Favorite

Short takes 

The Arkansas Lottery Commission last week hired Ernie Passailaigue, director of the South Carolina lottery, to lead the startup of Arkansas's lottery. Why would he want to come to Arkansas?

Easy. He makes about $226,000 in South Carolina. He'll make $324,000 here, plus become eligible to draw more than $100,000 in South Carolina retirement.

After a bumbling start, the commission appears to have made a popular choice, football coach-level salary aside. He's a lottery pro. But he's also a good ol' boy politico, a former Democratic state senator and gubernatorial candidate who charmed Arkansas key legislators during a consulting trip here. Legislators who were anxious to control the Arkansas lottery through appointment of a good ol' boy Arkansan need not fear a new way of doing business. Their calls will be returned; their job recommendees duly considered.

If Passailaigue produces in Arkansas what's been built in South Carolina, no one will care. After seven years, the South Carolina lottery is producing about $60 in profits for every resident in the state. If he matches that in Arkansas, that would mean some $175 million in Arkansas annually for college scholarships, far more than even the optimistic predictions of the Father of the Arkansas Lottery, Lt. Gov. Bill Halter.

 

Should Barack Obama's national health care plan include a so-called public option — a government insurance plan, with its proven lower administrative costs?

You already know what the health insurance industry thinks about that. Wrote The New York Times:

“But critics argue that with low administrative costs and no need to produce profits, a public plan will start with an unfair pricing advantage. They say that if a public plan is allowed to pay doctors and hospitals at levels comparable to Medicare's, which are substantially below commercial insurance rates, it could set premiums so low it would quickly consume the market.”

Wrote Jon Taplin on Talking Points Memo:

“So let me get this straight. It's not fair to have a public option because they don't have to make obscene profits for their shareholders and they can use the leverage of the combined group of Medicare and public option customers to negotiate better fees with doctors, hospitals and drug companies.”

 

Another press clipping worthy of note, this one from Virginia coverage of Mike Huckabee's appearance at a Virginia forum “Rediscovering God in America.”

The Huckster — who refuses to call tornadoes acts of God, who indicated God picked the winner (him) in the Iowa Republican caucuses and who has a long record of claiming divine intervention when the outcome suits — was not happy about President Obama's remarks in the Middle East when the president said one nation should not be exalted over another. From Tribune News Service commentary:

“ ‘The notion that we are just one of many among equals is nonsense,' Huckabee said. The United States is a ‘blessed' nation, he said, calling the American revolutionary defeat of the British empire ‘a miracle from God's hand.'

“The same sort of miracle-working was at hand in the defeat of California's gay marriage amendment, Huckabee suggested — voters ‘did it because some things are right and some things are wrong and they had to make a stand.' ”

The remarks drew wide derision on the web. My favorite was the blogger Pharyngula who said, “Thanks to Mike Huckabee, we now know that God is a) French, and b) Mormon.”

 

Favorite

From the ArkTimes store

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

More by Max Brantley

Readers also liked…

  • Bootstraps for me, not thee

    Mean spirit, hypocrisy and misinformation abound among the rump minority threatening to wreck state government rather than allow passage of the state Medicaid appropriation if it continues to include the Obamacare-funded expansion of health insurance coverage for working poor.
    • Apr 14, 2016
  • Trump: The Obama of 2016?

    Conner Eldridge, the Democratic challenger to incumbent Republican U.S. Sen. John Boozman, launched an assault on Boozman Monday morning rich with irony and opportunity.
    • May 5, 2016
  • Double-talk

    A couple of instances of doublespeak cropped up in Little Rock over the weekend.
    • Jun 29, 2017

Most Shared

  • ASU to reap $3.69 million from estate of Jim and Wanda Lee Vaughn

    Arkansas State University announced today plans for spending an expected $3.69 million gift in the final distribution of the estate of Jim and Wanda Lee Vaughn, who died in 2013 and 2015 respectively.
  • Bad health care bill, again

    Wait! Postpone tax reform and everything else for a while longer because the Senate is going to try to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act one more time before September ends and while it can do it with the votes of only 50 senators.
  • Sex on campus

    Look, the Great Campus Rape Crisis was mainly hype all along. What Vice President Joe Biden described as an epidemic of sexual violence sweeping American college campuses in 2011 was vastly overstated.
  • The inadequate legacy of Brown

    LRSD continues to abdicate its responsibility to educate poor black students.

Latest in Max Brantley

  • Aid politics

    The still-unfolding catastrophe in Houston is, first, a human tragedy. But when politicians try to tell you that a time of enormous human tragedy is not a time to talk about politics, it likely means the politics are embarrassing to them.
    • Aug 31, 2017
  • Save the statues!

    The Democratic Party of Arkansas has called for relocation of Confederate monuments from public places, such as courthouse squares and the Capitol lawn, to history museums or private grounds.
    • Aug 24, 2017
  • Charter secret

    These are hard times for those who believe in traditional public schools, run by democratically elected representatives, open to all on equal terms.
    • Aug 17, 2017
  • More »

Event Calendar

« »

September

S M T W T F S
  1 2
3 4 5 6 7 8 9
10 11 12 13 14 15 16
17 18 19 20 21 22 23
24 25 26 27 28 29 30

Most Viewed

  • Can't afford to gut ACA

    The Affordable Care Act was passed into law with the promise that it would make insurance affordable. Because of bipartisan leadership in Arkansas, we continue to strive to achieve that goal. While rhetoric abounds, it is important to understand the Arkansas experience.
  • Sex on campus

    Look, the Great Campus Rape Crisis was mainly hype all along. What Vice President Joe Biden described as an epidemic of sexual violence sweeping American college campuses in 2011 was vastly overstated.
  • Bad health care bill, again

    Wait! Postpone tax reform and everything else for a while longer because the Senate is going to try to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act one more time before September ends and while it can do it with the votes of only 50 senators.

Most Recent Comments

  • Re: Time for a coalition

    • Shiny, nobody is saying that Hillary isn't entitled to speak. Shit, the more she talks,…

    • on September 21, 2017
  • Re: Bad health care bill, again

    • Its hard to tell what the GOP in Arkansas care about beyond making life worse…

    • on September 20, 2017
  • Re: Time for a coalition

    • I am very glad to see a lot of women running for government positions in…

    • on September 19, 2017
 

© 2017 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation