Thursday, August 27, 2009

Republican Congressional Support And Encouragement Of The Lunatic Fringe

by Ron Powell

Some Republican lead town hall meetings are taking on the aura of KKK meetings or White Supremicist, or Militia Movement meetings. Where's the discussion or debate about health care or anything else for that matter?

Town Hall Meetings, like the two shown here, are becoming witches
kitchens where ignorance, stupidity, and fear are being stirred in with overtly racist language and not-so-veiled threats of violence, insurrection, and sedition.

Congressman Wally Herger (R-California) praises self-proclaimed birther and right-wing terrorist, Burt Stead, as a good American.

Newly elected Kansas congresswoman, Lynne Jenkins, said that her remark about fellow Republicans struggling to find a "great white hope", was not a reference to someone who could challenge President Barack Obama or his political agenda.


Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Edward M. Kennedy, The Lion Of The Senate, Dies At 77

(February 22, 1932 – August 25, 2009)

AP- HYANNIS PORT, Mass. – Massachusetts Sen. Edward M. Kennedy, the liberal lion of the Senate, has died after battling a brain tumor. He was 77.

Kennedy's family announced his death in a brief statement released early Wednesday.

For nearly a half-century in the Senate, Kennedy was a dominant voice on health care, civil rights, war and peace, and more. To the American public, though, he was best known as the last surviving brother of a storied political family.

Kennedy was elected to the Senate in 1962, when his brother John was president, and served longer than all but two senators in history.

Over the decades, Kennedy put his imprint on every major piece of social legislation to clear the Congress.

The youngest of the Kennedy brothers, considered the least likely to have an impact, and in many ways the most consequential. So closely after the death of his sister, Eunice Kennedy Shriver, the Kennedy family must grieve again and again the nation must grieve with them....

After the death of President John Kennedy, LBJ picked up the banner of justice and equality and so it was that a Southerner from Texas was able to get The Civil Rights Act and The Voting Rights Act through congress. In many ways this was done in memory of his predecessor in office JFK....

This congress has the opportunity to pass the Edward M. Kennedy Health Care and Insurance Reform Act ( with a public option, not as a sliver, but as the center piece) in honor of the Lion, now gone, who spent a significant portion of his career on trying to repair the broken system for the benefit of the common person.........

Monday, August 24, 2009

The Cost Of Profit In Health Care

by Ron Powell

On several occasions I have written about the matter of health care reform and have indicated in posts and comments that there can't be true reform of the healthcare system without removing profit and the profit motive from the equation. At the moment the debate and discussions center around reduction of costs and the notion of a "public option" being the primary element in any proposal that purports to reduce the costs involved in the delivery of health care services.

It has been my contention that "costs" are the euphamism or code for profits. In other words, I believe that if we can reduce or eliminate profits we can reduce or eliminate costs. This is what the insurers and providers are acutely aware of and are fighting against. They know that when the government gets involved the gravy train will come to a screeching halt.

Over the past several years the insurance companies have reaped record profits without any improvements to the system of health care. How does this happen? It happens in any number of ways: increase of premiums, increase of deductibles, increase of co-payments, denial of coverage, cancellation of coverage and the denial of claims. All of this is designed to enhance revenue streams while reducing or eliminating risk by reducing or eliminating the obligation to make payments within the context of the language of health insurance contracts.

If you have health insurance my suggestion is to read it, all of it, especially the fine print. You may discover why many of the people who have been driven into financial ruin as a result of a catastrophic illness, are people who have health care insurance.

Having a health care insurance policy is not the equivalent of having health care coverage and that is where the mother load of profits are for health care insurers. I am a veteran so I'm covered with a government financed/controlled option and in a couple of years I will qualify for medicare as well, so I'm good to go.

However, there are a vast number of people between the ages of 25 and 65 who are paying for health care insurance, either directly or through employer group plans, for whom the insurance companies do not intend provide coverage i.e. payment on claims.

Banks and credit card companies have been loan sharking for years. The health care insurance companies have been engaged in a protection racket also designed to cheat and gouge the public. When all is said and done, reform of the way in which business is done in this country will require revisiting the notion of what is legal and what is not.

