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September 16th, 2009
Last week we (or “current resident”) received a slick 4-color 6×10 card stock mailer that looks at first glance to have come from our NC-11 congressional rep, Heath Shuler. At the top the reverse-on-blue header reads:
“Congressman Shuler Is Fighting To Make Medicare Prescription Coverage Even Better”
and on the bottom reverse-on-red the italicized message reads:
“Call Congressman Health Shuler today at 202-224-3121. Tell him thanks for fighting to improve Medicare without making seniors pay more, and ask him to keep on fighting until we get the job done.”
The wording struck me a little odd. Why would Heath tell me to thank him for his notably atrocious Blue Dog position on health care reform? I mean, it’s not like he cares what Democrats in his district have to say about the issue. So I flipped the mailer over and read on the bottom of the address/postage space:
“Paid for by Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America.”
Whoa. Billy Tauzin’s notorious PhRMA lobby. The one that got a secret back-room deal with Obama before this issue ever got to committees in the House and Senate. And who are now sending deceptive mailers like this all over the country as part of a $150 million PR campaign to promote their continued obscene profits on the backs of senior citizens, while the mandate to force all citizens to purchase junk policies from the for-profit insurance industry amounts to a ~$12,000 per year (plus steep annual hikes at four or more times the rate of inflation) tax increase on the middle class. Earmarked directly to the Murder-by-Spreadsheet crime syndicate, this porker is uglier than Hogzilla.
FACT: According to an analysis of the proposed Part D changes by the Wall Street Journal, the Congressional Budget Office concluded that any decrease in average spending on prescriptions by seniors will more than be made up for by an increase in premiums seniors must pay for Part D. CBS News reported that CBO has confirmed seniors will be paying 20% more for Part D coverage by 2019 under this giveaway to Big Pharma.
FACT: The Baucus plan also abets another huge giveaway to insurers by allowing them to charge older people (age 50-64) up to five times as much as younger people for the insurance policies everyone will be required to purchase.
FACT: The per capita (per person) cost of ALL health care in the U.S. per year comes to right about $3,750. That is all care, for all people, insured and uninsured, Medicare, VA, Medicaid, SCHIP and charity. Why would anyone want to pay $12,000 a year for what actually costs $3,750? A government-run single-payer system could be paid for by graduated taxation based on actual costs and those taxes would be far cheaper even to the richest of the rich than the cost of a single for-profit insurance policy.
According to figures from the Center for Responsive Politics Shuler has received the following contributions from shady players:
$195,262 from the health sector employees and PACs.
$13,750 from health insurance companies.
$74,800 from Big Pharma.
$77,062 from health professionals.
$27,900 from hospitals.
$10,500 from the nursing home industry.
$399,274 in total. Now, the figures from CRP are what the Blue Dogs (individually) have received since 1989 from the PACs and pools of various health related industries, but Shuler’s only been in office since 2007. So that’s quite the hefty haul over less than three years!
Below is the letter I have written in response to this blatant insult from the Drug Pusher’s Union Propaganda Squad…
Continue reading »
July 16th, 2009
Soon to be ex-Alaska governor Sarah Palin has an op-ed published in the WaPo today [July 14] that obviously wasn’t written by Lady SaladMaster, and which derides Obama’s cap and trade policy while promoting ‘the usual’. Drill, drill, drill plus mountain destruction for un-clean coal and going nuclear. While I understand this attempt to keep herself in the ‘Puglican lineup of erstwhile power brokers even in her new persona as a Quitter Extraordinaire, I’d like to take on some of her ghost-writer’s points.Biofuels, Climate Change, Economics, Energy, Humor, Hypocrisy, Media, Nuclear Power, Propaganda, Sarah Palin | Comments Off
June 11th, 2009
I wrote on June 3 about the murder of Dr. George Tiller in a Lutheran church in Wichita, Kansas. This week another right-wing terrorist – a notorious hater revered in places like Free Republic and Red State but labeled far too extremist by the neo-nazi group Stormfront – walked into the Holocaust Museum in the nation’s capital and opened fire, killing a security guard. In April of this year a younger neo-nazi wingnut hater killed three Pittsburgh police officers in a suicidal shoot-out because he was afraid Barack Obama was going to take away his guns.
Right wing domestic terrorism is all too familiar in this country. Timothy McVeigh was the most notable in terms of body count, but certainly was not the first or last of his ilk. The problem is present at all times, but the most deadly attacks happen more frequently when there’s a Democrat in the White House. The right wing propaganda machine (a.k.a. FoxNews) provides the verbal incitement, the loyal-but-stupid wannabe Rambos among Fox’s white sheet and dunce cap fan base do the shooting and bombing.Anti-Semitism, Corruption, Hate Crime, Hate Speech, Outrage, Politics of Hate, Propaganda, Terrorism | Comment (0)
October 31st, 2008
Janis Joplin once sang someone else’s song very poignantly – “Freedom’s just another word for nothin’ left to lose…” – and that’s semi-true in my experience. We all make choices about what’s important in our lives, and usually become enslaved to that which we choose. At the low end of the scale there’s never enough, just paying the bills is a constant struggle. At the high end of the scale there is also never enough. The thirst for more and more and more rules lives and ruins them too.
