Open Thread – 16 January, 2016



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213 Responses to Open Thread – 16 January, 2016

  1. mike says:

    150 plus civilians reportedly killed and 300 plus wounded in latest Saudi airstrikes in Yemen.

  2. Hank L says:

    I got tickets to an Inauguration ball. My 91-year old dad and I had planned to attend the ball and the Inauguration. He is super happy Trump will be President and wanted to attend. He’s a decorated war vet and survived the Battle of Okinawa in the 77th Division (same as Desmond Doss but never met/knew Doss). We were planning to have a nice time together during the Inauguration. Out of concern for my dad’s safety, given the extreme threats I’ve been hearing about, we’ve scrapped our plans and will stay home. I don’t want to expose my dad to a bad situation.
    We are in a cold civil war and one side appears to think it’s acceptable to threaten, attack, and destroy people with whom they disagree. One side is extremely intolerant of the other side’s position and are fully bent in destruction. To the best of recollection I did not remember members of Congress openly saying that they had planned to boycott Obama’s Inauguration. Or any groups threaten violence. Only one prominent member of Hollywood, Nicole Kidman, has had to guts to come out and say that Trump was elected President and we need to support him. Since then there have been many blogs attacking her looks and media outlets (Women’s Day, UK Daily Mail) saying she exhibited bizarre behavior at the Golden Globes and suggesting she might have a drinking problem (because she was lively in the red carpet interviews and requested food from the wait staff at the ceremony.
    This are very scary times in this cold civil war. And the only action the other side has taken is to show up and influence the democratic process on Election Day. And apparently the other side believes that is unacceptable and the candidate they elected is unacceptable.

  3. Joe100 says:

    Information on ISIS splitting the main enclave from the airbase in the Deir Az-Zaur enclave is at Southfront, with more detail at the Cassad blog. Apparently not a good situation with the expectation of more serious ISIS assaults..

  4. Henshaw says:

    AMN has reported that ISIS has advanced to split the government-held area of Deir Ezzor in two, with the airport in one part and the main part of the city in the other. Very worrying news for the 100,000+ besieged civilians and troops there.
    Will the Coalition air forces offer to assist the Russians to drive back ISIS, or are they planning to just sit back and watch as the consequences of their ‘bungled’ raid on Jebel Thardeh in September 2016 are played out?

  5. Haralambos says:

    I can only speculate that this might lead some viewers, as it did me, to recall the Bosch painting:
    Due to current events and the current state of our world, I am led to the third (right) panel. Be well all.

  6. Sam Peralta says:

    It looks like ISIS has split the Deir Ezzor Syrian government area in new attacks and now encircle. Clearly the US attack on the SAA position there have had an impact.
    And Brennan lectures Trump???

  7. Serge says:

    Wondering how the Deir ez-Zor situation will end after the significant developments of past 48 hrs. ISIS seems to be working to expand the buffer zone between airport and rest of city, things moving quickly. Doesn’t bode well for many of the 120K+ still in government areas if things turn sour

  8. walrus says:

    I am starting to believe that all the sturm and drang surrounding Trumps inauguration, the demonstrations, the taking of positions by Democratic feminazis etc. is going to vanish like snow on a sunny sidewalk on the Twentieth.
    I think the manufactured rage by the left is overdone and that the financial powers behind the Borg will decide they can live with Trump and do business as usual.
    As for the Borg operatives, I have this picture of Victoria Nuland in my head, she is surrounded my green steam, and shrieking “I’m melting! I’m melting!” as she dissolves into the pavement.

  9. Origin says:

    In November 2016, I posted a piece on Trump’s right to freedom of speech. One of the thoughts in that piece was that Trump exposes a lot about his character in his tweets.
    On the media has an interesting podcast about the taxonomy of Trump’s Tweets that is informative on the issue.

  10. Generalfeldmarschall von Hindenburg says:

    I’m not sure what’s going to be the fallout of the Russophobic attacks on Trump. I noted that there have been dark, veiled threats from defenders of the status quo about what happens to people who go to the mat with the ‘intelligence community’. Even if Trump is successful in purging the apparat, it seems that the unwholesome kakistocrats have a worldwide network of foundations and other front groups to keep them in the lifestyle to which they feel entitled while they plot their return. Kind of like the Safari Club or the ODESSA.
    I do foresee a full frontal assault on the internet. The effort to turn it into a toothless shopping mall having largely failed, I think we will see a full throated roar from especially Democrats urging controls on who puts what online. Something like “Personal Internet Responsibility Act” or something. So people can be prosecuted for ‘hate speech’ or revealing state secrets. They could even get the Isrealis and the Chinese to provide the systems.

  11. turcopolier says:

    von Hindenburg
    Contrary to legend and Hollywood BS these are not rogue organizations. They operate within US law. there is no CIA “ODESSA.”

  12. John Minnerath says:

    A friend and I were talking about that very thing the other night.
    I was of the opinion that things could get out of hand and wondered if law enforcement could hold it down. He opined that it all was hot air and would amount to nothing.
    I hope he and you are correct.

  13. mike says:

    Speaking of Hollywood. I watched “High Noon” today. I was ten in 52 when it first played. Great movie, although I never took a shine to Grace Kelly and Gary Cooper. But otherwise it had good casting. And the screenplay was written by the blackballed Hollywood writer that also wrote “Bridge on the River Kwai”. At the time I fell in love with the beautiful Katie Jurado. Tex Ritter sang the award winning lead song. It was the film debut of Lee Van Cleef, a non-speaking part, but he had a Colt 45 on each hip set up for cross-draw AKA the Cavalry draw,
    My brother-in-law puts Trump in the role of Cooper, surrounded by enemies with no-one willing to stand up for him. But when my brother-in-law stubs his toe he thinks it is due to Clinton influence.

  14. Nancy K says:

    My 91 year old mother thinks Trump is a dictator. We feel he should not be treated any better than you treated Obama. What comes around goes around. You are right, these are scary times, however I am not afraid.

  15. Nancy K says:

    I, along with several others my age 70 + are attending marches on the 21st. Walrus, you can call us femnazi if you wish, but you are not an American, I am. My father was a POW in Germany, My brother and uncles served in the U.S. military, my son is in the US Navy. What you think is meaningless to me.

  16. Fred says:

    Well looks like another October Inaugural Surprise:
    So Orlando was a terrorist attack and …… more to come. Maybe now we’ll actually get an investigation.

  17. turcopolier says:

    Nancy K
    You are protesting his constitutional election? What kind of country do you want to live in? pl

  18. Dubhaltach says:

    In reply to Nancy K 16 January 2017 at 06:51 PM
    I’ll see your POW father and raise you my father-in-law who together with his mother fled the gestapo as a child with literally only the clothes on their backs. His father who got caught by the Gestapo and chucked into a concentration camp for helping the Danish jews escape was unable to join them because the gestapo said as they beat him that as he loved jews so much they might as treat him like one.
    I’d love to know how the fact that your father was a POW in Germany, that your brother and uncles served in the U.S. military and that your son is in the US Navy. Somehow means that somebody living outside of the USA isnn’t allowed comment on your politics.
    Would you care to enlighten me?
    No? Fine: Just remember to refrain from commenting on political developments outside of the USA in future.
    Or do you believe that you are in some way special? Are you perhaps so very very special that it’s perfectly in order for you to comment about others politics but they may not comment about yours.
    How exactly are you so superior to us lesser breeds that this situation obtains?

  19. Origin says:

    I know many women down here who are either going to DC or to a sister march in town. My sense from talking to them is that the march is not so much a protest of the election as a demonstration that denigration and degradation of women is unacceptable and that there is a huge mass of women who stand for decency against those who would try to stifle their voices or who would seek to stifle human rights. Their act is in the solid tradition of our country to speak out and stand up against those with whom they disagree. They are determined not to let their voices be silenced and progressive causes be abandoned by the Republicans.

  20. Babak Makkinejad says:

    I thought US was “Land of the Brave”…

  21. TV says:

    Nancy K:
    A 60’s leftover.
    “I protest, therefore I am.”

  22. Laura says:

    Hank L — For heaven’s sake, go to the Inauguration and ball. Fear is the biggest destroyer of democracy. No one is boycotting out of fear but out of conviction. If conviction can lead to a boycott, then certainly conviction should lead to attendance. I’m sure you and your dad will have a good time…and I can’t imagine any situation worse than the Battle of Okinawa.
    Go for it!

  23. Laura says:

    Turcopolier–He is elected. We don’t have to like it. We don’t have to cheer. We don’t have to watch.
    Women, however, were so thoroughly disparaged and demeaned by Trump, that they are ticked off and want to let him know it! He didn’t just disparage Hillary…he constantly and over many many years has thoroughly objectified and demeaned women.
    Yeah, that is a little simplistic but pretty much sums up how so many feel. We are not protesting his election exactly, we are protesting him. It’s kind of personal.

  24. Phil Cattar says:

    Yes Hank……………..I hear you.It is interesting to note that Nicole Kidman is an Australian.Id like to see some Americans follow her lead.

  25. Phil Cattar says:

    Hi General,I do not think the Israelis would benefit from a toothless internet.I think the Israelis are most certainly shrewd and clever enough to use a very open internet to their advantage.

  26. jld says:

    Sounds like you think Trump is not American or even anti-American.

  27. raven says:

    The kind where it is perfectly legal to express my opinion. I’m going to use every legal means possible to resist Trump and what he represents. I went to several of Paul Braun’s “town hall” meetings about the ACA and listened to Tea Party people bitch and moan about “socialism” and even had a veteran say that people who were for the ACA had not “earned” the right to criticize Congressman Braun for his stance. Is that the kind of country we live in?

