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The Deadly Cost of Blocking Health Care Reform

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Posted on Dec 18, 2009
Howard Dean
AP / Charles Dharapak

Former Vermont Gov. Howard Dean answers a question at a public meeting on health care reform hosted by Dean and Rep. Jim Moran in Reston, Va., last August.

By Bill Boyarsky

The liberals attacking the Senate health reform bill must never have known real illness. They’ve never been fired at the age of 50 and left without health insurance. They’ve probably never known anyone who died for lack of health insurance.

Those are the only reasons I can think of for their last-minute and thoroughly despicable assault on the bill struggling through the Senate.

Spare me their attacks on President Barack Obama, who doesn’t measure up to their impossible standards. And spare me Howard Dean. I thought Joe Lieberman was the dumbest politician from New England until Dean urged Senate Democrats to vote against health reform.

These people are every bit as destructive as the Senate Republicans who spent Friday holding up a defense spending bill that included a pay raise for the troops.

Thousands of people are likely to die if this health care bill is not signed into law.

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That’s the conclusion of studies by the Urban Institute and the Institute of Medicine. Their predictions have been pretty much ignored as Obama’s Democratic critics whine about his failure to support the public option or the provision permitting those 55 and older to buy into Medicare.

The studies, based on census figures, looked at the years 2000 through 2006 and estimated that 137,000 died because they lacked health insurance. In 2006, 22,000 died. According to the studies, the death rate of the uninsured was 25 percent higher than that of the insured.

Washington Post blogger Ezra Klein, one of the sharpest journalists writing about the health fight, noted that “since the population of the uninsured grows every year, and so does the death toll, it surely would be higher [than 137,000].” He estimated the number would grow to 150,000 dead.

“The uninsured are less likely to seek early care,” he wrote. “They are less likely to get good care. They are less likely to return for follow-up care. They are less likely to afford the maintenance of chronic conditions. … Medicare saved lives. Medicaid saved lives. … And health-care reform will save lives, too. … And those who would be so cavalier as to close the door because of the public option or the Medicare buy-in, or the absence of either thing, should think long and hard about those numbers.”

I didn’t hear Dr. Howard Dean, speaking from the sidelines, talk about saving lives when he denounced the bill in the Senate. I just saw a disagreeable, disappointed politician, angry because Obama didn’t appoint him to be secretary of health and human services and didn’t support him for another term as national party chairman.

Then MSNBC jumped on the anti-Obama bandwagon, hoping to attract a big audience of liberals in its competition with right-wing Fox News. Along for the ride are a lot of liberal bloggers, sensing they can attract readers.

It’s infuriating watching the Senate Republicans waste time in their repetitive rants, holding up everything in an attempt to run out the clock and beat health reform that way. The Republican goal is clear: Kill this bill and set the stage for victories in the congressional election in 2010 and the presidential election in 2012.

But Democratic liberals are supposed to value human lives. Those who’ve chosen to take a stand against health reform are willing to let people die because the current bill isn’t exactly what they want.

This bill is better than anything in our present health care system. It will be improved in Senate-House conference. It will be further improved in years ahead. And it will save lives.


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drbhelthi's avatar

By drbhelthi, January 27, 2010 at 9:17 am Link to this comment

When leaders in the medical field report that licensed physicians are (currently) the #3 cause of death in the US, and when the #2 lady physician in the US wrote two years ago that licensed physicians were the #2 cause of death in the US, perhaps fewer trips to the “doctor´s office” instead of more are needed.

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By Liquor Store Larry, January 7, 2010 at 4:00 pm Link to this comment

drbhelthi - “Why would the murderers of Jesus of Nazareth want the true story revealed”?

1) To advance their business agendas when people realize the cleverness of saying “cross your feet, we only have 3 nails”?

2) In their hearts, they don’t like the Goyem?

3) They didn’t want people to believe that the universe was created by an all-powerful being who came down in the form of a cosmic Jewish Zombie who was his own father and could absolve you of sin and make you live forever if you ate his flesh and drank his blood and telepathically tell him you accept him as your master, so he could remove an evil force from your soul that came about as a result of a woman who was made from a rib and was convinced by a talking snake to eat from an evil magic tree?

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By ardee, January 7, 2010 at 3:38 am Link to this comment

There, there, “Doctor”, of course you see plots and conspiracies among any contrasting views. After all, its all you’ve got.

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By drbhelthi, January 7, 2010 at 12:55 am Link to this comment

“Official versions” always have a well-formed PR system to reinforce the distortions and fabrications. One worst-best example in recent history was/is the murder of JFK.

Researchers have amassed abundant information to prove that the official version is fabricated. Various former insiders have revealed that Lee Harvey Oswald was a long-time, faithful agent of the CIA. His CIA leadership sacrificed him, and a few other persons, attempting to solidify their fabrication.

Is it a wonder that hitler-types among jewish leadership employ identical methods in order to reinforce their false propaganda, and attack historians such as Schlomo Zand or Sand?  All their false propaganda, not just some of it. From events prior to Jesus of Nazareth, to His murder, to the falsification of following events, to their infiltration of the Federal Reserve and banking institutions in the western world, to the PR machine that governs AIPAC, to the scapegoating of all persons who support historical accuracy, and in a few cases the “final option” offered by CIA/MOSSAD. Why would the murderers of Jesus of Nazareth want the true story revealed? Or, any story that is factual that does not reinforce their fraudulent propaganda?

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By ardee, January 6, 2010 at 1:18 pm Link to this comment

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shlomo_Sand

The Invention of the Jewish People

Main article: The Invention of the Jewish People
[edit]Book’s topic
In his book Matai ve’ech humtza ha’am hayehudi? (The Invention of the Jewish People), “[Sand] tries to prove that the Jewish people never existed as a “nation-race” with a common origin, but rather is a colorful mix of groups that at various stages in history adopted the Jewish religion. He argues that for a number of Zionist ideologues, the mythical perception of the Jews as an ancient people led to truly racist thinking”.[6]
One component of Sand’s argument is that the people who were the original Jews living in Israel, contrary to what is official, accepted history, were not exiled following the Bar Kokhba revolt. He has suggested that much of the present day world Jewish population are individuals, and groups, who converted to Judaism at later periods. Additionally, he suggests that the story of the exile was a myth promoted by early Christians to recruit Jews to the new faith. Sand writes that “Christians wanted later generations of Jews to believe that their ancestors had been exiled as a punishment from God.”[7] Sand argues that most of the Jews were not exiled by the Romans, and were permitted to remain in the country. He puts the number of those exiled at tens of thousands at most. He further argues that many of the Jews converted to Islam following the Arab conquest, and were assimilated among the conquerors. He concludes that the progenitors of the Palestinian Arabs were Jews.[8]
edited…..

He also comments that: “It is true that I am an historian of France and Europe, and not of the ancient period. (...)”,[6] and that: “I’ve been criticised in Israel for writing about Jewish history when European history is my specialty.

Critics
Israel Bartal, dean of the humanities faculty of the Hebrew University, in a commentary published in Haaretz,[9] writes that Sand’s basic thesis and statements about Jewish historiography are “baseless”. Bartal answers to “Sand’s arguments (...) that no historian of the Jewish national movement has ever really believed that the origins of the Jews are ethnically and biologically “pure” [and that] Sand applies marginal positions to the entire body of Jewish historiography and, in doing so, denies the existence of the central positions in Jewish historical scholarship” Bartal refers to Sand’s overall treatment of Jewish sources as “embarrassing and humiliating.” He adds that “The kind of political intervention Sand is talking about, namely, a deliberate program designed to make Israelis forget the true biological origins of the Jews of Poland and Russia or a directive for the promotion of the story of the Jews’ exile from their homeland is pure fantasy.”.......edit
and calls the overall work “bizarre and incoherent.”[9]

*************************************************
I do like the concept that Israel belongs to all who live there rather than to only Jews. In general, however, th ebook is pretty well panned and the research ridiculed.

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By drbhelthi, January 6, 2010 at 12:30 pm Link to this comment

Arabian Sinbad, January 5 at 1:54 pm commented, - - “ I know for sure that I will not live to see my original homeland liberated from the marauders-occupiers that stole it, terrorized its population and dispossessed them.” “- - for after all, they are a bunch of psychopaths who were the victims in some other lands before they came to victimize the Palestinians.” 

Some of us are convinced by historical evidence that psychopathic puppets of NAZI-ism and its psychopathic “cohorts” are responsible for the current condition of the western world.  One group of “cohorts” might improve their insight by stepping outside the PR propaganda of their
system, to become acquainted with Schlomo Zand, teacher at Tel Aviv University, who wrote a book, “When and How Was the Jewish People Invented?”

Incorporating some reality into ones behavior helps. Ventilating ones religious hate, by scapegoating those who purvey accurate information against a destructive religious system, also provides some relief to such persons. However, posting an occasional comment with quasi-accurate information only briefly distracts from ones pattern of scapegoating. It does not disguise the pattern of scapegoating.

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By ardee, January 5, 2010 at 4:59 am Link to this comment

A person who monitors other´s comments on a forum, scapegoats and belittles the comments of others, acting as a policeman-type, would do well to return to ones psychiatrist for an increase in the thorazine prescription.

A person who seeks honest opinion, backed up by links and citings would be an asset to this forum. One who posts the ineffable stuff of psychosis should expect to be labeled a time waster if not a fraud or worse.

As this forum is, after all, a community of sorts, and as ,like any community, there would be standards, it is a simple fact that you, especially you, should be held to those standards.

It is pretty damn silly to expect your crap that anyone opposing your irrational views of the world and its events must, perforce, be working for the insidious forces that are under your bed.

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By JDmysticDJ, January 4, 2010 at 8:47 am Link to this comment

KDelphi

O.K. you win, I’ve been irrational. The best thing we can do is turn everything over to the most fascist among us, and “Neolibcons.” The sooner they destroy everything, the sooner we’ll be able to start over again from ground zero.

Certainly the proto-fascists and the “Neolibcons” will attempt a prolonged repression, but the best course of action for us is to abandon any hope of painfully slow, and gradual change.

I’m more pessimistic than you are. You apparently have hope for an alternative to the changeishers.

Perhaps I’m being too negative; maybe a coalition between the hoped for alternative, and the changeishers would be effective at bringing gradual change.

