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Open Thread - 4/6/2014

US Politics & Gov't  (tags: Open Thread, video )

- 1510 days ago -
Personal news, a Jig Zone puzzle, 3 short takes, and a homemade cartoon (shown).

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P A (117)
Sunday April 6, 2014, 5:35 am
Well done for completing the course TC, I can't imagine they had anything new to teach you – but at least they now know that you know – if you see what I mean!

As someone from over the Pond – is the NY Times piece genuine – are undocumented people really allowed to serve in the military? Really?? If someone is willing to fight and die for a country, I'd have thought the least the country could do is to call them a citizen!

Sorry – couldn't face the Idiot son of Idiot clip – too ill!

Lona G (80)
Sunday April 6, 2014, 6:25 am
Good to hear things went well, TomCat. The course will give you a more possibilities and a more relaxed frame of working and if the trip and stay don't take it out of you as they did before, then your health won't be compromised either. Sound like things are really starting to look very positive after you were able to move away from those terrible and harmful surroundings.

The New Yorker: Andy hit the nail on the head again, of course the GOP is anti math. A. because they can't do it even if their lives depended on it; you tend to get that after a lifetime of distorting any figure they could lay their hands on. B. because anyone who can do the math will see that the ACA is a success. C. Anyone who has done the math may now also apply it to other areas and see how the GOP is the one behind voter fraud, not the people without IDs and D. will see that the GOP is in fact a minority and should act accordingly.

NY Times: Do understand this correctly: illegal immigrants are not good enough to live in America, but they are good enough to defend the US and get maimed and killed abroad? Let's talk about double standards. I hope this leads to a lot of disagreement within the GOP and it all spills out into the open.

Crook and Liars: Even though I took precautions with an industrial size and strength barf bag, I had to stop half way through because of exhaustion. Even I, as an outsider, know it was all speculation and lies that came out of his mouth up to that point, so I can confidently say that I ave not missed anything by turning it of.
I wanted to say that is time that the left will start a "the ACA is a success" campaign before the GOP will do anything in it's power to make the speculations come true at the expense of people, but then I saw another item on Crooks an Liars which told that Obama was denied 10 minutes of air time by the networks to talk about the enrolment figures. So much for my idea it seems the GOP has already started their cover-up campaign and are trying to hurt as many people just to make sure their speculations have some base.

Cartoon: Uhh, was that the first and last time they had regular sessions?

Pat B (356)
Sunday April 6, 2014, 7:13 am
New Yorker: So Funny. The Repugs like to leave a lot of things out, to suit themselves, and constantly complain about a successful program. Andy gets better and better, doesn't he?
New York Times: Mr. Denham has stated it very well regarding our immigrants signing up in the military.
“It is very frustrating to hear controversy from members who have never served their country and don’t understand the impact that immigrants have had on our freedoms.Lots of hate, and racism in those comments from the opposition and within their own rank and file!
Cartoon: Good one, The first U.S. Congress began regular sessions at the Federal Hall in New York City.
I remember reading Shogun, and Tai-Pan many years ago, James Clavell is a good author. Glad that everything went well for you, and that you will be getting your card soon.Do rest up, and relax. Take good care, Tom and thanks. (Good to have you back) ;-)

Arielle S (313)
Sunday April 6, 2014, 7:29 am
We missed you, TomCat, but we're all happy things are going well.
I just love Andy's sense of humor - too bad the GOP don't have a sense of humor at all.
And letting someone fight for our country but denying them any benefits?? Did someone think America should be proud of that?
As for Rand.... bleh - if an intelligent word ever came out of his mouth, his brain would die of shock.

Kit B (276)
Sunday April 6, 2014, 9:34 am

3:00 - That was not an easy one.

Love Andy -

This is an except from the non-partisan Fact

The Senate Republican Policy Committee touted the Kaiser survey results on its website and added: “In other words, Obamacare isn’t lowering premiums – in fact, premium increases have accelerated since Obamacare passed last year.” The Republican National Committee, too, said that “the costs of family coverage increased a ‘whopping’ 9 percent for families” under a headline that claimed “Obama’s Past Promises Are Not Adding Up for American Families.” The House Energy and Commerce Committee, chaired by Republican Rep. Fred Upton of Michigan, said that “Obama care … makes matters worse. The survey released today reveals family premiums have increased by 9 percent.”

