Cronyism Alive and Well In New Congress With Reintroduction of Gaming Bill

    Despite an expanded Republican majority, crony capitalism is off to a running start in the House of Representatives. (R-UT) fired the starting pistol by reintroducing legislation sought by a Las Vegas billionaire that would prohibit states from legalizing online gaming for citizens within their own borders. Sheldon Adelson, the owner of the Sands Casino, has openly bragged he would “spend whatever it takes” to prohibit | Read More »

    Geithner Threats Washed Away in S&P Deal

    Crossing the Obama Administration often comes at a cost and for the respected credit rating firm Standard and Poor’s (S&P), which has been around since the Civil War, that cost can be calculated at about $1 billion. In the aftermath of the Obama spending spree — the stimulus, cash for clunkers and, of course, ObamaCare — the S&P issued a warning about the torrent of | Read More »

    Hospital Lobby Continues Effort to Gut Anti-Fraud Provisions

    It is rare for Congress to identify rampant fraud and actually do something to prevent it. That’s what the Recovery Audit Contractor (RACs) Program in Medicare is all about. Like most anything that works, the program has become a target by the hospital. The American Hospital Association (AHA) has lobbied Congress, the White House and has even press the courts to end the RACs program. | Read More »

    Senate Delay on TRIA Would be Costly

    The cowardly attack on the satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo is an unpleasant reminder that terrorism is a constant threat and possibility.  Terrorism insurance has become a necessary requirement for things like construction projects but unlike auto and life insurance, we still do not have enough quantitative data to make an accurate prediction about the probability and the likely damage the next attack could cost. When | Read More »

    Obama Turns Blind Eye to Medicare Fraud

    In what appears to be a direct quid pro quo with hospitals for their support of ObamaCare, the White House has suspended a critical anti-fraud program run by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) that has found billions in mistaken and illegal payments since the program was created.  Hospitals appears to have been overpaid billions of dollars by Medicare and faced with the threat | Read More »

    White House Targeted Legal Businesses for Destruction

    New documents released by the House Government Reform Committee confirm what many suspected — the Department of Justice was working hand-in-hand with the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) to deny banking services to legal businesses it deemed immoral or unsavory.  Industries selected for destruction by Operation Choke Point included gun shops and the short-term lending industry, often referred to as “payday lending.” Despite testimony before Congress | Read More »

    Congress Poised to Create 4,000 Jobs in the Western United States

    Contained in the House passed National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) is a provision that would create 4,000 jobs in the Western United States and produce $60 million in productive economic activity over the next few years. The language was crafted over a decade and is the result of give-and-take between industry and the government. As Daniel McGroarty notes, some in the Obama administration are unwilling | Read More »

    Conservative Groups’ Opposition to Adelson Gaming Ban Piles Up

    A new coalition of conservative organizations has expressed opposition to Sheldon Adelson’s crony attempt to criminalize online competition to his casinos. The letter, organized by Americans for Tax Reform and signed by eleven other groups including the Campaign for Liberty, American Conservative Union and the American Consumer Institute expressed “strong concerns about S. 2159 Restoration of America’s Wire Act, and its companion House legislation H.R. | Read More »

    Idealism and the Economic Realities of TRIA

    Conservatives cheered when Republican leadership appointed Congressman (R-TX) to chair the House Financial Services Committee. Indeed, Mr. Hensarling has proven an avid reformer, continually pushing for ever greater conservative reforms in areas under his committee’s jurisdiction.  One of his targets, the Terrorism Risk Insurance Act (TRIA) is expected to be considered during the current Lame Duck session. The tragic events of September 11, 2001 brought | Read More »

    Look Who’s Lobbying for Price Controls: Meet John Rother

    Those of you with long memories should recall the name John Rother.  He was the head of the American Association of Retired People (AARP) back in the days when Hillary Clinton tried to nationalize our health care system.  Rother turned the organization into a leading cheerleader for “Hillary Care,” proclaiming “This is a good deal. It’s a good deal in dollars and cents.” It’s no wonder | Read More »