Friday, July 31, 2009

GOP Health Care Lie: Killing Old People

Ok this particular lie is so lacking in common sense it actually scares me that people are stupid enough to believe this at all.(But then again the birthers exist so stupidity is obviously rampant.) But yet there are people sucking it in hook, line and sinker. Even worse there are right ring radio blow hards and even Congress people spreading this lie.

One of their newest tricks is to cite page numbers of the bill to give their lie legitimacy knowing of course very few will actually look to see what it says.

Now what is actually in the bill is a benefit that allows for the payment for end of life counseling no more then once every 5 years if you want it. End of life counseling is something a patient would request if and only if they want it. It in no way is required. And what is end of life counseling exactly? It is to allow you to create a living will. Living wills were created by GOP legislators many years ago. A living will simpley states who can make decisions for you should you be incapacitated and what extraordinary life extending procedures you would or would not want done.

There is nothing in this part of the bill that includes any government involvement at all other then it will be paid for if you choose to have such a counseling appointment with your own doctor.

Why does the "Right" always resort to lies? Because when they debate based on fact, they lose.

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GOP Health Care Reform Lie: Abortion

Once again those on the right and the GOP are playing political games to try to keep Americans from looking at the facts and their own self interests in the Health Care Debate. Their latest tactic was attempting a red herring amendment on Abortion.

Here are the facts. There is a 1976 Federal Law called the Hyde amendment that prohibits any Federal Funds to ever be used for abortions. To pass a law that requires otherwise would require a repeal of that amendment. There is no such repeal included in any version of the health care legislation. In fact because it is the law it was and it is a non issue, the word or any reference to abortion did not exist in any version of the bill. But it is now thanks to the GOP. They attempted to put an amendment in the bill which would not only restate needlessly the existing federal law but to prohibit any private insurance company to pay for abortions as well. (Talk about Federal Govt getting between you and your doctor) This amendment was defeated. There is now compromise language in this version of the bill which restates needlessy that no Federal funds would be used for abortion but also states that there is no prevention on private insurance on paying for the procedure.

Now why did the GOP to do this. So they could distort what the amendment actually was and trash congressmen like Ohio 18th district Congressman Zack Space for voting against it. If you want proof do a google search on Zack Space and Abortion and you will find right wing extremist blogs all over this distortion. They of course fail to mention that it is illegal for federal money to pay for abortions period.

This is similar to the red herring gay marriage law that was put on the ballot in Ohio in 2004. They put a law on the ballot to fire up the Christian Right over the gay marriage issue. The fact was the constitution of the State Of Ohio already prevented gay marriage, so this law was useless.

To me the most hypocritical of any group I have seen on the health care debate is the Family Research Council. This "Christian" Group is running and ad claiming the Health Care Reform bill will be paying for abortions. This is an outright lie. Since when is lying ok for a christian?

Why does the "Right" always resort to lies? Because when they debate based on fact, they lose.

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Another Obama Success

With just over 6 months in office President Obama is quickly showing to be one of the most successful and effective Presidents our nation has had in a long time. Despite the unprecedented mess he was left with by the failures of the Bush Administration he has quickly and effectively dealt with each one with speed and effectiveness.

The newest clear success has been the "cash for clunkers" program. This rebate program to stimulate sales in the ailing auto industry and remove more gas guzzlers from the road replacing with more fuel efficient vehicles, has been a bigger success then anyone dreamed. 1 billion dollars has flowed into our economy in 4 days. This has helped the auto industry, improved our fuel consumption, saved jobs, and helped individuals economically by saving them money at the gas pumps.

Another success is Iraq. A year ago he was practically being accused of being a traitor for wanting to get out troops out of Iraq. Now a leading Colonel has stated things are such we should leave now. What is more amazing many on the right are now suddenly agreeing. In short Obama's Iraq strategy has been a huge success so far.

The Banks were on the brink of failure. Massive tax dollars were spent propping this greedy inefficient institutions from the brink of collapsing our economy. Now in 7 short months, those banks are paying back the money. Who would have believed that would happen that fast when Obama took office.

GM and Chrysler were both in huge trouble. The failure of these two companies could have cost up to 3 million jobs. The President was blasted for his actions. Yet today we have two companies that have quickly gone through reorganization and are on their feet and reopening plants. Another disaster averted and a successful policy by our President.

