Here is the latest College Football Playoff ranking. Who would have thought that the SEC would have only one team in the top 13? (When I mentioned this to a friend who is an SEC fanatic, he said, "We only need but one.") As for the likely Final Four, if Alabama (SEC), Clemson (ACC), and Washington (Pac-12) win their conference championships this weekend, then they will join Ohio State (Big Ten) in the four-team playoff bracket. The Big 12 will almost certainly be shut out for the second time in three years. Guess which big-five conference doesn't have a championship?
We all know sore losers, but President-elect Donald Trump has reflected an unusual form of behavior, that of a sore winner. We try to teach our children to accept defeat with dignity as well as disappointment, and I wonder what they think of our future leader who cannot even bring himself to be gracious in victory.
Santa Monica, Calif.
Note from KBJ: What in the world is this man talking about? It would help if he gave even one example, but perhaps he cannot.
I had another safe and productive month on the bike. I rode 14 times in 30 days, for a total of 480.2 miles. That gives me 5,807 miles for the year, which is only 398.9 miles from my goal of 6,205.9. I'm on track for my best mileage year ever (out of 36). I need only 12 more rides of 34.3 miles (in 31 days) to break the record, which I set in 1990 at the age of 33. Piece o' cake.
Addendum: Conditions today were quite nice. The wind chill was 51º when I left my house and 59º when I returned. The sky was clear blue. The only thing I would change is the wind, which was stiff (11 to 13 miles per hour) out of the northwest. I listened to Rush Limbaugh for about two hours and then switched to music.
Nobody should be allowed to burn the American flag - if they do, there must be consequences - perhaps loss of citizenship or year in jail!
The mainstream media are in a tizzy. "Doesn't Trump realize that the First Amendment of the Constitution protects flag-burning?" In 1989, in Texas v. Johnson, the Supreme Court of the United States ruled that the First Amendment of the Constitution protects flag-burning. Four of the nine justices, including liberal icon John Paul Stevens, dissented. The question is far from closed. Just as the Supreme Court may one day overrule Roe v. Wade (1973), and just as it overruled Bowers v. Hardwick (1986), it may one day overrule Texas v. Johnson (1989). I read Trump as saying two things: first, that the Supreme Court was wrong (as a legal matter) to interpret the Constitution so that it protects flag-burning; and second, that he will appoint justices who will overrule Texas v. Johnson. There is nothing radical or even unusual in what he tweeted.
Addendum 2: Charles Krauthammer just conflated (1) 'x is unconstitutional' and (2) 'x has been ruled unconstitutional by the Supreme Court'. By that logic, the Court could never overrule itself without acting unconstitutionally! What a moron. Krauthammer is a medical doctor with no legal credentials. He literally doesn't know what he's talking about.
Addendum 3: Hillary Clinton supported a ban on flag-burning. This will make leftist heads explode.
Nate Silver thinks it's inaccurate to describe Donald Trump's electoral-college victory as a landslide. The Oxford American Dictionary and Language Guide (1999) defines "landslide" as "an overwhelming majority for one side in an election." Trump received 56.8% of the 538 electoral votes, compared to 43.1% for Hillary Clinton. That's a gap of 13.7%. Is it overwhelming? I don't know. It's impressive, at the very least. I mean, it could have been 270 to 268, or 50.1% to 49.8%. What I find odd is Silver's resort to comparisons with other presidential elections. There is nothing in the concept of a landslide that prevents every election from being a landslide, so why would the fact that Trump's victory ranks 44th of 54 elections have any bearing on whether his victory is a landslide? Silver is grasping at straws. By the way, what was Silver's prediction? Did he foresee the Trump victory? No. Why anyone would pay attention to this dolt is beyond me.
Re “Fierce Critic of Health Care Law Said to Be Pick for Health Dept.” (front page, Nov. 29):
Representative Tom Price, an orthopedic surgeon from Georgia, is expected to be nominated as secretary of health and human services. You note that in the 2009 debate over the Affordable Care Act, Dr. Price called the federal government “stifling and oppressive.”
It is true that the act does establish requirements for health insurers. Among other things, insurers cannot deny coverage to people with pre-existing conditions or charge them more than others, and they may not establish annual or lifetime limits.
While Dr. Price may consider those “stifling and oppressive,” most Americans would choose the Affordable Care Act’s protections over the conditions that existed before the law’s passage.
Dr. Price’s “most frequent objection to the law is that it interferes with the ability of patients and doctors to make medical decisions.” Yet there is absolutely no evidence of that.
We may not agree on policy preferences, but if we could at least begin the policy discussion from a foundation of fact, that would be a small amount of progress.
STEPHEN M. DAVIDSON
The writer is a professor at the Questrom School of Business, Boston University, and the author of “A New Era in U.S. Health Care: Critical Next Steps Under the Affordable Care Act.”
Note from KBJ: ObamaCare was a big lie. Remember Jonathan Gruber? Remember Barack Obama saying that if you like your doctor (or health-care plan), you can keep your doctor (or health-care plan)? Remember Obama saying that your health-care costs would decrease by $2,500? Remember Nancy Pelosi saying that the law had to be passed before we would know what's in it? Say goodbye to ObamaCare, Stephen M. Davidson. Say hello to competitive health-care markets.
Proving once again that economists know the cost of everything and the value of nothing, Tyler Cowen fails to grasp that what President Trump will do is tax imports of American companies that take jobs abroad. This destroys the incentive to take jobs abroad.