And now the 2nd act of the healthcare bill: (in Debates)


QBRanger March 22 2010 8:11 PM EDT

http://www.cnn.com/2010/POLITICS/03/22/health.care.lawsuit/index.html?eref=igoogle_cnn

It will be very interesting to see what happens if/when the Supreme Court strikes down the individual mandate as unconstitutional.

However, if we did healthcare reform as a BIpartisan affair, like the Chosen One promised while campaigning, this would not be an issue.

What a way to divide a country!

Lord Bob March 22 2010 8:34 PM EDT

As somebody who did not endorse the mandate section, I won't be disappointed if any of these lawsuits overturns that portion of the bill.

However, I will point out that Ranger's post is, again, more Glenn Beck style vitriol aimed at those he disagrees with than an attempt at provoking a reasonable discussion. What a shame that his delivery remains so poor, even when we would otherwise find common ground.

AdminQBVerifex [Serenity In Chaos] March 22 2010 8:39 PM EDT

I'm a little interested to know why McKenna would get involved in this big clustercrap. He was one of the few republican dudes I actually did dig over the other sides offering. He was always a really amazingly detailed and well put together AG. They have had him on NPR here a fair number of times to talk about state issues and it's always cool to hear how many things he is tackling. But I can't help but feel like this is going to take a disproportionate amount of his time if he follows this one through.

Demigod March 22 2010 8:52 PM EDT

I've got to go with LB on this one. I never read the massive bill, and to filter out the ridiculous amount of bias from both sides, I tried to only read the factual info about it. That left me wondering how fining those who still couldn't afford insurance (eg, self employed with failing business) would actually go down.

Unless there's a viable catch-all, let it test in court.

QBRanger March 22 2010 9:19 PM EDT

when we would otherwise find common ground.

There is no common ground, I am sorry to say, given the uni-partisan approach in the way this bill was concocted and passed. The whole process from start to finish just disgusted me. So in all reality we are polar opposites on our views.

While I agree with quite a few of the provisions in the bill, the overall bill is very flawed in its design, cost, and approach.

The individual mandate is one of the most essential parts of the bill. One needs healthy people in the insurance pool to lower the overall risk. If the mandate is stuck from the bill, premiums will skyrocket for those that still choose to carry insurance. More and more people will opt out of maintaining insurance since they can get it any time, even after they have been diagnosed with cancer, heart disease, diabetes, etc.
I'm a little interested to know why McKenna would get involved in this big clustercrap. He was one of the few republican dudes I actually did dig over the other sides offering.


It makes unsustainable assumptions for which the CBO had to, by law, to include in its estimates. The real cost will be far more and individual states have to currently spend more on Medicaid by national law. Which some teetering on bankruptcy cannot.

So McKenna is likely trying to look out for Washington, is and trying to get this bill/law ruled unconstitutional.

This will be another great way to learn about how our system really works. I learned more this last year then all my time in school.

Admindudemus [jabberwocky] March 22 2010 9:32 PM EDT

the courts upheld wiretaps and eavesdropping as well as military tribunals but struck down rendition and torture. in my opinion it is really a toss-up as to how they will come down on this matter.

the country was already divided and really couldn't become any more so. all we have to do is look at the last few presidential elections and campaigns.

the recent history in america seems to be that we have extremes in both parties and a larger population of centrist ideas. one party gets in power, does its thing and upsets enough of the other side to get out the vote next time and switch some or all of the branches of government with the centrists moving back and forth due to disenchantment with both parties.

in short, the lesser of the evils tends to be the one who isn't in power at the time. as for bi-partisanship, about the only way they engage in that is by force when we fail to give them all of the branches at the same time.

Lord Bob March 22 2010 9:34 PM EDT

There is no common ground, I am sorry to say, given the uni-partisan approach in the way this bill was concocted and passed.

I was more referring to those of us from differing sides on this thread, and I had wrongly assumed you were also against the mandate. I am against it, ironically, for the reasons pointed out by many Republicans, though I obviously supported the bill as a whole.

Still, I've noticed that your tone in this last post is remarkably improved, and for that I am grateful, even if we disagree on the specifics of the reform itself.

Lord Bob March 22 2010 9:40 PM EDT

the courts upheld wiretaps and eavesdropping as well as military tribunals but struck down rendition and torture. in my opinion it is really a toss-up as to how they will come down on this matter.

The Supreme Court is 5 - 4 conservative, however. They will likely lean toward the Republicans.

And as yet another reminder on the issue of bipartisanship:
The Republicans showed ZERO bipartisanship to the Democrats during the Bush years.
And the Bush redistributive tax cuts for the ultra wealthy were passed using reconciliation.

QBRanger March 22 2010 9:54 PM EDT

in short, the lesser of the evils tends to be the one who isn't in power at the time. as for bi-partisanship, about the only way they engage in that is by force when we fail to give them all of the branches at the same time.