The conservative element has had decades to undo what had been done to ensure that the public was protected from unscrupulous business practices. The process of the systematic deregulation and removal of controls from profit-driven free market enterprises that are built on public trust and confidence must be reversed. In order to restore sanity to the debates and discussions the 900 pound profit gorilla has to be removed from the room or it will continue to wreak havoc and nothing will get done, nothing will change and we all know we can't afford that.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Is Newt Gingrich The Reason Why The Right Is Ahead In The War Of Words?

by Ron Powell

One of the key elements of Republican success in controlling the current discussion/debate about health care is their use and manipulation of the languagae of the discourse. The Republicans distribute talking points with the intention of controlling what is said. In addition they are adept at providing instruction and insight as to how to say it.....

Newt Gingrich's 1996 GOPAC memo:

Language: A Key Mechanism of Control

In the GOP training video "We are a Majority," Language is listed as a key mechanism of control used by a majority party, along with Agenda, Rules, Attitude and Learning. The video has been used in training sessions and mailed to Republican candidates and operatives across the country. Speaking like Newt Gingrich takes years of practice. But, the belief was/is that doing so could have a significant impact on a campaign and the way candidates and operatives communicate with a little help . That is why we have created this list of words and phrases.

This list is prepared so that you might have a directory of words to use in writing literature and mail, in preparing speeches, and in producing electronic media. The words and phrases are powerful. Read them. Memorize as many as possible. And remember that like any tool, these words will not help if they are not used.

While the list could be the size of the latest "College Edition" dictionary, we have attempted to keep it small enough to be readily useful yet large enough to be broadly functional. The list is divided into two sections: Optimistic Positive Governing words and phrases to help describe your vision for the future of your community (your message) and Contrasting words to help you clearly define the policies and record of your opponent and the Democratic party.

Please let us know if you have any other suggestions or additions. We would also like to know how you use the list. Call us at GOPAC or write with your suggestions and comments. We may include them in the next tape mailing so that others can benefit from your knowledge and experience.

Optimistic Positive Governing Words

Use the list below to help define your campaign and your vision of public service. These words can help give extra power to your message. In addition, these words help develop the positive side of the contrast you should create with your opponent, giving your community something to vote for!

active(ly), activist, building, candid(ly), care(ing), challenge, change, children, choice/choose, citizen, commitment, common sense, compete, confident, conflict, control, courage, crusade, debate, dream, duty, eliminate good-time in prison, empower(ment), fair, family,freedom, hard work , help, humane, incentive, initiative, lead learn, legacy, liberty, light, listen, mobilize, moral, movement, opportunity, passionate, peace, pioneer, precious, premise, preserve, principle(d), pristine, pro- (issue): flag, children, environment, reform, prosperity, protect, proud/pride, provide, reform, rights, share, strength, success, tough, truth, unique,vision, we/us/our

Contrasting Words

Often we search hard for words to define our opponents. Sometimes we are hesitant to use contrast. Remember that creating a difference helps you. These are powerful words that can create a clear and easily understood contrast. Apply these to the opponent, their record, proposals and their party:

abuse of power, anti- (issue): flag, family, child, jobs, betray, bizarre, bosses, bureaucracy, cheat, coercion, "compassion" is not enough, collapse(ing), consequences, corrupt, corruption, criminal rights, crisis, cynicism, decay, deeper, destroy, destructive, devour, disgrace, endanger, excuses, failure (fail), greed, hypocrisy, ideological, impose, incompetent, insecure, insensitive, intolerant, liberal, lie, limit(s), machine, mandate(s), obsolete, pathetic, patronage, permissive attitude, pessimistic, punish (poor ...), radical, red tape, self-serving, selfish, sensationalists, shallow, shame, sick, spend(ing), stagnation, status quo, steal, taxes, they/them, threaten, traitors, unionized, urgent (cy), waste, welfare

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

What Do You Know About The History Of Health Care Insurance?

by Ron Powell

There have been a number of blogs about healthcare reform proposals recently, and there will no doubt be more before it comes to a vote in congress. Most bloggers, including me, are not old enough to have first hand memories of the major events and forces that shaped the system as we know it today. Health care insurance in America has an interesting history.

The first insurance plans weren't for "health" insurance at all. In the 1900s some Americans began buying "sickness insurance". Around 1900, workers wanted insurance that covered paid sick days and were not as interested in more expensive medical benefit insurance. They purchased industrial "sickness insurance" through employers. Since medical treatments were relatively ineffective then, the insurance was meant to cover wages lost while a person was too sick to work. Imitating benevolent societies, industrial sickness (sick day) insurance companies raised money from entertainments as well as membership dues and held social events for members. They sold beer.

