Stanford grads that year.

But there is a problem with median household income and those who use it relentlessly to grind their policy axes never mention it. The problem is that when household structure is unstable, comparing medians over time is a very poor way of assessing the progress of the typical person.

As I have written many times, rising divorce rates in the 1970?s for example, meant that the number of households in the US grew 26.7%. Population grew only 11.5%. There was an increase in the number of households as one household became two. If both people were working, that alone would likely decrease median household income. If only one of the spouses was working, it was usually the man. The former wife found herself in the labor force unexpectedly. Her income is likely to be below the median. Both of these effects create new households with incomes below the median, dragging down the median over time.

via Inequality and Stagnation.

TSA: Fail

The entire TSA paradigm is flawed. It requires an impossibility for it to succeed. For the TSA model to work, every single possible means of causing danger to an aircraft or its passengers must be eliminated. This is an impossibility. While passengers are being frisked and digitally strip-searched a few dozen yards away, cooks and dish washers at the local concourse “Chili’s” are using and cleaning butcher knives.

via gmancasefile: TSA: Fail.