That is not very truthful.

There have been numerous laws passed with bipartisan support.

Even the new "Jobs Bill" or "Second Stimulus" passed with 11 out of 41 Republicans voting yes. A real bipartisan law. Of course there are lunatics at both end of the spectrum who will vote no, no matter what.

The whole process of how HR 3590 was put together and eventually passed lacks any attempt at a bipartisan approach. Every amendment put forth by Republican from committee to final passage was dismissed by party line vote.

When the bill makes sense, it gets some Republican support. When it is just bad law, it gets none.

However, this was the way Democrats could do things given the seats in the Senate. Once the Mass election came, one would have thought the country was sending Obama a clear message to shift to the middle and get the bipartisan support, of which he campaigned endlessly.

And yet, despite what I feel was a very easy message to see, he and the Democrats proceeded to jam this horrible bill/law down American's throat. With all the subsequent polls stating it was upsides down.

The arrogance of the Democratic party is what I feel has brought the end of significant bipartisan cooperation at least till November.

Certainly there were some Republican who are going to vote no. But others, such as Collins or Snowe were willing to cross the aisle if the legislation is somewhat decent. They were the only current Republican votes on HR 1. But for this bill, even they could not vote for it.

All the while, jobs took a back burner. Which is perhaps a worse crime than passing this bill.

QBRanger March 22 2010 10:10 PM EDT

The Republicans showed ZERO bipartisanship to the Democrats during the Bush years. And the Bush redistributive tax cuts for the ultra wealthy were passed using reconciliation.

Again some misunderstanding of things.

The Republicans had a majority for some of the Bush Years and none the last 2. But still to get Policy Legislation, there certainly had to be bipartisanship.

The Bush tax cuts were easily allowed under reconciliation. In the House 10 Democrats votes yes. 15 Senate Democrats votes yes as well. Bipartisanship.

HR 3590 received zero Republican votes in both houses. Also reconciliation is not meant for Policy Legislation to be passed. Only Fiscal Policy.

Personally I am against the individual mandate. Perhaps for reasons other than yours. I see it as another government intrusion into my life, my liberty and my freedom. If I want to be insured, I can. If not, it is my right not to be forced to buy something.

If the government can force you to buy insurance, what is next? Can they say "Our auto makers, which we now own, need a boost", and mandate everyone who buys a new car buys a Chevy? An extreme example, but this individual mandate gets us on that path.

Never before has Congress told the people that we have to buy something just because we exist.

And as stated earlier, without an individual mandate, the whole bill/law falls under the burden of cost. Healthy people have to pay into the system for it to work.

AdminNightStrike March 22 2010 10:14 PM EDT

It makes unsustainable assumptions for which the CBO had to, by law, to include in its estimates. The real cost will be far more and individual states have to currently spend more on Medicaid by national law. Which some teetering on bankruptcy cannot.



Can you rephrase this, or expand on it? I can't figure out what you mean.

Admindudemus [jabberwocky] March 22 2010 10:14 PM EDT

And the Bush redistributive tax cuts for the ultra wealthy were passed using reconciliation.


that is more what i meant by forcing bi-partisanship. in any presidency there will be key issues either stressed by candidates during the campaign (democrats and health reform) or just so in-grained in the party platform (republicans and tax cuts for the wealthy) that a president feels it is key for him to get something passed.

the other side often knows what these key issues are and that makes it virtually impossible for there to be a bi-partisan effort to pass said issues. as i have stated in the past, if the republicans wanted a bi-partisan solution to healthcare reform they could have tackled it when in the majority. they also could have brought their own plan to the table.

in short, imho it is politics as usual and acting like the current administration is certainly not the first to engage in such activities. i doubt this will be the last time it happens as well.

QBRanger March 22 2010 10:48 PM EDT

Can you rephrase this, or expand on it? I can't figure out what you mean.

This is the best article that sums up most of the problems with the CBO report:

http://reason.com/archives/2010/03/22/the-lie-of-fiscal-responsibili

To expand a bit. Does anyone think Congress in 2017 will really let the Cadillac Tax take effect? Of course not, they will cave under union pressure to remove it. So all that revenue that the CBO was forced to use will never see the treasury.

in short, imho it is politics as usual and acting like the current administration is certainly not the first to engage in such activities.

This is the first social bill of this magnitude that has passed with one party support. Medicare, Social Security, Civil Rights have all passed with large Republican support. HR 3590 had zero Republican support. This is setting a very bad precedent for the future.

As to why the Republican did not attack health care the last 8 years, perhaps it is not quite the emergency Obama made it out to be. Other policies at the time needed to be enacted. I am not saying that was correct since as a physician, I have been in many a health reform conversation over the years.

At the time, the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan were approved by over 69% of Congress. Only after incompetence in the battle plan did the public opinion turn.

