"This Is Not A Great Bill"

So says Ezra Klein about the health bill.

Should it be passed? Ezra says yes. I need to see the final product before I can make such a judgment.

This is an Open Thread.

< Tha MA Mandate And The Medicaid Buy-In | Nelson's Pound Of Flesh: Stupak AND No Medicaid Expansion >
  • The Online Magazine with Liberal coverage of crime-related political and injustice news

  • Contribute To TalkLeft

  • Display: Sort:
    Truthfully, I'm not sure anything will pass (5.00 / 1) (#2)
    by andgarden on Thu Dec 17, 2009 at 05:28:44 PM EST
    Before Holy Joe got his concessions, I thought there was a better than even chance. Now, the whole thing is reopened.

    I'm not sure I see (5.00 / 5) (#10)
    by andgarden on Thu Dec 17, 2009 at 05:51:44 PM EST
    the path the needle can thread through. If there is one, I agree that at this point I'm not sure I want to see it. Each "compromise" is worse than the one before.

    In other words, how to negotiate like a Democrat.

    Keep fu¢k*ng that chicken!


    Excellent article on (5.00 / 3) (#3)
    by Andy08 on Thu Dec 17, 2009 at 05:33:06 PM EST
    the disgraceful  "Excise Tax" .... From  The Atlantic (Business)
    Who Will Be Paying the "Cadillac Tax"?
    The excise tax on high cost health care plans has dubbed them "Cadillac" plans, a choice that was always a little puzzling.  The primary demographic for Cadillacs is on Medicare, not Goldman's payroll.  And one of the main targets of the tax is the union members who form a core part of the Democratic base.  The notion that these people are grotesquely overpaid freeloaders is usually a Republican talking point.

    (it continues; read the whole article; it's very good).

     No way I am supporting a bill coming from anyone who thought paying it with such a tax on the middle class/union/blue collar workers was "fair" game.  Don't care what it does I know I will be paying this not just with money but with my own health.

    Thanks (5.00 / 3) (#20)
    by standingup on Thu Dec 17, 2009 at 07:12:42 PM EST
    The more I read about the Senate's excise tax, the worse it sounds. And as for Ezra (and a few others) suggestion that employers are going to cut employee benefits and pass those savings down to the employees as wages instead:
    One argument that some have made in favor of the excise tax is that employers cutting benefits would return the savings to employees in the form of higher wages. However, less than a fifth of respondents (16 percent) say they would convert their cost savings into higher pay. [from Mercer Consulting's November survey of 465 employers]

    Whoever says (5.00 / 3) (#48)
    by Andy08 on Thu Dec 17, 2009 at 10:14:50 PM EST
    the cuts in benefits will "trickle down" to employees as "raises"
    is smoking some strong pot and being somewhere between delusional and dishonest; or both.  What I can't believe is these arguments being made by "Democrats".... This tax is indefensible.

    A pot head... (none / 0) (#58)
    by kdog on Fri Dec 18, 2009 at 07:45:48 AM EST
    wouldn't be able to say such a thing without cracking up laughing...they could be hitting the sauce hard though:)

    I'm wondering what will happen to me as (5.00 / 1) (#56)
    by suzieg on Fri Dec 18, 2009 at 03:46:51 AM EST
    a cancer survivor covered by my state health insurance risk pool paying $1,480 monthly in premiums - I have a sick feeling that the state will discontinue offering health insurance and I will be thrown into a lousy gov't run plan.

    Hopefully you will be supplied with (none / 0) (#57)
    by Militarytracy on Fri Dec 18, 2009 at 07:37:35 AM EST
    something that provides you with great care.  Nobody can promise such a thing though at this time.  There is very little standardization of care for all that comes with this that I have found so far.

    "Not a great bill"... (5.00 / 1) (#4)
    by kdog on Thu Dec 17, 2009 at 05:40:32 PM EST
    no sh*t, the question is, is it a bad bill?

    Know what else ain't great...sitting in a cage for 5 years waiting for trial, and a jury of your peers takes all of two hours to say "not guilty".

