Tag Archives: health care reform

Dear John…

JohnD from  www.armedrobbery.blogspot.com/ left this comment on my blog the other day..

Interesting post, EKG. It’s nice to see the left has found a new target for its vitriol now that George W. Bush is out of the picture.

“Mass movements can rise and spread without belief in a God, but never without belief in a devil.”

-Eric Hoffer, THE TRUE BELIEVER (1951)

I’m sure Palin-bashing is a pleasant distraction from President Obama’s serial failures. At the very least, hatred for her has provided the faithful with a rallying point.

I ignored his glossing over of President Obama being a target of vitriol himself and  asked him to enumerate Obama’s ‘serial failures’.  His reply was

Failure to get his health care bill and Waxman/Markey passed, even with total Democratic control of Congress; extraordinarily high unemployment rates; a rapidly rising deficit (over and above what was “inherited”); failure to close Guantanamo; take your pick. You can throw in failure to secure the Olympics for Chicago and declining poll numbers too.

as I started to answer him, I realized that these questions and answers deserve more space than the comments section of another blog-post. So I decided to answer them here….

First off, John.. I don’t know you. I don’t know if you are an extreme right winger, I don’t know if you are unbend-able in your opinions, I don’t know if you tow the party line no matter where it takes you. I know you are a friend of Mike’s, but I don’t know if you are as obstinately against looking at things from another perspective as he is or not. Because of this… uncertainty, I am answering with the assumption that you can see a different way of viewing things if shown, or explained.. I’m assuming that you are moderate and not hard-extreme like Mike.

No one likes to be blamed and no one likes their party to be blamed… but no one likes the other party to actually be at fault and share none of the blame and instead pile it all on one side. Of course I am going to place blame with the GOP on many issues, what I will wait to see from your reply to this is if you can see why I would blame them.. maybe not that you agree that they are to blame for alot of it, but maybe..hopefully.. you will admit that they do share, alot, in what is going on today. This is not a ‘well he did it first’ kind of blame. I believe I am laying out a valid argument. I hope to get more than “well you did it first” or the condescending  “LOL” and  “eyerolls” from you in your reply.

Now, on with the blog.

I agree with you John, it is Obama’s failure that Health reform has stagnated. He took it on faith that when Grassley, Snowe and other (R) said they were willing to work on a bi-partisan  solution,they meant it. The rest of us were hearing Grassley call it a ‘death panel’ and how people should fear Obama’s health reform and how he’d never vote for it when he was home on the weekends, but the ‘bubble’ Obama lives in, the same that all Presidents live in, prevented him from hearing that “weekend, rally the base” talk.

I don’t think it was until Lieberman’s extreme, blatant and almost joyful bragging of this ‘partisan ‘obstruction’ that Obama finally wised up. When Lieberman, who just a few years ago ran on his “medcare for 55” policy and was saying everywhere he could that this was the only solution he would support…immediately turned against it because, as he  said,  ‘well since liberals like my plan, I’m against it now’,  I think the President started seeing what he was up against, and what he was up against was illogical and unreasonable opposition. Do you atleast agree that Lieberman’s flip on his own idea and the reason he gave, prove this illogical and unreasonable position?

Even if you don’t think it was illogical or unreasonable, how can you fault President Obama for not getting things done in that kind of atmosphere? We aren’t talking about anything rational that can be explained or even expected. Republicans  and that includes Lieberman(I), were turning on their own plans, things they had campaigned on, the second after President Obama said “Hey, you know what.. your way does sound better so let’s include it”

Rising deficit

On Jan. 7, 2009, two weeks before Obama took office, the CBO reported the deficit was projected to be $1.2 trillion


At least  you gave blame to Bush for the 1.2 trillion of it..

The CBO – which provides the official estimates of the budgetary impact of legislation and events such as wars and recessions – cites the housing market collapse and the financial market turmoil as the main culprits for the shortfall. The federal government has tried to combat the crisis by so far committing $7.2 trillion in investments and loans primarily to financial institutions.

The current recession “will probably be the longest and the deepest since World War II,” the CBO said. The economic deterioration since September, which was the last time CBO made deficit projections, is the biggest contributor to a sharp decline in tax revenue projections. The CBO expects tax revenue in 2009 to fall by $166 billion, or 6.6%, from the previous year’s collection.

That revenue decline, in turn, is the biggest reason for the worsening outlook over the next decade, said Diane Lim Rogers, chief economist at the Concord Coalition, a deficit watchdog group. “The revenue effect is huge.”

and Obama does own his own share.. But we know that he does not ‘own’ the entire  problem. Why is it then that he is saddled with it? Where was this outcry of ‘budget deficits’ going back 3 years and more? How is this President Obama’s doing? He added to what was there yes, but what was the alternative when he stepped into the Oval on day one? You and I along with McCain and so so many others, know that had he won, McCain would have had to do the same exact things Obama did and would have had the same exact deficit today.. This really isn’t an Obama issue.. we all know this but since it’s going on under his watch-he gets the blame..Ok fine, but then we do have to put blame on the person who did create it.  No, this isn’t a “he did it so I can to” this is a ‘I really had nothing to do with all of it, so stop blaming it all on me argument and that is based in reality, not GOP partisan amnesia and fantasy.

When Obama stepped into office he had to deal with 2 unpaid wars, unpaid tax cuts, a wall street collapse, a housing market collapse, an infrastructure that had been neglected for 10 years. The Bush budget deficit projections never included the war price, when Obama put it into his, like it should have been done in the 1st place.. it didn’t help his numbers at all, but atleast it was honest. Unlike those who are supposed to give us ‘fair and balanced’ news..

During the April 3 edition of Fox News’ America’s Newsroom, on-screen text repeatedly falsely claimed that President Obama’s $3.6 trillion fiscal year 2010 budget is “4x bigger than Bush’s costliest plan.” However, President Bush submitted a $3.1 trillion budget for FY 2009. For FY 2008, Bush submitted a $2.9 trillion budget.

**Link to screen shot**

But Obama deserves the blame for all this hiding, collapse and the unpaid bills that all came due just a few short days before he came into office? Which turned out to be more than anyone.. anyone ever expected as more came to light in the coming days after his inauguration? If you truly feel this blames lays on President Obama’s lap, can you explain how you came to that decision?

