Compromise on Contraception: Insurance Cos. Pay

President Obama's announced accommodation" looks ok to me - women get the contraceptive coverage that good science and public policy require. The perceived need to offer a fig leaf to religions (the insurance companies pay) is grating, but the substance is what matters most.

Planned Parenthood and Catholic Health Association both approve. The bishops are formulating what their objections are. Surely having to pay for contraceptive coverage is not the problem.

Appeasing folks who will never support you seems a fool's errand to me, but I can't object in this case as the substance stays intact. As a larger issue of chasing fool's gold, well, my views on that are a matter of record.

< Friday Morning Open Thread | Judge Refuses to Sentence Najibullah Zazi's Father as Terrorist >
  • The Online Magazine with Liberal coverage of crime-related political and injustice news

  • Contribute To TalkLeft

  • Display: Sort:
    I agree on the substance (5.00 / 2) (#1)
    by ruffian on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 11:55:12 AM EST
    On for chasing fool's gold issue, this instance is especially grating since the people he is chasing are about 5% of the populace.  I guess it is instructive to see difference between how a tiny minority on the right is treated vs the same numbers on the left.

    a tiny minority on the right wearing (5.00 / 4) (#106)
    by TeresaInPa on Sat Feb 11, 2012 at 08:57:26 AM EST
    red beanies on their heads. The women whom they supposedly hold sway over, Catholic women use contraception and have abortions at the same rates as other women.  
    You know what women have lower rates of abortions?  Jewish women for whom abortion is permissible.
    These catholic bishops are just your average social conservative bully republican male in bishops clothing.  The people who should be fighting back publicly are catholic women.

    That's basically how I feel about it (5.00 / 1) (#2)
    by CST on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 11:55:44 AM EST
    I think my views about the Catholic Church hierarchy are fairly well known by this point.  It's an understatement to say I'm not a fan.

    But if the end result is women getting what they need, then I am fine with marginally "appeasing" them.  Whether they are actually appeased or not remains to be seen, but frankly, I think the more they continue to shout about this issue, the worse they look, and hopefully the less power they will ultimately have.  If you can compromise without giving anything up, I'll take it though.

    From the WH Fact Sheet: (5.00 / 0) (#13)
    by Anne on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 12:28:56 PM EST
    The new policy ensures women can get contraception without paying a co-pay and addresses important concerns raised by religious groups by ensuring that objecting religious employers will not have to provide contraceptive coverage or refer women to organizations that provide contraception. Background on this policy is included below:

    Section 2713 of the Affordable Care Act, the Administration adopted new guidelines that will require most private health plans to cover preventive services for women without charging a co-pay starting on August 1, 2012. These preventive services include well women visits, domestic violence screening, and contraception, and all were recommended to the Secretary of Health and Human Services by the independent Institute of Medicine of the National Academy of Science.

    Today, the Obama Administration will publish final rules in the Federal Register that:

    o Exempts churches, other houses of worship, and similar organizations from covering contraception on the basis of their religious objections.

    o Establishes a one year transition period for religious organizations while this policy is being implemented.

    The President will also announce that his Administration will propose and finalize a new regulation during this transition year to address the religious objections of the non-exempted religious organizations. The new regulation will require insurance companies to cover contraception if the non-exempted religious organization chooses not to. Under the policy:

    o Religious organizations will not have to provide contraceptive coverage or refer their employees to organizations that provide contraception.

    o Religious organizations will not be required to subsidize the cost of contraception.

    o Contraception coverage will be offered to women by their employers' insurance companies directly, with no role for religious employers who oppose contraception.

    o Insurance companies will be required to provide contraception coverage to these women free of charge.

    So, as I think I understand this, let's say I'm a female of child-bearing age who is employed in the Catholic school system, and the system currently offers health insurance - let's say it's through Cigna - that does not include any contraceptive coverage.  Under these new rules, Cigna will advise me or contact me - or something - to let me know that coverage is available at no cost to me, and if I choose to get that coverage, there will be no co-pay associated with the purchase of the contraception.  I guess I get a new card that shows the contraception coverage rider?  Or I get a separate card, to prevent my woman cooties from having any association with a Catholic Archdiocese?

    If I don't have to fill out any more forms, and it works as it is being advertised - great.

    If there is no pushback from the Catholic Church, and if this stands as is, it's the right result - all women, regardless of the religious beliefs of their employers, will have free access to contraception.

    I just hope the Church and all these loud-mouthed presidential candidates and Congressional leaders and conservative Christian bullies will STFU.

    We'll see, I guess.

    And if workers' privacy is respected (5.00 / 1) (#22)
    by Towanda on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 01:04:16 PM EST
    this may work -- but I have this suspicion that Catholic employers will have complete access to  lists of women employees who practice contraception (by prescription, because that was the way decades ago that Sanger finally got the AMA to agree to stop opposing an end to the laws against birth control -- that is, the AMA agreed because it meant more business for its members).  

    And that access could lead to actions against these employees.

    Of course, need it be noted that these employers will not have such easy access to know whether their male employees are practicing birth control?


    I ought to have noted (5.00 / 2) (#26)
    by Towanda on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 01:09:44 PM EST
    that there also is peril of invasion of privacy of women and girls who are not workers for these Catholic employers -- the wives and daughters covered under spouses' and parents' family plans.

    The lawyers here with knowledge of privacy laws may be able to give me reassurance on this.  But I'm imagining how this plays out in, say, a small town, where such information becomes gossip easily spread around town.


    thanks Anne for the recap (none / 0) (#20)
    by smott on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 12:57:11 PM EST
    I am coming to this story late. I would assume your insurance card would note the "rider" covg, though this doesn't quite fit the traditional definition of Rider.

    I'm more interested in how they define contraception - would Morning After pill be included?


    section 2731 - THE PROBLEM is (none / 0) (#107)
    by seabos84 on Sat Feb 11, 2012 at 08:57:44 AM EST
    HUNDREDS AND THOUSANDS of rules and regulations and laws and sections OF LAWYER-CRAP.

    THE PROBLEM is a system which can't or won't or don't look at all this LAWYER-CRAP and asks "WTF does this have to do with bandaids and aids and having kids and getting sick and getting old?"

    THE PROBLEM, as in education, is that the point of the mission is lost as all these highly paid elites can fight over who has the best suites and the best seats on the fracking Titanic.

    THE PROBLEM with some stereotypes is that there can be some truth buried in the stereotype, and when the right wingers attack community investment

    [ an attack they SHOULD do because they're aristocratic thieving elitist scum who want us all living as puddle drinking boot lickers]

    because anything good for the community is bad for thieving elites - you'd think that once in a while the PRO community people would in fact re-invent something and make it fracking work for us peee-ons!?

    Hey - my niece / daughter / sister / mom / aunt get get some medicine when she hires 10 LAWYERS to insure that section 2731 is adhered to ...!!

    What a great win for that upper middle cla$$ social set who make their livings shuffling paper!