But experts we spoke with weren’t too surprised by this year’s findings. They point out that the 3 percent growth from 2009 to 2010 was unusually low. While it’s tough to discern a clear, long-term trend in the growth rates, the annual increase was holding steady at around 5 percent or 5.5 percent from 2007 to 2009. The growth rates had been at 10 percent and higher from 2000 to 2004. (See our chart below, which uses Kaiser’s employer survey numbers.) So, the 3 percent growth rate was “abnormally low,” says John Sheils, senior vice president of The Lewin Group, a subsidiary of UnitedHealth Group that operates independently of the health care company. He says it “would stand to reason that we’d get a boost” this year, possibly due to recovering losses or catching up on the cost of new equipment. A health policy analyst with the National Association of Insurance Commissioners agreed, saying that it was “not surprising to see it rebound like that.”

As long as we have for profit insurance companies between the patient and the provider of medicine; I think there will be some rate hikes.

Medicare/Medicaid operate at 3 to 6% cost basis. For profit insurance even under the new law operate at no less than a 43% cost basis. Therefore, with a slight increase in taxation, less than 5% the US could cover all US citizens, even those with catastrophic diseases. Obama care has many needed benefits, not the least of which are removing all caps on pay out and by eliminating pre-existing conditions. Though to meet the needs of for profit insurance, rate hikes will grow. Not in the exaggerated clairvoyance of the republican premonitions of immediate damage to the American public.

Congratulations TC on completion of your training and getting your new official status. Your good works are, I have no doubt making changes to one life at a time.

David C (131)
Sunday April 6, 2014, 1:05 pm
thanks......and Andy was so believable I believed.....

James Maynard (84)
Sunday April 6, 2014, 3:05 pm
Thanks TC! Playing catchup
and that ferry left me on the

JL A (281)
Sunday April 6, 2014, 3:48 pm
When was legislation passed permitting the House to stop meeting their regular session days, etc.?

The math problem extends to inability to add the Medicaid expansion numbers to the 7.1 million and ability to ignore those through age 26 remaining on parents' policies it seems.

Kudos on the march to officialdom's via the various hoops. Super 8 has policies on what the breakfast has to be--glad it was a better stay for you.

Joanne D (38)
Sunday April 6, 2014, 4:13 pm
Well, welcome home! I can't do the puzzle today due to computer issues, but will try to catch up by tomorrow. Congratulations on completing the training,not that it is any surprise.

New Yorker - I can't add anything to what Lona said - she really covered it.

NY Times - I've known for some time that non-citizens were serving in the military, and that it was a path to citizenship for many, but I thought they needed a green card to get in. I am all for allowing the undocumented to serve. And, if they are willing to do so, they damned well deserve a path to citizenship as a result.

Crooks and Liars - Didn't Fox win some kind of lawsuit that established their right to lie in reporting news? I thought I read that somewhere.

Deb E (63)
Sunday April 6, 2014, 5:20 pm
Someone needs to tell us all where the Republican Party that now exists came from. These people are for everything that used to be what the Southern Dixicrats stood for and then some. It often feels as if the Civil War never ended. Who in their right mind would fight to preserve an insurance company's right to make absurd profits off the sickness of human beings? NO one!! And what happened to the provision that insurance companies HAD to spend 80% of their profits on actual healthcare so that profits weren't going into the pockets of CEOs anymore while people paid ridiculous amounts for insurance premiums? Next they will want fire protection to be private market only, and police protection, as well. Might as well. They want everything to be for profit. Can you imagine? Your house is burning down and because you aren't rich enough to afford insurance for the fire department to come out and put it out, it just burns down. They want it so that only the rich can afford to live in this country. They want all the poor to either work for them, leave the country, or die.. Problem is, we cannot leave this country even if we wanted to. NO other country will take us.

Glad to hear all is going well for you with your certification process, TC

Katie & Bill D (107)
Sunday April 6, 2014, 8:17 pm
When the Repub's talk they say anything to make excuses on the health care!
Thank you TomCat

Sheila D (28)
Sunday April 6, 2014, 9:16 pm
Math was never a strong point with Republicans, unless it worked in their favor, and even then it was suspect. Thanks for the post, TomCat.

P A (117)
Sunday April 6, 2014, 11:55 pm
I quite forgot to say that with the Repubs and Maths - all they need to know is how to grab MORE for them and LESS for the 99%!

TomCat S (129)
Monday April 7, 2014, 12:34 am
Thanks everyone.

Pat, under the Bush Reich, undocumented veterans were deported, and undocumented troops wedre threatened with deportation, unless they reenlisted.

Deb, the Republican party includes the old Dixiecrats, the extreme pseudo-Christians, especially Dominionists, the militias, the gun-nuts, homophobes, misogynists, every olther flavor of hate group, Banksters, and other members of the 1%

Danuta W (1249)
Friday April 11, 2014, 4:05 am
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