    So much for that speedy trial business, quaint as the Geneva Convention I guess.

    an open thread (5.00 / 1) (#7)
    by Maryb2004 on Thu Dec 17, 2009 at 05:44:36 PM EST
    and everyone is still talking about healthcare?

    I'm beginning to wish we could go back to football.

    btw - did you football fan lawyers see this motion to continue filed by an Alabama fan?

    God....save us from Alabama football (none / 0) (#21)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Dec 17, 2009 at 07:17:47 PM EST
    The "other great team of this state" mentioned too, using that exact wording :)  This lawyer sounds like he is fine with the fact that I named my dog so incorrectly that she is for both teams.

    MT, how you keep up (none / 0) (#49)
    by gyrfalcon on Fri Dec 18, 2009 at 12:23:00 AM EST
    your good nature, high spirits and funny wit is beyond me.  Long may you wave!  I love reading your posts.

    STFU (5.00 / 4) (#9)
    by lilburro on Thu Dec 17, 2009 at 05:50:49 PM EST
    Would public insurance be better? It would. I'd be happier arguing for it right now. But that's not the choice before us.

    In part because people like Ezra slagged public options in order to inflate the President.   arrghhh...

    STFU directed to EK (none / 0) (#11)
    by lilburro on Thu Dec 17, 2009 at 05:51:47 PM EST
    to clarify...assuming these comments aren't deleted.

    I had a sniffly teary day (5.00 / 5) (#12)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Dec 17, 2009 at 06:17:41 PM EST
    Joshua finally went to school today for half a day.  I finally got to Christmas shop for him.  He has asked for Owl City.  He hates anesthesia, it scares him.  So as we traveled I-10 we talked about the miracles that have kept him with us but we talked about the scary stuff too.  And whenever Owl City came on singing 'Fireflies' we tried to sing along and we hunted for it as the towns and radio stations flew by. I got teary eyed standing in line today to buy him the C.D.  He's growing up, and music is so much about who we are as individuals since we have so much that we can choose from.  I stopped at Taco Bell for a snack afterwards.  I never used to use Taco Bell Hot sauce until I began dating my spouse.  There are stripes of Hot and Fire sauce all over everything he eats there and he packs the stuff home and puts it on everything at home too.  So I grabbed some Hot and sat down, went to open a packet and the saying on the front said, "Will you marry me?"  I teared up again and put it in my pocket to send to him in the next care package.

    Oh, Militarytracy, (5.00 / 2) (#13)
    by Zorba on Thu Dec 17, 2009 at 06:28:56 PM EST
    This brought a tear to my eyes, as well.  Joshua is going through so much, and you are, too, because you're with him every step of the way.  I don't know how you do it, with all the problems your son has and your husband overseas.  You are my hero, lady.

    That song makes me cry (5.00 / 2) (#14)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Dec 17, 2009 at 06:41:09 PM EST
    in the context of what Josh goes through.  I don't think I'm any more heroic than most of the other parents who do this with me that I meet.  It certainly changes you.  I always thought I was a pretty tough soul when I was younger, then I found out that I could have the stuffing easily knocked out of me, and then I even managed to survive and grow beyond that. One of the girls that went with Josh this time, her dad is an aviation mechanic nicknamed Sparky.  They make enough to get by, not much more and not much less. They live in 8 acres in Ohio, and he spends the rest of his time doing good things for other people when he can.  The man is infectious too!

    Don't ever doubt (5.00 / 1) (#15)
    by Zorba on Thu Dec 17, 2009 at 06:48:54 PM EST
    that you're tough.  I know that you have to be.  The stuffing gets knocked out of you on a regular basis, and yet you keep on.

    It isn't really about heroic (5.00 / 4) (#23)
    by Inspector Gadget on Thu Dec 17, 2009 at 07:30:43 PM EST
    It's all in the context of your ability to love so deeply. Similar to stories you hear about mom's lifting cars to get a child out from underneath. It's about your ability to recognize the incredible gift that Josh is, and to appreciate and cherish that you are the recipient. To be the rock for him is its own reward. It's about emotions that are nearly impossible to find proper words to describe.

    Exactly! (5.00 / 4) (#26)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Dec 17, 2009 at 07:35:05 PM EST
    It is living close to the bone.  And that is where all the marrow is.

