Monday, January 30, 2012


If not now, when? A terrible burden has been laid upon Democrats. They should be uneasy now that they wear the crown of governance symbolizing their duty to protect religious freedom guaranteed in our Constitution. Many years ago the Democrats of Main Street surrendered the National Democratic Party to the elites espousing liberalism and socialism. Today’s Main Street Democrats are merely sheep in the elites’ flock. It is the fate of all sheep someday to be led to the slaughter. Look out!
I appeal to Main Street Democrats to restore the nation. Independents and Republicans are as nothing to the elitist Obama administration which has moved to ruling by Executive Order and Decree instead of legislation. Only Main Street Democrats have any chance to stop the stripping away of civil rights and Constitutional guarantees from Americans.
It was no accident that on January 20th Obama issued a new diktat compelling religious institutions to submit to rules that grossly violate their basic principles and beliefs. All religious institutions, read Catholic and Evangelical, must bow to the Federal Government and make birth control, abortion pills, contraception and sterilization available, at no cost, to all employees through their medical plans. Dogma that opposes these actions, be damned. To the Obama administration, separation of church and state works in only one direction. Churches are not to influence the state or public policy, no matter what their beliefs, but the state can influence, ‘nudge’ in the words of Obama’s advisor, Cass Sunstein, the churches to do the bidding of the government.
It surely was no coincidence that Obama had Kathleen Sebelius, his Heath and Human Services Secretary, issue this order only 2 days before the massive Right to Life Rally held in Washington on January 22. In the old days, we called this behavior ‘a poke in the eye’ or ‘the finger.’ It was also timed to rebuke the Supreme Court for ruling unanimously earlier in the week, in Hosanna-Tabot, that religious institutions have the right to control their own affairs. In our nation now ruled by Executive Order, the Supreme Court needed to be put in its place.
America has moved from being people “... endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights...”as stated in the Declaration of Independence, and a Congress that “shall make no law prohibiting the free exercise thereof ( religion)” in the 1st Amendment to the Constitution, to being ordered by a simple Presidential diktat. Obama gives church institutions a year to implement his diktat not so they can have input to the government’s ruling, but so that they have time to bring their dogma and beliefs into agreement with his rule. “This is part of a pattern in the United States that has degenerated from the recognition of religion as good and salutary in our society to religion being subjected to punitive discrimination." Thus reads a statement signed by Bishops Kevin J. Farrell of Dallas and Kevin W. Vann of Fort Worth and Dallas.
Who is to blame? We are. The gradual surrender of ‘inalienable rights’ to the government has taken many years. There is no escaping the fact that every American has been complicit in this surrender. As Americans, we have watched the government slowly convert local charitable programs to government bureaucratic fiefdoms. Local governments have surrendered to federal funding for most local projects. Social and charitable organizations are addicted to federal grants. Main Street Democrats have bowed to their elite, liberal brethren allowing them to firmly seize control of the Democratic party.
Churches have acquiesced to government funding of social programs as if no strings were attached. For years Bishops have been called ‘Democrats in cassocks’ for getting on the ‘social justice’ bandwagon to solve every inequity through government even though it means they fudge a little on their beliefs. Now in a shock of clarity, Bishop David A. Zubik of Pittsburgh, writes a column titled "To Hell With You," expressing dismay at Obama’s attitude toward Catholics even after all the bishops had done to appease Obama and liberalism.
Since Independents, Republicans, Catholics, the Tea Party, churches, local governments and social groups have been marginalized by the Obama administration, we must call upon Main Street Democrats to start at the local level and reassert the founding principles of our American Republic, to take back their party from the elites of liberalism. Am I calling for the revolt of the sheep? Well we know for sure that leadership will not come from the top.
Every right taken away will take generations to restore. January 20th, the Obama administration took away the right of Catholics to religious freedom. Evangelical rights are eroding. So far, mainline Protestants still have rights, Jews have rights, Muslims have rights, Scientologists have rights and Atheists have rights, but surely, you say, the government would never extinguish these rights. Really? When the last ‘right’ is gone, who will turn out the light on our Constitution? Think on what Rev. Niemoller wrote: “ First they came for the Communists, and I didn't speak out because I wasn't a Communist. Then they came for the trade unionists, and I didn't speak out because I wasn't a trade unionist. Then they came for the Jews, and I didn't speak out because I wasn't a Jew. Then they came for the Catholics, and I didn't speak out because I was Protestant. Then they came for me and there was no one left to speak out for me.”
Main Street Democrats, as followers, as sheep, you have a terrible burden. If not a revolt now, when?