As Wall Street melts down we’re suddenly informed we must Spend, Spend, Spend!!! They can never make up their minds. Either we’re not saving enough or we’re not spending enough, it’s always our fault. I call bullshit. Slave wages have not even kept up with the cost of living, they can’t have it both ways.
I read about a 50-something day care worker yesterday who a coworker noticed sitting in the corner crying. When asked what’s wrong, she finally said she couldn’t feel her face. The coworker was alarmed, saw one side of her face drooping as they were talking, speech slurring. She drove her friend to the hospital, but the woman just cried harder and wouldn’t get out of the car. Said yes, she must be having a stroke, but if she walked in the door she’d lose everything – house, car, meager income (job)… she was terrified. Her friend finally talked her into going, she is still in the hospital and her coworkers are trying very hard to raise the tens of thousands she’ll need to pay for the care. There is no insurance at that end of the scale.Barack Obama, Class War, Corruption, Depression, Economics, Eugenics, Foreign Policy, Gay Rights, Hate Speech, History, Hypocrisy, Market Crash, Osama bin Laden, Outrage, Politics of Hate, Propaganda, Religion, Sarah Palin, Universal Care, Voting Rights, War | Comment (0)
July 8th, 2008
Before my beloved Father-in-Law died, my ‘challenging’ Mother-in-Law was one of my more inspiring (and intimidating) role models. She’d occasionally vote Republican (which Dad ALWAYS did), but more often went Democratic for reasons of weighed value to more inclusive values and concerns for all citizens, even if the system’s not perfect. She became an ombudsman fighting for the rights of nursing home patients, she sat on the local zoning board, and she was never afraid to give elected officials – any denomination – a piece of her ample mind whenever they deserved it.
But then the love of her life died, and she’s been lonely ever since. In clinging to something of him and his views of life, she became addicted to Fox News, which – it has been noted many times – is the most successful mass propaganda/mind-control experiment ever deployed by partisan human beings against members of their own species. It has turned her into a regular O’Reilly puppet, victim of subliminal programming, a hater of all who are different or disagree. She was someone who never had a hateful bone in her body in all her years before reaching her late 70s and falling to this addiction.
She’ll be 86 this year. We’ve got to go visit and do what we can to get her some help around the house or live-in care, since she’s too stubborn to do it herself, too independent to go to “The Home,” and still in possession of most of her mental faculties Fox hasn’t yet stolen from her. It’s very sad to see this wonderfully smart, able, strong and loving person become a grim, insulated hater. She hates gays, immigrants, blacks, Muslims, Democrats, the French… anybody Bill O’Reilly tells her to hate. Which – even more sadly – now includes her own children. My husband and I (confirmed liberals) as well as his younger brother, who is a conservative Baptist preacher with his own SBC church! Very strange.
She’s alienated her family, her friends… people she’s known for decades or for their entire lives. I believe it’s a crime to prey on people like Fox does. It does real harm to real people, and they’re doing it purely for the profit. They should be stopped, a treatment for the mind-disease they’ve caused should be high on the list of urgent NIH projects.Corruption, Hate Speech, Media, Politics of Hate, Propaganda, Republicans, Slime Machine, Talking Heads | Comment (0)
April 17th, 2008
The ABC Democratic Debate in Philly on Wednesday night (April 16) was by all accounts a travesty of petty distractions and blatant pandering. Who’s not so bright idea was it to have George Stephanopolis as a moderator for a Clinton? Gag me…
Luckily, the event was blocked out here in North Carolina, where early voting opened today and the crowds are already considerable. I checked my sites today on the state BoE website, where the banner now displays a running total of registrations. Democrats are running nearly 2 to 1 over Republicans, with a million and a quarter Independents.
Now, North Carolina likes to split its tickets. We consistently go for Democratic state government and my locality is solidly Dem. But for as long as I’ve lived here – yes, I’m ashamed to say I lived through the last throes of the Jesse Helms empire – NC has gong solidly Republican for President and Senate. Except when John Edwards finally took the pig farmer down, but he didn’t stay long and we ended up with Liz Dole. But from what I’ve seen, this year our millions of bitter small town and rural people just might go Dem well beyond the margin of error that allows elections to be stolen. And the Dem who will make that happen is Barack Obama. He’s going to sweep our primary, then he’s going to take the state.