High unemployment

Yes.. there is.. but you can’t look at 700,000 jobs lost per month when he got there to 11,000 in December 2009 and call that a failure.. and you can’t look at the numbers we were at, are still at now and expect it to change the next day.. or even the next year, not if you’re also not going to allow a larger stimulus bill/recovery act. So Obama was wrong on his optimism those 1st days that the unemployment numbers wouldn’t rise past a certain level, fine. But is he to blame that the numbers rose to that level or just to blame for not realizing just how bad things were a split second after he got there?

Is it the loss of jobs you blame him for or the bad prediction on jobs lost?

Like it, love it, hate it… when no one else is spending any money… the government has to. For the Government to also stop spending money is a catastrophe on a scale that we’ve never seen before. When no one, banks, businesses,people on the street are spending anything.. the government has to. It has to beg,borrow and yes, steal to spend money in order to get people spending money spending again. McCain,Romney,Huckabee.. Reagan.. all would have had no choice, given the exact same circumstance,  but to do the same. Or they would have watched while the country crumbled into oblivion the way Nero did. The ones like Mike, who argue that no, the government shouldn’t have spent a penny, can’t prove that their way would have been the right way or that we’d be any better off. They can’t prove it because there isn’t a time machine to take us back. So to me this argument is one of pure partisan fantasy. It cannot be proven and yet the GOP swears their way was the correct way. What’s worse is, they make 1/2 the country believe in this unprovable feary-tale. This is where the ‘faith’ and almost ‘religious like’ belief comes into play and it is the cornerstone of a lot of the GOP’s argument..

You can’t prove God doesn’t exist therefore he must be real.

They can’t prove no stimulus or Tarp would have worked better, therefore it must be true.

I call bullshit on both accounts… You want me to believe we shouldn’t have spent the money on the banks and on the recovery act, then prove it to me. Prove to me that not spending it would have worked better, that we would be in a better place, telling me  you are right only because you say so doesn’t work, I am not a believer in your religion I need more proof than that.

By the way, John.. Most of the “YOU” I use are not directed at YOU.. it is a general term used when speaking. I  hope you understand that.

Continuing on..

Failure to secure the Olympics?

Are you kidding? 1/2 the country didn’t want the Olympics

Forty-three percent (43%) of Americans say it’s a bad idea for President Obama to go overseas at this time to help Chicago make its final presentation to the International Olympic Committee

John Boehner blasted the President for trying to get them

“Listen I think it’s a great idea to promote Chicago but he’s the president of the United States, not the mayor of Chicago,” Boehner said. “And the problems we have here at home affect all Americans and that’s where his attention ought to be.”

and every night they were rewarded with their opinions by the likes of the GOP and Fox news telling them how bad it would crush us, how much money it would take, how horrible it would be. How dangerous Chicago is

Yes, Fox news is a factor when they have the massive viewer ratings they have, add them into Rush’s 20 million people a week rating and all of them chiming in on the evil that is the Olympics and why would we get it over a country literally begging to have to it because they want it?

But ok, Obama didn’t get the Olympics… that’s a failure on his part. But is that really something to hold against him? out of everything… is that an issue that truly pisses you off and just sticks in your craw?

Gitmo.

I’ve thought about this. Was Obama the naive one to think he could wave his ‘magic negro’ wand and close Gitmo? Or were we the naive ones to think he could wave his ‘magic negro’ wand and close Gitmo? I think it was both. I think a lot of us listened to his speeches and felt the inspiration and hope in that new era he talked about bringing. I think those of us who didn’t roll our eyes and didn’t decide that election night to do everything we possibly could to make his life hell and oppose everything.. everything he tried, actually believed this was the guy to change Rome back into the days of it’s purity,prosperity,glory and power. We (wrongly) assumed that Washington was also sick on the status quo, that Washington wanted to move on to a better place. That the country didn’t care if it was a Republican or Democrat, man or woman, black or white in office, we just wanted hope and change and not more of the same thing we had had for so long. We were all naive.

President Obama owns the failure to close Gitmo, but he doesn’t have sole ownership. Jesus, trust me I know it’s like a broken record to say the GOP also owns this since they stood in the way and did everything in the power to make sure 1/2 the country was against closing Gitmo and bringing the detainees here..but it is the truth. Through fear mongering and out right lies, GOP congressmen,governors,speakers,pundits went out to their communities , viewers, listeners and said “No way! Not in my yard, these guys are dangerous,these guys can’t be held in our prisons, these guys are super-powers that can only be controlled in Cuba” and we both know, hell we all know this is factually untrue. We are holding terrorists right now on our soil, we are holding terrorist right now in our prisons, we have been holding them for years. We are holding people who are worse! We, as Americans, have some of the most dangerous criminals in the world in our prisons right now. We have brain-eaters,baby-rapers,kidnappers,tortures,sex-slave traffickers ,abusers,bombers,pyromaniacs,serial killers, mass murders.. and we have extremely smart and devious   criminals like Madoff, Abramoff and hunderds of others. But somehow we’re ill equip to incarcerate men who have probably never had running water until they got to our prision camp?

That’s the most bogus of all feary-tales ever told. This idea that America is too weak, too incompetent and unable to imprison anyone is incredulous. If this is your belief, that we are just unable to rise to meet this ‘danger’ can you explain your reasoning to me, explain it without “Because they should be in a military tribunal”

All of this leads to a drop in polls.  You’ve seen the link to the numbers of Fox and just Rush, that doesn’t include Beck and all the other conservative radio. When  they are all, from top to bottom on the same line in the play book, all condemning,ridiculing, mocking, lying,inflating.. all giving out the worst of the wosrt bias,slanted partsian spin.. add that in with an entire section of Congress that doesn’t just stand in the way, but also makes up feary-tales and they believe it, polls are going to decline. How could they not?

And what about that anyway. Isn’t it normal for Presidential numbers to come back down to a reasonable level?