In 1908, the average "establishment" (employer) insurance plan had 730 members in workplaces of 1,652 workers, so approximately 44 percent of potentially covered workers were actually covered. A 1909 audit of early life and "sickness" insurance plans showed that fewer than 5 percent had actuarial data. During the depression, hospitals were suffering from a lack of patients, so they began offering prepaid hospital care as a way to get a steady stream of income.

The first modern employee group benefit plan was an agreement between Dallas County public school teachers and Baylor Hospital in 1929. The Baylor Plan was organized by a hospital administrator who had previously been a school superintendent.

The American Hospital Association was afraid that hospitals would begin competing with each other for patients, thus reducing revenues for everybody. So they formed Blue Cross, with the help of legislation that enabled them to avoid the requirements of reserve requirements that true insurance companies had to have to guaranty solvency. Physicians, who were largely unaffiliated at that time, became concerned that Blue Cross would lead to hospitals insuring for, and providing, physician services in competition with them, causing their fees and income to drop. So the AMA preempted this by forming its own "insurance" plan for physician services, called Blue Shield.

The biggest boost to these private health insurance plans came from World War II. The Wage Stabilization Act of 1942 was enacted to prevent rapid wage escalation due to the shortage of available labor during wartime. But that act also allowed companies to use other incentives to attract workers, and gave favorable tax treatment to employer paid health insurance. In 1944, the Baylor Plan merged into Blue Cross Blue Shield of Texas. By that time, more than 3 million Americans were covered by Blue Cross Blue Shield policies.

As part of the deal that enabled Blue Cross and Blue Shield to avoid the restrictions insurance companies faced, they were required to charge premiums based on a "community rating" system. That is, they had to charge the same premium to healthy people as they charged sicker ones. This opened the door for other companies to enter the increasingly lucrative health insurance market. Since most large companies tended to employ workforces that were younger and more healthy than society as a whole, they could cherry pick those companies and either avoid insuring people who would likely incur profit draining claims, or charge higher premiums to those groups.

When Medicare was first adopted in 1965, legislators feared that doctors would refuse to treat patients covered by that plan. So they agreed to reimburse doctors for their services at their "usual, customary and reasonable rate", and allowed them to bill their patients directly. In this way, doctors were able to charge patients more than Medicare would pay, forcing them to pay the difference. Medicare payments began spiraling out of control, reimbursement policy underwent major change in 1983. From then on, providers were reimbursed according to a set fee schedule based on diagnosis.

Today, the labor market is very different from the days when employer provided insurance became popular. Currently, there is no legal obligation for an employer to provide it, as long as they don't discriminate by offering it to some employees and not others. Just as many employers abandoned defined benefit pension plans when they became too costly, it is likely some will want to drop health insurance benefits as costs continue to rise.

Due to a combination of factors, such as an aging population, introduction of expensive diagnostic technology, skyrocketing malpractice awards and so on, health care expenditures in the US account for one of every six dollars of our gross domestic product (GDP). We spend 50% more per capita on health care than any other major country, and that gap is increasing every year.

With that as background, many Americans are reaching the conclusion that the status quo cannot be sustained. Yet any attempt to change it is met with hysterical opposition and demagoguery. The insurance companies, doctors, hospitals and pharmaceutical companies that are benefiting from the current system are pulling out all the stops to prevent changes to it.

There are no market forces that will keep the cost of healthcare from continuing to climb. Private industry practices which have resulted in their reaping obscene profits by discriminating against the very people they purport to cover and denying coverage to people who need it most or can’t afford to pay exorbitant premiums or deductibles are at the root of a process of economic erosion that is bankrupting American families at an alarming rate. They will eventually bankrupt the entire country if something is not done to alter the course we are on with things as they are.

Monday, August 17, 2009

Obama Must Learn To Play Hardball

by Ron Powell

It is time for President Obama to learn to play hardball and stop acting as though there is a legitimate basis upon which to build or develop bipartisanhip or compromise.

1. He ought to have learned by now, that there is no bipartisanhip or compromise to be had with people who have decided to be uncooperative regardless of the nature of ANY proposal that he puts forward on health care or anything else for that matter.

2. He should know by now, that if he and the Democrats remove any significant element from the health care reform measures being considered, it will be the Republicans who will claim victory even as they continue to refuse to participate in the legislative process that brings a bill to the President's desk to be signed into law.

3. Any measure that is signed into law that does not include a public option that will signal a reduction of the runaway profits the insurers now enjoy, will be a capitulation to the insurance industry and other special interests that stand to gain from maintaining the status quo.