    Fig leaf yes, but not for Obama... (5.00 / 3) (#29)
    by Addison on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 01:22:34 PM EST
    This wasn't about giving President Obama or the policy a fig leaf so much as it was about giving liberal or moderate Catholics a fig leaf so that they could support the president and the ACA. Case in point, the elderly "We Irish" men over at MSNBC. And already some Catholic groups have come out and said this answers their concerns. This was for them, and it is a great example of an effective compromise; it was an actual "compromise" for actual constructive purpose, not one of the 11th dimensional chess "compromises" where things are watered down 99.9% in exchange for zero votes.

    The Catholic Men at MSNBC (none / 0) (#32)
    by MKS on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 01:29:19 PM EST
    Was that interesting or what?

    Tweety, O'Donnell, Barnacle and Luke Russert were all freaked out over this.....


    They brought in Mark Shields, too! (none / 0) (#35)
    by Addison on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 01:30:42 PM EST
    OMG I can only imagine (none / 0) (#37)
    by ruffian on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 01:39:45 PM EST
    soooo glad I missed that. What would Peggy Noonan say?

    Sorry I missed Luke Russert, (none / 0) (#42)
    by KeysDan on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 01:56:44 PM EST
    I always look to him to know what to think.   Tweety and O'Donnell were "researching" the 28 states "exemptions", and Tweety was even nastier than usual--he wished more thought had gone into all of this.   Mark Shields did not have David Brooks to continually look over to, for assurances, but he did have Archbishop Doyle's mitre.

    Luke tweeted during Obama's (none / 0) (#47)
    by MKS on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 02:16:03 PM EST
    announcement that Obama was the one who made birth control a political football, and predicted Catholic women in the suburbs would take it out on Obama.

    Ah, you missed EJ Dionne too.


    What percentage (none / 0) (#53)
    by cal1942 on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 02:36:40 PM EST
    of sexually active Catholic women in the suburbs use contraceptives?

    I have a feeling that those Catholic women in the suburbs who do "take it out" on Obama wouldn't have voted for him even if he walked on water.


    A huge amount do (5.00 / 1) (#59)
    by ruffian on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 02:55:31 PM EST
    98% of Catholic women have used birth control the Church opposes.

    Women would take it out on him if he did NOT support access to contraception.


    asdf (none / 0) (#34)
    by Addison on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 01:30:27 PM EST
    (I'm pretty sure that's your point, as well, about what the fig leaf was meant to cover? Just adding my 2 cents and bringing up the MSNBC thing because that was the thing that was most grating to me).

    Bingo (none / 0) (#70)
    by gyrfalcon on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 03:28:02 PM EST
    Hit the nail on the head.

    So be it for now, good, fine, be done with it (5.00 / 0) (#33)
    by Dadler on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 01:29:32 PM EST
    But I object strenuously to this appeasement on the grounds that it offers organized (corporate really) religion a loophole on an issue for which other people, not being "sheep," aren't granted for their equally weighty issues.  It is discriminatory on its face.  But if I get my war waiver, I'll be a happy man.  I think, however, I may be waiting until I'm pushing up weeds.

    I Don't Like It (5.00 / 6) (#36)
    by ScottW714 on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 01:32:21 PM EST
    It ratifies the notion that religious beliefs trump public good policy.

    So the deal is OK today, but the precedent is religion can and will set policy regarding their employees when it suits them.

    The US government shouldn't be bowing down to religious groups on matters where good public policy conflicts with religious, I don't even know what this is, views maybe, it's not doctrine.

    Basically a bunch of old white male virgins in Italy are influencing woman's access to health care in the US if they work for certain medical institutions.

    I am tired of it, and I am glad that the end result is no difference, but damn, the US government is such chumps when it comes to the Catholic Church.  If they were a company, the whole lot of them would be in jail, not forcing their outdated views on women.

    Old and White, yeah... (5.00 / 3) (#40)
    by kdog on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 01:49:18 PM EST
    what makes you thing they're virgins? ;)

    Now (5.00 / 1) (#50)
    by CoralGables on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 02:32:35 PM EST
    kdog... Even the ones that aren't, you know they probably wouldn't have any need for contraceptives.

    oh no (5.00 / 2) (#108)
    by TeresaInPa on Sat Feb 11, 2012 at 09:17:18 AM EST
    don't let the young boys being molested scenario fool you.  Young women and girls are still the number one victims of sexual abuse by males, priest and non priest alike.  We just don't always see it as abuse, more as something she asked for or had coming. ....."but but but, how could I know she was 14, with the make up and the way she was dressed I thought she was 25".
      yeah, right

    It's hard for me to believe that (none / 0) (#140)
    by Militarytracy on Sat Feb 11, 2012 at 07:33:25 PM EST
    Newt Gingrich has EVER needed access to any sort of contraception.

    Celebate Work for You ? (5.00 / 1) (#73)
    by ScottW714 on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 03:58:26 PM EST
    Even if they aren't either, they certainly aren't proficient enough be dolling out proclamations about BC.  Well they can do that, but they shouldn't have any hand in US policy.

    One of these days, someone needs to start yanking their exempt status, because right now they have the luxury of not having government in their business while freely sticking their noses in the government's.  

    Make them decide, shut-up or pay-up.


    every time I see someone suggest (none / 0) (#110)
    by TeresaInPa on Sat Feb 11, 2012 at 10:17:44 AM EST
    that churches lose their tax exempt status I know they have no idea what they are really asking for.  What a nightmare.  Do you really want to go back to the middle ages in Europe?
    There is a separation of church and state not politics and religion.

    It's a tough one (none / 0) (#117)
    by sj on Sat Feb 11, 2012 at 11:47:24 AM EST
    that's for sure.  But it seems to me that the church is violating the conditions of its exempt status.

    How so?? (none / 0) (#118)
    by jimakaPPJ on Sat Feb 11, 2012 at 12:09:15 PM EST
    The church is not campaigning for any candidate, they are saying that the law violates church doctrine.

    Do you believe that the government should be able to shut down the church?


    meddling in politics is not (none / 0) (#121)
    by sj on Sat Feb 11, 2012 at 12:24:32 PM EST
    restricted to campaigning for a candidate.  Although the church has done that also.  

    And where on earth do you read that I might believe the government should be able to shut down the church?  Or is that you think assessing taxes on their considerable holdings would shut them down?


    Assessing taxes on many small (none / 0) (#128)
    by jimakaPPJ on Sat Feb 11, 2012 at 03:42:14 PM EST
    churches would absolutely put them down. Not so much the large congregations.

    And politics in the black churches has been a long tradition and a good thing in many cases.

    And if the government violates the doctrines of a church, do you believe that the church is supposed to just stand mutely by??

