Sunday, August 30, 2009

Tribute

TaliDan here. Its certainly been a reflective week while watching the memorial for Senator Ted Kennedy. It was motivating to look back upon the years, listening to story after story about Teddy and the Kennedy legacy in general. Bill Maher hosted Bill Moyers on his HBO show. It was a very poignant piece. Mr. Moyers opened with a very focused rant on health care. Basically he said, "We are in this together. Money won't buy everything. Some things don't have a price tag, but a value system." He went on to say that the drug companies, insurance companies, and Wall Street currently decides who lives and who dies, all for profit not social justice. He stated that President Obama needs to make this a moral issue, similar to what JFK did for Civil Rights. He wishes President Obama would lead more like Teddy Roosevelt, who was not afraid to pick a fight (his was against greed and Wall Street). In summary, Obama should fight instead of nibbling around the edges. Instead of finesse, say its the right thing to do instead of citing actuarial curves. Mr. Moyers is appalled that the GOP is setting the agenda, the same GOP that ran the U.S. into the ground for eight years and left us with few options. We had an election. The democrats have a large majority, and the GOP has set the tone. This just shows how deep the tentacles of corporate America have delved. Mr. Moyers also had an interesting take on the current situation. He basically said, go for it all. "a half a loaf of bread doesn't feed the crowd". He would rather see no loaf to keep people hungry, rather than watering down the bill. Truman was defeated in his Medicare bill, but it laid the groundwork for JFK/LBJ to finally pass it. If Obama fails, so be it. He would have tried, and the base will stay on the offensive.

That being said, I was taken by the moral angle of this issue. This will fit nicely, for my mini tribute to the Kennedy's and the general idea of a greater good.
Part of JFK's speech on civil rights (moral issue),Ted's eulogy at Bobby's funeral (change does not happen by the those who are comfortable), and Ted himself on health care (morality of money deciding who lives and who dies). This is a treasure trove of motivation.





Saturday, August 29, 2009

1 week to go

Its coming (hint: not the bad elevator music).



What a better way to get your Saturday started!

Saturday Morning Cartoons - Bugs Bunny in "Haredevil Hare"

This is a classic.  Ol' Bugs, bribed with carrots, reluctantly goes to the moon.  Right after landing, Marvin the Martian arrives to blow up the earth.  Will Bugs be able to stop Marvin and his diabolical plan?



Friday, August 28, 2009

Friday Night! Outta Sight! Boz Scaggs in “Lido Shuffle”

Man, what a day.  The internet went down around 8:15 and didn’t come back until 4.  I’ve been trying like mad to catch up. 

In the meantime, I bring you some old school Boz Scaggs.  Watch Boz rehearse.  Watch Boz work the phone and his Rolodex.  Watch Roadies hook up a stage.  Watch Boz rock the house!

Thursday, August 27, 2009

GOP Survey Asks Questions Everybody Would Be Against – Question Infers HC Discrimination Based on Party Affiliation

I’ve seen these emails from the GOP before.  They ask a series of questions which are worded in such a way that any answer other than the desired answer is a choice in favor of lunacy.  Today, Talking Points Memo analyzes the latest and greatest:

Recently, the Republican National Committee mailed out a survey to an unknown number of voters--including at least one non-Republican--spreading misinformation about the Democrats' health care reform proposal.

The most egregious question: "It has been suggested that the government could use voter registration to determine a person's political affiliation, prompting fears that GOP voters might be discriminated against for medical treatment in a Democrat-imposed health care rationing system. Does this possibility concern you?"

Of course, this hasn't been suggested except in the minds of the GOP officials who drafted these questions.

I used to get these and, sadly, I didn’t get this one.  Probably because I thought enough to leave comments.  Yes, I’m afraid I called them out on questions like the one above.  Truth be told, yes, discrimination based on party affiliation most certainly concerns me, and I’M A DEMOCRAT!  I would fight tooth and nail to make sure that nothing like this was ever passed. 

Well, I suppose if you would fall for something like that, then you would most certainly fall for voting for somebody like this.  And if you voted for somebody like this, then you will most likely get what you deserve via self fulfilling prophecy (i.e., elect lousy Government, get lousy Government, kick and scream about how Government can’t do anything right, repeat):

Andrew T.’s Essential Blog Tools Now Available for Firefox

I am pleased to announce that my latest gift to the blogosphere is now available.  “Andrew T’s Essential Blog Tools” is a collection of Firefox add-ons that I have found make my life as a blogger a little easier.  As of today, there are twelve applications that help me with research, bookmarking, finding and using photos and videos, and staying up to date on current events.  These are some pretty slick tools and all work inside my Firefox browser. 

You can find the collection here.  Use only what works for you.  I like to experiment and find that they’re easy to remove if I don’t like them.  If you don’t have Firefox and want to give it a spin, download it here.  There are over 5,000 different tools and toys you can add to it. 

Ok, enough with my obvious love affair with Firefox.  Check out the collection and happy blogging!

Steele Has Trouble Keeping His Story Straight in NPR Interview

Republicans have been talking out of both sides of their mouth for weeks.  One moment, they’ll tell you that Government can’t do anything right.  They’ll say that the only way to fix our health care woes is by using the glorious power of the free market.  They’ll also mention that we can’t possibly afford it.   The very next second, they’ll defend the 100% Government run health care plan known as Medicare and they’ll be damned if they’re going to let anybody cut benefits, regardless of cost.

Enter Michael Steele.  Never before has this shifty dynamic been so accurately exposed.  NPR’s Steve Inskeep really challenged him on this notion and Steele got himself into a bit of a pickle:

At one point, Steele tied himself into knots trying to explain his view on the proper role of government after saying that “there are issues in the insurance market that we can regulate a little bit better”:

INSKEEP: Wait, wait — You would trust the government to look into that?