4. At this moment the Republicans have nothing to fear by resisting efforts at bi-partisanship and feel that they have nothing to gain from cooperating with the President.

5. It reqiures an entirely different set of skills to govern....The skills needed to get elected are quite different and not easily transferred....

6. Playing in the big leagues you have to learn and be willing to take bases with your spikes up. The people around him have to step up and give him the kind of advice he needs or his administration will be in the toilet before his first year is up.......

7. President Obama needs to be reminded the if LBJ and Dr. King had compromised and capitulated when the Dixiecratats and conservative Republicans were determined to derail Civil Rights and Voting Rights legislation he would not be in office today....

8. It's time to step up and stand up, have some guts and show some backbone. Many of the people who are being frightened into resisting change wouldn't be frightened if the President showed that he was indeed ready, willing, and able to fight with everything he has at his disposal to ensure that the health care system and health care insurance were reformed or changed for the benefit and good of the entire nation.

Friday, August 14, 2009

6th Grade Reporter Scores Interview With President Obama

Damon Weaver has chosen a great way to begin building his resume.

KEC-TV is located in K.E. Cunningham/Canal Point Elementary School
Palm Beach, Florida

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Exploiting Of The Defense Of White Womanhood

by Ron Powell

It has been a staple of the Ameican political/social psyche that when a white woman is caused harm or distress of any kind as the result of an encounter with a black man, white men are obliged and entitled to seek and secure swift and certain justice for the purposes of protecting and defending the honor, dignty, and sanctity of the offended accusing white woman in particular, and white womanhood in general.

Nothing arouses the white American male visceral or emotional reflex to anger and violence more than a hysterical white woman pointing an accusatory finger at a black man. This has been the stuff of mob rule through murders, lynchings, and capital punishment in this country from day one. It is as true today as it ever has been...And now the target of that visceral anger and violence happens to be a black man who is President of the United States of America......

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

"I want my country back! I'm scared!"

Emotions and tempers run high at Senator Arlan Specter's Town Hall Meeting this morning in Lebanon, Pennsylvania.
"I want my country back!"
A running theme in the protests against health care reform......Is this about health care/health insurance reform or something else entirely?
Does having a black man in the White house mean that THEIR contry has been taken away from them?

Here's a video from a townhall meeting held by Arkansas Democratic Reps. Vic Snyder and Mike Ross, where their townhall is hijacked by right-wingers.

....and in Hillsborough, Missouri:

As this is being posted, there are people carrying guns in relatively close proximity to the location in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, where President Obama is to hold a Town Hall on reform of the health care system......

....Obama won the election, but there are those who seem to be resolved to not permitting him to be President....

Republican Misinformation E-mail On Proposed Health Care Reform Bill

We are in the throes of a heated, acrimonious, sometimes even violent national debate about health care reform.....It is incumbent upon each of us to seek information about just what exactly is going on here and why...

What follows is the text of an anonymous Republican e-mail....
If the author of this email had actually read the bill, he or she would know better. But that is not the forte or intention of those who seek to misinform, disinform and disrupt the debates and the legislative process.....

Here are the facts. Anyone can verify them by reading the bill at

Subject: Obama Health Care Plan Details
Everyone knows abortion and euthanasia counseling are included in the

health care bill. But there is more that should be a source of concern.

The following is a brief outline of this bill put together by Mat Staver of the Freedom Foundation and Liberty Counsel (contact info is at the end). The comments by the brief are by Staver.

Obama Health Care Plan Details

HR 3200 currently under consideration in the House of Representatives

Pg 22 of the HC Bill MANDATES the Govt will audit the books of ALL EMPLOYERS that self insure!!

Pg 30 Sec 123 of HC bill - THERE WILL BE A GOVT COMMITTEE that decides what treatments/benefits you get

Pg 29 lines 4-16 in the HC bill - YOUR HEALTHCARE IS RATIONED!!!

Pg 42 of HC Bill - The Health Choices Commissioner will choose your benefits for you. You have no choice!

Pg 50 Section 152 in HC bill - HC will be provided to ALL non US citizens, illegal or otherwise

Pg 58HC Bill - Gov't will have real-time access to individual's finances & a National ID Health care card will be issued!

Pg 59 HC Bill lines 21-24 Govt will have direct access to your banks accts for electronic funds transfer.

Pg 65 Sec 164 is a payoff subsidized plan for retirees and their families in Unions & community orgs (ACORN).

Pg 72 Lines 8-14 Govt is creating an HC Exchange to bring priv HC plans under Govt control.

