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Morning Fix: Arlen Specter and What Lebanon Meant



Sen. Arlen Specter faced a confrontational crowd during a town hall earlier this week in Lebanon, Pennsylvania. Photo by Chris Gardner -- Getty Images

The back and forth between Democratic Sen. Arlen Specter and several attendees of a town hall in Lebanon, Pa. earlier this week may well become the lasting political symbol of the summer of 2009: a politician and a constituent standing inches away from one another as they angrily debate the merits (or lack thereof) of President Obama's health care reform plan.

The exchange between Specter and one man -- captured on film and broadcast relentlessly throughout the day on cable television -- culminated with the incumbent senator asking whether the man would like to leave the meeting and the man responding: "One day God's going to stand before you, and he's going to judge you and the rest of your damned cronies up on the Hill" to applause from some in the crowd.

Close observers of Pennsylvania politics agreed that the showdown in Lebanon marked a turning point in what to date has been a rocky period for Specter who switched from the Republican to the Democratic party earlier this spring in advance of his bid for a sixth term in 2010.

Whether the town hall was a positive development for Specter or a sign of the electoral trouble he faces both in a primary against Rep. Joe Sestak (D) and in a potential general election fight against former Rep. Pat Toomey (R) remained a matter of significant debate, however.

Saul Shorr, a Philadelphia-based Democratic media consultant, said the town hall confrontation was great news for Specter -- affording him the opportunity to defend the president's plan in a high-profile public setting. "The town halls are the best thing that has happened to him," said Saul Shorr. "It makes him a Democrat."

Specter's campaign manager Chris Nicholas echoed that sentiment, noting that in the wake of the Lebanon event the senator had received "loads of positive feedback from Democratic leaders for the way [he] has conducted himself." Nicholas added that Specter was greeted with a standing ovation in a meeting with Perry County Democratic officials on Wednesday, many of whom referenced his performance in Lebanon as a rallying point.

One senior Republican consultant who has worked extensively in the state disagreed. Referring to the intensity of emotion against Specter as "jaw-dropping", the source, who was granted anonymity to speak candidly, predicted that the confluence of anger regarding the health care bill, upset about Specter's party switch and the Senator's "smarter-than-you" attitude will lead to "either a Sestak primary win or a Toomey general election victory."

Specter, for his part, refused to back down from the aggressive stance he adopted during the town hall, telling CBS' "The Early Show" on Wednesday that the voices of loud dissent at these town halls were not "representative" of the attitude of the country as a whole.

For Specter, the intense national spotlight over health care is nothing new. His party switch in April stunned the political world and his acknowledgment that the decision was motivated in large part by the belief that he could not beat Toomey in a Republican primary was equally astonishing for its realpolitik frankness.

While Specter has been bolstered by endorsements from Obama as well as leading Pennsylvania officials including Gov. Ed Rendell and Sen. Bob Casey Jr., there remains considerable skepticism toward him among the rank and file Democrats -- particularly union members who are still smarting over Specter's opposition to the Employee Free Choice Act earlier this year when he was still a Republican.

Polling conducted in the race shows that while Specter has a healthy lead over Sestak at the moment, the incumbent's support is somewhat shaky. A mid-July Quinnipiac University poll showed Specter leading Sestak 55 percent to 23 percent but more voters (49 percent) said the incumbent did not deserve another term than said he should be re-elected (40 percent).

Sestak is seeking to capitalize on the distrust toward Specter among Democratic loyalists, making the case that the incumbent's party switch was about politics not principle. The central question in the primary is "what kind of leadership do you want for the future," Sestak said in a recent interview.

One Democratic consultant not affiliated with either candidate said that Sestak's silence regarding Specter's raucous town hall could undermine that argument, however.

"I think Sestak could've shown he is putting party ahead of politics by somehow coming to Specter's defense," said the source who has worked extensively in the state. "It seemed like a good opportunity to reinforce the Sestak message that he's for party and principle ahead of personal gain."

Thursday's Fix Picks: Better REM Album -- "Murmur", "Life's Rich Pageant" or "Fables of the Reconstruction"? Discuss.

1. Dick Cheney vs George W. Bush.
2. Ruth Marcus on the disruption of Obama's post-partisan image.
3. Crist says he has "seven or so" in the mix for Senate appointment.
4. Is Lexi Giannoulias the chosen one in Illinois?
5. The Beatles come to "Rock Band".

Palin's Numbers Tumble: A new CNN/Opinion Research poll shows that just 39 percent of Americans view former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin (R) favorably while 48 percent see her in an unfavorable light. Palin's numbers in the new survey, which was in the field earlier this month, compare unfavorably to a CNN poll in mid May that showed Palin's favorables (46 percent) slightly outrunning her unfavorables (43 percent). Most critical to Palin's future prospects is the fact that the decline in the former governor's numbers are the result of a softening among self-described Republicans. Palin's favorable score has dipped from the 80s in May to the mid 60s now, according to CNN polling director Keating Holland. Since she arrived on the national political scene, Palin has always been a divisive figure -- beloved by Republicans, reviled by Democrats. But, Palin's somewhat inexplicable resignation last month may well have lead to a questioning of her readiness for office even among those who had previously been her most ardent supporters.

Newt Addresses AEI: Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich (R-Ga.), who is openly considering a run for president in 2012, will participate in a "four-part course on the principles necessary to fundamentally change how to think about and implement government policies and budgets," today at the American Enterprise Institute. The course promises an "extensive reading list" (woo hoo!) and a detailed discussion of the ways in which the current economic troubles gripping the country should be addressed. Gingrich, who will be joined today by former Indianapolis Mayor Stephen Goldsmith, is positioning himself as the ideas guy/policy wonk of the 2012 Republican field.

Miller For Conway: State Attorney General Jack Conway (D) won the backing of former state treasurer Jonathan Miller on Wednesday, further evidence that much -- though not all -- of the Democratic party establishment is lining up behind Conway in advance is next year's senatorial primary against Lt. Gov. Dan Mongiardo. Miller, who is currently the Secretary of Finance in Gov. Steve Beshear's (D) administration, called Conway the "most qualified person to represent Kentucky in Washington." Miller joins Rep. Ben Chandler, state Auditor Crit Luallen and Louisville Mayor Jerry Abramson among others who have endorsed Conway. Beshear has endorsed Mongiardo. Conway is regarded as the frontrunner for the Democratic nomination given his impressive second quarter fundraising total -- $1.3 million raised. Secretary of State Trey Grayson is seen as the likely Republican nominee although he faces a primary fight in the form of Rand Paul, the son of Texas Rep. Ron Paul (R).

Mayors Play Fantasy (Football): Merging the Fix's two great loves -- politics and sports -- Yahoo has set up a fantasy football league featuring teams run by 11 mayor from around the country. The participants -- Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown , Green Bay Mayor Jim Schmitt, Kansas City Mayor Mark Funkhouser, Minneapolis Mayor R.T. Rybak, Oakland Mayor Ron Dellums, Oklahoma City Mayor Mick Cornett, Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer, Pittsburgh Mayor Luke Ravenstahl, Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson, San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom and Tampa Bay Mayor Pam Iorio -- will compete in head-to-head matchups each week of the football season. The winner gets a $15,000 donation to the non-profit of his or her choice. As of press time, only four mayor had set up their teams. Our favorite team name? "Tampa Con Leches."

Robo-Poll Shows Romney Is N.H. Favorite: A auto-dial survey conducted by Populus Research for the GOP blog nowhampshire.com shows former Gov. Mitt Romney (Mass.) is the strong frontrunner in the 2012 primary in the Granite State. Romney, who placed second to Sen. John McCain in New Hampshire in 2008, led the field with 50 percent followed by former Govs. Sarah Palin (Alaska) and Mike Huckabee (Ark.) at 17 percent each. Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich (Ga.) took 13 percent and Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty received three percent. Polls conducted nearly three years before voters vote should be taken cum grano salis but the results do suggest that Romney would be a clear favorite in the Granite State if he decided to run (ahem) in 2010. (Important note: This poll was conducted using an automated recording rather than using live interviewers. For more on the differences between the two methodologies and the problems with each, read more from Post pollster Jon Cohen.)

Say What?: "This is truly not about Mark Sanford anymore." -- Embattled South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford (R) on, well, himself.

By Chris Cillizza  |  August 13, 2009; 5:25 AM ET
Categories:  Morning Fix  
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Next: Morning Fix: Polling the Town Halls

Comments

I was out for the weekend and did not see these late comments until just now. I answered the questions posed by "margaretmeyers" over here:

http://voices.washingtonpost.com/thefix/morning-fix/081409-morning-fix.html

Posted by: JakeD | August 17, 2009 2:45 PM | Report abuse

@chrisfox - Thanks for the reference.

==

The book is excellent. Best nonmathematical thing I've read since Deutsch's "Fabric of Reality" and Popper's "Schism." The role of entanglement seems to have been a real breakthrough in thinking about QM and the Observer Problem.

Re: Jake .. a few days ago we were having a really smashing discussion on here, everyone was being quite civil and there was no name-calling. And it was by no means a tampon-commercial agreefest. Then Jake showed up and within a half hour it fell apart. You saw. His presence here is truly verminous. And he depends on you and mark_in_austin, calling out to you both when he's getting hammered by people disgusted with his lying and mockery. In the complete absense of support I think he might get tired and leave.

I'd sure like more of those kind of discussions, but they seem impossible with JakeD's nasty stupid trolling.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 15, 2009 9:21 PM | Report abuse

@chrisfox - Thanks for the reference. If Jake posts something I find not worth a response, I don't respond. If I decide to disagree, a short, civil response suffices. You get involved in a long back and forth, provoking many more responses from Jake than a simple response or ignoring

I started posting on the Fix during the election last year and had many back and forths over posting Pres. Obama's middle name in all caps. I eventually came to the conclusion that it wasn't worth the trouble. I'll snark on occasion, but a longer exchange simply isn't worth it.

Oh well, off to listen to Obama's town hall meeting in Grand Junction.

BB

Posted by: FairlingtonBlade | August 15, 2009 6:00 PM | Report abuse

@margaret: it's an 18-digit tattoo on the forehead in ultraviolet ink.

Three groups of six digits, of course.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 14, 2009 9:18 PM | Report abuse

Jake hasn't yet told us how the ER is going to determine who is an illegal alien.

Do all citizens get a secret tattoo at birth? An implant after they take the oath of citizanship? And then if the patient doesn't have the tattoo/implant they are ejeected to the curb to bleed out? Can we elect Jake to do the ejecting?

Posted by: margaretmeyers | August 14, 2009 6:03 PM | Report abuse

I also don't use easily skewed statistics like "infant mortality" for partisan uses.

==

Ah, so despite all that noise about the immorality of abortion and all those hysterical comparisons to the Holocaust, you don't *really* give a crap what happens to children .. you just like to use abortion as a backhanded slap at women.

Thought so.

Troll.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 14, 2009 5:07 PM | Report abuse

I've got all the time needed to probe the basis for (and lack thereof) Obamacare. I was not the one who brought up "alleviate suffering" as a justification. It's simply that I believe governments are not the best tool for that job.

==

In an astonishing turn of events, nobody here cares what a liar and an idiot "believes"

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 14, 2009 5:05 PM | Report abuse

While the United States reports every case of infant mortality, it has been suggested that some other developed countries do not. A 2006 article in U.S. News & World Report claims that "First, it's shaky ground to compare U.S. infant mortality with reports from other countries. The United States counts all births as live if they show any sign of life, regardless of prematurity or size. This includes what many other countries report as stillbirths. In Austria and Germany, fetal weight must be at least 500 grams (1 pound) to count as a live birth; in other parts of Europe, such as Switzerland, the fetus must be at least 30 centimeters (12 inches) long. In Belgium and France, births at less than 26 weeks of pregnancy are registered as lifeless. And some countries don't reliably register babies who die within the first 24 hours of birth.

Thus, the United States is sure to report higher infant mortality rates. For this very reason, the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, which collects the European numbers, warns of head-to-head comparisons by country."

Historically, until the 1990s Russia and other countries of the former Soviet Union did not count as a live birth or as an infant death extremely premature infants (less than 1,000 g, less than 28 weeks gestational age, or less than 35 cm in length) that were born alive (breathed, had a heartbeat, or exhibited voluntary muscle movement) but failed to survive for at least 7 days. Although such extremely premature infants typically accounted for only about 0.005 of all live-born children, their exclusion from both the numerator and the denominator in the reported IMR led to an estimated 22%-25% lower reported IMR. In some cases, too, perhaps because hospitals or regional health departments were held accountable for lowering the IMR in their catchment area, infant deaths that occurred in the 12th month were "transferred" statistically to the 13th month (i.e., the second year of life), and thus no longer classified as an infant death.

Posted by: JakeD | August 14, 2009 3:09 PM | Report abuse

(cont.)

Another challenge to comparability is the practice of counting frail or premature infants who die before the normal due date as miscarriages (spontaneous abortions) or those who die during or immediately after childbirth as stillborn. Therefore, the quality of a country's documentation of perinatal mortality can matter greatly to the accuracy of its infant mortality statistics. This point is reinforced by the demographer Ansley Coale, who finds dubiously high ratios of reported stillbirths to infant deaths in Hong Kong and Japan in the first 24 hours after birth, a pattern that is consistent with the high recorded sex ratios at birth in those countries and suggests not only that many female infants who die in the first 24 hours are misreported as stillbirths rather than infant deaths but also that those countries do not follow WHO recommendations for the reporting of live births and infant deaths.

Another seemingly paradoxical finding is that when countries with poor medical services introduce new medical centers and services, instead of declining the reported IMRs often increase for a time. The main cause of this is that improvement in access to medical care is often accompanied by improvement in the registration of births and deaths. Deaths that might have occurred in a remote or rural area and not been reported to the government might now be reported by the new medical personnel or facilities. Thus, even if the new health services reduce the actual IMR, the reported IMR may increase.

Posted by: JakeD | August 14, 2009 3:07 PM | Report abuse

I also don't use easily skewed statistics like "infant mortality" for partisan uses.

Posted by: JakeD | August 14, 2009 3:04 PM | Report abuse

I've got all the time needed to probe the basis for (and lack thereof) Obamacare. I was not the one who brought up "alleviate suffering" as a justification. It's simply that I believe governments are not the best tool for that job.

Posted by: JakeD | August 14, 2009 2:27 PM | Report abuse

Jake, the rest of the world has to take care of itself. I'm busy with my home, my job, my family and my hopes for my country. That takes all my time. How much time have you got?

And why get into this kind of argument? It's what irritates a lot of us.

Posted by: margaretmeyers | August 14, 2009 2:12 PM | Report abuse

No, margaretmeyers, but where do you draw the line? For the sake of argument, how much will Obamacare cost for SIX BILLION people?

Posted by: JakeD | August 14, 2009 1:32 PM | Report abuse

jake, the bill says that yeah, we treat people who arrive at hospitals in need of emergency care FIRST. Then we look at the contents of their wallets, their insurance card and their status as a citizen. We do it in this order because we are human beings.
Let's say my 13 year old busts his head open and I take him to the ER. Do you think I want them asking me for his birth certificate before they'll treat him?