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Obama's Socialist Dream of Heaven on Earth

"We're going to keep on praising together. I am confident that we can create a Kingdom right here on Earth."
Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.) in 2008reaching for the stars while addressing an evangelical congregation in South Carolina.

2.Gen. Beauregard: “If certain minds cannot understand the difference between patriotism, the highest civic virtue, and office-seeking, the lowest civic occupation, I pity them from the bottom of my heart.”

3.Having now read Pres. Obama’s 2012 State of the Union address (I cannot tolerate watching the kitschy display that is the actual delivery of a State of the Union address), I can say only that Thomas Babington Macaulay’s long-ago description of Robert Southey applies perfectly to Barack Obama:
“He conceives that the business of the magistrate is not merely to see that the persons and property of the people are secure from attack, but that he ought to be a jack-of-all-trades, architect, engineer, schoolmaster, merchant, theologian, a Lady Bountiful in every parish, a Paul Pry in every house, spying, eavesdropping, relieving, admonishing, spending our money for us. His principle is, if we understand it rightly, that no man can do anything so well for himself as his rulers, be they who they may, can do it for him, and that a government approaches nearer and nearer to perfection in proportion as it interferes more and more with the habits and notions of individuals.”*
Donald J. Boudreaux

4.I’m not in the least surprised by Mr. Obama’s xenophobia-laced trade-policy pronouncements: the President thinks that such will win him votes by energizing his economically uninformed “Progressive” base while also pleasing a good number of conservatives. Case closed.)

5.The government has deceived the American people for years, making them think that their payroll tax “contributions” are set aside for their future benefit. But it’s not true. So let’s just admit it’s a welfare program. And if it’s a welfare program, why do rich people get benefits? Means-testing Social Security and Medicare would allow much lower tax rates in the future and be a more honest way to structure government-financed retirement and health plans.

Why are people surprised when polititians lie?

Tuesday, January 24, 2012


This week’s EconTalk is David Rose talking about his book, The Moral Foundations of Economic Behavior. David asks the question: "What moral values would best serve a group of people who want to be able to trust strangers not to act opportunistically which would in turn allow people to specialize, trade with strangers and so on."

Judea/Christian morals are drawn from Commandments of the Almighty and the rules of His natural world. Only from this view is there moral right and wrong. The phony man-made morals of the Enlightenment have no basis in anything other than might makes right.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Obama Does Not Understand "Jobs"

“Our goal should never be to ‘create jobs’. Our goal should be to enable people to contribute something valued by other people. The value is the point, not the work.”

Reporting on Apple’s alleged failure to create adequate numbers of jobs in America, you quote Betsey Stevenson, until recently former chief economist at the Labor Department, lamenting that “Companies once felt an obligation to support American workers, even when it wasn’t the best financial choice. That’s disappeared. Profits and efficiency have trumped generosity” (“How U.S. Lost Out on iPhone Work,” Jan. 22).
Forget Dr. Stevenson’s dubious history. I’m curious to know if your reporters, in response, asked her the following sorts of questions: “Is your home, Dr. Stevenson, without an automatic washer and dryer so that you can better exercise your generosity by hiring washerwomen to launder your family’s clothes by hand? When you cut your finger or get a stuffy nose, do you treat these ailments with inexpensive over-the-counter medications, or do you instead spend the extra money required to visit your physician in order to generously increase the demand for health-care workers? And when a light bulb in your home burns out, do you avoid the ‘best financial choice’ of changing it yourself by generously hiring a handyman to change it for you?”
Unless Dr. Stevenson can answer honestly that she often spends her own money for no reason other than to ‘create jobs’ for strangers, she has no business complaining about other people behaving exactly as she does.
Donald J. Boudreaux
Professor of Economics
George Mason University
Fairfax, VA 22030

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Two Coffees:

Having arrived at the Gates of Heaven, Barack Obama meets a man with a beard. ‘Are you Mohammed?’ he asks.

‘No my son, I am St. Peter; Mohammed is higher up.’ Peter then points to a ladder that rises into the clouds.

Delighted that Mohammed should be higher than St. Peter, Obama climbs the ladder in great strides, climbs up through the clouds and comes into a room where he meets other bearded man.

He asks again, ‘Are you Mohammed?’

‘Why no he answers, I am Moses; Mohammed is higher still .’