STEELE: No, I’m talking about the private — I’m talking about citizens. I’m talking about — (CROSSTALK)

INSKEEP: Who is it you — You said it is something that should be looked into. Who is it that you think should look into that?

STEELE: Well, who regulates the insurance markets?

INSKEEP: That would be the government, I believe.

STEELE: Well, and so what. Now wait a minute. Hold up. You’re doing a wonderful little dance here and you’re trying to be cute. But the reality of this is very simple. I’m not saying the government doesn’t have a role to play. I’ve never said that. The government does have a role to play; it has a very limited role to play.

INSKEEP: Mr. Chairman, I respect that you think I’m doing a dance here. I just want you to know that as a citizen, I’m a little confused by the positions you take because you’re giving me a very nice nuanced position here —

STEELE: It’s not nice and nuanced. I’m being very clear.

Yes, clear as mud.  This is what happens when all you do is tell lies.  You tell old people what they want to hear and then you tell the rest of us something else.  When those two ideas don’t jive you get the above.  You can listen to the whole thing here:

Word to Think Progress and Bob Cesca!

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

A Word About Blog Experiements and a Good Cartoon...Yep, That's About the Size of It

I should tell you up top that I am experimenting with some different online tools. For example, I am using two new tools on the blog. I installed a new comments setup that allows for replies. I also have an instant search where you highlight a quote or phrase and a bubble will appear with a number of search options appear. Click one to search that highlight. Give them a try and let me know how it worked for you. If it's slow or worthless, I'll ditch them.

For this, I'm trying a service that allows me to clip sections of sites for instant posts. I don't know if this will suit my purposes or not, but I won't know unless I try.

Having said all that, here's an editorial cartoon that is deadly accurate. Enjoy!
clipped from www.seattlepi.com
 blog it

Follow the Money! Handy Chart Identifies the Interests Behind the Anti-Health Care Movement

Ever wonder who’s financing health care opposition?  Have you ever asked who’s feeding lies to the town hall protester?  Now, thanks to Campaign for American’s Future, you don’t have to.  They’ve created this handy little chart that helps you follow the money.  Just click the chart to enlarge.

AHIP_chart7

Monday, August 24, 2009

Your Government and You! Part 1

Talidan here, feeling like a new series this week. After all of the hullabaloo about "keep gubment out of my Medicare" or "you don't want some Washington bureaucrat standing in the way", I thought it was time for a little pep talk for ol' guv. She's feeling blue for all she has done for you!

Here is part one:

She is 76 years old. She lives in Washington D.C. She employs 5,381 workers. She provides insurance to millions and millions. She is runs like a well oiled clock. Since her birth, not a single depositor has lost 1 cent of insured funds. Her mission- Sleep Tight. Her nickname "Big Chris". Her real name- FDIC. Perhaps it was her upbringing that causes her seriousness:



Can you imagine what would happen today? What if President Obama said, "Look. We need to start a government run corporation to oversee the banks. We need to insure the deposits of the customers. We need to regulate and supervise nonmember banks." Oh man I can see it now. "Keep the gubment out of my banks...wah wah wah, gubment bad, bank runs good!"

Your deposits are safe, thanks to the forward thinking of FDR and the FDIC!

Report on the Pro-Health Care Demonstration in South Bend, Indiana – A Huge Success for Pro-Reformers

As I mentioned on Friday, there was a demonstration last Saturday in Downtown South Bend, Indiana.  It was actually a counter demonstration to a protest organized by the Northwest Indiana Patriots, who were coming in from LaPorte County.  LaPorte County is just West of St. Joseph County, which is home to South Bend.  They were to picket outside Congressman Joe Donnelly’s office to show their opposition to health care reform. 

For those scoring at home, it was a huge win for our team as we occupied three of the four corners and outnumbered them at least 3 to 1.  I didn’t get an accurate head count, but I would guess that nearly 100 people of all ages stood in what felt like a rainy October day.  I was certainly not a mid-August type of day by any stretch.

It was a friendly, festive atmosphere for the pro-reform side.  For me, it was reassuring to see such a great turnout, especially since it has felt like the only people who care are those who are trying to kill any kind of reform.  I managed to take some pictures and I have to say, they’re overwhelmingly positive:

It was a different story across the street.  I didn’t see any Nazi imagery, but I did see a guy with the “Obama as the Joker” shirt.  Lots of “vote no, or you will go!” threats, which were aimed at elected officials who were not present.  Judging from their numbers, they’re not going to sway any elections any time soon.  I also, to no surprise, found that their side was considerably older and their messages didn’t seem to make much sense.  One woman had this beautifully drawn cartoon that none of us could make out.  It looked like a doctor holding a syringe and somebody sitting on a chair.  I asked around if anybody got it.  Nobody did.  Here’s a representative sample of their side of the street:

I had a funny thought about the woman with the bullhorn.  As she was marching back and forth saying things like, “we are freedom fighters!” I couldn’t help but to think of the Blues Brothers.  Specifically, the scene where the Nazis are marching in Skokie and Jake and Elwood drive them off the bridge. 

Anyway, it was a great day for the pro-reform set.  I had an amusing/irritating conversation with one of them that deserves it’s own post.  Keep an eye out for that.  In all, it was an uplifting and reassuring day and I hope there are more.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Its coming....

Saturday Morning Cartoons - “Speedy Gonzales”

I believe this is Speedy Gonzales’ first appearance.  The local mice are hungry and want what’s inside the Ajax Cheese plant.  One by one, Sylvester picks of the mice, forcing them to recruit the fastest mouse in the land!