    As I have written.... I disagree with the Catholic Church's position. But, and this a big BUT.... It has every right in that position and when the government mandates that the church violates that doctrine then the government has violated the First Amendment.


    oy (none / 0) (#129)
    by sj on Sat Feb 11, 2012 at 03:56:23 PM EST
    Err... (none / 0) (#41)
    by kdog on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 01:49:50 PM EST
    s/b "makes you think".

    I think the unfortunate precedent was (5.00 / 5) (#49)
    by caseyOR on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 02:31:13 PM EST
    set when Obama caved to the bishops on abortion during the health insurance reform debate. They know that he will fold in the face of very little criticism from the Catholic Church.

    Just as Obama's failure to hold the line on abortion spawned this current fight over contraception, this fight will embolden the Church to go after women yet again as soon as the opportunity presents itself.

    And why anyone pays the least bit of attention to what the Catholic Church thinks about anything these days is beyond me. The bishops surrendered any claim to any moral high ground with their egregious and criminal behavior around priest pedophilia.

    Just as Obama's waffling and caving emboldened what was a moribund Republican Party, those same chicken-sh!t behaviors have revived a disgraced and disgraceful Catholic Church.

    Obama has given new life to two of the most woman-hating groups in the United States. Way to go, Obama.


    And you (5.00 / 2) (#67)
    by Ga6thDem on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 03:24:04 PM EST
    know what's strange? Only in Washington DC does anybody think that these people have any sway over their congregations. Every Catholic I know and the polls back this up use birth control and believe in birth control no matter how much the Catholic Church calls it a sin. The only people that these bishops influence are the 2% that are Santorum clones.

    The ""cave" as to abortion (none / 0) (#88)
    by christinep on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 05:41:31 PM EST
    was already there in the Hyde Amendment that preceded the Obama administration. Essentially, the ACA incorporated that.

    But, I take your point that the Bishops will continue to push.  That is why today really was more important from an arm-wrestling type perspective than might initially appear.  That is: Obama acted the reconciler, the reasonable man...a role he plays well; the groups on both sides (exclusive of the Bishops & the Repubs) almost immediately issued their supportive press releases. Impression & reality: Crisis ended...for now.  But, one thing is clear: Obama was pushed hard & he came out whole and more. That says something to old hands at strong-arm, the Bishops.  (Look at the upside!)


    huh? (5.00 / 1) (#114)
    by TeresaInPa on Sat Feb 11, 2012 at 10:35:22 AM EST
    there can only be one "cave"?  I don't think so.  Hyde was one, this is another.  But there have been so many.
    Obama caved every time he voted "present" on abortion legislation as a state senator, so that he could run for federal office.  He caved when he said that women shouldn't be able to get late term abortions because they "had a case of the blues" (he still gets a gigantic FU from me for that statement)ignoring that this is not at all what happens nor even legal. Oh there have been too many "caves" to mention.

    This is what Obama's caving in gets us, (none / 0) (#95)
    by caseyOR on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 06:44:57 PM EST
    a demand for even more caving. The more Obama gives in, the harder the other side pushes. Why? They have nothing to lose and so much to gain. They know, based on past experience, that, at least in domestic matters, Obama will always give in and give in and give in.

    Obama's new decision did nothing to appease either the bishops or the GOP. The bishops, and a large part of the religious right,  want birth control outlawed. No compromise, no matter how much of a hassle it causes women, will suffice. And the GOP has yet another issue, now cloaked in the language of "religious freedom" with which to beat Obama about the head and shoulders.

    Emboldened by this latest victory over Obama, Republican Roy Blunt (R-MO) plans to introduce a bill that would let anyone opt of any health care coverage if said coverage offended their conscience.

    This kind of cr@p is what we get from Obama's refusal to stand firm and his compulsive kowtowing to religious thugs.


    It is the general public (none / 0) (#96)
    by christinep on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 06:55:48 PM EST
    That is the final word.  I would say that the "all the people" was Obama's audience here (including Catholics in the owes.). Working out an acceptable result is often regarded highly in the broader world...in fact, what the public ultimately turns on is the constant "my way or the highway.".Obama understands that.  See status of the current Republican House on that point.  While the inherent power of the Bishops is  significant, it is not unlimited; yet, from the perspective of many traditional voters who vote Democratic Party, there is a tacit expectation that these Church authority figures be accorded some courtesy & respect...so the smart participant operates within that context in working out situations for the broader good.  That is why Obama's style here is a winner in the public's eye.

    You must not have been watching the (none / 0) (#97)
    by caseyOR on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 07:04:38 PM EST
    news today. Every news report I have seen has referred to this as "Obama backpedals" on contraception. Not a single commentator or reporter is calling this anything but a cave to the bishops and the GOP. No one seems to think that Obama has won anything with this move. He is perceived as engaging in damage control, not in political finesse.

    I've watched all the news programs (none / 0) (#99)
    by christinep on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 09:01:24 PM EST
    The most "negative" term is "shifts.". What I have seen is a parade of support from women's groups & health groups as well as fro  the lay Catholic  groups (and the very key Catholic Hospital Association)...all supportive.  Ane, what I also saw on the e ening news is Cardinal-Designate Dolan, head of the Catholic Bishops group, saying it was a good first steo...a statement that was all that any wavering Democratic voter in the pew needed to hear. Believe it or not, the Catholics in my Church will feel less concernmed after this...and, as with Catholics nationwide, they vote at a higher rate than the 22 or so percent that they represent (and more in the key electoral states of Pennsylvania & Ohio, etc.)

    So, enlighten me please as to the newscasts that are questioning the results.  Or not.  Actually, caseyOR, I'm elated about today's result...and, I'm no neophyte in this area.  
    It was a troublesome mess in terms of wedge issue a few days ago...that has been effectively blunted.  tomorrow, I'll find out more about other Dem perceptions at the annual JJ Dinner (Dem ) where everyone will be talking.  More later....


    maybe you hang in the same circles (5.00 / 1) (#115)
    by TeresaInPa on Sat Feb 11, 2012 at 10:45:03 AM EST
    as the red beanie boys.  Where I live in Pa.  Catholic women, democrats and republican, think the Bishops should mind their wine and wafers and leave women alone.  The general consensus is that unless they are going to financially support any children born from lack of birth control, they they should Shut the heck up.

    Same (none / 0) (#120)
    by Ga6thDem on Sat Feb 11, 2012 at 12:14:46 PM EST
    thing here in Ga

    Yep, I'm from The Coal Region in PA (none / 0) (#134)
    by christinep on Sat Feb 11, 2012 at 05:27:37 PM EST
    And I talk regularly with me Democratic, Polish background, Catholic relatives in the area.  What you say is true...in part.  I share a lot of the belief that the Bishops should back off on birth control.  When the letter was read in my Denver parish two weeks ago, I directly mentioned my negative reaction to "the politics from the pulpit" and asked the Monseignor if this pressuring was going to continue until November.  

