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PRESIDENT TRUMP'S PLAN TO SLASH FOREIGN AID AND FUNDING FOR UN SPARKS DEBATE
Steve Forbes: Obviously, not, David. The U.N. have become a welfare agency for diplomats, dictators and human rights abusers and the money goes to waste. They say they fight disease. If you want to fight disease, go to something like the gates foundation. In terms of economic development, builds bureaucracies. This is a badly needed house cleaning, it's just the beginning.
Bruce Japsen: Listen, I'm all for trimming the fat, but when you have this White House that's engaged in its own bracket of March Madness here, you're going to have to clone people like Nikki Haley to calm the diplomatic blunders of the president who keeps bringing up crazy surveillance allegations and ticking off the British and also, they're not talking with the same voice here, you have Rex Tillerson saying you want to cut diplomats, which is fine, but meanwhile, the Defense Department wants to increase defense, I don't know if this will pass
John Tamny: Yeah, I don't think they cut enough. In my perfect world, what they would have done, wouldn't have appointed anyone to the U.N., but we've got to remember the protecting the free world comes at a major expense to our safety and the health of the U.S. economy. These dollars would otherwise fund good idea and they're not, they're funding awfulness.
Sabrina Schaeffer: That's right, David. I think there's a big difference between the U.N., a perpetually corrupt organization and the State Department at home. For the U.N., The United States is the number one supporter. We provide about a quarter of the funding, both general operating support, as well as the peace keeping efforts. So, while I think Ambassador Haley made a good point it's not going to be a flash and burn approach, there's room for improvement, so to speak, and the U.N. needs to change its tune if they want the United States.
Elizabeth MacDonald: The U.N. Development Fund is routinely commandeered and taken by regimes, North Korea, Zimbabwe, you name it. About 128 countries there, they give only less than 1 percent of the budget and they get to vote on the budget and how it's spent. They have no skin in the game. Major human rights abusers, no skin in the game and why do they care.
Mike Ozanian: David, when you have taxpayers at your disposal, your budget can be whatever you want it to be or your mission can be whatever you want it to be. As we see with many government programs, they continue to grow. My biggest concern is what the countries contribute, when you need the U.N. the most, it fails. There is a genocide going on in South Sudan, the U.N. has done nothing. There's one against Christians and U.N. doing nothing.
OBAMACARE ARCHITECT JONATHAN GRUVER CALLS GOP HEALTHCARE BILL 'A SCAM'
Steve Forbes: Yeah, it gives hypocrisy a bad name for a guy like that to criticize. Whatever the flaws, it's vast improvement over ObamaCare, gets rid of the individual mandate, and employer mandate, hundreds of billions in taxes. Obamacare is collapsing, it hurt people and made it more expensive, $12,000 deductibles, hello, Mr. Gruber, did you pay $12,000 in deductibles before you came along?
Bruce Japsen: Certainly there are issues that need to be taken care with the individual market, but in the TrumpCare, RyanCare plan, they are still creating 100 billion dollar fund to dole out among the insurance companies and there's still an individual mandate in the form of a surcharge which wouldn't go back to the government, it would go to the insurance companies that would charge not $695, but at least $1500 if you had a $400 a month plan.
Elizabeth MacDonald: That has not changed. To your point, this is Jonathan Gruber, right? The stupidity of the American voter led us to hide ObamaCare's true costs, that's what he's saying. I think he hasn't changed. He's saying that stupidity of the American voter is making me hide the true cost savings that could happen under this plan. Remember, his thinking was, it's really, really critical to hide things from people to get things passed. He hasn't changed.
Elizabeth MacDonald: You know, I kind of like it, I hear Sabrina says. And when you looked at the bronze plan, you looked at catastrophic, chaos insurance. The tax credits, I think Sabrina is right, don't let the purpose be the enemy of the food. Earned income tax credit is improper and somewhat fraudulent. A lot of money goes out the door. I hear what conservatives are saying, tax credits immediate money out the door and abused tax credits, a lot of fraud there. I think what rand Paul is saying, sounds like the way to go.
Mike Ozanian: I think this Republican plan is a catastrophe. I think we have a once in a lifetime opportunity to make health care insurance what it should be, which is insurance rather than a means of providing health care. There's a back doorway to the individual mandate, still has preexisting conditions, huge subsidies, with tax credits. We're going the wrong way here.
Sabrina Schaeffer: This is the pot calling the kettle black. If I recall, ObamaCare was passed in the middle of the night. I don't think a whole lot of transparency. If we want to talk about transparency, one thing we need in health care is transparency, price transparency so consumers know what they cost and should cost and we do not have that under ObamaCare and that's the direction we ought to be moving in.
NEW FOCUS ON PRESIDENT TRUMP'S PROPOSED EPA BUDGET CUTS AS ENVIROMENTALISTS CRY FOUL
John Tamny: Well, Trump's critics get it exactly backwards. What puts our environment at risk is the lack of economic growth when the economy is not growing we don't care as much about the environment so the paradoxical truth is that if you want to improve the environment, slash the EPA budget and allow the U.S. economy to grow
Bruce Japsen: Welcome, you can't improve the economy of a place like Flint, Michigan, if you don't have clean water to drink, so you have situations in these budgets at EPA, you have great lakes has pollution cleanup programs that are in there. I mean, who is going to take care of that? I mean, if this is going to be cut, that's a bad thing.
Steve Forbes: Well, the fact of the matter is, John is right, first you need the resources to do it, David. But also the EPA wastes a lot of money on fuel standards, on this clean power act, which would put the utilities out of business, gratuitously and in terms of cleaning up water, the funds are there to do it, specific programs, but the EPA has gone way, way beyond that. You could cut that agency in half and we'd have a cleaner environment.
Elizabeth MacDonald: Some of the cuts bring the EPA and other agencies back to where they were ten years ago. I agree with Steve, you know, we don't want pollution; we want clean water, but let's get rid of the costly circus plate spinning acts like biofuels and solar and wind and let the market figure that out.
Mike Ozanian: And Trump is absolutely right. One of the things the fuel standards have done, David, they've caused auto companies to make much lighter cars which make them more dangerous and raise the price. Under Obama, EPA added almost 4,000 of rules, costing the economy $50 billion.
Sabrina Schaeffer: I hope so. The EPA has become an ideological organization which is why it's not effective. To Bruce's point the reason that a place like Flint, Michigan happened. The idea that pouring more money into the EPA would help the people in flint, Michigan would be insane. The poor people are still buying water because they don't trust the government.
Mike Ozanian: HD