Oh wait ... I get it... illegal aliens are easily recognised by anyone: they have dark skin and have lost a finger to a circular saw, or they are dark skinned and have fallen down the basement stairs carrying a laundry basket, or they are dark skinned and have broken their ankle trimming trees. I get it.

Posted by: margaretmeyers | August 14, 2009 1:26 PM | Report abuse

For the record, SIX BILLION people on this planet undergo alleviable suffering -- government is not the answer, but the problem -- for the sake of argument, though, how much will Obamacare cost for all of them too?

Posted by: JakeD | August 14, 2009 1:10 PM | Report abuse

Thank you, margaretmeyers. I have now re-read that Section, but "affordability credits" is just one portion of the entire bill. Why do we have to treat (rather than arrest and deport) illegal aliens in the ER or reimburse hospitals for treatment of illegal aliens?

==

Because we aren't savages. We are a moral people and we're not indifferent to the alleviable suffering.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 14, 2009 12:50 PM | Report abuse

Thank you, margaretmeyers. I have now re-read that Section, but "affordability credits" is just one portion of the entire bill. Why do we have to treat (rather than arrest and deport) illegal aliens in the ER or reimburse hospitals for treatment of illegal aliens?

Posted by: JakeD | August 14, 2009 12:38 PM | Report abuse

drindl, I just try to be reasonable with everyone here, even if I disagree with them. So yeah, I want to answer Jake when I can. Chris Fox and I are very close in our opinions (as are we) but I don't like to see anyone here shouted down, dismissed or insulted. Zouk is very offensive almost all the time, and he deserves whatever he gets. Jake makes his mistakes (anyone who posts as often as he does will) and he says the wrong thing sometimes (anyone who posts as often...). I see him as a different case.

Posted by: margaretmeyers | August 14, 2009 12:10 PM | Report abuse

margaret, you have far more important things to do. There is no 'fear' -- it's all propaganda.

Posted by: drindl | August 14, 2009 10:43 AM | Report abuse

jake, at 1003 you asked for where in the HR bill it says illegal aliens will NOT be covered.

Myth: PG 50 Section 152 in HC bill - HC will be provided 2 ALL non US citizens, illegal or otherwise.

Fact: The bill explicitly states that no Federal payments will be used for for illegal immigrants. (P. 143, sec. 246).

I hope this works to allay your fears.

Posted by: margaretmeyers | August 14, 2009 9:55 AM | Report abuse

Jake, I went back on line this morning looking for the material I read refuting the Free Republic bullet points on HR3200.
Found it!

They were cut and pasted into the comments section of this article, an interview with Sen Specter done by the Pennsylvania Patriot-News. The poster says they come from Congressman "Holdden's office" -- I assume she means Congressman Tim Holden. Of course they make tons more sense than the anti-health care reform bullets that have been flying around the internet.

http://www.pennlive.com/midstate/index.ssf/2009/08/qa_with_sen_arlen_specter_on_h.html

I can't believe you guys stay up so late arguing with one another. Seriously, we better have lots of coverage for high blood pressure and ulcers. Much better for all of us to spend some time with people we love.

Posted by: margaretmeyers | August 14, 2009 9:41 AM | Report abuse

mibrooks27:

I will double-check that Section tomorrow (I haven't read the Senate bills yet).

Posted by: JakeD | August 14, 2009 2:43 AM | Report abuse

I confess I'm too old to know REM, rock is a nostalgia thing for me now. Just wanted to point out for people who weren't around then what a smashing excellent year was 1971 for rock. A whole bunch of the best rock albums of all time and a lot of important firsts came out within a year or two. Who's Next, Twelve Dreams of Dr. Sardonicus, Deja Vu, Dark Side of the Moon, Nilsson Schmilsson (OK, sue me), Space Oddity.

Me, I've been listening to Noise for years now. Little else. This guy is a genius:

http://www.discogs.com/artist/Dissecting+Table

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 14, 2009 2:02 AM | Report abuse

Accelerate: yeah, I'm a Buck fan so that one was bound to go over well with me. It's been tough I'm sure since Berry left. I have faith in them. I don't think they've yet reached that horrible death spiral that the Stones hit with Undercover.

Posted by: nodebris | August 14, 2009 2:02 AM | Report abuse

"Have you ever listened to the albums that Chris mentioned above?"

All of them. Yes. Duh. And I also read the comments knocking Monster.

Discography, abbreviated:

Murmur (1983)
Fables of the Reconstruction (1985)
Lifes Rich Pageant (1986)

LOTS OF EMO STUFF, INCLUDING A LOT I LIKE

Monster (1994)

Hey, hey, my my.

Posted by: nodebris | August 14, 2009 1:50 AM | Report abuse

""Monster is an excellent REM album. A much-needed antidote to a binge of sensitive emoting. I mean, they are a ROCK band, right?

Posted by: nodebris""

Check out their new album, Accelerate, as well. A good rocker and better than Monster.

Posted by: DDAWD | August 14, 2009 1:45 AM | Report abuse

"Remember when she was going to get the HRC vote for McCain? Remember that two weeks when McCain got a boost? "Hot Chicks Vote Republican?""

On the night of the election, whenever I got home from the party I was at, they were showing a rerun of Bill O'Reilly on FOX News. The episode was originally aired around when Palin was nominated for VP. It was great. They were talking about what a game changer she was and how she had the Democrats quaking in their boots and how it was proof that Republicans were more progressive. I think they had Dennis Miller and Dick Morris as guests.

Can you believe it's already been a year since we first got introduced to that person? Time flies.

Posted by: DDAWD | August 14, 2009 1:39 AM | Report abuse

"Monster is an excellent REM album. A much-needed antidote to a binge of sensitive emoting. I mean, they are a ROCK band, right?

Posted by: nodebris"

Have you ever listened to the albums that Chris mentioned above?

Posted by: DDAWD | August 14, 2009 1:35 AM | Report abuse

And don't forget the eighteen-digit forehead tattoo in ultraviolet ink. Required to buy food. Or ammunition.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 14, 2009 1:33 AM | Report abuse

I think SP does herself a disservice when she pretends to be an intellectual. She has some strengths. That ain't one, y'betcha. Even her fans know that, for chistsakes. Her fans are anti-intellectuals, right? They sincerely value her stupidity -- or, as they would phrase it, her "just like me-ness."

Limbaugh etc. just look venal and clumsy trying to sell her as an intellectual, when they know she isn't and no one values her as an intellectual and they ain't likely to start, neither.

Blech. Nasty stuff. Murdoch. Limbaugh. Rove. Palin. Atwater. Nasty, dirty stuff.

Monster is an excellent REM album. A much-needed antidote to a binge of sensitive emoting. I mean, they are a ROCK band, right?

Posted by: nodebris | August 14, 2009 1:32 AM | Report abuse

The Dems need to start parking a big Black Helicopter and setting up ACORN and FEMA "info" booths outside of their healthcare townhall meetings from now on.

The Wingnut Teabagger goons would crap their pants in fear.

Better yet, we should go to Townhalls with vans marked "Wingnut Healthcare Meeting Disrupter Relocation Team" and a pack of folks in black jump suits with clip-boards and headsets, and start taking pictures and writing down license plates.

"What are you doing???"

"Please step back, we're making the list"

"What List????"

"The List. Please step back."

Posted by: DrainYou | August 14, 2009 1:21 AM | Report abuse

Well between her resignation and her support for what most people know to be lies, a lot fewer people like her now. And most of her loss is from, as CC pointed out, other Republicans.

Remember when she was going to get the HRC vote for McCain? Remember that two weeks when McCain got a boost? "Hot Chicks Vote Republican?"

"As he sinks in the polls, he'll try to destroy her!"

Now Palin is anxiously reading blogs and getting her knickers in a snit over what people are saying about her.

Ross Douthat did a column a few weeks ago that almost had me feeling sorry for her .. till I remembered her "actual responsibilities" line and her position on endangered species.

I hope she ends up in prison.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 14, 2009 1:10 AM | Report abuse

"That devil harpy Sarah Palin, for one"

Yes, but Rush Limbaugh says that she has "intellectual heft." Apparently, a rude fat dope addict drop-out who can't stay married and who won't agree to a moderated debate is the arbiter of intelligence in 21st Century America. Which explains a lot, don't you think? You buy that, the next thing you know Glen Beck starts looking good and O'Reilley's a frigging genius. And Sarah?

Y'betcha.

Posted by: nodebris | August 14, 2009 1:03 AM | Report abuse

@BB: If you love a good mind-stimulating read, you'll thank me for this:

http://www.amazon.com/Mindful-Universe-Mechanics-Participating-Collection/dp/3540724133/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1250225822&sr=8-1

Just arrived today, hardback, a slim volume without a single equation. I'm putting everything else I'm reading on hold to read this one.

Seems to be a resurgence of interest in QM and the observer role, many excellent books on entanglement and decoherence, as the old debates about Wigner's friend and superposed live-dead cats fade into the absurdity that they always were.

Enjoy.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 14, 2009 1:00 AM | Report abuse

jaked specializes in destroying civil discourse. it's his purpose. there is no sincerity there. just tactics. the hollow twisted remnant of a mediocre lawyer, clawing pathetically at relevance.

Posted by: nodebris | August 14, 2009 12:56 AM | Report abuse

What kind of sick bastards believe this?

==

That devil harpy Sarah Palin, for one

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 14, 2009 12:55 AM | Report abuse

"Well, a lot of you know that I construct risk models as a hobby with U.S. macro-economics."

I just like to sniff the glue.

Posted by: DDAWD | August 14, 2009 12:50 AM | Report abuse

mibrooks27 wrote: "like animals just prior to a devastating storm or other natural calamity"

Ah, but no, it's animals just *after* a calamity.

Looking around, trying to decide whether it's time to eat the young.

I mean, the adults with socialized medicine that they love, paid for by their healthy children, now complaining that their children might also get the socialized medicine that their parents currently enjoy at the expense of their children? The parents willing to deny this benefit to their children because -- what, we're going to euthanize them?!! Christ. It's disgusting.

What they are saying is that if you give representative democracy a chance, the people of the U.S. are going to agree that we should kill old people and babies.

Good Lord in Heaven! And yet these same people claim to be patriots who live in the best country on earth! We're great, democracy is great, but if you let Americans vote we'll kill our parents and children? What kind of sick bastards believe this?

Make up your mind! Are we devils incarnate, or the best most ethical people on earth?

Gah, conservatives are psychotic!

Posted by: nodebris | August 14, 2009 12:50 AM | Report abuse

JakeD

GET A FREAKIN' LIFE!!!!!!!!

Geeze, you are so damn pathetic and unself-aware.

Posted by: DrainYou | August 14, 2009 12:49 AM | Report abuse

Section 246 on page 143 -'undocumented aliens' will not be eligible for credits to help them buy health insurance

“...Nothing in this subtitle shall allow Federal payments for affordability credits on behalf of individuals who are not lawfully present in the United States...”

The Senate version contains even stronger language making it illegal for any federal, state or local recipient of healthcare funds to use federal *or state* funds for illegal resident health care except in cases of life threatening emergency. The punishment is the loss of federal healthcare funds OR the loss of local control of those funds. That essentially means that some city, say San Francisco, that might provide a free clinic for illegal immigrants, risks loosing control (or, just loosing) of all state and federal healthcare funds. Pretty draconian and completely the opposite of what Jake and his friends are claiming.

Posted by: mibrooks27 | August 14, 2009 12:41 AM | Report abuse

Hey, Chris C. I know you're on vacation but I'm sure you read the comments.

Take a look at today's, before and after JakeD showed up. Ask yourself which sort of postings are more like what you want to see more of here.

I'm sure you've gotten enough emails about JakeD to know how many people want him gone and I'm sure you dismiss the majority of those as political opposition, all balanced and yadda yadda, but you can sweep all that aside and look at the actual results.

When Jake isn't here, conversation is overwhelmingly civil, even between people who disagree.

Once Jake shows up, it all falls apart. He trolls and trolls and trolls, and he posts things about hopes for Obama's assassination that are completely beyond the pale of any debate.

The majority of we who post here want him banned. Please read the posts, read as far back as you like. And get rid of this creep.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 14, 2009 12:40 AM | Report abuse

Still think Palin is going to get "60 million votes?"

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2009/08/12/palins-popularity-plummet_n_257636.html

Where are they gonna come from, Shangri-La?

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 14, 2009 12:35 AM | Report abuse

jakedass wrote: 'Technically Glenn Beck is not "on the air" (broadcast). He's on cable.'

And, technically, you aren't a microcephalic. Your point?

Posted by: nodebris | August 14, 2009 12:34 AM | Report abuse

Oh shut up scrivener, you're just a loser with a keyboard. You're not worth anyone's time to thwart, and nobody in the intelligence community would give you the bloody time of day off your own watch.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 14, 2009 12:25 AM | Report abuse

Technically Glenn Beck is not "on the air" (broadcast). He's on cable.

Posted by: JakeD | August 14, 2009 12:24 AM | Report abuse

@mibrooks: I truly hope you're wrong about this prediction. But I agree with you on free trade and I would go further, I would eliminate the entire financial caste. The Bolsheviks did and their economy surged, in fact the Soviet Union went from a 16th century feudal monarchy to a major world power in a single generation in the absense of that parasite class. That's what you call "a success," a triumph in fact. Keep the accountants but all the financier types should go on chain gangs.

We've started construction of our house in VN, could move most anytime. If you're right it'll be "sooner"

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 14, 2009 12:23 AM | Report abuse

BLOG-SPAM ALERT! ATTENTION WA-PO WEB EDITORS AND WRITERS...

Chris Cillizza:

Save this thread. The contrived JakeD attack, the name-calling, the queer eye allusions, all the frat-boy juvenalia... they've run out of creative ways to blog-spam and now we're just getting cut-rate kabuki theater from this cyber-rentamob.

Will someone please forward the spawn of this lame 24/7 psy op to Rozlyn Mazer, Inspector General, Office of National Intelligence?

If this is on the public's dime, there better well be more "R.O.I" than just burying postings that don't comport to the prevailing ideology of "the community."

http://nowpublic.com/world/govt-fusion-center-spying-pretext-harass-and-censor

Posted by: scrivener50 | August 14, 2009 12:19 AM | Report abuse

Well, a lot of you know that I construct risk models as a hobby with U.S. macro-economics. I predicted the current downturn we are in (but missed the uptick over the past three months), well over two years ago, and I just completed the most recent one. That model shows a staggering and very deep downturn beginning no later than the middle of September. I actually think this has already started, though. The stock markets *will* plunge below the Feb-March lows before the end of the year. S&P will fall below 500 and we will experience unemployment numbers that will challenge the worst of those occurring during the Great Depression. Now, I am no social scientist, but I wouldn't be a bit surprised to see riots, national strikes, and social unrest , coupled with over-reaction by government that will destabilize our government and rip our social fabric apart. The same people who created this economic catastrophe, the same though patterns and unfettered greed, run amuck "free trade", have caused this. The ONLY way out is to admit that globalization and free trade are a failure and to undertake some very strong protectionist regulations. This might well spark a trade war, but we can survive that. What we cannot survive the the anarchy, public fury, and meltdown of trust in our institutions and government if we do not.