The other day I was reading the comments on a reputable news sources story about this Baradar capture, 75% of them were things like “Well, now that we can’t waterboard the guy the CIA will never get anything out him, Thanks Obama for ruining this country once again!” If the only tool in the CIA arsenal is waterboarding… then we really are fucked. Because it’s the opinion that begs the conclusion that the CIA has always and only water-boarded prisoners to get information and it was just the 2-3 years that they were legally allowed to that the were able to function at full capacity in the light of day. The point I’m making is, somehow people  think that CIA  doesn’t know how to get information from anyone without waterboarding them? Is this not the most insane thing you’ve ever seen? Why is this?Where did they get the idea that this was the only tool the CIA had? If  you can truthfully answer that, they you should be able to understand most, if not all of what it is I’m trying to show you.

Who is to blame for this? Not Obama.. but it is what he must fight against. The problem is you cannot argue with someone with that mindset. Their belief is again, religous like.. and cannot be changed,altered or enlightened.

Finally, I saved the best for last… “even with the democrats in control of congress”.. This is the most used response that I  see for pretty much everything. This idea that just because the Democrats had a filibuster  proof margine and didn’t use and some how it’s their fault is ridiculous . Listen, I’m going to tell you a secret that could get my liberal-card revoked ( 🙂 )  unlike the GOP, there are different levels of (D). We don’t all think with one brain, we don’t all follow the leader like a flock of birds, that is what makes us ‘liberal’ or the favorite slam of the GOP, ‘radical’ . We think for ourselves and decide accordingly and not according to party/leader doctrine. We are just not that  ‘religious-like’ in our faith and the following of party ‘dogma’. There are Democrats who don’t believe in abortion, there are some like me who believe in the death penalty and guns rights. To condem anyone.. any party  for not just towing the party-line is asinine  and to blindly follow the party-line used to be a bad thing.. but today, with the entire GOP saying “You can’t even get your party to all vote the same way and use that fillibuster proof majority” is so exquisitely  sad, but still not as sad  wanting and forcing any one party to act that way. I just can’t believe anyone, anywhere would want and encourage people to just blindly vote all (D) or all (R) depending on their party and then ridcule and condem anyone when they didn’t.

Besides any of that, this isn’t a one party system, the other side is supposed to help govern also!

This excuse…“Hey, you guys control congress.. it’s not our fault” and those using it are right though, the problem is the next thing they say to their audience,readers,constituents… and the next thing is invariably

“The Democrats need to listen to the country and work bi-partisanly”

In one hand there is a dare to use the majority, in the other.. a crying to all who will listen that if we don’t do something…have rallies, write letters, send in campaign money.. the Democrats will use their majority. It’s insane! They are literally damned  for not using it by the GOP and some of their own and damned  if the think about using it.

So John, what would you have them do? Which ‘evil’ do the Democrats pick?  Do they follow in the last administrations path and issue Executive Orders, recess appointements, signing statements and push through everything the President says to push through no matter the consequence and just hope that the GOP won’t cry about it too much? Do they forget their own values and beliefs and just vote (D) all the way down the ballot like the GOP does and is encouraging, or really, daring them to do? What is your solution to this? When one party refuses to even come to the table don’t they force the other party to act as a single mind? Force the other party to do it all on their own, with their own philosophies?

Maybe the GOP is comfortable using a single-mind, but this is not and has never been the “Democratic” (party or poltical system.) way..

The GOP has blanketed the world with this falsehood that they want bi-partsanship on every issue, and yet just last week when invited to a health care summit, an ‘exachange of ideas’.. quite a few high ranking GOP’ers said they might be willing to come to the table…. just come to the table now, not vote a certain way or concede a certain point,  but they might show up to the President’s bipartisan effort for health reform meeting but only if the  Democrats dropped their health reform idea and adopted the GOP version. Eric Cantor flat out said that the “only way to bipartisan cooperation is if the Democrats fully embrace the GOP plan!” What? How is that bipartisan? How is that anything other than a great big “Screw you, It’s my way or no way and that’s the only bipartisan I agree with.. do it yourself if you don’t like it! Just remember I will blame you for doing it yourself if you do”

You cannot, as the losing party give that kind of demand.. that kind of close-fist demand.. and then claim you are the bipartisan party, yet they do, and no one calls them on it.  So I ask you once again, is this really an OBama failure and where is any ire at the party that is actually holding bipartsianship hostage?

To me President Obama failures are..

He has moved away from a public option. He promised me a public option and I believed him. He has let the message on this and so many other issues get away from him. He had the advantage and he expected to find ‘Statesmen’  and ‘Adults’ in congress who wouldn’t bastardize everything they could to score a political point and while he’s finally decided to come out swingng and get the truth out.. he’s wasted vaulable time and his ‘capitol’ in the interim.

I see it as a failure that he is still giving contracts to the likes of Blackwater and doing it even though we know they are the evil of all evil. Why do we need to privately fund any war with a bunch of mercenaries? Why do we need them for private security? Why can’t we use the money and build up our military and pay our troops more? Atleast they have rules,laws and codes they must follow. Blackwater and the likes do things with our money and in our names that I do not think the majoirty of us want done in our name. I do not agree at all with their continued government funding. Bring the military back to do the jobs in our name with the honor and integrity that they will bring with them.

I see President  Obama’s lack of authority with Wall Street as another failure. He needs to force those CEO’s to either get their sweet-ass to the proverbial ‘come to Jesus’ meeting.. or risk immediate stripping of the ‘handout, even if that means selling off part of the company to get back the money given to them. I don’t know who these people think they are, but when the President of the United States tells you to come to a meeting.. your sorry ‘hand-out-taking’ ass better get there before the ink is dry on the invitations. I don’t care if it was ‘foggy’ or not, take the damn train.

I don’t care about GOP crying that “OBama hates capitalism .. Obama is an enemy to buisness” because it’s  a load of crap, what we had leading up to this meltdown was not capitalism .. it was rape pure and simple. It’s time Obama starts acting like the President he is and do something about these guys.

And finally.. He has failed at installing a new way of doing it, he has failed at starting a new era of bi-partsianship.  He hasn’t failed for the lack of trying, he’s failed for the lack of realism. He believed he could change the climate of hate that is the US congress. Not a single congressman from either house or either party can say or do anything without checking a poll 1st. They are not there to govern like Obama is, they are there for the power and the paycheck. It is President Obama’s failure to not see this that irks me the most. It is his failure to not see that, no matter which way he goes the entire Right side will be against him as proven time and time again, even by adopting their own policies.. they will go against him. They will and have cut off their noses to spite their face.

