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August 21, 2009


Chimpy Nuts

TM slays the death star once again

if you think the death panels caused a lot of tea party outrage, get a load of this.

Health Reform Legislation and Immigration

In brief:

Despite nominally barring illegal immigrants from receiving a health-insurance subsidy, an amendment to require that applicants be screened for eligibility — as are all other welfare recipients — was rejected on a party-line vote.

Even legal immigrants whose sponsors are supposed to provide them financial support would be eligible for taxpayer-funded subsidies.

Certain legal immigrants who qualify for premium subsidies or expanded Medicaid would also be able to sponsor new immigrants, whom they would have to pledge to support.

Illegal immigrants would be exempt from the legal mandate to have health insurance, but they’d still receive taxpayer-funded medical services at health clinics and hospitals required to serve all those presenting with medical emergencies.


Maybe the threat of the paper's going under and the reporters having to go into this plan made them open their eyes a bit.
Or maybe not.


And from the editorial page (and surprised that Tom hasn't posted it up, but then again, there is only so much time during the day):

If you lose Krugman, it must really be bad file:

According to news reports, the Obama administration — which seemed, over the weekend, to be backing away from the “public option” for health insurance — is shocked and surprised at the furious reaction from progressives.

Well, I’m shocked and surprised at their shock and surprise.

That's a gem. The Obama Administration, going back to its community organizing roots, needed to gin up some anger and excitment in his loony base. He needs to polarize the issue, scare the current tea parties so they leave the streets and townhalls when they are outnumbered by SEIU and ACORN, and then use threats and fear to bully a bill through the House and Senate.

One purpose of the public option is to save money. Experience with Medicare suggests that a government-run plan would have lower costs than private insurers; in addition, it would introduce more competition and keep premiums down.

Sort of like Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac kept borrowing costs down or public education produces better outcomes when we shovel more money into it. It is also false that Medicare has lower administrative costs and as a percent of total healthcare spending, administrative costs aren't that big of an issue. It also seems silly that someone would claim that government would reduce administrative costs because of bureaucratic efficiency. How is a government run corporation going to introduce "competition" (ie since health insurance can't be bought across state lines, the government would be the only one offering such a product-that's at least a product monopoly) and since the government can lard up another layer of regulations and fees how can private companies keep their costs down? Or the government can run their plan at a loss.

And let’s be clear: the supposed alternative, nonprofit co-ops, is a sham. That’s not just my opinion; it’s what the market says: stocks of health insurance companies soared on news that the Gang of Six senators trying to negotiate a bipartisan approach to health reform were dropping the public plan.

Stop giving the game away Krugman. We know that the Obama Administration is of, by, and for Wall Street. Next thing you'll them me is that someone could build an investment strategy knowing that the DC political class wants to destroy the shareholder equity of health insurance stocks.

On the issue of health care itself, the inspiring figure progressives thought they had elected comes across, far too often, as a dry technocrat who talks of “bending the curve” but has only recently begun to make the moral case for reform.

Moral Politics is a dry read, uninspiring, and I'm really at a loss as to how it could be the basis of the current Dem majorities. Think of a jackass and lie about your agenda.

But there’s a point at which realism shades over into weakness, and progressives increasingly feel that the administration is on the wrong side of that line. It seems as if there is nothing Republicans can do that will draw an administration rebuke: Senator Charles E. Grassley feeds the death panel smear, warning that reform will “pull the plug on grandma,” and two days later the White House declares that it’s still committed to working with him.

Ha. The Democrats have 60 votes in the Senate and 278 in the House. They can pass as much healthcare reform up to and including a complete takeover of the healthcare system by HHS as they like. They need no Republican support whatsoever. It took a private citizen commenting on a facebook page (she couldn't even be bothered to grace the pages of the Gray Lady [when is her plug going to get pulled?]) to sharpen the debate of what Obamacare will do. But even without her comment, even before her comment, people were showing up to townhalls angry at what their representitives were doing. Why is it that the White House and the Political Class is still responding to what a private citizen wrote on an internet page and ignoring the concerns of the constituencies?

David Brooks is off today.

I hardly noticed.


This 'federal panel of medical experts' will not give 'advice' to doctors and hospitals.

It will give ORDERS. Life and death orders.

Nothing about this thousand-page attack on our liberty and individual rights is 'voluntary'.

If any provision of this obscenity is 'voluntary', you can bet the conditions make it very difficult if not impossible to opt out.

If Obama gets final approval over our healthcare, over life and death for us, our grandparents, our children or our spouses, under conditions that change without reason, appeal or notice, then there is no more freedom.

There will be no more liberty. We will be slaves to the government.

Does anyone really believe that Obama, after he and the Democrats have already called Americans 'evil', terrorists', 'a mob', 'racist' and 'un-American' for daring to oppose him, will administer state-run healthcare fairly and without bias or agenda?