Pg 84 Sec 203 HC bill - Govt mandates ALL benefit packages for private Health Care plans in the Exchange

Pg 85 Line 7 HC Bill - Specs for of Benefit Levels for Plans = The Govt will ration your Healthcare!

Pg 91 Lines 4-7 HC Bill - Govt mandates linguistic appropriate services.

Example - Translation for illegal aliens.

Pg 95 HC Bill Lines 8-18 The Govt will use groups i.e., ACORN & Americorps to sign up individuals for Govt HC plan

Pg 85 Line 7 HC Bill - Specs of Ben Levels 4 Plans. #AARP members - Your Health Care WILL be rationed

Pg 102 Lines 12-18 HC Bill - Medicaid Eligible Individual will be automat.enrolled in Medicaid. No choice.

Pg 124 lines 24-25 HC No company can sue Govt on price fixing. No "judicial review" against Govt Monopoly.

Pg 127 Lines 1-16 HC Bill - Doctors/ #AMA - The Govt will tell YOU what you can make.

Pg 145 Line 15-17 An Employer MUST auto enroll employees into public opt plan. NO CHOICE

Pg 126 Lines 22-25 Employers MUST pay for HC for part time employees AND their families.

Pg 149 Lines 16-24 ANY Employer w/ payroll 400k & above who does not prov. pub opt. pays 8% tax on all payroll

Pg 150 Lines 9-13 Biz w payroll btw 251k & 400k who doesnt provide public opt pays 2-6% tax on all payroll Pg 167 Lines 18-23 ANY individual who doesnt have acceptable HC according to Govt will be taxed 2.5% of income.

Pg 170 Lines 1-3 Any NONRESIDENT Alien is exempt from individual taxes. (Americans will pay).

Pg 195 Officers & employees of HC Admin (GOVT) will have access to ALL Americans financial and personal records.

Pg 203 Line 14-15 HC - "The tax imposed under this section shall not be treated as tax" Yes, it says that. Pg 239 Line 14-24 HC Bill Govt will reduce physician services for Medicaid. Seniors, low income, poor affected.

Pg 241 Line 6-8 HC Bill - Doctors, it does not matter what specialty you have, you'll all be paid the same.

Pg 253 Line 10-18 Govt sets value of Dr's time, prof judg, etc. Literally value of humans.

Pg 265 Sec 1131Govt mandates & controls productivity for private HC industries.

Pg 268 Sec 1141 Fed Govt regulates rental & purchase of power driven wheelchairs.

Pg 272 SEC. 1145. Treatment of certain cancer hospitals - Cancer patients - welcome to rationing!

Page 280 Sec 1151 The Govt will penalize hospitals for what Govt deems preventable readmissions. (Incentives for hospital to not treat and release.)

Pg 298 Lines 9-11 Drs, treat a patient during initial admission that results in a readmission-Govt will penalize you.

Pg 317 L 13-20 PROHIBITION on ownership/investment. Govt tells Drs. what/how much they can own.

Pg 317-318 lines 21-25,1-3 PROHIBITION on expansion- Govt is mandating hospitals cannot expand.

pg 321 2-13 Hospitals have opportunity to apply for exception BUT community input required. Can you say ACORN?!!

Pg335 L 16-25 Pg 336-339 - Govt mandates established of outcome based measures. HC the way they want. Rationing.

Pg 341 Lines 3-9 Govt has authority to disqualify Medicare Advantage Plans (Part B), HMOs, etc. Forcing people into Govt plan.

Pg 354 Sec 1177 - Govt will RESTRICT enrollment of Special needs people!

Pg 379 Sec 1191 Govt creates more bureaucracy - Telehealth Advisory Committee. HC by phone/Internet?

Pg 425 Lines 4-12 Govt mandates Advance [Death] Care Planning Consult. Think Senior Citizens end of life.

Pg 425 Lines 17-19 Govt will instruct & consult regarding living wills, durable powers of atty. Mandatory!

Pg 425 Lines 22-25, 426 Lines 1-3 Gov't provides approved list of end of life resources, guiding you in death.

Pg 427 Lines 15-24 Govt mandates program for orders for end of life. The Gov't has a say in how your life ends.

Pg 429 Lines 1-9 An "adv. care planning consult" will be used frequently as patients health deteriorates.

Pg 429 Lines 10-12 "adv. care consultation" may incl an ORDER for end of life plans. AN ORDER from GOV

Pg 429 Lines 13-25 - The govt will specify which Doctors can write an end of life order.

