Tag Archives: affordability

News Roundup – Egypt, George Will, Robert Reich

Over 500 people have died in Egypt. Over 3700 have been injured. President Obama made a statement earlier today. “While we want to sustain a relationship with Egypt, our traditional cooperation cannot continue as usual while civilians are being killed in the streets. The Egyptian people deserve better than what we’ve seen over the past several days.” As expected, President Obama stopped short of specifically stating that what is happening in Egypt is a coup. Yet, as the violence escalates, I believe we will have to, President Obama will have to, withdraw our $1.3 billion in military aid from Egypt. Look for Al Qaeda to try to exploit this. No matter what kind of diplomatic mumbo-jumbo comes out of the State Department and the White House, whatever’s going on in Egypt, it is clearly not a democracy.

Just to make sure that we know that George Will is still alive and kicking, he wrote one of the most unhinged, neoconservative pieces of gobbledygook that I’ve read in a while. Now, President Obama is worse than Nixon. Yes, he is talking about the Affordability Care Act. The fact that the administration stated that they’re going to wait a year before implementation represents an offense worse than Watergate. Nope, I don’t understand it either. Let’s be clear. Presidents have pushed the envelope of presidential power for as long as we’ve had a Republic. It is up to Congress and the Supreme Court to push back. Currently, we have a completely dysfunctional Congress. They can’t agree on what time of day it is, let alone whether something the president does is right or wrong. As usual, George Will is way off base.

Robert Reich continues to be one of the best progressive voices on the economy. The following is a presentation on income inequality. It is wonderful.

Did Obama and Holder screw up?

supreme court

So, the cornerstone of Obama’s first three years in office is the Affordability Care Act. It now looks as if the whole thing may go up in flames. Of course, reading the Supreme Court is like trying to read tea leaves in the middle of a windstorm. We really don’t know how many of the justices are going to vote. It looks as if it comes down to Justice Kennedy, who has been the swing vote since Alito was nominated by President Bush. By many accounts, the Solicitor General had a really bad day. So, my question is whether he is, after all, the best guy to argue the case. Don’t we need to have somebody. or should we have somebody. who doesn’t have bad days? Shouldn’t we have had some superstar?

From Mother Jones:

Virtually everyone agrees that today’s arguments before the Supreme Court were a disaster for the Obama administration. Adam Serwer sums up the reason:

Solicitor General Donald B. Verrilli Jr. should be grateful to the Supreme Court for refusing to allow cameras in the courtroom, because his defense of Obamacare on Tuesday may go down as one of the most spectacular flameouts in the history of the court.

Stepping up to the podium, Verrilli stammered as he began his argument. He coughed, he cleared his throat, he took a drink of water. And that was before he even finished the first part of his argument. Sounding less like a world-class lawyer and more like a teenager giving an oral presentation for the first time, Verrilli delivered a rambling, apprehensive legal defense of liberalism’s biggest domestic accomplishment since the 1960s—and one that may well have doubled as its eulogy.

This is just bizarre. Verrilli is an experienced guy. He’s been involved in loads of Supreme Court cases and has personally argued more than a dozen. So what on earth happened? So far, I haven’t seen anyone even take a stab at trying to figure it out. How could Verrilli possibly be unprepared for the questions he got, given that the conservative arguments against Obamacare have been extremely public and obvious for well over a year? Everyone in the world knew what to expect. Everyone except Verrilli, apparently.

This is just mind boggling.

Finally, I can’t stand liberals who can’t defend liberalism. It makes me want to vomit. Liberalism is all about giving people opportunities to get ahead. It you fumble those opportunities, then you fail. Whether it is a public school system which gives inner-city kids (blacks and whites… everybody) an opportunity at a better life or universal healthcare, which covers everybody. It is highly frustrating that this guy couldn’t articulate that.

Opinions Versus Facts

I think that everyone in America would agree that we are all entitled to our own opinions. As a matter fact, I don’t think it’s a prerequisite to have your own opinions. If you want to you can borrow someone else’s. Yet, it is often the case, especially on talk radio, that someone will start flapping their lips and will lay out a set of “facts” which flow into their opinion. The problem is that their “facts” are sometimes not facts at all. Sometimes they are indeed lies. Let’s look at what Representative Steve King (R-IA) stated on G Gordon Liddy’s talk show (the fact that Liddy did not even attempt to correct him is a different conversation and says a lot about Liddy’s character).

From TP:

First of all [the Affordable Care Act] is unconstitutional. We can go through all of that component, Gordon, but, in the end, this trade off of giving up our personal decisions on what health insurance policy we choose to buy, what health insurance policy will be delivered to us because of market demands, and making decisions on doctors and tests and second opinions, as a whole list of things that are taken away from us under Obamacare. All of that, for what? So that we have a federal mandate that children must stay on our insurance until age 26? I want mine to grow up, as a matter of fact.

And then, going on down the line, preexisting conditions, the states can address that constitutionally far better than the federal government, and that’s how it should be addressed.

I think that there is a legitimate argument to be made about whether or not the Affordability Care Act is constitutional. It is when you start making up what’s in the act that I have a problem. There is no mandate that children must be on anyone’s insurance until age 26. This is a complete misreading of the bill. Instead, parents have the ability to keep kids on their insurance, if they want to, until age 26.

The Bill specifically states that you have the power to choose your own doctor and your own hospital. To state otherwise is a lie.