  28. raven says:

    From Cynthia Dill”
    “There is a difference between a march and a protest: One moves forward, the other pushes back. There’s also a difference between a sore loser and someone who accepts the sting of defeat with humility and lives to fight another day.
    On Jan. 20, the 45th president of the United States will be sworn in, and festive, well-deserved celebrations will be had by the new commander in chief, his family and his supporters.
    On Jan. 21, all defenders of human rights are cordially invited to take their first step forward in the Women’s March on Washington. The mission is to celebrate and exercise the freedoms Americans are blessed to enjoy regardless of who wins an election.
    “In the spirit of democracy and honoring the champions of human rights, dignity and justice who have come before us, we join in diversity to show our presence in numbers too great to ignore,” according to a press release from march organizers. “The Women’s March on Washington will send a bold message to our new government on their first day in office, and to the world that women’s rights are human rights. We stand together, recognizing that defending the most marginalized among us is defending all of us.”

  29. jonst says:

    the kind where people are called “dictators” before they even assume Office.

  30. Tunde says:

    I’ve seen this sentiment for “finally an investigation can be conducted” being expressed but I have struggled to understand what the implication behind the statement means. I’m not trying to be a smart alek, but what are you implying ? That BHO’s administration failed to conduct an investigation ? For political reasons ? Or that the attack was not credited as being a terrorist lone wolf attack for political purposes ?
    What I see is a closeted homosexual who went a murderous rampage and conveniently whitewashed his actions by post ipso facto association with an equally murderous terrorist organization. I’d be happy to review my position though.

  31. Tunde says:

    PL and SSTers,
    Apologies if this has already been discussed but I was wondering if the exposure of Shai Masot, an Israeli diplomat at its London embassy, has been discussed; particularly its relevance to the pernicious effect that Israeli manipulation of the political classes in most western capitals has had on the peace process that Dov Weisglas famously quoted as being permanently in “formaldehyde”. If this kind of manipulation occurs in the UK, I’d imagine operations of greater scope and potential are the norm in the US.

  32. Ed says:

    Has anyone gotten the list of the George Webb video series on Eric Braverman?

  33. Eric Newhill says:

    Hank L,
    I’m seeing things the same way. I truly fear for where this ends up.
    It is a shame you Dad can’t go to the inauguration, but I think you are making the right decision all things considered.

  34. turcopolier says:

    raven, Nancy K and Laura
    Your reaction to Trump seems overdone to me. His proposed policies do not seem excessive to me. What, exactly is he claiming to want to do that is so terrible? You don’t like the border fence? I suspect that he is less likely to take us to war than Clinton would have been. At the personal level I see him as a typical vulgarian deal maker business man who expresses himself in locker room machismo talk that is largely empty of content. Should he shut up on Twitter? Sure, but is his comedy act really worse than John Lewis stating baldly that Trump is not legally elected? pl

  35. Fred says:

    My statement was poorly worded. I should have written about the failure to arrest this individual until well after the election was over rather than say “now we’ll actually get an investigation.” In regards to the other points you make I have no access to the police actual investigation to conclude that “a closeted homosexual who went a murderous rampage and conveniently whitewashed his actions by post ipso facto association with an equally murderous terrorist organization” nor do I draw that conclusion from the publicly available information I’ve see.

  36. Bill H says:

    And yet women generally are perfectly okay with supporting a candidate who enabled her husband to sexually assault young female interns in the Governor’s Office and the Oval Office; who bullied his victims into keeping silent. They are okay with a candidate who further insulted them by suggesting that they should vote for her merely because she is, like them, female.

  37. mike says:

    Daesh is collapsing in East Mosul. Jaza’ir, Zira’ah, and Durkazliyyah neighborhoods liberated. Daesh defences in Muhandiseen melted away fast and Iraqi forces took the area in hours. The Great Mosque has been retaken and is being cleared. Jonah’s mosque retaken yesterday, Mosul University taken Saturday.
    Daesh and their vehicles across the Tigris in West Mosul are being fired on by Irai troops from the right bank.

  38. mike says:

    Leftist or no, sounds like T-Rex, Trump’s pick to replace Kerry, also likes the Kurds based on his testimony at the Senate confirmation hearings.

  39. The Beaver says:

    Do some of those guys and gals have buyers’ remorse or are they opportunistic bootlickers?
    I do realise that the Israel firsters would like to be hired to push their agendas like Michael Chertoff and I do hope that we won’t have Dennis Ross again.

  40. ked says:

    Thinking about our Federal Government’s division of labor; I do believe the CEO of the Executive Branch as a comedy act is worse for the Republic than any bald statement by one of 435 members of the Legislature’s House. After all, Lewis merely represents among many while Trump executes solely. We shall soon see. I will be watching closely at trends in scale & style of domestic intel and LE activity… service to Borg, an emergent neo-Borg segment, or personality-driven.

  41. Raven,
    Curiosity bids me ask, what are the human/women’s rights that impel a women’s march on Washington. I haven’t heard any mention, during the campaign, of taking rights away with the exception of abortion. That one is, of course, a perennial republican party boilerplate issue to which Trump gave some lip service. However, it is mainly being fought out in the courts and state legislatures.

  42. notlurking says:

    Do these folks know that HRC voted in 2006 for the act that eventually built a 700 mile fence……but when DT talks about it all hell breaks loose…..high grade hypocrites…..

  43. Nancy K,
    I think you should gently point out to your 91 year old mother that Mr. Trump is, as yet, merely the somewhat tenuous head of a political party and that any self-respecting dictator should be able to dictate to his own party.

  44. Exactly. These liberals and their selective outrage grow so tiresome.

  45. Thanks for the link, Beaver. That was one of the funniest articles I think I’ve ever read in the DC funny pages. I just can’t get over what a monstrous sense of entitlement these creeps have. They attack their own nominee in public, denouncing him, his policies and all who support him … and then they expect him to give them all jobs? What a joke! For my part, I hope Trump keeps as many of these Bushies away from power as possible. The fact that his cabinet picks so far feature so few retreads is actually one of the best things about the incoming Trump administration. Putting these cretins inside his administration so that they could co-opt or sabotage it would be the worst thing Trump could do. At least with them on the outside throwing rocks at Trump, everybody knows the score and knows where the battle lines are.

  46. John Minnerath says:

    Those of you who want to protest Trump’s election and the inauguration, have at it.
    That’s your right, as long as it’s peaceful and you don’t interfere or attempt to impede others rights.
    Do that and you deserve to be arrested and tossed in jail.
    Nancy K’s family involvement in the military is important family history, but most of us now in our 70’s had family in WWII and also in the long list of conflicts since.

  47. Old Microbiologist says:

    Dubhaltach. Lol. I enjoyed that very much. Very rarely do we have the opportunity to say that.

  48. Old Microbiologist says:

    All the women in my household and friends I know still were absolutely indifferent to Trumps perceived misogamy. Most women are used to this, especially any that have been around men in a working environment. Had he actually done something that might be different but verbal comments like his? Some women are very thin skinned or awfully naive.

  49. Old Microbiologist says:

    It raises an important question doesn’t it? I have been warning my liberal ex-co workers still working for the Army to refrain from posting anti-Trump stuff on Facebook and Twitter but my warnings have fallen on deaf ears. If anything it has ramped up considerably the past few weeks. If they were in uniform then it would be illegal. However, these are all civilians and I believe disloyalty is a fireable offense. I suppose they could merely have their salaries cut to $1 as Congress re-enacted. But, it is an interesting question. Can Trump fire anyone working in the government that is disloyal? Frankly, researching it I can’t determine if this is possible or not. But, with Trump he might be one to take actions and let it sort out later. It would seem to me though that some kind of screening for 5th columnists inside the government would be prudent.

  50. I should have added, which he obviously can’t.

  51. raven says:

    This guy is who I am supposed to be loyal to?
    ““I’ve been so lucky in terms of that whole world. It is a dangerous world out there. It’s scary, like Vietnam. Sort of like the Vietnam-era,” Trump said in a video that resurfaced Tuesday on Buzzfeed, “It is my personal Vietnam. I feel like a great and very brave soldier.”

  52. turcopolier says:

    Nobody said you should be “loyal” to him. You are a private citizen. If you were a member of the US armed forces your utterances about him would be limited by UCMJ (Article 88) but you are not. BTW I do not think that making disrespectful statements about the president is a “firing offence” in the US Civil Service, but it is not a wise career move. pl

  53. Larry Kart says:

    Can you understand why the fact of a ” typical vulgarian deal maker business man” as president doesn’t sit well with many people who are not merely the detritus of the coastal “elites”? While your experience in the business world exceeds mine, I have doubts about Trump being “typical,” and would alter “vulgarian” to “proudly vulgarian” or something well beyond that, given (see, for one, his twitter behavior) Trump’s seemingly more than calculated need to broadcast his thoughts on every matter from the most trivial (his weekly SNL “reviews”?) to the most substantial, and given what the consequences of this novel, thin-skinned, quick-draw looseness in a president might be. Is this just a matter of style, something that will lessen once Trump is inaugurated and/or something that we and the world at large will get used to over time? I have my doubts on both fronts. One really big Trump slip on the international stage — say, an extreme taunt of China — and where will we be? And even if all this behavior is calculated on Trump’s part, as some argue, do we want our foreign policy to be run like a high-stakes poker game? In Trump’s previous milieu, it was possible for him to “fold ’em” when circumstances led to a big loss and then be rescued or even bolstered by some of the financial entities that had backed him in his ventures. In the milieu of U.S. foreign relations, trade and otherwise, probably not so much.
    As for John Lewis’ statement, which I don’t agree with both in terms of facts or tactics, his remarks are in my view not worse than what you call Trump’s “comedy,” simply because Lewis is just a congressman, and one whose ability to function as more than a cheerleader is negligible, while Trump soon will be the leader of the world’s most powerful nation.