Exhausted, but with a heart full of joy he climbs the ladder yet again, he discovers a larger room where he meets an angelic looking man with a beard. Full of hope, he asks again, ‘Are you Mohammed?’

‘No, I am Jesus, the Christ…you will find Mohammed higher up. ‘

Mohammed higher than Jesus! Man, oh man! Obama can hardly contain his delight
and climbs and climbs ever higher.

Once again, he reaches an even larger room where he meets this truly magnificent looking man with a silver white beard and once again repeats his question, “Are you Moammed?” he gasps as he is by now, totally out of breath from all his climbing.
‘No, my son…. I am Almighty God, the Alpha and the Omega, but you look exhausted. Would you like a cup of coffee?”

Obama says, Yes please. As God looks behind him, he claps his hands and yells out:

“Hey Mohammed – two coffees!”

Keep your trust in God… your president is an idiot…

Monday, January 16, 2012

Government is incapable by its nature to treat causes and only treats symptoms.

L. Albert Hahn’s 1949 collection The Economics of Illusion; specifically, it’s from the final paragraph of that collection’s opening essay, “Cycles in Monetary Theory and Policy”:
As far as government interference itself is concerned, one should never forget that serious economic disturbances are the consequences of basic maladjustments. The effect of correcting or not correcting such maladjustments is infinitely greater than any artificial creation of demand by government in an economy that, in most sectors, is still free. Therefore an economic policy that concentrates on artificially filling up an investment or spending gap rather than on fostering adjustments – and thus creating demand in a natural way – is doomed to fail in any severe crisis.

The lamentable prescription is to treat the consequence – remedy the pain directly – treat the symptom. Such symptom-salving has obvious political advantages, chiefly because most people untutored in economics are naturally mercantilists and vulgar Keynesians: their economics is based upon that which is only most obvious – and inadequate demand is a most obvious source of problems for businesses and workers. So the underlying, deeper cause goes unnoticed and, hence, untreated – even, likely, worsened by the facile policy of treating only the symptom of inadequate demand by directly pumping up “aggregate demand.”

As F.A. Hayek observed in The Fatal Conceit: “The curious task of economics is to demonstrate to men how little they really know about what they imagine they can design.”
Does Self Defense Violate the Rights of the Attacker?

A Drip of Sanity Brings a Flood Official Insanity. Ireland voted to allow homeowners the right of self defense against intruders. But the ‘official nannies’ are aghast: “The Irish Council for Civil Liberties, however, is highly critical of the change in the law but Justice Minister Alax Shatter has denied it is a ‘license to kill’.”

Council director Mark Kelly has labeled the new law “lax” on home defense and is highly critical of the legislation.

Kelly said: “These are lax proposals, which contain insufficiently robust legal safeguards to protect the right to life of householders or intruders.“

Yes! Intruders are people too! We must protect the sanctity of all human life!

“The law encourages people to use lethal force to defend their property and is at odds with Article 2 (right to life) of the European Convention on Human Rights which obliges the state to ensure that lethal force can only be used if absolutely necessary and strictly proportionate in all the circumstances.”

Must the ‘nannies’ of the world leave normal people at the mercy of world thuggery!

Sunday, January 15, 2012


Obama Goes On Attack Against Congress. “When Congress refuses to act and as a result hurts our economy and puts people at risk, I have an obligation as president to do what I can without them.” But if I were a Congressional Democrat, I’d be unhappy. Sure, he’s mostly slagging Republicans. But . . . .

Leadership: A spokesman says the president "can't wait for Congress to act" and promised that he's "going to take action." This is the president who was "ready to rule" in 2008. Is he an elected chief executive or an emperor?

In November 2008, shortly after Barack Obama was elected president, Valerie Jarrett, co-chair of his transition team, appeared on "Meet the Press." She told host Tom Brokaw that "Obama is prepared to really take power and begin to rule day one."

Shouldn't someone who had reached the political heights that Jarrett had reached know that kings rule but presidents are elected to serve and are accountable to Congress, the courts and the voters?
You got it wrong. Obama is not surrendering. He is winning the hearts and minds of the like-minded rabid anti-American trash.
Commonplace Misperceptions about the way Economies work

The world is amply stocked, even without Nobel laureate economists joining them, with people who mistakenly believe that the chief problem that economies must solve is finding work for people. But what people want above all (at least from the economy) is not work per se, but consumption goods – a large and growing selection of ample consumption goods. Jobs are only a means to that end. And ample and growing supplies of consumption goods are impossible without creative destruction and efforts to produce, whenever possible, more efficiently. Labor-saving technologies and modes of production enhance wealth; without such things we’d still all be living, dirt poor, on farms.