Mornin' Sunshine

TaliDan here. Sat. morning, ahhhhhhhhhh. How can I go about sharing a video that fits with ATIOTC's great Saturday morning lineup? Hmmm, how about one with a bit of comedy, yet just a sniff of a current political topic? I give you the frustration of trying to do your job when a bunch of crabby hecklers steal the show: Thanks, Mr. Henson.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Conservatives Happily Spend $100 Billion a Year Blowing up Lands Far Away, But Won’t Spend the Same Here to Save Lives

I just came across a very compelling post from Steve Benen at the Political Animal.  He opens with a statement the President made at yesterday’s online town hall:

"Now, one thing that's very important to remind people, because you notice there's been a talking point from opponents -- 'trillion-dollar health care bill' -- they love repeating that. 'Trillion-dollar health care bill.'

"First of all, it's important to remind people that when they say 'trillion dollars,' they're talking about over 10 years. So this -- we're talking about $100 billion a year -- which is still a significant amount of money. But just to give you a sense of perspective, I mean, the amount of money that we're spending in Iraq and Afghanistan is -- what's the latest figure, Debbie? You figure $8 billion to $9 billion a month, right?

"So for about the same cost per year as we've been spending over the last five to six years, we could have funded this health care reform proposal, just to give you a sense of perspective."

Why the White House has not been pounding on this point I will never know.  The real generational theft was the debt financing of the war in Iraq.  Here’s how Benen describes it:

Conservatives have said they're entirely comfortable with spending at least $100 billion a year on wars in the Middle East. Indeed, these same conservatives have said price is no object when it comes to military conflicts. How much of that money is added to the national debt, to be paid for by future generations? Every single penny. This, according to the right, makes perfect sense, fiscally and strategically.

In contrast, the idea of spending $100 billion a year on health care is, according to these same conservatives, outrageous. For many Americans, health coverage is also a matter of life or death, but the price tag has nevertheless been deemed offensive. Indeed, according to the center-right members of the Gang of Six -- who have had very little to say about debt-financed funding for Iraq and Afghanistan -- the principal focus now has to be on making health care reform even cheaper.

If reform does cost as much as $100 billion a year for 10 years, how much of that money is added to the national debt, to be paid for by future generations? According to Democratic policymakers, not one cent. This is, of course, the exact oppose of the approach the Bush/Cheney administration embraced for the wars in the Middle East, not to mention the Bush/Cheney Medicare expansion that cost hundreds of billions of dollars, all of which was added to future generations' tab.

That Republicans claim the high ground on fiscal responsibility and debt reduction continues to be a source of great comedy.

Outstanding again, Steve!

New Ad Exposes the Real Death Panels

Death panels, as Sarah Palin describes them, are a myth.  There is no provision in any proposed bill that would allow the Government, or anybody else for that matter, to do away with grammie and grampie because they are too expensive to care for or no longer serve a productive purpose in society. 

That said, there are death panels.  Real life death panels, staffed by groups of doctors, employed by insurance companies.  These doctors decide whether a procedure is covered or not.  The decision to go forward with a treatment or not often depends on money.  The more money the death panel saves, the bigger the reward.  Fabulous cash and merchandise, anybody?

That’s why this ad, from Americans United for Change is so great.  Not only do they disprove the death panel myth, as Sarah Palin describes it, but they prove that rationing care is happening by the private tax takers in the private insurance industry.

Counter Demonstration in South Bend, Indiana Tomorrow, August 22, at 11 am

I received this message from MoveOn.org today:

An anti-reform group has scheduled a rally at Congressman Donnelly's office in a show of support AGAINST health care reform. We need your help again! They are instructing people from outside the area to come into South Bend. We need to demonstrate to our legislators and the media that public option supporters outnumber the anti-reformers and so, we will peacefully gather to show our support FOR health care reform! They have called it for noon, so we are asking our people to come an hour before. If that's too early, anytime you can make it will be great!

Let’s go people!  If you happen to be in or around Northern Indiana/Southern Michigan and want to see real health care reform, with a true American Plan; a plan that offers choice, affordability and portability, then come to South Bend, Indiana tomorrow.  We meet at the corner of Colfax and Main at 11 am.  The Northwest Indiana Patriots will be there to voice their opposition to the American Plan.  We need to outnumber these folks and send them back to “The Region” with their tails between their legs!  If you do decide to come, don’t wear red as that’s their color.  Apparently, the anti-reform movement spawned from an offshoot of the Bloods.  Does that make us Crips?

FIRED UP!!!


View Larger Map

By the way, I’m interested in good ideas for signs.  If you have a catchy slogan in favor of health care, let me know!

Jon Stewart Challenges Betsy McCaughey’s “Death Panel” Claims-Even With Giant Binder, She Can’t Prove It

Betsy McCaughey didn’t coin the phrase “Death Panel.”  That was Sarah Palin.  No, McCaughey just pressed the idea that Medicaid recipients would be required to discuss the end of their lives with their doctor every five years.  She’s the one who made it sound like the Government, after you’re old and decrepit, was going to go to your house, take you out back, and ask, “gas, injection, or bullet to the head.”  I like to call it the Old Yeller directive.

So, here she is, on the Daily Show, with her giant binder that contains half of the House health care reform bill, trying to prove her point.  Needless to say, it’s hard to prove a lie when you’re lying.

The Daily Show With Jon Stewart Mon - Thurs 11p / 10c
Betsy McCaughey Pt. 1
www.thedailyshow.com
Daily Show
Full Episodes
Political Humor Healthcare Protests

Um…er…um…stammer…it’s here somewhere, right?  Nope, you’re lying, liar.

Word to TPM!