I do not know all the reasons for the financial meltdown of 2007-8 to know if the Bush tax cuts were a major vs minor vs non contributor. At least not enough to make a honest commentary.

All I ask is that people put aside their "We won one for the Democrats!!" and actually read the bill. Then comment if it is still good policy. Instead of just getting any 2000 page law with a "Health Care is good" stamp on it and saying it is a job well done.

Learn all the new bureaucracies, the new taxes, the new mandates, the new assumptions and then think if this will really improve care with a decreased cost. Or will it put this country further in the financial hole.

QBRanger March 22 2010 11:02 PM EDT

that is more what i meant by forcing bi-partisanship. in any presidency there will be key issues either stressed by candidates during the campaign (democrats and health reform) or just so in-grained in the party platform (republicans and tax cuts for the wealthy) that a president feels it is key for him to get something passed.


Sorry I needed a fresh post to address this.

How can you force someone to vote how they do not want? Really do not want.

In HR 3590 Obama forced ZERO Republican to vote for it. Was Bush that much better a motivator to get some Democrat support for his agenda? I am sorry, but Obama is perhaps the greatest speaker I have watched.

In fact, Bush's tax cuts were a portion of what he really wanted. So while he could have pushed and pass it unilaterally, he relented on some issues and got bipartisan support.

One can argue that he presented false data to Congress to get their approval for the war. Perhaps. But at that time, he did get bipartisan support. Even the Patriot Act passed: 84% House and 98% Senate.

Not once during this whole health care drama did Obama, Pelosi or Reed make any attempt to work with Republicans.

Out of 4 main ideas from the Blair House summit, only 1 made it into the final bill after reconciliation passes: A bump in Medicaid payments to primary care physicians. Other ideas like undercover patients and malpractice "projects" were eliminated.

Is the main reason that Democrats are so angry at Bush, all Republican are the enemy? If so, that runs 100% opposite to the rhetoric Obama used in getting elected. Hypocrisy indeed.

There were many opportunities for Obama to work with Republican on this issue. And claim a great legacy. However, he failed, both me and my country.

Lord Bob March 22 2010 11:33 PM EDT

Once the Mass election came, one would have thought the country was sending Obama a clear message to shift to the middle and get the bipartisan support,

Except that's exactly what was not happening. This is, of course, the average Fox style interpretation of the election, but its not rooted in reality.

The Republicans had a majority for some of the Bush Years and none the last 2.

And guess which years I'm referring to?

The Bush tax cuts were easily allowed under reconciliation. In the House 10 Democrats votes yes. 15 Senate Democrats votes yes as well. Bipartisanship.

The Blue Dogs voted yes. The mainstream Democrats were certainly in opposition. Cutting taxes for the rich is not a very bipartisan idea anyway, no matter how you slice it. That's a purely right wing ideal. Gore, for example, ran on a plan to cut taxes for the middle and under classes. Moderate and progressive Democrats did not support the Bush plan.

And on the issue of bipartisanship, the Republicans are not showing an ounce of it either. There are currently 290 bills that have passed the House, some with broad bipartisan support, that are being filibustered in the Senate. Why? Just so it doesn't let Obama or the Democrats accomplish anything. It's pure politics, nothing more.
http://thehill.com/homenews/house/83059-senate-sitting-on-290-house-bills
http://www.jedreport.com/2010/02/report-senate-sitting-on-290-b.html

Personally I am against the individual mandate. Perhaps for reasons other than yours. I see it as another government intrusion into my life, my liberty and my freedom.

Oh, I was right the first time. And as noted, yes, my reasons match yours and the other Republicans. See? Common ground here.

if the republicans wanted a bi-partisan solution to healthcare reform they could have tackled it when in the majority.

Absolutely, 100% spot on.

perhaps it is not quite the emergency Obama made it out to be.

But it is. I know not only from personal experience, but from the dozens of cases I've seen where insurance companies dropped their customers and they suffered the consequences.
Like this one: http://abcnews.go.com/Health/WellnessNews/health-care-conundrum-move-alters-cancer-patients-care/story?id=10151392

QBRanger March 23 2010 12:06 AM EDT

But it is. I know not only from personal experience, but from the dozens of cases I've seen where insurance companies dropped their customers and they suffered the consequences. Like this one: http://abcnews.go.com/Health/WellnessNews/health-care-conundrum-move-alters-cancer-patients-care/story?id=10151392

LB, that article is a perfect example of my point.

The "insurer" who refused her interferon beta is none other than Medicare. The Government insurance. Rationing at its best.

This paragraph is key:
'Malkin said Oertel's case highlights several of the problems with health care in America, including a lack of portability of health insurance and a lack of respect for the treatment decisions made by doctors.'

One of the Republican suggestions was for portability of insurance. Which was discarded by the Democrats. And with the multiple new layers of bureaucracy there is more intrusion on the patient physician decision making.

