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Inside Story on Town Hall Riots: Right-Wing Shock Troops Do Corporate America’s Dirty Work

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Posted on Aug 10, 2009

By Adele M. Stan, AlterNet

(Page 5)

Trotting out the trope ... that health-care reform bills provide for taxpayer-funded abortions, he urges his followers:

Stir up some dust!

Be "unreasonable!"

In fact, you might want to be a little noisier and a little more intense than you might normally be.

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I put it this way: If you were in danger of being murdered, and I could possibly save you at a town hall meeting, how would you want people to behave in a town hall meeting?

At a July press conference, Terry warned of "random acts of violence" that would occur if the health-care bill passed. There would be violent "reprisals against those deemed guilty," he said.

Think Terry’s too out on the fringe to matter? Think again. When AlterNet reported that the Supreme Court nomination hearing of Judge Sonia Sotomayor was being disrupted by Terry’s followers, not one Republican senator condemned him by name.

When Terry staged a demonstration outside the White House featuring men in Obama masks "whipping" him, not a distancing word was placed between him and the GOP establishment.

And now he is promulgating the false Republican claim that health-care reform will mean socialized euthanasia for the aged.

Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin also has links to Phillips; for seven years, her husband, Todd, claimed membership in the Alaska affiliate of the Constitution Party—the secessionist Alaska Independence Party, whose convention Palin addressed last year via video.

Every other day, it seems, I receive an e-mail from one right-wing organization or another, warning of the grave consequences of health-insurance reform.

The subject line in an e-mail from Human Events magazine screams at me "Grandmas and babies exterminated by Obama ‘health’ plan," even as another of its e-mails asks, "Obama birth certificate destroyed?" The anti-gay American Family Association warns: "Liberals seek to silence and demonize those who oppose their socialism."

Tony Perkins of the Family Research Council sent a plea for money to finance a television ad that features an elderly couple complaining of the government’s denial of surgery for the man while financing abortion with taxpayer dollars.

Think these organizations are not the Republican establishment? Consider that the annual Values Voter Summit sponsored by the Family Research Council’s PAC will feature former "moderate" GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney as a keynote speaker.

In the corridors of Washington’s K Street lobbying offices, in the district offices of Republican members of Congress, and in the executive suite of one singular mogul, the men of power must be well-pleased with themselves, watching YouTube videos of the mayhem they have unleashed on the rest of us. But they may just get their pound of flesh.


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By KDelphi, August 11, 2009 at 8:13 pm Link to this comment

Insutrctions for tomorrow’s town hall meetings:
No one is permitted to enter without a gun and must use it on at least one person.

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By KDelphi, August 11, 2009 at 7:07 pm Link to this comment

If you cant call an industry that makes profits from others’ misery and daeth “evil”, I guess there is just no use for the word…war profiteers, insurance insdustry, Big Pharma—-they all make a profit when people are sick and when people die.

They dont need to exist.

The “deal” that Obama made with Big Pharma is reprehensible.

Ive said it before, but, in 2003, Obama said that if the Dems had the Senate the House and the presidency, we would get universal health care.

What happened? If you cant explain that, in ways other than “he had to face realities in DC” whine=fest, give it up.

Every civilized country in the world does it. We could too, if our representatives represented us.

Ive been working on this for ages—-but I’m NOT going out and get my ass shot for this turkey of a plan.

I agree with William Wexler’s general strike and boycott ideas—-byt ‘Merkins dont have the balls. Male and female.

You think that they would buy this shit in France??

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By MarthaA, August 11, 2009 at 6:41 pm Link to this comment

Top Five Health Care Reform Lies Debunked

Lie #1: President Obama wants to euthanize your grandma!!!

The truth: These accusations—of “death panels” and forced euthanasia—are flatly untrue. As an article from the Associated Press puts it: “No ‘death panel’ in health care bill.”  What’s the real deal? Reform legislation includes a provision, supported by the AARP, to offer senior citizens access to a professional medical counselor who will provide them with information on preparing a living will and other issues facing older Americans.

Lie #2: Democrats are going to outlaw private insurance and force you into a government plan!!!

The truth: With reform, choices will increase, not decrease. Obama’s reform plans will create a health insurance exchange, a one-stop shopping marketplace for affordable, high-quality insurance options. Included in the exchange is the public health insurance option—a nationwide plan with a broad network of providers—that will operate alongside private insurance companies, injecting competition into the market to drive quality up and costs down.

If you’re happy with your coverage and doctors, you can keep them. But the new public plan will expand choices to millions of businesses or individuals who choose to opt into it, including many who simply can’t afford health care now.

Lie #3: President Obama wants to implement Soviet-style rationing!!!

The truth: Health care reform will expand access to high-quality health insurance, and give individuals, families, and businesses more choices for coverage. Right now, big corporations decide whether to give you coverage, what doctors you get to see, and whether a particular procedure or medicine is covered—that is rationed care. And a big part of reform is to stop that.

Health care reform will do away with some of the most nefarious aspects of this rationing: discrimination for pre-existing conditions, insurers that cancel coverage when you get sick, gender discrimination, and lifetime and yearly limits on coverage.  And outside of that, as noted above, reform will increase insurance options, not force anyone into a rationed situation.

Lie #4: Obama is secretly plotting to cut senior citizens’ Medicare benefits!!!

The truth: Health care reform plans will not reduce Medicare benefits. Reform includes savings from Medicare that are unrelated to patient care—in fact, the savings comes from cutting billions of dollars in overpayments to insurance companies and eliminating waste, fraud, and abuse.

Lie #5: Obama’s health care plan will bankrupt America!!!

The truth: We need health care reform now in order to prevent bankruptcy—to control spiraling costs that affect individuals, families, small businesses, and the American economy.

Right now, we spend more than $2 trillion dollars a year on health care.  The average family premium is projected to rise to over $22,000 in the next decade —and each year, nearly a million people face bankruptcy because of medical expenses.  Reform, with an affordable, high-quality public option that can spur competition, is necessary to bring down skyrocketing costs. Also, President Obama’s reform plans would be fully paid for over 10 years and not add a penny to the deficit.