What bought on this post (and the new model) is that I am sensing an unease in the country that has very little to do with "the health care debate", but is, rather, a general unease and anger, rater like animals just prior to a devastating storm or other natural calamity. In a sick sort of way, I am merely posting this as a warning of what is to come. If I am right, and I am pretty confident I am, this whole healthcare debate will be swept aside and rendered ancient history by the economy overtaking it.

Posted by: mibrooks27 | August 14, 2009 12:18 AM | Report abuse

We'll get Beck off the air.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 14, 2009 12:15 AM | Report abuse

drindl:

Glenn Beck's sponsors today were the UPS Store, Hoveround, http://www.CUREepilepsy.org ADT, the Jewelry Exchange, Fullbar, cancercenter.com, Nutrisystem, Sobakawa cloud pillow, woundedwarriorproject.org, Lever Can, diabetes care club, and Time Life "I Can Only Imagine" New Platinum Edition CDs. You'd better hurry up and contact these too.

Posted by: JakeD | August 14, 2009 12:04 AM | Report abuse

NYT on the "death panel" lies:

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/08/14/health/policy/14panel.html?hp

Most of the people repeating this know perfectly well it's not true but go ahead and repeat it anyway, including that devil-witch Palin. They don't care if it's false as long as it gets in the way of an Obama initiative.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 14, 2009 12:04 AM | Report abuse

Careful with the personal insults.

==

You're more insulting than anyone here.

Yesterday you insulted my relationship, and my lover doesn't post here. You make jokes about assassination. When you don't get responses you post steadily more unhinged crap until someone bites. You're some kind of isolated shut-in with no friends and no life and you must be seriously deprived if you get any kind of enjoyment from what you do here.

Come on, Jake, post some real information about yourself, I mean real stuff, and someone here will absolutely arrange for you to get a Clockwork Orange style Surprise Visit.

Nobody wants you here, you lying sack.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 13, 2009 11:41 PM | Report abuse

And oh, he's insanely repetitive.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 13, 2009 11:33 PM | Report abuse

"He's nasty, sarcastic, snide, and has never as long as I've been here expressed anything resembling an original thought."

His joke the other day about Obama getting shot was just beyond the fu*king pale.

Not to mention the stuff that he posted today about resource allocation. It's just disgusting.

Posted by: DDAWD | August 13, 2009 11:30 PM | Report abuse

I think you have a point of view that deserves to be stated.

==

Could not disagree more. Jake lies in virtually every post, and makes himself the topic at every opportunity. He's nasty, sarcastic, snide, and has never as long as I've been here expressed anything resembling an original thought. He serves as a proxy for the Republican Party and slavishly echoes all their positions on everything. Atop all that, he is really dumb.

I like you, I think you're good people, but I really really wish you (and mark_in_austin) would stop dignifying Jake's trolling with responses. You'll note that when he's cornered he calls out to you for solace and as long as he gets it he allows himself to think he belongs here. You do this forum a disservice by encouraging him, I'm sure you regard it as equanimity but as long as this stupid vicious azzhole posts here we'll have very few discussions as good as we had today before he showed up and spoiled it as he always does.

Read from the point where he appeared.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 13, 2009 11:24 PM | Report abuse

@Jake - I wasn't following the other thread, just catching up on this one after work. [Made dinner-pizza with a piperade base, roasted eggplant rounds, and topped with gorgonzola. Yumm. It was worth burning the roof of my mouth.]

@others - My view is that back and forth makes the blog less interesting. Zouk is away and, in my view, deserved a time out for using vulgarities repeatedly when referring to another poster. I am encouraged by CC's attempt to bring a bit more civility to the form. The comments section is interesting, folks, and I hope that it remains so. Even if I make no headway with anyone, I'll keep expressing my opinions and remain hopeful.

I remain respectfully yours,

The Fairlington Blade

Up the Blades!

http://www.sufc.co.uk

Posted by: FairlingtonBlade | August 13, 2009 11:20 PM | Report abuse

Careful with the personal insults.

Posted by: JakeD | August 13, 2009 11:16 PM | Report abuse

"I think you have a point of view that deserves to be stated."

Staunchly disagree here. If he cuts out the racism, bigotry, homophobia, then get back to me.

Posted by: DDAWD | August 13, 2009 11:09 PM | Report abuse

DrainYou:

Please re-read FB's post noting that I have not been here all day. Nice try through.

Posted by: JakeD | August 13, 2009 11:02 PM | Report abuse

Paul, I apologize, but what makes you think he really wants to talk about issues, actual issues and not just talking points? I mean, what gives you that hope?

Posted by: drindl | August 13, 2009 10:54 PM | Report abuse

FB,
Jakeyboy is going to be gone soon if he doesn't stop posting on here non-stop and injecting himself and the bs crap the Repugs are trying to sell onto everyone else that posts here all day long.

He's like a stalker and it will stop.

Posted by: DrainYou | August 13, 2009 10:51 PM | Report abuse

Forget about 'Jake.' He's not worth bothering with. He's the replacement trollbot for zouk. there's a million of them, and all they do is waste your time.

Posted by: drindl | August 13, 2009 10:48 PM | Report abuse

mibrooks27:

No link to the specific prohibition? How about just the Section number?

Posted by: JakeD | August 13, 2009 10:47 PM | Report abuse

@Jake - A short follow-up. I am not suggesting that you do not post here. Just that the back and forth has gotten a little dull. I'm aware of the general opinion CF8 has about Republicans or conservatives. Though I am neither, I think he is for the most part wrong. [I'll exclude political operatives.] I have good friends who are staunch conservative, including those with good hearts and advanced degrees.

I take you and others at face value. I honestly don't care if Chris is making sandwiches down at the local Banh Mi or doing database work for Oracle. I don't care if you're a retired attorney in San Diego or an intern for Michelle Bachman. I'm a physicist and don't really care if anyone around here doesn't believe me. We have a unique forum here--an opportunity to discuss important issues. I think you have a point of view that deserves to be stated. The back and forth distracts from that.

BB

Posted by: FairlingtonBlade | August 13, 2009 10:46 PM | Report abuse

It's amazing the way the Republican party has been able to get the low and middle-income people in their base (mostly the South) to throw logic out the window and not only accept the GOP's BS talking points but to actually go out and protest against their own well-being i.e. healthcare, tax cuts for the rich etc.


The TeaBagger "parties" were the perfect example of this. The Republican oligarchy had working class dittoheads from their base, who are most likely barely living paycheck to paycheck, out protesting the rich getting a small tax increase and themselves getting a tax cut. And they're actually proud of themselves for doing this!

Posted by: DrainYou | August 13, 2009 10:43 PM | Report abuse

FairlingtonBlade:

Et tu, BB? My "first" post this afternoon was actually at 4:10 PM on the "Nelson Strikes Back" thread, and "chrisfox8" responded at 4:18 PM. If you read that thread, the "go jump in a lake" provocation was FROM him. No need to apologize ; )

Posted by: JakeD | August 13, 2009 10:41 PM | Report abuse

I see JakeD is still on here 24 hrs day...I swear, all of these angry old doughy middle aged white guys, like JakeyD, who make up what's left of the Repug base, probably haven't gotten laid one time in the last 10-15 years. That's why they're so delusional and angry.

Posted by: DrainYou | August 13, 2009 10:37 PM | Report abuse

@Jake - Your first post was at 4:59 p.m. Chris's post at 5:09 contained no insulting language directly towards you. At 5:20 p.m., you specifically addressed CF8 and invited him to "go jump in a lake". That is the provocation to which I referred. The first post that insulted you ("old fool") occurred at 5:59 p.m., though was directed to another poster suggesting that he/she not engage you. It took about another 40 minutes before there was any back and forth that I suspect you wanted. All I can ask is, was it good for you? I'm not going to post further about this topic as, like the birth certificate discussion, I simply find it tiresome.

Back on a substantive topic. To be precise, the supposed death panels. Quoting from Tuesday's Post: "Johnny Isakson, a Republican Senator from Georgia, tells the Washington Post. 'How someone could take an end of life directive or a living will as that is nuts,' he said. 'You’re putting the authority in the individual rather than the government. I don’t know how that got so mixed up.'" As the father of a child with a disability, and unlike Sarah Palin, I am unwilling to use my child to score political points. Dishonest ones at that.

BB

Posted by: FairlingtonBlade | August 13, 2009 10:34 PM | Report abuse

"Just because you're paranoid doesn't meant they aren't out to get you"

A classic post from jakieboy...

Posted by: drindl | August 13, 2009 10:26 PM | Report abuse

You're not wanted here, Jake. You're an irritant and nothing more. But you know that.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 13, 2009 10:17 PM | Report abuse

Thanks for the info, margaretmeyers. I hereby retract what I said about The One being deceptive.

Posted by: DDAWD | August 13, 2009 10:15 PM | Report abuse

No, Jake, Rep. Lamar Smith was referring to two amendments by *him*. The first would not have reimbursed hospitals for emergency treatment of illegal immigrants. The other, and inhumane and very likely to have been struck down as Unconstitutional, would have denied emergency room treatment of illegal immigrant. Some loopholes! Again, the legislation passed by the House and that proposed by the Senate, would specifically exclude illegal immigrants. Moreover, Arlan Spector stated in one of his town hall meetings that he wouldn't vote for a version that included illegal immigrants. THAT is one of the agreements that the Blue Dog Democrats got for supporting any sort of healthcare legislation.

Posted by: mibrooks27 | August 13, 2009 10:14 PM | Report abuse

@BB: and I need to say that I enjoyed the discussion a lot more before that lying son of a b|tch showed up. I don't enjoy the name-calling, however cathartic it may be. It's distasteful to me, not that I expect you to believe me, but it is.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 13, 2009 10:12 PM | Report abuse

FairlingtonBlade:

"Provoked"?! He responded less than ten minutes after my first post. No credit for me stating away all morning?

Posted by: JakeD | August 13, 2009 10:10 PM | Report abuse

I am simply reporting what Rep. Lamar Smith has stated -- an amendment by GOP to close loopholes was rejected -- if later the Dems included specific language, I would appreciate a link.

Posted by: JakeD | August 13, 2009 10:03 PM | Report abuse

@CF8 - I have to give you credit, you resisted for a lot longer than I thought you would (and were provoked).

@leichtman - I spent a few minutes hunting to try and find the story I read in the paper (I was in San Diego for a week for a conference). Sadly, I couldn't get the write key words. Maybe it is time for Bing! My recollection is that the Latino share of the vote was roughly half the share of the population. Put somewhat differently, the Anglo share of the vote had declined, but much less than the fraction.

One note of hope. The participation rate of second generation Latinos more closely mirrors the overall U.S. population. So, there is a demographic time bomb, it's just on a relatively slow fuse. Speaking as an Anglo father of two Latino* kids, I think that's a good thing. *Their mother was born in Latin America, though their genetics are more European than anything else.

BB

Posted by: FairlingtonBlade | August 13, 2009 10:00 PM | Report abuse

You certainly were dead on, foxy, today's discussion was a lot better before jakey started spouting his usual nonsense.

We need to be better about not engaging him; then he'll go pollute a different blog.

Posted by: jasperanselm | August 13, 2009 9:46 PM | Report abuse

Actually, in the House version (the only version passed so far) and in the proposed Senate versions of health care reform, for better or for worse, illegal immigrants are specifically denied access to the public system and to any public fund contributions to private insurance, also.

==

Wow, you mean JakeD LIED?!?

My head is whirling. I need to go lay down. I may throw up.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 13, 2009 8:58 PM | Report abuse

Jake's Lie #3 and counting:

"Also, why did the Dems refuse to allow a spocific amendment that would deny Obamacare to illegal aliens?"

Posted by: leichtman | August 13, 2009 8:49 PM | Report abuse

SPECIAL TO: chrisfox8

BLOG-SPAMMERS TO FACE OFFICIAL CRACKDOWN?


Is the Inspector General at the Office of the Director of National Intelligence about to crack down on U.S. government intelligence agencies that deploy legions of paid "blog-spammers" while conducting surveillance programs in the name of national security?

Speculation has it that this tactic -- apparently intended to divert attention from reader postings that do not comport with the ideological outlook of agency bureaucrats -- has come to the attention of Roslyn Mazer, inspector general in the Office of the Director of National Intelligence.

While there is no official confirmation, media watchers are theorizing that her office may formulate formal guidelines to ensure that such activity does not violate the Constitutional rights of media outlets, or their readers, or run afoul of federal statutes and regulations that prohibit agencies from engaging in domestic propaganda campaigns.

While it cannot be confirmed at this time, it is believed that this issue was brought to the attention of the IG/DNI by a continuous stream of blog-spamming inflicted upon The Washington Post's "The Fix" political blog, authored by Chris Cillizza.

Ironically, it is hypothesized that algorithmic analysis of political blog surveillance that specifically mentioned the name of Ms. Mazer may have brought the issue of blog-spamming to her personal attention.

http://nowpublic.com/world/govt-fusion-center-spying-pretext-harass-and-censor

(NOTE: The preceding post is intended for entertainment value only.)

Posted by: scrivener50 | August 13, 2009 8:36 PM | Report abuse

chrisfox, jaked - Actually, in the House version (the only version passed so far) and in the proposed Senate versions of health care reform, for better or for worse, illegal immigrants are specifically denied access to the public system and to any public fund contributions to private insurance, also. The House legislation contains exactly one loophole, for emergency medical assistance ONLY. That provision was place in because, presently, hospitals and doctors have to eat those costs and it is driving some into bankruptcy in border states. That's it. And the opponents of health care reform have fastened onto that and claim that the reform act "funds healthcare for illegal immigrants". It's really despicably dishonest, not to say disingenuous, of them.

Posted by: mibrooks27 | August 13, 2009 8:24 PM | Report abuse

If you can't come up with any reason why more DNRs would be harmful I guess it's safe to assume you're just throwing out Limbaugh points and you don't really know what you're talking about.

I think having more people think realistically about how to handle the ends of their lives is a good thing. I don't think it's in anyone's interests, neither the nation's nor patients', for every terminal condition to be blown up into another Terry Shiavo.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 13, 2009 8:21 PM | Report abuse

Time for everyone to go have a drink on the porch. May I suggest limonata (sanpellegrino mixer -- very tart) and coconut rum.
Yeah, it's a girl's drink. I'm a girl. Wanna makes sumpin of it?

Posted by: margaretmeyers | August 13, 2009 8:19 PM | Report abuse

Thanks for the links.

Posted by: JakeD | August 13, 2009 8:16 PM | Report abuse

My new question would be "Where have I used the word "Mandates" (sounds like something "chrisfox8" would do)?

==

Why do you post this kind of snotty crap? Are you really so out of touch that you think homophobic 50s bigotry wins you any points?