Anti-Reform Video Perfectly Describes Present System

I received an email this morning from the Sam Adams Alliance.  I have never received anything from them before and I don’t know how they found me.  I assume it’s because I have signed up for a number of right wing newsletters.  I want to make sure I’m well rounded, plus, I like to laugh.  Anyway, the Sam Adams Alliance attached the below video.  It’s a well made anti-reform, anti-Government control clip.  That said, while I watched it, I couldn’t help but think, “are they against reform or for it because what they’re describing sounds an awful lot like what we have now.”

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Some States That Believe Mistruths About Health Care are also Fattest, Most Uneducated

Check out what I just read, compliments of Sam Stein and the Huffington Post:

A new study by Gallup shows that large swaths of populations in the South and West -- anywhere from one-in-five to one-in-four individuals -- are currently lacking health insurance coverage.

These same regions also have the largest percentage of populations who believe widely perpetuated mistruths about the Obama agenda, including allegations that the president will set up "death panels" and wants a complete government takeover of the health care system.

According to Gallup, of the 25 states with the greatest percentage of the uninsured, all but three are based in the South or the Midwest.

LIST OF STATES WITH MOST UNINSURED

Texas - 27 percent of the population is uninsured New Mexico --- 25.6 percent Mississippi - 24 percent Louisiana - 22.4 percent Nevada - 22.2 percent Oklahoma - 22.2 percent (considered a Midwest state) California - 21 percent Wyoming - 20.7 percent Florida - 20.7 percent Georgia - 20.7 percent South Carolina - 20.4 percent Montana - 20.3 percent Alaska -- 20.2 percent Arkansas - 20.1 percent Colorado - 20 percent Oregon - 19.4 percent West Virginia - 19.3 percent (considered a Northeast state) North Carolina - 19.3 percent Idaho - 18.8 percent Utah - 18.1 percent Kentucky - 17.9 percent Tennessee - 17.8 percent Nebraska - 17.7 percent Alabama - 17.2 percent Missouri - 17.1 percent (considered a Midwest state)

I thought it would be fun to see where these states fall in some other stats.  How about obesity?  Here’s a category where you don’t want to be number 1, unless, of course, your state is proud of its thickfreakness:

State

Obesity Rank

Mississippi

1

Alabama

2

West Virginia

3

Tennessee

4

Oklahoma

5

South Carolina

6

Kentucky

7

North Carolina

8

Arkansas

10

Missouri

12

Louisiana

13

Texas

14

Georgia

18

Nebraska

21

Alaska

24

New Mexico

30

Nevada

31

Wyoming

34

Idaho

35

Florida

36

Oregon

39

Montana

41

California

42

Utah

46

Colorado

50

I also wanted to know how they rank nationally for education.  As opposed to the previous example, the higher the number, the dumber:

State

Education Rank

Nevada

49

Mississippi

48

California

47

Alaska

46

Alabama

45

Louisiana

44

New Mexico

43

Georgia

41

Oregon

40

Utah

38

West Virginia

37

Oklahoma

36

Arkansas

32

Kentucky

31

Tennessee

30

Florida

29

Colorado

27

South Carolina

26

Texas

25

North Carolina

23

Missouri

22

Idaho

20

Wyoming

19

Nebraska

11

Montana

7

Does this come as a surprise?  Of the 25 least insured states in the Union, States that, when polled, the majority believe the lies about health care reform, 19 of them are the dumbest.  15 of the least insured states that, when polled, believe the most lies are also the fattest.  I’m going to assume that they don’t read much and they don’t get out much.  Which would lead me to the conclusion that they’re getting their information from the television.  I wonder which network tells the most lies about health care?  It must be the one that has the most viewers, right?

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

If You Don’t Get the Health Care You Want, Blame Yourself

Alright, Democrats. Un-ball yourselves from the corner and remove your thumbs from your mouths. Stand up! Throw your shoulders back and suck in that gut! If you’re not happy with what’s happening with health care reform, then do something about it!

I know you’re all bent because it appears that fearless leader is folding on everything that is good and meaningful regarding health care reform. Yes, it’s looking pretty bleak. Rachel Maddow says that the public option is dead because Democrats have a “lack of political ambition.” While that might be true, they certainly haven’t heard from us on the subject. And if they haven’t heard from us, then why should they care to do anything about it?

See, for all intents and purposes, it appears that the only people who care about health care reform are the people that want it dead. Yes, they’ve been lied to and they’re pushing those lies. Yes, they’re pawns for the insurance industry. Yes, they’re a small percentage of a small percentage of people who identify themselves as Republicans. But they’re loud, they’re throwing a tantrum, and it’s working.

Why should the President do anything for you? Those of you who want health care reform haven’t been heard. You haven’t been seen. We should be steamrolling this thing. We are the majority for Christ sakes! This is exactly what we voted for last year. When this whole debate started, nearly three-quarters of the country wanted reform, with a public option! And now, we’re sitting on the sidelines crying because, once again, our Government is letting us down.

The fact is, Government isn’t letting us down. They’re responding to what they hear. No, it is we who are letting us down. We’re the ones who aren’t doing anything about it. We want everything to come to us. If we loose health care it’s because the insurance industry wanted it more. Yes, they have more money, but we have numbers! We should be in the street! If everybody who wanted health care reform was to go out and peacefully march, I promise you, the anti-reform party, and this debate, would be over.

But no, we wring our hands, blame the President and congress for selling us short, because, once again, they can’t do anything right. When actually, they’re answering the people that care enough to be heard, and it’s not you. It’s them. The same people we make fun of because they’re crazy, or stupid, or don’t make any sense are beating us silly. Ignorance and lies are winning and we’re letting it happen. For that, we should be ashamed.

If you were listening during the election, President Obama always said that he’s just one man and that he can’t make change without us. If we’re not going to stand up for what’s right; if we’re not going to let him know that we care, then why should he, or congress, bother. We don’t deserve change. In fact, through inaction, we deserve exactly what we get.