We’re closer to real health care reform than we’ve ever been—and the next few weeks will decide whether it happens. We need to make sure the truth about health care reform is spread far and wide to combat right wing lies.

http://www.whitehouse.gov/realitycheck/

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By DBM, August 11, 2009 at 5:37 pm Link to this comment

No argument with the reasons for anger that you list BlueEagle but I would posit that the real power rests not with the government but with the corporations who manipulate the state. 

Healthcare reform is (or should be) an attempt to remove some of that power from the corporations answerable to their shareholders and put it with the government which is answerable to the voters.

I know who I’d rather have between me and health care that I needed!

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By BlueEagle, August 11, 2009 at 5:29 pm Link to this comment

Bulls**t! People are fed up with the The State, and they are expressing themselves.

The MSM can label these people all they want and make false accusations to try an justify The State’s power grab.

It’s not just government run health care people are protesting, it’s the bailouts, the wars of aggression, wire tapping, torture, etc.

We The People are pissed off and the town halls are just an expression of all that anger.

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By DBM, August 11, 2009 at 5:22 pm Link to this comment

Don’t worry Leefeller ... you’re far from the only one.  It seems the words “one trillion dollars” are well cemented into the healthcare debate.

A very quick Google turned up this CBS report which correctly quotes the ten year time period:

http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2009/08/10/business/main5230656.shtml

If only the press and commentariat would be so clear about military spending which is hidden across multiple agencies and topped up with “special appropriations” to pay for actual military actions.

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By Leefeller, August 11, 2009 at 5:14 pm Link to this comment

DBM, My parroting of the numbers was from an unreliable source, the Military budget is way over what I would budget if I were King, unless I wanted to expand my grip on the world.

One must question any numbers as to their validity, your numbers support what I was trying to say with much higher numbers. It would be nice to verify them only to pin down the truth.

On the other hand, protesters at town hall meetings could care less.

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By Rodger Lemonde, August 11, 2009 at 4:55 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

WRITE OR PHONE YOUR CONGRESSMAN
Tell them you want decent health care.
Single payer would do the most good.
A public option is alright.
The staus quo where your insurance company operates like a fixed lottery is not to be allowed to continue.
If the congress person is known to take money from health care interests mention that they need not count on your vote.
If they are party hacks they won’t hack much if they don’t get reelected.

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By Brad K., August 11, 2009 at 4:01 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I recall the “Grandmas and babies exterminated by Obama ‘health’ plan” argument in Victoria Jackson’s blog entry. 

Victora Jackson, the SNL comedienne. 

Ms. Jackson is a thinking and voting citizen, so of course her perspective is valid.  However, I am not aware of her credentials as an authority on anything outside of comedy and entertainment.  No disrespect to Ms. Jackson, nor to any of her education or life experiences that I was unaware of.

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By DBM, August 11, 2009 at 3:44 pm Link to this comment

Just to assist with the dialog here ... the Norquist crowd appear to have won a major battle.  They have cemented the idea that the reform bills will cost “One Trillion Dollars” so effectively that it is even parroted here on TruthDig.

Let’s be clear.  The Defence / Homeland Security / Dept of Energy (nuclear weapons division) and special military appropriations bill is well in excess of one trillion dollars PER YEAR.  The study which assessed the cost of the health care reform found that it would cost one trillion dollars OVER TEN YEARS.

The Republican noise machine latched on the the dollar number and have screamed it so loud that people have forgotten the time frame.

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By Jonathan5052, August 11, 2009 at 1:07 pm Link to this comment

From OzarkMichael:

“”“"But I am the only one with the nerve to fight it, while the rest of you just sit back and whine.

“”“"The Truthdig article is right. All the pharmaceutical companies are combining into the biggest lobby we have ever had, and dumping unprecendented MILLIONS into propaganda and influence peddling.

“”“"But I am the only one brave enough to take them on.

No wonder they always win.”“”“

My opinion here: It’s not that many of us have the nerve, but like President Obama, we have to answer to someone else.  When the President was running for the Oval Office last year, he said a lot of things that he had to revise the closer he got to winning the election.  Why? Because he has to pay back his supporters and keep them in his favor, just as George Bush before him.  Many of the people who participate in this forum don’t have the luxury to march in rallies or join protesters in large numbers at City Hall meetings because they may be putting their own jobs and livelihoods at risk - and in a few rare instances, their families’ safety as well.  Unfortunately, this is still a fact of life in these United States!  And if it wasn’t for independent media like Truthdig, Democracy Now, FAIR, and myriads of other traditional and online news sources, a lot more citizens would continue to be captives of news information from the corporate-run over-the-air, cable and traditional news outlets, which are the unofficial mouthpieces of the government and purveyors of government propaganda. How can you expect the masses to organize and respond with true opposition to business as usual when the information reaching their eyes and ears has already been sanitized and filtered for consumption?  Another reason why Uncle Sam and the corporations want to have control of the Internet, the last free frontier of independent thought and dialogue.

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By OzarkMichael, August 11, 2009 at 10:23 am Link to this comment

martha, i dont mind discussing Hitler with you but we already have our own forum where we can fight like dogs and ducks.

This forum is talking about Healthcare and the evil drug corporations that combine in secret meetings with the government. That connection is said to be a sign of fascism. Imagine if the big drug companies all combine and pour unprecedented millions into a propaganda campaign to influence the outcome of the healthcare debate. Imagine secret meetings with a politician where billions are pledged to their evil cause.

It has to stop. Now.

But I am the only one with the nerve to fight it, while the rest of you just sit back and whine.

The Truthdig article is right. All the pharmaceutical companies are combining into the biggest lobby we have ever had, and dumping unprecendented MILLIONS into propaganda and influence peddling.

But I am the only one brave enough to take them on.