  54. Among Trump’s utterances, he’s said he wants health insurance for everybody, wants Social Security and Medicare to remain intact and wants a massive public infrastructure rebuild program. It’s as if Bernie Sanders has pulled a Jedi mind trick on The Donald. If I wasn’t firmly convinced Trump is a consummate con man and bullshit artist, I’d be giddy. Instead, I’m just hopeful. If he does stick true and forcefully pushes this agenda, the Republicans won’t know whether to shit or go blind.

  55. turcopolier says:

    larry kart
    Trump is just shaking up people before he negotiates with them. For me it is his style that is objectionable. pl

  56. Dubhaltach says:

    In reply to raven 17 January 2017 at 12:19 PM
    To the best of my knowledge and belief the USA isn’t like the UK where you swear allegiance to the reigning monarch.
    To the best of my knowledge and belief your loyalty is meant to be to your country and its institutions such as your constitution.
    It’s perfectly possible to respect the Office of President of the USA without respecting a particular office holder.
    Or do you think of your president as some kind of king and that all those checks and balances are worthless?

  57. mike says:

    per the Iraqi Counter Terrorism Service: only one neighborhood left in E Mosul to liberate.

  58. Nancy K says:

    My mother feels he will be a dictator, she is aware he is not yet president. I am going to a March on the 21st, she is not afraid to go but feels she is physically unable. We both acknowledge he is our duly elected president but we have no desire to watch his inauguration.

  59. ked says:

    If ever there was a prez for whom “style IS the substance”, it may be Trump. His “shake ’em up to soften ’em up” is a shallow one-time-only negotiating tactic. It wears thin in a hurry among pros. Such players are quickly recognized and relegated to the 2nd and 3rd tier in no time. Maybe being prez will extend / improve his style (I fear nothing will) and a patient honeymoon on the world stage will benefit all of us (I fear he’s not the honeymooner type – too boring). Fortunately my fears & expectations matter not, but his policies and behavior (& of those closely surrounding him) does and there will be no hiding those. Break points: 100 Days / 1st SOTU / Mid-Terms / 1000 Days. Other calibration points will be his First Domestic Crisis & his First International Crisis.

  60. Nancy K says:

    I am not protesting his election at all. I recognize and accept he was elected and is or will be President Trump. I am not protesting against him but against some of the policies he and his party support. I don’t deny he worries me and his actions at times seem presidential to me but obviously he won.

  61. raven says:

    Isn’t his “style” supposed to be the great disrupter that is gong to make all this work?

  62. Nicole Kidman has been a U.S. citizen her whole life – she was born in Hawaii to Australian parents.

  63. turcopolier says:

    The disruption I have no problem with. the Chinese are playing the same game. it is the crudeness of his manner that I do not like. pl

  64. turcopolier says:

    Nancy K
    “some of the policies he and his party support” Like what? pl

  65. John Minnerath says:

    2nd and 3rd tier, one time tactic?
    I never particularly liked the guy, but his trump Organization is a hugely successful business enterprise.
    Third rate operators don’t accomplish things like that.

  66. turcopolier says:

    john minnerath
    Yes, T-Rex has the leverage. It will be impossible to ignore him. His most serious obstacles will IMO be faced in congress. pl

  67. Croesus says:

    Funny, I never thought much about my Dad’s war experiences, nor my Mother’s having to leave her home in Italy, not until it’s too late to talk to them about it. They were always too busy living their lives with grace and humor (both of which passed me by — maybe it was an overdose of Catholic nuns). But like some others, it’s become very important to me now. I suspect it’s vicarious virtue-signalling.
    Having been so overdosed, I’m interested-from-afar in Catholic reactions to Trump and world events. Sr. Maureen Fiedler had been someone I admired (also from afar); I see she will participate in the Women’s March to support terribly beleaguered wimmen, threatened as they are with the loss of their rights to — to what, exactly? Burn their bras? Loss of the ability to tell their granddaughters that “We voted for the first female president! She was corrupt and cackled over the murder of the leader of a state that used to be intact but now is not, but She was one of Us!”
    I’ve also been “binging” on Hugh Hewitt’s programs w/ Hillsdale College pres. Larry Arn, who, someone said, had been suggested for the Education slot that Vos is set to hold. Thank goodness. I’m auditing Hewitt/Arnn to get that Catholic perspective, but I’m not hearing anything that resonates with the “Catholic” of my Baltimore Catechism days. Hewitt & Hillsdale are more cozy with Netanyahu, the Kagans, and love for Israel than with Cardinal Bernardin’s “seamless garment of life”. I think they fancy themselves the second coming of Leo Strauss but without the CIA support (or maybe they do have CIA support).
    I think I’ll steer clear of the Mall on Friday. The story of Zacheus, who climbed a sycamore tree to see Jesus come into town, is one of my favorites, but Capitol police would likely look askance on tree-climbing, and anyway, C Span will see more than a man, er, woman on the street would be able to see.

  68. Nancy K says:

    I have no problem with a fence being built, you realize however we the taxpayers will pay for it. I am concerned about home people who have come here albeit illegally but have worked and been law bidding since coming especially children brought by their parents will be treated under President Trump.

  69. John Minnerath says:

    Yes sir, you are right, and from both sides of the aisle.

  70. Nancy K says:

    I don’t agree with what John Lewis said, I imagine he spoke in the heat of the moment, but he is not going to be the president.

  71. Nancy K says:

    Well I have to say I did come off as a pompous ass and of course everyone has the right to comment. I reacted poorly to the term femnazi.

  72. Nancy K says:

    Repealing ACA, going after Planned Parenthood, DeVoss as Sec of Educaion, privatizing Social Security and Medicare, to name a few.

  73. walrus says:

    And Nancy K, I am an American citizen, my mother was an American, I have at least 60 American cousins, nieces and nephews, many of them in the military. My father was born in Germany as a Jew and escaped to join the Australian Army, the rest of his family ended in the gas chambers. He was a war crimes investigator after the war.
    Your completely out of hand discarding of my opinion without any attempt at rebuttal demonstrates exactly my point about feminazis – completely bigoted absence of thought and rejection of anything that conflicts with their beliefs.
    For the record, you crucify Trump for what he said, not Bill Clinton for what he was proven to have done – and then support Bill Clintons enabler. Hillary Clinton?????? How can you possibly take a feminist position as a supporter of Clinton? If she was not a fake feminist and power junkie, she would have left Bill Clinton long ago.
    Have a great march.

  74. alba etie says:

    Yes I fully agree with you -it will be interesting & entertaining to watch The Donald defending the FDR New Deal Legacy – SSI et al against the full scale assault that Ryan will mount against ” Entitlements ” . I hold out hope that President Trump will stick to his guns , and make common cause with Senator Sanders – Fixing to lay in my supply of microwave popcornfor the coming CSpan fracas . .Meanwhile Congress Critter’s Price HHS nomination might be in deep shyte because of some stock purchases of big Pharma he made before voting on bills that increased those stock prices.

  75. alba etie says:

    Col Lang,
    I do not believe that T Rex will be confirmed – we shall see.

  76. doug says:

    Didn’t J. Assange say he would let himself be taken to the USA if C. Manning was commuted. Obama has called his bluff. She’s getting out in May. Assange better start packing his bags. If he’s a man of his word, that is.

  77. Stu Wood says:

    I would appreciate your take on Gen. Michael Flynn. I have read positive comments on him and probably more negative comments. As you have more intimate knowledge of the DC intel operations etc. than probably 99% of your commenters, your views would be appreciated.

  78. PeterHug says:

    If there is a way to achieve those outcomes with President Trump and current Republican Congress, I would be ecstatic – and quite amazed.
    It’s been quite interesting – my FaceBook newsfeed has been full of people complaining about their ACA individual market health insurance plans. They all appear to feel that they (i) pay too much in premiums, (ii) have deductibles that are too high, (iii) have plans that are too complicated or limit their networks, and (iv) have voted for Trump.
    As far as I can see, they want Medicare-for-all but at the same time are adamant that no Government program can be effective. Oh, and most of them are completely of the opinion that the US Military is the best-run operation on the planet.
    The extent of internal cognitive dissonance that is being expressed is fairly impressive.

  79. crone says:

    John Lewis is more than a congressman… he is an icon of the Civil Rights Movement, and as such his words carry enormous influence.

  80. turcopolier says:

    Nancy K
    He says that his replacement will cover all, maybe not as much but all. OK on planned parenthood. He has said he will not touch SS and Medicare/Medicaid. you think he is a liar? pl

  81. ked says:

    The Trump Org may be “hugely successful”, but that doesn’t mean corporate businessmen and private sector proprietors like dealing with it, or more to the point, him. Big business comprises all kinds. It doesn’t appear that many large public corporations or large-valuation private players do much repeat business with the Trump Org, other than financial institutions who have been required to by bankruptcy proceedings. Perhaps we will see an improvement in the Trump Org’s peer-level and large strategic partner dealings going forward.

  82. turcopolier says:

    It doesn’t matter if they like him. It doesn’t matter at all. pl

  83. turcopolier says:

    Nancy K
    You do know I am sure that we already have a lot of very effective border fence and other barriers and that there is a great deal of money appropriated for more fence that Obama simply did not build. Why? John Lewis is a sworn official of the US Government. For him to state that Trump will not be a “legitimate” president is to challenge the legitimacy of the government. pl

  84. Valissa says:

    McCain leans toward voting for Tillerson
    IMO, Tillerson will most likely be confirmed. He has the backing of a respected segment of the Republican FP elite, and I’ve read that he’s got lots of behind the scene elite supporters who are working the phones to persuade certain senators.
    GOP heavyweights with ties to Exxon pushed Tillerson

  85. Edward Amame says:

    Nancy K
    Don’t apologize. That was a comment worthy of the Rush Limbaugh show. Not this blog.