Woman at Town Hall Says “Heil Hitler” to Jew and Mocks Him as He Makes Pro-Health Care Reform Argument

Here’s what were fighting against folks.  I’m going to keep posting these until these dolts return to their caves and sulk to death in their own sadness and hate. 

Below is a clip of an Israeli man making an argument for health care reform by comparing our system to what they have in Israel.  During his argument, a woman can be heard off to the side saying “Heil Hitler!”  As he rightfully chastises her, he explains that he is there because he needs health insurance.  In a classy, four year old child move, she starts to mock him by fake sobbing like a baby.

Keep exercising your right of free speech, assholes.  You’re really doing a terrific job pushing rational folks towards the exits of your already shrinking tent.

Many thanks to Think Progress.

Hilarious!!! Barney Frank Puts It To a Nazi Believer

Finally!  A Congressman has the guts to stand up to the right’s nonsense.  A woman at Rep. Barney Frank’s (D-MA) made the mistake of asking him how he could support Obama’s Nazi agenda. 

Woah, boy.  GET READY FOR THE SMACKDOWN!!!

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

So What if Republicans are Winning the Message War! They Need to Be Rolled On - Screw Bipartisanship

It wasn’t all that long ago when I was pointing and laughing at Republicans.  In fact, I think it was just last week.  At one point in time, I believe I said that making fun of Republicans was like fishing in a barrel with dynamite.  It was too easy.

Yeah, well who’s laughing now?

Their little death panel scare has killed a meaningful provision that Republicans once championed.  At least, they championed before they became hell bent on killing reform.  The public option is, according to the press, all but dead.  Now, they’re dismantling these co-op programs, which nobody seems able to define.  Yep, they’re going for the jugular:

On Fox News yesterday, Sen. Jim DeMint (R-SC) agreed with Fox News’ Neil Cavuto’s claim that a co-op is really a “trojan horse”:

DEMINT: Whatever they call it Neil, this is a government takeover. They may try to call it a co-op. They can call it a public option, but you know they’re all on record saying they want a single payer government system, so any Republican now that helps them pass a bill is helping them pass a government takeover of health care. My hope is we can stop this and start over with some real reform. A number of us have been talking about ideas that we know would work, but unfortunately this administration and the Democrat majority, they really don’t want insurance reform at this point. What they want is more government control of our health care system.

“Any Republican senator who helps them pass something with a government stamp on it, the way they’re talking about, is, I think, just betraying the American people.”

Sure, start over with real reform.  Right.  Reform, as defined by Jim DeMint, is giving the insurance industry our tax money and leaving everything alone.  Save it, Jim.  You don’t have any ideas and you certainly don’t want reform, in any form.

Why are Americans falling for this?  I do not understand how the party that got us into this mess can be taken as credible.  Every single one of their plans has left this country weak and vulnerable.  Every one!  I do have to hand it to them, though.  They are masters of deflection and they own the message.

See, we had an election.  Democrats won that election.  Republicans are the minority because of two crushing defeats in 2006 and 2008.  Their supporters are the minority.  Dig through the noise, and rational people still think they’re crazy. 

Congressional Democrats!  Do not cave to these people!  They will never vote for you regardless of how you vote on health care, or climate change, or a million other things they hate.  As long as Democrats are in power, they will be convinced that the Constitution is under attack.  Never mind the fact that the Constitution was under attack every day for eight years under the last administration. 

Screw bipartisanship!  Roll on them!  It doesn’t matter if they don’t want to vote for it.  Own it!  It’s yours!!!  It’ll work, just like the VA and Medicare and will be a huge success.  I assure you, you will be better for it in the long run!  That includes 2010!

As for the rest of us, we’re not going to get anything we don’t fight for.  If you want shitty health care reform, by all means, please, continue to sit on your hands.  Remember, if you are going to allow a small percentage of a small percentage dictate what’s in the health care bill, then we deserve what we get.  But if you want meaningful reform, then let’s take it to the street and let them know what we want.  Remind those town hall protesters that they’re the minority.  Just because they get into a room with a bunch of like minded individuals doesn’t mean they are the majority.  It means that they care about it more than we do. 

Folks, it’s time to stand up and be counted. 

Monday, August 17, 2009

Scumbag Insurance Companies Laugh at Spineless Democrats

Look at this excerpt from an article I found at MarketWatch:

Somewhere in their respective wood-paneled corporate boardrooms, Angela Braly and Stephen Hemsley are breathing a sigh of relief -- or rubbing their hands in glee.

At the very least, the chief executives of WellPoint Inc. (WLP 53.63, +1.44, +2.76%) and UnitedHealth Group Inc. (UNH 28.99, +0.93, +3.31%) were rejoicing as their stock prices shot up nearly 4% in Monday trading. But don't be surprised if they're also doing that glee thing.

Why? The nation's two biggest health insurers and everyone else in the managed-care sector counted on the Democratic Party to do what it always does: cave in when the going gets tough. And just like clockwork, Democrats appear to be true to form.

Thanks, Chicken Shits.  I would laugh too if it wasn’t something as important as the future of health care.  It’s the same every single time.  Do-good Democrats try to do the right thing and play fair in the process.  Do-rotten Republicans and their legions of liars stir up a gullible, volatile segment of the population to scream at the top of their lungs.  And, as it says above, the going gets tough and Dems fold like a circus leaving town.  Embarrassing.

Congratulations, Town Hall Protester! You Win!

What a weekend for health care reform! First, it appears that the whole “Death Panel” scare business worked and our gutless representatives are talking about taking it off the table. Remember, this “death panel” was to originally pay for a consultation with your doctor to discuss your end-of-life wishes. You know, like in the event you can’t decide for yourself anymore and would rather make things easier for your family, unlike Terry Schiavo. Yeah, the Government was going to pay for that consultation. On top of that, the Administration is starting to flake on the Public Option! It appears that all the screaming coming from the spoiled brat section of the idiot right is working. By folding on these key points, our country is rewarding bad behavior. They’re reinforcing the fact that you can get anything you want by throwing a tantrum.