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By JDmysticDJ, January 4, 2010 at 8:38 am Link to this comment

KDelphi

O.K. you win, I’ve been irrational. The best thing we can do is turn everything over to the most fascist among us, and “Neolibcons.” The sooner they destroy everything, the sooner we’ll be able to start over again from ground zero.

Certainly the proto-fascists and the “Neolibcons” will attempt a prolonged repression, but the best course of action for us is to abandon any hope of painfully slow, and gradual “changeish.”

I’m more pessimistic than you are. You apparently have hope for an alternative to the changeishers.

Perhaps I’m being too negative; maybe a coalition between the hoped for alternative, and the changeishers would be effective at bringing gradual change.

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By drbhelthi, December 28, 2009 at 10:06 am Link to this comment

Psychotics and borderline psychotics have nothing to contribute with logic value.  They can only critique and scapegoat and attempt to demean others. In so doing, they display their inadequacies and desire for power that they do not have. Naturally when they do the bidding of their string-pullers, they perceive some of the power of their string-pullers.

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By Liquor Store Larry, December 28, 2009 at 9:40 am Link to this comment

Sorry drbhelthi - Ardee has ya dead to rights! You’re a fruitcake! Happy New Year!

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By drbhelthi, December 28, 2009 at 5:09 am Link to this comment

Perhaps a re-evaluation for one of the more recent drugs that has fewer side-effects, and is a bit more effective in dealing with psychosis would be in order.

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By drbhelthi, December 28, 2009 at 5:04 am Link to this comment

A person who monitors other´s comments on a forum, scapegoats and belittles the comments of others, acting as a policeman-type, would do well to return to ones psychiatrist for an increase in the thorazine prescription.

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By ardee, December 28, 2009 at 4:40 am Link to this comment

Persons who provide accurate information, ideas that conflict with the propaganda of NewWorldOrder propagandists, are consistently critiqued with attempted scapegoating.

***********************

The above definition would certainly not apply to the crap you attempt to foist upon this forum.

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By drbhelthi, December 28, 2009 at 3:55 am Link to this comment

Throughout Truthdig and similar commentaries, propaganda pimps redundantly attempt to scapegoat.  Persons who provide accurate information, ideas that conflict with the propaganda of NewWorldOrder propagandists, are consistently critiqued with attempted scapegoating.

Altruistic writers of Jewish lineage have described how they have been scapegoated by their own lineage. The MO of such propagandists is unmistakable: they consistently scapegoat altruists !

Such propagandists have no freedom to comment.
They are puppets of their string-pullers (and they know it).

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By ardee, December 26, 2009 at 3:52 pm Link to this comment

drbhelthi, December 26 at 1:25 pm #

You think that an attempt to label those who plainly see you as insane as “working for the American Nazi/Illuminati” somehow portrays you as more sane?

Nope, sorry, you are crazy as a bedbug.

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By KDelphi, December 26, 2009 at 3:20 pm Link to this comment

anotherview..this bill would make medicaid more accessible (raise the levels to , I think, 130% of poverty) but will surely cut benefits for those of us on medicaid, as it is an unfunded mandate for states…the LAST thing medicaid needs is more cuts to benefits! My surgeon , at a major medical center, where hs is on salary, btw, says it will reduce poor peoples’ access to quality care.

JDmysticDJ—I find your arguments very short of compelling. “things could be worse”, “its all we can get”, “the Dems are trying” are all bullshit. They are bought and paid for. GOP are too….but the Dems implied some kind of “change” that they never had any intention of delivering, In 2010, they will pay the price. Unfortunately, so will all of us.

How can you possibly quantify how many “lives will be saved” when youre turning the health care of the American people over to a Wall St brokered, immoral entity like the insurance indutry? It is truly one of the stupidest things I’ve ever seen politicians do.

If it would “save lives” why doesnt it go into effect right now? Because Dems are terrified of how people will respond when they find out that they are yet MORE enslaved by the medical industrial complex through this legislation. It will be like the “credit care bill of rights” and the lame-ass
financial reforms” and more lame-ass “we’ll think about it”
of Copenhagen…neo-liberals make things worse with their half-assed attempts…they need to nut up or shut up. It just leaves the least powerful of their
“constituents” at the mercy of the immoral “
free market”.

Until people have choices more numerous than neolibcons, nothing will “
changeish”

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By KDelphi, December 26, 2009 at 3:05 pm Link to this comment

Why does every thread here end up with people talking about Jews?

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By Liquor Store Larry, December 26, 2009 at 9:45 am Link to this comment

“Jewish Nazis who control the world”!  Who woulda thunk it? Somewhere Mel Brooks is laughing out loud!

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By drbhelthi, December 26, 2009 at 9:25 am Link to this comment

Freedom of speech was acquired many years ago, before the NAZI/illuminati began to overtake the USofA during WWII.  Nor am I responsible for the naivete´, ignorance or stupidity of commentors who are not up-to-date.

The only persons who are obligated to critique comments that do not support the NewWorldOrder direction, and attempt to scapegoat the writers of such comments, are the hired pimps of the organizations that support the NAZI/illuminta propaganda, the NewWorldOrder.

The remainder of us choose to comment or not comment, freely, voluntarily, at no expense of any type to us.  Paid propagandists, who critique and scapegoat other commentors, neither have access to nor enjoy this freedom. They are required to do the bidding of their „masters.“

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By Liquor Store Larry, December 26, 2009 at 9:03 am Link to this comment

“Illumanati”?  Is that an Italian sports car?

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By ardee, December 26, 2009 at 8:21 am Link to this comment

JDmysticDJ, December 26 at 10:33 am

One thinks that the usual posture after reading the efforts of this rather peculiar fellow is mouth agape, eyes wide in wonder.

I understand that there is a broad spectrum of belief systems out there but the fringe of that spectrum is an ever more scary and unreal place indeed.

Overall, though, the scrolling past his surrealistic view of reality is a small price to pay for freedom of speech.

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By JDmysticDJ, December 26, 2009 at 6:33 am Link to this comment

Drbhelthi

Regarding your most recent post.

No Comment.

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By drbhelthi, December 26, 2009 at 2:19 am Link to this comment

Comprehending the procedural working of the US government requires more than five grains of brain. Having a background in jurisprudence helps. However, discerning how the US gov. works, via pragmatic observation, is readily accomplished with five grains of brain.  Bribery, blackmail, intimidation, lobbying and gravytrains are key-words.

For me, the process is similar to folk who dump all “jews” into one pot, then apply the “israeli” procedure of scapegoating to the entire group. It simply isnt accurate. The israeli tribe has become as diversified as other “tribes.”  Among them are folk whose offspring are victims of the illuminati leadership, which victimizes the entire family.  These folk loathe and oppose the current efforts of their illuminati leadership, who are commiting genocide on their Palestinean cousins.  However, actively opposing such while being indigenous to the territory “Israel,” is not a safe position to exercise;  – and, its getting unsafer in the USA.

The false zionists, who are classified by social scientists as members of the “grouping,” illuminati, are the murderers.  This is the same grouping that has overtaken the finances of the western world, who consider themselves to be “ordained” to overtake and rule the world.  The Ted Gunderson Chronicles provide well-documented, background information.  Basically, the “illuminati” group has failed to valuate its “source of ordination.”  They are not taking their guidance from the same source as three thousand years ago. 

Meanwhile, there is the “Nobel Committee.”  This committee distorts its value system, and draws premature closure with its awardees.  Thus, it is able to “dump” the money at its disposal, while supporting politically-elite vultures, chalking up a few political points for itself.  This committee would do itself and the world a vast honor by withdrawing the prize from comrade Al Gore and comrade Hussein Obama, both of whom deserve a “bundle of switches.”  Certainly not a Nobel Prize!

Sometimes, establishing a predecent is wholesome for everyone involved.

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By mandinka, December 25, 2009 at 8:26 pm Link to this comment

maybe the reason why some oppose it is its bogus on its face. Rather than actually fix the system via Tort reform and save $500 Billion a year. The dems opted to insure their biggest campaign donors would be left unharmed and able to continue to force the system to continue its upward cost trajectory.
This bill wasn’t about healthcare but rather to bolster baraks poll ratings fortunately the public isn’t dumb and with the vast majority against the bill his numbers can only go lower

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By Liquor Store Larry, December 25, 2009 at 10:25 am Link to this comment

Clintonius - fair enough but again, I start from the perspective that race has little to do with health care and I ONLY raised the issue because someone ELSE suggested that Lieberman’s motivation for taking positions and/or “grandstanding” if you will, was racially or in this ethnically motivated. I see no evidence that Lieberman’s positions or the positions of any of the other players in the health care debate’s motivation has anything to do with race.

It was someone who posted before me and elicited my response who said that “Lieberman voted against the Medicare option because he wants to weaken Obama’s presidency so that he, Obama, will have less influence in the middle east”! There is no basis for such a remark and it was nothing more than a cheap shot at the Jews.

I consider that quite a stretch and Lieberman, whatever his flaws has not minced words or been shy about expressing his views on the middle east. I am no Zionist and I think the fanatic settlers are Israel’s greatest problem and the closest thing that Israel has to Muslims, none the less, again, I think the comment that I responded to speaks for itself.

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By clintonius, December 25, 2009 at 9:14 am Link to this comment

truthdigger>>>>>I have no love for Schumer, but he
would have voted for a public option. Let’s give him
credit where credit is due. 

liquorstorelarry>>>>>Agreed, trying to blame this on
any one race or creed is beyond absurd. But I think the
best way to expose this irrationality is not to by use
of “anti-semite”, but by showing the true champions
from said race and creed who are in the trenches, doing
everything they can to give us a voice in this debate.

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By drbhelthi, December 25, 2009 at 12:46 am Link to this comment

Not only “this” bill, but “health care” is a sham, anyway you view it.  For me, a very insightful book by Derrick Lonsdale, MD, “Why I Left Orthodox Medicine” was published about fifteen years ago. After forty years in various “branches” of medicine, he explained a chronology of his experiences, while moving into the “nutrition” area.