This is not an isolated case with Medicare. I have seen it numerous times. This current bill/law does nothing to address this type of scenario. In fact, it enhances the probability of it happening more frequently as happens with rationing.

QBRanger March 23 2010 12:14 AM EDT

Except that's exactly what was not happening. This is, of course, the average Fox style interpretation of the election, but its not rooted in reality.

It was more than just Fox stating this. Most of the news organizations except the liberal ones were fairly consistent on this.

How a Republican won Ted Kennedy's old seat, basically running on a platform of being the 41st vote against Health Care. In a very liberal, left leaning state who had not elected a Republican senator for 30 years.

With Obama coming to Mass to help Coakley. In a state Obama won 62% of the vote in 2008.

This was not a huge signal to Obama that he was going off path? Really?

Just like the Governor races in New Jersey and Virginia were not likewise signals to the Democrats?

I do want to read what your take on the Scott Brown upset win is.

Cube March 23 2010 2:10 PM EDT

The individual mandate is one of the most essential parts of the bill. One needs healthy people in the insurance pool to lower the overall risk. If the mandate is stuck from the bill, premiums will skyrocket for those that still choose to carry insurance. More and more people will opt out of maintaining insurance since they can get it any time, even after they have been diagnosed with cancer, heart disease, diabetes, etc.

I honestly don't think this is the best way of doing things, but you can see why the provision's needed for preexisting conditions to be nixed. I would have much rather seen a public option. I felt like that's something that should have been pushed harder.

Maybe I'm idealistic about how it'd work, but I really think a public option would have been the best way to go. Even if there were waste, it would've provided some health competition.

As to why the Republican did not attack health care the last 8 years, perhaps it is not quite the emergency Obama made it out to be. Other policies at the time needed to be enacted. I am not saying that was correct since as a physician, I have been in many a health reform conversation over the years.

I think you're probably right that they were simply too preoccupied. I'm not sure how these things start, but we definitely didn't have a domestic focus at the time.

I do not know all the reasons for the financial meltdown of 2007-8 to know if the Bush tax cuts were a major vs minor vs non contributor.

I've never heard anyone accuse the Bush tax cuts for this. Genuinely curious, where you've heard that.

It will be very interesting to see what happens if/when the Supreme Court strikes down the individual mandate as unconstitutional.

As for the constitutionality, I have no idea how that will play out. I guess we'll have to wait and see.

Cube March 23 2010 2:24 PM EDT

*healthy competition

Alternatively..
*healthy health competition

VsCountStrum [Black Watch] March 23 2010 2:39 PM EDT

It is very unlikely that we will get Healthy Health Competition. It is highly probable that we will get no competition and the government will be the only one running Health Insurance in a few years.

Cube March 23 2010 2:41 PM EDT

I know that's possible, but I'd still see that as an improvement.

AdminQBVerifex [Serenity In Chaos] March 23 2010 2:46 PM EDT

Not once during this whole health care drama did Obama, Pelosi or Reed make any attempt to work with Republicans.

Why are you even saying this? Are you just repeating this text from a script or something? You just said they made no attempt to work with them, yet in the very next sentence:
Out of 4 main ideas from the Blair House summit, only 1 made it into the final bill after reconciliation passes: A bump in Medicaid payments to primary care physicians. Other ideas like undercover patients and malpractice "projects" were eliminated.

You say how they worked with them, this sounds like you aren't being honest here. Whats up with that?

VsCountStrum [Black Watch] March 23 2010 2:50 PM EDT

Cube,

I have never known a monopoly to be an improvement. I would much rather have a choice.

Cube March 23 2010 3:17 PM EDT

We currently have a monopoly, at least pretty close.

A government run program would only be a 'monopoly' because it'd be supported by tax money and thus, be cheaper. I'm not saying they should provide all the health care. I just think they should provide basic cheap plans. If you want to buy something with more coverage, you'd be able to spend the money to do so.

The government has a "monopoly" on taxes, they don't take all our money. Local governments make tolls on roads, but if they were private roads, they'd be far more expensive.

Cube March 23 2010 3:22 PM EDT

To make it more clear, there are public and private schools. What I'm discussing is something similar. Who says we can't have the same for health insurance.

Public schools are usually sufficient, but some people spend the money to send their kids to better schools even when public education is FREE.

VsCountStrum [Black Watch] March 23 2010 3:34 PM EDT

Cube,

I would disagree with you on the current monopoly. My wife and I just shopped for new Health Insurance. We had a choice of 6 different companies with many different options for each. It took us a while to figure out which was best.

As far as Public and Private schools: I do not know where you live, but Public schools in my state are horrible. The average reading age is 3.2 years below their grade. I hope that our healthcare does not fall that far under government control.


Though my issue with the HealthCare has always been the economic impact on the country more that the impact on the actual care. There will still be ways to get good care regardless of what they do.