    The compromise put forth by the President elated me for a number of reasons, not the least of which was the wedge issue & major distraction the matter would inevitably become. Most importantly, tho, it is a particularly uncomfortable position to be caught in the middle between your beliefs as an American woman & your church.  Yes, almost every Catholic woman I know talks the way you describe (especially me & my family in PA.  But--and this can be hard to put into words--it hurts to some extent.

    Maybe it comes down to this:  Spirituality as expressed in one's religion is central to the person...so, obviously, is one's sexuality.  For me, I feel most whole when the two are in harmony; when there is conflictt, it tears at you.  You work it out...that includes inside jokes about the situation and about the isolated hierarchy, etc.  Still, the Catholic women I know feel much better when it goes away or is resolved.

    Granted, this is not about the intellect or rationality; it is about faith.  It just is...like love...and you live within the construct of who you are.  So, accommodation allows us to move from the kind of hurtful conflict (and pulpit lectures) and--in a prosaic political way--to preclude an unpredictable course of an emotional wedge issue where people have been known to feel one thing & yet do another thing between surveys and voting.

    BTW, thank you for the comment that stirred me enough to write/voice something I've been feeling for many years.  (there areforms of catharsis in all of this.)


    christine (none / 0) (#137)
    by kmblue on Sat Feb 11, 2012 at 06:58:58 PM EST
    what Obama has done is give religious fanatics--or as Digby calls them "the forced birth crowd" TO KEEP PUSHING AGAINST WOMEN'S RIGHT TO CONTROL THEIR OWN BODIES.  Obama has enabled these crazies by caving, and you're enabling them by approving of it.

    Definition of caving (none / 0) (#151)
    by christinep on Sun Feb 12, 2012 at 01:35:56 AM EST
    One caves when one changes the substance.  The substance is intact. Not cave, but good compromise.  Check around about what Planned Parenthood, NARAL, Emily 's List, & ACLU have said.

    Front page article in NY Times this am (none / 0) (#152)
    by kmblue on Sun Feb 12, 2012 at 03:54:20 AM EST
    Bishops say the compromise doesn't go far enough.
    Some clever move by Obama.  He'll have to take a stand (not likely) or another chunk of women's rights will disappear.  

    The Bishops are isolating themselves (none / 0) (#154)
    by christinep on Sun Feb 12, 2012 at 12:21:20 PM EST
    My guess is that there is an internal rift within the conference.  In any event, with the key Catholic Hospitals Association agreeing with the WH accommodation, as well as support from the significant Catholic Charities, and approval by United Catholics, a lay group, this issue will trouble the administrative arm of the Bishops as time passes. What I'm guessing is that when you turn down a good position like the Bishops predictably did, it won't hurt the WH's compromise...but, it could cause those in the pews to let any lectures on this now to go in one ear & out the other.

    We shall see....


    And if Obama does not change (none / 0) (#155)
    by MKS on Sun Feb 12, 2012 at 03:44:10 PM EST
    the policy, you will support that stance and give him credit for it?

    Tweety said last night (5.00 / 1) (#123)
    by MKS on Sat Feb 11, 2012 at 01:03:14 PM EST
    that his sources in the White House indicated that Obama had known for a week that he would change the policy and was looking for the right answer.

    Tweety also wondered if Obama let the issue percolate because it helps him when the discussion is about birth control instead of the economy, which although better is still not great.  And the focus on birth control certainly did not hurt Santorum--and Santorum's rise did hurt Romney, which helped Obama.

    Obama comes out well.

    The policy of ensuring access to birth control is affirmed.  

    The Bishops reminded everyone how unreasonable they are.  And the Bishops will oppose Obama on abortion anyway, and so it is good to have cemented their image even further as one of opposing birth control.....Better to fight the culture wars over birth control than abortion.


    Time to nail 96 theses on the Bishops' door (5.00 / 1) (#48)
    by MKS on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 02:16:40 PM EST

    This is a positive outcome (5.00 / 2) (#63)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 03:11:51 PM EST
    I think people are forgetting that before these back and forths, there was a copay.  Obama eliminated the copay, greatly broadening the people with access, and his only concession was to make the insurance companies pay for it.

    I don't get the frustration by some.  To hear some tell it, this is the most anti-woman "concession that received the complete support of both NARAL and Planned Parenthood" ever.

    Going back to that survey the other day... (5.00 / 2) (#65)
    by ruffian on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 03:20:45 PM EST
    when are the 4% of people like me who oppose drone strikes on American citizens who may be terrorists going to get our week of him worrying about how best to make us happy?

    My only objection is that he is giving the Catholic church a bigger seat at the table than me.


    Agreed (none / 0) (#71)
    by gyrfalcon on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 03:37:31 PM EST
    He clearly tripped into this, but he comes out of it smelling like a rose, IMO, Mr. Reasonable finding a simple solution, standing up for women, shutting the bishops up, while the right-wing crazies running for the GOP nomination continue to screech until they're purple in the face.

    I'm not much of an Obama fan on most things, as you know, but he handled this one perfectly and it's turned out better for him and worse for the GOP and the bishops than if he'd handled the contraception issue this way from the beginning.

    The Catholic church has already largely caved on this whole issue, since the co-pay arrangement they've been living with for a decade with no real complaint is nothing more than hiding behind a pretty ridiculous fig leaf.  IMO, as always.


    LOL (none / 0) (#90)
    by TeresaInSnow2 on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 05:52:12 PM EST
    I still want you to PM me your address so I can send you my premium increases for all the "free" services under Obamacare.  

    I just recently dropped my prescription drug coverage altogether because the difference in premium rates with a plan offering prescription drug coverage wasn't cost effective, given all the new "features of the "affordable" care act.

    Stop saying this stuff is free -- what an intellectually dishonest bunch of crap.  We on the individual market are paying thru our noses for it...and our coverage is DECREASING because of it.


    Listen carefully (5.00 / 2) (#102)
    by gyrfalcon on Sat Feb 11, 2012 at 02:19:14 AM EST
    We are not under "Obama care" yet.  And we won't be until 2014.

    I think, could be wrong... (none / 0) (#119)
    by jimakaPPJ on Sat Feb 11, 2012 at 12:11:25 PM EST
    that we get a 50% discount on brand name drugs if we are in the doughnut hole this year.

    A few elements of Obamacare (none / 0) (#122)
    by MO Blue on Sat Feb 11, 2012 at 12:48:36 PM EST
    have already been implemented. From what I have read these changes have been used to justify premium increases in the individual market.

    I think they would have raised them to cover (none / 0) (#133)
    by jimakaPPJ on Sat Feb 11, 2012 at 05:05:38 PM EST
    increased costs. Plus they are also doing it to cover the expected increase in costs caused by Obama's whatever you want to call it.

    You can't add years of coverage of children for nothing... I guess 27 is the new childhood's end age.


    Such baloney (none / 0) (#143)
    by sj on Sat Feb 11, 2012 at 08:01:01 PM EST
    They're doing to increase their already huge profits.  They are a middle man and they profit when they can increase the cost to the consumer and decrease payouts.  I know that you believe in single payer but I can't believe you think they're just trying to break even in this deal.  They're trying to increase profits.  Period.

