These hackers should be arrested for breaking the law. Sadly, they did an amazing service to the world by revealing this. I hope the judge takes that into account.
E-mail messages between high-ranking scientists appear to indicate a conspiracy by some of the world’s leading global warming alarmists to falsify temperature data in order to exaggerate global averages.
Those involved allegedly include: James Hansen, Director of NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies; Michael Mann, famous for Mann’s "Hockey Stick"; Gavin Schmidt, NASA climate modeler, and; Stephen Schneider, Stanford professor and Al Gore confidant.
A statement released Friday by the alarmist website RealClimate has confirmed that e-mail servers at the University of East Anglia’s Climate Research Unit (CRU) in Norwich, England, were hacked recently with contents illegally made available over the Internet.
Having failed in their efforts to lose the War in Iraq democrats are not focusing on Afghanistan.
Speaker Pelosi lashed out at the brave Afghan leader, who has survived several assassination attempts, as an “unworthy partner” today. Karzai was inaugurated yesterday.
Having failed in Iraq, democrats hope to have better luck surrendering in Afghanistan.
Afghan President Hamid Karzai is an “unworthy partner” who does not deserve a big boost either in U.S. troops or civilian aid, U.S. House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi said.
Once again, liberals show their distain and hatred of traditional values, such as marriage. We won’t outlaw marriage, yet, but we will make you pay for it…
Generally we use the "Matrimonial Madness" category for discussions of same-sex marriage; but not this time. Today, in a bolt from the blue (staters), the Senate Democrats have snuck a ringer into Majority Leader Harry "Pinky" Reid’s (D-NV, 70%) version of ObamaCare… they created a new tax with a nasty "marriage penalty" to punish dopes who actually tie the knot, instead of simply living together (evidently the Democrat preferred option):
Senate Democrats’ health care bill would create a new marriage penalty by imposing a tax on individuals who make $200,000 annually but hitting married couples making just $50,000 more….
"Yes, this structure can create a ‘marriage penalty’ for some couples. It also creates a ‘marriage bonus’ for others," [Jim Manley, a Reid spokesman] said. "A married couple with one wage earner can earn up to $250,000 without facing this higher tax, whereas a single person in the same job with the same pay would be hit by it."
But a married couple in which each earner makes $150,000 would be hit with the tax, whereas an unmarried couple living together with the same incomes would not.
Ryan Ellis, tax policy director at Americans for Tax Reform, said the new marriage penalty comes on top of an existing one that’s always been part of the payroll tax, which funds Social Security and Medicare.
How interesting that this one state exemption made it into the bill and that it just so happens to affect one state… the stat of a person who was going to vote against ReidCare. So, for the low cost of only $100 million of your tax money, Reid bought himself a vote.
IS THIS CHANGE? IS THIS HOPE? No… it’s Beltway bribery as usual. From ABC’s The Note:
What does it take to get a wavering senator to vote for health care reform?
Here’s a case study.
On page 432 of the Reid bill, there is a section increasing federal Medicaid subsidies for “certain states recovering from a major disaster.”
The section spends two pages defining which “states” would qualify, saying, among other things, that it would be states that “during the preceding 7 fiscal years” have been declared a “major disaster area.”
I am told the section applies to exactly one state: Louisiana, the home of moderate Democrat Mary Landrieu, who has been playing hard to get on the health care bill.
In other words, the bill spends two pages describing would could be written with a single world: Louisiana. (This may also help explain why the bill is long.)
Senator Harry Reid, who drafted the bill, cannot pass it without the support of Louisiana’s Mary Landrieu.
How much does it cost? According to the Congressional Budget Office: $100 million.
Read the full bill
Read the tax revenue score from the Joint Committee on Taxation (JCT)
Read the budget and tax score from the Congressional Budget Office (CBO)
Individual Mandate Tax (Page 324/Sec. 1501/$8 bil): Starting in 2014, anyone not buying “qualifying” health insurance must pay an income surtax according to the following schedule (capped at 8 percent of income):
Exemptions for religious objectors, undocumented immigrants, prisoners, those earning less than the poverty line, members of Indian tribes, and hardship cases (determined by HHS).