A few hundred thousand physicians have shared similar experiences to physician Lonsdale.  Very few have the courage to put their experiences in print.  They do not care to experience similar treatment to that of Ignaz Semmelweis, MD, of Austria, who “invented” washing hands between patients.  The “leadership” of Dr. Semmelweis fired him, withdrew his license, he lost his family, and ultimately his life.  He “invented” a procedure for which his leadership could not claim ownership, and which has long since become law. 

Many have discovered or re-discovered cures for various cancers, only to have been criticized, fired or otherwise suppressed by their “leadership.”  While the word, oncology, cleanly viewed, is a nonsequitur, it represents a branch of money grubbing vultures.  The only “research” involved is, how to continue the gravy-train.

To the large percentage of physicians who take the oath seriously, and do their best to improve the health of their patients, sometimes under threat of their “leadership,”  CONGRATULATIONS !  Hang in there, Folks !  You are great !  The world needs many more of you.

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By drbhelthi, December 24, 2009 at 2:38 pm Link to this comment

After 39 years in practice, I continue to find it interesting that we often answer our own questions, sometimes to gain insight, much later. Occasionally, to feel sort of stupid that our insight was so slow - - .

However, I typically parrot information that folk much smarter and more experienced have already published in their homepages.
Of course, not all folk who read these comments are up to date on the available information. And of course, some are too closed-minded to comprehend what they read either here, or elsewhere.

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By Russ, December 24, 2009 at 12:51 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

It seems to me that most of the commentators on this op-ed piece don’t even know how our government works. When the bill goes into reconciliation, the deficiencies of the Senate and House bills can both be pulled out. Then it will go back to the Senate for a vote that only needs 51 to pass. Any questions. I am fairly disappointed with the Senate bill and folks like Lieberman, Mary Landrieau and Ben Nelson are beyond contempt. They make the Democratic Party look very bad indeed. But that is how government work. Backroom deals! That’s how it’s always been and I don’t think that will ever change. As for the GOP, it has always been the party of obstruction and obsfucation. Look at the years and tax dollars wasted on the Whitewater “investigation.” But they shot themselves in the foot when they impeached Clinton over a bj in the Oval Office. As if he’s the first president to behave in this manner. Look at Bush the First and his long-time mistress. Why doesn’t anyone talk about that? Or Eisenhauer and his secretary/bedmate? The GOP and xtian-Right are hypocrites and while I abhore the Senate bill in the current form, I hope it will be improved during reconcilliation. That’s how our government works. People say Obama was born in Kenya. What about McCain and his doctored birth certificate. He was born in Panama! It’s not a perfect bill. It’s a rather crappy one. But it’s a start. Anyone who knows the history of civil rights legislation knows that it did not begin with one bill alone. I’m done. Political discourse has reached an all time low thanks to Limbaugh, Beck, O’Reily, Coulter, ad nauseum. You can thank them for dragging this country through the mud.

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By JDmysticDJ, December 24, 2009 at 11:48 am Link to this comment

Drbhelthi

I worked for Julie Gerberding doing a study for the CDC regarding childhood immunizations. We interviewed tens of thousands people all over the United States. Julies’ going for the money and the power and authority that comes with it is all too typical, but have you noticed how diseases like Polio, Tuberculosis, Diphtheria, Pertussis, and others, are no longer the problem they once were?

Julies’ covering up the dangers of certain Merck drugs in order advance her career is, I suppose, not beyond the realm of possibility, but what does this have to do with the current health care legislation?

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By JDmysticDJ, December 24, 2009 at 10:23 am Link to this comment

Drbhelthi

You say,

“How many have had heart-attacks that were not predictable? Or stabbed themselves 22
times while committing “suicide”?  Or are being confined “for their own safety” in various undisclosed lockups?”

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By JDmysticDJ, December 24, 2009 at 10:11 am Link to this comment

Drbhelthi

I was thinking about responding to your comment. Then I came to my senses, people like you drive me a little crazy sometimes.

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By drbhelthi, December 24, 2009 at 10:06 am Link to this comment

Well said, Warrior !
Instead of “health,” increasingly in the USA, the words, “illness and death” can be more accurately substituted. Thanks to the “US Congress, the USFDA and the CDC.

The flouride and aspartame poisoning rolls on, with support of the human (?) leadership of the USFDA, who are charged with protecting the
health of US inhabitants? Then there is the CDC, active supporter of vaccines. The 7-yr chief, a strong supporter of vaccines, recently named
president of Merck Vaccines, effective January 2010.
http://adventuresinautism.blogspot.com/2009/12/julie-gerberding-named-head-of-merck.html

Among Merck “vaccines,” is Gardasil, alleged to do something that has not been proven, not needed anyway, but which has lamed numerous teenage females, and precipitated several deaths.
Merck publicized a PR article, re-stating its commitment to the use of vaccines to prevent disease and save lives. Good Pr ! If it were only true - -.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=edikv0zbAlU
Statistics reveal that vaccines have never worked. Locations where “vaccines” were most widely used is where the injected viruses subsequently broke out in concentration! The myth about vaccines is simply too much. Sort of like “chemotherapy”
which is not therapeutic and doesn´t work, while cures are suppressed by Oncology, generally by “medicine”. 

“Once upon a time, I was - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
- - - - - - - ” 
What?
A Josef Mengele MD type who pissed on the oath, disregarded available statistics, and willfully defrauded my patients and the entire world ?  But, I had a great salary, and was famous!!!!!

The wealth of pharaohs remained in their coffins.

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By Mestizo Warrior, December 24, 2009 at 7:05 am Link to this comment

For the past three years I worked diligently for passage of H.R. 676, the Medicare For All Bill only to see a tag team of both Republican and Democratic sell outs refuse to put the issue “on the table!”

Thousands of Americans die every year because their HMO denies them needed treatment or they just cannot afford the cost! Thousands of others are forced into bankruptcy due to catastrophic illness. In fact this is the primary reason for individual bankruptcy. So where is the concern for the people from our esteemed leaders? Why does Congress and the White House refuse to expose the greed and corruption of the so-called “free market” healthcare system? The answer lies in the fact that our congressional leaders along with the commander in chief are all bought off by the healthcare cartel to assure that profiteering at our expense continues! This is why I support killing this bill! It stinks and no one gains anything except the CEOs of the healthcare mafia! KILL THE BILL!

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By drbhelthi, December 24, 2009 at 5:40 am Link to this comment

The concept of thousands of Americans will die if they do not
get the medical care provided by the current “Health” bill ?

This concept came from the same brewing pot as comrade Al
Gores climate-warming hocus-pocus.`

Passing a bill that mandates something the targeted poor must
pay for, but cannot afford, is more gravy for the crooks that
originally put the bill together. 

It is as equally smart as deploying 50,000 more US troops to
Afghanistan.

- - gotta keep that death-machine rolling, gotta keep the
profits for the military-industrial NAZIs at max.,

no decrease in profitability or colonization is permissable.

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By drbhelthi, December 24, 2009 at 4:46 am Link to this comment

- I wonder what percentage of the “poor and downtrodden” of
the world still consider Mr. Hussein Obama of Kenya to be
their “HERO”? 

Electing “real” representatives to the reverse-dealing US
ssergnoc (congress) is a nice idea. However, candidates
require a few million pocket money and approval of the higher
level of crooks even to get on a state ballot.

Stealing from the poor to turn-over to the rich is not
exactly what the naive´ hero-seeking folk of the world
expected from comrade Hussein Obama from Kenya. And, what
happened to all the Americans with African heritage who were
trying to reveal Obamas birthplace?  How many have had heart-
attacks that were not predictable? Or stabbed themselves 22
times while committing “suicide”?  Or are being confined “for
their own safety” in various undisclosed lockups?

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By JDmysticDJ, December 23, 2009 at 11:35 pm Link to this comment

All you Black Dog Democrats better wake up. People like you and me are in the minority, we lack political power, get it, we don’t have the political power to get what we want. Who has the political power? Well of course, it’s the corporatists, but as far as this health care legislation goes, its 40 Republicans and handful of conservative democrats who have shaped the current legislation.

This legislation is rotten, but it’s the only legislation that could be passed under the current political realities. Boyarsky’s article provides scientific studies which show the consequences of people not having health care.

“Thousands of people are likely to die if “this” health care bill is not signed into law. That’s the conclusion of studies by the Urban Institute and the Institute of Medicine.” “The studies, based on census figures, looked at the years 2000 through 2006 and estimated that 137,000 died because they lacked health insurance. In 2006, 22,000 died”

Whether you want to admit it or not, the current legislation will save lives. Are your unachievable demands more important to you than the lives that will be saved? Is it more important to YOU to show everyone how badly our political system sucks, than it is to accept legislation that will actually accomplish something?

Obama and others, failed to put single payer on the table. Why? Frequently, when you hear democrats give an interview about health care, the first thing they say is, “I prefer a single payer but…” Like it or not; It’s about political realities. These democrats are not as progressive as we would like them to be, but WTF, do you want Palin, or some other heartless, stupid, republican ideologue to take office.

Everywhere, blogs, radio, T.V. progressives (and republicans) are screaming bloody murder about this legislation. Do you think this noise is not bleeding out to a less informed apolitical electorate? Do you think the polls are not reflecting this noise? Do you think there are not republicans on this thread who are gleefully joining in on the bashing? How does it feel to be standing shoulder to shoulder with them, destroying your only hope of progressive change?

My advice to you is to listen to Kucinich, Sanders, and Feingold. Unless you just want to get your jollies spreading your nihilism.

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By Liquor Store Larry, December 23, 2009 at 9:16 pm Link to this comment

“I just saw President’s Obama’s arrogant response to those who don’t like the bill, and though I voted for him, I’ve completely lost respect for him.  Beyond his repeated betrayals of his promise of change, his attitude is contemptible coming from a man who was elected with overwhelming grass roots support”

THUNDEROUS APPLAUSE AND I CAN ADD NOTHING TO DO THIS!

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By anotherview, December 23, 2009 at 8:43 pm Link to this comment

I’m a liberal become progressive who opposes the current health bill.  have worked all my life, but I lost my job a year ago when my company closed the office in my area.  Last summer I had major surgery for a crisis in a chronic condition I have suffered from all my life.  I’m almost 60 years old and yes, I’m scared.  That doesn’t mean that the bill in congress right now is going to help me.  When my COBRA ends in mid 2010, I don’t know what will happen. 