No wonder they always win.

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By Night-Gaunt, August 11, 2009 at 10:03 am Link to this comment

When you purposely go in to disrupt and shut down forums those people should be escorted out forth with. No free speech when there is no give and take.

MarthaA whatever we do and say it is subjective because it goes through the filtering process of our minds. All things are subjective. You can’t escape it, the best you can do is to acknowledge it and work to broaden you perspectives on things. Even so you can’t escape it no matter how many times you say OBJECTIVE in your writings. Every read Naomi Wolf “The End of America” recently? It shows that there is a general plan to take overs and those who do it learn from others, Hitler learned from Mussolini and Stalin saw things to use from the NSDAP and so on. Our gov’t has overthrown and supported and trained dictatorships since 1953 at least. So they have vast experience in doing so. “So why not here?”, I said. Lo an behold they have been at it here. This disruption is just one such tactic as you said MarthaA.

One of the things that Naomi Wolf found that the transition from a democracy to a dictatorship happened when the democratic process was stifled and shut down. These town meetings are doing just that. The SA weren’t the only ones pulling that.

Unlike Thomas Jefferson who kept slaves and therefor compromised on liberty for all I like Thomas Paine who lived it and urged the new nation of the USA to end slavery. A far better model I think. Along with Emma Goldman & Petre Kropotikin too.

“No Gods no Masters”

Or for those who want and have a God, then “No masters but ourselves individually.” [People misread Marx about the opiate of the peoples which it is. He just wanted them to fight for their rights too. Not just suffer in silence over the tyranny of the business with their religious beliefs as a calming pallative.]

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By tropicgirl, August 11, 2009 at 9:08 am Link to this comment

Adele.

Don’t get your panties all bunched up over how groups organize. If Obama and the Democrats weren’t playing the same game and cozying up to all these people, and appointing them to positions in govt, squandering his chances for real reform, things would be a little calmer. This is a performance designed to rake in more money for the political powers.

The conservatives know that many people trying to organize them, like the radio personalities and the evangelicals are working with the neocons, for big business, bailouts, free-for-all trade which has stolen their jobs. It does not matter. What matters is, in the end, that they have begun to use their voice. Its is a good thing.

Obama and the democrats did the same thing. They got elected by promising the base all sorts of reform. They did a slick PR thing. They “organized”. And their organizing umbrella, Acorn, was actually on the payroll. Then what happened, the left was shafted. Ideas of peace, transparency, torture accountability, single payer, out the window. The point is, the chickens do come home to roost. There will always be a better, slicker, sneakier PR campaign if that is all you rely on to get elected.

Progressives have a lot to be concerned about with Obama’s health care plan.
1. If it is just about reforming health insurers, why does it cost a trillion?
2. The public option is dead in both versions, despite confusing signals.
3. Medicare will be slashed to the tune of about 600 Billion. Tell me how that is good.
4. The public will be subject to the biggest big brother IT experiment of all time. All personal and financial information will be consolidated and available to whatever stakeholder bribes congress. The old folks do not want this.
5. The elderly also have a legitimate concern about their continued access to treatment. This is not funny, or a joke. Elderly already have their options limited by insurance companies. Government cant wait to do the same thing. Its natural.
6. Progressives and liberals also should have concerns about the “government counselors” that apparently are going to be sent out to “advise” parents and children of the elderly. I smell the selling of vaccines to the unwilling here.
7. And again, we have the funneling of vast amounts of money to health insurance companies as “incentives”. The only “incentive” needed here are strict laws against screwing the public and competition. That is not expensive.
8.  Lastly, you CANNOT control what salaries and profits are made by legitimate American corporations. It is AGAINST the LAW. The problem is that private corporations are even INVOLVED in health care. Until there is a legitimate public single payer system, you will always have the profit-taking on the sick.

These are things that the right and left, those who are honest, have serious questions about. And add to that the failure of the stimulus, the “bank heist” as it is commonly known, and the fact that no one reads these bills, it should be killed.

Democrats and liberals can only succeed in this culture if they do something good, right, true and ethical.

When they become sick and cancerous, like cheap, sold out politicians, then the public holds them to much greater scrutiny. (Reid, et al)

The majority of people want a single payer option (over 80%). That is the only way to regain a semblance of credibility. That is why Obama deserves to fail here.

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By MarthaA, August 11, 2009 at 8:34 am Link to this comment

Patrick Henry,

Who are you describing as “we”?

You have made subjective assertions and obviously are trying to evoke a causal response.  This was the technique Hitler used to take control of dialog in the Weimar Republic of Germany.

This technique worked well for Hitler, but I do not expect that it is going to work as well for you and your Right-Wing Conservative EXTREMIST Disrupters as it did for Hitler, because we are now aware of who and what you are.

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By MarthaA, August 11, 2009 at 8:18 am Link to this comment

OzarkMichael,

Why do you try to evoke a causal response to subjective assertions?

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By MarthaA, August 11, 2009 at 7:28 am Link to this comment

To All on this blog:

OzarkMichael appears to be a FRAUD, who threatens to post objectively, but never answers anything and everything he posts is something subjective.

He claims to be a Christian but will not answer why the Catholics helped Hitler, and that should be able to be easily answered.  I have serious doubts that OzarkMichael is a Christian, because of the deceit.

Again, I ask Ozark-Michael; In Germany, the Catholics assisted Hitler—- Why did the Catholic church aid and abet Hitler’s take over of the liberal Weimar Republic?  It appears the OzarkMichael is like the Disturbers at the Town Hall Meetings, not wanting to have any REAL dialog.  Is that true OzarkMichael?  Are you afraid?  Explain yourself, without subjective dribble.

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By MarthaA, August 11, 2009 at 7:28 am Link to this comment

To All on this blog:

OzarkMichael appears to be a FRAUD, who threatens to post objectively, but never answers anything and everything he posts is something subjective.

He claims to be a Christian but will not answer why the Catholics helped Hitler, and that should be able to be easily answered.  I have serious doubts that OzarkMichael is a Christian, because of the deceit.