    Of course they will. And Obamacare (none / 0) (#148)
    by jimakaPPJ on Sat Feb 11, 2012 at 08:59:11 PM EST
    is the excuse.

    Exactly (none / 0) (#149)
    by sj on Sat Feb 11, 2012 at 09:05:26 PM EST
    An excuse.  Not a reason.

    Obviously you don't pay attention (none / 0) (#147)
    by jimakaPPJ on Sat Feb 11, 2012 at 08:58:07 PM EST
    to anyone unless they agree with you 100% of the time.

    That's bad politics.

    Anyway, if you had you would know that I have commented numerous times that I think we should have a single payer system based on the medicare model.

    As for my comment, surely you don't think that we can add people... the additional years of coverage of children to age 26... without having costs and premiums increased.

    So yes. Obamacare will result in higher premiums.
    We kid ourselves when we think otherwise.


    MO Blue (none / 0) (#138)
    by kmblue on Sat Feb 11, 2012 at 07:01:28 PM EST
    ya got that right.  My individual policy insurance policy wants to charge me a grand a month come April, just for little old me.  That's a 30 percent rise in my premium.  I'm seriously thinking of "going bare".  HT to you too, Towanda.

    I wish that every single person in the world (5.00 / 15) (#72)
    by Dr Molly on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 03:46:45 PM EST
    lacking a uterus and ovaries would never ever speak again about birth control or abortion.

    Hurray! I certainly agree (5.00 / 1) (#78)
    by Zorba on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 04:32:48 PM EST
    I wish I could give you a +10.  Unfortunately, we're not going to get this any time soon.

    BTD too? (none / 0) (#92)
    by MKS on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 06:08:40 PM EST
    by the terms of (none / 0) (#100)
    by The Addams Family on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 11:11:24 PM EST
    the commenter's stated wish, the answer would seem to be yes, unless BTD has grown the aforementioned lady parts

    your point is . . . ?


    It would be a very misguided (none / 0) (#101)
    by MKS on Sat Feb 11, 2012 at 12:34:31 AM EST

    BTD's major contribution at Big Orange imo was on reproductive rights.....I think he met Boxer to strategize the hearings on Roberts, etc.

    And your point is?


    my point (5.00 / 4) (#103)
    by The Addams Family on Sat Feb 11, 2012 at 03:12:44 AM EST
    may not be the same as Dr Molly's, so i won't claim to speak for her

    but your response to her (& to me) has a scolding, paternalistic tone, as if you believe that men are somehow entitled to special recognition simply for choosing to do political work that women, one way or another, have no choice about doing every single day of our lives

    that's because we're forced every day, in ways large & small, to fight for full personhood & political equality

    our political struggle is not limited to the female reproductive system, but the commonly understood liberal framework of "women's issues," so called, arises from the fact that the female reproductive system is the battleground on which we are constantly assaulted & forced to defend ourselves, whether from unwanted pregnancy or unwanted sexual attention or unsafe birth control or rape or any of the other goodies that go with Living While Female

    so i took Dr Molly's hyperbolic comment as a wry expression of justified anger about a plain truth: that it's not women who, for millennia, have been attacking women for being women

    & good for BTD, but i hope he does what he does primarily for himself, not "for women" - everyone, knowingly or not, has a vested interest in everyone else's full personhood & political equality


    Thanks, Addams, tho it's pointless to engage. (5.00 / 5) (#105)
    by Dr Molly on Sat Feb 11, 2012 at 08:40:47 AM EST
    Obviously, if one were to actually think about it, we would not need BTD's wonderful and uncompromising support if what I dreamily wished in my comment were true.

    Twisting it into a 'BTD issue' was not worthy of reply IMO. As per usual.

    Everyone here knows I adore BTD and his unwavering commitment to women's issues.


    me too (5.00 / 1) (#125)
    by The Addams Family on Sat Feb 11, 2012 at 02:14:56 PM EST
    i appreciate BTD & all our other allies, including women who no longer have a working uterus & ovaries as a result of natural &/or surgical menopause

    for years, hundreds of thousands of them have been working selflessly, & often anonymously & thanklessly, to hold back the assault on women's reproductive rights even though they no longer have the same stake in the fight as do women in the childbearing years

    a respectful response to the anger expressed in your original comment might have mentioned these women


    There was no anger in my comment. (none / 0) (#135)
    by Dr Molly on Sat Feb 11, 2012 at 06:42:26 PM EST
    Just a statement of my wish. An apparently at least 12 others agree.

    But we just love when men like MKS tell us how to feel and think and when its appropriate.


    15 & counting (5.00 / 2) (#150)
    by The Addams Family on Sat Feb 11, 2012 at 11:16:32 PM EST
    & if you're not angry, that's fine - i am

    I didn' tell you what to feel (none / 0) (#144)
    by MKS on Sat Feb 11, 2012 at 08:08:13 PM EST
    What a strawman.

    The comment was trite (none / 0) (#113)
    by MKS on Sat Feb 11, 2012 at 10:20:53 AM EST
    and well past its shelf life.

    So, it does not really add to the discussion.  


    Dr. Molly's comment was original (none / 0) (#111)
    by MKS on Sat Feb 11, 2012 at 10:19:24 AM EST
    and pithy--about 20 years ago.

    To repeat it now doesn't do much.  Everyone should be concerned.

    In terms of scolding, isn't your post just that?  


    Dr. Molly can repeat it (5.00 / 1) (#139)
    by kmblue on Sat Feb 11, 2012 at 07:02:53 PM EST
    because it's true.

    Okay (none / 0) (#146)
    by MKS on Sat Feb 11, 2012 at 08:20:22 PM EST
    If men could get pregnant, abortion would be a sacrament.

    That's a nice one-liner too.


    So, instead, MKS, you decided to go (5.00 / 1) (#141)
    by Anne on Sat Feb 11, 2012 at 07:37:33 PM EST
    "pissy" instead of "pithy;" and your decision to do so is a measure of the truth of Molly's statement, which is completely relevant today.

    It is decidedly disheartening that someone whom others want to describe as being on the side of women, keeps acting in ways that keep those who aren't, in the conversation, and believing that their point of view is both relevant and credible.

    As a woman, I absolutely share Molly's wish - and I would probably fall over in a dead faint if someone like Barack Obama were to say, "women, and women alone, have the right to make decisions about their own bodies, and the right to have affordable access to the care their bodies require.  Period."

    But, that's not going to happen, because Obama is going to continue to go out of his way to "accommodate" the religious point of view, even if that results in women having less autonomy to make those decisions.

    It might behoove you, and other not-so-enlightened men, to listen to the women who are telling them what they want, and what they need.

    And then get out of the way.