Hopefully I will get a job with health insurance that covers pre-existing conditions.  Even with the bill, there are not constraints on what they could charge a new employer for someone my age, much less with a pre-existing condition.  If I don’t get a job, I will have to give up my house and find someone to move in with if I want to get medicaid.  The new bill won’t kick in till 2014. 

By 2015 I will become eligible for Medicare, but the prices will have risen precipitously and the program will cover less and pay less to providers.  In fact, the Medicare situation may not matter as I am unlikely to make it to 2014 or 2015 without health care that includes some expensive medications, and I’m not at all sure I’m going to get it. 

Personally, I sincerely hope the current health care initiative dies in the next round so Congress can have a chance to do something that will actually help Americans (yes, including me) instead of just robbing us to give a bonanza to the health care insurance industry. 

I just saw President’s Obama’s arrogant response to those who don’t like the bill, and though I voted for him, I’ve completely lost respect for him.  Beyond his repeated betrayals of his promise of change, his attitude is contemptible coming from a man who was elected with overwhelming grass roots support.

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By KDelphi, December 23, 2009 at 2:55 pm Link to this comment

djnoll—Bravo! Youre not completely alone, but that doesnt help much…

Liquor Store Larry—I am not a Communist, but, I think you have to do a little better than “communism is just plain wrong”...why is it “just plain wrong”? How is the “free mkt” “right”? and how do you know?


DieDaily—thanks, I got one part wrong (the cost) more like $35,0000..but it will change…it will go higher in direct proportion to how much money the insurance industry gives Dems

Ive been on this thing for 25 yrs, Bill, thru work and my own expericne….

M E—the worst of it is, that, “if youre too poor to buy it”, you can file to “opt out”—WHAT A OBVIOUS devbice to prove that this bill had NOTHING to do with insuring the uninsured or thepoor!! The problem is not the inability to BUY insurance—it is the price, dumbass Dems! If the rich dont have insurance they pay cash!

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By djnoll, December 23, 2009 at 12:58 pm Link to this comment

I have to take exception to Mr. Boyarsky’s opening comments:  The liberals attacking the Senate health reform bill must never have known real illness. They’ve never been fired at the age of 50 and left without health insurance. They’ve probably never known anyone who died for lack of health insurance.

Sir, I have known real illness, am over 50 when I was disabled and left without insurance, and I have known people who died not from lack of insurance, but because of insurance.  I have been left crippled and disabled because of health insurance hacks and quacks.  So do not tell me, Sir, that I do not know bad health care reform when I see it!  I know it only too well, as does Dr. Dean.

This bill is nothing but a Christmas gift from Joe Lieberman, cowardly corporate democrats, and theGOP to the insurance industry.  Try looking at the bill from the perspective of those of us who will not qualify for subsidies, whose Medicare benefits will be cut under the Senate bill, whose unemployed spouses will not qualify for subsidies either because of what little income we do have, and that because of my pre-existing conditions and my age, any policy we do get can have premiums up to 5 times greater than other people. 

Now on top of that you find it acceptable to fine me and my husband for not having paid this extortion.  The cheapest policy at the moment that we could find that would cover me, my husband, and his two children is more than 40% of our household income, and that is in addition to the new Medicare payment I must make that is 10% of my disability income!  that is a total of 50% of our income for something we will probably not use except for catastrophic illness because the deductible it too high and the co-pays unaffordable.

This Congress, and apparently this White House, so not care about anything except their re-election or their corporate paymasters. The American People no longer fit into their agendas - and that is something that we will all regret unless we become once again active and protest this bill and put an end to it.  My greatest fantasy (and yes, I know it is a fantasy, so no comments are necessary) is that the President vetoes the final bill - then names names of those who gutted his original promise through partisanship and corporate interest, starting with himself and his unwillingness to support the People’s interests strongly.  He should list GOP and Blue Dog Democrats by name, how much they were paid by lobbyists and other groups, single out the Catholic and Mormon Churches for their attacks on things in the bill, and directly indict publicly the likes of Sarah Palin, the Tea Party and their GOP fanatical supporters.  Of course, that would be impossible.  Oh well! It is a nice fantasy!

This bill is atrocious and should be killed now.  We should then overwhelmingly vote in 2010 to send real progressives to Congress - ones who are supported by only public contributions, not corporate - and then demand real accountability on bills that create real health care reform, get us out of these wars, create better safety nets, and create jobs and other important projects.  Until we, the American People, create such a Congress, this President, or any president who ran on his kind of platform, will never produce any decent legislation. We do this by abandoning the parties; protesting the current media thrall with the Becks of this world; and putting up candidates who will actually work to create fiscally responsible programs that are realistic while meeting the social needs of the people.  It is possible, but it takes work and commitment.

The DNC needs non-Clinton, new leadership; the White House staff needs to be cleaned out of Emanuel and his corporate hacks; and the Congress needs the likes of the Blue Dogs and the Pelosi-Reid leadership sent packing.  Then maybe, just maybe, we might get a decent health care bill that offers real change and not punitive fines and abandonment to insurance company greed.

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By oakland steve, December 23, 2009 at 12:41 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I am a 62 year old veteran (no service-related disability) who was laid off 19 months ago.  I have a pacemaker that was monitored every 8 weeks while I had insurance.  Since my work related insurance has ceased, I have not had any contact with a Cardiologists or any health professionals as I am essentially uninsurable (pre-existing condition). For months, I have been calling and writing and emailing and signing on-line messages for single-payer and similar schemes (so I am NOT a last minute participant, Bill). 

Nevertheless, this bill is an absolute disaster; I hope it’s killed. Dead. 

Notwithstanding the lack of wisdom in only publishing opinions that preach to the choir, this name-calling, mean spirited attack on those who question the honesty of this dreadful Senate bill and its “progressive” presidential sponsor, has convinced this reader that TruthDig can go directly to Bill Boyarsky (do NOT stop at this reader) for year-end contributions. 

Obama has destroyed the international goodwill that accompanied his election faster than George Bush destroyed the post-9/11 goodwill that he enjoyed. Yes, he could…and did.

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By M.E., December 23, 2009 at 12:18 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Take note: I’m 45, mostly be called leftist, have never had health care - that’s never. I was gainfully employed in a series of independent contractor positions until the current recession. I am now on General Assistance and food stamps. I still wouldn’t support this abomination. Their solution to getting health insurance to poor people. Make it mandatory for them to buy it so the insurance companies can get richer and then still deny the coverage. Think they won’t? People like me don’t have the $$$ for the legal battle and they know it. With an opening like that, Mr. Boyarsky should explain what exactly he knows about poverty in the article but does not.

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By Jim Yell, December 23, 2009 at 9:55 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I don’t know what Mr. Boyarsky was smoking when he wrote this aricle, but it must have been some weird stuff.

I have read many commentators on the bill pending and it is wonderful. It succeeds in doing away with poverty and poor wages by outlawing people form being too poor to buy over priced for profit heatlh insurance. Never mind rent on a place to park your hat, never mind food, we eat too much anyway, never mind education, recreation——-you know having enough to participate in life. First you pay for over priced insurance that is just as likely to bankrupt a person as it is to provide health care.

Barack has morphed into Bush and what happened to his intellegence. He keeps bragging about bailing out the investment sector, but they have abused the money and the tax payer is likely not to have the income to pay for it. This is a bigger mess than even baby bush managed to do, although he still has the credit for having started the downward spiral. He and God apparently. Who needs enemies when we have friends such as these.

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By Don Pelton, December 23, 2009 at 7:15 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

This would be a more credible article if Boyarsky had
engaged Dean’s arguments, rather than accusing him
and others of venal motives (Dean is disgruntled
because Obama didn’t appoint him head of HHS, or re-
appoint him chairman of the national party; MSNBC is
only after liberal viewers; bloggers are only seeking
liberal readers).

This is simplistic and lazy.

More credible—but admittedly more difficult—
would be to examine the principled concerns of Dean
and others, who feel that the current Senate bill
could make the problem worse, since those who
currently cannot afford health care may well still
not be able to afford it (as in Massachusetts)when
threatened with a penalty.

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By depelton, December 23, 2009 at 7:03 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

This would be a more credible article if Boyarsky
didn’t ascribe venal motives to everyone with whom he
disagrees: Dean is just disgruntled because Obama
didn’t appoint him head of HHS, or re-appoint him
chair of the national party; MSNBC just wants more
liberal viewers; bloggers just want more liberal
readers.

This is simplistic and lazy.

It would have been more credible—but admittedly
more effort—to consider the principled objections
of Dean and others who argue that the current Senate
bill could make matters worse, since those who
currently cannot afford health insurance may still
not be able to afford it even when threatened by a
fine.

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By drbhelthi, December 23, 2009 at 6:33 am Link to this comment

Death because they did not have “health insurance”? Just a bit simplistic, viewing from my side of the fence.  How about the hundreds in the USA and Europe who have been lamed and killed by the poisons in the alleged Swine Flu vaccine?  Are their afflictions and deaths attributable to “no health insurance”?

Wonderful that we have a few noble “jewish” folk, or any noble folk, regardless of family heritage, in the US Congress. Too bad they will not be able to offset the ignoble efforts of the ignoble “jewish” folk that manipulate the Federal Reserve.

Being over seven trillion dollars in debt, why does Mr. Hussein Obama and the US Congress not offer health insurance to all native Africans, also? At least to Kenya, Mr. O. Obamas birthright?  What is a few more trillion in debt, with quasi-worthless paper dollars, anyway? Be prepared for Jan-Feb 2010, the predicted “bottom-out”.

Health insurance will not provide any help for this situation.

