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Big Tech’s coming choice, quit calling for Ukraine’s surrender and other commentary

China desk: Big Tech’s Coming Choice
“The national and cyber security communities have warned” Big Tech it will have to choose between US government contracts and the Chinese market, notes Paul Rosenzweig at The Hill. “Now, a revision to China’s state secrets law” might “force the issue”: It “will require business entities in China to identify and disclose to the government work secrets,’” in other words “proprietary information that could be used to target the U.S. government or impact the data security of Americans writ large.” Washington must “consider barring technology companies that comply with the new rule from pursuing new government contracts.” That would “ensure the technology partners the U.S. government chooses share its national security priorities, helping make the tools it relies on safer and more secure.”
Conservative: Quit Calling for Ukraine’s Surrender
Pope Francis’ call for Ukraine to embrace “the courage of the white flag” and other demands for Kyiv to talk peace with Russia add up to demands for surrender, argues National Review’s Noah Rothman. These critics “insist they have Ukrainians’ best interests in mind” and suggest “Kyiv’s continued resistance is fatal hubris,” but they’re living in a “happy fiction,” as the Kremlin’s ruinous terms for ending the war include “the dissolution of the Ukrainian government” and “absorption of its ‘entire territory’ into” Russia. And the critics’ “desire for peace is rejected by the Russians,” while their “concern for Ukraine doesn’t seem to be shared by Ukrainians,” who keep fighting.
Watchdog: Legislature’s Risky Medicaid Scheme
State lawmakers are pushing a new $4 billion tax, mostly on Medicaid Managed Care plans, to be used “to increase Medicaid spending,” reports the Empire Center’s Bill Hammond. This aims to exploit rules where Washington “roughly” matches each dollar the state spends on Medicaid, so that Albany could use the new tax revenue to repay the plans $8 billion, leaving them with “a net increase of $4 billion, which they’d pass along in the form of higher fees” for providers. Yet such schemes are “widely considered” an “abuse,” and when the feds crack down the trick would leave a “multi-billion-dollar hole” in the budget that would “pressure” lawmakers to impose an equal tax “on non-Medicaid enrollees, adding to the already high cost of health insurance in New York.”
Eye on NY: Cuomo’s Convenient Amnesia
“Is Andrew Cuomo suffering from long Covid?” snark Wall Street Journal editors after the ex-gov called for “suspending” the city’s $15 congestion tax. In 2019, he championed the scheme but now laments the surcharge’s impact amid “the migrant crisis, crime, homelessness, quality of life and taxes.” But who, the editors ask, is “to blame for most of these problems?” Cuomo reneged on his 2010 campaign “promise to let the state’s millionaire’s tax lapse,” instead extending it for years. He vowed in 2020 “he wouldn’t let then mayor Bill de Blasio lock down the city,” but then he “locked down the state.” And he signed no-bail into law in 2019, handing “criminals a get-out-of-jail free card.” Rumor says Cuomo may run for mayor, but it’s a wonder “he thinks any New Yorker would put him in power again.”
Libertarian: California’s High-Speed Boondoggle
“It should be obvious by now that the original low-ball estimates” for the high-speed rail line from San Francisco to Los Angeles “were meant to convince voters and state lawmakers to buy into the idea, so the sunk-cost fallacy could finish the job,” gripes Reason’s Eric Boehm. In 2008, “the price tag was an estimated $33 billion,” but “Tuesday, the project’s CEO told state lawmakers in Sacramento that another $100 billion” is probably “needed to finish the project,” and “the train still isn’t close to operating. Magical thinking caused politicians and the media to back this boondoggle in the first place, and more than 15 years later, incredibly, the spell still hasn’t broken.” Fact is, “lawmakers should pull the plug now.”
— Compiled by The Post Editorial Board

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