Anyway, here’s a video of what Barack Obama said today in Raleigh, where he proved that Pennsylvania isn’t the only state that counts right now. Hillary and ABC have given him a significant talking point he can hammer from now ’til November – what’s wrong with American Political Discourse (and the mainstream media) in this country. Just more reasons for change!Filed under Analysis, Barack Obama, Campaigns, Debates, Hillary Clinton, Media, Party Primaries, Propaganda, Slime Machine | Comment (0)
April 10th, 2008
…all the respect it deserves
In the wake of China’s crackdown on civilians and Buddhist monks and priests in Tibet, its links to Myanmar’s military rulers and genocidal juntas in Sudan’s Darfur region, this year’s Olympic Torch Run is meeting with anti-PRC protests along its route. Protests last week in London and Paris turned violent and were met with crackdowns of their own. The flame arrived in San Francisco Wednesday morning, a city with the largest number of Chinese residents in the US, and it was met with protesters.
The Dalai Lama told reporters outside Tokyo on Wednesday that he supports China’s hosting of the Summer Olympic Games, but insisted no one has a right to tell protesters “to shut up.”
The torch run seems a particularly good target for protest of China’s dismal record on human rights. The run was invented for the 1936 games in Berlin by Carl Diem, leader of the German Olympic Committee as a favorable propaganda vehicle for Hitler’s Third Reich.
So don’t be fooled by right-wing denunciations of the ongoing protests as the torch makes its way across the globe. It is a spectacle that never occurred in ancient Greece, but was invented to serve Adolph Hitler and announce him to the world he was about to throw into massive, murderous turmoil with his dreams of conquest and hatred of ethnic minorities and Jews. Linking the torch run to its notorious beginnings is apropos as a vehicle of protest against China’s brutal policies and involvement in ethnic and religious violence across the globe.
REMINDER: Don’t forget, kiddies – This is Islamo-Fascism Awareness Week, brought to you again this year by the David Horowitz Freedom Center!Filed under China, Foreign Policy, History, Marketing, Propaganda, Protests | Comments (2)
April 3rd, 2008
Our ever-vigilant U.S. Attorney General Michael Mukasey committed a major faux-pas last week when trying to work up some crocodile tears during a speech touting “necessary” domestic spying in San Francisco. Attempting to blame a lack of power-to-spy for the 3,000 American fatalities on September 11, 2001, Mukasey revealed…
Officials “shouldn’t need a warrant when somebody with a phone in Iraq picks up a phone and calls somebody in the United States because that’s the call that we really want to know about. And before 9-11, that’s the call we didn’t know about. We knew that there was a call from someplace that was known to be a safe house in Afghanistan and we knew that it came to the United States. We didn’t know precisely where it went.”
Holy Moley, Batman!!! Did the AG just tell us something nobody in the BushCo administration bothered to tell the 9-11 Commission during its investigation? That US officials KNEW of a call from an Al Queda “safe house” in Afghanistan to someone in the United States, but didn’t listen in because they were scared of breaking the law?
Is Mukasey trying to tell us that US intelligence agencies – including NSA who monitors virtually ALL telecommunications, and the CIA who knows where Al Queda’s “safe houses” are – have no understanding of the FISA law that has been on the books since 1978? What in the world DO they teach these spooks at training camp?9-11, al Quaeda, Appointees, Hypocrisy, Intelligence, Propaganda | Comment (1)
March 29th, 2008
It never ceases to annoy me that the politicians (yes in my own democratic party this time) freely use scare tactics and other forms of gross manipulative techniques to win votes. This pragmatic, whatever works mindset is exactly what got our country to the point of being governed by big business.Advertising, Commercials, Marketing, Propaganda | Comment (0)
March 7th, 2008
Hillary Clinton Claiming “Experience” She Doesn’t Own
I have a framed, surprisingly personal letter of thanks on the office wall signed – not stamped – by President Bill Clinton. It came in reply to a short email we sent one Christmas when he was being perpetually impeached for lying and obfuscating about his large “bimbo problem.” We sent holiday greetings from our family to his, along with a post script asking him please not to resign. Hillary didn’t respond or add her signature to the letter, even though the email was to them both and all four of us attached our names. Just not all that involved in White House life or her own personal life, I supposed at the time.
I personally wondered during those times what the deal was with her. Protecting the privacy of your dysfunctional marriage is one thing, but private is not something Bill’s amorous adventures were. Had she no pride? No ambitions for herself? No common sense?
This last year has informed me that she’s turned Bill’s bad behavior into a debt “owed” to her, and she’s projected that onto America in general too. News flash to Hillary Clinton: I don’t owe you a darned thing.Barack Obama, Campaigns, Caucuses, Hillary Clinton, Presidential Candidates, Propaganda | Comment (1)