Finally the Stimulus Package. Despite the lies and misinformation being spread by the right the two year plan of the American Recovery Act is right on schedule. Only 25% of the way in time wise, 20% of the funds have been spent. All over the country Infrastructure is being repaired, Schools being fixed or refurbished, cops put on the streets, jobs are being created in construction, engineering, architecture and many other sectors. Republican Governors all over the country are verbally trashing the stimulus as they do photo ops giving giant size checks, taking credit for it. If the first 6 months of this plan is any indication, the stimulus plan will show to be another huge success.

One of the biggest frustrations Americans have with politicians is that they make promises as they campaign that they never live up to. Obama is clearly fulfilling the promises he made to the American People.

Now on to Health Care Reform!

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Thursday, July 30, 2009

Hate Talk WTVN

With a line up of Glenn Back, Rush, and Hannity perhaps this would be a more accurate logo for WTVN Radio in Columbus

Advertisers that pay for this crap to pollute that airwaves are:
The Central Ohio Chevy Dealers
Dunkins Donuts
City Barbeque

Since I refuse to listen to the station perhaps others have more advertisers to list in comments.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

OH 18: Space gets on Board, finally

18th district Congressman Zack Space after being one of the "blue dogs" blocking progress on Health Care Reform, finally got on board today and is supporting a compromise.

Good job to all that kept the pressure on the Congressman.

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Tuesday, July 28, 2009

OH 18:Space Raises Contributions from Insurance Industy

Why is Ohio Congressmen Zack Space dragging his feet on health care despite the fact that 17% of the people in his district do not have health care? Perhaps its the over $200,000 in campaign donations he has raised from Health and Insurance Interests.

What every happened to his pledge not to take money from lobbyists.

Space and the Blue Dogs are betraying their voters and supporters on perhaps the most important issue facing Congress in Space's 2 1/2 years in office.

Unless he changes the path he is on soon, there will be no third term for Space.

source: The Public Campaign Action Fund

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No Public Option No Reform

Today the Senate Finance committee took the public option out of the Health Care Reform bill. Which means what is left is no reform at all. Who are these Senators listening to?

72% of Americans in recent polling want a public option. The only people that do not want it is the Insurance Companies who are making record profits and the Republicans who clearly are their lap dogs.

The clearest evidence of this was all the Republicans that were quoting what they called an "Independent Health Group" called the Lewin Group on the house floor in interviews and in speeches. The Lewin group is in reality a wholly owned subsidiary of United Health Corporation. This is the Insurance company that reported an $859 Million profit in the second quarter this year up 155%. This on the backs of Americans which results in 1 out of 3 Bankruptcies in the U.S. to be due to Health Care Costs.

On top of this instead of working to solve the clear health care problem that touches every American using facts and hard work to come to solutions, Republicans ,tell lies and make distortions for one purpose to defeat it. Using words like Socialism which a public option is clearly not, making threats about Government being between a Doctor and Patient which this bill clearly does not do, and even crazy accusations like one made by a Republican Congresswoman today from the House Floor claiming this heatlh care bill has provisions to kill the elderly!

So what are the Blue Dog Democrat's motivation. Bi partisanship? This is bunk. The Republicans have made it clear that they want anything Obama does to fail. A number of them won't even discourage the nut jobs in their party screaming about birth Certificates. There is clearly going to be no bi-partisanship on this or anything else on the President's agenda.

Yet despite that Democrats have already compromised. First after 55 years of trying to get national health care, 14,000 losing their Insurance every day, the Republicans along with helpful Democrats are delaying action on this bill. In addition many Americans want a single payer health care system. One that has been proven effective in almost every industrialized nation in the world. Yet there was a willing to compromise on this "public option." Now they want to take that away.

Gutting health care reform to be "bi partisan" will result in solving nothing. It will leave Americans uninsured. It will result in higher and higher insurance premiums for all and it will lead to more and more bankruptcy and will continue to put our businesses at a competitive disadvantage. In the end it will bankrupt our economy overall.

There is an old adage "Lead, Follow or Get out of the way." Clearly the Republicans are neither going to Lead or follow so it is up to the Democrats to get it done and Force the Republicans to "get out of the way."