QBsutekh137 March 23 2010 4:19 PM EDT

Strum, you are the public schools. If you don't like something about them, have you been doing something to change them? School board, meetings, etc?

Good education doesn't just appear auto-magically by doing something such as going private with it. What would you like to see in terms of education.

VsCountStrum [Black Watch] March 23 2010 4:29 PM EDT

My suggestions for Public Schools would never be accepted.

1) School accountability
2) Teach accountability
3) Parent accountability
4) Student accountability

Schools just want more money to stay open. Teachers just want to be protected by the unions and not actually teach. The Parents want the teachers and the schools to be nursemaids and do everything for the kids. The kids just want to get through the mostly useless classes that they have to take.

I am not talking about all public schools in the US, just the ones around here. There was no way that I would ever send my kid to a public school here. He is currently in a very good private school. If he had not been accepted, then I would have moved somewhere, likely Virgina where there are good public schools.

QBsutekh137 March 23 2010 4:41 PM EDT

Where is here, just curious.

In your list of things, what would be the solution for an overall education systems in terms of public vs. private? If public works in Virginia, why doesn't it work where you live? And why are private schools better? These are super-hard questions for which I have no answer (and I'm not saying you said that private was the answer...)

My main point is simply to say "tax-funded" and "government-run" don't have to be considered "bad". Taxes have done wonderful things: built the interstate system, defended the nation, built power infrastructures (e.g. TVA), and funded a lot of arts and sciences grants. Is there waste? Sure. But the bottom line is that WE are the government (that's what a democracy is. Do I wish we had a better political system? Yes. That's why I think vote reform is a good start for all of this, so that we wouldn't even have to hear the word "bi-partisan" again, because legislation would have to be passed "pan-partisan" if we all had a better vote voice.

But even in the current system, you probably have a larger voice than you think. Is it a voice that can overcome the passive apathy and disenchantment we have going these days? Probably not. But that's not a reason to assume a tax-funded health plan has to be poor.

QBsutekh137 March 23 2010 4:53 PM EDT

As far as how much the Republican party tried to work health care in a bi-partisan fashion, the last I heard (before, admittedly, tuning out) was that Republicans were stating flatly, "You have to start from scratch and do it all over or else we aren't even going to consider it." Helpful, that.

And were the Democrats wearing little halos generating gumdrops and cotton candy this whole time? Of course not. But they had the power and knew it. The Republicans were (largely) the ones who knew they could be beaten, but instead of working on things, they stalled and and said stuff like "start over." It's like when kids who know they aren't going to be "in" just take their toys and go play by themselves, waiting for the next class to come out for recess. Sadly, these "kids" are supposed to be working together to get something done.

Anyone who believes the Republicans ever wanted to BEGIN to be bi-partisan on the health care bill is, well, very different from me. The Republicans have been stalling, waiting for the next election day, ever since Obama got into office and made clear he was going to be ambitious. That was it. Didn't matter ambitious about what. Reps knew there would be failure (because there's always failure, and it doesn't matter the ratio of success to failure -- only VOLUME of failure), and have just been waiting. Scott Brown's effect on things is large, but not as a bellwether -- that just happens to correlate -- it was a GALVANIZER for the Republicans to stall even more, seeing their November stock grow.

How Democrats or Obama could be blamed for lack of bi-partisan results in that environment is entirely beyond me (but exactly what Republicans have been striving for).

QBsutekh137 March 23 2010 4:56 PM EDT

My last line should read "...could be blamed [any more than Republicans]..."

VsCountStrum [Black Watch] March 23 2010 5:08 PM EDT

I live in GA, consistently ranked 48th - 50th in education.

I do not know why it works in some area such as Virginia, where my wife grew up. My guess is partially the types of schools and what they are able to do within the schools. I had many friends that went to public schools and if there were problems in the schools, there was little that could be done. My next-door neighbor went to a school where a class mate robbed the school athletic department. Three days later he was back in class, except for what he had to miss for court dates. I have seen parents get very upset, if their kid can not have long hair or wear a particular t-shirt. However, they seem not to care if their kid does learn as long as he/she is moved along in grades.

In the private schools here, there is accountability. The Schools expect everyone to learn, graduate and go to college, if not they are kicked out. The Teachers expect the students to learn and reasonably respectful. if not then they tell the parents who will straighten it out. The Parents expect the teachers to teach which is why they are spending 15K-20K per year for that education. If something is happening they want to know how and why.


Around here, it is purely - you get what you pay for. So I pay school tax and I pay private tuition.

Taxes do a great many wonderful things, I agree. I do no mind paying taxes for the useful things such as you mentioned. I am largely a libertarian. I want the government out of my pocketbook and bed room. Make the government small and let free enterprise run.