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By spktruth200, December 23, 2009 at 5:51 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Who is this guy Boyarsky to tell real progressives who have been working on this for decades, to stop whining. This bill is atrocious and we have the guts along with doctors at PNHP.org (the fastest growing doctors organization in the country) to tell the damn truth. There are nurses organizations nationwide who see this fraud for what it is. Obama never opened his mouth on the issue, he permitted Rahm and David Axelrod to do their Chicago styled deals, while Axelrods former PR company raked in $28 million. Spare me Mr. Boyarsky, we progressives are trying to make the bill right for the majority of americans,not the majority of insurance companies as this bill does. Having middle class union workers pay instead of the rich fat cats proves to me whose side the demorats on are on. We need a new viable third party immediately, These two ole parties are really one party….the corporate party, a two headed snake.  So Mr. Boyarsky whoever you are…you obviously are a shill for the demorats who know they have made a terrible mistake. Lets have what Ben Nelson got for every state, my state is going bankrupt over health care costs…We want all the medicaid reciepitents in our states to have medicaid totally paid for by the feds. That would sweeten the deal. Second the feds have no power to force americans to buy insurance. Only states have that power, ie. car insurance. Social Security and Medicare fell under Commerce this bill does not. So the feds will have a helluva time trying to collect fines for not being able to afford health care. It will just force most not to file income tax. Strike this deal and start over. Have single payer health care scored and rid this country of the for profit insurance cartels as evil as the drug cartel.

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By jonathonk99, December 23, 2009 at 5:37 am Link to this comment

The only difference between NOW and THEN is that there is no large scale
progressive movement taking place!  Why did real reform like New Deal and Civil
Rights actually get passed back then was because Americans actually had the
determination to do something about it.  Back then we had real voices like Martin
Luther King.  They weren’t just sitting around in clammy rooms typing blogs or
bitching about how hard everything is.  They made themselves visible.  They were
marching across the United States with a clear message.  That’s what we need
NOW DAYS!  We need not just sit back and wait in vain for the folks on Capitol
Hill.  They are not like us.  They are more like Reptiles.  And we are humans. We
are the only ones that can save the Earth.  Not them.

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By truedigger3, December 23, 2009 at 4:08 am Link to this comment

Clinonius wrote:
“but let’s just remind them that the champions of real of REAL reform are Sanders, Feingold, Schumer(to some degree), and Alan Grayson.
Nobody in the White house or congress has
more vigorously stood by the American people than these noble (Jewish) individuals.”
___________________________________________________

Take Schumer out from that group. He is not a noble man. He is a war monger, blind supporter of Israel and water carrier for Wall St. Definitely he doesn’t stand by the common people.
It still pains me that both Sanders and Feingold voted for this piece of crap of a legislation.
If their execuse is that this the best we can get, then that is a very lame execuse and it is the main reaso of the problems that are facing the so called “progressives”

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By clintonius, December 23, 2009 at 3:05 am Link to this comment

liquorstorelarry>>>>> fair enough. this debate has
nothing to do with conspiracy theories about Israeli
involvement, etc… It’s entirely farcical. But I
don’t like to see “anti-semite” bandied about at the
drop of a hat. Yeah, they could be knee-jerk racists,
looking for a bogeyman, but let’s just remind them
that the champions of real of REAL reform are
Sanders, Feingold, Schumer(to some degree), and Alan
Grayson. Nobody in the white house or congress has
more vigorously stood by the American people than
these noble (Jewish) individuals. So next time
somebody tries to draw an imaginary line to connect
imaginary dots. We might be better served to simply
remind them who our friends are, and who the real
obstructionists are. Bill Boyarsky can count himself
among the teenage girl demographic who fawns and
drools every time Obama’s cult of personality gives a
rousing speech. But, we all know his closed door
meetings and lack of anything resembling gonads puts
him pits him squarely against us.  Which is, like you
said, why we won’t vote for him again.  “Fool me once
shame on me, fool me twice…...uh, uh, don’t get
fooled again.”

Clintonius.

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By Liquor Store Larry, December 22, 2009 at 7:52 pm Link to this comment

Communism is just plain wrong and the entire notion of HAVING to purchase anything in what USED TO BE “a free country” is offensive and anathema. The state of health care in America IS so bad that if this bill could promise to bring down costs by 80% and insure everyone, maybe it would be worth considering that we swallow a pill THAT bitter but not only won’t it reduce costs, it will raise them and in realtiy, this bill should be called what it is: “The what’s left of the middle class pays for illegal aliens, winos, drug addicts, and the generally disenfranchised act”. Obama sits on his a** as if he was still a rookie Senator and allows lobbyists to craft this entire abomination which delivers like fatted cattle to these mobsters who peddle “protection money”. No wonder these sons of bit**es are preparing for civil unrest!

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By Nomad1, December 22, 2009 at 3:31 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Sorry…I meant to include the link to the Boston Globe article:
http://www.boston.com/bostonglobe/editorial_opinion/oped/articles/2009/03/02/mass_healthcare_reform_is_failing_us/

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By Nomad1, December 22, 2009 at 3:26 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Hey Bill, you forgot the part about the mushroom cloud.

Check out the Boston Globe, May 2, 2009 for a review of the Massachusetts healthcare for all scheme to see why such boondoggles don’t save lives.

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By KDelphi, December 22, 2009 at 12:09 am Link to this comment

Do Dems a favor and put them in the minority again in 2010—they seem to have great angst over the responsibility and just cant seem to handle it.

Obama will have such an easier time blaming everything on Congress, then.

the worm—have you read the bill? Oh, wait, its stil “changing” and everytime it does, the whole country is footing the bill for Nelson’s Nebraska Medicaid (and a few other states…the rest , f*ck you, I guess….its called bribery) or abortion insurance is “introduced”.

It just gets worse everyday…but Chris Matthews still gets a tingle up his leg when Obama speaks…we should be the ones getting aroused—we’re being f*cked, after all.

Oh,you Dems are so funny…hehe

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By Mack TN, December 21, 2009 at 8:21 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Embedded in this reprimand of all who can’t see reform in this bill is a belief that insurance companies and the medical community will do the right thing now that they’ll be paid more money and take care of all those people they let die over the years.

No one should have died in this country for lack of health insurance. I have little faith in the corporate mindset that felt justified to allow people to die because they didn’t present an insurance card at the front desk.

You know, insurance isn’t all of it. Even with insurance, you still have a big percentage of the bill to pay, getting bigger every day. Do you know that I was recently DENIED care because I owed $100 on a bill that had been largely covered by BXBS? 

See, Mr. Boyarsky—they’ll get around that and take your money, too. But you must have some convincing evidence that insurers and corporate medicine will do the right thing if we just give them more money.

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By Alan MacDonald, December 21, 2009 at 7:02 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Bill, instead of fighting about the symptom of health care reform being a deadly pain (the way the bill was eviscerated by corporate interests) and arguing about who’s the most to blame, let’s diagnose the central problem that caused this—- and will cause many more people to die from it’s other symptoms.

Let’s use the Health Care bill as an Obama “teaching moment”—- not him ‘teaching us’ but us ‘teaching him’.

This ‘Health Care’ (sic) bill reminds me of the illogic of the Vietnam War:

“It became necessary to destroy the bill in order to save it”

And, in fact, the reason that this illogic applied then in the Vietnam War “abroad”, and now in the corporatist tyranny over health care “at home” is precisely the same reason—- that a ruling-elite corporate/financial/militarist EMPIRE makes all the major decisions in our country, and not the people of America.

As Hannah Arendt presciently warned from her direct experience with empires:

“Empire abroad (always) entails tyranny at home”.

Let’s teach Obama and Congress a critical lesson that they need to understand.  The famous old phrase was, “What goes around, comes around”.  But today, “What goes around, comes home to roost” as his own minister tried to teach him.

Let’s tell Obama:

“If you are only going to pose as another front-man for the ruling-elite Global corporate/financial/militarist EMPIRE that controls our country—- by hiding behind the façade of its two-party ‘Vichy’ sham of democracy—- then that’s not the ‘hope’ and ‘change’ that we voted for. 

We’ve been fed that old “Okie Doke” (as you called it) since the Vietnam War, for forty years! 

Now if you really believe that times they are a changing, and that you don’t need to be a weatherman to know which way the wind is blowin, and that ‘Yes we can’ confront Empire, then why don’t you give us a chance, and help lead us in a second American Revolution for democracy against Empire—- cause if you’re not going to lead, then at least ‘get out of the way’.”

Alan MacDonald
Sanford, Maine

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By apolloguide, December 21, 2009 at 1:04 pm Link to this comment

Bill just doesn’t seem to comprehend that the
Republicans intentionally forced every bit of crap
into this bill and took every bit of goodness out of
it to force its defeat in the eyes of the American
people while requiring the Congress to pass it so
that the Democrats can look like the short sighted
fools that they are in order to elect the Sarah Palin
- Glen Beck in 2012. 

As this bill is written now your medicare money and
your social security check will be reduced to give
even more money to insurance executives in the terms
of wall street size bonuses.  That’s what Dean saw; 
and what any other moderately astute American needs
to be able to get their heads around.  Most retired
Americans get a little over 500 a month in social
security. Then any federal indebtedness like student
loans and this public/private option swindle comes
out in 20% chunks from that 500. Most retired
Americans carrying these debts will have $325 a month
as their sole means of survival.  With the TARP
giveaway inflationary effects (to be experienced in
reduced buying power and the already quickly rising
prices of food and consumables like gasoline that
$325 should be enough to fill your gas tank once and
get you two cases of beer from Liquor Store Larry and
some beef jerky.  If you don’t believe that
conditions such as those will get Palin—Beck elected
then you had better stockpile canned food for your
retirement and live like the father and son in “The
Road”.  Either way the Devil gets his due. 

David Michael Green had a piece today and had the
clearest picture of Obama yet:
““...I did not run for office to continue George
Bush’s valiant effort at shredding the Bill of
Rights.  It’s just that those government-limiting
rules are so darned pesky.”

“...I did not run for office to dump a ton of
taxpayer money into the coffers of health insurance
companies.  It’s just that they asked so nicely.”

“...I did not run for office to block equality for
gay Americans.  I just never got around to doing
anything about it.”

“...I did not run for office to turn Afghanistan into
Vietnam.  I just didn’t want to say no to all the
nice generals asking for more troops.”

Here’s a guy who was supposed to actually do
something with his presidency, and he’s turned into
the skinny little geek on Cell Block D who gets
passed around like a rag doll for the pleasure of all
the fellas with the tattoos there.  He’s being punked
by John Boehner, for chrisakes.  He’s being rolled by
the likes of Joe Lieberman.  He calls a come-to-Jesus
meeting with Wall Street bank CEOs, and half of them
literally phone it in.  Everyone from Bibi Netanyahu
to the Japanese prime minister to sundry Iranian
mullahs is stomping all over Mr. Happy.