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Friday, July 24, 2009

OH 18:Space blocking passage of health care

While the Republicans are spewing lies and distortions with only politics in mind. Democrats are working hard to finally pass the legislation that they have worked now for decades. But who is blocking them in the House Energy and Commerce Committee? Zack Space and the Blue Dog democrats.

There is no excuse for Space to be working against the people of his district who have seen their health care costs and prices sky rocket. There is no excuse for Space to delay Health Care reform that will help the rising number of unemployed in his district. Every day thousands are losing their health insurance and Zack Space has decided to block progress rather then get the legislation done that over 70% of the country clearly supports.

So who is Zack Space working for since its clearly not his constituents. Is it the the large hospital corporations that have taken over health care in the 18th district. Is it the Insurance companies that reported record profits this week?

We are watching you Zack Space, we expect you to be a Democrat not a Republican in blue clothing that only is concerned about the profits of the health corporations.

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When Race Clouds Judgement

There is a lot being made about the arrest of Professor Henry Gates by Sergeant James Crowley of the Cambridge Massachusetts police department. Obviously I have no personal information about the particular incident. Yet based on media reports and my own life experiences I do have a strong belief as to what happened.

As we go through our days and lives we fill our emotional bucket with thoughts, beliefs and frustrations. They are from various events in our lives that may or may not be random and have nothing to do with each other. Then at times that bucket gets full and something causes it do dump in often a very messy way. That is what I believe happened on both sides.

Dr Gates is a black man in America. He is very aware through his own experiences and studies and research that often black men are indeed treated differently by law enforcement. Statistics clearly show this there can be no dispute on this fact. Add to this his house had been recently broken into. Then after a long trip he comes home and is locked out of his house and has to break in. This would be a bad day for anyone. Suddenly a police officer shows up at his door and his bucket dumped.

Sergeant Crowley is a law enforcement officer. Just that fact alone results in experiences and events that put things in his bucket. Add to that there had been a rash of burglaries in this neighborhood. Sergeant Crowley has had a stellar record on racial issues and in fact teaches other officers how do deal with such attitudes. No doubt he is proud of his record on race relations. Then suddenly on a routine breaking and entering check, he gets hit with Professor Gates bucket and he is offended and his bucket dumps on the Professor.

I can very much relate to how Sergeant Crowley probably felt. I feel I have lived my life and have acted in all I have done professionally and personally to both understand the issues of race in our lives and to make sure that I did not allow it to cloud my judgement. It is something about me that I have always been proud of. Despite that I have had incidents where someone wrongly, accused me of racist behavior. I was both hurt, offended and angry.

Who is wrong here? In my opinion both. Dr Gates should not have been so quick to assume the officer was acting based on racial profiling and no way should this respected college professor ended up in the Sergeant's handcuffs.

They both should have known better, but then we all should when we act "stupidly" when we dump our own buckets.

As far as President Obama's comments on the issue. First of all he did not call Sergeant Crowley racist. He admitted he did not know the details of what occurred. But he also admitted that Dr Gates was a personal friend. Much like all of us he stood by his friend. He also discussed the true fact that racial profiling does exists and is a real problem in our society. What was the "stupid" act that he refereed to is that the 58 year old college professor who walks with a cane ended up arrested in his own home.

Now what? I believe that Dr Gates and Sergeant Crowley need to pick up their buckets and sit down and talk. Then need to reach out and try to understand each other and what truly lead to the disastrous result. By doing this not only will both men grow from it personally but perhaps the country will as well.

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Thursday, July 23, 2009

Health Care Rally in Zanesville Times Recorder

An article appeared in the Zanesville Times Recorder reporting on the Health Care Rally at Zack Space's Zanesville office that took place yesterday. I was quoted in that article. Here is what appeared in the newspaper.

A rally of about 10 people with Progress Ohio formed outside Space's office on Main Street.

One of them was Joe Ritchey Jr. of Zanesville.

"I want Space to know that as a self-employed resident with no health problems, I'm still paying 20 percent of my income for health insurance," Ritchey said. "I know people who are going bankrupt because they get sick and then have to pay hospital bills. There are people who have worked all their lives, did everything right, get sick and end up losing everything. We're having to make decisions on our health based on expense and that's wrong."

Ritchey said he knows Space is hearing a lot of opposition and was at the rally to remind him that his supporters were watching.