    Here's the video of (none / 0) (#16)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Dec 17, 2009 at 06:49:24 PM EST
    Fireflies on Youtube.

    Jeez, MT, now I'm sniffly & teary (5.00 / 2) (#22)
    by caseyOR on Thu Dec 17, 2009 at 07:22:27 PM EST
    Have a good cry, kiddo. You've got so much going on what with Josh's surgery and Mr.MT being in a war zone and having to make decisions about, fer gawd sake, amputating your son's feet. And it's Christmas.

    I read these posts of yours and I want to just give you a big hug, fix you a drink and cook you a tasty and nourishing dinner. Since that isn't possible, at least until I master teleportation, I'll send good thoughts your way.


    Oh.....I so need someone to cook for me (none / 0) (#24)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Dec 17, 2009 at 07:30:54 PM EST
    I'll fix both of us a good drink :)  Charleston is going to be fun at Christmas.  I'm getting Josh and I a swanky hotel room.  Then we'll hit his sisters house and wake those sleepy heads up.  When I picked him up at school we went to get stocking stuffers and he took off on his own for bit and shows up with a wand for Zoey because we call her Tinkerbell :)

    Not to be nosey, but (5.00 / 1) (#28)
    by coast on Thu Dec 17, 2009 at 08:05:29 PM EST
    Charleston, SC?  If so, I hope you have a wonderful visit to the Holy City.

    Well, if a wonk says it's not a great bill (5.00 / 1) (#18)
    by Dan the Man on Thu Dec 17, 2009 at 07:06:30 PM EST
    I have to believe him.

    Puget Sounders.... (5.00 / 0) (#45)
    by Inspector Gadget on Thu Dec 17, 2009 at 08:59:37 PM EST
    Not noticing any of the locals commenting this evening, but will mention this in case they check TL after I've closed my computer down for the day.

    If you haven't gone to Snowflake Lane at Bellevue Square yet, it's really worth the time to get there.

    The entire city is decked out in festive lighting, and the new Bravern Center is wrapped in a giant blue bow.

    Every night until Christmas, at 7:00 PM all the live tin soldiers appear on the sidewalks outside the Square between NE 8th and NE 6th. Many are on stilts so they tower over the crowds, others take their places atop the big holiday drums that line the street, and still others walk through the crowds -- all playing wonderful holiday music. There are penquins, polar bear and snow princesses mixed in to get everyone dancing.

    My 86 year old dad had a delightful dance with a penguin and an evening that took his mind off being alone this season even though only for a little while.

    It is so worth it! Then, wander across 405 to Bellevue Botanical Gardens where they have created a magical flower garden all out of lights.

    I love Bellevue.

    I guess Ezra can add to his (5.00 / 1) (#46)
    by Anne on Thu Dec 17, 2009 at 09:01:31 PM EST
    List of Impressive Titles: Master Of The Obvious!

    And at such a young age...

    I heard little Ezra on the radio this morning (none / 0) (#52)
    by shoephone on Fri Dec 18, 2009 at 12:53:44 AM EST
    He did his talking head routine on Warren Olney's "To the Point." Spent most of his time $hitting on the public option and telling the good listeners how silly and stupid we are if we don't support the bend-over-and-take-it Senate bill.

    He was an embarassment to 12-year old boys everywhere.


    LOL (none / 0) (#59)
    by DFLer on Fri Dec 18, 2009 at 10:35:51 AM EST
    but how do you really about him?

    Who knows, is right (none / 0) (#1)
    by MKS on Thu Dec 17, 2009 at 05:25:26 PM EST
    And I guess the next question will be, who cares?  

    Will there be anythihng left of worth....It is hard to follow with things changing so quickly....

    Re-post (none / 0) (#5)
    by CST on Thu Dec 17, 2009 at 05:43:50 PM EST
    from earlier thread.

    Iraqi insurgents have hacked into our video feeds from the predator drones.  How long before someone figures out how to control them?

    Even still, this kind of defeats the purpose of the drones.  The people who are least likely to escape are the ones who aren't "in the know".