Again, I ask Ozark-Michael; In Germany, the Catholics assisted Hitler—- Why did the Catholic church aid and abet Hitler’s take over of the liberal Weimar Republic?  Is OzarkMichael like the Disturbers at the Town Hall Meetings, not wanting to have any REAL dialog.  Is that true OzarkMichael?  Are you afraid?  Explain yourself, without subjective dribble.

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By Leefeller, August 11, 2009 at 7:17 am Link to this comment

If one is against a National Heath Care plan, please explain why?

It seems health care would be accepted with open arms by most of the people, why do those opposed to it oppose it with such vigor? 

Every argument heard against Health Care seems empty in argument, please explain why it is most important for those who loudly oppose a medical care plan to enforce their wishes against a plan,  on those who want it?  Do you really believe health care is the coming of socialism?  More importantly are those opposed to health care, feel they cannot stomach a feather in the cap of a black president, which may make him a great president?  No we cannot have any feathers in Obama’s hat, for that may lead to more feathers.

Insulting ones inelegance with such ignorance, by constant lack of argument is most disappointing and again hypocritical as is usually the case of ignorance.  Here we have a nation which fosters wars with regularity and supports a Military which costs circa one Trillion Dollars a year to support, but the same people who do not blink an eye on this madness, oppose a Health Plan because it may cost circa a Trillion Dollars a year to support.  My numbers may be wrong, but the merit is the same.  So far I have not heard one worthy argument in support of existing Medical Insurance, except loud noise.

My vote is for a National Health Care Plan, please provide some reasons why it should not be?

If Bush had supported one thing I believed in, I would have supported it with open arms, but Bush did nothing for the people.  If we acquire a National Health Plan under Obama, I will be grateful for my family, this plan could be a healthy addition to SSI and Medicare. 

Disrupting a meeting attacks civility and crass heckling is most ignorant and borders on unwanted lascivious advances to fellow citizens.

Follow the talking heads, for independent thought is not in the works for some, only grabbing straws.

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By josgood, August 11, 2009 at 6:23 am Link to this comment

Lumping all “gun enthusiasts” in with the morons involved in disrupting these townhalls is very disingenuous.  Save your anti 2nd Ammendment views for a column on that subject.  Nice try though.

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By DBM, August 11, 2009 at 5:55 am Link to this comment

“Patrick Henry” ... is that your alma mater??

Thanks for the calm and well worded recitation of right wing talking points.  A refreshing change from the best known commentators (Limbaugh, Beck, Coulter, et.al.) ... but like that other right wing parrot Bill Kristol, just plain wrong.

The arguments you make ignore the crux of the whole thing which everyone one on the right seems to miss.  Without change the current system will collapse.  The 80% of people with insurance will suffer as a result of thc collapse

The reasons why were pretty well put by “Outraged” in his last paragraphs and bear repeating:

“None of your supposed points address the rising insurance premiums, overpriced drugs, insurance companies dropping those with “pre-existing” conditions whether they exist or not, insurance companies OUTRIGHTLY refusing to insure some people, nor the BILLIONS in profits they’ve scammed from their customers.  Remember the database errors…. which fraudulently overcharged customers by the million/billions, I forget.  Then there were the deliberate overcharges (on site) and lets not forget them charging for NON-EXISTENT claims.

Do you work for United Health or are you simply a glutton for punishment?”

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By Shenonymous, August 11, 2009 at 5:52 am Link to this comment

As a sort of chess move in response to a suggestion elsewhere:  Precognition about the drug companies is swaggering and theatrical to call it an evil cause.  Words are so easily manipulated to concoct a slogan.  Collusion among the drug companies is also an invented scenario, but useful for sure to create a mood of “evil.”  Perhaps drug companies are co-conspirators, but I happen to think the insurance companies surmount and are the prime perpetrators of the evils of healthcare.  But, since it is only women who really care about the health of the world, we don’t have any balls, so we will leave that up to the impotent men who think they do to demand impeachment of drug companies, who, even with their accumulation of wealth, do provide new and useful products of life-saving medicines, and that is a public service, but since they are easier targets they fit well the only cacophonic strategy the impotents have except for reactive guns with bullets.  Women will keep focus on the essence of the problem:  insurance companies who are pouring trillions of dollars into defeating any kind of health care reform.

Are you really calling for big money to be taken out of the process OM or are you just feebly boasting here on a rather noxious but powerless electronic forum?  Are you really contacting those who do have any power to do so and do you think they will really pay any attention to you?  Are you offering to organize an impeachment movement where we may all join you since there is magic in numbers?  Ah, yes, action speaks louder than, uh… speech acts.

Sorry but gotta go for the day, so have at me what you will.  I will check in later to see what the firing squad has done.  I am probably dead.

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By OzarkMichael, August 11, 2009 at 4:35 am Link to this comment

The article makes much of the bad motive of the drug companies and I agree. They will lie and lobby and corrupt the process.

When those big drug companies support something, you just know before hand that it must be an evil cause. And you just know they make secret deals.  And you just know that in the secret meetings they will agree to spend MILLIONS to propagandize against the interests of the American people.

And you just know they are slipping money to someone under the table. When millions and billions are being promised in secret meetings, there is only one word to describe it: CORRUPTION!

The people who take that money are crooks. They should be exposed and scorned. If they hold office they must be impeached.!

Dont any of you realize this? Doesnt anyone have the courage to demand that big money be taken out of the process?

Doesnt anyone have the balls to demand the impeachment of politicians who hold secret meetings with big healthcare lobbyists and arrange megamillion dollar deals?

Or am I the only one?