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 13, 2009 8:12 PM | Report abuse

St Petersburg Times does a nice parsing, Jake, of the non-endorsement.

http://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/statements/2009/aug/12/barack-obama/obama-goes-too-far-when-he-says-health-reform-bill/

At the end of July, AARP was verbally very positive about the bills, which leads Obama to say they are "on board." Now that the conversation has heated up to such unreasonable levels AARP is cooling their language -- probably a good idea for everybody. But, I think you can see from their many articles and press releases that AARP really likes what is in the bills.

Posted by: margaretmeyers | August 13, 2009 8:10 PM | Report abuse

Also, why did the Dems refuse to allow a spocific amendment that would deny Obamacare to illegal aliens?

==

This is a diversion and of vanishing relevance to the discussion, only of interest to the 19-percenters.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 13, 2009 8:08 PM | Report abuse

I think that increased DNR orders would be harmful.

==

Why?

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 13, 2009 8:04 PM | Report abuse

Yes, I know that the AARP wants healthcare reform -- at least until the new polling come out -- but no where does it say that they have reviewed all of the proposals out there and concluded that "none of the bills contain anything harmful to the health care currently received by seniors". That's what you claimed.

Just as one example, I think that increased DNR orders would be harmful. I haven't seen anything from the AARP on Section 1233. Also, why did the Dems refuse to allow a spocific amendment that would deny Obamacare to illegal aliens? Those are just some of the pending questions out there.

What I did find, however, is this letter to Rep. Waxman drawing a line in the sand:

"AARP cannot support any efforts to target Medicare beneficiaries for increased cost-sharing or other benefit cuts. In addition, we cannot support backdoor attempts to finance health care reform through increases in beneficiary costs or reductions in benefits, for example, through use of commissions or other process mechanisms. Moreover, we cannot support any mechanism that exempts providers but leaves beneficiaries vulnerable."

http://www.aarp.org/health/articles/b_rand_letter_to_chairman_waxman.html

Needless to say, the debate is far from over.

Posted by: JakeD | August 13, 2009 8:02 PM | Report abuse

Great thread until liar-boi showed up

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 13, 2009 7:56 PM | Report abuse

Gosh Jake, the story is all over the newspapers, so it shouldn't be hard to find. Start with
http://www.examiner.com/x-1172-Progressive-Politics-Examiner~y2009m8d12-AARP-promotes-health-care-reform

www.aarp.org

http://aarp.convio.net/site/PageNavigator/Myths_vs_Facts

The story is all over AARP. Don't be put off by healthactionnow -- it is the the political action wing of AARP. This morning I also saw an intelligent refutation of that shoddy bullet point BS put around by Free Republic. It said it was from the office of Congressman Holden of PA, but that link is at work and I can't find it by browsing.

Posted by: margaretmeyers | August 13, 2009 7:49 PM | Report abuse

margaretmeyers:

Do you have a link to the AARP saying "none of the bills contain anything harmful to the health care currently received by seniors"? That's not anywhere on Google.

Posted by: JakeD | August 13, 2009 7:45 PM | Report abuse

U.S. GOVERNMENT PROGRAM TORTURES UNJUSTLY TARGETED CITIZENS WITH MICROWAVE, LASER RADIATION WEAPONRY, SAYS MAINSTREAM JOURNALIST

==

What would it take to make you stop this crap?

Nobody wants to read it, nobody thinks it's anything but tinfoil hat paranoia, and no I'm not in the pay of some secret organization trying to suppress "the truth"

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 13, 2009 4:12 PM | Report abuse

***

CAUTION:

DO NOT CLICK ON THE LINK BELOW!

BECAUSE THE (PAID?) BLOG SPAMMER 'CHRISFOX8' HAS DECIDED THAT YOU DO NOT WANT TO READ THIS.

AND WE ALL MUST OBEY.

OR ELSE.

NO! NO! NO!

N-E-I-N!


http://nowpublic.com/world/gestapo-usa-govt-funded-vigilante-network-terrorizes-america

OR (if link is corrupted or disabled by paid trolls):

http://NowPublic.com/scrivener RE: "GESTAPO USA"

Posted by: scrivener50 | August 13, 2009 7:45 PM | Report abuse

this is what the Senator said just last week about counseling(his words you intrepret)


How someone could take an end-of-life directive, or a living will as that is nuts. You’re putting the authority in the individual rather than the government. I don’t know how that got so mixed up.”

Question two: “You’re saying this is not a question of government, it’s for individuals?” Senator Isakson: “It empowers you to be able to make decisions at a difficult time, rather than having the government make them for you.”

Question three: “The policy here, as I understand it, is that Medicare would cover a counseling session with your doctor on end-of-life options.” Senator Isakson: “Correct. And it’s a voluntary deal.”


Posted by: leichtman | August 13, 2009 7:41 PM | Report abuse

margaretmeyers:

Just because you're paranoid doesn't meant they aren't out to get you. I do apologize, however, as I missed your concession that Obama lied about the AARP being on board and I missed your "they have not endorsed any of the proposals yet" buried in your 7:03 PM post.

Now, all I am asking is if you have a link to the AARP saying what you DID claim they said "none of the bills contain anything harmful to the health care currently received by seniors"? Thanks in advance.

Posted by: JakeD | August 13, 2009 7:33 PM | Report abuse

jake's lie #2. Senator Isakson as a US Senator had nothing to do with the HOUSE language.

"I received a request from a reader about the bill that Sen. Johnny Isakson (R-GA) sponsored to allow Medicare reimbursements to doctors for end of life consultation. "It turns out he originally sponsored this bill when HE WAS A MEMBER OF THE HOUSE, and it was not controversial"

Posted by: leichtman | August 13, 2009 7:31 PM | Report abuse

"Jake, try to keep up. I said in my post that AARP has not endorsed any of the bills, however they have said that so far none of the bills contain anything harmful to the health care currently received by seniors AND that all of them contain many fine features that will BENEFIT their constituency.

SO, they have not endorsed any bill yet, but they like what they see inthe bills. :-)"

Ehh, I find that Obama was being dishonest. When someone says AARP wouldn't endorse a bill if..., I take it as an implication that AARP did endorse a bill. It's a literally true statement, but very misleading.

Posted by: DDAWD | August 13, 2009 7:31 PM | Report abuse

leichtman:

My new question would be "Where have I used the word "Mandates" (sounds like something "chrisfox8" would do)? In addition, you still haven't retracted your claim that a SENATOR wrote the provision in a HOUSE bill, so (again) may I suggest a refresher course in "Schoolhouse Rock"?

Posted by: JakeD | August 13, 2009 7:31 PM | Report abuse

Jake, at 53 I have already had my GP ask me if I have a living will and would I like to write one. I guess this is a service offered under my BC/BS coverage.

HEY! those for-profit-devils are trying to kill me!

Posted by: margaretmeyers | August 13, 2009 7:27 PM | Report abuse

lie number 1 jake is that you have repeatedly posted that hr3200 "Mandates" end of life counseling.

Once again jake you have repeated that lie here all day long. Where is the word Mandatory, Fines or penalties. If you can not produce it sir in any bill draft language then it is simply a lie. In court under oath that is called perjury but I will stick to just calling it a made up bald faced lie. Next question sir.

Posted by: leichtman | August 13, 2009 7:23 PM | Report abuse

margaretmeyers:

You have an AARP link for that?

Posted by: JakeD | August 13, 2009 7:21 PM | Report abuse

Oh pish and tush, you've lied a dozen times right here in this thread. Nobody takes you seriously.

Great discussion, till you showed up.

Why don't you drag out that crusty copy of "Runner's World" and spank it to Palin again? Let the rest of us talk.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 13, 2009 7:19 PM | Report abuse

Jake, try to keep up. I said in my post that AARP has not endorsed any of the bills, however they have said that so far none of the bills contain anything harmful to the health care currently received by seniors AND that all of them contain many fine features that will BENEFIT their constituency.

SO, they have not endorsed any bill yet, but they like what they see inthe bills. :-)

Posted by: margaretmeyers | August 13, 2009 7:18 PM | Report abuse

I haven't lied once, therefore you haven't caught anything, here or in court. Keep up the ad hominem personal attacks though.

Posted by: JakeD | August 13, 2009 7:16 PM | Report abuse

god help your clients because deliberate lying in court in most jurisdictions has legal consequences

Posted by: leichtman | August 13, 2009 7:14 PM | Report abuse

As I've told you, several times, I am a retired lawyer.

==

I don't believe anything you write, Jake, I've caught you lying far too many times.

And I don't think "retired" is quite the right word. Close, though.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 13, 2009 7:13 PM | Report abuse

chrisfox8:

As I've told you, several times, I am a retired lawyer. I think I even gave you my State Bar # once.

Posted by: JakeD | August 13, 2009 7:11 PM | Report abuse

margaretmeyers:

"Obama lied about AARP endorsement"

http://voices.kansascity.com/node/5433

Posted by: JakeD | August 13, 2009 7:08 PM | Report abuse

http://s3.moveon.org/pdfs/hr3200-sec1233.pdf

this is the draft language of "one of the 3 bills" in committee.

I challenge anyone to show me precisely where the words MANDATORY, Penalties or fines are mentioned even once since Jake says he is sure about it just like he was sure that McCain would be POTUS and that Terry Schivo called him and demanded extra ordinary care.

Read it for yourselves bloggers, don't depend on others with an agenda to tell you what it means.

Posted by: leichtman | August 13, 2009 7:07 PM | Report abuse

P.S. -- I am a trained lawyer that has expertise in the drafting of many, many bills.

==

ANYONE who had ANY experience writing for legal consumption would know to use "who" instead of "that."

You're a liar and a phony. You're certainly no lawyer.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 13, 2009 7:07 PM | Report abuse

But please understand from your own admission using YOUR EXACT WORDS, they are nothing but garbage. now lets move on because some of us truly understand that there is a healthcare crisis in the US that we are ranked 37th in the world in life expectancy and that we pay 18% vs 12% for medical care that other advanced societies who are paying who are actually in in the top ten in Life Expectancy.

==

I think you've forgotten for a moment that you are addressing a stupid troll who will never tell the truth about anything. Forget about getting any admission from him, it's not worth the effort. Anyone who's posted here more than a few hours knows he's a liar.

We do indeed face a major healthcare crisis here, and not only because we have 50 million without health insurance. We have people suffering and dying from preventable disease and by some metrics we're behind THIRD WORLD countries.

Like infant mortality.

But we have people like JakeD who would rather see people suffering and dying, would rather we went on losing infants to poor prenatal care and crib death, would rather we went on spending trillions and getting little bang for the buck .. rather than see Obama win one.

We euthanize stray cats, but not people like that. Wow.

And THEY'RE worried about abortion, and claim we plan to euthanize the elderly.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 13, 2009 7:06 PM | Report abuse

If that radical group, AARP, thinks the proposals are good for senior citizens I think we can stop wringing our hands about death panels, forced living wills and that 85 years old with cancer, bad hips, erectile dysfunction, washerwoman's elbow and high blood pressure.

AARP is very quick to sniff out anything that works against their constituency -- it isn't there. No, they have not endorsed any of the proposals yet. They are holding out for the sweetest deal they can swing. I'm thinking free limousine service after dark for anyone with macular degeneration.

Posted by: margaretmeyers | August 13, 2009 7:03 PM | Report abuse

leichtman:

No, what I said is "Re: "penalty" I don't recall that being included in the many provisions that the IRS will now enforce, but you are welcome to check Sections 301-453." As for your claim that a SENATOR wrote the provision in a HOUSE bill, may I suggest a refresher course in "Schoolhouse Rock"?

P.S. -- I am a trained lawyer that has expertise in the drafting of many, many bills.

Posted by: JakeD | August 13, 2009 7:00 PM | Report abuse

OK you have now admitted your own lie congrats. I read that language which 1. Again was written by a R US Senator 2. Is from 1 of 4 proposed plans and
NO WHERE DOES IT STATE THAT ITS MANDATORY.

No Where.

I asked for proof that it is either mandatory or has penalties or fines and this is what YOU SAID:
"I read that" as a requirement every five years (but permissively more often). Fine, both sides are entitled to our opinions, but since the STATED GOAL of Obamacare is to reduce costs, it is "reasonable to assume" that pressure will be brought to bear on seniors to sign DNR orders.

look at your own words sir and you can understand why no one takes your post seriously:

1. I HAVE READ that as a REQUIREMENT;
2. ITS REASONABLE TO ASSUME

are you a soothsayer that is chnaneling what Rush is feeding you or a trained lawyer that has expertise in the drafting of this bill? My guess the former.

Hey its a free country and I will defend your 1st Amendment constitutional right to post any garbage that makes you feel better. But please understand from your own admission using YOUR EXACT WORDS, they are nothing but garbage. now lets move on because some of us truly understand that there is a healthcare crisis in the US that we are ranked 37th in the world in life expectancy and that we pay 18% vs 12% for medical care that other advanced societies who are paying who are actually in in the top ten in Life Expectancy.

Posted by: leichtman | August 13, 2009 6:56 PM | Report abuse

DDAWD:

You're welcome, for the link to said article.

Posted by: JakeD | August 13, 2009 6:49 PM | Report abuse

leichtman:

The quoted section in my 6:22 PM post was, ideed, from H.R. 3200 -- where else are you implying it came from -- Sen. Isakson (not being in the House of Representatives) has stated he did NOT write a similar provision in the Senate bill. Next canard?

Posted by: JakeD | August 13, 2009 6:48 PM | Report abuse

By the way, I strongly recommend you read the Lancet article. It goes through the considerations that are taken into account when deciding how to allocate scarce medical resources. It's long, but there are a few charts in there that condenses it down well.

Posted by: DDAWD | August 13, 2009 6:47 PM | Report abuse

Where is the tort reform - DEMOCRUDS ?

Posted by: hclark1 | August 13, 2009 6:45 PM | Report abuse

I'm lying about "not guaranteeing health services to patients with dementia" too?

==

Ahh, I can see why you would be worried about THAT

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 13, 2009 6:44 PM | Report abuse

First "official" site scouting mission for GTMO detainees to be relocated in Michigan:

http://voices.washingtonpost.com/44/2009/08/13/visit_to_mich_prison_where_gua.html

Posted by: JakeD | August 13, 2009 6:44 PM | Report abuse

Anyone can be put on dialysis or a respirator indefinitely, but the cost is a real issue. Not everyone can get a new heart or kidney or liver. You have to decide who gets it.

==

And to refer to such decisions as rationing, or to insist that those decisions would be something new under the Obama plan, is a vicious slander.

There aren't enough organ donors for everyone who needs a new liver, and someone whose need is greater by virtue of youth or by virtue of unsummoned affliction (e.g. liver disease as opposed to a lifetime of heavy drinking) will get the transplant while someone else is denied it.

Of course Jake is lying .. he's posting again.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 13, 2009 6:42 PM | Report abuse

One more time jake you can scream, rant and distort all you want about a certain section of a draft version of a supposed bill provision written by R Isakson and :

1. You refuse to acknowledge there are 4 draft versions out there in committee;
2. You refuse to post the exact language in the bill b/c we all know where you are pulling it from;
3. you refuse to acknowldege that a R conservative Senator has already acknowledged that he wrote that provision that you rant about.