  86. Edward Amame says:

    No, she objected to your use of the extremely unnecessary, extremely loaded term “feminazi” to describe her and Democratic women who maybe object to the defunding of Planned Parenthood or the grabbing of their private parts, or whatever.
    And nice job mansplaining to the little lady how to correctly think about the Clintons.
    I hope she does have a great march.

  87. Edward Amame says:

    Seamus Padraig
    As do you and yours.

  88. Edward Amame says:

    Old Microbiologist
    So all women have to be like the the ones in your household? My wife went through that kind of shit on Mad Ave some 20 years ago and quit to start her own company. Not all women have to take that kind of BS. And they don’t have to sit through lectures from you or Seamus P either.

  89. Nancy K says:

    I don’t think he is lying about SS and Medicare but I don’t think the Republican Congress will allow it. They are already devising changes.

  90. Nancy K says:

    When Rebublicans challenged Obama’s legitimacy stating he was not born in the US, a charge that Trump also issued, was that challenging the legitimacy of our governmeny?

  91. turcopolier says:

    Nancy K
    No. What was challenged was Obama’s qualification to hold the office, not that he was legitimately elected. pl

  92. Edward Amame says:

    Col Lang
    You didn’t ask me, but I’ll throw in my two cents anyway. I honestly think he’ll say whatever, at the moment, is politically expedient (ie; the wall, the Muslim ban, he won’t pursue a Clinton indictment, etc). But I sincerely hope I am wrong. I would like to have Soc Sec and Medicare when I retire as they are now, not as Mr Trump’s party envisions them.

  93. Nancy K says:

    I apologize for my unthoughtful remark to you. I thought from other posts you were not a US citizen, but even if you weren’t of course you have every right to voice your opinions. I am not judging Trump on his morals, I’ve been married 3 times myself, and I would never describe Bill Clinton as moral, but I also don’t judge Hillary regarding leaving or staying with him. Sometimes dysfunctional marriages last the longest. Again I am sorry about my response to you.

  94. Tidewater says:

    Tidewater says,
    Historians will tell you that ODESSA, as a highly organized and well-financed escape route for NAZI Gestapo and Waffen SS men fearing prosecution for war crimes, never existed. A glance at a map reminds one that the way out of Europe was through Spain.
    Once in Franco’s Spain, even if there were warrants out for you in Allied countries, you were entitled to the full protection of the law. Even under your own identity.
    An example would be a commander of the 16th SS Panzer Grenadiers, Anton Galler, who directed the reprisal against the Italian hill village of Sant’Anna di Stazzema in Tuscany, on 12 August 1944. There had been no incidents in that area of partisans attacking German troops, and the village, which was crowded with refugees, thought it was safe. However, it was decided by the German high command that a reprisal was necessary to set an example that would discourage the people of the Apennines from offering food and shelter to the partisans. When the German signal flare went up, many Italian men realized what was happening, and got away into the woods. Most of the victims were old men, women and children. One hundred and thirty children died; there were a lot of women.
    Anton Galler made it to Spain. I once lived for a while in the same town where he settled and where he had many good years. I probably walked by him. There was another German in this little port town who had arrived in 1954 with an old army truck and a lot of tools who made a fortune developing vacation bungalows. He was said to be an Army engineer type. He had a good rep. Drove a big gray Mercedes. Very impressive looking guy. I noticed him one time going into a Farmacia near the cafe table I was sitting at. I now realize he was probably buying some of that very good German saw palmetto. A couple of years ago I checked up on him on the internet. Turns out he was one of the highest decorated German officers of WWII and did four years or so in a French prison for the execution of some Canadian soldiers after D-day. Politicans wanted to give him the works back in Canada, but some defense lawyers found out that the Canadians had issued written (signed) orders that no prisoners were to be taken, and further, Canadian troops had tied German prisoners to the front of their vehicles as they went into action. So they gave him to the French.
    The way it worked on the Costa Blanca was that there was some sort of an old boy’s association in place for a few years, where escapees stayed for a short while till their new lives were arranged, identities etc., and then they went by fishing boat to North Africa. This was an over-night run. From there to the coast of Morocco, say Casablanca, and then by ship to South America. The organization that accomplished this was called Die Spinne. Once upon a time I heard a lot of gossip about Die Spinne from expatriates.
    I don’t know how many years Die Spinne operated. It might be remembered that all during WWII there was heavy German investment in Spanish businesses and industry. How did that play out later?
    I have absolutely no doubt that Die Spinne existed.
    The Spaniards–delivery guys and caterers etc.– said that it got pretty wild out at the vacation bungalows on April 20, what with all the emotional songs and salutes around the swimming pool.

  95. Nancy K says:

    I see the difference. I don’t question Trumps legitimacy, for better or worse he is our president.

  96. Tyler says:

    A chance for you to virtue signal AND cuck. Figured you couldn’t resist.

  97. Tyler says:

    I’m an ACTUAL veteran so I guess my opinion, you could say, TRUMPS that of a feminazi?

  98. Tyler says:

    Government spending a liberal doesn’t like. Glory be and wonders never cease.
    You do realize the WALL costs less than a year of Obamacare, right?

  99. Tyler says:

    He might be a saint in Progressive Secularism but outside your religion no one cares.

  100. Tyler says:

    You’re totally right. The woman who laughed about Ghaddafi’s rape torture is a lot better than you taking tongue in cheek comments out of context.
    What’s CTR paying you Corvinus?

  101. GulfCoastPirate says:

    turcopolier wrote: He says that his replacement will cover all, maybe not as much but all. OK on planned parenthood. He has said he will not touch SS and Medicare/Medicaid. you think he is a liar?
    In a word – YES. I still can’t figure out what you folks see in this guy. You give him the benefit of the doubt in a way you never would for Obama.

  102. GulfCoastPirate says:

    turcopolier wrote:He says that his replacement will cover all, maybe not as much but all.
    If you have as much business experience as you say you do then you know good and well that there were a lot of business people who were threatening to stop health care for their employees in 2008 if something wasn’t done to stop the cost shifting that was going on from folks showing up at emergency rooms and elsewhere who couldn’t pay their bills. Those costs were getting directly transferred to those who had insurance. One thing the ACA tried to do was stop the deadbeats who weren’t paying. The report that came out today from the Congressional Budget Office laid out what was going to happen if the ACA was repealed and it didn’t even go into how many businesses were going to stop employee coverage when the costs rose as they discussed. When Trump says he is going to take on his party and make sure their replacement covers all the same costs I for one do not believe him. He is lying and he knows it because the only way to do that is have the ACA or go to the single payer option. Do you think he can get single payer through a Republican Congress?

  103. Tyler says:

    Yeah he was so homosexual he was having an affair with another woman on the side.
    The reality is that the “closeted homosexual” angle was played up by the media desperate to handwave away yet another string of killings of the RELIGION OF PEACE in the face of God Emperor Trump being correct yet again. There was no evidence that Omar was homosexual in any which way, and all of his supposed “lovers” turned out to be engaged in typical gay fabulism.

  104. Tyler says:

    As I’ve said, progressives are emotional children who can’t rationally articulate their position because MUH FEELZ.
    Thanks for admitting as much.

  105. Tyler says:

    You’re gonna repost links from HuffPaint Post and Buzzfeed when you’re not waiting around here to be banned for general idiocy. That’s all you’re gonna do.

  106. Tyler says:

    Maybe Trump is the Jedi who has real world experience in making things happen and “Free College and Health Care for Everyone!!!” Bernie is the Bullshit Artist who’s existed in the prog bubble his entire adult life??
    rlly makes u think…….

  107. turcopolier says:

    There is only one answer (irony alert). We must be racists. pl

  108. turcopolier says:

    You caught me. I was really a janitor. In government I ran a lot of big line organizations. In business I was an executive level business developer and government relations guy. I didn’t supervise anyone but my office staff, so that is news to me. Thanks. I favor the single payer option. Could he get it through the Congress, probably not but I would like to see what he actually proposes before calling him a liar. pl

  109. mike says:

    GCP – “Do you think he can get single payer through a Republican Congress?
    For that, they would impeach him on a heartbeat. Strange though as it would be good for business both big corporations and the Mom-&-Poppers. You would think they would be good with it for that reason alone. Strange ideology they have.

  110. Eric Newhill says:

    Nancy K,
    Genuinely curious; what exactly, then are you marching about? Do you think that Trump is going to get on Marine1 and fly down to your hometown and grab your private parts? Or anyone else’s?
    Are you bored? Need attention? What?
    Thank you for your kind consideration

  111. Tyler,
    If Trump manages to pull off or even come close to protecting Social Security and Medicare, providing health care for all, and initiating a massive public infrastructure build, I’ll be willing to stand on the Mall and hail him as a Jedi… the great progressive Jedi knight. Bernie will probably be standing right there with me.

  112. GCP,
    Trump is a bullshit artist and con man, but he’s gotten awfully far with that. One thing I’ve learned about him is that he is not to sold short or taken for granted. Maybe once he’s President he can pull off this progressive side of his agenda. He will have allies in Congress for this, although it won’t be the Republicans. He beat them once. Maybe he can do it again. I’m willing to wait and see. I certainly don’t wish the President to fail in everything he tries to implement as the Republicans did with Obama.