President Obama is already lambasted as a socialist even when he’s cut taxes and wasn’t the one to create the largest ‘socialist program’ in a generation or more. Well,  if they are going to call him one anyway, then why not use that and go more radical on his ideas. We just proved a lot of the country is pro-radical change, even our supreme court is. So it is a failure on Obama’s part not to use the gift he’s been given by the Right. He will be slaughtered and lied about by them no matter what he does.. so he might as well do as he wants.

John, thank you for your comments.. I hope I have addressed them in a way that maybe didn’t change your mind.. but atleast gave you a different point of view and a way to look at it

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Let's just eliminate that dog.

This is who you protect when you wish for Obama to “fail”. This is the side you have chosen to stand with, protect and help defend.

Insurer ends health program

rather than pay out big

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Ian Pearl has fought for his life every day of his 37 years. Confined to a wheelchair and hooked to a breathing tube, the muscular dystrophy victim refuses to give up.

But his insurance company already has.

Legally barred from discriminating against individuals who submit large claims, the New York-based insurer simply canceled lines of coverage altogether in entire states to avoid paying high-cost claims like Mr. Pearl’s.

In an e-mail, one Guardian Life Insurance Co. executive called high-cost patients such as Mr. Pearl “dogs” that the company could “get rid of.”

That’s right, Mr. Pearl, is a “Dog” that the company needs to “Get rid of”

Let’s put this is perspective for just a second. I told you about a friend of mine recently to try and put a face many of us know on this healthcare debate.  I wanted Chuck’s story to be on everyone’s mind as they were regurgitating the latest poison from Glenn Beck’s mouth. I wanted people to have a visual of the person they were condemning in their almost orgasmic need to have a United States President fail. A failure that  some of these people  dream of, masturbate to…pray for every chance they get. “At all costs” is the motto, “At any cost” is the pledge.

I failed of course, not even the plight of a great man and amazing friend to many of us made a scratch in the shell that surrounds these ideologues.

So I will try again.

Instead of Mr. Pearl, who has the same condition as Chuck, I want to you again put Chuck’s name, his face, his interaction with you, his “self”.. put him in this story. Does that do anything for you ideologues? Can you sit there and hear that Chuck is just a “Dog” who needs to be gotten “rid of” because he dared to buy an insurance policy, he dared to pay it, he dared to get a debilitating degenerative disease and most of all  he dared to not die quickly enough?  The company that waspaid to cover health costs  can’t cancel one ‘dog’  because it would be against the law, so they just cancel an entire state of ‘dogs’. Is there any face I can put on this problem that will make a dent?

You may say “Oh but Kelly, I’m sure the courts will stop the insurance company from canceling everyone with this kind if policy. I’m sure a judge will see that this man, Mr. Pearl will die if this insurance company is allowed to cancel his policy.” But you would be wrong.

A federal court quickly ruled that the company’s actions were legal, so on Dec. 1, barring an order by the federal Department of Health and Human Services, Mr. Pearl will lose his benefits.

So much for that ‘check and balance’.

For those that abhor government intervention, will you cry with Glenn Beck if the  Health “Czar” Kathleen Sebelius orders the company to live up to it’s contract.

Sadly, we all know the answer to that… Yes, yes  you will.

Will those of you who even thought about trying to explain just how President Obama was creating “Death Panels” care to pick up your pitchfork against this actual ‘death panel’?  Mr. Pearl needs 24 hr nursing care, he is on a ventilator and needs hourly breathing treatments and continuous intravenous medication. Without this he will die, here is your Death Panel Sara Palin, will you ‘tweet’ about how evil this is? Will you take hundreds of thousand of dollars for a speech on this kind of injustice, will the people who aped your stupidity write Mr. Pearl or even Chuck’s name on a sign and demand they not be forgotten?

Sadly, we know the answer to that is.. no, no you won’t.

Guardian, a 150-year-old mutual company, reported profits of $437 million last year, a 50 percent increase over $292 million in 2007. It paid dividends of $723 million to policyholders and had $4.3 billion in capital reserves, according to its annual report. The company’s investment income totaled $1.5 billion that year, a small increase from the year earlier.

This is who you protect with your hatred of a President. This is who you protect with  your ‘at any cost’  ideologue.

“In an e-mail to four other Guardian executives entered into evidence in the Pearls’ suit, company Vice President Tim Birely discussed how the company could “eliminate this entire block to get rid of the few dogs.”

.. and don’t think you can get away with the argument of “Well, you Democrats are in power now and we can’t do anything stop you.” It’s condescending, it’s insincere and it’s bullshit. Most insulting of all.. you know it, snicker and use it anyway.

20 years ago a friend of mine took a ride with a person he had just recently started hanging around. He didn’t know him too well but he seemed cool and they got along. That night the new guy told my friend he was going to rob a local mom & pop grocer for some extra cash. My friend wasn’t a violent person, he wasn’t a criminal, he wasn’t a bad person in any way… but he because he was 17 and stupid he didn’t speak up.

The new guy went into the store while my friend waited in the car, he could have left at that point but for whatever reason he didn’t. After a few minutes the new guy came running back out, jumped in the car and away they went. They never spoke of what went on inside the store and it wasn’t until the next morning when the police showed up at his parents house to arrest him that my friend found out that the store owner had been shot and killed by the new guy. My friend was tried and convicted as an accessory to the crime and is on death row awaiting his date with the executioner. Does he deserve to die for a crime he had no part in? Some would say yes he does, but then again.. they would also be the ones to tell Mr. Pearl to go out and get a job if he wants health care.

The real “Dog” here isn’t Mr. Pearl and it isn’t Chuck or any of the other poor souls who have paid their premiums each month only to have them canceled because they did not die quick enough. The real “dogs” are the insurance company who cares more about an enormous bottom line over the lives they are supposed to be protecting. You all fighting reform at all costs.. at any cost, this is the dog you have allowed into your bed by not saying anything even when you know what they are doing is not only wrong, dangerous and against humanity, but could possibly be murderous. Just like the saying “Lie down with dogs, get up with fleas”  this is on you whether you like it or not.