No one will dare to protest a future Fairness Doctrine, a future 'civilian national security force', or increasing restrictions on gun ownership knowing that Obama is capable,, as we have already seen, of retaliating against dissent by any means necessary, up to and including denial of lifesaving medical care.

the bishop

Yet another example, of Abu Bakr Cerif, ABC doing the work AQ's too busy to do on their


W originally killed the "End of Life" counseling pamphlet/questionnaire created for the VA which apparently has just been rolled out by the Obama Administration for use against the borderline VA patient population of veterans.

What remains too often unstated is not the impact of the questions, but the damage done by the process itself which requires the target to submit obediently to the process of confessing their deepest fears and darkest self-effacing doubts to a dominating third-party who sits in judgement; a third party whose purpose and implicit goal is to accelerate the death of the human target of such questionnaires.

Admittedly, my familiarity with the invaluable work of Victor Frankl predisposes me to a deep bias against the european eugenics traditions which have infiltrated and corrupted our medical schools under this Orwellian ruse they call "Bioethics." Rudy Rummel's work on Democide speaks volumes to the morbid productiveness of such political largesse. These "enlightened" medical and political professionals pushing Obamacare are more of the same old crowd, all they way down to the true believer psychosis that's whispers in their ear how they indeed are doing the right thing.


I accidentally posted the following on the Tom Ridge thread and meant to post it here:

O/T: Shades of Harry Potter . . .

"The first-ever video advertisement will be published in a traditional paper magazine in September.

The video-in-print ads will appear in select copies of the US show business title Entertainment Weekly.

The slim-line screens - around the size of a mobile phone display - also have rechargeable batteries.

The chip technology used to store the video - described as similar to that used in singing greeting cards - is activated when the page is turned.

Each chip can hold up to 40 minutes of video."

Original MikeS

Whoa dude! Schizophrenia at the NYT. For more than a decade, the Times has rigidly adhered to a policy of completely ignoring inconvenient facts.

Now there may be a faction within the Times that wants to consider the facts even when they conflict with the approved editorial narrative.

Charlie (Colorado)

"Each chip can hold up to 40 minutes of video."


Charlie (Colorado)

I suspect they mean "40 seconds" however.


Great comment at 5:08, Rich.

And willem, you too. I heard Rush read that VA questionnaire today, and you are right on.

What remains too often unstated is not the impact of the questions, but the damage done by the process itself which requires the target to submit obediently to the process of confessing their deepest fears and darkest self-effacing doubts to a dominating third-party who sits in judgement; a third party whose purpose and implicit goal is to accelerate the death of the human target of such questionnaires.
I hadn't ever heard of this thing befure, but it was truly disgusting.

"Would your life still be worth living if your family was inconvenienced?"

"Would your life still be worth living if you couldn't control your bowels?"

"Would your life still be worth living if you couldn't remember things."



Steele deserves credit today.

Steele to Obama: Quit blaming us and pass the bill, champ — if you dare

Jane will cause you pain

The bill is officially toast IMO given the additional $2 Trillion deficit projection.

Of course the presidebt is probably not smart enough to realize that.


pass the bill

A buck is a bill.

Elizabeth R.

Possibly the administration purposely "added" and publicized the extra 2 trillion deficit number right now to help publicly justify a slow walkback of healthcare reform ambitions? Smart people in my neck o' the woods predict that a vastly more modest and simpler plan will be passed. It'll still give Obama a headline--- but avoid total political suicide next year. The loss of the independent voter support in recent polls is a BIG deal with huge electoral ramifications to Dems. The far left will be apoplectic, but, as we say in Chicago, "politics ain't beanbag".


Elizabeth R.-

Possibly the administration purposely "added" and publicized the extra 2 trillion deficit number right now to help publicly justify a slow walkback of healthcare reform ambitions?

Or maybe they are letting reality intrude. The Obama Administration economics brain trust called for 4+ growth next year, an aggressive forecast not based on anything resembling reality. A better weather balloon was Warren Buffet's editorial which indicates that the Obama Administration is going to have to put together a tax hike package: on Social Security (raising the cap to $250k and increasing it a percent or two), Medicare (raising it a point or two), and income (probably in the 3%-5% range) and hope that it patches up the budget and pays for the stimulus and financial bailouts. He had the opportunity to claim a "healthcare reform" victory of sorts with the COBRA extensions and subsidies and the S-CHIP expansion. Those bits were too small potatoes for hope and change, but if he had better political advisement, he'd have had the "Mission Accomplished" banner draped behind him at the signing ceremony and wouldn't have kicked up a hornets nest and had "I don't want to unplug Grandma" as his opening line of his elevator pitch.

Elizabeth R.