  113. GulfCoastPirate says:

    I’m not trying to ‘catch’ anyone. The facts are the facts. Something like the ACA was needed or the business community was going to abandon their employees. Everyone knew it – including the Republicans. You can’t go back now and anyone who says differently is a liar. If you owned a business that provided health care to your employees would you continue to pay for the cost shifting because politicians couldn’t bring about an ACA or a single payer option? Of course not. Trump knows this. He’s been paying for health care for a long time. He’s lying through his teeth about repeal, replace, etc.
    Single payer is the only efficient option.

  114. BillWade says:

    Nancy, I had to drive my wife’s car today and she listens to NPR so I listen to it on these rare occasions. They interviewed a woman from Tennessee who said “The day Donald Trump was elected was like the end of WW II for me, I was that overjoyed”. Her reason: she had to cancel her ACA after her payment rose to $1700 per month (5 children and a husband).
    And, I’m sorry, things are going to get worse for Democrats: oh well, you can look forward to 20 years of Republican rule.

  115. gowithit says:

    Yes, “free college” via Trump University! LOL

  116. Tyler says:

    People killed by Trump University: Zero
    People Killed by Hillary’s Meddling in the ME and the Nobel Peace Prize Winner Drone Striking their Wedding: ????

  117. Tyler says:

    No, Bernie won’t. Leopards don’t change their spots.

  118. Tyler,
    “Leopards don’t change their spots.”
    You’re right. Bernie’s been pushing these ideas for decades and is consistent in holding Trump to these promises. He says so every other day. He’ll work with him towards these goals or call him a liar to his face. You haven’t been keeping up.

  119. PeterHug says:

    If that happens, I’ll be standing there right next to you and Bernie – and there will be a bunch of Progressives who voted for Bernie right next to both of us.
    (Full disclosure – I am not yet holding my breath on this one…)

  120. gowithit says:

    A pox on Criminal Hilary. As for Tweetie Clown Trump, I must give hope that he will not be a warlord. That might be a salvation, I admit. His domestic/econ is a mess of contradictions, though. Even the Repubs, “What he saying?”
    I wonder what the unemployed coal miners will think 4. 8 yrs from now when they DON’T see their jobs come back per Trump’s promise-as natural gas and surface mining of coal continue to overtake sub-surface mining. At least Clinton told them the truth (maybe her only time of truth telling!)
    This past election was so bizarre I found myself voting for Bernie in the primary and Johnson in the general–now, even I can’t explain that to myself!

  121. Babak Makkinejad says:

    I believe it.
    I was told about this bar in Bogota, frequented by Germans; on one side sat the German Jews, on the other side the Aryans – glaring at one another.

  122. Babak Makkinejad says:

    Just going to result in the same thing; more dead young Kurds.

  123. Babak Makkinejad says:

    What happened to freedom of expression; cutting off someone livelihood due to his political stance is what they did in USSR – to refusniks, for example.

  124. Tidewater says:

    Tidewater says,
    I most sincerely wish for you and your friends a very happy and successful journey to Washington, D.C., a good demonstration, some new friends made, a merry dinner in a good Georgetown restaurant, and a safe return. And I hope we get to hear a little about it.

  125. Jack says:

    “Single payer is the only efficient option.”
    Why has Medicare expenditures which is essentially single payer for seniors grown at a 9% CAGR for over 50 years? Doubling every 8 years. Health care expenditures by the federal government is already a third of total federal expenditures and the single largest category. How much will it be in the next doubling period for health care expenditures?
    Health care spend on a per capita basis in the US is twice any other western country.
    If whatever single payer system is devised and it is just like Medicare, it will not solve the escalating cost problem. Single payer works to control costs in Canada by rationing care. Yes, Death Panels. There’s no reason why a non-single payer system couldn’t also ration care. The health care system in the US will blow up financially wether we have single payer or not unless costs can be controlled. If per capita expenditures on health care in the US is the same as Canada or Germany then there will have to be 50% cuts. Yes, Medicare expenditures would have to be cut by half. Which politician do you think of either party will do that?

  126. Jack says:

    Nothing to do with ideology. And everything to do with the power of the health lobby who have both parties in their pocket. Who do you think wrote Obamacare legislation?

  127. charly says:

    Is that a problem if they run left of Hillary?

  128. alba etie says:

    Col Lang
    The single payer I agree would be our best solution . We could call it Trump Bigly Medicare for All even if that would get it approved . It could be Medicare E ( for everybody ) , with each of us being means tested not only for what we could pay for premiums , but more importantly how we managed our individual ‘risks” to the insured pool . That is if I at sixty three years young have quit smoking , get exercise every day ,eat healthy etc – then my premium should reflect that as means test for managing risk to the pool well . This at least could be a place to start – we have to have single payer – I am very tired and angry at being extorted by the Big Insurance Companies , having to pay upwards to twelve grand a year including premiums and deductables for nothing more then catastrophic coverage .

  129. Nancy K says:

    I think all US citizens are equally entitled to their opinions.

  130. Nancy K says:

    I have never been concerned about my private parts being grabbed by Trump. As I have mentioned before my concerns have more to do with policy vs private parts. I’m not bored and get all the attention I need. My husband is marching with me. We both have concerns regarding the direction of the country. I trust Trump more than some of the Republicans in power and I truly hope Trump can achieve some of his goals.

  131. Edward Amame says:

    Talk to the hand.

  132. Edward Amame says:

    Eric Newhill
    Not genuine curiosity. A chance to insult with questions. This thread has been an eye-opener.

  133. Edward Amame says:


  134. turcopolier says:

    My understanding is that Canada rations optional procedures like hip replacements rather than essential care. pl

  135. Edward Amame says:

    Really? Washington DC “Councilmember Charles Allen told News4 on Wednesday that about 200 permits were requested for the inauguration on Friday, Jan. 20. The city has received about 1,800 permits for the following day, Jan. 21, when thousands are expected to attend the Women’s March on Washington in protest of President-elect Donald Trump.”

  136. turcopolier says:

    EA & Tyler
    You two are sliding toward your old behavior. Be careful. pl

  137. Edward Amame says:

    Col Lang
    I would politely disagree. The birther movement, of which our President elect was a prominent member, was an attempt to delegitimize his presidency.

  138. Edward Amame says:

    Col Lang
    Noted. My resolution for the year going forward is just not to engage with him. It’s pointless.

  139. turcopolier says:

    Birtherism was an attempt to remove him from office as constitutionally unqualified. pl

  140. Eric Newhill says:

    alba etie,
    So, in your plan, the sickest people, needing insurance/healthcare the most and the least likely to be employed (due to illness), would get the highest risk rating and be priced out of the market?
    You would prefer to be extorted by the federal govt as opposed to private insurance companies. Does that make it feel better to you?
    Do you know why you have to pay around $12K in premiums per annum? That is because, actuarially, that is what your risk pools costs in healthcare claims. You may not personally rack up that amount of healthcare service expenses, but someone else in your risk pool is.
    Private for profit insurance running at around 82% to 85% MLR. Not for profit Blue Cross plans running at around 88% to 90% MLR (MLR = medical loss ratio; the amount of each premium $ that comes in that goes right back out the door to pay claims). Premiums offered by the for profits are about the same as though offered by the not for profits. Not for profits have marginally richer benefits.
    For profits running at around 7% to 8% admin expense. Not for profits at 8% to 9% admin expense. federal govt also has admin costs if given a federal singer payer. So, you should be able to do the math above and see that eliminating private for profit companies doesn’t do much to save $s.
    But that’s only one side of the equation. The for profits are incentivized to keep costs down. They do a lot in the area of contracting to lower cost (look at an eob some time. Observe what the doctor/hospital charged versus what they were paid by insurance – a mere %). The for profits organize provider networks to ensure that covered members have access to a full range of care, specialties, etc. Then there are all of the care management programs that for profits have implemented (flags built into to data warehouses to ensure members with serious or chronic conditions aren’t falling through the gaps – a members identified in claims data as having diabetes, but no claims for the prescription meds, gets a call to remind to use the meds. Or his physician gets a call). All of these types of activities and more, performed by insurance companies, saves far more (translating to lower premium) than the % the company earns and keeps as profit.
    The reason costs are so high in the US is that you get the best of everything and lots of it compared to the socialized systems. That’s what people demanded and it is what the providers demanded (all the latest wiz bang equipment). So we pay for that. It’s all technology driven cost. The socialized systems ration that stuff. They ration a lot of non-essential care. Canada doesn’t even pay for prescription drugs, long term care or mental health, let alone offer a hospital bed with the latest air flow mattress. Procedures like knee and hip replacement (high volume utilization in the US and about $14 a pop when all said and done) are routinely done in the US, but require potentially years on a waiting list in Canada or England, It’s the rationing that allows the socialized systems to have lower cost per covered life; not the absence of for profit corporate delivery of insurance.

  141. Eric Newhill says:

    Canada does not pay for prescription drugs, mental health services or long term care. As you note, non-essential procedures like hip/knee replacements are covered, but only when less invasive (and less expensive) options are completely exhausted. Then the wait can be years.
    Canada is basic coverage only. That’s why those who can afford it have private insurance to supplement what the govt offers and/or they come to the US to get things like hips and knees done faster.
    In Canada you won’t get the latest and greatest technology, you get adequate technology.
    There have been problems in Canada with physicians leaving and coming to the US or leaving the original specialty for a more profitable one and thus creating provider access gaps for citizens; because the govt sets reimbursement too low (in the physicians’ opinion).
    Canada – or any other socialized system – is not a medical services utopia as it is often made out to be. It’s all about trade offs that no one seems to want to recognize, let alone talk about.