"We voted him in, and we're going to be the ones who decide whether to re-elect him or not," Ritchey said.

I was slightly misquoted in two places and I would like to correct them. First I said that 20% of my income was for health care expenses including insurance, not just insurance as reported. Secondly I specifically stated that we helped get Zack Space Elected rather than "We voted him in" as I though a supporter and donor to his campaign I am not a resident of the 18th district.

source: Zanesville Times Recorder "Supporters rally for Space, health-care reform"

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Wednesday, July 22, 2009

OH 18:Citizens to Space, "Fix It Now!"

I attended a rally organized by ProgessOhio and Ohio Citizens for Health at the Office of Congressman Zack Space in Zanesville at lunch hour today. In attendance were citizens of various ages and income levels from several counties within and outside Ohio's 15th district.

To reporters from WHIZ and WOUB television and the Zanesville Times Recorder these citizens expressed their own personal stories for being there. The common thread was that health care is broken, that it must be fixed and we expect Congressman Space to support the House Bill on Health Care Reform.

We along with Mayor Butch Zwelling of Zanesville were invited into the Congressman's office to meet with a member of his staff. A packet of letters in support of Health Care Reform compiled by Progress Ohio were submitted to him and several citizens spoke.

It was made clear by the Citizens that Obama and Space were elected to office by people like those in attendance today to take action on Health Care. Our support for the Congressman was expressed as well as was desire to continue such support for him based on his votes on health care reform.

We were presented with a position paper by the Congressman's staffer that in short expresses a desire for health care reform but also aspects of the current bill that the Congressman seeks to improve.

Improvement is fine Congressman, but blocking action is not acceptable to any of us that were in attendance.

Because of the attendance and media coverage it was clearly a worthwhile effective event to promote health care reform.

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Saturday, July 18, 2009

The End of an Era in Journalism

As I stroll through all the various channels of stations that are news channels or claim to be, it distresses me. I see the anchors we have now, ones that don't even seem to attempt to hide their own political views. Ones that clearly have agendas most on the right but even some on the left. That as Americans we are almost forced to pick who to listen to, not based on who gives us the facts but who we agree with.

It wasn't always that way.

The passing of Walter Cronkite makes me yearn for an era where there was an anchor that Americans trusted regardless of our political views. We knew he would present the news of the day that was important and would communicate it to us in a factual way.

We as citizens are much worse off then we were in that era. Despite the fact there is are exponentially more sources and hours of news. It is almost impossible to find simply the facts. Those of us that make the effort have to filter through many sources and use our own skills to weed through all the information factual and not to determine the truth.

Unfortunately most Americans don't put that much effort into it. They just take in the misinformation and distortions and choose to believe them. Politics has become not a promotion of ideas and visions but more of a attempt to find sound bites that voters will believe, regardless of the truth.

Perhaps the election of Barack Obama despite all the distortions and misinformation and smears that were thrown against him, are a sign that Americans are sick of being lied to and are putting much more effort into finding the truth. Yet every day I hear people still repeat Faux Newsisms and Rushisms as fact.

I will miss Walter Cronkite. Perhaps his passing will cause many to look back and reflect on what journalism was and should be again. That's all I can hope for.

God's Speed Walter.

And that's that way it is.


Thursday, July 16, 2009

OH:07 Austria Dishonest In Newsletter

Congressman Steve Austria using a typical RepubOILcan Faux News like tactic, used taxpayer funds to send out a newsletter dishonestly posting the following as his quote of the week:

"Under my plan of a cap and trade system, electricity rates will necessarily skyrocket." -President Barack Obama

Now here is the truth about this quote. This was taken from an interview from January 2008 that Candidate Obama gave to the San Fransisco Chronicle. It was taken completely out of context. The point he was making is that changing over our old polluting ways of producing electricity will cost money in the short term but as new technologies and sources of energy are developed the long term effect on the economy will be positive.

Here is the actual video in context not chopped up like Austria and the RepubOILcans have been doing.

What Austria and the RepubOILcans have yet to learn is Americans are not stupid and we are tired of being lied to. Our nations dependency on fossil fuels as used currently is a huge problem for not only the climate, the economy and national security. We will no longer accept the lies of Austria and his cronies who tell us to do nothing and the problems will magically go away with no cost.

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