Your side is pathetic. Lie, scare and misdirect while the rest of the country suffers from mounting unpaid medical bills and millions having to file for bankruptcy. Should make you proud to be part of the 19%ers.
We know the attitude of your crowd; I got mine the heck with the rest of America, we lived through 8 years of that attitude.
Incidentally has anyone bothered to remind you that your side lost in November and that there are consequences to elections. Just wanted to make sure you were not asleep over the last 9 months.

Posted by: leichtman | August 13, 2009 6:40 PM | Report abuse

I'm lying about "not guaranteeing health services to patients with dementia" too?

Posted by: JakeD | August 13, 2009 6:39 PM | Report abuse

JakeD is lying. The complete lives system is based on a variety of factors, of which age is one of them.

But the thing to remember is that this article is about things like organ transplants. When you give it to someone, there is necessarily someone who doesn't get it. This is somewhat related to end of life issues, but not very much so. Anyone can be put on dialysis or a respirator indefinitely, but the cost is a real issue. Not everyone can get a new heart or kidney or liver. You have to decide who gets it.

It's a heart-wrenching decision that must be made in a cold and calculated manner. It's pretty tough to make these decisions. jaked is a sick f*** for making such light about it.

Posted by: DDAWD | August 13, 2009 6:37 PM | Report abuse

Flags and eagles and freedom-freedom-freedom?

Nutbar site.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 13, 2009 6:35 PM | Report abuse

In a different article written more than 10 years ago for the Hastings Center Report, Emanuel said health services should not be guaranteed to "individuals who are irreversibly prevented from being or becoming participating citizens." Emanuel wrote, "An obvious example is not guaranteeing health services to patients with dementia."

As a part of a better solution to health reform, the NCPA is taking an active role in promoting consumer-driven health care options by supporting a national petition drive to educate citizens. The "Free Our Health Care Now" petition has already been signed by over 620,000 people opposed to a government nationalization of our health care system:

http://freeourhealthcarenow.com/

Posted by: JakeD | August 13, 2009 6:30 PM | Report abuse

Let anyone who's against reducing healthcare costs state it out in the open, because we are getting GOUGED on these costs right now. Americans pay about twice as much for our healthcare as other countries that have universal health care as a right, and they get care as good as ours, too.

There's nothing sinister about imperatives to reduce costs, however much the illiterate howlers would like to think so.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 13, 2009 6:27 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: JakeD | August 13, 2009 6:27 PM | Report abuse

P.S. -- I won't be shutting up, nor apologizing for the "cut and paste" from Section 1233 I just posted in response to you -- as "chrisfox8" says, if you don't like it, jump in the lake.

Posted by: JakeD | August 13, 2009 6:25 PM | Report abuse

'll say one thing, Palin and her ilk have succeeded in making this debate needlessly ugly. I guess she has that luxury. She's never had to struggle in her life and doesn't give a second's thought to people who do. It's all just a game to these people.

==

I really hope the Feds get some dirt on that witch and she ends up in prison

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 13, 2009 6:24 PM | Report abuse

Also, people who have heard of Tylenol are more likely to take it than those who haven't.

People who are screened for diabetes are more likely to take insulin than those who haven't.

Ooooooh, Obama is trying to push his panel of death, acetaminophen, and insulin!

==

Why, that's distorting the marketplace!

I'm chaining myself to the White House fence RIGHT NOW!

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 13, 2009 6:22 PM | Report abuse

leichtman:

"Subject to paragraphs (3) and (4), the term `advance care planning consultation' means a consultation between the individual and a practitioner described in paragraph (2) regarding advance care planning, if, subject to paragraph (3), the individual involved has not had such a consultation within the last 5 years ... advance care planning consultation with respect to an individual may be conducted more frequently than provided under paragraph (1) if there is a significant change in the health condition of the individual, including diagnosis of a chronic, progressive, life-limiting disease, a life-threatening or terminal diagnosis or life-threatening injury, or upon admission to a skilled nursing facility, a long-term care facility (as defined by the Secretary), or a hospice program."

I read that as a requirement every five years (but permissively more often). Those like "mikeinmidland" think the patient can sit there and simply say nothing, so it's not a "requirement". Fine, both sides are entitled to our opinions, but since the STATED GOAL of Obamacare is to reduce costs, it is reasonable to assume that pressure will be brought to bear on seniors to sign DNR orders. Re: "penalty" I don't recall that being included in the many provisions that the IRS will now enforce, but you are welcome to check Sections 301-453.

Posted by: JakeD | August 13, 2009 6:22 PM | Report abuse

if you have the cajones jakeD post the whole link to this lancet canard you and Rush are spreading not just your preverted version of the truth. Otherwise shut up and stop your ranting.Apparently you have become the master of cut and post rumor mongering and flat out lies and distortions. I presume you have really cheap healthcare, maybe govt TRiCare and like you and the rest of your buds you don't care much if the rest of us go broke with your obstructionist strategy. We heard that clap trap from you throughout the election just to remind new viewers here.

Posted by: leichtman | August 13, 2009 6:22 PM | Report abuse

So when Charles Lane said that doctors would be getting money to provide end of life counseling, did he mean that doctors would be getting paid to perform their duties which includes providing end of life counseling? That's incredibly dishonest of him, of course the whole column was dishonest.

I'll say one thing, Palin and her ilk have succeeded in making this debate needlessly ugly. I guess she has that luxury. She's never had to struggle in her life and doesn't give a second's thought to people who do. It's all just a game to these people.

Posted by: DDAWD | August 13, 2009 6:22 PM | Report abuse

"While DNR orders are not "mandated" the AMA Journal has already acknowledged that patients subjected to such "counseling" are more likely to sign such an order."

Also, people who have heard of Tylenol are more likely to take it than those who haven't.

People who are screened for diabetes are more likely to take insulin than those who haven't.

Ooooooh, Obama is trying to push his panel of death, acetaminophen, and insulin!

Posted by: DDAWD | August 13, 2009 6:15 PM | Report abuse

The section of the Social Security Act which is proposed to be amended (42 U.S.C. 1395x) is Definition of Services. There is no change to the old text except to make room for the new subparagraph EE, which defines the consultation. If it doesn't conform to the definition, the provider will not be reimbursed per the other sections.

Posted by: mikeinmidland | August 13, 2009 6:13 PM | Report abuse

Of course, these guys are the same ones who claimed that all the people clamoring to see Obama in the campaign last year wouldn't come out to vote for him.

==

Or as Frank Rich put it .. they're the people who said that young people don't vote and Fred Thompson is the man to beat.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 13, 2009 6:12 PM | Report abuse

No one said those fainting at the mere glimpse of The One wouldn't vote for him.

Posted by: JakeD | August 13, 2009 6:12 PM | Report abuse

"H.R. 3200, Sec. 1233 (Pg. 425, Lines 4-12) specifically requires that end-of-life counseling sessions must be conducted every five years for patients over the age of 65 (and more often, depending on deteriorating health). While DNR orders are not "mandated" the AMA Journal has already acknowledged that patients subjected to such "counseling" are more likely to sign such an order."

1. First of all there are 3 House versions and 1 Senate version of the framework of abill that has not made it to reconciliation (did you bother to mention that)so don't see the relevancy of a particular page to some draft provision that R Isakson wrote;
2. I have my doubts its mandated as you suggest-I want to see actual proof not just your conjecture;
3. Just b/c the AMA claims that many people who review their living will and advanced directives come to that conclusion does not deny that the patient themselves voluntarily come to that conclusion;
4. Most lawyers charge $250 to $1000 to write advanced directives and living wills although they can likely get them at minimal cost on the internet, so I see it as a gift the patient can simply ignore. Are you delusionally suggesting there are penalties and fines for not reviewing those choices? If you have proof of that LETS SEE IT !

But the idea that you are coming here and spreading your conjectures that it is mandatory just sounds like more R hysteria bull.

I notice you just posted its your conclusion. Enough already with that garbage.

Posted by: leichtman | August 13, 2009 6:12 PM | Report abuse

And there are people on this board who support that. When the uncivil and violent rhetoric against Obama stops, I will stop mine. When the GOP leadership stops lying about EVERYTHING, and inciting people to violence, I will stop saying uncivil things about them.

==

There was a time when the nutbars were on the fringe of the party, now there in its center. People who engage in disruption don't deserve to be answered with civility, they deserve to be shunned and ostracized.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 13, 2009 6:11 PM | Report abuse

"Intensity of voters is extremely important in politics, at the end of they day, the only thing that counts is who shows up to vote. You can count on the people at the town hall meetings to show up to vote in 2010. Not so sure about Obama voters. Posted by: vbhoomes"

Of course, these guys are the same ones who claimed that all the people clamoring to see Obama in the campaign last year wouldn't come out to vote for him.

Posted by: DDAWD | August 13, 2009 6:10 PM | Report abuse

drindl:

The Bush White House got threats every day too -- the sky is not falling -- besides, 18 USC Sec. 871 only protects the LEGAL President of the United States.

Posted by: JakeD | August 13, 2009 6:07 PM | Report abuse

mikeinmidland:

We went through all that already, so we'll have to just agree to disagree.

Posted by: JakeD | August 13, 2009 6:04 PM | Report abuse

"The other issues I raised are very real as well. Instead of answering those issues, you just bashed me as nutjob. Which, is typical of politics. It's the same, old, tired partisan politics that Obama criticized in his campaign."

Actually, you were asked about the issue of death panels and why government would be worse than private. You gave some nonsense answer about Obama and Pelosi stocking these panels.

If you don't want to be bashed as a nutjob, stop behaving like one. If you want to say stupid things, then don't cry when people assume that someone who is saying all these stupid things must be a stupid person.

Posted by: DDAWD | August 13, 2009 6:04 PM | Report abuse

bsimon -- In my opinion some of the anti-GOP rhetoric is still uncivil and should stop.'

There have been in the last few days several incidents of people threatening the president's life, some appearing with loaded handguns near him and waving crazy signs.

And there are people on this board who support that. When the uncivil and violent rhetoric against Obama stops, I will stop mine. When the GOP leadership stops lying about EVERYTHING, and inciting people to violence, I will stop saying uncivil things about them. Just how much restraint do you expect from people who are d*mn tired of being slapped around?

Posted by: drindl | August 13, 2009 6:03 PM | Report abuse

Did he ever mention where he lived, anyone? That info could be useful to the Bureau.

==

The FBI can get IP information from the WaPo logs and go right to his house, which is supposedly in San Diego but that's probably just another lie.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 13, 2009 6:01 PM | Report abuse

@drindl: I wouldn't bother. He's just a fool hoping to get some attention by posting outrageous crap. We're having a good discussion today, let's keep it that way.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 13, 2009 5:59 PM | Report abuse

In the medical journal "The Lancet" (January 2009) pResident Obama's special health policy advisor Ezekiel Emanuel wrote that if healthcare has to be rationed, he prefers the "complete lives system," which "discriminates against older people."

Dr. Devon Herrick, a senior fellow at the National Center for Policy Analysis, says Emanuel believes young adults should be given preferential care over seniors because they have more years of their life ahead of them."

Posted by: JakeD | August 13, 2009 5:59 PM | Report abuse

Lines 4-12 of that bill define what an "Advanced Care Planning Consultation" is. It does not require one to be performed every five years. It says that it doesn't count as one if it has been less than five years.

Posted by: mikeinmidland | August 13, 2009 5:58 PM | Report abuse

'Someone wake me when (if) a live hand grenade gets tossed at pResident Obama:'

So you can celebrate? You know, you are treading perilously close to the edge, old man.

Folks, I'm seriously thinking of alerting the FBI to this guy-- you can't be too careful these days, with the nuts on a rampage. It's rabies season.

Did he ever mention where he lived, anyone? That info could be useful to the Bureau.

Posted by: drindl | August 13, 2009 5:55 PM | Report abuse

Gatsby10 on the prior thread claimed that provision (Section 1233 for end-of-life "counseling") has been removed from the bill -- has anyone else seen or heard that, because it's not on the news -- how did that even happen if Congress is in recess?

Posted by: JakeD | August 13, 2009 5:52 PM | Report abuse

H.R. 3200, Sec. 1233 (Pg. 425, Lines 4-12) specifically requires that end-of-life counseling sessions must be conducted every five years for patients over the age of 65 (and more often, depending on deteriorating health). While DNR orders are not "mandated" the AMA Journal has already acknowledged that patients subjected to such "counseling" are more likely to sign such an order.

Posted by: JakeD | August 13, 2009 5:50 PM | Report abuse

"Wednesday, Feb. 7, 2001, a 47-year old Evansville, Indiana man, identified as Robert Pickett, while waving a loaded handgun near a White House gate was shot in the knee by a Secret Service Agent."

yes, proving that rightwingers have gone off the f*cking deep end.
Too bad it was the knee.

Posted by: drindl | August 13, 2009 5:49 PM | Report abuse

"Newt Addresses AEI: Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich (R-Ga.), who is openly considering a run for president in 2012, will participate in a "four-part course on the principles necessary to fundamentally change how to think about and implement government policies and budgets," today at the American Enterprise Institute. The course promises an "extensive reading list" (woo hoo!) and a detailed discussion of the ways in which the current economic troubles gripping the country should be addressed."

==

Wow, let me guess .. tax cuts for the wealthy?

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 13, 2009 5:42 PM | Report abuse

Kelly14:

I could keep posting actual death threats against GWB, not just over the telephone or holding up a sign, if you want me to.

Posted by: JakeD | August 13, 2009 5:37 PM | Report abuse

The Tea Baggers and town Hallers wouldn't, because they vaguely suspect that we all know who was responsible for those economic results and haven't yet concocted a rational for willing suspension of disbelief required for fiction to work.

==

The howlers are convinced that it was Chris Dodd and Barney Frank who're responsible for the economic collapse.

Don't forget, these are the "Reagan won the Cold War" and "Bush kept us safe" crowd. Logic doesn't work with them.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 13, 2009 5:29 PM | Report abuse

TB is for TeaBaggers...Is TH for TownHollerer or TinHatter? Same thing I guess.

Posted by: mikeinmidland | August 13, 2009 5:27 PM | Report abuse

I read that a video of the nutbar screaming about God to Specter has gotten a lot of online play. Is it on television news?

Some yahoo screaming theological threats at aged cancer survivor Specter can't possibly play well.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 13, 2009 5:27 PM | Report abuse

chrisfox8:

As for the "ignore" thing, nobody is interested in reading that childish crap, not even once, much less a dozen times per thread. Jasper can post to whomever he pleases, and if you don't like it you can go jump in a lake.

Posted by: JakeD | August 13, 2009 5:20 PM | Report abuse

"The public's outrage at town halls isn't solely limited to health care reform!
During the past year, people have lost....jobs, homes, health insurance, 401Ks, kids' college funds, etc. - WHILE our government gave BILLIONS of taxpayers' monies to the very institutions that created the mess! And then there's all those ZILLION dollar bonuses to employees - rewarded for covering up the financial crisis! People are VERY ANGRY! - and would be protesting even if health care reform were not on the agenda.
Posted by: angie12106"

The Tea Baggers and town Hallers wouldn't, because they vaguely suspect that we all know who was responsible for those economic results and haven't yet concocted a rational for willing suspension of disbelief required for fiction to work.