Alright, crybabies, you win. Like a parent with a three-year-old who’s throwing a tantrum because I won’t let him play with his toys, I’m going to give you, the town hall reform protester, what you want. I’m done. I can’t take the noise anymore. You can have it. You can have all of it. No health care reform. No new energy policy. Hell, let’s throw in Social Security too. No more Government intervention in anything. Let’s privatize the military, schools, police and fire. Everything will be privately owned. You have won. Just sit on your wealth while the world falls apart around you. That’s what you want, isn’t it? You don’t want to pay taxes, right? You don’t want corporate regulation, right? Have it. Have it all. You want a selfish, fend for yourself society, you got it.

But here’s the difference…I’m young and you’re not. I’ve got time to stockpile and prepare for freedom beyond my wildest dreams. You don’t.

It’ll be sweet because I’ll live in a super-secure, gated community that’ll keep the riffraff out. It’ll have huge, thick walls topped with barbed wire so those poor souls on the outside can’t get in. 24 hour security, known as the U.S. Army, will man the watch towers positioned at each corner, protecting the perimeter with the latest in high-powered weaponry. The best part is that I won’t know the starving masses are being gunned down thanks to advanced silencer technology. Brilliant!

I’ll have a private road that only I, and those that can afford it, use. The road will be equipped with high walls full of advertisements. This provides two advantages. First, I won’t be able to see the poor, wretched scum on the other side. Second, the advertisements will remind me just how good I have it. I feel better about myself already.

Of course, I will be fit as a fiddle as I will have the best health care money can buy. My hospital will shine like a diamond and will have state-of-the-art care. My America has the best health care system in the world! Those on the outside, not so much. Truth be told, they won’t live very long anyway, with the air quality being what it is. Corporations must make a profit, right? Air quality be damned! It doesn’t matter to me because I will be able to afford a gas mask! Ha!

The outside world is irrelevant thanks to the many walls in my life. The media will reinforce the fact that every day is a sunny day, unless of course there’s rain. In which case, people with sense (and dollars, he he) make very sure that we do not go outside. Don’t want to get rain sores, you know? Gosh. I would hope never to see some poor souls with rain sores. That would be so ghastly! Yuck!

Now, because I can afford the American dream, my children will attend the finest schools and be able to slide into jobs that allow them to continue to achieve the lifestyle they’ve come to expect. Everybody else will be stuck with underfunded public schools, which will be great. Let’s face it, the dumber they are, the less competition for me. Don’t want to be knocked off my high horse by a peasant, now do I? (oh, wait, we have this now.)

And while all this is going on, while I live high on my fend-for-myself hog, you, the town hall reform protester, who has everything they’ve fought so hard for, no Government intervention of any kind, will be dying a slow, painful death because you will not be able to afford the care and medications you will need. Your kids will be too busy complaining about how rotten everything is to care about you and they’ll be too stupid to do anything about it. After all, they’re so very easily distracted by celebrity news and, let’s face it, facts tend to be boring. You will be a sad, lonely, shell of the person you once were, lying in pain on the sofa. Forget about getting to a hospital. Outside hospitals are awful and the road to them is barely useable. You might be lucky enough to have a roof over your head, but there won’t be anything inside as the night gangs have stripped your home bare. Sorry to say, but those night gangs pretty much do what they want since the outside can’t afford security.

You can cry about it all you want, but nobody cares. It’s me first, remember? You obviously didn’t do what you were supposed to. You should have taken care of your business, otherwise, you wouldn’t be living like this, you bum. Don’t look to me for a handout! It’s what you wanted, remember?

So fight on, town hall protester! Kill every reform possible! Do everything you can to insure that nothing changes in this country! I’ll be ready and guarantee that I’ll forget about you when I’m safe and secure in my heavily fortified subdivision.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Lazy Sunday

I bring you three Sunday afternoon treats: I was thinking. Maybe we need some new message discipline on health care. Perhaps the administration should hire MC Ren speak for the Prez? 'Cuz Barry O is the final frontier!



Because if the White House lets Palin et al gain the upper hand in the message content, we may be one step closer to these guys making health care ads!



Thanks SarahCuda for adding to our country's Rational Discourse!

Sunday Morning Required Reading – Thoughts on Misplaced Republican Anger

This beautiful Sunday morning, I offer three articles that you must read.  I’ll offer them the same way I found them, which is working backwards, but the effect is the same.  First, there are two posts, here and here, from the Steve Benen at the Political Animal.  He shares an exchange he had with Bruce Bartlett, who worked for both Regan and Bush #1.  These exchanges were based on Bartlett’s article he wrote for the Daily Beast, which can be found here.

Bartlett’s statements are powerful.  Essentially, he says that angry conservatives have no credibility as their rage was absent during G. Dubs’ management during the country.  Until they, Republicans, accept and admit their mistakes, they should not be considered credible.

Good stuff and should be read immediately.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Andrew T.’s Late Late Late Show - “The Toxic Avenger”

We’re digging and finding gold!  Ladies and gentlemen…I give you…The Toxic Avenger!

Rational Discourse 3

TaliDan here. Tonight I want to bring to your attention something that has been bugging me for awhile. Its something that has been building for years, but it has been coming to light lately in the health care and climate change debates. There has been good news and some disturbing news recently. With more information and awareness, people can make better decisions and better policy will result. Whatever the political spectrum you fall under, this should be the desired outcome. Misleading information and lies do not help make a true market decision. Bad policy or even war can result from a misinf0rmed citizenry. We all lose in that game. Plus I get to weave in history, violence, and comedy starring President Eisenhower, Kill Bill, Rollerball, and a small town grocery store. You're Welcome.