As F.A. Hayek observed in The Fatal Conceit: “The curious task of economics is to demonstrate to men how little they really know about what they imagine they can design.”

Lloyd Daub writes: “Detroit is North Korea … with the Unions holding the same pride of place as the North Korean Army—keep them happy and they keep the kleptocracy in power. No matter who else starves.”
WALTER RUSSELL MEAD: Detroit just looking worse and worse. “Rampant incompetence, administrative chaos and clueless mismanagement have so disrupted the ruined city’s faltering attempts to maintain some kind of early childhood education program that the Obama administration is threatening to close down all federal funding for early education in the once-bustling metropolis. The city is too incompetent to spend money. . . . It is hard to see how a city recovers when things have fallen this far. Detroit’s voters do not seem interested in good governance, either unwilling or unable to penalize incompetence at the polls; the political class spouts blue liberal slogans but appears to have the compassion and generosity of a pack of velociraptors; the city’s core institutions have been so corroded and degraded after decades of decline that there is little hope for improvement anytime soon. The status quo cannot stand.”

Saturday, January 14, 2012


Here’s what transpired on the Department of Energy/Solyndra end:

Solyndra’s chief executive warned the Energy Department on Oct. 25, 2010, that he intended to announce worker layoffs Oct. 28. He said he was spurred by numerous calls from reporters and potential investors about rumors the firm was in financial trouble and was planning to lay off workers and close one of its two plants.

But in an Oct. 30, 2010, e-mail, advisers to Solyndra’s primary investor, Argonaut Equity, explain that the Energy Department had strongly urged the company to put off the layoff announcement until Nov. 3. The midterm elections were held Nov. 2, and led to Republicans taking control of the U.S. House of Representatives.

“DOE continues to be cooperative and have indicated that they will fund the November draw on our loan (app. $40 million) but have not committed to December yet,” a Solyndra investor adviser wrote Oct. 30. “They did push very hard for us to hold our announcement of the consolidation to employees and vendors to Nov. 3rd – oddly they didn’t give a reason for that date.”

Let’s straighten out that timeline and connect a couple of dots, shall we?

10/25/2010 — Solyndra CEO writes to the DoE that he will announce worker layoffs on 10/28.
10/27/2010 — In the White House, climate change adviser Zichal sent out an e-mail to Obama adviser Browner and several other officials warning of a layoff announcement in very specific terms — “200 of their 1200 workers” — and added, “No es bueno,” which is Spanish for “not good.”
10/28/2010 — No announcement comes forth from Solyndra on layoffs.
10/30/2010 — Solyndra investor explains that the DoE “push[ed] very hard” for a delay on the announcement until November 3rd, the day after the election, even remarking that the DoE “oddly they didn’t give a reason for that date.”
One does not have to be Sherlock Holmes to see the game afoot in this sequence. The DoE alerted the White House to the “no es bueno” situation at Solyndra, which would have undermined Democratic arguments that their spending spree in 2009 created real jobs rather than unbearable risk for borrowed taxpayer funds. After the White House got alerted to the situation, suddenly the Solyndra announcement never takes place, and two days later the primary investor has to explain internally that the DoE pressured them to delay the announcement.

Something smells very badly. It’s clear that the Obama administration at some level used taxpayer funds as leverage to manipulate a private enterprise for purely electoral benefit to the President, and it seems clear that the direction to do this came from the White House. I’ll bet we have a few more Friday night document dumps to go in this scandal.

Monday, January 09, 2012

THE TEA PARTY THE WHITE HOUSE COULDN’T RESIST: White House threw secret ‘Alice in Wonderland’ bash during recession.

Sort of reminds me of Marie Antoinette's remark about the poor "Let them eat cake". The Obama's 'party on' while the nation suffers.

A White House “Alice in Wonderland” costume ball — put on by Johnny Depp and Hollywood director Tim Burton — proved to be a Mad-as-a-Hatter idea that was never made public for fear of a political backlash during hard economic times, according to a new tell-all.

“The Obamas,” by New York Times correspondent Jodi Kantor, tells of the first Halloween party the first couple feted at the White House in 2009. It was so over the top that “Star Wars” creator George Lucas sent the original Chewbacca to mingle with invited guests.