It isn't that there aren't a lot of people out there who are unhappy about what is happening, it is that the Rabid Right's [pretending to speak for every one who isn't happy doesn't stand the light of day. At least as many of the people who are mad at Obama for his hands off approach to health care, or economic recovery policy, are mad because he hasn't gone nearly far enough as are mad because he has gone there at all. There are as many leftists mad because he seems to unreasonably appease the party of the middle finger as there are 20%ers who seem to have that finger permanently splinted in position. When pollsters start asking their questions with a range of reason for opposition, instead of asking with him or agin' him questions, the TB and TH fraternity will be exposed for what it is, a fringe of lunatics escaped from the safe confines of the local hospital.

Posted by: ceflynline | August 13, 2009 5:20 PM | Report abuse

Hopefully, whatever criminal defense attorneys get assigned to any federal cases charging a violation of 18 USC Sec. 871, yesterday or today, remember to challenge the applicability of this statute to Obama.

Posted by: JakeD | August 13, 2009 5:18 PM | Report abuse

Creating a climate of physical intimidation is terrorism.

The GOP is creating a climate of physical intimidation.

Completion of the syllogism is left as and exercise for the reader.

And these aren't isolating nutcases lobbing dead grenades in Latvia, these are members of the Republican base, egged on by elected Republican officials.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 13, 2009 5:17 PM | Report abuse

Interesting factoid: Tbilisi, Georgia, is not in the United States.

Posted by: mikeinmidland | August 13, 2009 5:17 PM | Report abuse

"As I have been saying for weeks now. Finally, what's left of responsible republicans are starting to get scared. They should. They have created a monster."
____
Drindl, "responsible republicans." Isn't that an oxymoron nowadays?

My US Congressman, a Democrat (of course), received two separate death threats. He's been a prosecuting attorney and decided to circulate a survey regarding health care reform instead of hosting town hall meetings. His staff and evidently family were threatened too. Scared is the word.

Specter is down but hardly out, polling notwithstanding. It's a long time before the next elections.

Posted by: Kelly14 | August 13, 2009 5:15 PM | Report abuse

Wednesday, Feb. 7, 2001, a 47-year old Evansville, Indiana man, identified as Robert Pickett, while waving a loaded handgun near a White House gate was shot in the knee by a Secret Service Agent.

Posted by: JakeD | August 13, 2009 5:14 PM | Report abuse

@jasper: it need not. Ignore, ignore, ignore.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 13, 2009 5:14 PM | Report abuse

Uh, oh...........he's back!

The collective intelligence of the blog just dropped considerably with the inclusion of jakey's negative value.

Posted by: jasperanselm | August 13, 2009 5:13 PM | Report abuse

Interesting aside: does that debate perhaps have its origins with the same exact whackos who gave us the Terry Schivo controversy. Perhaps someone in the media needs to pick up on that angle b/c I am sure if you compare the language with Palin's death panels, that it will sound earliy similar to the language we heard during that Fla. controversy which didn't work out all that well for the Rs.

==

That was a *truly* nutty time.

One the stormfront site (a racist GOP forum) they were getting themselves all amped up to storm the hospital and "liberate" the woman with the liquified brain. Wonder what they would have done with her if they'd pulled it off ..


"she ain't sayin' much"

It was really comical. This death panel thing isn't. These guys are truly nuts.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 13, 2009 5:09 PM | Report abuse

Someone wake me when (if) a live hand grenade gets tossed at pResident Obama:

http://www.globalsecurity.org/org/news/2005/050519-bush-grenade.htm

Posted by: JakeD | August 13, 2009 5:09 PM | Report abuse

Good on Arlen for standing up to the hooligans from his former party. I hope he's sincere and not opportunistic here, but the right thing is the right thing.

The guns are starting to show up. Matter of time till one of them goes off, as guns will do. Then it isn't just abortion doctors, then it's the GOP as a terrorist organization, and this close after 9/11 that is NOT going to play well in Poughkeepsie.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 13, 2009 5:04 PM | Report abuse

" but the tenor of the primary will become less about who is the best Democrat and more about who is the future for Pennsylvania Democrats. If Spector still looks like an old, opportunistic turncoat to Democratic primary voters next year, Sestak will take him out."

Except that what Specter really looks like is a centrist who is trying to stay effective, and having written off any possibility of moving the Republicans centerward, he has gone with the party that has come to where he has always been.

Yes, he is a tough old bird with a strong sense of when he is correct in his position, and an understanding of when he can compromise to get things done.

He may in fact be too old, and Sestack may carry his state on that narrow plank, but when Arlen gets the nod, Toomey gets the boot, because he can't place himself between Arlen and his base, which is the center, and no one on the left is likely to vote Toomey regardless.

Arlen hasn't got his next term yet, but Toomey is no barrier to his progress in that direction.

Posted by: ceflynline | August 13, 2009 5:04 PM | Report abuse

"end of life counseling for medicare enrollees while they are still healthy, which is a good thing. It is not "

we now know was written into the legislation by Georgian Republican Isakson who now disavows doing so.

Interesting aside: does that debate perhaps have its origins with the same exact whackos who gave us the Terry Schivo controversy. Perhaps someone in the media needs to pick up on that angle b/c I am sure if you compare the language with Palin's death panels, that it will sound earliy similar to the language we heard during that Fla. controversy which didn't work out all that well for the Rs.

Terry Schivo redeux.

Posted by: leichtman | August 13, 2009 5:02 PM | Report abuse

Sorry, "fine" = "good here".

Posted by: JakeD | August 13, 2009 5:01 PM | Report abuse

jasperanselm:

If you're "fine" then why did you just post to me on that thread?

http://voices.washingtonpost.com/44/2009/08/13/health_care_the_view_from_both.html

Posted by: JakeD | August 13, 2009 4:59 PM | Report abuse

It's definitely quieter and far more informative without jakey and zoukie but less entertaining in some respects.

==

I'll take it.

That guy is waaaaaay too repetitive for my tastes. I'm enjoying this a lot more than usual today.

Also the company is having its annual meeting and since I'm a contractor I don't have to go. The music is up and look ma no headphones.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 13, 2009 4:49 PM | Report abuse

Thanks for the info mike but I'm good here.

Posted by: jasperanselm | August 13, 2009 4:46 PM | Report abuse

Can we get off the 80-year-old straw man? 95% of people over 65 are on Medicare. There is nothing in the health care reform proposals that would change the decision-making process for managing the care of Medicare patients.

You can call it rationing or death panels or whatever scary word you want, but that's the way it already is, no change with this bill.

Posted by: mikeinmidland | August 13, 2009 4:46 PM | Report abuse

It doesn't seem to click with the Party of the right that they can't increase their numbers by deliberately driving anyone in the Party with sense or manners out into the cold.

==

... or anyone with an education.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 13, 2009 4:45 PM | Report abuse

"Intensity of voters is extremely important in politics, at the end of they day, the only thing that counts is who shows up to vote. You can count on the people at the town hall meetings to show up to vote in 2010. Not so sure about Obama voters. Posted by: vbhoomes"

Why would you doubt that Obama's voters won't show up?

The Tea Baggers, Town Hallers and their ilk are first generation astroturf, the really wretched stuff judge Hofheinz had to use because nothing real would grow under his roof, and this bunch is every bit as artificial, not because they aren't motiovated, but because they are just a bunch of 20%ers throwing tantrums to prevent the majority from getting what the majority wants.

They try to claim to be the center, but the center is stayong out of the way, and will probably continue to stay out of the way until it comes time to vote, but they will certainly vote, and Barack, who does bring out the never voted before bloc has the tools and the talent to take his case to those disaffecteds, and now he has more ammunition to convince them that they CANNOT stay homem and they CANNOT reward this puerile behavior by voting republican. Unless the Republican Leadership gets wise very soon, there will be another party running second in general elections come November next, and it will be the center right coalition that the Goldwaterites and Reaganites held in such disdain.

It doesn't seem to click with the Party of the right that they can't increase their numbers by deliberately driving anyone in the Party with sense or manners out into the cold.

But they seem hell bent on driving them out just the same.

Posted by: ceflynline | August 13, 2009 4:42 PM | Report abuse

If you miss him, jasper, he's on 44.

Posted by: mikeinmidland | August 13, 2009 4:40 PM | Report abuse

leichtman writes
"if that voting pattern you site is truly accurate then we will continue to have a real problem turning things around here in Texas; perhaps mark can set us straight with some statistics."


Watch for the occasional posts by bobbywc. As I recall, he's from the lower rio grande valley & says that while the local latino / hispanic population doesn't support the GOP, they're also ticked at the Dems, apparently for aggregious behavior by local pols - so they just don't vote. Perhaps if MiA sees this, he will expand/expound.

Posted by: bsimon1 | August 13, 2009 4:36 PM | Report abuse

reason writes
"There has always been, and always will be, for containment of cost a death panel or preexisting clause or some type of deal like that to protect costs."

While that aspect of the actuaries' work could be reasonably described as a 'death panel', that is not what Palin, et al, are talking about when they use that phrase. As far as I understand, the 'death panel' criticisms are targetted at a provision in one of the proposed bills that would pay for end of life counseling for medicare enrollees while they are still healthy, which is a good thing. It is not state euthanasia, as the 'death panel' crowd claims.

Posted by: bsimon1 | August 13, 2009 4:32 PM | Report abuse

It's definitely quieter and far more informative without jakey and zoukie but less entertaining in some respects.

Posted by: jasperanselm | August 13, 2009 4:29 PM | Report abuse

fairlingtonblade:
if that voting pattern you site is truly accurate then we will continue to have a real problem turning things around here in Texas; perhaps mark can set us straight with some statistics.

Posted by: leichtman | August 13, 2009 4:29 PM | Report abuse

margaret, I have teenagers with acne, too. I don't take them to dermatologists. A specialist is much more likely to give you the high-cost option than your pediatrician.

cf8: please just ignore the tinfoil.

Posted by: mikeinmidland | August 13, 2009 4:21 PM | Report abuse

"How much better conversation is here, and how notably more civil, when the "in a civil manner" troll is away."


Its easier to ignore the uncivil posts when they aren't directed at you. In my opinion some of the anti-GOP rhetoric is still uncivil and should stop.


.

Posted by: bsimon1 | August 13, 2009 4:18 PM | Report abuse

Spector would lose to Toomey 48%-37% based on today's poll.

Toomey would crush Sestak in the same poll.

Pennsylvania resident are overwhelmingly against Obama's health care reform proposal.

This is from today's polls.

Posted by: Cornell1984 | August 13, 2009 4:17 PM | Report abuse

My apologies, reason. Seriously. But calling it a death panel is no way to have a serious conversation. The point is who would you rather have making those decisions -- a public servant, possibly one who is even knowledgeable - say, a doctor, or a for-profit global corporation whose execs may not even live in this country?

Posted by: drindl | August 13, 2009 4:16 PM | Report abuse

margaret, I've spent a lot of time in medical offices over the last ten years, and now I've come to expect the ubiquitous girl in very high heels and short skirt with her suticase full of drug samples to show up every time I visit one.

Yes, they do get paid. Not always directly, but in trips and meals and gifts, etc.

My own [female] intern despises the process and won't take part, which is one of the reasons i love her.

Posted by: drindl | August 13, 2009 4:12 PM | Report abuse

U.S. GOVERNMENT PROGRAM TORTURES UNJUSTLY TARGETED CITIZENS WITH MICROWAVE, LASER RADIATION WEAPONRY, SAYS MAINSTREAM JOURNALIST

==

What would it take to make you stop this crap?

Nobody wants to read it, nobody thinks it's anything but tinfoil hat paranoia, and no I'm not in the pay of some secret organization trying to suppress "the truth"

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 13, 2009 4:12 PM | Report abuse

@margaretmeyers: you could have saved the doctor visit, just use topical triple-antibiotic ointment available in the skin care section in any grocery store. Not only does it work better, it doesn't kill intestinal flora and have all those side effects. Zits drain within 24 hours of first application.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 13, 2009 4:09 PM | Report abuse

U.S. GOVERNMENT PROGRAM TORTURES UNJUSTLY TARGETED CITIZENS WITH MICROWAVE, LASER RADIATION WEAPONRY, SAYS MAINSTREAM JOURNALIST

http://groups.poynter.org/members/blog_view.asp?id=190108

Posted by: scrivener50 | August 13, 2009 4:09 PM | Report abuse

Of course, it's the doc's responsibility to keep up with the new stuff, whether it works better, what is best and most coest effective for the patient, etc. Unfortunately, it doesn't always work like that.

Medicine is an honorable profession, but it seems that so many of them go into it for the wrong reasons.

Posted by: DDAWD | August 13, 2009 4:08 PM | Report abuse

mikeinmidland! I have a 15 year old with acne. So after we did the usual drill of "wash more and try not to touch your face" we went to the dermatologist who perscribed tetracycline. Well, teenagers have been taking that for 45 years -- I figured it would be $15 for a generic. Hah! Why would the dermatologist perscribe a generic when she could write a scrip for a newly formulated tetracyline? $93 copay -- and my insurance company was billed another $300 and something.

Now, I love that 15 year old, but I still won't have my insurance company paying $4,000 a year for her to have clear skin. I told the dermatologist there had to be something cheaper ... and there was. I'm sure she got something for writing that first scrip.

Posted by: margaretmeyers | August 13, 2009 4:06 PM | Report abuse

If a 80 year old man has massive heart failure and really needs a hip replacement due to great pain. An insurance company may look at his life expectancy and say no go on the hip replacement. That definately causes that person more pain in the last days of his life.

==

That's because his chances of surviving the surgery are poor more than because it's "not worth it."

The decision is to let him live a few more weeks rather than stand an excellent chance of killing him on the operating table.

If you see this as "death panels" then you're expressing paranoia, which is kind of screwy since you end up supporting the insurance companies that are much more likely to favor minimizing costs than a government option is.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 13, 2009 4:02 PM | Report abuse

Drindl, I am not a paranoid nutcase. There are already death panel's under insurance companies and there will continue to be under a public option. I'll explain what I mean. If a 80 year old man has massive heart failure and really needs a hip replacement due to great pain. An insurance company may look at his life expectancy and say no go on the hip replacement. That definately causes that person more pain in the last days of his life. However, it does save money. If a 85 year old man has congestive heart failure and is diagnosed with cancer, should he be in line for treatment as easily as a 40 year old in better shape with cancer? To me, if were truly going to contain healthcare costs, sorry, but these situtations will always be true. Before procedures are done on people, their insurance is notified and must approve it. Before choosing a doctor, patients have to have in-network subscribers. There has always been, and always will be, for containment of cost a death panel or preexisting clause or some type of deal like that to protect costs. Do you deny that insurance companies do this? I know, I work for one! I don't like it, but I understand it. Costs are just too high. This is a way to rank those that actually have good chances of survival to get treatment vs. just comfort for those who don't have much of a shot. It will make a dandy way of population control. It would also help social security & medicare. I know what I'm saying isn't popular, but it's the damn truth! The other issues I raised are very real as well. Instead of answering those issues, you just bashed me as nutjob. Which, is typical of politics. It's the same, old, tired partisan politics that Obama criticized in his campaign.