    Not so enlightened men (none / 0) (#142)
    by MKS on Sat Feb 11, 2012 at 07:48:46 PM EST
    I support reproductive freedom.

    So, you can save your comments for someone else.


    Who has the "pissy" attitude? (none / 0) (#145)
    by MKS on Sat Feb 11, 2012 at 08:17:18 PM EST
    Let me say up front: (none / 0) (#3)
    by jimakaPPJ on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 12:07:32 PM EST
    I do not agree with the Catholic Church's position on birth control/abortion.


    The insurance company will be required to "reach out directly and offer her contraceptive care free of charge. The religious institutions will not have to offer anything, and they will not pay for it."

    There is no such thing as a free lunch.

    The cost will just be shifted over to others.

    And if the President can tell a Insurance company they must offer something free....what else can he tell a company they must offer free?

    Contraceptive coverage reduces costs (5.00 / 4) (#4)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 12:10:27 PM EST
    In this case, someone pockets the savings, here the insurance co. I imagine. It is the position of the Bishops that is the costly one.

    I think requiring insurance cos. to do it shields them from political pressure.


    Exactly (5.00 / 2) (#21)
    by Socraticsilence on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 01:03:51 PM EST
    insurance companies are effectively massive actuarial concerns and all the data I've read on the matter seems to state that this will save insurers money given the cost of pregnancy and obstetrics not to mention pediatric care.

    Yup - one voice you do not hear (5.00 / 1) (#30)
    by ruffian on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 01:26:53 PM EST
    arguing on the side of the church is that of the insurance companies. I'm sure they would be handing out birth control pills like candy to prevent more pregnancies.

    They are more likely to argue on the side of controlling the numbers of births a woman is allowed.


    Do you think he can require (none / 0) (#8)
    by jimakaPPJ on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 12:18:39 PM EST
    the insurance co's to provide this "free" to some and not to others would stand up in court??

    Maybe I can talk him to requiring the insurance co provide me free blood pressure med.

    I mean patients taking it saves millions in reduced strokes, heart attacks and kidney failure.


    they have to offer it (5.00 / 1) (#11)
    by CST on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 12:21:51 PM EST
    free to everyone

    I assume you mean (none / 0) (#17)
    by jimakaPPJ on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 12:47:33 PM EST
    if they offer it some then they have to offer it to all....."free."

    That works for me, but all that would do is shift the corp's cost over to other premium payers.


    yes, those same premium payers (5.00 / 2) (#31)
    by ruffian on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 01:28:11 PM EST
    currently paying even more for pregnancies and births.

    So you opine that (none / 0) (#52)
    by jimakaPPJ on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 02:34:39 PM EST
    their premiums would go down?

    And (none / 0) (#55)
    by cal1942 on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 02:47:02 PM EST
    the unfortunate complications of some births.

    Do you actually believe that their (none / 0) (#56)
    by jimakaPPJ on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 02:51:04 PM EST
    premiums would go down???

    Well, I don't. They'll just take the savings and increase the premiums to cover the increased cost.


    Premiums never go down (5.00 / 1) (#60)
    by ruffian on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 03:00:00 PM EST
    But once again, WHAT increased cost? If even one of the women they provide the pill to did not get it, and had a troubled pregnancy or childbirth, not to mention child care, the costs would far outweigh the cost of providing pills to thousands of women. Providing the Pill results in NO increased costs to the insurance company.

    True, which is why (5.00 / 1) (#64)
    by gyrfalcon on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 03:20:28 PM EST
    single payer is the only reasonable way to organize health care, as most of us have been saying here all along.

    Huh? (none / 0) (#76)
    by Addison on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 04:30:30 PM EST
    They'll just take the savings and increase the premiums to cover the increased cost.

    What "increased cost" are you referring to?


    If one group is not paying (none / 0) (#85)
    by jimakaPPJ on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 04:50:24 PM EST
    the other groups will pay. Their cost is increased.

    The insurance company will be required to "reach out directly and offer her contraceptive care free of charge. The religious institutions will not have to offer anything, and they will not pay for it.

    And the insurance companies will increase premiums.


    What? (none / 0) (#87)
    by Addison on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 05:31:12 PM EST
    Their cost is increased.

    Insurance companies will save money. Only in Wonderland is this considered a "cost". A "cost" that saves money is not a cost, but an investment. Birth control is a GREAT investment for insurance companies.

    ...an analysis published in the American Journal of Public Health in 1995 that used cost data from managed care plans provided by large employers in 45 major metropolitan areas to compare the costs and benefits of contraceptive use. The study found that all 15 of the contraceptive methods reviewed were cost-effective when compared with the direct medical costs of unintended pregnancy that resulted when methods were not used. The savings ranged from $9,000 to $14,000 per method over a five-year period; using oral contraceptives--the most commonly used reversible method in the United States -- saved almost $13,000 over a five-year period.

    Considerable cost-savings resulting from public-sector investments in contraceptive services have been extensively documented. According to AGI, public-sector expenditures for contraceptive services in FY 1987 totaled an estimated $412 million. If these subsidized services had not been available, the federal and state governments would have spent an additional $1.2 billion through their Medicaid programs, including the costs of unplanned births and abortions. Thus, for every dollar spent in the public sector on contraceptive services, three dollars are saved in Medicaid costs for pregnancy-related health care and medical care for newborns.



    Having worked for several very large (none / 0) (#98)
    by jimakaPPJ on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 08:02:53 PM EST
    corporations.....At one of them I was a Product Manager.

    Presently they are selling a product and getting paid for it.

    Under the President's edict they will now give the product to some, not to others. (Whether or not this is unconstitutional I will lay aside.)

    Your proposition is that the effect of giving this product away will save money in the long run because of reduced usage of another product.

    That's a big fat maybe. No one gets retained or promoted based on maybes.

    Answer: Increase premium prices for everyone.


    Hey, don't credit me! Credit Obama! (none / 0) (#84)
    by jimakaPPJ on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 04:47:32 PM EST
    The insurance company will be required to "reach out directly and offer her contraceptive care free of charge. The religious institutions will not have to offer anything, and they will not pay for it.

    Its cheaper than not offering it (5.00 / 1) (#12)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 12:23:50 PM EST
    You seem to be missing the point.

    Not offering it leads to higher costs, either abortions or pregnancies, the really expensive stuff.


    It would seem so, but (5.00 / 1) (#66)
    by gyrfalcon on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 03:21:56 PM EST
    just curiously, why then did insurance companies have to be forced to include birth control in their policies in the past, do you suppose?  I've never understood that.

    many women who get pregnant (none / 0) (#124)
    by TeresaInPa on Sat Feb 11, 2012 at 02:01:41 PM EST
    do so while using birth control.  It happens because they almost never use it 100 percent correctly.  Free birth control is nice, but it doesn't correlate to lots less pregnancies.  Those same women still get pregnant by accident and on purpose often with in a few years.