    As in, civilians...

    Drones... (none / 0) (#8)
    by kdog on Thu Dec 17, 2009 at 05:50:27 PM EST
    are one of the most heinous gadgets we've ever come up with...I am somewhat relieved they can be hacked so easily.

    Wow, count me as impressed (none / 0) (#19)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Dec 17, 2009 at 07:11:16 PM EST
    Last night my husband told me not expect a phone call from him tonight because they have issues with some phones and stuff.  Yup honey, you guys have some issues to secure :)

    Speaking of calling home (none / 0) (#25)
    by Inspector Gadget on Thu Dec 17, 2009 at 07:33:38 PM EST
    MT, I received an envelope in the mail from a group that takes up to 3 old cell phones per envelope. From these phones (I have no idea what they do to convert them) they get calling cards for the troops in Iraq and Afghanistan to use to call home.

    So, the troops have to use calling cards?


    That was begun by a couple of kids (5.00 / 1) (#32)
    by Cream City on Thu Dec 17, 2009 at 08:14:20 PM EST
    I remember reading about it -- a brother and sister, 10 to 12 years old, as I recall, who decided to take some money they got as a gift to give it instead to a good cause for the troops.  They ended up starting their own good cause, called Cell Phones for Soldiers -- if you want to see if the contact you got was legit, as that group has been vetted and apparently does do a lot of good.  More about it is on Wikipedia, in many news stories, etc., and its own site is on the web, too.

    I.e., I don't that this group is a scam (none / 0) (#33)
    by Cream City on Thu Dec 17, 2009 at 08:15:08 PM EST
    so MT's comment suggests that there may be others not on the up and up.

    I think MT meant they managed to (none / 0) (#36)
    by Inspector Gadget on Thu Dec 17, 2009 at 08:21:20 PM EST
    corner a market on calling cards.

    The people raising money to pay (none / 0) (#37)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Dec 17, 2009 at 08:21:55 PM EST
    for the calling cards aren't a scam.  This is what is a scam though Cream City....that when our troops pull in someplace a bunch of phones are put in place literally on their heels that require phone cards to call home.  Who is making that money and why?  My spouse has access to a different phone but he is in a strange place too.  The grunts on the ground get pointed to the nearest morale phones whenever they pull in someplace where they can call home.  My Vonage costs me how much a month?  A lot of military families call it a scam but we are all too busy to throw a giant fit and get to the bottom of it.  We just suck it up and nice people buy soldiers calling cards :)

    Now, why do I have the suspicion (5.00 / 2) (#39)
    by Cream City on Thu Dec 17, 2009 at 08:39:14 PM EST
    that the mobile vans full of phones must be supplied by Haliburton?  With profits to Dick Cheney? :-)

    Skype is less than $5. a month (none / 0) (#40)
    by Inspector Gadget on Thu Dec 17, 2009 at 08:40:36 PM EST
    and you can see the person you're talking to if both ends of the conversation have cameras on the computers.

    Yes, there has to be a much more cost (none / 0) (#42)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Dec 17, 2009 at 08:50:21 PM EST
    effective ways to do this.  But nobody puts their foot down or fights for it, or at least they haven't so far.  You can Skype in some places but the internet access is very hard to get a turn at if you are exhausted and just want to phone home before you go hit the hay.  The military doesn't really want communications they aren't fully monitoring going out too and I guess they have this set up with AT&T.  My spouse told me they do everything they can to monitor the "internet cafes" available, but the need to do that so thoroughly means that a lot of access is denied.

    Ewwww, looks like it's AT&T (none / 0) (#41)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Dec 17, 2009 at 08:44:34 PM EST
    ripping us all to high heaven again at outposts in the middle of no place.  You can do VOIP but you have to be someplace where there is internet access and then what is available is usually very crowded and hard to get a chance to use.  I sent my husband a used SAT phone I bought off of Ebay on his first tour in Iraq and that was a waste of money because do you think that the military is going to have SAT access available that they don't control?  They have the ability to jam and shut down all SAT access and cell phones in areas whenever they want to or need to.  It was funny though, live and learn.