  142. Edward Amame says:

    GulfCoastPirate, TTG, and Col Lang
    Replacing the ACA will be difficult for Trump with a GOP congress.
    Paul Krugman describes how the ACA works about succinctly as I’ve seen anywhere. It’s like a three-legged stool, made up of: community rating + individual mandate + subsidies. The starting point is providing healthcare to all, including those with preconditions. Non-discriminating requires the individual mandate, otherwise only sick people will sign up and we wind up with a bad risk pool/ too-high costs. Finally subsidies are required for people/families who can’t afford the purchase insurance.
    The GOP likes the part about non-discriminating against people with pre-conditions, but doesn’t like the individual mandate and subsidies. How do they can get around that?

  143. Tyler says:

    Low test womanly snark. Surprise surprise.

  144. Tyler says:

    I was mocking you roll calling the accomplishments of others as a warrant for your arguments.

  145. Tyler says:

    When you’re paying for protests, its amazing how many people will show up.

  146. Tyler says:

    And he has what to show for it?
    You call Trump a BS artist yet he is exactly as he appears: a loud mouth billionaire.
    Meanwhile your boy Bernie rolled over for Borg Grandma while claiming to “rah rah fight the power” and supported her from one of his vacation houses while LARPing as some people’s champion.
    Might need to check yer premises.

  147. Tyler says:

    Lmbo like he won’t build the wall and like he won’t bring back jobs.
    Plz tell me more from your alternate reality, traveler.

  148. Tyler says:

    Can we have a post about Obama pardoning Bradley Manning and a FARC terrorist who literally set off 100s of bombs in NY?

  149. mike says:

    four hours ago
    Iraq’s special forces announced that their mission in east Mosul has ended. They have fulfilled their tasks.
    However the eastern half of the city is not yet free. ISOF mission is done, but Iraq’s army regulars still need to retake several areas in the north. And there will be extensive mop-up for Daesh stay-behind cells by the federal police.

  150. Nancy K says:

    Don’t you think that Trumpcare is also going to cost. Insurance companies only care about profit, not about people. That women is still going to pay a lot. It was an insurance company not Obama that raised her rates.

  151. Edward Amame says:

    Col Lang
    I again politely disagree.
    There was never the slightest question that Obama’s a natural born citizen. His American mother gave birth to him on American soil. That should have been the end of story. But it wasn’t, even after Obama produced his birth certificate. Trump suggested that it was faked, and then that the state health official who certified it was murdered.
    Trump tried to create suspicions and doubts about the legitimacy of Obama’s presidency. Now he faces suspicions and questions of legitimacy over his. It couldn’t have happened to a nicer guy.

  152. turcopolier says:

    So, for you “birtherism” was simply racism. You have no sympathy at all for your opponents. Too bad. I am not talking about me. I am not your opponent. pl

  153. Edward Amame says:

    Col Lang
    Nothing, IMO, is ever “simple.” Birtherism was a conspiricist fringe movement on the far right. For some, birtherism may have been a reaction to our first black president. For others, it may have simply been because he was a Democrat or perceived as a Socialist. And many may actually have believed birther nonsense. So, no – for me “birtherism” was not simply racism.
    I don’t know what Trump’s reasons are for getting on board, but I doubt it was any of the reasons I suggested above. Birtherism was the springboard to his nomination. That may have been Machiavellian or dumb luck. It’s too soon to tell.
    I’ve never thought of you as an opponent.

  154. The Beaver says:

    One who believes that she is in La La Land :
    I would like to see her being another b—h like Samantha and then get punched (figuratively) by the Russian Ambassador 🙂

  155. Eric Newhill says:

    A lot of Medicare is already privatized (see Medicare Advantage plans) and works really well. The feds are happy because private companies manage the population better and cheaper than CMS can. So, that is one point of concern that you can let go of.
    I’m with you on privatization of social security. That concerns me, but, really, it depends on the plan. I think it is irrational to trust government more than the private sector. We will see what happens there.
    My understanding is that Planned Parenthood services – other than abortions – would continue; perhaps in some other form.

  156. Eric Newhill says:

    The insurance company raised the rates because the woman and her cohort cost that much. These ACA people are really expensive (meaning incur far above normal medical costs). One reason is all the pre-existing conditions. The other is that the way the pre-existing condition clause in the law was written, lends itself to abuse. People sign up when they need expensive healthcare. When they’re better, they drop out. Then they sign up again when another expensive healthcare need is foreseen. They are not paying in continuously. It would be like being able to purchase car insurance only when you’ve had an accident.
    Your abject paranoia about private industry is really warping your understanding of the way things work.

  157. Eric Newhill,
    I believe you have a deep background in this field so I’d be interested in your thoughts/observations about the costs of extraordinary end of life medical care. Is this the drain on our health care system that I think it is? You also made a good point about Medicare Advantage in your comment to NancyK. How does the record keeping burden of Medicare Advantage companies compare to companies not in this system? I would think it would be simpler and less burdensome.
    My experience with the VA medical system has been nothing but good. The rating process lasted a year for me. I was kept updated on a monthly basis with four actual medical evaluations at VA hospitals and contract clinics. With no trying or need to argue, I ended up with 70% disability rating. Since I still consider myself in fairly decent shape, I didn’t think this was possible. I now go to the VA clinic in Fredericksburg where the care is excellent. My initial appointment was an hour long evaluation/interview with a doctor and team of nurses who probed very thoroughly to determine any physical or mental issues that I did not disclose. It was obvious they cared very much about what they were doing. Appointments always begin promptly. This is also true with the VA hospital in Richmond. The competency, professionalism and efficiency I found in the VA stands in stark contrast to some of the horror stories we read about. This is 100% socialized medical care. There must be some lessons here for a “medical care for all” plan for all Americans.

  158. trinlae says:

    New Gurkha documentary from 2016 fyi

  159. trinlae says:

    Here is another video, with great graphics, on the macro history of Russia, in this era of “narratives of suspicion:”

  160. Eric Newhill says:

    Krugman? Oh sheesh.
    I actually work on the ACA product for one of the big five insurance companies and I can tell you with 100% certainty that Krugman, as usual, is full of it. He is describing Obama’s fantasy about how it work; not what is actually happening in that irksome, to liberals, thing called “reality”.
    See upstream my recent replies to your fellow traveler, NancyK.
    The young and healthy did not sign up (why would they? The premium costs more than the penalty and they’re healthy and don’t need care). The no precondition exclusion rules means that the sick only sign up when they need care and drop out when they do not. So they’re not paying in until they know that they will take out more than they pay in. Most people on the ACA that I see are not qualifying for subsidies, or, if they do, they subsidy is small and they still have a substantial personal premium responsibility.
    At this point premiums have to go up to cover the medical expenses of the population. The higher the premium the more adverse selection and moral hazard. If the ACA isn’t killed off by Trump, it will certainly die an ugly death soon all on its own.
    So the ACA, as designed gets a big fat ‘F’ – maybe a ‘D’ if there’s some kind of curve for government work.

  161. Fred says:

    The Beaver,
    “Haley said she did not like abstentions and would not abstain on U.N. votes.”
    She’s going to do what the President tells her or get fired.

  162. Fred says:

    “This is 100% socialized medical care.”
    I disagree. This is medical care earned for services rendered.

  163. turcopolier says:

    I have 10% disability as a relic of a time before 9/11 when disability judgments were very tough. everyone I know who has retired or has been evaluated since 9/11 has at least 70% disability. Must be nice. pl

  164. Eric Newhill says:

    Both my son and my father (who passed away in 2012) have/had VA disability ratings. My wife and I helped our son through the process (blast injury in Afghanistan/brain damaged).
    My dad loved the VA in Detroit. He got excellent care from my perspective (and his) for a knee wound he received on Okinawa that got a lost worse in his later years. He also got diabetes and other care there. All top notch, IMO.
    Within 6 months of our son’s discharge from the Army we had him rated at 90% disabled and then, I think it was year later, he moved up to 100%. I think that the scope and scale services available to him at the Canandaigua and Buffalo VAs are excellent.Believe me, he needs them. Talk to him for more than 5 minutes and you realize that not all wires are connected. He has trouble taking care of himself and staying out of trouble(and he was a Norwich grad and a 1st Lt at the time of his wounding).
    My family’s experience with the VA concurs with yours.
    Record keeping is not a burden for companies carrying Medicare Advantage because they already have the infrastructure set up for their commercial plans (at least at the two companies I have worked for – a blues plan that covers all of upstate NY and now one of the big 5 nationwide carriers).
    End of life care is expensive and there is a lot opportunity for cost reduction (I did a comprehensive study several years ago). Of course, it depends on how define “end of life”. If you include chemotherapy – especially off-label use of new expensive drugs – for cancers that have little chance of remission, then the costs involved get more significant. Still, while a significant contributor to overall costs, it is not by any means the only one.
    End of life care involves the more fundamental problem which plagues all areas of healthcare delivery – new expensive technology where the marginal benefit is less than the marginal cost. Adequate technology and care versus the best and newest and most pricey.
    The real story, TTG, is that the presence of insurance $s financed the culture of new technology development. There really wasn’t anyone there in the beginning to say, “Hey that doesn’t add much value, but it sure costs a lot. We won’t cover it”. The purchaser on the provider end wanted it and knew insurance would pay for it. The consumer (i.e. patient) didn’t know the value versus cost and wanted the best. It wasn’t coming out of their pocket at the point of purchase. The insurance company just spread the increased cost across premiums. Who’s going to notice or care if a premium costs a few extra bucks next year? So a vicious upwards spiral began with more and more of this new tech being introduced. Finally, people started to gripe. Insurance companies tried to deny unproven or non-cost/benefit efficient technologies and procedures. They experienced a horrible backlash. Michael Moore said they were evil profiteers killing off poor sick single mothers by denying life saving treatments. It was all over the news several years ago. Witness some of our commenters here that still believe that crap. So insurance companies worked more on the contract end of things to keep cost down (though we will deny some procedures and technologies that aren’t cost effective if there is some reasonable alternative).
    So that’s how we got where we are today. The ACA does nothing to address any of that. The socialized systems ration care. You don’t get the best and newest. Just what is basic and adequate. That is how those systems save money.
    Still – here’s the kicker – new technologies will continue to be introduced. These will allow more people to be treated, each, for more conditions. Costs will continue to rise. Private or socialized this will happen. We spend 17% of GDP on healthcare today; quickly on the way to 20%. How much more can we put into healthcare? Hard choices are going to have to be made and there is no ready made model to address the issues. IMO, everyone is sticking their heads in the sand right now. Everyone.