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By Outraged, August 11, 2009 at 2:20 am Link to this comment

Re: PatrickHenry

Your comment: “My big heartburn with this issue is this: advocates for the “public option” fail to acknowledge that we already have a public option for those who cannot afford insurance, and it is called Medicaid.  A significant percentage of those identified as having “no health insurance” are eligible for Medicaid, but have not applied; getting them on the rolls will take a big chunk out of the “uninsured”.  Others say they cannot afford health insurance; if that is in fact the case, a change to the Medicaid rules to raise the financial “ceiling” could afford them coverage as well.”

Well… it appears you parrot well, but why don’t you back that up with some statistics and links to them also.  Please explain the medicaid qualification parameters that you claim to be so familiar with so that we can judge for ourselves.

“The rest fall into two categories: those who can afford insurance but choose not to have it - for them a change in the bankruptcy laws that will force them to pay their medical bills and not let them dodge the costs through bankruptcy should be sufficient to ensure that they either pay their bills, or realize the wisdom of obtaining insurance.”

This is ridiculous.  More people file bankruptcy because they can’t PAY their medical bills than for any other reason, many of these HAD insurance at the time.  In addition, what makes you think those that didn’t have insurance could afford to buy insurance. 

“That leaves only one group of people that do not have health coverage: those who are in this country in violation of our immigration laws.  I’ll say no more about that group; advocating upholding the law will only get me branded a racist.”

But you did say something “about that group”, are you claiming they are the cause of high insurance rates or the healthcare crisis?  What is the point you are trying to make by singling out “that group”?

None of your supposed points address the rising insurance premiums, overpriced drugs, insurance companies dropping those with “pre-existing” conditions whether they exist or not, insurance companies OUTRIGHTLY refusing to insure some people, nor the BILLIONS in profits they’ve scammed from their customers.  Remember the database errors…. which fraudulently overcharged customers by the million/billions, I forget.  Then there were the deliberate overcharges (on site) and lets not forget them charging for NON-EXISTENT claims.

Do you work for United Health or are you simply a glutton for punishment?

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By PatrickHenry, August 10, 2009 at 6:08 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Amazing the vitriol on here.  Maybe the moderator should take a look at the calls for violence in this thread and do the noble thing by taking down these maniacal and dangerous posts.

Fact is, there are Republican PACs encouraging people to turn out at these healthcare town halls and “voice their opinion”. I know this for a fact not because I read it somewhere, but because I have received several such messages.  They do not, however, tell anybody what to say or advocate anything but courteous and civil debate.

My big heartburn with this issue is this: advocates for the “public option” fail to acknowledge that we already have a public option for those who cannot afford insurance, and it is called Medicaid.  A significant percentage of those identified as having “no health insurance” are eligible for Medicaid, but have not applied; getting them on the rolls will take a big chunk out of the “uninsured”.  Others say they cannot afford health insurance; if that is in fact the case, a change to the Medicaid rules to raise the financial “ceiling” could afford them coverage as well.  The rest fall into two categories: those who can afford insurance but choose not to have it - for them a change in the bankruptcy laws that will force them to pay their medical bills and not let them dodge the costs through bankruptcy should be sufficient to ensure that they either pay their bills, or realize the wisdom of obtaining insurance.  That leaves only one group of people that do not have health coverage: those who are in this country in violation of our immigration laws.  I’ll say no more about that group; advocating upholding the law will only get me branded a racist.

Doing the above should “fix” the problem of the uninsured without the need for some new and unprecedented “public option” that, like the one enacted in the UK in the 1940’s, will eventually and inevitably lead to a single-payer national healthcare system with its attendant long lines, rationing, and low standard of care.

More importantly, it’s time the people of this country realized that the United States is not a totalitarian democratic dictatorship where the guy with the most votes “rules”.  This country was founded on the principle of the Rule of Law - meaning that the Constitution is the Supreme Law of the Land and that it (the Law, in the form of the Constitution) determines who has the authority to do what within the federation of republics that makes up the U.S.  And nowhere in the Constitution is the Federal Government (the central one in Washington we all know and love) authorized to legislate on the topic of healthcare or medicine!  So, those who advocate any sort of national health plan (even the illicit one we already have) are actually committing Treason themselves by calling for the government to act as dictators and subvert the rule of law and the very Constitution they have taken an oath to uphold!

That, friends, is what has most of the angry people I’ve seen on this topic up in arms.  Obama might have pulled this one off, had it not been for all those taxpayer-funded bailouts of the banksters, the auto companies (well, the UAW anyway), the Wall Street Financiers, and the irresponsible homeowners/home-buyers.  I’m not blaming Obama for that, Bush and the Republicans started it, but the Democrats are plainly in the pocket of Wall Street and Corporate America too.  The point is that the taxpayer is getting sick and tired of Washington giving her hard-earned money to fat cats in every struggling industry, and the bill for universal health care will be monstrous—if it’s like the prescription drug benefit the last administration added to Medicare/Medicaid, figure the actual cost will be SIXTY TIMES what the Congressional Budget Office and GAO estimate it will be. Bottom line: we can’t afford it, and our nation is already bankrupt in fact, if not in name.

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By garth, August 10, 2009 at 4:22 pm Link to this comment

I just saw Rep.  Niki Tsongas (D-Status Quo in MA) and it’s refeshing to hear someone so stupid.  “We are staying with the employer based plan because, well, uh, that’s the way it’s always been.”

When asked why the citizens can’t have the same plan she has, she started by saying that when she met with Congress PR person, “she was confronted with a terrific set of choices…”

I can’t imagine how any of these stumblebums will get re-elected.

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By hippie4ever, August 10, 2009 at 4:12 pm Link to this comment

When you regard the Corporation, it bears a striking similarity to a Nazi concentration camp, only it is moderated. The organization is identical, and politics and intrigue are all in place; everyone has a uniform.

Everyone has a price; everyone is convinced they are correct and everyone can be fooled. This forms the core of this Corporate Comedy Troupe only I’m not laughing, nor am I buying. If I was down and out I might do something I might later regret, because I was hungry. If that’s the case with these operatives, I could forgive them. Somehow, though, I doubt it; and have little doubt this comprises the families of those Brooks Brothers Fascists who stormed Miami in 2000. If not exactly, at least within the same klan.