We are not in a Democracy, we live in a Republic. Which is a good when quick action is necessary such as response to an emergency, but allows the power to rest is a few that can work for their own agendas.

Got to get back to work, but enjoying the discussion

QBsutekh137 March 23 2010 5:28 PM EDT

I agree about accountability, and that is, of course, the detail where the Devil resides (not the agreeing, the accountability... *smile*)

If and when I have a child I'll have to face what you already are facing... I'm prepared to go all the way to punting (home-school) if need be. But I live in Wisconsin in a pretty good school district (with the taxes to match!), so we'll see.

The disparity in schools you speak of is...annoying. That's where I wish one voice held more sway, but not sure how to accomplish that. Are there organizations in GA trying to remedy the situation, or is everyone just playing the private school game? I moved to Wisconsin from St. Louis City where the schools are so bad they got taken over by the state. And yet, it is hard to say if anything is changing there. Private schools and "magnet" schools are popular there, but no one seems to know exactly what to do about the public ones. From there, the bullet points you mention above (all four of them, dead on), have taken over.

Cube March 23 2010 5:41 PM EDT

While public schools aren't great in some areas. There are plenty of kids who would not have had a chance otherwise. Typically, the quality of a public school depends on the wealthiness of the area, and I think that's unfortunate. There are plenty of brilliant entrepreneurs who've come out of public schools though.

As I said in the other thread, I see providing a basic level of care as an investment. Not only will we save money if more people have access to preventative care; we would've paid for it through emergency rooms, but we also will be making people more productive. A healthier workforce can do more work.

VsCountStrum [Black Watch] March 23 2010 5:42 PM EDT

We considered Home-Schooling as option. We preferred a private school, but home schooling was much better than the public school option.

There have been several attempts to correct the problem, however, the teachers union is very strong. Most attempts to make the schools or teachers accountable have failed. The former Democratic Governor of GA Roy Barnes, irritated the union and it helped cost him reelection and elected the first Republican Governor since the Civil War.

Trying to convince the parents to play their role can not be legislated and, therefore, is much harder.

The only solution that I have seen, and I don't approve of, is the private school vouchers. I am worried that it will pull the private schools down to the public school level rather than raise the public schools.

QBsutekh137 March 23 2010 6:03 PM EDT

And to get vouchers passed sounds like it would be political suicide. It appears the power is where things suck the most (the teacher's union). That's a nasty little deadlock.

How is the teacher's union still holding such political sway if the private option is so prevalent and parent's are fed up with school quality? Surely you (and folks like you) do not listen to the teachers when it comes to voting? So, over time, their power (at least the political kind) should falter.

Or is that me being a naive back-bencher and not realizing there's special interest corruption going on in the GA state legislature?

VsCountStrum [Black Watch] March 23 2010 6:55 PM EDT

There is political corruption in just about every political body regardless of who is running it.

I do not know the numbers, but there are many more public schools and students in those public schools than in Private. The largest private schools that I know of are in Class AAA for sports while there are public schools up to AAAAA.

As you stated earlier, I believe apathy is to blame. Most parents that want and can send their kids to private schools do. Most parents that believe public schools are good or do not think about it at all, send their kids to public schools. There is not a large enough delegation in the middle or looking for a difference to cause any real change.

Admindudemus [jabberwocky] March 23 2010 8:57 PM EDT

health reform has been an issue for over twenty years now, republicans just ignored it as one of their issues. they failed to tackle it when the could have and then complain about how democrats finally did tackle it.

you can blame that on obama inflating the issue to emergency status or you can see that he was elected by americans for this and several other issues important to them.

that doesn't mean i think the bill is perfect, but unlike others i say that it is likely the lesser of evils to the system we had. as far as crystal ball predictions on how it will turn out, only time will tell for sure.

AdminTitan March 23 2010 9:30 PM EDT

Dude, you're giving American people too much credit. You think they elected Obama based on his platform?

TourneyPrizes March 23 2010 9:45 PM EDT

Dude, you're giving American people too much credit. You think they elected Obama based on his platform?

I had thought a corpse nominated by the Democrats would have beaten McCain. Given the extensive anti-Bush rhetoric of the country. With a large portion of it true. But there was no way a Republican was going to win in 2008. The fact Obama is a great orator sealed things.

Unfortunately it was the perfect storm for a very liberal and inexperienced person to get elected. And now we are all paying the price.

Now we just have to wait and see the outcome of the lawsuits filed today just after the bill was signed.

QBRanger March 23 2010 9:46 PM EDT

Dude, you're giving American people too much credit. You think they elected Obama based on his platform?

I had thought a corpse nominated by the Democrats would have beaten McCain. Given the extensive anti-Bush rhetoric of the country. With a large portion of it true. But there was no way a Republican was going to win in 2008. The fact Obama is a great orator sealed things.

Unfortunately it was the perfect storm for a very liberal and inexperienced person to get elected. And now we are all paying the price.

