Wednesday, October 10, 2007

For the Children (Partly)

Proponents of expanding SCHIP (States Children's Health Insurance Program) would have us believe that children are being hurt by the President's decision to veto the bill, but apparently taxpayers pay for more under SCHIP than just coverage for children.

According to a press release from Republicans serving on the House Energy and Commerce Committee 13 states will spend more than 44 percent of their SCHIP funds in 2008 on people who are neither children nor pregnant women.

Michigan tops the list with 71.6 percent of its SCHIP money earmarked for adults who have no kids. In New Mexico, 52.3 percent of the state's SCHIP dollars will be spent on childless adults.

It'd be helpful if the proponents of the program were up-front with us about who, exactly, the taxpayers are buying insurance coverage for under this program.

HT: Michelle

Who Huck Is

The New Republic has a good piece on Mike Huckabee. The reader gets helpful insight into who Huckabee is and what sort of principles he holds. There are some things about him which some people will find difficult to accept, of course. He has a history, for example, of wanting to raise taxes, a fact most fiscal conservatives will find hard to overlook. He also supported, as governor of Arkansas, giving college scholarships to children of illegal aliens, an unfortunate blemish which will also raise some red flags about how serious he'd be on stopping illegal immigration.

Nevertheless, there is also much about him to like. He is generally conservative on social issues and perhaps most importantly, seems like a genuinely good man. Read the article and see what you think.


Strange Column

Tony Judt starts out sensibly in a New York Times editorial explaining why a number of liberals supported the war in Iraq, but as he gathers steam he proceeds to run himself right off the rails.

Consider the following puzzling paragraph:

Those of us who pressed for American-led military action in Bosnia and Kosovo did so for several reasons: because of the refusal of others (the European Union and United Nations) to engage effectively; because there was a demonstrable and immediate threat to rights and lives; and because it was clear we could be effective in this way and in no other. None of these considerations applied in Iraq, which is why I and many others opposed the war.

This is very strange. Mr. Judt believes that there was adequate justification for getting militarily involved in Kosova and Bosnia in the '90s but that those same justifications did not obtain in Iraq. How does he come to such an odd conclusion?

Surely he remembers that it was the failure of much of the rest of the world to do anything serious about Saddam that caused Mr. Bush to feel compelled to take action himself. Surely, he is aware of the murders and tortures which the Saddam regime was engaged in right up to the invasion. He cannot be unaware of the mass graves of tens of thousands of corpses that our troops uncovered in Iraq. Surely, too, he is aware of the twelve year diplomatic process the U.S. pushed in the U.N. that resulted in resolution after resolution, each one of which was used by Saddam merely to light his cigars.

It seems that Mr. Judt is either living in a state of self-delusion or he believes that by simply asserting something as though it were fact, his readers will accept it as the truth. In any case it's hard to imagine anyone giving credence to his reasoning.