    Yup (none / 0) (#29)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Dec 17, 2009 at 08:05:38 PM EST
    I don't understand exactly who runs this scam.  There is a ummmm different phone line my husband can use sometimes under some circumstances.  When he uses a morale phone he must use a phone card, and then it automatically hangs up on you after about 20 mins no matter what.  I don't know what that's about either.

    Oh yeah (none / 0) (#30)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Dec 17, 2009 at 08:07:56 PM EST
    and your phone call is monitored.  So you pay to have people record and listen to your private life and business.  Amazing huh?

    Odd way for the gov't to say "thanks" to (none / 0) (#35)
    by Inspector Gadget on Thu Dec 17, 2009 at 08:20:20 PM EST
    the troops. Then, I remember the odd censorship used in the movie "Good Morning, Viet Nam"...must have been more fact than fiction.

    So, I should go ahead and mail in these phones!


    Sure, it will help someone (none / 0) (#38)
    by Militarytracy on Thu Dec 17, 2009 at 08:25:33 PM EST
    You would think that for maybe $24.00 a month  our soldiers could make unlimited calls or something like that though :)  One of these days I'm going to get to the bottom of this :)

    colts (none / 0) (#17)
    by jharp on Thu Dec 17, 2009 at 07:05:47 PM EST

    Tonight is my Four Star pick of the year.

    Jacksonville +3 1/2 at home vs. the Colts.

    To me the Colts would have had all they could handle as a road favorite on National T.V. Toss in the Colts have nothing to gain playoff wise. And I figure if the Colts get behind it's coast time.

    Another angle. If Jacksonville can score a touchdown, (likely). The Colts need to score two. On the road. With a thunderous crowd.

    By the way, my son and I are huge Colt's fans. Peyton Manning is unbelievable.

    Here's hoping (none / 0) (#54)
    by CoralGables on Fri Dec 18, 2009 at 01:31:11 AM EST
    you have a Five Star pick of the year to get even.

    Colts (none / 0) (#55)
    by jharp on Fri Dec 18, 2009 at 03:21:57 AM EST
    I think I'll lay low with my predictions for a time. I wouldn't call it a horrible pick though, it could even be called a tough loss.

    And not a bad one to lose. My son and I have had a ball following the Colts and traveling the 15 minutes downtown to take in a game. It's a really sweet deal here.

    Who knows? 16-0?


    Agreed (none / 0) (#62)
    by CoralGables on Fri Dec 18, 2009 at 12:08:36 PM EST
    You were in the hunt the entire game with that pick while going against an undefeated.

    What?? (none / 0) (#51)
    by gyrfalcon on Fri Dec 18, 2009 at 12:27:37 AM EST

    What's really infuriating ... (none / 0) (#53)
    by FreakyBeaky on Fri Dec 18, 2009 at 01:08:02 AM EST
    ... is that the House, over the Administration's and their Blue Dog allies' resistance, passed a half-decent bill, at least minus Stupak.  In the Senate, if it worked by majority rule, the majority of Senate Democrats would also have passed a half-decent bill, almost certainly without Stupak.  But Obama and his little helpers, Lieberman and Nelson and a couple of others, used the filibuster to strip out the most popular and sensible provisions, restrict choice, and generally bend the majority of the Congress, the people, and their own party over a chair.  

    Congratulations, Obama and ConservaDems.  Though outnumbered, on the wrong side of public opinion, and wrong on the policy, you got the bill Obama wanted.  Well played, you miserable bastards.

    In weird unexplainable news... (none / 0) (#60)
    by CST on Fri Dec 18, 2009 at 10:46:45 AM EST
    Someone has stolen the "Arbeit Macht Frei" (work sets you free) sign from the entrance to Auschwitz.

    Not sure why anyone would want this.

    I ran into the Army Times yesterday shopping (none / 0) (#61)
    by Militarytracy on Fri Dec 18, 2009 at 10:52:16 AM EST
    but did not buy it.  It did say that 3 BCTs and thousands of enablers were deploying for the Afghan surge.  Do they have to call it a surge?  I get Bush rash calling it that.  Do we have to be enablers?  In the 80's that was a bad thing to be.