Now we just have to wait and see the outcome of the lawsuits filed today just after the bill was signed.

Admindudemus [jabberwocky] March 23 2010 10:37 PM EDT

i guess that means bush was only elected because of anti-clinton/gore sentiment. for that we received very expensive wars and a loss of personal liberties and rights never before seen in our country in addition to a major increase in anti-american sentiment that will likely fuel new terrorism movements for decades.

but wait, how again are you so sure that obama's election was more due to bush rather than obama's platform. are you saying that you know more about why individuals cast their votes than what they themselves understand, are you once again claiming some great insight because of your great understanding of human nature, or are you just admitting that you yourself vote in a certain manner?

Admindudemus [jabberwocky] March 23 2010 10:57 PM EDT

who is going against the will of the people now?

QBRanger March 23 2010 11:13 PM EDT

Yes,

There are many polls showing what support is or is not for the new law.

But I really believe, as most people who I chat with do, that Bush was the reason Obama won. His anti-Bush rhetoric was well constructed and well orated. Yes, Obama energized the liberal wing of the Democratic party. But I really do not know anyone who thought McCain had any chance with the financial crises and Bush both against him.

Admindudemus [jabberwocky] March 23 2010 11:17 PM EDT

so polls can be found to prove support for anything, yet in the same post you base your opinion solely on how you feel in addition to people you chat with?

hmm...

Lord Bob March 24 2010 12:38 AM EDT

Ok, just so Ranger doesn't think I'm a total hypocrite for not responding to his points: sorry man. Work has been busy and I haven't had time to reply to your post properly.
LB, that article is a perfect example of my point. .. The "insurer" who refused her interferon beta is none other than Medicare. The Government insurance.

Yes, and I acknowledge - and have posted as such before - that Medicare is in need of a fix. Not privatization, as the right may prefer, but certainly reform. I don't follow Medicare issues as closely, not being anywhere near the age bracket where it could affect me, but as I understand it this current reform does help a bit to make the system better by closing the doughnut hole. But I'll stop there because that's as far as I know, care, or have paid attention on the issue of Medicare for seniors.

On the issue of private insurance, I have seen these stories on a weekly, sometimes daily basis of people with serious illness getting dropped for pre-existing conditions. Many of these people died. Of the things I've seen people get dropped for, they include: HIV, childhood obesity, surviving cancer, miscarriage, and pregnancy. This to me is beyond immoral. It's a national embarrassment, and a national tragedy.

I've wanted to post these here on several occasions, but I tend to see them in the "down times" between political flame wa.. uh, I mean threads. And with few exceptions, I try to respond to political threads made by others to defend my side rather than start new threads on these issues. And I certainly avoid posting new political threads during the calm of these "down times."

Of these articles, I remember one about the CEO of an insurance conglomerate in one of the southern states. I want to say Louisiana, but I can't confirm that. I no longer have the article. Out of every seven hundred dollars spent on health insurance in that state, one dollar goes to paying his salary. That's bloody criminal. It makes me sick to say I live in the same country where that is happening. If I had needed any reason to support reform - or even a full blown socialized insurance program - this would have been it. Of course, I already have personal and non-personal reasons to support reform over the terrible system we had.
It was more than just Fox stating this. Most of the news organizations except the liberal ones were fairly consistent on this.

I saw the non-conservative sites backing more what I said. Common sense would also dictate that one of the smallest states of the nation is not an indicator of national opinion, especially considering the circumstances, and the polls in the months leading up to the Massachusetts election.
I do want to read what your take on the Scott Brown upset win is.

I already told you.
http://www.carnageblender.com/bboard/q-and-a-fetch-msg.tcl?msg_id=002zF0&all_p=1

Lord Bob March 24 2010 12:57 AM EDT

But I really believe, as most people who I chat with do, that Bush was the reason Obama won.

Your average voter on both sides knows jack about policy. Republicans voted for McCain because he was not black, not "a Muslim Kenyan," and didn't have a funny name. Democrats voted for Obama because Democrats are perceived to be better on economic issues (and I believe they are), and the economy crashed on a Republican's watch.

He did not win "because he's black!" or strictly on anti-Bush sentiment. There were many, many other factors that went in to both candidates poll numbers.

QBsutekh137 March 24 2010 9:56 AM EDT

But I really believe, as most people who I chat with...


Has it possibly occurred to you, Ranger, that the people you chat with are bound to be like-minded (with you) in the first place? At least to a small degree of statistical bias?

I can't imagine you "chat" mostly with people who differ from you or are a lot more liberal than you. If you did, and assuming you use the same demeanor in your "chatting" as you do here with your posting, you would run out of chat partners relatively quickly. Sorry, I am chortling to myself a bit, imagining you making one of your, "This is obvious fact that can be seen by any intelligent person..." remarks to someone's actual face, and seeing how long that person hung around for more discourse.