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By Seth Stubbs, August 10, 2009 at 3:43 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Rabble rabble rabble. O the world of maudlin fools!

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By Paul_GA, August 10, 2009 at 3:36 pm Link to this comment

It’s not bullshit, Cognitis1; shutting people up because you disagree with them and hate them is a slippery slope, with dictatorship at the bottom.

“If there is any principle of the Constitution that more imperatively calls for attachment than any other, it is the principle of free thought – not free thought for those who agree with us, but freedom for the thought that we hate.” ~ Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.

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By KDelphi, August 10, 2009 at 2:35 pm Link to this comment

What are you talking about??!! You would think that the Dems need the GOP to f*ck things up! Au contraire! They are doing it just fine themselves with majorities all over the place!

The Dem “public option” is not going to do any of those things. And Obama is no more gongn to “rein in Wall St profits” than Bush! I am so confused…

I understand that these people are astro-turf corporate stooges…but what are the Democrats? They have NO ONE to blame but themselves fo rthis, putting Baucus in charge and arresting nurses—shame on the Dems. They have officially lost the real Left.

I know its been aid before, but Obama said, in 2003 that, what was needed, to pass single payer health care reform was “a Democratic House , Senate and presidency”...wtf is it?

Hell with the Democrats. You guys must enjoy abusive relationships.

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By Hulk2008, August 10, 2009 at 1:55 pm Link to this comment

I heard a radio commentator the other day mention that the fascism of the 20’s, 30’s and 40’s rose from the middle class - NOT from the poor.  Evil leaders and those who knew how to manipulate propaganda were able to convince the German people that they had been marginalized, first by their adversaries in WWI and then by their own government and then by wealthy members of minority groups.  They whipped up hatred of “outsiders” and “the elite” to achieve their own lust for power.  The middle class felt left out - and bearing the brunt of taxes and loss of income and status. 
  This sounds all too familiar:  those with special interests who were beaten in the last couple of elections are now blaming “illegal aliens”, “elitists”, “socialists”, and so-called spendthrifts for every ill known to mankind from flagrant overspending to phony euthenasia plots.  And instead of intellectual discourse, they resort to shout-downs and innuendo and the support of talking heads who benefit from their disillusionment.
  Now all it will take is for some charismatic insane boob to come along and lead the angry mob into a tragic repetition of the past.

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By bogi666, August 10, 2009 at 1:51 pm Link to this comment

The shills are just the American Brown Shirts equivalence to Hitlers S.A., the NAZI Brown Shirts, the street thugs. The only way to counter these town hall goons is in the streets with violence. They seem to all be geriatric types, easy beat up. With any luck gun shots will result.

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By Donald Meinshausen, August 10, 2009 at 1:12 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I’m a former SDS chapter chair. who was a former political prisoner under George Bush. I’m still a proud anti war activist, feminist and hate the government’s fascist role in the drug war and strangling civil liberties.
While I was happy to see Obama elected I realize that he has sold us out to the banksters with bailouts to the rich and more war. His insurance schemes are nothing but a payoff to the big unions, big corporations and their allies. I do not want my health care to be run by such scum. He is nothing more than LBJ in blackface. I support the tax revolt and any others in smashing the state. There has never been an honest, efficient or humane state ever. Let’s stop paying taxes and dance when the state falls. Ron Paul is right. This is why I read Rockwell Report.

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By cognitis1, August 10, 2009 at 12:45 pm Link to this comment

Paul:

I’ll respond to bullshit with bullshit: by suppressing savage beastly gangs collected and incited by tyrants, literate rational citizens liberate the beasts from their tyrannical masters’ chains and correct the beasts’ savage conduct for civil disputation; should literate rational citizens shoot a few of the most savage beasts in order to suppress the gangs, well…can’t make an omelet without breaking eggs, huh?

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By Paul_GA, August 10, 2009 at 12:26 pm Link to this comment

Martha, before you shout too much more about doing something to shut the right-wingers up, consider this:

“Necessity is the plea for every infringement of human freedom. It is the argument of tyrants; it is the creed of slaves.” ~ William Pitt (the Younger; 1759-1806), British statesman

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By Bud, August 10, 2009 at 11:53 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I am not violent by nature,nor do I even own a gun.However,if these right wing nut jobs want a violent confrontation,there are more than enough people on the left to accomadate them with our own brand of violence!!These nut cases have fired the first shot.

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By MarthaA, August 10, 2009 at 11:03 am Link to this comment

ORGANIZED ASSERTIVE SUBJECTIVE DEHUMANIZING SOPHIST POLITICAL PROPAGANDA

While there is still time law and order must be legislated and enforced to regulate the use of ORGANIZED ASSERTIVE SUBJECTIVE DEHUMANIZING POLITICAL SOPHIST PROPAGANDA; this is sophistry and propaganda that is harmful to National Security; this was done to the Weimar Republic in Germany and we all know what happened there; if we in the United States do not want the same thing to happen here, it is time to act and prohibit the assertive use of ORGANIZED SUBJECTIVE DEHUMANIZING POLITICAL SOPHISTRY and ORGANIZED SUBJECTIVE DEHUMANIZING POLITICAL PROPAGANDA, as a means to exercise POWER and CONTROL by the few to oppress and tyrannize the many, by making ORGANIZED SUBJECTIVE DEHUMANIZING POLITICAL SOPHISTRY and ORGANIZED SUBJECTIVE DEHUMANIZING POLITICAL PROPAGANDA a crime of conspiracy against the National Security of the United States.

I am in no way suggesting an impingement on the free speech of individual citizens.  What I am saying is that when organizations use ASSERTIVE ORGANIZED SUBJECTIVE DEHUMANIZING POLITICAL SOPHISTRY and ASSERTIVE ORGANIZED SUBJECTIVE DEHUMANIZING POLITICAL PROPAGANDA that rises to the level of a clear, present and imminent danger to the security of the United States as a nation, this type of behavior must be criminalized and punished as a treasonable offense to the National Security of the United States.