Take the comments made by Palin on the death panels, and now being actively pushed by Chuck Grassley. It is not in the bill. It is laughable and sad. The "death panel" provision in the bill was also in the Medicare part D bill of 2003. It was voted on then by the same republicans that now say they are against it. Hmmm. This is lying and blatant false advertising. Could you imagine if Coca-Cola came out with an ad saying drinking Pepsi might kill you? Truth in Advertising rules should also apply to elected officials. Katie Couric nailed it with her rant the other day when she said "we can't let fear and frankly ignorance drown out serious debate". Paul Krugman also weighed in on the issue (here).

But that is only part of the problem. The other one, equally as scary, is Corporate Influence. You probably by now have heard of the idiotic comments made by Glenn Beck (too numerous to hyperlink to). Well thanks to some active citizens, several advertisers have pulled their ads from his show. Chalk that up to holding people and corporations accountable. Bravo.

We also now have the CEO of Whole Foods (Whole Paycheck we call it here) expressing his opinions against the public option. So be it. I have no problem with that, in fact its entirely acceptable. If a corporation wishes to take a stand on an issue, as long as they are open and honest about it, then the public has the option to not shop there. If sales decline or double the people will have at least spoken. At least we can hold them responsible. Hey, its a good time to weave in some art imitating life, plus I get to relive a moment from a kick ass movie. Imagine Budd as corporate influence and Larry the boss as we the people. "Fuckin with your cash is the only thing you kids seem to understand ok?" Yep I hear you loud and clear.


But what is more worrying is these corporate lobbyists for oil and health insurance posing as angry constituents. We have elections, we vote. The people we send to Congress represent our interests. If they don't, they get thrown out. Corporations' voices represent big money, but a smaller population. Yet they seem to carry a lot of weight. Nothing like governing to the smallest denominator. It seems that we not only have health care plants in the town halls with lobbying group talking points, we also have oil interests at climate change debates. These two articles should scare the crap out of you Here and Here. The game plan email is attached here.

And to think, its not like Corporations enjoy the same rights as individual voters right? Wrong. The Supreme Court may have the votes needed to expand corporate rights. This will be a huge decision and one that is worth watching. Even the dictionary says corporations are people. Man what ever happened to the Republicans? "We must guard against the unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, of the military-industrial complex. We must never let the weight of this combination endanger our liberties or democratic processes."


Wow. Thanks Andy Rooney. So we may be getting closer to a future ruled by corporations instead of nations. Whether by the lobbyists posing as angry voters, or by Supreme Court decree, it will be up to us to expose the real truth. Then we can at least have policy representing people's wishes instead of Big Corporate's interests. "Rollerball pointed out that the board members and directors of corporations aren't elected leaders, yet make decisions that control the economy and millions of lives." Fuckin' with your cash...Yep. I hope you are ready for it.


Because we all know that corporations have our best interests in mind, right?

Saturday Morning Cartoons - Road Runner in “The Solid Tin Coyote”

This is simply hilarious.  No set up required.  Enjoy!

Friday, August 14, 2009

Daily Show Highlights Glenn Beck’s Health Care Flip Flop

Damn video!  Saving the past for the future to see!  Arruuugghhh!  Damn history!

Today, Glenn Beck swears up and down that we have the best health care system in the world.  It’s the best!  Why would anybody want to take it away?  Is that how it goes, Glenn?  How about we go back to January 2008.  How did you feel about health care then?

The Daily Show With Jon Stewart Mon - Thurs 11p / 10c
Glenn Beck's Operation
www.thedailyshow.com
Daily Show
Full Episodes
Political Humor Spinal Tap Performance

Many thanks to Bob Cesca.

Hannity-Focus Group Fail!!! Say Protesters Get Bad Information from Fox News, Limbaugh!!!

Watch this piece of gold from Media Matters.  Hannity had a focus group on last night to discuss how they felt about the town hall protesters.  Apparently, these folks didn’t stick to Hannity’s script.

I Feel Good About Things Today

I don’t know if it was the Earth, Wind, and Fire, but I think I’m going to take a break from the outrage today (that is unless the News Junkie Post submission I wrote yesterday gets published today-but I was hot yesterday, so, there you go).  That might not be the best idea since the batshit right doesn’t take a break for nothing.  That said, I feel pretty good about everything today.  It seems that the media is finally catching up and accurately reporting the crazy and the nonsense lies.

I think that while writing my lone post from yesterday, I realized, after the fact, that these people, the nuts that are screaming at the top of their lungs, disrupting the town halls, are obsolete.  You know, like IBM Selectric typewriters.  Maybe obsolete is too strong of a word.  But for the first time in their adult lives, they are the minority and they don’t like it. 

On top of that, they don’t understand these proposals because they’ve been fed a a steady diet of low taxes and deregulation solve all problems.  They don’t know anything else.  So when that theory collapsed with the economy last fall, they couldn’t possibly blame the people they voted for.  No, that would admit guilt.  Instead, they blame the man that the sane part of the country chose to clean up the mess. 

I can hear them now…”These damn kids don’t know what the hell they’re doing to this country!  Obama is a socialist and he’s selling out the country!  These kids want to be coddled by the Government!  They’ve been snowed!  I’ll show them the truth!”  Cue links to Prison Planet, Red State, Fox Nation, and World Net Daily

We do know better, don’t we.  We know that, contrary to their claims, Government can work when we have good management.  Those that claim otherwise have spent the last 30+ years hiring incompetence.  If Government can’t do anything right, then it’s on them for poor voting choices.