PG 430 Lines 11-15 The Govt will decide what level of treatment you will have at end of life

(NOTE FROM RJ: The above really does give the government the authority to determine who lives and dies, and when. A government bureaucrat really will be making this decision for you and your loved ones.)

Pg 469 - Community Based Home Medical Services=Non profit orgs. Hello, ACORN Medical Svcs here!!?

Pg 472 Lines 14-17 PAYMENT TO COMMUNITY-BASED ORG. 1 monthly payment to a community-based org. Like ACORN?

Pg 489 Sec 1308 The Govt will cover Marriage & Family therapy. They will insert Government into your marriage. Pg 494-498 Govt will cover Mental Health Svcs including defining, creating, rationing those svcs

PG 502 Sec 1181 Center for Comparative Effectiveness Research Established. - Hello Big Brother - Literally.

Pg 503 Lines 13-19 Gov't will build registries and data networks from YOUR electronic med records.

Pg 503 lines 21-25 Gov't may secure data directly from any depart or agency of the US including your data.

Pg 504 Lines 6-10 The "Center" will collect data both published & unpublished (that means public & your private info)

PG 506 Lines 19-21 The Center will recommend policies that would allow for public access of data.

PG 518 Lines 21-25 The Commission will have input from HC consumer reps - Can you say unions & ACORN?

PG 524 18-22 Comparative Effectiveness Research Trust Fund set up. More taxes for ALL.

PG 621 Lines 20-25 Gov't will define what Quality means in HC. Since when does Gov't know about quality?

Pg 622 Lines 2-9 To pay for the Quality Standards, Govt will transfer $$ from to other Govt Trust Funds. More Taxes.

PG 624 "Quality" measures shall be designed to assess outcomes & functional status of patients.

PG 624 "Quality" measures shall be designed to profile you including race, age, gender, place of residence, etc

Pg 628 Sec 1443 Gov't will give "Multi-Stake Holders" Pre-Rule Making input into Selection of "Quality" Measures.

Pg 630 9-24/631 1-9 Those Multi-stake holder groups incl. Unions & groups like ACORN deciding HC quality.

Pg 632 Lines 14-25 The Gov't may implement any "Quality measure" of HC Services as they see fit.

PG 633 14-25/ 634 1-9 The Secretary may issue non-endorsed "Quality Measures" for Physician Services & Dialysis Services.

Pg 635 to 653 Physicians Payments Sunshine Provision - Gov't wants to shine sunlight on Docs but not Govt.

Pg 654-659 Public Reporting on Health Care-Associated Infections - Looks okay.

PG 660-671 Doctors in Residency - Gov't will tell you where your residency will be, thus where you'll live.

Pg 676-686 Gov't will regulate hospitals in EVERY aspect of residency programs, incl. teaching hospitals.

Pg 686-700 Increased Funding to Fight Waste, Fraud, and Abuse. You mean like the Gov't with an $18 million website?

PGs 701-704 Sec 1619 If your part of HC plan isn't in Gov't HC Exchange but you qualify for Fed aid, no payment.

PG 705-709 SEC. 1128 If Secr gets complaints (ACORN) on HC provider or supplier, Gov't can do background check.

PG 711 Lines 8-14 The Secretary has broad powers to deny HC providers/ suppliers admittance into HC Exchange. Your doctor could be thrown out of business.

Pg 719-720 Sec 1637 ANY Doctor who orders durable med equip or home med services MUST be enrolled in Medicare.

PG 722 Sec 1639 Gov't MANDATES Doctors must have face to face with patient to certify patient for Home Health Svcs.

PG 724 23-25 PG 725 1-5 The same Gov't certifications will apply to Medicaid & CHIP (your kids)

PG 724 Lines 16-22 Gov't reserves rt to apply face to face certification for patient to ANY other HC service.

Pg 735 lines 16-25 For law enforce. proposes the Secretary-HHS will give Atty General access to ALL data.

PG 740-757 Gov't sets guidelines for subsidizing the uninsured (Thats your tax dollars people)

Pg 757-762 Fed gov't will shift burden of payments to Disproportionate Share Hospitals (DSH) to States. (Taxes)

Pg 763 1-8 No DS/EA hospitals will be paid unless they provide services without regard to national origin

Pg 765 Sec 1711 Gov't will require Preventative Services including vaccines. (Choice?)