Lindsey Graham is currently finding that sad fact out. Arlen Specter and Colin Powell could have told him, but a conservative republican of Grahams stature, with his conservative record would have ignored their warnings just as the rest of the ideologues will ignore this liberal’s warning. When you go against the beast you create, the beast you’ve allowed to take over to fight your battle for you, when you go against it… you pay their price. It’s apropos that Graham is now the one to fight off charges that can not be defended because they have no basis in reality. “Fake Republican,” “RINO” (Republican in name only), a “traitor,” “disgrace,” “asshat,” “democrat in drag,” and a “wussypants, girly-man, half-a-sissy”.

The beast you fed,nurtured, appeased every step of the way while pretending “that’s  not what my belief..it’s theirs”.. and “Hey, you guys are in power not us”.. that beast is self-aware and is devouring your party.  That is who your next leaders will have no choice but to cater to. The metaphorically date with the executioner that you await for being an accessory to the crime, would be justice in and of itself if so many truly innocent people weren’t being punished along with you. Don’t believe there are ‘truly innocent’ people being punished? Well, I give you one final story

17-Pound, 4-Month-Old Baby

Denied Health Insurance

for Being Too Fat

Underwriters, the people who are in charge of assessing risk for insurance companies, have decided that baby Alex’s pre-existing condition — obesity — makes him a high-risk patient and have denied him coverage.

His parents were shocked.

“I could understand if we could control what he’s eating. But he’s 4 months old. He’s breast-feeding. We can’t put him on the Atkins diet or on a treadmill,” joked his frustrated father, Bernie Lange, a part-time news anchor at KKCO-TV in Grand Junction. “There is just something absurd about denying an infant.”


The beast you continue to actively support or just ignore because the end is justified by the means for you… denied a 4 month old, breastfed baby for the pre-existing condition of  obesity.

I hope you are happy with your creation.

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What is in a headline: dance puppets dance..

I know it’s ‘en vogue’  to wish the downfall of your country these days, but is there some reason why people want to rush it to such a catastrophic  end?

Look at Drudge recently.. I know he’s a hack whose only concern is President Obama’s failure and how much he can hasten the end of the free world, but really? how is this a good thing?

KISS THE DOLLAR GOODBYE

His apocalyptic story today, like his equally frightening story last week

ARAB STATES LAUNCH SECRET MOVES WITH CHINA, RUSSIA, FRANCE TO STOP USING DOLLAR FOR OIL TRADING-

Drudge report

which I admit, I fell for..can cause some serious damages to the people who live in this country. I am OK with putting this stuff out there if it’s true because I believe information is a good thing, but when it’s  been proven if not completely false,  then exquisitely tainted and still being used as news, news reporting is no longer the goal.

Since the 1st story’s headline and reaction, it has been learned that everyone from head of the Saudi central bank to U.S. officials have been scrambling to get the word out that it is not true. The source for the original is a unknown, the reason for the original story is unknown… but the effects of the story that even Glenn Beck latched on to.. are known.

But one thing is for certain: With the price of gold jumping to $1,048.20 per ounce, traders who moved early enough stood to make millions.-

Politco

Ironically enough, the jump in gold prices was also a major Drudge headline “GOLD HIGH! *” just one day after his siren-waling headline ARAB PLOT TO DROP DOLLAR headline. I would hope ‘greed’ isn’t the only reason for what is going on here. I know there is money to be made in the failure of an empire but please don’t tell me that is what this is really about.  At least tell me this is more ‘pure'( if there is such a thing) than just simple greed. The Politico story refers to man who wrote the original, unsourced claim as a British journalist who has lived in Beirut for over 30 years and is the one of a few people to have interviewed Osama Bin Laden,  but it also saysthat he is  “increasingly associated with more radical theories thus weakening the credibility of the story.” Please tell me good old fashion foreign hatred of America is behind this, not domestic greed.

I mentioned Glenn Beck. He did a scare-tactic.. I mean “show” a few days after the Drudge line on the sinking dollar and rising gold prices.. what exactly is his reason for this ‘dollar dropping- woe is me’ story?

Goldline is Glenn Beck’s Choice for Gold

Before I started turning you on to Goldline, I wanted to look them in the eye. This is a top notch organization thats been in business since 1960. Glenn Beck

"Before I started turning you on to Goldline, I wanted to look them in the eye. This is a top notch organization that's been in business since 1960." Glenn Beck

Do these others, like Beck , also have a stake in the gold market? Is that where this need comes from…  Greed? I don’t know where all this will end up, where the country will be 20 years from now, but I do hope we can regain some of the pride in America that we seem have lost when a black man was elected President. I do hope that one day we will rejoice when an American President wins a Nobel Peace Prize, when Americans almost sweep all the other Nobel categories, and I hope that we will rejoice that we have won an Olympic venue instead of rejoicing our loss to another country.
We spent 8 years calling anyone who did not fall in goose-step with the Bush Administration either a terrorist, a terrorist sympathizer, or just plain unpatriotic. I don’t know what kind of patriotism is being shown these days, but it’ s not the kind I grew up with, the kind where even if you didn’t like the quarterback you still rooted for the home team if you were sitting in the home-team stands. I understand the greed in the healthcare debate because I can see it, I can point to who is paying for the bullshit, who is hocking the bullshit and who is benefiting from it. But I can’t see how any one in this country benefits from the destruction of it. Can you?
Maybe the FTC has the right idea in forcing blogs to inform readers if they have received compensation for their opinion and for advertisers to disclose  studies by research institutes they help fund.  That regulation sure would have made a difference in the use of the “Lewin Groups” data on healthcare reform had they been forced to disclose that they are owned  by the largest health insurance company in the US.  Is there a free speech issue here? I don’t know. What I do know is that we can’t continue allowing a recluse to dictate world events like he is the marionette puppet master, having  faux newscaster crying the ‘dollar’ is falling when they have an investment in gold prices, a research group reporting the dangers of health reform owned by the insurance company fighting against all reform and an un-sourced suggestion from a slightly questionable journalist turn this country into their playground to ruin.  We are in a precarious situation as it is, there is no need to hasten a pre-ordained ending just because it amuses you to do so.

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why a non-profit public option is important..

This was brought up on the MucheDumbre forum today in regards to a government involvement in healthcare..