That’s why today, unless something catastrophic happens, I’m going to lighten up.  I’m confident that in the end, we’re going to get some kind of health care reform, some kind of energy reform, and nickel and dime our way to a better society. 

Start Your Day the Right Way with Earth, Wind & Fire in “Sing a Song”

I want to wish everybody a happy Friday and start you off with a positive, happy song.  Enjoy!

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Why do Selfish Baby Boomers Insist on Ruining Things For Future Generations?

s-SPECTER-large Anybody else notice that the majority of the town hall protesters are old?  If I was to guess age, I’d guess mid-fifties and older.  I suppose we can call them Baby Boomers, yes?  Weren’t Baby Boomers supposed to change the world?  Isn’t what all that hippy crap was about?  Peace and love?  Fairness and equality?

The Baby Boomers were brought to us by what Tom Brokaw called “The Greatest Generation.”  My grandparents would be included in that group.  They learned the to value the dollar and the meaning of during the depression.  They put that knowledge to use during World War II.  They, through hard work, determination, and sacrifice, made this country a world powerhouse.  It seemed that they could do no wrong.

So what do they do?  They come home from war to produce the most spoiled, selfish generation this country has ever seen.  See, the Greatest Generation went out of their way to make sure their children had everything they desired.  This came with disastrous consequences.

First, they rebel from their parents, tell them that they’re square, and run off to live some hippy, weed drenched, communal fantasy.  Meanwhile, the haves go off to college and the have nots to go war.  Consequently, the have nots come home broken and the haves go on to take corporate jobs.  Because everybody was stoned, they run off and get married, only to find that after sobriety and a couple of kids, they realize that they don’t like the person they married, subsequently divorcing.  This leaves half of a new generation, my generation, screwed up due to lack of whole parental units.  Finally, the entire generation seemingly ditches the whole peace and love movement for the almighty dollar and sells out their children’s future for profits today.  Don’t believe me?  Watch any PBS retrospective on the 60s and notice how the most full blown hippy now looks like one of the Cleaver parents from “Leave it to Beaver.”

Now, this same generation, who, consequently, has been perpetrating generational theft (that’s right John McCain) on my generation my entire 37 years, doesn’t want to reform health care.  They don’t want to pay for somebody else and they’ll be Goddamned if there’re going to allow the Government to be involved.  But, for the love of God, don’t touch their Medicare benefits-Government administered Medicare benefits-that we all pay for. 

This self-centered selfishness knows no bounds.  Oh, and God forbid we ask them to give something up.  Their parents sacrificed during WWII, rationing everything from gas to nylons, all in the name of winning the war.  Today, we go to war and not only are we not asked to sacrifice to insure victory, we barely know there’s a war going on!  They paid for war with sacrifice.  We pay for ours with credit.

Now, understand, I know I’m being overly broad here.  I love my parents, aunts, uncles, co-workers and friends who are older than I am (you know who you are) and they shouldn’t be lumped into my generalization.  I also know that the protesters are a small percentage of the small percentage of people who identify with that group.  However, I can’t help but to get upset with the knowledge that I will be funding the health care for the same people that fight to deny my family a fair shake at quality care. 

I resent it.  For once, I wish they would think about not just their children, but their grandchildren.  Ultimately, it’s the grandchildren who will need it more than we do now. 

If you have a problem with my assessment of the Baby Boomer generation above, then why don’t you make it right by getting your hands out from under your ass and doing something about it.  Put some of that activism you all were so proud of in your youth towards something that really matters.  In this case, a healthier society.  I assure you, while my resentment is general and broad, it comes from somewhere and I’m not alone.  Restore honor to your generation and do what’s right!

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Fox News Runs Background Check on Little Girl Who Asked Question at President Obama’s Town Hall

Fox News continues to plummet through the floor of decency, straight to hell where their masters reside.

Today, because they don’t have anything better to cover, they have decided to run a background check on the little girl who posed a question to President Obama.

Of all the miserable, low life, dirty, no good motherfuckers.

Look at that heading, “Critics Question Makeup of Crowd at Obama Town Hall.”  No, fuck holes, you, Fox News, are questioning the makeup.  Why, because it was civil?  Because your lemming minions were unable to disrupt the proceedings? 

And because it was civil, you are going to accuse an 11 year old girl of being a plant.  That’s the only explanation you have, isn’t it?  Does that mean that if I ask a question at a civil town hall and Fox News doesn’t like it, are they going to check me out?  Let’s not forget about all the sheeple that watch your 24 hours of puke opinion.  You know, the ones that are carrying swastikas and toting firearms (yeah, it was legal, but the only thing he proved was that he was an asshole) to public events, one of them is bound crazy enough to do something about it. 

But that doesn’t bother Fox does it?  It’s free speech, isn’t it?  All right then, assholes.  How about we fuck with your cash instead?

Here’s a list and a petition you can sign.  Boycott these companies.  Money talks.

***UPDATE***

Apparently it’s not just Fox News who’s up in arms about this as the nutter blogs are freaking out about it as well.  Steve Benen at Political Animal reminds everybody:

Indeed, I'm a little surprised conservative bloggers would even consider this topic worthy of outrage. When Bush was president, public town-hall meetings were carefully pre-packaged, organized, controlled, scripted events. Public audiences were screened to make sure attendees agreed with the party line, and if White House officials didn't like a ticket-holder's bumper sticker or lapel pin, he/she was denied entry.

Ticket distribution was limited to local Republican Parties, and once in a while, Americans who wanted to participate in the town-hall meetings were required to sign "loyalty oaths." In some instances, a White House advance team would literally rehearse events in advance to make sure attendees said the right things to the president.

In contrast, President Obama deliberately sought out attendees yesterday who were skeptical of health care reform. "Kabuki"? Please.