Pg 768 Sec 1713 Gov't - Nurse Home Visitation Svcs (Hello union paybacks)

Pg 769 11-14 Nurse Home Visit Svcs include-economic self-sufficiency, employ adv, school-readiness.

Pg 769 3-5 Nurse Home Visit Services - "increasing birth intervals between pregnancies." Govt ABORTIONS anyone

Pg 770 SEC 1714 Fed Gov't mandates eligibility for State Family Planning Services. Abortion & State Sovereign.

Pg 789-797 Gov't will set, mandate drug prices, controlling which drugs brought to market. Bye innovation.

Pgs 797-800 SEC. 1744 PAYMENTS for graduate medical education. The government will now control Drs' education.

PG 801 Sec 1751 The Govt will decide which Health care conditions will be paid. Say RATION!

Pg 810 SEC. 1759. Billing Agents, clearinghouses, etc req. to register. Gov't takes over private payment sys.

Pg 820-824 Sec 1801 Govt will identify individ. ineligible for subsidies. Will access all personal financial information.

Pg 824-829 SEC. 1802. Govt Sets up Comparative Effectiveness Research= Trust Fund. Another tax black hole.

PG 829-833 Gov't will impose a fee on ALL private health ins. plans incl. self insured to pay for Trust Fund!

PG 835 11-13 fees imposed by Gov't for Trust Fund shall be treated as if they were taxes.

Pg 838-840 Gov't will design & implement Home Visitation Program for families with young kids & families expect kids.

PG 844-845 This Home Visitation Prog. includes Gov't coming into your house & telling you how to parent!!!

Pg 859 Gov't will establish a Public Health Fund at a cost of $88,800,000,000. Yes that's Billion.

Pg 865 The Gov't will MANDATE the establishment of a National Health Service Corps.

PG 865 to 876 The NHS Corps is a program where Drs. perform mandatory HC for 2yrs for part loan repayment.

PG 876-892 The govt takes over the education of our Med students and Drs.

PG 898 The Govt will establish a Public Health Workforce Corps to ensure supply of public health prof.

PG 898 The Public health workforce corps shall consist of civilian employees of the U.S. as Secretary deems.

PG 898 The Public health workforce corps shall consist of officers of Regular & Reserve Corps of Service.

PG 900 The Public Health Workforce Corps includes veterinarians.

PG 901 The Public Health Workforce Corps WILL include commissioned Regular & Reserve Officers. HC Draft?

PG 910 The Govt will develop, build & run Public Health Training Centers.

PG 913-914 Govt starts a HC affirmative action program thru guise of diversity scholarships.

PG 915 SEC. 2251. Govt MANDDATES Cultural & linguistic competency training for HC professionals.

Pg 932 The Govt will estab Preventative & Wellness Trust fund- initial cost of $30,800,000,000-Billion.

PG 935 21-22 Govt will identify specific goals & objectives for prevention & wellness activities. Control YOU!!

PG 936 Govt will develop "Healthy People & National Public Health Perform. Standards" Tell me what to eat?

PG 942 Lines 22-25 More Gov't? Offices of Surgeon General -Public Health Svc, Minority Health, Women's Health

PG 950- 980 BIG GOV'T core pub health infrastructure including workforce capacity, lab systems; health info sys, etc

PG 993 Gov't will establish school based health clinics. Your kids won't have a chance.

PG 994 School Based Health Clinic will be integrated into the school environment. Say GOVT Brainwash!

PG 1001 The Govt will establish a National Medical Device Registry. Will you be tracked?

Again, if the anonymous writer of this email had actually read the bill, he or she would know better.

Here are the facts. Anyone can verify them by reading the bill at:

Sunday, August 9, 2009

How the White House's Deal With Big Pharma Undermines Democracy

Gueast Post By Robert Reich - TPM

I'm a strong supporter of universal health insurance, and a fan of the Obama administration. But I'm appalled by the deal the White House has made with the pharmaceutical industry's lobbying arm to buy their support.

Last week, after being reported in the Los Angeles Times, the White House confirmed it has promised Big Pharma that any healthcare legislation will bar the government from using its huge purchasing power to negotiate lower drug prices. That's basically the same deal George W. Bush struck in getting the Medicare drug benefit, and it's proven a bonanza for the drug industry. A continuation will be an even larger bonanza, given all the Boomers who will be enrolling in Medicare over the next decade. And it will be a gold mine if the deal extends to Medicaid, which will be expanded under most versions of the healthcare bills now emerging from Congress, and to any public option that might be included. (We don't know how far the deal extends beyond Medicare because its details haven't been made public.)