Posted by: reason5 | August 13, 2009 3:57 PM | Report abuse

indeed.

Posted by: drindl | August 13, 2009 3:56 PM | Report abuse

How much better conversation is here, and how notably more civil, when the "in a civil manner" troll is away.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 13, 2009 3:53 PM | Report abuse

There was one important point buried under the prejudice in Greg3's comment. Latinos represent an increasing fraction of the U.S. population, but vote at relatively low rates. A recent demographic study published in the LA Times bore this out.

==

But that can change really fast. There's been a sea change in Latinos in the media, with numerous cable channels in Spanish (yeah I know not all Latinos hablan Español but let's go with it for now) and a little get out el votar urging could change everything.

Traditionally young people don't vote either, and boy did that change in '08.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 13, 2009 3:51 PM | Report abuse

The pharma industry has so much power because it's so HUGELY profitable. They can pretty much buy anyone they want.

Posted by: drindl | August 13, 2009 3:43 PM | Report abuse

Traditionally, young people vote at relatively low rates, too. That doesn't mean they can't be motivated to vote, especially if they're being disparaged by one party.

Posted by: mikeinmidland | August 13, 2009 3:42 PM | Report abuse

It's not drudge, because it's not a deluge of morons, just one.

not koz either, just a random goober.

Posted by: drindl | August 13, 2009 3:40 PM | Report abuse

"Am I the only one here who thinks that advertising prescription drugs is really really creepy?"

'Creepy' isn't the word I'd choose, but I do think its wrong. More curious is that you can't advertise over-the-counter (though age-restricted) products like booze or cigarettes, but prescription drugs are A-OK.

Posted by: bsimon1 | August 13, 2009 3:38 PM | Report abuse

There was one important point buried under the prejudice in Greg3's comment. Latinos represent an increasing fraction of the U.S. population, but vote at relatively low rates. A recent demographic study published in the LA Times bore this out.

BB

Posted by: FairlingtonBlade | August 13, 2009 3:34 PM | Report abuse

Obama uses diplomacy and begging forgiveness with North Korea and Iran, why not with Americans? He should apologize to every US citizen for leaving health care up to Nancy and Harry.

==

Is Drudge linking here again?

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 13, 2009 3:28 PM | Report abuse

Apparently KoZ went to Cornell.

Posted by: mikeinmidland | August 13, 2009 3:28 PM | Report abuse

That's what millions of folks do. Just blindly demand some drug because they saw it on TV, grossly distorting drug costs.

==

That is wrong on so many levels.

I asked for Clonazepam last year because I'd taken it occasionally for better sleep .. gradually started taking it regularly, and then one day while I was in Việt Nam last February I skipped one .. if I hadn't brought enough to last until I returned, I would have been immobilized for at least two weeks by the withdrawal. I'll never self-prescribe again.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 13, 2009 3:27 PM | Report abuse

Obama uses diplomacy and begging forgiveness with North Korea and Iran, why not with Americans? He should apologize to every US citizen for leaving health care up to Nancy and Harry.

Posted by: Cornell1984 | August 13, 2009 3:25 PM | Report abuse

"You only pay extra for the brand."

You pay for their advertising, for 'creating the brand.' I know, I'm in the business. I don't do pharma out of principle.

"What exactly are we supposed to do, go to our doctors and demand that we be prescribed something we've seen on TV?"

That's what millions of folks do. Just blindly demand some drug because they saw it on TV, grossly distorting drug costs.

Posted by: drindl | August 13, 2009 3:14 PM | Report abuse

That's exactly what the ads do. "Ask your doctor if Caduet is right for you!"

If they're smoking, you're watching cable, not broadcast TV.

Posted by: mikeinmidland | August 13, 2009 3:11 PM | Report abuse

Am I the only one here who thinks that advertising prescription drugs is really really creepy?

What exactly are we supposed to do, go to our doctors and demand that we be prescribed something we've seen on TV?

I didn't see a TV for like 20 years, and then I saw it for a while over my partner's shoulder when against my wishes we had one in the bedroom for a while. First thing I noticed is people smoking in sitcoms again, pulling awkwardly on cigarettes .. ugh. Filthy habit. The second thing I noticed was ads for drugs that nobody has the option of just going out and buying. WTF?

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 13, 2009 3:07 PM | Report abuse


Doctors don't like Medicare, either. Because the gummint negotiates the price on a high volume of patients. Just because a doc doesn't like it, doesn't mean it's bad for health care.

The cost-saving high quality examples Obama likes (Cleveland Clinic, etc) pay the doctors a competitive salary, rather than fee-for-procedure. Somehow, the Hippocratic Oath notwithstanding, the number of procedures goes down and the quality of care goes up.

Posted by: mikeinmidland | August 13, 2009 3:05 PM | Report abuse

A auto-dial survey conducted by Populus Research for the GOP blog nowhampshire.com shows former Gov. Mitt Romney (Mass.) is the strong frontrunner in the 2012 primary in the Granite State. Romney, who placed second to Sen. John McCain in New Hampshire in 2008, led the field with 50 percent ...

==

Ah, grand.

Let Mittens be the nominee. And while he's on the campaign trail centering his tie and talking about "the bottom line" before selected audiences, the Democrats will have no trouble finding thousands of laid-off blue- and white-collar workers willing to go on camera and testify about how Mitt's acquire-and-fire tactics at Bain cost them their jobs.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 13, 2009 3:02 PM | Report abuse

In fact, as a government employee I already DO have govenrment analysts writing the standards for my insurance. They also run the bidding process that gets me an excellent price on my coverage. And my coverage is provided by the same insurers and local doctors that everyone else uses -- I just pay less because the government is looking after my interests.

==

Meanwhile, at the town hall meetings:

"TYranny! TYranny! TYranny!"

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 13, 2009 2:59 PM | Report abuse

In terms of health care costs, I'm talking about prescription drugs. Caduet, for example has no advantage over the two separate drugs, but if you get your doc to prescribe it, there's no generic. $ka-ching!$

The other common trick is to wait until the generics come and then introduce the CR or "controlled release" version. Truly marginally better for some people in reducing side-effects. But the original or the generic is just as effective.

So research goes into time-release or combo drugs or maybe the metabolite of the original, rather than new discoveries.

Hey, there's an idea! Mandate that a drug company can only spend as much on advertising as they do on research!

Posted by: mikeinmidland | August 13, 2009 2:58 PM | Report abuse

My sister-in-law (married to my-brother-the-doctor) says "but the GOVERNMENT will be writing your insurance policy." I'd rather have a government analyst writing minimum standards for insurance policies than the bean-counter for a company that profits when I am made to pay for care instead of them.
In fact, as a government employee I already DO have govenrment analysts writing the standards for my insurance. They also run the bidding process that gets me an excellent price on my coverage. And my coverage is provided by the same insurers and local doctors that everyone else uses -- I just pay less because the government is looking after my interests.

Posted by: margaretmeyers | August 13, 2009 2:55 PM | Report abuse

"If you re-instate the old restrictions on drug advertising, patient demand for high-priced, marginally effective drugs will decrease."

Well, they aren't necessarily marginally effective. When you hear in the ads that no drug is more effective than their drug, it's technically true. The thing is, there are plenty of drugs that are as effective. Just not more.

When you go to buy medicine, like cough medicine or something, just look on the side to see the active ingredients. It will always tell you what's in it and they will usually tell you what each ingredient does. Then you can scour the generics and find the ones with the ingredients for whatever symptoms you want to treat and save yourself a lot of money. They are all the same. Even in terms of the amounts of medicine. You only pay extra for the brand.

Posted by: DDAWD | August 13, 2009 2:48 PM | Report abuse

How will that be determined? How will form the committee? Can you imagine who Obama & Pelosi would have put on his committee?

==

The sky is falling, Chicken Little, the sky is falling. Hide under the bed.

Hint, junior, and listen carefully: anytime your argument rests on "who gets to decide," it's time to leave the debate. There are no exceptions.

And I'll take the "nuttiest" Berkeley "left wing" stereotype you limpies can come up with over any corporate shill driven by profit maximization and "shareholder value."

We're talking about peoples' lives here and you're worried about some god damn corporation. If you managed your own health as well as you manage your political self-interest you'd be gulping down arsenic and screaming how great it tasted.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 13, 2009 2:41 PM | Report abuse

Bamboozler.

Posted by: Dermitt | August 13, 2009 2:36 PM | Report abuse

Drug companies spend a lot more on advertising than on research. And he research is a tax deduction!

If you re-instate the old restrictions on drug advertising, patient demand for high-priced, marginally effective drugs will decrease. The drug companies will maintain profits by reducing advertising (yay) and re-focusing on true breakthroughs rather than marketable reformulations.

I know none of this is in the bill(s) but it would help.

Posted by: mikeinmidland | August 13, 2009 2:35 PM | Report abuse

But I fear that a gov't. death panel will be far worse than that.

==

There is no such thing planned, but I think you knew that.

Why don't you guys take a break from lying for a day? Just for sh|ts and giggles.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 13, 2009 2:35 PM | Report abuse

Well you have to figure anyone stupid enough to be a teabagger would be stupid enough to get themselves arrested by the Secret Service. God, these people are idiotic. I just hope more of them get perp-walked.

This is what the Republican leadership want their party to stand for? This is now the image that will come to mind when I think 'Republican.' They incited these people, they will reap the whirlwind.

"A man who held a sign reading 'Death To Obama, Death To Michelle And Her Two Stupid Kids' at a town hall in Maryland yesterday has been detained by the Secret Service, according to the AP.

The Hill first reported on the sign yesterday afternoon. The man in question was attending a town hall event held by Sen. Benjamin Cardin (D-MD) at Hagerstown Community College.

Washington County Sheriff's Captain Peter Lazich said the as-yet-unidentified, 51-year-old man was detained by deputies near the entrance to the college after receiving multiple calls from people in attendance at the event. According to Lazich, the man was turned over to the Secret Service by the sheriff's office."

Posted by: drindl | August 13, 2009 2:32 PM | Report abuse

" Can you imagine who Obama & Pelosi would have put on his committee?"

The discussion is not furthered by paranoid nutcases. I'd take Pelosi over any CEO any day of the week. Your arguments are weak.

Posted by: drindl | August 13, 2009 2:26 PM | Report abuse

Off the subject of politics and on healthcare as a human issue. There are just so many factors and questions to this issue. I'm glad it wasn't rammed through with a disastrous public gov't. option. There are alot of issues:
1. How will R&D continue to be paid for with decreased rates across the board. I fear that research will suffer, making healthcare quality suffer in the future.
2. With reduced prices, doctors & nurses will take pay cuts. How will we keep our best medical professionals in the business? How will we influence new medical pro's into the business?
3. Insurance companies & hospitals will take a % of loss. How will we get insurance companies & hospitals to stay in business while taking these losses their not used to? If business isn't profitable, they won't be in business for long.
4. Yes, insurance companies does deny care for out-patient facilities and prexisting conditions. But I fear that a gov't. death panel will be far worse than that. A public option can't afford to give all people good care, especially if they are on the way out of this world anyhow. How will that be determined? How will form the committee? Can you imagine who Obama & Pelosi would have put on his committee?

These questions are vital to America continuing to have a top notch healthcare system. I do not have all of the answers to these questions, and nor does this bill as i can tell.

I do think these issues can be weighed and an honest bill can be written. But before it is, these ?'s must be addressed.

Posted by: reason5 | August 13, 2009 2:21 PM | Report abuse


Is Specter's political career over?

http://www.youpolls.com/details.asp?pid=5936

.

Posted by: usadblake | August 13, 2009 2:21 PM | Report abuse

Pennsylvania hates Arlen - for so very many reasons.
Today he's got a town hall meeting in Kittanning Pennsylvania at 3:00pm.

The further west Senator Spector goes the worse it gets.

I read an hour ago that protesters are already getting heated up in front of the building.
State police are present.

I attended a town hall meeting with my Congresswoman on Tuesday - lots of anger there.
If I didn't have to work today I'd be attending the Arlen Spector lovefeast too.

He's going to get dogpiled.

Posted by: grannymiller | August 13, 2009 2:17 PM | Report abuse

U.S. GOVERNMENT PROGRAM TORTURES UNJUSTLY TARGETED CITIZENS WITH MICROWAVE, LASER RADIATION WEAPONRY, SAYS MAINSTREAM JOURNALIST

http://groups.poynter.org/members/blog_view.asp?id=190108

Posted by: scrivener50 | August 13, 2009 2:17 PM | Report abuse

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/gallery/2009/08/13/GA2009081301735.html?hpid=multimedia1&hpv=national

photo of some healthcare screamers. the loudest usually seem to be these aging, harsh-looking bleached-blond women.

Hey, I'm a gal, but these are hard-lookin wimmen.

Posted by: drindl | August 13, 2009 2:13 PM | Report abuse

My own rep, whose meeting i was planning on attending, heard talk of mobs being bussed in and decided to do it by phone. What a shame that these bullies have shut down our ability to go out in public. I wish she would have instead just called the Tac Squad, but that would have made the whiners scream louder. I suppose the best thing is just to let it burn itself out, and leave them with the damage they have done to themselves.

I will participate in the call, of course. i'm curious how those work.

Posted by: drindl | August 13, 2009 2:07 PM | Report abuse

I would hope that anyone in favor of health-care reform would attend meetings with their congressmen and ask intelligent questions. Whether that voter or that congressman was R or D.

Posted by: mikeinmidland | August 13, 2009 2:02 PM | Report abuse

The rowdy health care town hall meetings have succeeded in making a lot of my fellow liberals and union members mad as h*ll. Although I don't expect us to screech like the collection of monkeys composing the tea party idiots, I expect meeting held by Republican's to be disrupted and turned into chaos. The K-street groups that started this have opened a can of worms.

==

I would hope not. Making ourselves indistinguishable from the knucklewalkers doesn't do anyone any good. Let the contrast be not only between liars and truth but also between anarchy and civilization.

The right has nothing to offer. Let's make that as clear as it can be.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 13, 2009 1:53 PM | Report abuse

I think we've gotten as much of a hate-on as we're going to get from screams of "bureaucrat." I'd say that particular screed lost its potency about the time the waves came ashore in New Orleans.

Two things being lost in the screaming from the town howlers and worth repeating

(1) the status quo is not an option. Our health care is terribly expensive and getting more expensive every year.

(2) private insurance isn't working. Overhead costs are too high, and executive salaries are out of control. About 50 million people are not covered at all, and insurance companies are cutting off people who get sick, or who have "pre-existing conditions," the definition of which becomes looser all the time.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 13, 2009 1:35 PM | Report abuse

The rowdy health care town hall meetings have succeeded in making a lot of my fellow liberals and union members mad as h*ll. Although I don't expect us to screech like the collection of monkeys composing the tea party idiots, I expect meeting held by Republican's to be disrupted and turned into chaos. The K-street groups that started this have opened a can of worms.