  165. Fred,
    Yes, it was definitely earned, but it’s still socialized medical care.

  166. Jack says:

    The only way that Canada, Germany, UK, etc spend half of what we spend per capita is through restrictions on care. The biggest issue in US health care is cost. That is the elephant in the room that no one wants to discuss let alone address. The focus is exclusively about coverage. If we bring our expenditure on health care down by half to be comparable to Canada and France then there should be no problem financially to cover everyone. The question is how to cut expenditures in half politically when the politics is about entitlement. Note that those who advocate single payer are not noting if they’ll cut expenditures by half to be comparable to the examples of Canada that they point to.

  167. pl,
    It’s nice except when I look at my x-rays. The good thing about tinnitus is that the ringing drowns out the voices. That was due to the squids lobbing their 5 inch shells into the Shouf while I was forward of the line of troops. My bad.

  168. turcopolier says:

    I do not begrudge you anything and could probably go get more but I do not wish to entrust myself to the guvmint yet again. I am quite happy with Medicare and Tricare for life. My medical records look like the wreckage of a lumberjack’s life. pl

  169. Jack says:

    “It’s all about trade offs that no one seems to want to recognize, let alone talk about.”
    You’ve hit the nail on the head. Most talk about single payer as a panacea that would allow universal coverage and health services at twice the spend of other countries with socialized medicine. No one discusses why those countries spend half of what we spend and if we emulate them completely then for example federal expenditures on health care will be cut in half. Who is going to bear those cuts? No one wants that from recipients of care to the pharmaceutical companies and the health care service providers. Its only a matter of one or two more doubling periods when the financing of health care will blow up.

  170. Kooshy says:

    I have a dream that if, this nation can one day, curb it’s enthusiasm for more wars and forign interventions can actualy afford to provide her old and young, colored and white citizens, a better, more affordable, better managed, health care. To me that’s the basic and the least that a rich, industrialized world class shining on the hill power is obliged to provide to her devoted citizenry. ACA did not do that, although most admittedly Medicare did for the retired segment. My wife a CPA thinks ACA is just another tax burden on the working middle class.

  171. walrus says:

    Scott Adams the cartoonist has done a masterful job over months explaining that people only do as much ‘reality” as is necessary to survive and procreate – hence your reality and my reality do not necessarily coincide. It is thus possible for humans to think that
    (a) Trump is a women hating version of Hitler, or
    (b) Hilary Clinton is the wicked witch of the West.
    We suffer from “confirmation bias” in that we tend to believe stuff that buttresses our reality and ignore the rest.
    We are creatures ruled by emotion much more than facts and part of our problem is that we deny this. Adams explains this in much more detail.
    Adams picked Trump as the winner twelve months ago because he believes Trump is the best persuader he has ever seen.
    For Nancy K, Edward A and others who hold heartfelt objections to Trumps Presidency, your feelings are perfectly understandable. What you are going to experience in the next few months is cognitive dissonance because Trump is going to do things that really shake up your worldview of who he is, not mine. He will do this by making certain issues automatically thought of as “left” his own and thus totally confound his critics.
    Watch the media run around wit their hair on fire over Trumps actions on illegal immigration, healthcare, etc. you are going to be pleasantly surprised and confused.

  172. Kooshy says:

    TTG, what better Modle for “medical care for all” plan that the already existing, tested Medicare. One would think, we already have a well drawn, working medical coverage plan for our seniors, whom demography although smaller, have more need for medical care and more costly care then the lager younger segment of population. Pepole wonder how is it that we can provide basic health care to our older more costly segment of our citizens but can’t do the same for our younger and working middle age citizens?

  173. Cee says:

    When I was about eight and on a trip to NY I picked that out at a museum store to hang in my bedroom. My mother was freaked out. My Dad overruled her.

  174. Cee says:

    I had to tell a relative she wouldn’t be protesting on behalf of this Black woman
    Many women were demeaned by the purge of voters from the polls in Brooklyn by a Clinton partisan. That will be investigated.
    I’ve noticed that HRC isn’t boycotting because she’s probably terrified of further scrutiny.
    Other women in Haiti were financially defrauded.
    I also take the ill-treament of Sanders personally.
    I do hope you get some satisfaction from this. I’m satisfied that she lost and we will live to see another day.
    Be safe protesting.

  175. Cee says:

    Probably not. Nor that she also spoke of privitizing Social Security. Screw the elderly women who don’t have foundation cash to cushion their ample backsides.

  176. Cee says:

    The Beaver,
    I couldn’t stop laughing when I read that the other day. Now we just have to wait for their revenge and call them out on it.

  177. Cee says:

    And he wants cheaper medication imported!! At least Cory Booker won’t stand a chance of being POTUS after he voted against it and lied about why.
    Someone wrote that he buried his future aspirations in his childhood backyard along with his long dead goldfish. LOL!

  178. Cee says:

    But Bernie will.
    He said he would do everything to cooperate with Donald Trump to better the nation and he’s not boycotting the inaugural events

  179. Phil Cattar says:

    She may have been born in the US to Australians who were in Hawaii temporarily as students but she was raised in Australia and culturally is Australian.Australia certainly considers her Australian..She considers herself Australian …………………As I type Chinese women are coming to the US 8 months pregnant and having their babies in the US.They then fly back to China with their “American ” child to be raised in China.They want an American citizen in their family as a security blanket………………The child is legally an American citizen.Everything else about the child is Chinese.His ideas ,his habits.etc etc…will all be influenced by his parents and Chinese milieu he grows up in…………..His Weltanschauung will not be influenced because he was born in Los Angles.

  180. charly says:

    With summer weather that is absolutely correct but mid January in Washington dc?

  181. Cee says:

    Let me add more to the story about how HRC doesn’t give a damn about women
    suspended-Chief Clerk Diane Haslett-Rudiano was accused in April 2016 of kicking out more than a 100,000 active voters while reportedly doing a routine update to eliminate dead people and those who had moved away.

  182. Cee says:

    I’m willing to wait it out to see what Trump does.
    I’ve seen what HRC HAS DONE. NO MORE!!

  183. Cee says:

    Obama used ICE to deport more people than Bush. Upset then?
    Did you know that many of them were sent to Honduras and were killed by drug dealers and people in organized crime after HRC helped to undermine the government? Where was your outrage?
    Really. How did did you feel?

  184. alba etie says:

    No we subsidized the sickest who are not employed with some of the $ 19 million dollars the CEO of Mylan made last year by ripping us off .
    We are already rationing Healthcare by this rigged systems that favors the Insurers !

  185. Farooq says:

    You win the trophy of coming up with the most disgusting comment on SST i have ever read. You can take a slimy middle eastern out of middle east(or as in your case, kicked out of ME for treasonous nature of your forefathers) but you cant take the misogynist sliminess out of m.e turds.
    Col, i am guessing replying to such haramis on your blog in the language they understand gets me the ban?

  186. Jack says:

    I understand where you’re coming from about Manning since you were on the ground. However, in defense of Manning at least he/she accepted responsibility, was duly punished, and served 7 years in prison including I believe a year in solitary. Compare that to Petraeus who disclosed even higher classified information to his mistress and got away with a slap on his wrist and landed a super high paying private equity job. If his ass was in solitary for a year I can understand being even more harsh with Manning. If we are to make examples of people we need to do it with those high up on the totem pole. In contemporary America the full force of the law only applies to us peons. Guys like Clapper and Alexander skate for lying under oath and blatantly violating the spirit of the Constitution. BTW, I fully support leaking of the truth when it comes to the malfeasance of the elites. We need more transparency not less and when government and the financial elite hide their misdeeds under secrecy laws then sunshine only comes from patriots breaking the secrecy law.

  187. Imagine says:

    Sorry? Congress pays Israel billions in taxpayer money each year every year, Israel and its oligarchs pay AIPAC close to $100M a year, AIPAC then spends around $75M a year on support for basically all Representatives and Senators, laundered through various PACs, in an unbreakable perpetual iron triangle of corruption. Sen. Tom Cotton alone got at least $2M. As a result, both the House and the Senate typically vote close to 100% for Israeli interests (cf. Sen.Res.65). And you wonder why Bibi can speak before Congress at will, even without Obama’s permission, and why he gets more standing ovations than Obama. None of this should be news. It does help if you step back and see the self-sustaining system as a whole.
    At least it’s been stable, and Israel (to my knowledge) has never threatened to use their nukes since the invasion of Egypt in ’67. so do what works…

  188. Phil Cattar says:

    Trump is the human equivalent of the animal kingdom’s Duck-billed Platypus.He simply cannot be easily defined ,categorized or understood……………….Stand by.