Essentially, that is my problem with all of this. I already have a problem with the FDA and AMA being owned by drug companies, why make the problem bigger?

If this is how you feel, that private companies already have too many fingers in the political arena and are turning policy in their favor, then the only option for you is the public option.

As it stands now all healthcare options are  owned,regulated,price marked and everything else relating to  them by the for-profit health insurance companies. Your doctor doesn’t decide his fee, Cigna,Aetna,BCBS decide what and if they will pay him.It is the insurance company who decides what they will pay, who they will pay, where they will pay.. who can get their product and  who can keep their product even after paying for it for decades. Without a public option, the way it is now will look like the ‘better’ way in 5 years..

Think about it for  second… A not-for-profit public option that would be self-sufficient and rely on the premiums it collects, going from the Government to the healthcare provider(i.e.. doctor,clinic,hospital)  is  a direct line to the ones doing the service. Yet, this has been deemed evil,socialistic,freedom robbing and bad because it is the government who is collecting the money and giving it out to the providers…

The other alternative is that we subsidized[pay for] not just the >5% who would chose a public option but all 45 million uninsured American with a credit that comes from private and public funds{i.e. taxpayers} . The difference is  that the money goes directly to the insurance company where they take their 30% cut and then decide whether to pay the doctors/hospitals the rest. It is a mainline from your wallet into the wallets of the same types you say you are against, the private companies- NOT the doctors and hospitals proving your care.

Somehow the government  paying the insurance company with taxpayer’s money instead of the provider being paid with the fees that those in the option have paid for is the better option for some. How it’s  better or less socialist for the government to subsidize the insurance companies is something I haven’t had explained to me even though I keep asking,but let’s keep moving.

Not only will the government subsidize the insurance company, but without regulation or something in the market competing with them, the insurance companies can get their ‘asking price’ for any policy they offer, meaning they can start charging the government whatever they want for the healthcare the government is buying from them..while still retaining the right to decide how much they will reimburse the doctors,hospitals or if they even will reimburse them.

What is being asked for here to control this is the choice of a public option, for  less than 5% of the uninsured in the United States .   Less than 5% of those uninsured now, not 20% of the entire population, 50% all of the United States of America, but >5% of the 18% who are without insurance..

I’m not being a smart-ass.. but read that again before moving on…

“Let me be clear — it would only be an option for those who don’t have insurance,” he said.

“No one would be forced to choose it, and it would not impact those of you who already have insurance. In fact, based on Congressional Budget Office estimates,

we believe that less than 5 percent of Americans would

sign up.”-Obama health speech before congress

we’re talking millions of people yes,  but single digit millions.

The not-for-profit public  option will force these unregulated companies to atleast keep their fees reasonable. It won’t put them out of business, the creation of any reform will ensure 45 million more people buy their product. That’s not taking money away from them… that is a windfall of fat cash coming their direction.

The not-for-profit public option will force these companies to own up to their contracts and actually pay out more claims, because to deny someone coverage because of a preexisting condition will become illegal.  It will force them to become a better product than they are right now, because  right now the ‘free market’ is allowing them to have all the marbles whether those be taxpayers marbles or private marbles. It is allowing them to collect whatever amount of money they want while choosing when and who to pay it out to. You purchased your insurance plan to cover your medical costs, you didn’t  purchase it so they company you chose could have complete autonomy to do with your money as they saw fit and thus leaving you responsible for the doctor bill at the same time.

Again, read this again. You pay the insurance company to cover your health care costs.. if they deem your claim unworthy, you are still responsible for the payment  to the doctor/clinic or hospital who treated you. So now you have paid the insurance company to keep your money and the doctor to treat you. Seriously people, if you just want to send your money to someone while still being responsible for your bills, I’ll be glad to accept it instead.



To put it simply, there are only two choices here.. .We either pay the insurance companies to insure the uninsured and thus, paying their fee for doing this  or we pay the doctors directly to treat the uninsured. If you don’t like big Pharma being involved in the politics and decision making, then you can’t be against something that  takes big insurance out of the politics and decision making on people lives.

What is wrong with giving the overwhelming majority of the people a choice of what is out there?  That’s all, a choice.

I found a quote from Bill Moyers on another blog that said

“we should be treating health as a condition, not a commodity.”

I can’t imagine it being put into simpler terms.

If you are wondering just how much around the fingers of the insurance CEO’s the politicians have wrapped themselves, there are calls for ‘tort reform’.  This will in essence regulate how much money a lawyer can be paid for his services. Why are we so against providers of the actual services being reimbursed for their product and so much in favor of the companies who offer no other service than to hold our money and decide who or if they will pay with it. If the doctors and lawyers charge too much, isn’t one of the tenents of ‘free market capitalism’ that they will be weeded out as their competitors  offered the same for less?  Isn’t government imposing the will of   a select few companies, who service is solely to pay these doctors and lawyers the money you gave them, isn’t imposing those companies will over the will of the ones doing  the service you hired them for,  more detrimental to  the idea of Capitalism?

****UPDATE****

sometimes a good video says it all…




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Chuck's story…

Anecdotal evidence is never a game-changer unless the subject of the evidence is a great friend who has accomplished so many things in his life and has made the best out of a crappy hand life dealt him. Then, sometimes.. not always but sometimes.. that kind of evidence strikes the right cord in the right people and then change really does come.

I’ve tried to give you guys the examples of people I knew, in the hopes that you may have known people like them and/or could feel the desperation of their situation and maybe want to find a way to help them, but I failed in bringing the people I was targeting over to just the idea that change is needed, much less my idea of what that change should be. But maybe this time, with the example being someone we all know, we all respect and care for.. maybe this is the straw that breaks the camels back for some people and maybe some of those will go on to help fight for what is desperately needed in this country, instead of trying to kill any hope at all of a reprieve for those that are stuck in a situation they had no control over.

Even though he gave me permission, I  still thought about changing the name in this piece and just sticking to the story. I knew that even with omitting the name most of us would know who I was talking about with just one or 2 words about him so there was no need for him to be anything other than anonymous to the rest, but I don’t want him to  be just another blind example, I want you to say his name in your head when you are fighting against health care reform. When you look at the words of the President

But what we can do is make sure that at least some of the waste that exists in the system that’s not making anybody’s mom better, that is loading up on additional tests or additional drugs that the evidence shows is not necessarily going to improve care, that at least we can let doctors know and your mom know that, you know what? Maybe this isn’t going to help. Maybe you’re better off not having the surgery, but taking the painkiller.