TREASON:  The offense of attempting by overt acts to overthrow the government of the state to which the offender owes allegiance; or of betraying the state into the hands of a foreign power.

This thread has provided evidence of treasonable offenses by a vast network of organizations who are through overt action trying to overthrow the government of the United States.

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By Jonathan5052, August 10, 2009 at 11:01 am Link to this comment

From Fat Freddy:

“... show her some HTML tags. I can’t read that crap.”

http://www.w3schools.com/html/html_formatting.asp


Mr. Freddy, you are so funny!  But you gotta admit, Ms. Martha did get her point across.  TD is a great place to get it off your chest…or out of your brain, yes?

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By cognitis1, August 10, 2009 at 10:58 am Link to this comment

Literate rational citizens act fallaciously, when they presume all citizens to be literate and rational; the greatest part of the cited protestors only repeated slogans provided for them, and they congregated only at locations and at times provided for them: these “citizens” are not equal participants in democracy with interests and opinions, but rather they are just slaves to PAC or other Media masters. Should literate and rational citizens estimate such slaves to menace democracy, they must first presume these slaves to be similar to oxen or sheepdogs—beasts defective in capacity for independent cogitation—before acting; rational humans do not dispute with pit-bulls that have been ordered by a dictatorial master to assault him.

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By Paul_GA, August 10, 2009 at 10:50 am Link to this comment

And what if they get out of hand? What if no one can control what the “town-hall meetings” and the “tea parties” have unleashed?

Well, as Thomas Jefferson said: “The spirit of resistance to government is so valuable on certain occasions that I wish it to be always kept alive. It will often be exercised when wrong, but better so than not to be exercised at all.”

And: “What country before ever existed a century and a half without a rebellion? And what country can preserve its liberties if their rulers are not warned from time to time that their people preserve the spirit of resistance?”

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By Rodger Lemonde, August 10, 2009 at 10:41 am Link to this comment

The most offensive part of this is that the victims are being used as shields and shills for the health complex by cynical hired gun propaganda machines.
The only way to get decent health care in this country is to nationalize the whole mess. Otherwise pray or hope that your body dies before your bank account.
What ever you believe about health care the whole problem is $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$
and the people who are harvesting it.

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By BlueBerry Pick'n, August 10, 2009 at 10:33 am Link to this comment

ah, the irony.
Democrats, insisting that Republicans are the problem…
while happy to forget what they managed to do to Kucinich, McKinney…
& the Nader campaigns

During the election, one couldn’t say the word ‘Nader’ without a barrage of Americans freaking out.

Remember all the LOVELY things Democrats had to say about Nader? 
I do.
...I seem to recall the hysteria & misery of mentioning Nader in front of Democrats. I also remember the ‘go back where you fucking belong, Canadian!’ comments I got during conversations when politely defending his decades of dedication & hard work…
I also remember the ‘fuck you, I wanna make myself a HUGE career’ contemptuous & barely factual assault no Nader by Randi Rhodes for her Air America debut.  Randi shocked me, & not in a good way.  She’s done so much GOOD, but her attack on Nader was a simply horrific blow against everything good & decent about that man.
She cheapened herself by selling HIS decades of hard work: for her advantage, the DNC & the corruption of a 2-party system.

I remember all of this:  & so should YOU.
I also remember an ‘08 conversation I had with Ralph in Toronto.
I also remember the freaked out, American bitch who stood up & start RAVING about him.

Obstructionism?  yeah, from a Democrat.  in another country.
yabbling about Americanism & on & on & on… GARSH, whodah thunk it wasn’t just post-election Republicans? 

The several hundred Canadians sat politely & listened to her rave in her hostility on & on ...
...we weren’t there to HEAR the gringo bitch & moan, but we sure got a chance to do just that.

At the time, I asked him what people can do in a culture where consumerism, contempt, disrespect & xenophobia seemed to be the primary cultural export of the United States. 
He recommended a book.

I recommend:  BLOCKING AMERICAN CONTENT from Canada.

I can’t fucking take all this American bullshit much longer.
Its like a pounding migraine.

Can’t you people get your shit together?
...or stop EXPORTING IT TO EVERYBODY ELSE?

The only thing the US seems to export anymore is
propaganda,
militarization of commerce & trade,
death,
privatization,
human rights violations (including SURVEILLANCE & BIOMETRIC TRACKING OF THE GLOBE’S CITIZENS)
&
social contempt for THE OTHER FEW BILLION FOLKS WHO ARE THEIR NEIGHBOURS.

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By Fat Freddy, August 10, 2009 at 10:28 am Link to this comment

Damn, someone take away MarthaA’s Caps Lock button and show her some HTML tags. I can’t read that crap.

http://www.w3schools.com/html/html_formatting.asp

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By Fat Freddy, August 10, 2009 at 10:23 am Link to this comment

I really don’t think the insurance companies are behind this. Here’s why: I think it is unlikely that any government funded plan will actually be managed and implemented by the government. The government will subsidize a few of the larger insurance companies to run the plan. That’s about the same as a cash giveaway to the insurance companies. Maybe even worse. It will drive out what’s left of any free market competition from the smaller companies.

These people are just wackos looking for a cause. Whether it’s school prayer, abortion, gay marriage, whatever. And there are more than a few politicians looking to capitalize on their support.

Most of the people are close to Medicare, if they are not already. My favorite line is:

“I don’t want the government interfering with my Medicare!”

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By MarthaA, August 10, 2009 at 10:11 am Link to this comment

OBJECTIVE and SUBJECTIVE ASSERTIONS in Political Discourse

RIGHT-WING Subjective Political Sophist Dehumanizing Propaganda Must STOP.

Only OBJECTIVE ASSERTIONS are causal in nature and require a causal response.  When cause does not exist there is no effect to either prove or disprove; no response is required to a SUBJECTIVE ASSERTION, other than a SUBJECTIVE ASSERTION.