Let me remind you: Any bonanza for the drug industry means higher health-care costs for the rest of us, which is one reason why critics of the emerging healthcare plans, including the Congressional Budget Office, are so worried about their failure to adequately stem future healthcare costs. To be sure, as part of its deal with the White House, Big Pharma apparently has promised to cut future drug costs by $80 billion. But neither the industry nor the White House nor any congressional committee has announced exactly where the $80 billion in savings will show up nor how this portion of the deal will be enforced. In any event, you can bet that the bonanza Big Pharma will reap far exceeds $80 billion. Otherwise, why would it have agreed?

In return, Big Pharma isn't just supporting universal health care. It's also spending a lots of money on TV and radio advertising in support. Sunday's New York Times reports that Big Pharma has budgeted $150 million for TV ads promoting universal health insurance, starting this August (that's more money than John McCain spent on TV advertising in last year's presidential campaign), after having already spent a bundle through advocacy groups like Healthy Economies Now and Families USA.

I want universal health insurance. And having had a front-row seat in 1994 when Big Pharma and the rest of the health-industry complex went to battle against it, I can tell you first hand how big and effective the onslaught can be. So I appreciate Big Pharma's support this time around, and I like it that the industry is doing the reverse of what it did last time, and airing ads to persuade the public of the rightness of the White House's effort.

But I also care about democracy, and the deal between Big Pharma and the White House frankly worries me. It's bad enough when industry lobbyists extract concessions from members of Congress, which happens all the time. But when an industry gets secret concessions out of the White House in return for a promise to lend the industry's support to a key piece of legislation, we're in big trouble. That's called extortion: An industry is using its capacity to threaten or prevent legislation as a means of altering that legislation for its own benefit. And it's doing so at the highest reaches of our government, in the office of the President.

When the industry support comes with an industry-sponsored ad campaign in favor of that legislation, the threat to democracy is even greater. Citizens end up paying for advertisements designed to persuade them that the legislation is in their interest. In this case, those payments come in the form of drug prices that will be higher than otherwise, stretching years into the future.

I don't want to be puritanical about all this. Politics is a rough game in which means and ends often get mixed and melded. Perhaps the White House deal with Big Pharma is a necessary step to get anything resembling universal health insurance. But if that's the case, our democracy is in terrible shape. How soon until big industries and their Washington lobbyists have become so politically powerful that secret White House-industry deals like this are prerequisites to any important legislation? When will it become standard practice that such deals come with hundreds of millions of dollars of industry-sponsored TV advertising designed to persuade the public that the legislation is in the public's interest? (Any Democrats and progressives who might be reading this should ask themselves how they'll feel when a Republican White House cuts such deals to advance its own legislative priorities.)

We're on a precarious road -- and wherever it leads, it's not toward democracy.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Talking Points: Who Or What Is A Racist?

by Ron Powell

The following is a series of definitions and descriptions which I have developed to push the discussion/debate/discourse on the question of racism a bit further:

1) A racist is a person who believes that a particular racial or ethnic group is inherently SUPERIOR and that other racial or ethnic groups are inherently INFERIOR and therefor is entitled to enjoy rights and privileges reserved only for the superior group which includes the exploitation, subjugation, and subordination of the inferior groups for the benefit of the superior group.

2) A racists is a person who seeks to propogate, promulgate, perpetuate, preserve, protect or defend a system, structure, organization, bureaucracy, society, culture or government which rests on the proposition that one racial or ethnic group is inherently superior and others are inherently inferior.

3) A racist is a person who has determined that he or she is entitled to or in fact does benefit directly or indirectly from the exclusionary rights and privileges conferred on him/her as a consequence of the notion that one group is inherently superior and that others are inherently inferior.

4) A racist is a person who believes that; irrespective of evidence or manifestation of merit, achievement, accomplishment, edict, sanction, pronouncement, documentation, stautory enactment, executive order, administrative rule & regulation or judicial decision, no person identified as being a member of the INFERIOR group can in any way be deemed to have changed or altered status so as to become a member of the SUPERIOR group.

5) A racist is a person who believs that the concept of racial equality is neither valid nor viable and thus resists any effort at achieving racial equality or efforts at maintaining racial equality as an appropriate societal or cultural goal or aim.

We can disagree without becoming disagreeable or we can agree to disagree. Either way, we can, and must, remain respectful and civil toward one another or the discussion goes nowhere.

Thursday, August 6, 2009