I want the name Chuck Conners aka Uselesslegs in your thoughts when you blithely mock  this very real problem in our very broken system. I want Chuck’s story in the forefront of your brain, when you argue that we have the best care anywhere, that there is no such thing as that silly concept of doctors charging for a surgery when you only need a pill.. I want you to tell Chuck’s story to a friend or family member, and then explain to them why President OBama and the Democrats are just trying to kill this country and kill our ‘wonderful’ healthcare.

Before I continue, after Chuck told me his story and I started writing it I realized that this is the story for not having a public option, this is the reason why the government shouldn’t be in the medical insurance field. I know that there are blind loyalists  out there who will miss the point of this story and only latch on to the easy part of the problem, they’ll do this because they don’t have the intellect to see the big picture, they are the ‘death panelists’.. and ‘birthers’…the ideologue,  to them I will just nod and say “Yes Dear”.. I  was worried about writing this because the lack of brain mass some of these people have is more than made up by their vocal abilities and abhorrent behavior, but if I want to be true, if I want to be honest.. this type of story should never happen. It should not happen with private  or government run care. We need reform and anyone not seeing that, or not seeing that this is also a problem in the private sector needs to just go build another sign and leave the serious matters to the adults to figure out.

First a little back story for those that don’t know. Chuck has muscular dystrophy and it has progressed so over the past few years that he is completely dependent on a wheelchair to get around and someone to help him in and out of it. At 42, he’s already lived well past anyone’s guess…and he’s done so with a kind of dignity,humility and humor that I never knew existed. Chuck understands that people are uncomfortable with the disabled,  we don’t know how to act, where to look, what to say, so Chuck takes it upon himself to break that uncomfortable moment with a self deprecating joke or a well-rehearsed fart noise. My oldest daughter was one of the people he endeared himself to immediately with his ‘ice-breaking’. She knew of him and his disability, but she didn’t know of his humor..yet. When he called my house and she answered, she very innocently asked “How ya doing Chuck?”.. His reply was a simple scream “I”m in a wheelchair.. HOW DO YOU THINK I’M DOING!”. She immediately stared to cry because she thought she had done something to offend him, she was in the act of throwing the phone at me and spilling the story out when I couldn’t control my laughing any longer, I told her to listen to the phone, and there was Chuck laughing while at the same time trying to soothe her into knowing he was just kidding around with her. He hadn’t joked with her to be mean to her, but he knew, like all people in his or similar situations know, that us ‘normal’ people just don’t know how to react to them. He taught not only her, but my younger daughter, that it’s ok to look at someone in a wheelchair, or someone who is disabled, it’s ok to talk with them and be relaxed around them.. He taught them that it’s ok to treat them as normal and to laugh with and enjoy them just as they would anyone else. For that I say Thank you, because I didn’t learn this ease and comfort until I was much much older and Chuck was the one who taught it to me also.

But, the perfect example of Chuck and the way he looks at life is right there on the back of  his car, his registration tag, which simply reads…. “Gimpy”. The humor in that one word sums up the man that’s sitting the wheelchair inside that van.

When you hear Chucks life story, you can’t help but wonder what it would have been had he been physically ‘normal’, personally I don’t think he would have been as colorful, as funny.. and unique, what God took, he gave back in other ways.  The stories he can tell you about how his father scared him with a tarantula, how because of the ‘fear’ practical jokes his father would play on him, he ‘accidentally’ hit his father in the head with hammer to save his older brother, the teenage girl who peed on his couch when a stuffed squirrel was thrown at her, and my family’s favorite.. when his poncho got stuck in the wheels of his wheelchair and he was stuck going in circles until his companions could stop laughing long enough to extricate him.. These are the stories that make him who he is and had he not had a debilitating disease, I wonder if would he have had the same sense of humor?

At one time Chuck was THE Jerry’s Kid. His face graced many a magazine and poster. Not only was he part of the Jerry Lewis MDA Telethon’s we all used to sit around and watch all weekend, but he was also the youngest Jaycee and was an honorary member of the VFW. He’s made the best of what was given to him, but even with all of the support he was given by all of these great and selfless people and an amazing organization, if it wasn’t for the Medicaid/Medicare program, he wouldn’t have lived past his early teens.  The Muscular Dystrophy Association helps with what they can, but they are not equipped to deal with it all.

For people like Chuck, the idea of a private insurance is laughable.. to them, the idea that a government run system would destroy what this country was built on, is an insanity. It’s because of medicaid/medicare that people like Chuck aren’t regulated to some orphanage or ditch out behind the woodshed. It’s Medicare/Medicaid that pays for his medicine, his doctors, his wheelchair. It was medicaid that came into his house recently and installed rails on his ceiling for a ‘body lift’ that can take him from his bed, to his toilet, to his bath. Until that day earlier this year when the rail was installed, Chuck  hasn’t had an actual “bath” in years. Showers and sponge baths, sure, but a tub bath? No.  He doesn’t measure life in grand increments, he’s never been able to, but to be able to finally sit down in a tub was a grand day for him.

It wasn’t until the other day that Chuck also found out just how horrible our system really is. Government run or not, he found himself in a pile of shit with no way out of it.   The sad part is that I’m not exaggerating or hyper-ventilating hyperbole..

Chuck’s mother moved in with him some years ago when it became apparent that he was going to start needing more intensive around the clock care. He’s been able to do for  himself for so many years, but his disease isn’t one that goes into remission or gets better over time, even the strongest or most lucky eventually fall victim to disappearing strength due the shrinking muscles. It’s because of his mother that he doesn’t need a daily visiting nurse, or God-forbid to live in an assisted living facility. It’s also in my opinion what has kept him going all these years, had she been like other parents who just couldn’t do it anymore and put him in a state run, or if by some stroke of luck, privately  funded assisted living care, disease and disregard would have killed him years ago. It’s not that these places would have necessarily treated him poorly,  but it’s just the nature of the beast that they zap  your will to live in small increments over time and then there is the spread of colds,flu’s and other disease that affects someone like Chuck so detrimentally and are so rampant in the close confines of these homes. Yes, it’s my belief that his mothers sacrifice all these years has lead to his longevity, not just in the extended  years of  his life, but in the life he has lived over the years. A nursing home would have curb his spirit, his joy, his imagination.. it would have killed what makes Chuck, Chuck.