The book reveals how any official announcement of the glittering affair — coming at a time when Tea Party activists and voters furious over the lagging economy, 10-percent unemployment rate, bank bailouts and Obama’s health-care plan were staging protests — quickly vanished down the rabbit hole.

“White House officials were so nervous about how a splashy, Hollywood-esque party would look to jobless Americans — or their representatives in Congress, who would soon vote on health care — that the event was not discussed publicly and Burton’s and Depp’s contributions went unacknowledged,” the book says.

However, the White House made certain that more humble Halloween festivities earlier that day — for thousands of Washington-area schoolkids — were well reported by the press corps.

The complicit press corps, that is.

“Some people may also choose to use solar panels to run their air conditioner on a hot day. Everyone should be free to use solar, but not at the expense of taxpayers or other consumers.
But for generating continuous mains power, solar is a green toy. In clear sunny weather, the electricity generated from solar panels varies from zero at midnight to a modest maximum at midday, providing there is no dust on the panel. On a cloudy day, output varies from negligible to none. In all cases complete reliable backup generation is required.

Solar power is a high cost way of generating an intermittent and variable supply of electricity from a very dilute source while sterilising a large area of land.
The solar industry is only efficient at one thing - extracting unearned profits from tax payers and other electricity consumers.

As the growing global austerity starts to bite, all such frippery will evaporate.
The sagging market for solar panels is merely heralding that emerging reality.”

Unfortunately, the last two sentences are totally wrong. The political class and environmental elitists know as ‘cash cow’ when they see it. They will demand more and bigger subsidies for the solar lunacy. Remember ‘they’ control the power.

Sunday, January 08, 2012


From George Will in January 2012:
People are less dissatisfied by what they lack than by what others have. And when government engages in redistribution in order to maximize the happiness of citizens who become more envious as they become more comfortable, government becomes increasingly frenzied and futile."

“Liberals have a rendezvous with regret. Their largest achievement is today’s redistributionist government. But such government is inherently regressive: It tends to distribute power and money to the strong, including itself.”

Could anything better describe the Obama, Liberal and Socialist agenda?

Thursday, January 05, 2012

From Café Hayek by Don Boudreaux

Especially in light of the renewed efforts to regulate the terms that credit-card issuers are allowed to offer to borrowers, Jeremy Bentham's short little classic Defence of Usury is well worth reading. Below is a germane passage. Writing of a potential borrower whose circumstances put him in desperate need of money, Bentham says
A man is in one of these situations, suppose, in which it would be for his advantage to borrow. But his circumstances are such, that it would not be worth any body's while to lend him, at the highest rate which it is proposed the law should allow; in short, he cannot get it at that rate. If he thought he could get it at that rate, most surely he would not give a higher: he may be trusted for that: for by the supposition he has nothing defective in his understanding. But the fact is, he cannot get it at that lower rate. At a higher rate, however, he could get it: and at that rate, though higher, it would be worth his while to get it: so he judges, who has nothing to hinder him from judging right; who has every motive and every means for forming a right judgment; who has every motive and every means for informing himself of the circumstances, upon which rectitude of judgment, in the case in question, depends. The legislator, who knows nothing, nor can know any thing, of any one of all these circumstances, who knows nothing at all about the matter, comes and says to him— It signifies nothing; you shall not have the money: for it would be doing you a mischief to let you borrow it upon such terms. —And this out of prudence and loving-kindness —There may be worse cruelty: but can there be greater folly?
The folly of those who persist, as is supposed, without reason, in not taking advice, has been much expatiated upon. But the folly of those who persist, without reason, in forcing their advice upon others, has been but little dwelt upon, though it is, perhaps, the more frequent, and the more flagrant of the two. It is not often that one man is a better judge for another, than that other is for himself, even in cases where the adviser will take the trouble to make himself master of as many of the materials for judging, as are within the reach of the person to be advised. But the legislator is not, can not be, in the possession of any one of these materials.—What private, can be equal to such public folly?

Tuesday, January 03, 2012

Obamavillians or Occupy Wall Street Nuts

The Occupy Wall Street layaboutS may be truly called Obamavillians, a term coined by James Taranto, since they are the creation of the president’s loony left and encouraged by him and congressional democratic leaders in their antics and irrationality.

As they heckled a Romney Rally in Iowa, Romney allows the back and forth to continue for a bit until a man in the crowd comes up with the one line to which the occupiers had no response at all: “Go to work!”. That man said it all and it ought to be repeated every time Obamavillians chant their nonsense.