    To be nice (none / 0) (#126)
    by CoralGables on Sat Feb 11, 2012 at 02:26:23 PM EST
    "birth control is nice, but it doesn't correlate to lots less pregnancies"

    Your statement is mathematically illogical.


    My husband (none / 0) (#75)
    by star on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 04:26:20 PM EST
    is wondering if condoms are going to be free at walgreens?

    Now you're thinking... (none / 0) (#77)
    by Addison on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 04:32:32 PM EST
    Maybe I can talk him to requiring the insurance co provide me free blood pressure med.

    I mean patients taking it saves millions in reduced strokes, heart attacks and kidney failure.

    That certainly would be good public health policy, combined with a cut in subsidies to the meat, dairy, and sugar industries. You could even pay for the former with the latter.


    Yep that's why insurance companies offer abortion (none / 0) (#9)
    by Dan the Man on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 12:19:28 PM EST
    payments also.  They would rather you have an abortion so that their costs would go down and have more profits.

    They will still (none / 0) (#91)
    by TeresaInSnow2 on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 05:54:10 PM EST
    pass on the costs.  They have already done so on individual plans.

    Reduces costs--huge fact (none / 0) (#93)
    by MKS on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 06:10:41 PM EST
    This explains why the insurance companies could be mandated to provide contraception coverage and not be making a peep about it.....

    The guy who wants to force everyone (none / 0) (#6)
    by jondee on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 12:14:18 PM EST
    into military service is now worried about companys with multi-billon dollar profit margins being told by the President to give something back to the community..

    jondee, do you really think the (none / 0) (#10)
    by jimakaPPJ on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 12:21:21 PM EST
    insurance companies will let their profits suffer??? You know they will not. They'll just increase premiums.

    BTW - UMS wouldn't be a Prez edict. That branch called Congress would be involved.


    you really don't seem to get it: (5.00 / 4) (#16)
    by jtaylorr on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 12:35:48 PM EST
    insurance companies save money by providing free contraceptives

    This (5.00 / 1) (#24)
    by Socraticsilence on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 01:04:50 PM EST
    hell if they could mandate things like birth control  and healthy eating they would.

    Maybe you better (none / 0) (#54)
    by jimakaPPJ on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 02:40:47 PM EST
    read my comments up thread.

    I'm against the Catholic Church's position.

    I'm for "free" birth control...

    But this is not just BC pills and condoms, which also is fine with me.

    But don't think that the insurance corps will do anything but increase premiums to cover the cost. (Any savings will just go to the bottom line.)

    And I still don't see how the President can just tell insurance companies that they have to provide something free.


    In keeping with the conservative tradition (none / 0) (#57)
    by jondee on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 02:53:02 PM EST
    of finding a way to make a stink EVERYTIME government makes any industry do anything..

    Well, there is this thing called the (none / 0) (#82)
    by jimakaPPJ on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 04:45:32 PM EST

    I don't think it says that a company has to give a product/service away.


    Have you heard the insurance companies (none / 0) (#94)
    by MKS on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 06:11:24 PM EST
    complaining about this?

    We get it (none / 0) (#116)
    by sj on Sat Feb 11, 2012 at 11:39:32 AM EST
    That's your position and you're sticking to it.

    not really (none / 0) (#127)
    by TeresaInPa on Sat Feb 11, 2012 at 02:29:25 PM EST
    say I am 20 again.  I work for some company where they are required to provide me with free birth control pills.  wOOt!  ParTay, me and my chicks are getting free pills and we are using them and life is good for several years until many many many packs of pills later, I use the pills while on anti-biotics and no back up method, oops preggers.  My friend Jenna, goes on a bender one weekend, forgets one pill, oops preggers.  Our friend Liza ran off to Vegas married her Basket Ball player boy friend, stopped taking her pills and got pregnant on purpose.  Wendy was raped and the damned pill let her down, we don't know how, she had an abortion and thank God our insurance pays for her therapy.
    Now suddenly all that money the insurance was saving by paying for the pills, was for NOTHING.
    Why do you think that for years insurance companies refused to pay for birth control pills at all?

    So what you are saying is (none / 0) (#130)
    by sj on Sat Feb 11, 2012 at 03:59:13 PM EST
    free birth controls means those wimmins are going ParTay.  wOOt!  You don't really have a lot of respect for women, do you?

    The (5.00 / 1) (#38)
    by Ga6thDem on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 01:43:25 PM EST
    insurance companies are not going to have profits suffer. Supplying birth control pills is actually pretty profitable to them. Have you noticed that they aren't throwing down on this?

    And (none / 0) (#58)
    by cal1942 on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 02:55:02 PM EST
    lowering their costs to boot.

    If the substance stays the same but looks like a (none / 0) (#5)
    by magster on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 12:14:11 PM EST
    reasonable compromise, then its a win for Obama. Especially if the GOP and Church have a tantrum that alienates women from them both even further. (Of course, that will be when Obama caves even further).

    What continues to be interesting is the self-destructive war against women being waged by the GOP, with a Kos story now reporting that Republicans are now objecting to the reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act that passed virtually unanimously 4 years ago. They really are unconcerned about winning the election unless they believe that they can disenfranchise women before November.

    Oh god (5.00 / 1) (#25)
    by Socraticsilence on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 01:08:13 PM EST
    I hope they fight more on this- the public was already behind Obama and this strips the anti-Woman right of the slim rhetorical fig leaf they had before-- now if we can just get them to come right out and condemn contraceptive access openly (not just the bishops but the whole American Right) Obama has effectively created a massive wedge issue- its like gay marriage in 2004, only this time the administration is pro-civil rights.

    Santorum has condemned contraceptive use.... (none / 0) (#27)
    by magster on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 01:10:00 PM EST
    ... and he has better than a puncher's chance of being the nominee.

    Santorum (none / 0) (#39)
    by Ga6thDem on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 01:45:42 PM EST
    has gone a step further I believe and actually advocates banning birth control.

    Pleeease make him the nominee.... (5.00 / 2) (#43)
    by ruffian on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 02:03:01 PM EST
    Be careful (none / 0) (#46)
    by Ga6thDem on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 02:15:18 PM EST
    of what you wish for.

    I have no worries on this one (5.00 / 1) (#61)
    by ruffian on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 03:01:09 PM EST
    I don't (5.00 / 2) (#69)
    by Ga6thDem on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 03:27:39 PM EST
    make that mistake anymore. George W. Bush anyone?

    Santorum believes that Obama's sekrit (5.00 / 2) (#51)
    by Farmboy on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 02:32:54 PM EST
    Kenyan-Muslim troops are personally going to hold down all the Christian women and force feed them abortion pills while they march everyone to the guillotines.

    Followed by forced loud music and the wearing of sweaters with sleeves.


    No! No! Not SLEEVES!! (5.00 / 2) (#68)
    by gyrfalcon on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 03:24:34 PM EST
    Oh, the horror!

    while taking away their guns (none / 0) (#62)
    by ruffian on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 03:01:28 PM EST
    Nice, but i"m partial to this version myself (none / 0) (#86)
    by Farmboy on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 05:05:27 PM EST

    And by the way, they do a fantastic show.