Employer Mandate Tax (Page 348/Sec. 1513/$28 bil): If an employer does not offer health coverage, and at least one employee qualifies for a health tax credit, the employer must pay an additional non-deductible tax of $750 for all full-time employees. Applies to all employers with 50 or more employees.
If the employer requires a waiting period to enroll in coverage of 30-60 days, there is a $400 tax per employee ($600 if the period is 60 days or longer).
Excise Tax on Comprehensive Health Insurance Plans (Page 1979/Sec. 9001/$149.1 bil): Starting in 2013, new 40 percent excise tax on “Cadillac” health insurance plans ($8500 single/$23,000 family). Higher threshold ($9850 single/$26,000 family) for early retirees and high-risk professions. CPI +1 percentage point indexed.
From 2013-2015, the 17 highest-cost states are 120% of this level.
Employer Reporting of Insurance on W-2 (Page 1996/Sec. 9002/Min$): Preamble to taxing health benefits on individual tax returns.
Medicine Cabinet Tax (Page 1997/Sec. 9003/$5 bil): No longer allowable to use health savings account (HSA), flexible spending account (FSA), or health reimbursement (HRA) pre-tax dollars to purchase non-prescription, over-the-counter medicines (except insulin)
HSA Withdrawal Tax Hike (Page 1998/Sec. 9004/$1.3 bil): Increases additional tax on non-medical early withdrawals from an HSA from 10 to 20 percent, disadvantaging them relative to IRAs and other tax-advantaged accounts, which remain at 10 percent.
FSA Cap (Page 1999/Sec. 9005/$14.6 bil): Imposes cap on FSAs of $2500 (now unlimited).
Corporate 1099-MISC Information Reporting (Page 1999/Sec. 9006/$17.1 bil): Requires businesses to send 1099-MISC information tax forms to corporations (currently limited to individuals), a huge compliance burden for small employers
Excise Tax on Charitable Hospitals (page 2001/Sec. 9007/Min$): $50,000 per hospital if they fail to meet new "community health assessment needs," "financial assistance," and "billing and collection" rules set by HHS.
Tax on Innovator Drug Companies (Page 2010/Sec. 9008/ $22.2 bil): $2.3 billion annual tax on the industry imposed relative to share of sales made that year.
Tax of Medical Device Manufacturers (Page 2020/Sec. 9009/$19.3 bil): $2 billion annual tax on the industry imposed relative to shares of sales made that year. Exempts items retailing for <$100.
Tax on Health Insurers (Page 2026/Sec. 9010/$60.4 bil): $6.7 billion annual tax on the industry imposed relative to health insurance premiums collected that year.
Eliminate tax deduction for employer-provided retirement Rx drug coverage in coordination with Medicare Part D (Page 2034/Sec. 9012/$5.4 bil)
Raise "Haircut" for Medical Itemized Deduction from 7.5% to 10% of AGI (Page 2034/Sec. 9013/$15.2 bil) : Waived for 65+ taxpayers in 2013-2016 only
$500,000 Annual Executive Compensation Limit for Health Insurance Executives (Page 2035/Sec. 9014/$0.6 bil)
Hike in Medicare Payroll Tax (Page 2040/Sec. 9015/$53.8 bil): Current law and changes:
Self-Employment Net Income
Current Law and New Rate on First $200,000 ($250,000 MFJ)
New Rate on Amount Which Exceeds $200,000 ($250,000 MFJ)
The 0.5% new rate addition is not deductible for the self-employment tax adjustment.
Blue Cross/Blue Shield Tax Hike (Page 2044/Sec. 9016/$0.4 bil): The special tax deduction in current law for Blue Cross/Blue Shield companies would only be allowed if 85 percent or more of premium revenues are spent on clinical services
Tax on Cosmetic Medical Procedures (Page 2045/Sec. 9017/$5.8 bil): New 5% excise tax on elective cosmetic surgery to be paid by the surgery patient.