And he doesn’t even seem to realize it.”
http://counterpunch.org/green12212009.html

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By john from ojai, December 21, 2009 at 12:04 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Obama received more money from the health industry than any president in history. Bacus got $3million+ and Lieberman got $3million+. Obama never even tried to get universal or a public option. The fix was in from the start and we should kill the bill just to send a message to our corrupt politicians.

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By the worm, December 21, 2009 at 12:02 pm Link to this comment

Health Care Reform: Quick Comparison Pre & Post Reform:

Currently, we pay our health insurance premium. The insurance company takes
our premium and covers administration, markets & advertises, pays bonuses &
lobbies against your interests, and uses a portion to provide health care should
it believe it is required. What’s different in the Senate’s ‘reform’ package?
Answer: In the future, by law, we are mandated to pay health insurance
premiums, our taxes will subsidize the health insurance industry by paying the
premiums for those who cannot afford insurance and insurers can use 20% of
our premium by law on non-health care (see administration, etc. above).
Comment: As with the financial industry, the bill promises ‘heavy regulation’ of
the insurance industry. Health Care We Can Believe In.

(( And, by the way Liguor Store Larry, in most states, for the protection of
others, you’re ‘mandated’ to purchase car insurance. Other ‘mandated’
purchases might include Texas’ electricity (brought to them by a State
mandated near monopoly with among the highest rates in the nation (all
‘heavily regulated’ to protect the consumer, no doubt), water, garbage
collection, road taxes, school taxes, etc. LSL, listen to your self; do you actually
believe what you’re saying? ))

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By doodahman, December 21, 2009 at 11:13 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Uh, what is it in the plan that will make it possible for a 50 year old to lose his job and still have insurance? The only thying the plan does is require him, upon pain of large fines, to buy a policy at three to five times the premium of under 50 year olds, for a polich with huge deductibles, annual caps, and every means to delay paying that the insurance companies have today but for preexisting conditions.

Howard Dean has been on this issue from day one; he’s a doctor and a governor, and in all the years he’s been in the public eye, he’s always made a lot more sense than just about anyone else.
Oh, but you, Boyarsky, know the bill better. Except, it doesn’t appear from what you write that you even know what’s in it.

How embarrassing for you.

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By Liquor Store Larry, December 21, 2009 at 10:07 am Link to this comment

In a “free country” nobody should EVER be mandated to purchase anthing.

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By Tex Shelters, December 21, 2009 at 9:44 am Link to this comment

Another person trying to blame liberals for a failed bill that is a sell out to insurance companies and big pharma. As far as I am concerned, progressives are the only ones protecting the people here and Mr. Boyarsky is just buying into the lie that it’s this or nothing.

These are the reason people stay in abusive relationships: they don’t see any other options or way out. Sorry, better to opt out than be abused.

Thanks for the blame Mr. B. You’re a mensch.

Peace,
Tex Shelters

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By Jackie9, December 21, 2009 at 7:25 am Link to this comment

Any healthcare “reform” that makes the sociopathic murderous insurance
companies clap their hands (as this does) can’t be good. This is just more
corporate slavery. I just do not understand why more people aren’t screaming and
protesting. We need simple to understand, nonprofit universal healthcare. Period.

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By truedigger3, December 21, 2009 at 5:57 am Link to this comment

Re:By DieDaily, December 21 at 4:46 am #

DieDaily,

You explained it beautifully and your WWF example is excellent. Thank you.

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By idarad, December 21, 2009 at 5:57 am Link to this comment

diamond - Reform only means altering the existing form, but in the end you have the same basic, fundamental flaws, they are simply located in a different part of the structure.  To say rap-pig-likins don’t reform is not true, remember they reformed taxes for us in 2001, and hasn’t that worked out well.

No we don’t need reform, we need reconstitution!

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By truedigger3, December 21, 2009 at 5:53 am Link to this comment

Re:By diamond, December 21 at 3:21 am #

diamond,

The nonsense is coming from you and not from me.
You are blinded by partisanship to see anything.
The health care “reform” the Democrats are trying to sell is not a reform at all but a sell-out to the health care industrial complex.
You are trying to use the same old tried and worn out bullshit that is, vote Democratic, or anything else will be a disaster.
But it is so glaringly obvious with “Team Obama” performance that there is no REAL difference between the two parties and both of them are owned and controlled by corporate America.
To make you feel a little better, from now on, I will vote neither for the Democrats or the Republicans and if there no good independent or third party candidates, then I will not vote at all, and so be it. Enough of the current charade.
Last election I voted for Cynthia Mckinney and the Greens.

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By C.Curtis.Dillon, December 21, 2009 at 5:42 am Link to this comment

The whole problem with passing this mess is in this wonderful idea of revisiting it again later to improve things.  The usual cycle of improvements is about 20 years which means most of us will either be in Medicare or dead before congress does anything.  This cycle can go on for decades and nothing much will change.  We started with Medicare last time and then fixed minor problems along the way.  This bill is not change but just tweaking the existing for-profit system to increase profits and remove some options we had (like not getting insurance at all).  This is not reform and therefore we should not accept a basic bill that is flawed and hope that in 20 years or so we get another Democratic majority and have another go at it.  We need to demand at least the public option as a start.  Anything less is a sham and insult to us.

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By DieDaily, December 21, 2009 at 5:24 am Link to this comment

KDelphi, how dare you bring up so many well researched facts! Actual study of the bill like that should be banned as evil heresy. We should just listen to and talk about the sound bytes, divide ourselves into two false and contrived camps, and then throw mud at the other fake side. Jeez, if you’re not careful you could wake a whole bunch of people up to the truth of the matter. They will not thank you for this, as it was so much easier to glibly regurgitate partisan talking points. What on earth are we going to do if enough people wake up and start collaborating as non-partisan centrists? You’re playing with fire.

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By KDelphi, December 21, 2009 at 12:56 am Link to this comment

If you are a Dem, and, religious in any way (and you must be), pray that the House does something to keep elements of this horrible bill that just passed, from going into effect until you can win another election!

I have never seen a more corporate, sold out phony bill in my entire life. Doctors and hospital administrators are already talking baout how this will reduce access for the poor, expand medicaid as a mandate without funding it, etc. And there is no reason for them not to—-the Democrats sure as hell wont make them do anything…but I do actually feel a little sorry for people like Sens Brown and Sanders (who were among the last sell outs) when the actuality of this corporate crap dawns on the Merkin people!

H0w in the hell are broke states going to pay for 15 million more people on medicaid without funding?? INsurance will be for sale to those with pre-existing contiosn, but for 3x the price of a “healthy” person! Over 50? Your price, that the Senate has so graciously offered for YOU to buy, will be 5 x that of someone under 50. making about $44,000 a yr (about the median)? INsurance will “only” cost you around $3500 a year , AFTER you take the cuts off of your taxes, which you probably dont even pay!! Working class income people have always been able to take their health care expenses out in taxes, IF they make enough to pay taxes! And, taxing plans of those who gave up a middle class income all of their lives to have decent health insurance..shame on the Dems and anyone who defends this ponzi scheme

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By DieDaily, December 21, 2009 at 12:46 am Link to this comment

diamond, when you say “If the Republicans and the Democrats are exactly the same why are the Democrats trying to ...etc..” you are falling for the classic WWF canard. You don’t realize that what you are really saying is no different from “If Hulk Hogan and The Rock are really on the same side then why are they trying to beat each other up?”. That’s ALL you are really arguing.

The real answer to that argument is “because this is show business and it’s all scripted”. Get it? The two parties are the left and right arms of one single beast. It’s all scripted, save for a few lonely voices of conscience. Don’t fall for it. Do a little research. There is nothing fundamental to choose between when speaking of the the “two parties”.

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By diamond, December 20, 2009 at 11:21 pm Link to this comment

The nonsense is coming from you, truedigger. If the Republicans and the Democrats are exactly the same why are the Democrats trying to pass a health care bill to move towards fixing what is a national disgrace and the Republicans are prepared to do anything to stop it happening, even if that means forcing some poor schmuck to read all 2,000 pages of the bill out to prevent a vote being taken on it? A vote they know they will lose.

You can whine about the Democrats all you like, but they are the only party that actually does reform, that is actually interested in reform while the Republicans, like all conservative parties, live in their own version of Versailles, and are not interested in reform or progress AT ALL. If this suits you fine, then vote for them or if you want your vote to be completely irrelevant then vote for Ralph Nader or some other boutique party that can fit all its paid up members in a hall. In a democracy the choice is yours but I can assure you if the Republicans could rule by decree they would. The wafer thin space that separated the Republicans from fascism has evaporated, spurred on by Ronald Reagan and his neo con acolytes. They are now a danger to everyone - including themselves. Sitting on the fence and hating both parties equally will give you nothing but a sore behind.

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By xox, December 20, 2009 at 10:25 pm Link to this comment

Seriously, it sounds as if an embittered Rahm Emanuel wrote this name-calling
rebuke for trying to stop an absolute train-wreck power-takeover of our
healthcare.

Passing this bill as is, would turn the Insurance Industrial Complex into an
invincible blood-sucking vampire.

It needs to be defeated and re-written.

Howard Dean is not ego-driven or greed-driven. Sorry.

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By DieDaily, December 20, 2009 at 7:42 pm Link to this comment

What’s wrong with the Senate bill? Don’t you WANT to see more than a quarter of all services summarily terminated? We don’t need all those health services, just like we don’t need so many people around. I say support the Senate bill so that we can kill off the maximum number of citizens while shoveling all the savings into the hands of the insurance company owners. Support the bill so you can be a good liberal. But make very sure you don’t read the fine print…you might realize it’s a genocidal travesty of a bill.

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By spk, December 20, 2009 at 6:45 pm Link to this comment

Strip the individual mandate out of the bill(s) and pass this anemic health
insurance reform. Fine, but please stop trying to spin this ridiculous argument
that we HAVE to pass this bill or people will die and it will somehow be my fault.
This argument is basically extortion. Health Insurance Lobbyists have written this
bill and cut deals with the White House where upon their clients, the private, for
profit, insurance leaches that are primarily responsible for the current state of
affairs, will be get a multi-billion dollar giveaway in exchange for a few insurance
reforms that may or may not save people. I say may or may not because some of
the same loopholes used now to deny service to people are still in place under
this bill in the Senate and the one in the House too. Your argument has no merit:
Either I support this appalling gift to the private corporations or the sick ones get
it. Come on.