The people you (or I) chat with have nothing to do with overall sentiment. I'm not saying polls are an end-all be-all in that arena, either, but then we either agree to never quote ANY sort of poll or statistic again, or we allow it and take it (at least) as an indicator. How high would a poll number have to be before you would buy it? Where would the poll have to come from? From another angle, if the Tea Party themselves had run a poll, and 70% of folks had said they think the bill passing is a "good" thing, would that even matter to you? Or would you simply "chat" more with the people around you, safe in the knowledge that you simply _have_ to be correct on this?

Lord Bob March 24 2010 3:38 PM EDT

Back to the issue of Republican obstructionism:
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/03/24/gop-senators-refusing-to_n_511639.html

Gee, I wish I had a job where I could just leave early every time something happened that I don't like, and still get paid for it. And with taxpayer money, no less!

In any other job these people would be out the door. Let's fire them in November, I say!

AdminNightStrike March 24 2010 3:45 PM EDT

Democrats voted for Obama because Democrats are perceived to be better on economic issues


Eh???? Democrats are perceived to be better on human rights, the environment, and helping the low end of the totem pole.... not money. Republicans have the image of being better at cash, war, and jobs.

You're the first person to ever tell me that a Democrat is good on money issues. Yes, the deficit ballooned up while Bush was president, but that's more to do with worldly events at the time. For comparison, look at Vietnam/JFK and fixing the deficit/Nixon.

Lord Bob March 24 2010 3:49 PM EDT

Eh???? Democrats are perceived to be better on human rights, the environment, and helping the low end of the totem pole.... not money. Republicans have the image of being better at cash, war, and jobs.

I'd love to see your stats on this one.

You're the first person to ever tell me that a Democrat is good on money issues. Yes, the deficit ballooned up while Bush was president,

And was dramatically reduced under Clinton.

AdminNightStrike March 24 2010 3:52 PM EDT

It wasn't reduced because of him, just like it wasn't increased due to Bush. Congress controls spending, not the president.

AdminQBVerifex [Serenity In Chaos] March 24 2010 4:13 PM EDT

The Senate and House need more people who can work together, and less people who just vote with whatever their party says on everything. I was listening to a story about a GOP Senator who was trying to work with Democrats to get some agenda passed, and they basically said that he pays the price back home when he chooses to work with the opposition.

And I just thought that was stupid. Senators and Representatives are elected so that they can work to further push their representation of their state ahead.

If I was hired to build a house, and I had to work with people who were incredibly different from me, I would FIND A WAY to make it happen. I would see what similarities I had with them and try to work with them to get things done. Giving something a try and then throwing your hands up in the air when it doesn't work the first time, or even the 10th time is not representing people in my opinion, and is dishonest.

QBBast [Hidden Agenda] March 24 2010 4:17 PM EDT


Will the people who want to win the contract on building the 2nd house accuse you of all manner of shabbiness for the way you went about building the 1st one?

AdminQBVerifex [Serenity In Chaos] March 24 2010 4:21 PM EDT

Yes they will, and you know what, screw those guys, they don't know how to build a house at all!

QBsutekh137 March 24 2010 4:25 PM EDT

That's why we need to start with vote reform. You aren't going to change human nature, Veri, at least not in politics. A two-party system is the easiest to polarize, and that is exactly what ends up happening.

Way back in Government class, conventional knowledge was that democrats were traditionally more liberal, and republicans more conservative, whatever that means. No one ever told me either was "better" at something. Each has different ways of doing something, but how can one be judged to be "better"? Sure, the parties tend to champion different things, but that has nothing to do with quality of job done. Economically, Democrats are known for tax-and-spending and Republicans are known for things like "trickle-down theory", AKA "reagonomics" or "voo-doo economics" (I always thought that last term was stupid, since there's nothing voo-doo about it, and it can work.

Which side is "better"? Well, one could consider FDR's policies to be pretty much "spend", with or without the taxes. And it is credited with helping out during the Great Depression. Reagonomics is credited with turning things around circa 1980. Me? I don't think policy had a lot to do with either turnaround. The Great Depression was laid to rest by the start of a World War -- what better way to stimulate an economy! Build stuff that keeps getting destroyed, then make more! And Reagan? Trickle-down didn't save the 80s, things just turned around anyway, thanks in part to the beginning of a more technologically advanced manufacturing sector and continuing use of off-shore labor. Just good-old, grind-it-out Capitalism at work. (not to mention the 80s represented a fairly nasty farm crisis, so a lot of rural folks didn't see a turnaround at all until a fair time later).

This thread is closed to new posts. However, you are welcome to reference it from a new thread; link this with the html <a href="/bboard/q-and-a-fetch-msg.tcl?msg_id=0031R4">And now the 2nd act of the healthcare bill:</a>