    PPP tweeted Santorum is the new nat'l GOP leader (none / 0) (#44)
    by magster on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 02:03:06 PM EST
    Proves the bogusness of religious accomodation of (none / 0) (#7)
    by Dan the Man on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 12:17:19 PM EST
    anyone.  I expect some people will start complaining about the "religious freedom" of insurance companies to not offer birth control.  But then any non-corporate or corporate person (ie corporation or us ordinary joes) can complain about "religious freedom" when they don't want to follow the law.  One might as well just give up the idea of laws at all.

    The twist of the great conservative Catholic (5.00 / 1) (#19)
    by magster on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 12:50:09 PM EST
    Justice Scalia's opinion in 1990 shooting down accomodations to generally applicable laws now being the Obama admin's strongest legal argument to the Catholic bishops on this legal argument is chuckle-worthy.

    That's more ironic than rain on your wedding day or a fly in your chardonnay.


    All they'll say (none / 0) (#14)
    by andgarden on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 12:30:48 PM EST
    is "money is fungible." And, of course, they're right. But eff em.

    Sure (5.00 / 1) (#15)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 12:31:43 PM EST
    Look, the fig leaf is there if they want it.

    They of course do not want it.

    They are just deciding on the words.


    Nah. Birth Control => Costs Go Down (none / 0) (#18)
    by Dan the Man on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 12:49:44 PM EST
    So their money won't be used to pay for birth control because they will be paying less in insurance due to the use of birth control - as long as the insurance company isn't pocketing the extra profit.  If anything, right now, everyone else is paying extra premium in order to subsidize their opposition to birth control.

    Don't you remember the ACA debate? (5.00 / 2) (#23)
    by andgarden on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 01:04:27 PM EST
    They don't want to risk the possibility that any money they are forced to pay will be used to cover birth control.

    They are not interested in a factual discussion about the economic merits of birth control.


    The arrangement for contraceptive (none / 0) (#28)
    by KeysDan on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 01:18:54 PM EST
    coverage appears to be a good one.  I have felt that an accommodation would be prudent provided these preventative health services were available, accessible and without co-pays.  The accommodation should satisfy the Catholic hierarchy, if they want to be satisfied--they can always assign a Jesuit who has studied how many angels can dance on the head of a pin to find a theological rationale if needed.  Politically, it may be disappointing not to have the president on the run.  Certainly, that will be the case for Santorum, who has been frothing in glee.

    The Bishops respond: (none / 0) (#45)
    by Anne on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 02:09:48 PM EST
    The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) sees initial opportunities in preserving the principle of religious freedom after President Obama's announcement today. But the Conference continues to express concerns. "While there may be an openness to respond to some of our concerns, we reserve judgment on the details until we have them," said Cardinal-designate Timothy Dolan, president of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops.

    `The past three weeks have witnessed a remarkable unity of Americans from all religions or none at all worried about the erosion of religious freedom and governmental intrusion into issues of faith and morals," he said.

    `Today's decision to revise how individuals obtain services that are morally objectionable to religious entities and people of faith is a first step in the right direction," Cardinal-designate Dolan said. "We hope to work with the Administration to guarantee that Americans' consciences and our religious freedom are not harmed by these regulations."


    Well...let's hope the references to "initial opportunities" and "first step" are just a somewhat gracious way of backing down; I worry that the one-year transition period just gives them time to re-group, and hope for a friendlier-to-religious-bullying administration in a year's time.


    Obama (none / 0) (#80)
    by lentinel on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 04:37:41 PM EST
    does not seem to me to be a sure thing when it comes to appointing Justices who are determined to save Roe.

    Huh? We don't have to guess about that... (none / 0) (#83)
    by Addison on Fri Feb 10, 2012 at 04:45:52 PM EST
    ...he's already shown us his SCOTUS selection process, I think most pro-choicers are satisfied. Wake up, it's not 2008.

    In 2008 (5.00 / 2) (#104)
    by lentinel on Sat Feb 11, 2012 at 04:49:09 AM EST
    I already had an impression of Obama as someone who would willingly cave or float to the right when he thought it was in his political or economic interest to do so.

    In the intervening years, I have found that I have had no reason to change my opinion of him. In fact, my preliminary impressions have been strongly reinforced.

    Maybe you're right that "most pro-choicers" (whomever and whatever that may be) are "satisfied" (whatever that might mean), but I'm not.

    I don't trust him at all.


    No, it's not 2008. (5.00 / 2) (#109)
    by Anne on Sat Feb 11, 2012 at 09:19:11 AM EST
    It's not even 2009, when, faced with two vacancies on the Court, the president maintained the existing liberal/conservative balance.

    Should there be another vacancy, and should he still be president, he will have the opportunity to really shake things up, and change that balance in a way that could make the kind of difference so many of us have been waiting for.

    But, here's the thing: as I look over the Obama record, I don't see someone who is committed to the kinds of liberal - or, if I must use this term, progressive - views that will add up to turning the Court to the left.  

    And, frankly, I don't think women's issues - the right to choose - would be anywhere near at the top of the Obama's list of Things I Want In A Supreme Court Justice.  No, I think Obama's going to be looking for an authoritarian vote - someone who "understands" things like, executive power conferring the right to assassinate American citizens, the right to send drones into other countries to drop bombs without having to consult with the Congress, the right to indefinitely detain anyone, anywhere for any reason.  I think he'll be looking for someone who understands the need to intrude on people's privacy, limit their rights to keep the nation safe.  To name a few - the list could be longer.

    Women's issues, it seems to me, have been little more than a bargaining chip whenever Obama seeks to make points with those whose views should, in my opinion, be firmly and decisively put in their place, and denied the political food and water they need to stay a constant part of the conversation.  I guess one thing Obama's done, is keep hope alive in the conservative community that eventually, their views will prevail.

    No, we have no reason to trust that Obama will "of course" nominate someone to the Court who will establish a new, and more liberal, direction in its rulings, even though he is the president who put Sotomayor and Kagan on the Court.  His record simply doesn't point in that direction.


    I was going to throw a $hit fit of giant (none / 0) (#112)
    by Militarytracy on Sat Feb 11, 2012 at 10:20:27 AM EST
    Proportions if women had to start flocking to Planned Parenthood and give up their private ObGyns.  I have nothing against Planned Parenthood, they are there to catch people falling through the cracks.  To hold all women in general though over the crack?  It would have made Planned Parenthood vital to everyone's needs and impossible to ever successfully argue getting rid of though.  That wouldn't have been the worst thing.

    Question: Do the insurance policies (none / 0) (#153)
    by ruffian on Sun Feb 12, 2012 at 12:21:07 PM EST
    offered by the Catholic hospitals, etc. cover vasectomies?