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By hopeychangey, December 20, 2009 at 5:18 pm Link to this comment

The facts are obvious to anyone willing to try and understand. 

The urgency in passing this bill rests in politics, not policy.  The need for quick passage is purely the need for avoidance of any thoughtful review and assessment by you.  Those taht have taken the time to understand clearly do not support this congressional trash.

A bad bill that passes is simply not a good bill, no matter the underlying hope and premise that will create laudatory next-day headlines.

The passage of this bill’s headline promises will provide a short-term boost to an otherwise flailing domestic administrative leadership that is more focused on perception than follow through. 

As a supporter, it’s desperately disappointing that Obama has so quickly became a stooge for special interests, populist polls and his ego.  While it was clearly evident in his campaign that he is a narcissist, it was still hopeful and promising that he could rise above that self-interest to deliver some real forward progress to the country.  What an abysmal failure in that regard.  He has not differentiated himself in any positive way from any of his predescessors. 

The ridiculous legacy of this ludicrous bill will haunt his already meaningless legacy for years to come.  He’s quickly making Carter, in retrospect, look like the good old days.

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By truedigger3, December 20, 2009 at 3:56 pm Link to this comment

diamond wrote:
“it’s the Republicans who are to blame for all of it -including the fact that they have been bribed for years to prevent any kind of publicly funded health care system ever coming to fruition in America.”
____________________________________________________

Please stop that partisan nonsense. The Democrats is as guilty as the Republicans and both of them are owned, controlled and beholden to corporate America.
From day one even before any discusssions of health care “reform” has started, Team Obama, has got its instrucions from the health care industrial complex which are: there will be no public option, everyone will be forced to buy health insurance and no price controls on anything whatsoever. All the so called discussions,  compromises, haglings are nothing but posturing and theatrics and make-believe bullshitting. The fix was in from the very beginning.!
And again, that is very disgusting and dishonest article. Shame on truthdig for allowing such a piece of crap.

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By Allan Krueger, December 20, 2009 at 2:59 pm Link to this comment

Thank goodness! The health care industry may get their wind fall in time for Christmas!

Bill, listen for that popping sound some time in 2010 - it will be your head coming out of your ass!

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By Liquor Store Larry, December 20, 2009 at 2:45 pm Link to this comment

Clintonious - as I mentioned before, for the third time now, the only reason I brought up Israel, is that someone who posted, raised the issue of Joe Lieberman’s Judaism and support for Israel in THIS DEBATE. I DID NOT bring it up, I merely called the ass*ole an anti-Semite for working his contempt for Jews into a debate about health care. I think it is curious (putting it politely) that Diamond and various chatters have blamed Republicans for a conspicuously lousy health care bill when it is Obama who is delivering us like fatted cattle to insurance companies, Obama who is allowing bankers to sweep across American like Locusts using having been kept artificially alive by our great grandchildren’s money to in turn foreclose on the homes our great grandchildren should have inherited and Bill Clinton who signed Phil Gramm’s legislation NOW KNOWN as “The Enron Loophole” that undid Glass Steagal, and removed depression era firewalls between financial institutions that had protected us for three quarters of a century and then Bill Clinton again in 2000 who signed The Commodity Futures Modernization Act which assured that derivatives were totally unregulated by any government agency and without which this entire economic melt down could not have taken place. As a life long Democrat and having been suckered into voting for Obama and now feeling like a fool for being had by yet another “corporate Democrat” I am re-registering Independent. The Democrats have proved beyond a shadow of a doubt that they are every bit as corrupt as the Republicans and that they too are nothing more than a wholly owned subsidiary of corporate America. What a pity for those in my age group who toiled throughout the civil rights movement years to have finally broken the racial barriers and elected a black president who turned out just to be a darker shade of corporate lap dog and to that end he has allowed the congress to shape this piece of excrement they call a health care bill, a credit card holder bill of rights that renders the word “usury” obsolete and a bail out that should surprise no one but those suckers who like me, voted for the son of a bi*ch who came right out and told us that “the courts were a poor tool to effect the redistribution of wealth” but has found the perfect way to do it. Stealing it from the American people.

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By adelante, December 20, 2009 at 2:02 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Before Mr. Boyarsky starts accusing Dr./Gov. Dean, and other intelligent progressives of being members of a “death panel,” maybe it is fair to ask how many lives HE has saved lately; I’ll bet not as many as Howard, who actually presided over a univeral public health system in Vermont that worked.  If Obama was really interested in health care reform, he would have appointed Gov. Dean to the HUS secretary position instead of Sibelius, but it is patently obvious now after this six-month farce that Obama never was interested in real reform, and that Joe Lieberman was nothing more than a Bad Cop to Obama’s Good Cop.

Now that the senate bill has been stripped of virtually any fig leaf of meaningful reform, we are supposed to support it just so that the president does not fail, for that would hand Congress and the White House to the GOP in the next two election cycles.  I for one am sick of the tweedledee/tweedledum two-party system in this country that makes a fraud of Democracy.  The only way out of this dead-end is a viable Third Party.

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By openlyliberal, December 20, 2009 at 1:47 pm Link to this comment

Diamond, it’s not just the Republicans that have been bribed on this one, we’re up against former staffers of Ted Kennedy of all people (http://www.chicagotribune.com/health/chi-health-lobbyists_bddec20,0,5453763,print.story).  The revolving door is what doomed this bill from the very beginning—and every other “reform” until we outlaw the practice.

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By diamond, December 20, 2009 at 1:18 pm Link to this comment

It would be nice if America could just do what needs to be done and include the public option so that health care costs can be kept under control by giving the monsters that run America’s private health insurance companies what they claim they want: capitalism, a market mechanism and genuine competition. But of course they want no such thing. What they want is to go on exploiting the sick and the vulnerable so they can reap windfall profits, every year, all the time. A person as intelligent, logical and decent as Howard Dean can see all this and has lost patience with the political process but for God’s sake put the blame where it belongs: it’s the Republicans who are to blame for all of it -including the fact that they have been bribed for years to prevent any kind of publicly funded health care system ever coming to fruition in America. And then there’s the national disgrace known as Joe Lieberman…He and the Republicans will do everything they can to damage this bill but they know damn well that in the end a bill will pass whatever they do, including having all 2,000 pages of it read out (such childish morons should lose their seats in a rational world).

To vote against it because it’s not perfectly formed would be the same as voting against the universal suffrage bill because at first it didn’t include women. I think it’s obvious that if the first bill hadn’t passed giving men the vote, because the suffrage wasn’t actually universal, that would have been a tragic miscalculation. Politics is the art of the possible and the time to pass a health care bill is now. The stars are aligned and to waste this opportunity would be foolish beyond all measure. But the real problem here is the Republican Party, its corruption and its belief that it is the government no matter what the voters say: which causes it to play the spoiler and the wrecker on all progressive legislation. The liberals should seize the day. Success is the best revenge.

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By clintonius, December 20, 2009 at 12:28 pm Link to this comment

liquorstorelarry>>>chill out with the “anti-semetic”
jabs. It’s such an overplayed word…it actually used
to be a serious accusation, but people like you have
watered down so much that it’s nearly meaningless
anymore. Save it for the real nazis. You can’t hide
behind that word every single time someone criticizes
israel or disagrees with you. i abhor zionism for the
same reasons i abhor fundamental islamism and right
wing christianity. So, chill the f*ck out. Also,
arabs are semites, so the term doesn’t even make
sense if what you mean is people who hate the jewish
race.

But let’s get back to the debate at hand. Boyarsky’s
op-ed was absolute garbage. Why truthdig made an
article that poorly written as a headline is beyond
me…unless they were purposely trying to provoke the
likes of me.

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By par4, December 20, 2009 at 9:29 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Two thumbs down for this agitprop.

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By ardee, December 20, 2009 at 8:15 am Link to this comment

ridinginfaith, December 20 at 11:06 am #

My Father died, he had Medicare and Medicaid , any questions?

Errr, certainly a couple spring to mind. The first is:

Do you realize that everyone dies?

Another might be:

You ascribe his death, by omission alone, to medicare and medicaid. Perhaps you might elaborate?

Sorry for your loss of course.

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By clintonius, December 20, 2009 at 7:56 am Link to this comment

What a disgraceful op-ed Bill. You should be ashamed
at writing misleading, dishonest tripe like this.
Howard Dean never said KILL the BILL. You are flat
out lying. Dean said that the bill in its current
form can and should be pushed through with a public
option or medicare buy in via reconciliation. You
know this to be true. So why lie? Because you’re
another one of the establishment “liberals” who will
carry the water for any neo-liberal democrat. What an
absolute disgrace. Furthermore, what an incredibly
pathetic leap of logic to dismiss bloggers who
disagree with this watered down bill as “attention
seekers”. This is one of the most ignorant and
shameless pieces of filth I’ve read in a long time. 
And the fact that you refer to Ezra Klein as “one of
the sharpest journalist in the health debate” proves
further how out of touch with reality you are.
Totally unfair, and reprehensible tripe Bill. Thanks
for showing us your true colors though. Now we know
what to expect from you. Good day.

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By Liquor Store Larry, December 20, 2009 at 7:28 am Link to this comment

truedigger3 - the only “whiff” I got of anything was the stench of your anti-Semitism. I was responding to a post that raised the issue of Lieberman’s allegiance to Israel in the course of the debate on the topic of health care. Lieberman’s feelings about Israel and/or Judaism have absolutely nothing to do with his vote on this health care bill and only a Jew hater would bring them up. Furthermore, Liebermans critisizm regarding this lousy bill have been spot on and compeltely legitimate and justified.
You are not the only dunderhead who calls themselves progressive based on the belief that if a society is technologically sophisticated, it gives them a moral obligation to allow themselves to be over run and murdered by savage barbarians who are sworn to their extermination. The world is full of as*holes sir, you are only ONE OF THEM!