  189. Edward Amame says:

    Eric Newhill
    So you don’t like Krugman. You still didn’t refute his basic description of the ACA’s essential parts.
    Yes the ACA has problems. One of them is that the penalties for not signing up are not high enough, hence a lot of young healthy kids didn’t and that raises costs.
    A substantial majority of ACA users get very affordable insurance thanks to the ACA. Yes, another problem is that upper middle-class families don’t qualify for subsidies.
    Neither of these problems seem insurmountable.

  190. Ken Roberts says:

    Since it’s an open thread, I would appreciate hearing the thoughts of others, esp. outside Cdn domestic matters, on the topic of Canada’s new minister of foreign affairs, Chrystia Freeland.
    With reference to John Helmer’s recent article re her background, at
    But also with reference to her conduct since becoming minister.
    My take, for what it’s worth (very little!) …
    A ministerial role is an office, part of team both in cabinet and with dept of civil servants and departmental function. Minister must set aside, or at least back-burner, stances that may have been relevant to constituencies that got one elected.

  191. Eric Newhill says:

    EA – Maybe healthy young people just don’t feel the need to make a personal sacrifice in order to further your glorious communist revolution.
    What part of “Premiums are too high” are you not willing to, or capable of, understanding? Unlike you, I actually know what people are paying in premiums. Looking back on my healthy 25 – 30 year old self, there is no way I would pay for insurance – especially at that cost. In fact, there were periods in my younger self’s life when I did not have insurance and didn’t give a damn about that.

  192. Origin says:

    “The biggest issue in US health care is cost. That is the elephant in the room that no one wants to discuss let alone address. The focus is exclusively about coverage.”
    Yes, it is about coverage and cost. When guys like Price speak of seeking competition in the health insurance industry, they are deceiving you because there can be no competition within a monopolistic economy. How much chance is there for Blue-Cross Alabama to compete with Blue-Cross South Carolina when both are owned by the same parent company. What the Obamacare-Medicare “reforms” are all about is steering all the money the nation spends on healthcare through the toll booths of the handful of monopolist health and insurance companies controlled by no more than twenty families. “Privatize” Medicare and the VA with “vouchers” for “private” insurance simply forces more people to rely on the monopolists that now control the health industry.
    What that means is the people in Congress, some of the Democrats and most of the Republicans, are in service of a legal heist of trillions of dollars of profits to the handful of families who own the monopolies that should be spent on the citizens’ healthcare.
    The whole thing is simply theater for the gullible Americans.
    Until we see anti-trust discussions start, it is all just a heist.
    Free market capitalism works just is supposed to — it goes to concentration until it no longer works; then it collapses. We are nearly there. In the meantime, they will make sure you die if you get sick, especially if you are old and the gini coefficient will rise steeply.

  193. Edward Amame says:

    Eric Newhill
    Glorious Communist Revolution? Gotcha. I was gonna ask how else to get health insurance in the USA if you’re self employed and/or have a precondition. Don’t bother.

  194. Edward Amame says:

    I’d heard about this. Thanks for the link. Sorta like “Government get your hands off my Medicare!”

  195. Eric Newhill says:

    All the money of all the CEOs in the country would not pay for one year of full coverage for everyone who sick. $19mil is chicken feed. Chump change.
    Having demonstrated your complete lack of seriousness, I suppose it would be wasted on you to mention the old problem with socialism; sooner or later you run out of other people’s money – in this case sooner.
    Thank God the party that panders to people of your mindset lost the election and we get a businessman that understands numbers and finances.

  196. Eric Newhill says:

    Most Blue Cross plans are completely independent companies. It’s just a name they buy and, sometimes, for a few extra bucks they get access to some bigger data. There is no rate setting collusion between Blues plans.
    There is no monopoly on premiums, contracts or any of that. Where do you people come up with this stuff?
    Yes, competition works. It causes plans to offer the lowest cost premium possible + a mix of benefits that appeals to consumers and gets them business as opposed to the other guys. No trusts. No monopolies.
    Interesting because universal healthcare administered by the federal govt would be a monopoly. The incentive to keep costs down would be what exactly? About the same as it is for a cost effective fighter jet?
    As I have already said, 1/3 of people receiving Medicare today are getting through privately administered Medicare Advantage plans and it’s working very well, thank you.
    A real and interesting trend has emerged on this thread that explains a lot. The socialists have no idea what they’re talking about and are full of all kinds of anti-capitalist fantasies.

  197. Eric Newhill says:

    Why can’t the small business owner buy insurance without the ACA? As far as I know, they have been for as long as I’ve been in the business. Or do you mean failing small businesses?
    Pre-existing conditions did not exclude one from purchasing insurance pre-ACA. That is a falsehood I often hear repeated as gospel. There would just be no treatment paid for by the insurance company on the condition for a period of time (often 6 months, sometimes one year). Life is full of challenges and financial set-backs. One should save for those times. Or one can get treatment for the pre-existing condition on credit and pay it off over time.
    What if you lost your job and couldn’t pay your mortgage or car loan? What if you couldn’t afford to eat? Should we have wealth transfer programs for these things too? After all, food is even more fundamental than healthcare.
    What about people who choose to not work at full potential and want insurance? Why should young people just starting out in life that are trying and working pay for these people? Is that fair and just to your mind (since you think in terms of fairness)? Why should young healthy people subsidize older sick people?
    How many people do think actually fall into your poster child category of pre-existing condition and can’t get care? Do you have any idea of what all the excitement is all about? What the scope and scale of the matter is?
    What role, to your mind, does individual responsibility play here (if any)?

  198. Cee says:

    Pepper spray was used last night Only coverage was RT.

  199. Eric Newhill says:

    Interesting theory, but I’m not so sure. What I’m seeing in this thread is that our liberals are protesting the hallucinations and delusions in their heads that they project are coming from external reality.
    When it comes to the healthcare system, which I know really well inside and out, it is clear that they are horribly misinformed. I suspect that they are equally so in other areas that are causing them excessive hyper-ventilation, but that I don’t know as well.
    These are not differences of opinion. Rather, ignorance of material points and pertinent facts. Yet they rage on.

  200. Eric Newhill says:

    EA, Looking at what I wrote, I should have further explained, re; premiums, that the low income people you want to “save” already had Medicaid, CHiPS, Family Health +, etc. Truly disabled people of any age are already on Medicare.
    So the number of people that are signing up for the ACA that qualify for substantial subsidies is smaller than you think.
    Here’s another issue to add to your list. People sign up on Jan 1. They go do their taxes in Feb. Then they drop their insurance. Between Jan and tax filing they incur a bunch of expensive medical care that they’ve been holding off on. Some of these people don’t even pay their premium because there is a 30 grace period.
    Bottom line, EA, is that insurance companies are losing money. Many have dropped out for that reason.

  201. Cee says:

    Col. Lang,
    I’m getting a good laugh about all who are protesting and those who are criticized for meeting with Trump except HRC!!

  202. Cee says:

    Yes. Follow the money. Where is Eric Braverman?

  203. Tidewater says:

    Tidewater says,
    In a bar in Bogota? That guy was crazy. There is a book about Columbia that will tell you all you need to know about that place. This is “The Fruit Palace” by Charles Nicholl. It is not a travel book. It is a book about an enthusiastic young British guy who has decided to find out all he can about the cocaine industry at the source…

  204. Akira says:

    The”UKRAINE ON FIRE” documentary by Oliver Stone is finally available in English! (sort of)
    Thanks Vlædimør

  205. Edward Amame says:

    Eric Newhill
    “Defunding” Planned Parenthood means that low income people’s Medicaid coverage can not be used for ANY health care provided at a Planned Parenthood clinic, including birth control, cancer screenings, etc.
    The GOP plan to privatize Medicare involves issuing vouchers so that seniors can buy plans from private insurers. However, Medicare was created because too many seniors were going uninsured because private insurance companies didn’t want seniors as customers. So they charged old people 5 or more times as much as younger people for the same policies and refused to sell any coverage at all to people with preexisting conditions. Suggesting that we can all let go any concerns over privatization seems pretty cavalier to me.
    As far as Soc Sec goes, it’s one of the most popular, best run gov’t programs we have. The only reasons to privatize it are ideological.

  206. Edward Amame says:

    Nancy K
    Of Trumpcare will cost as soon as it’s determined that everyone with preexisting conditions can get coverage. It cannot work without everyone getting in the pool, young and old, healthy and not healthy. And then subsidies will be needed for those who can’t afford it.

  207. Eric Newhill says:

    Old people are charged more than young people because they cost a lot more than young people. Healthcare costs begin to increase sharply after 40 years of age. That’s why private companies charged more.
    So what is your game now? I interject the fact that 1/3 of people on Medicare quite successfully get it through private companies (i.e. Medicare Advantage) and then you come back with a new angle on why it’s bad; the notion that seniors will get vouchers that won’t be sufficiently large enough to pay for insurance.
    It all depends on how fat the vouchers are, doesn’t it? It also depends on what laws are instituted. I see no reason that the vouchers couldn’t = equal the payment to Medicare Advantage plans.
    Look, there is no way that 1. the doctors, hospitals and other purveyors of health service and goods are going to allow seniors to go without insurance. Seniors are the biggest consumers. How will they consume with no insurance/no money? 2. The republican party would be finished if they left seniors without coverage. As the baby boomers age there is a bigger need than ever for insurance and they are a huge voting block. These people paid in and they want what was promised. Medicare is not going to go away and leave them high and dry.
    Take a deep breath. Put down the Krugman, Mother Jones and whatever other hyterical leftist propaganda is upsetting you. It’s not good for your health.

  208. The recent withdrawal of two of the Service Secretaries from the confirmation process may have been because of the prohibitions of the Dual Compensation Act of 1947.

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