A couple of weeks ago Chuck’s mom was struck by an acute illness that required emergency surgery, which required an extended hospital stay and a long convalescence at home. In other words, now she needed to be cared for and not only was Chuck unable to do this in return for her sacrifice all these years for him, but his physical capabilities have deteriorated so much that he was left wondering who was going to care for him.  He knew that his brother would come up and help him once, maybe twice a week, but he was also painfully aware that there were going to be times when he would be in need of assistance and no one would be there to help. I don’t mean in need of showers or baths, cooking food to eat, or help getting into bed. No, Chuck has learned to go without a bath or shower and use a washcloth, he’s learned to eat whatever is handy in his line of reach, and as for sleeping.. well he can just roll his chair up to the dining room table and rest his head on his arms and get a few winks that way.  Things we all take for granted, things that are the extreme of simple to us.. well, he’s found his way to enjoy also. No, the help I am talking about is our own basic body functions..  urination and defecation.  Chuck has found a way around those too, he just stops eating and drinking.  But even this is not perfection.

Because he knew that he was going to need just a few minutes help each week until his mother had recovered, he called his medicaid office to ask for a visiting nurse or nursing assistant to come out 30 minutes a week to help him. Before I go any farther I want you to think about that. Try for a minute to think if you could limit yourself to a bathroom break at a predestined time, once or maybe twice during a 7 day period.  Do you have that kind of control, do you think it would be easy on a Monday to just say to  yourself  “Ok, I can’t poop again until Thursday at 9am” .  Welcome to Chuck’s world.

When he made his request to the insurance office, he didn’t ask for someone to come out every other day and bathe him, or every day to help him  on the toilet. Like I said, those things he’s been able to curb by not eating or drinking. But even the best starvation doesn’t keep you from having to use the bathroom for an entire week and he knew that. So Chuck’s humble request was for someone to come out once a week and help him with that problem, the rest of the time he would ration his food and drink and ‘hold it’ until his brother could come up on the weekend. The medicaid representative  was very helpful, she understood what he needed and told him she had just the thing for him.. a 90 day stay in an assisted living facility. Now, besides this being a death sentence for someone in Chucks condition, it was an absurdity to him because he didn’t need that kind of help, he just needed someone to come out and help him in and out of his chair for a couple minutes a week. He explained this again to the woman on the phone, but as sympathetic as she was, she couldn’t give him a visiting nurse or CNA.. she could only give him a 90 stay at his local old-folks home. Chuck, understandable upset, refused and then started the process of limiting his food,water and ‘holding it’…. and he almost made it.

It had only been a few days, he’d gone longer in the past, but whether it was something he ate that didn’t agree with him or whether nature just had to take it’s course, he failed in his attempted to not soil himself. It wasn’t much, just a little bit of a bowel movement, but it was enough that he knew he was sitting in his own shit and worse than that, there was nothing he could do about it anytime soon. Even if his brother came up right then, he was an hour away and Chuck would be sitting there in his own mess the whole time, and that is exactly what happened.

I’ve noticed that even the most ‘shy’ of us reach a point where it doesn’t matter who sees or smells what, we just need help and we need it right then. That’s the place were Chuck was, sitting in his own shit, waiting for his brother to come up and help wash him up. Help wash the area on Chuck off, was his clothes off and wash his chair off. What a humbling experience this must have been, it had to have the most humbling hour of his life. But it eventually came to the point where he didn’t care who came in and saw or smelled what… he just wanted help. He found out those moments waiting for his brother to come up and clean him, just what it meant that he was disabled. I’m know that through the years there had to be many other moments that came up and made him realize this fact, but I’m not sure that any humiliated him the way this time did.

The next day he again called and begged the insurance company for 1-30 minute visit a week so he could avoid a repeat of the day before, he was again denied. They would of course be happy to spend tens of thousands of dollars for him to unnecessarily stay in a 24 hr facility for 90 days, but no. .. they would not under any circumstances pay  $50-$75 a week for 5-6 weeks for a nurse to come to his home.

…and people say reform is not needed, that there is no waste in healthcare, that to cut any unnecessary procedures means a ‘rationing’ of care, that doctors don’t prescribe  that which is unnecessary over that which is needed in the name of greed and the all mighty dollar?

Chuck’s story has ended well, he finally got a hold of a worker who would listened to his sense that he didn’t need a 90 day,thousands of dollars treatment… he just need a 30 minute weekly visit. She set him up with not one, but 2 visits a week.

Whether it’s medicare,medicaid or private insurance.. reform is needed.  Had Chuck decided to take the medicaid office up on it’s offer, thousands of dollars would have been wasted when only a couple hundred were all that was needed. Those thousands could have gone to someone else care instead, someone who didn’t have insurance.. or 100 someone’s without insurance but in need of a flu shot this season. There are a million different ways that money could have been used properly, but because it is a Democrat asking for that reform, the psycho ‘right’ has an apoplectic  fit about him wanting to pull the plug on grandma, him wanting to stop seniors from getting hip-replacements and heart surgery or him wanting to kill of  the ‘damaged’ children of our society.

When a party says that the President who wants to talk to kids about the value of eduction and to stay in school is really trying to ‘indoctrinate’ them into a new version of ‘Hitler’s Youth’.. it’s time the adults stand up and tell these crazies to shut the fuck up already…the adults on both sides of the aisle. The sad part is the GOP’s lack of caring in all that is going on.  Some know that the fringe they are courting and allowing into the debate field are as bat-shit crazy as they come, but they know that they are also so desperate for an answer that if the Liberals are distracted enough by the insanity, they themselves will have time to actually come up with that answer. The crazies will eventually be throw out of the party,  the Conservatives aren’t that stupid, but until then the rest of will just sit in our chairs… not eating.. not drinking.. and praying that we don’t shit ourselves before our brother comes to rescue us from situation that we can’t just ‘pull our boot-straps up’ and get out of on our own.


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