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By dihey, December 20, 2009 at 7:07 am Link to this comment

According to the latest news there will be 60 Democratic Senators willing to vote aye for a crappy piece of legislation. The 60 must include Senator Sanders. I was criticized on this site for calling him “not a real socialist” if he votes for this overwhelmingly pro-industry legislation. I repeat my conclusion: if he votes for the Senate bill he is a fake socialist.

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By ridinginfaith, December 20, 2009 at 7:06 am Link to this comment

My Father died, he had Medicare and Medicaid , any questions?

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By Tahut, December 20, 2009 at 6:34 am Link to this comment

Boyarsky, I’ve over 50, working part-time (thanks Bu$h) and no health insurance, but I agree with Howard Dean 100%. This pending bill is nothing more than a full blown abortion and deserves to dies a quick but painful death. If this is the best the Democrats can come up with, then we’re better off if they’d just leave it alone and let the market take its’ course.

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By Caro, December 20, 2009 at 4:25 am Link to this comment

>>I am not normally a conspiracy guy, but this is all
starting to look like some big manipulation of us
simple folk.

It certainly is a big manipulation, the biggest con
of all selling Obama as whatever the beholder wanted
him to be, but it’s no conspiracy.

It’s right out in the open.

Carolyn Kay
MakeThemAccountable.com

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By ardee, December 20, 2009 at 3:58 am Link to this comment

For those interested in the actual cost of health care in this nation I offer these links.

http://www.healthreform.gov/reports/hiddencosts/index.html

http://www.kff.org/insurance/upload/7670.pdf


http://content.nejm.org/cgi/content/full/349/8/768

In 1999, health administration costs totaled at least $294.3 billion in the United States, or $1,059 per capita, as compared with $307 per capita in Canada. After exclusions, administration accounted for 31.0 percent of health care expenditures in the United States and 16.7 percent of health care expenditures in Canada. Canada’s national health insurance program had overhead of 1.3 percent; the overhead among Canada’s private insurers was higher than that in the United States (13.2 percent vs. 11.7 percent). Providers’ administrative costs were far lower in Canada.

I embolden the lines above to show that administrative costs far exceed the estimates of some.

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By truedigger3, December 20, 2009 at 3:16 am Link to this comment

Re:Liquor Store Larry, December 19 at 11:09 pm #

LSL,

To a rabid zionist like you, any whif of critisizism of Israel or a jewish politician collusion with Israel, is antisemitism. We are tired of hearing that song and nobody will dance to it anymore.

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By Jon, December 20, 2009 at 3:12 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

All this bill does is deliver 30+ million new ‘profit generators’ to Big Health Care corporations.  It places no requirements on these corporations for performance to the individual, and to provide comprehensive coverage, or be heavily penalized (beyond a ‘cost of doing business’ point) for denial of service or poor service.  The insurance companies do not make money unless they skimp on service, deny service, etc., and this bill does nothing to regulate and enforce these issues. 

So what we’re going to see is: junk insurance plans that people are forced to purchase by the bill’s requirements to avoid ‘penalty,’ and then they will find out that they need ‘supplemental’ insurance (which will have huge fees) to actually get the coverage they THOUGHT they were getting via this bill. (watch this ‘supplemental’ business to be huge for the companies as they will offer narrow supplementals, so an individual will have to purchase several, each separately priced, to achieve comprehensive coverage—which will not be subsidized in price by the bill) The complaints by individuals actively trying to USE their insurance will be tied up in the ‘complaint process,’ which will use delay to defeat the individual.  Attorneys will make lots of money, and so will ‘health care bill’ advisers, who help individuals navigate the bill’s requirements, and inform them of what kind of ‘supplemental’ plans they need to actually get the lump diagnosed and treated if necessary.  Meanwhile, Congress and Obama will be patting themselves on the back for ‘reforming health care at long last,’ and further, Congress will be cashing all those checks they got from the health care lobby to scuttle real reform:  a solid, strong, enforced, public option, and regulations with teeth on the insurance companies to perform their obligations. 

This bill is a W bill or a Clinton bill: it is a boon for corporate profits while pretending to be ‘good for Americans.’ E.g., banking deregulation and NAFTA. 

If Congress had been truly wanting to offer reform, they could have done it in two pages:  Medicare for all.  Just as they gave ‘trillions of dollars for all’ in reponse to Hank Paulson’s two page ‘bill’ demanding that money ‘or else.’ 

I’m sorry to see so many take the ‘well at least we got something passed’ attitude toward this very important health care bill issue.  Back in the day, women said they wanted the vote, and they finally got it.  We said as an American people, we want simple, universal single payer health care, and instead we got mush.  Nuts to this.

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By ocjim, December 20, 2009 at 12:14 am Link to this comment

A good point, Bill, but Howard Dean didn’t say to scuttle the bill. He spoke reconciliation. I think we all can be excused for our frustration with the obstructionists and the poor deluded folks. In the end, as long as the bills don’t get worse, passage is best but we must do something about the 2014 full implementation. I know sick people without insurance who will die before, and with the inhumane struggles that being uninsured carries with it.

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By DaveZx3, December 19, 2009 at 11:56 pm Link to this comment

NABNYC, December 19 at 10:13 pm #

“The problem with healthcare is that it’s too expensive.  Many doctors make well over $1.0 million/year, hospitals pay their corporate owners millions in profits, drug companies grossly overcharge.  Yet the Democrats did nothing to “fix” what is truly the problem with healthcare in this country:  it’s too expensive for most people to afford”

Yes, modern health care cannot be afforded by the masses.  Running the bills through the commercial insurance companies adds at least 5% to 10% in administrative costs alone to the overall cost.  But with direct loss ratios running from the high 70s to low 90s, health insurance is not a real great profit generator for the companies.  New technology and drug availability drive up loss ratios, which lowers company stock values and drives away investors.  It will not take a lot to drive the insurance companies out of the health insurance business.  As it should be, because that extra 5 to 10% or more is becoming very hard to bear.

But like so many posters have indicated, lowering the cost by 10% or even 20% does little for the struggling family.  And as new technologies and drugs further drive up the costs, there will simply be no way in hell to afford it for the masses. 

What to do with the masses?  An age old question.  The masses are o.k. for labor, but they do expect to be paid and get benefits, and they want health insurance for each and every one of them.  If machines could do all the work, is there something else we could do with the masses? 

I mean, all these masses of people, they breath our air, they drink our water, they cut down our trees, they are warming up our planet, and they are getting louder and louder everyday!  And worst of all, they multiply like rabbits.

What was that philosphy by that old leftist guy, Sol Alinsky, who said you could get the masses to buy into all kinds of laws that would reduce and restrict their rights if you could just continously scare the shit out of them? 

We need to have absolute control over these masses of people, eradicting them whenever absolutely necessary.  We need to drive down their expectations through the manipulation of crisises related to economics, weather, war, politics, healthcare, religion and whatever else we can get going.  Polarize them, and make them so afraid and hopeless that they will do virtually anything we ask of them. 

Could the above musings be the actual programs and the tough conversations and questions which must be asked at the high level secret meetings attended by the non-elected mega-rich and their lap dogs a couple of times a year in this place or that?

I am not normally a conspiracy guy, but this is all starting to look like some big manipulation of us simple folk.  Is it all becoming a bit too surreal.  Or am I just getting progressively more paranoid?

The ones we elect, as scary as they are, are a lot less scary than the ones we don’t elect. 

(“Rule By Secrety” by Jim Marrs)

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By silly_article, December 19, 2009 at 11:46 pm Link to this comment

Now I know why, when I see Bill Boyarsky’s name on articles, I think: “Who the hell is Bill Boyarsky?” and hence I don’t normally read his articles. As you can see I thought this article sounded particularly peculiar.  I thought the whole point of health care reform was: people can’t afford health insurance, lets get them some freaking health care going because they pay taxes and we should be able to come up with something. Whyyyyyyyyyy would those people then, want to be forced(by law) to buy health insurance, like car insurance laws(which many people can’t afford and only get it when they get pulled over for something and have to and then don’t pay there bill after that)? Its like, “Well my fellow Americans, you can’t afford health insurance and you’re not going to the doctor, and you’re getting sick, and you had to go to the E.R. and now you owe 50-100,000 dollars that you have no way to pay, and you’re dying,ummm okay I’ve got it! Buy health insurance, or you’re breaking the law!” 

It’s absurd! Like Republicans are absurd! Like LIEberman is absurd! Like the anti-abortion front for opposition is absurd!(no Republican administration will ever end abortion), like not giving states the option for single payer(this bill is not public option anymore, its saying you have no option now but to buy health insurance somehow), like Bill Boyarsky is absurd!

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By Job62, December 19, 2009 at 11:25 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Obama doesn’t deserve a win on this one!  He has done nothing to earn it.

This is a terrible bill and if it isn’t why did the stock for all the major “health providers” go up nearly ten points when this bill came out with no real competition to control cost.  They will make a lot of (more) money.

It is as if the republicans have faked their disapproval knowing that what the democrats are going to do will be hated buy the American people and seen as a sellout. Then the republicans will be waiting with open arms in 2010 but they won’t change it back and we will be ripped off by those leaches for another generation.

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By yours truly, December 19, 2009 at 11:21 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Yes, not having health insurance kills, but by the time the insurance companies drive through the loopholes in this so-called reform bill, the ranks of the uninsured will grow, not shrink as the author claims.  Not just because these companies will figure out ways to deny coverage to those with preexisting conditions, cancel coverage to policy holders who develop expensive to treat illnesses, but because millions of Americans will take the penalty for not purchasing insurance, rather than waste money on a lousy policy.  So the net effect will be just about as many uninsured as before.  What’s more health costs will go up, not down as predicted, since the insurance company’s will be allowed to keep 20% of each premium (ie spend only 80% on health care), which is grand theft when compared to single payer system Medicare’s less than 5% overhead.  Except the company’s will find ways to steal (er, take) even more because that’s what privatization of public services stands for - theft of taxpayer money.  Meanwhile, just as many or more people without coverage and all this easily avoidable had only President Obama sought popular support by pitching single payer to them.  As for whether or not this giveaway to insurance companies will become less onorous with time, assuming Congress revises it, more likely Congress will repeal it by popular demand.  So the best thing that we can do now is work to defeat this bill, the effect on President Obama’s second term chances be damned.  After all we’re not obligated to him, whereas, he is to us.

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