Rich, there's no doubt the additional 2 trillion is real and is probably not nearly enough to honestly reflect deficit reality. Still, the TIMING of the announcement is curious and my antennae are telling me that it may have some political meaning-- since it obviously doesn't change (or help) any of the other problems you lay out above.

Melinda Romanoff


As a fellow Chicagoan, I agree. The tactic to be taken now will be a bit like slowly introducing the funnel to those famous French geese. Slow at first, and then you're stuffed to the gills with "progress".

Sort of like the snake approach to eating the alligator, one inch at a time. Pass what they can, then keep pressing for "justice's" sake.

Melinda Romanoff

And will enable them to apply the "fierce moral urgency" of fixing the budget deficit through healthcare reform, because it's far worse than we ever could have imagined!

(where's that sarcasm button...)



I'm skeptical that the Obama Administration would "walk back" healthcare ambitions given the interest groups he has to placte in the House. The political damage is far too extensive at this point. He'll either rapidly give up or dig in even harder (and it appears with the various conference calls, making "the moral case", etc his administration wants to dig in).

If there is unplesantness to attend to, do it all at once and do it quickly. If he were smart he'd dump healthcare and cap-and-trade and come up with a more modest 2010 budget with those items removed, which would improve greatly the budget numbers. Surrender. He can claim that he heard the voters and is moving on to the rest of his agenda (which is to campaign for 2012).

Melinda Romanoff


Here's "Tyler's" spin on it. (LUN)

Elizabeth R.

You make good points, Rich. I guess I just don't think that at this point in the clusterf*ck he created he has the political option either to walk completely away from healthcare OR to double down to pass full gov't takeover of healthcare. The administration is flailing around. Lots of Dem Reps and Senators are worried silly about re-election after seeing recent polls and hearing from their constituents. He knows he can't please everybody and he needs to save face. With almost every editorial page in the country telling him to slow down and scale back he'd have at least some cover if he did it, yet would still be able to hang his "mission accomplished" banner. (I loved your earlier reference to that!) Guess we'll all just have to wait and see.

the bishop

No, he has to charge right into the path of the iceberg, tearing through the fateful fifth and six compartments; as you saw that will not improve the fate of the SS. Single Payer

Frau Krankenkasse

Rich UF - as Mark Steyn pointed out, Grandma will never be plugged *in* under ObamaCarp. That makes keeping his word so easy.

(Melinda, I looked it up. J. Hayden wrote the music which was used, first, as the imperial Austrian anthem and then for the German anthem.)

Melinda Romanoff


I had to double check myself as well.


I disagree. This one's coming as a Stroger special, all votes, no discussion. And could you pick Auntie Phlem for a couple of months...

You've seen this game before, no changes necessary, except an address.

Melinda Romanoff

I do prefer the "Water Music", truth be told.

Elizabeth R.

Melinda, totally understand the Toddler bit, but I have to show my ignorance here--about the Auntie Phlem comment? Is it a joke, a slam, somehing in popular culture I don't "get"? It's late, the Sox just lost, but what am I missing?

JM Hanes


"Have the Times editors forgotten their headline from August 13?"

The Times editorial board quit reading their own newspaper even before I did.


"I hardly noticed."

How wonderfully droll coming after that pointed exegesis. I burst out laughing!


The new Obamacare Cash for Codgers program will give you $4500 if you turn Grandma over for hospice care instead of a hip surgery.

Less costly and more death-efficient, pain pills and hand-holding promise to reduce Medicare costs by one-third compared to expensive and wasteful spending on bypasses, cancer treatments, and oxygen for frail elders.

Family members who successfully sign up their aged relative for Blue Pill Hospice will receive $4500. There is no limit on the number of elderly that can be turned in for the program, and you need not be a relative to participate.


On what planet does the NYT publish? Oh, that would be the one from Barney Frank was elected.

Peg C.

Skip, LOL.

The NYT's concerns may not be entirely irrational, either, but I doubt it.


What's truly amazing in Obambi's Shamwow "hey, act now because we can't keep this up all night" pitch is that he keeps talking about "My Plan," but doesn't actually have one.

This is the guy who said there'd be "transparency" and time to read bills, but who has never personally authored a bill.

We have the 1,000-page HR3200 as a plan. The multiple Senate plans are unpublished. And we have this imaginary Obama plan.

When President Clunker is challenged on what is in Pelosi's HR3200, this loser keeps telling us what is or isn't in his imaginary plan, which changes with each challenge.

Talk about a pig in a poke.



The NYT's is written for schizophrenics.

bad s##t

Tops, the NYT is printed but I'm not so sure any writing is involved.

Joe Schmo

It's all about the narrative.


One of the stakeholders represented in the "end-of-life" panel are hospice groups.

Is there any organization more death-oriented than them?

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