The occupiers wanted to create a disturbance, but they ended up unifying the audience and making their target look good. That’s bad stagecraft on their part.

A few minutes later, a camera crew interviewed the lead occupier outside Competitive Edge’s building. He was exactly what you would expect: Young, unkempt, evidently unaccomplished. He told the interviewers that he and his friends were there to get their point of view across to contradict Romney’s “support for all these wars.”

The occupiers’ point of view was obvious enough tonight. They’re children, unable to comprehend or accept that not everyone agrees with them. They go for the heckler’s veto, trying to embarrass and shout down opposition. They tried to disrupt the Romney campaign’s carefully planned stagecraft. But at this event, they were owned by an anonymous man in the crowd.

In another place Peter Wehner observes: Obama Enters The Twilight Zone. “We are now reaching the point in which the president is running a truly post-modern campaign, in which there is no objective truth but simply narrative. Obama’s campaign isn’t simply distorting the facts; it is inverting them. This kind of thing isn’t unusual to find in the academy. But to see a president and his campaign so thoroughly deconstruct truth in order to maintain power is quite rare. The sheer audacity of Obama’s cynicism is a wonder of the modern world.”

Monday, January 02, 2012


"Are you better off today than you were $4 trillion ago?" Rick Perry asked, a grin of satisfaction creasing his face. Within hours a bumper sticker with the quote was on sale on; in what other time or place could an entrepreneur spring into action so quickly and produce a product and have it for sale.

From page 190 of the 1955 edition of the Stuart Gilbert translation of Alexis de Tocqueville’s masterpiece The Old Regime and the French Revolution:
Thus every small holder had learned by personal experience how little heed was given to the rights of individuals when it was in the public interest to ride roughshod over them – a lesson he took care to keep in mind when it was a question of applying it to others for his own benefit.

… is from pages 83-84 of the 1973 reissue of Albert Jay Nock’s little 1935 masterpiece, Our Enemy, the State; Nock distinguished “social power” – voluntary choices and actions, such as occur in markets and in mutual-aid societies – from “state power”:
It is a curious anomaly. State power has an unbroken record of inability to do anything efficiently, economically, disinterestedly or honestly; yet when the slightest dissatisfaction arises over any exercise of social power, the aid of the agent least qualified to give aid is immediately called for. Does social power mismanage banking-practice in this-or-that special instance — then let the State, which never has shown itself able to keep its own finances from sinking promptly into the slough of misfeasance, wastefulness and corruption, intervene to “supervise” or “regulate” the whole body of banking-practice, or even take it over entire.

DAILY MAIL Sadly, there seems little point in looking across the Atlantic for inspiration. In 1932, President Herbert Hoover, beleaguered by rising unemployment and tumbling ratings, flailed and floundered towards election defeat.
Today, Barack Obama cuts a similarly impotent, indecisive and isolationist figure. The difference is that in 1932, one of the greatest statesmen of the century, the Democratic politician Franklin D. Roosevelt, was waiting in the wings.
Today, American voters looking for alternatives are confronted only with a bizarre gaggle of has-beens, inadequates and weirdos, otherwise known as the Republican presidential field. And to anybody who cares about the future of the Western world, the prospect of President Ron Paul or President Newt Gingrich is frankly spine-chilling

Sunday, January 01, 2012

Dim Bulbs

Crony capitalism and the 100 watt bulb.
As Politico reported, "big companies like General Electric, Philips and Osram Sylvania (are) fuming." Allegedly these companies are mad because they invested lots of money getting ready for the new rules.

Fact is, they were pushing for the ban all along.

In 2007, Philips urged an incandescent ban as a way to force the market toward high-efficiency bulbs, complaining that without such laws, "purchase price and functional performance often take precedence over environmental concern."

That same year, the National Electrical Manufacturers Association, which represents companies making 95% of bulbs sold in the U.S., told a Senate panel that a ban was needed "to further educate consumers on the benefits of energy-efficient products."

You can believe if you want these companies only had Mother Earth in mind with this ban. But more likely they saw it as a chance to fatten their bottom lines. Who wouldn't jump at the chance to outlaw a low-margin, 60-cent product when you're trying to hawk a high-margin $3 alternative?

This would hardly be the first time big business teamed up with big government to enhance profits through competition-crushing regulations. Timothy Carney's book, "The Big Ripoff," detailed many cases where businesses "profit from big government policies that rip off consumers."