For over forty years now, the RIGHT-WING CONSERVATIVE EXTREMIST REPUBLICANS of the REPUBLICAN PARTY have been, with the ire of a vengeful god, FRAMING their SUBJECTIVE ASSERTIONS, the dialog of their sophist propaganda, in a way that asks for and requires a causal response to propaganda of SUBJECTIVE SOPHIST ASSERTIONS:  Passive acceptance of this type of political behavior isn’t even marginally acceptable and must end.

Metrics must be applied to OBJECTIVE ASSERTIONS and be answered with OBJECTIVE ASSERTIONS, and metrics must be applied to SUBJECTIVE ASSERTIONS and be answered with SUBJECTIVE ASSERTIONS.

SUBJECTIVE ASSERTIONS are used to require OBJECTIVE ANSWERS by those who feel that they are superior to those that they are engaged in dialogue with; this type of behavior should be OFFENSIVE to those who are required by SUBJECTIVE SOPHIST PROPAGANDA to make OBJECTIVE RESPONSE: With the ire of a vengeful God; I strongly suggest SUBJECTIVE ASSERTIONS as the ONLY appropriate response to SUBJECTIVE ASSERTIONS.

If there is going to be respect between the Right and the Left, what goes around from the Right will have to come back around from the Left.

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By Night-Gaunt, August 10, 2009 at 9:54 am Link to this comment

The videos crudeness is only surpassed by its crass misrepresentations and obvious hysterical histrionic malapropisms in it. Bush and company fit better but then Obama is carrying on the Great Work previous laid down starting with Reagan and moving through all the presidents to today. He may not know that he is a tool and that the Cabal really doesn’t like his “kind” but find it useful at this juncture. The front man is just the facade of the conspiracy. He doesn’t know everything about it.

I wonder what they promised him as reward for his own acts of infamy?

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By Jonathan5052, August 10, 2009 at 9:53 am Link to this comment

Using Hitler to stir up the people and the races!  How diabolic!  Hitler wouldn’t even stand in the presence of a black athlete to shake his hand, let alone allow himself to be compared to a black President!  What galaxy did these right-wing storytellers come from?  Dirty politics gone to the gutter, the power elite on the warpath to do anything necessary to maintain the status quo and prolong the illnesses of uninsured U.S. citizens everywhere.  It’s a real shame that the voters are getting hooked, skinned and cooked all over again!

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By laurence hegarty, August 10, 2009 at 8:44 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

for all their derogatory talk of the elite (media, hollywood, washington etc.etc.), the reality is that these bullies must be the HEATHCARE ELITE. they obviously don’t have friends or family who’ve been denied care, waited for hours at emergency rooms for basic medical care or been bankrupted by catastrophic medical costs. if they had they wouldn’t be acting this way, unless of course they’re simply self centered, angry and mean.
sorry i forgot who i was talking about, that’s the republican manifesto.

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By Joe Hill, August 10, 2009 at 8:34 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Unfortunately this article misses the bigger picture. What we are witnessing is an epic fight between the drug companies et al versus the insurance companies et al.

The Dummycrat’s plan will shovel more money into the pockets of the health insurance industry, and naturally the drug companies don’t like that.

Us peons, our health, and especially our opinions are irrelevant as various factions of the Establishment fight over a rapidly shrinking pie.

I’m putting my ‘money’ (as if I actually had any) on the FIRE sector - that’s Financial, Insurance, Real Estate. They have obviously captured the US Government, and they are not about to turn it loose.

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By DBM, August 10, 2009 at 6:14 am Link to this comment

Same old Same old ... this reminds you of the “angry mob” that stopped the Florida recount in 2000?

http://broadcatching.wordpress.com/2009/08/09/fake-florida-2000-election-protesters-are-back-at-town-halls-congressional-aides-pimply-faced-interns-and-the-usual-wonk-dregs/

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By M Currey, August 10, 2009 at 4:39 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

If making Obama look like Hitler is going to work I think most Americans who believe this have lost their minds.

It is changing a black man into a white man with all the hate that Hitler had, I fair to see what this accomplishes after all Hitler hated blacks (especially African Americans) and the Jewish people.

Obama did create large followings but no where near how many followers followed Hitler.  He did not create brownshirts to beat down the opposition he was elected by the people, some of them were brown and black but a lot were also white, and if those on the far right hate that so be it.

If bad makes right than surely this country will go under.  But to say that out President must be killed is going against the grain of most Americans.  Hate must not win and if it does win than those dead that fought in World War II must surely be turning over in their graves.

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By M Currey, August 10, 2009 at 4:25 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Some of the protesters at the town hall meetings allready have their medicare so can they feel for those who have no medical coverage seems as though these people do not think too much.

When I was younger I had no health coverage and I was fairly healthy until I developed Bell’s Palsey (a condition that will improve slightly with time) because I had to go to a Charity Hospital and the nurse practacationer did not know enough about the disease she priscribed pain medication even when I told her I had had the condition before so when I saw a speceliast it was too late to reverse the disease.  Five years later I still have the effects of Bell’s Palsey.  No health coverage will cover acupuncture so I pay out of pocket on my “so called” benefits from social security.

These people who are so insensetative cannot fool all of the people.  Obama was put into office by more than half of the people.  The fringe should not win just because they can shout the loudest.

When Bush was running for president what happened at these town hall meetings were not allowed to happen looks as though the reublician party are the new natzies that want to take down this government.

These people (good antiabortion Christians) want to kill our President.  Where is their Christian upbringing? 

They depend on the dumbing down of education to say Obama is not an American citizen even though his mother is an American, I have even read on the internet that she was not old enough for her son to be a citizen, seems as though they spout words that are not in the Consitution.  Believe me the south does not have laws that are supported by the Constitution and a lot of ingorance does come from southern states because their education system is really lacking.  Ignorance is Bliss so the saying goes sure hope it does not run our government.

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