Posted by: mibrooks27 | August 13, 2009 1:34 PM | Report abuse

Well, it's just so obvious, dawd. You have a system now that REWARDS people for withholding care. Nothing could be worse than that. It's a shame people allow themselves to be so bamboozled.

Posted by: drindl | August 13, 2009 1:31 PM | Report abuse

more rightwingnuttery...

Rep. John Mica (R-FL) told a Florida radio station today that the health care legislation being considered by the House of Representatives will authorize the creation of “death counselors“:

“They create a whole new category,” Mica, a Winter Park Republican, said on WDBO. “There are death counselors. There is authorization for reimbursement for those counselors for Medicare. You have a whole new cottage industry.

Mica joins several other conservatives in promoting the conspiracy theory that health reform legislation is secretly designed to kill old people. "

Posted by: drindl | August 13, 2009 1:29 PM | Report abuse

Brilliant minds think alike, apparently.

Posted by: DDAWD | August 13, 2009 1:29 PM | Report abuse

"I do fear the death panels would be worse in a gov't. ran system than in private insurance"

Why is that? I would think the opposite would be true if you involved a provider that wasn't motivated by profit.

Posted by: DDAWD | August 13, 2009 1:28 PM | Report abuse

"I do fear the death panels would be worse in a gov't. ran system than in private insurance, but this does already go on somewhat."

Not somewhat, that's the way the whole system works.

And why would a government-run system that exists for the public good be more heartless than a for-profit system? Doesn't make sense even.

No one has a harder heart than a CEO.

Posted by: drindl | August 13, 2009 1:24 PM | Report abuse

Murkowski piles on...

The Fix has noted that the former Gov of AK is losing approval. Senator Lisa Murkowski (R), who still has a job representing Alaskans, says that the former Governor not only doesn't have her facts straight, but is doing damage to their party:

http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5iSLR1lJ_LCoPGUAvHE_iLVlGIk_AD9A23K000

"Alaska Sen. Lisa Murkowski said this week that Palin and other critics were not helping the GOP by throwing out false claims.

"Quite honestly, I'm so offended at that terminology, because it absolutely isn't" in the bill, Murkowski said. "There is no reason to gin up fear in the American public by saying things that are not included in the bill." "

Posted by: bsimon1 | August 13, 2009 1:20 PM | Report abuse

Off the subject of Specter and on healthcare. I don't see the public option surviving even if it were passed in congress. Look at the estimated vs. real cots of medicare & medicaid and the spread on reality vs. projections. Pelosi came out suggesting that the savings we would receive as a nation from the public option would balance out the budget. I don't think any notable economist would even think twice that is true. We know that whatever costs are estimated, they would be much more in reality. I work in insurance, a very big part of my business. I deal with my clients (the patients), doctors (to file claims) and the insurance company (my employer). A public option would be awful for quality of care (no money for R&D), quality of healthcare professionals (Doctor's & nurses would take very large pay cuts and leave the business), hospitals (lose money on reduced rates for the public option) and patients (they would suffer the loss of their preferred doctors & nurses to keep them healthy). These are my fears. The "death panel" arguments scare alot of people. However, working in my industry, I know that already goes on somewhat. Insurance companies deny preexisting conditions and patients have networks they can work in. Most out of network visits are only covered so much, then it's on the individual. I do fear the death panels would be worse in a gov't. ran system than in private insurance, but this does already go on somewhat.

That being said, the big question is this: Maintaining America's system of high quality care given by high quality medical professionals, how can we reduce healthcare prices for patients, pay for R&D to continue to advance and get better treatments & cures while keeping the best doctors & nurses in the field? How can we do this and attract the future of healthcare into the profession? There must be a balance. In that balance: patients will have to give up some quality, healthcare pro's will have to take some pay cuts, hospitals and insurance companies will have to take a % of profit loss. Is it worth it? I think it is with the right plan in place. I know many of the questions, but I do not have the answers, however. This is a compelling issue that takes more than "let's act now" to get correct.

Posted by: reason5 | August 13, 2009 1:16 PM | Report abuse

Does anyone have any anecdotal evidence to support this? That the crazies are repelling people from their position? I spend almost all my time in an academic environment, so most people are already pretty against the teabagger position.

==

Well if the GOP is going further into the wilderness you're suuuuuure not gonna read about it here.

Nice to finally read something doubting about Palin, though.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 13, 2009 1:08 PM | Report abuse

SOMEbody read "1984" in 1948.

==

The original intended title of the book was "1948"

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 13, 2009 1:00 PM | Report abuse

"The thing that these wild-eyed protesters don't seem to understand is how the mind links imagery. When we see an angry crowd screaming and waving swastikas and pictures of Hitler, what does our mind associate that with?

If you thought the republican 'brand' was damaged before, it's nothing compared to what the teabaggers have done.

Posted by: drindl"

Does anyone have any anecdotal evidence to support this? That the crazies are repelling people from their position? I spend almost all my time in an academic environment, so most people are already pretty against the teabagger position.

Maybe I'll bring it up next time I go to the casino. Nothing like a good political debate to induce some tilt.

Posted by: DDAWD | August 13, 2009 12:56 PM | Report abuse

David Frum, Republican speechwriter ["axis of evil"]:

"A man bearing a sidearm appears outside President Obama's Aug. 11 town hall meeting in Portsmouth, N.H., under a sign proclaiming, "It is time to water the tree of liberty."

That phrase of course references a famous statement of Thomas Jefferson's, from a 1787 letter: "The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots & tyrants."

Earlier that same day, another man is arrested inside the school building in which the president will speak. Police found a loaded handgun in his parked car.

At an event held by Rep. Gabrielle Giffords in Arizona last week, police were called after one attendee dropped a gun.

Nobody has been hurt so far. We can all hope that nobody will be. But firearms and politics never mix well. They mix especially badly with a third ingredient: the increasingly angry tone of incitement being heard from right-of-center broadcasters.

The Nazi comparisons from Rush Limbaugh; broadcaster Mark Levin asserting that President Obama is "literally at war with the American people"; former vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin claiming that the president was planning "death panels" to extirpate the aged and disabled; the charges that the president is a fascist, a socialist, a Marxist, an illegitimate Kenyan fraud, that he "harbors a deep resentment of America," that he feels a "deep-seated hatred of white people," that his government is preparing concentration camps, that it is operating snitch lines, that it is planning to wipe away American liberties": All this hysterical and provocative talk invites, incites, and prepares a prefabricated justification for violence.

**And indeed some conservative broadcasters are lovingly anticipating just such an outcome.**
..............
The person who drafted that homeland security memo has gained very good reason to be worried. The guns are coming out. The risks are real. "

As I have been saying for weeks now. Finally, what's left of responsible republicans are starting to get scared. They should. They have created a monster.

http://www.theweek.com/bullpen/column/99474/The_reckless_Right_courts_violence

Posted by: drindl | August 13, 2009 12:55 PM | Report abuse

1984 uses doublethink and newspeak.
It's been like ten years since I read 1984, so I might be a little hazy.

Doublethink is the practice to ignore contradictions to a belief system. It's sort of how most people deal with cognitive dissonance, but taken to a mugh higher level in the book.

Newspeak is kind of the dumbing down of language and getting rid of nuance. Think of "us versus them" or "good versus evil" or "right versus wrong" Everything is framed in black or white.

I wouldn't say that someone who uses doublespeak has never read the book. It actually took me a few minutes to remember. Probably because I see doublespeak attributed to 1984 all the time, so it got ingrained in my mind.

Although I'm sure most people who use the term have never read the book.

Posted by: DDAWD | August 13, 2009 12:42 PM | Report abuse

The thing that these wild-eyed protesters don't seem to understand is how the mind links imagery. When we see an angry crowd screaming and waving swastikas and pictures of Hitler, what does our mind associate that with?

If you thought the republican 'brand' was damaged before, it's nothing compared to what the teabaggers have done.

Posted by: drindl | August 13, 2009 12:42 PM | Report abuse

"Our government needs to stop bailing out the private sector and they need to stay out of our health care decisions. "

Posted by: politicsisme1 |


post above is from another R who wishes to end Medicare and VA care and apparently is happy with UNH, Aetna and Bluecross currently denying their healthcare with a profit motive. Incidentally the proposed public component is an OPTION only and currently even Medicare patient's care is usually managed care managed by the same healthcare groups Rs insist on.

Apparently no care for our seniors, veterans, and 47 million uninsurred is superior, in their minds, than a public option. Nice to know they are willing to end Medicare for all seniors. Talking about scaring our seniors.

Posted by: leichtman | August 13, 2009 12:26 PM | Report abuse

I concur with mikeinmidland

greg3 You should get you head out of Rush's pynidial cysted butt.


I'm sure you are just as concerned about the Pole's, Russians and Irish who are here on expired visa's. I live in NYC and this is the reality.

Posted by: MerrillFrank | August 13, 2009 12:23 PM | Report abuse

bsimon pick:

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/08/12/AR2009081202576_pf.html

Broder's piece is relevant to the subject at hand, if the subject is Specter's prospects for political success in next years elections in the face of conservative backlash at his party switch.

Broder posits, reasonably in my opinion, that the more extreme elements of the conservative movement are reflecting poorly on conservatives generally & Republicans specifically. Put a different way, many of us are asking where all the reasonable Republicans have gone. There certainly don't seem to be any among the GOP leadership in Washington.

Posted by: bsimon1 | August 13, 2009 12:21 PM | Report abuse

MORE EVIDENCE THAT U.S. GOVERNMENT WARRANTLESS 'FUSION CENTER' SURVEILLANCE IS BEING USED AS A PRETEXT TO HARASS AND CENSOR THE TELECOMMUNICATIONS OF UNJUSTLY 'TARGETED' AMERICAN CITIZENS AND FAMILIES


Please scroll to the bottom of the comments section of this ACLU "Freedom Blog" thread -- and alert your Congresspeople:

http://blog.aclu.org/2009/01/26/internet-filters-voluntary-ok-not-government-mandate

Posted by: scrivener50 | August 13, 2009 12:13 PM | Report abuse

1789-1947 "Department of War"
1947-1949 "National Military Establishment"
1949-present "Department of Defense"

SOMEbody read "1984" in 1948.

Posted by: mikeinmidland | August 13, 2009 12:10 PM | Report abuse

"The term doublespeak was coined in the early 1950s. It is often incorrectly attributed to George Orwell and his 1949 dystopian novel Nineteen Eighty-Four. The term does not appear in that novel, although Orwell did coin newspeak, oldspeak, and doublethink, and his novel made fashionable composite nouns with speak as the second element, which were previously unknown in English. Doublespeak may be considered, in Orwell's lexicography, as the vocabulary of Newspeak, words "deliberately constructed for political purposes: words, that is to say, which not only had in every case a political implication, but were intended to impose a desirable mental attitude upon the person using them."

In other words, what the Republican party does best.

Posted by: drindl | August 13, 2009 12:00 PM | Report abuse

politicalslime -- you're not a democrat and never were.

Posted by: drindl | August 13, 2009 11:56 AM | Report abuse

Not one mention of the fact that Toomey is leading Specter in the polls 48% to 36%. As for Hispanic opinion, who cares. Mostly they don't vote anyway and there is still time to shut the immigration floodgates. Hispanics aren't here because Americans want them; they are here mostly illegally. Once the meaning of the 14th amendment is clarified, we can begin deporting about 20-30 million of them.

==

Not a word of truth in this post.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 13, 2009 11:52 AM | Report abuse

Chris - a stylistic point if I may.

I know you know the entire cast of characters of the political universe - probably the same way I know the entire cast of characters for the Lost Universe - but not everyone of your readers might have that intimate knowledge.

Take for example todays "Miller For Conway" section. It is 8 lines down into the text that the word Kentucky is mentioned. I am a bit proud that when I came across the name Mongiardo that I thought to myself isn't that Kentucky and that probably has to due with the uniqueness of the name instead of my intimate knowledge of Kentucky politics. I'm not asking you to dumb your writing down but a state ID at the start of a section or within the first line would be very helpful.

Thanks!

Posted by: dre7861 | August 13, 2009 11:50 AM | Report abuse

Perhaps you've read 1984 and are familiar with the term "doublespeak"?

==

There is no such term in "1984"

You haven't read it, or if you have you have a mind like a sieve.

Republican?

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 13, 2009 11:49 AM | Report abuse

A lot of very smart people believe this will be a double dip recession.

==

Please try not to sound *too* hopeful for calamity.

Your ugly nasty party has no way back to power other than national catastrophe, there is no chance that conservatives will come up with any new ideas, so it's no wonder that you guys alternatate between yearning for economic collapse and another "terrorist attack," and you can make of the sneer-quote what you will.

I remember when people who called themselves patriots hoped for good things to happen to America.

Posted by: chrisfox8 | August 13, 2009 11:43 AM | Report abuse

PLEASE DO THIS BECAUSE IT CAN BE PRODUCTIVE AND MEASURABLE. I'm going to send my elected officials and our president, who I didn't vote for, a message. I'm going to change my voter's registration from the democratic party to the republican party. Politicians always look at the polls and percentages. Lets start by having a mass exodus from the democratic party on paper. Then we can hit them at the polls. The president and members of Congress are taking over to many parts of our lives. Our government needs to stop bailing out the private sector and they need to stay out of our health care decisions. If enough people change parties it will send a very strong message to all politicians. They need to be reminded that they work for US.

Posted by: politicsisme1 | August 13, 2009 11:42 AM | Report abuse

I think this town hall exchange between Specter & this guy actually helps Specter in the Democratic primary against Sestek. Specter stood his ground and defended the Obama plan in a tough spot. Considering Specter has a very tough Democratic primary, this townhall deal helps him. The General election is a long, long way away. Right now, you can bet Specter is focused on his primary fight against Sestek. This primary is one that Specter is winning big right now. The race will tighten, but Specter has the backing of the DC crowd (Obama & Reid) and the Pa. political machine(Rendell & Casey). Sestek faces a very tough uphill battle, and his chances pend now on which way labor leans: Specter (with Obama & Rendell) or independently with Sestek. With labor, Sestek has a real race in which he is still the underdog. If labor gives in to Obama and leans Specter, Specter wins it big. I think Sestek will be formitable, but Specter is in a good spot here.

Posted by: reason5 | August 13, 2009 11:42 AM | Report abuse

I live in a conservative part of my state, a county that voted 75% for the Republican in an open race for sheriff. McCain took the county, too, but only 51-48.

I heard some grumbling when the stock market fell to 6500 in March. Not so much now. Reports of the administration's death have been greatly exaggerated.

Posted by: mikeinmidland | August 13, 2009 11:42 AM | Report abuse

"As for Hispanic opinion, who cares. Mostly they don't vote anyway and there is still time to shut the immigration floodgates."

LOL. what rock do these slugs crawl out from under? Go for it, Gomer. Insult Latinos and watch how many seats you lose next election. It's interesting watch the R party immolating itself.

Posted by: drindl | August 13, 2009 11:38 AM | Report abuse

"Let's refocus on a single payer system since the Republicans have shown no interest in compromise.

Posted by: bamccampbell"

Honestly, the Republicans are the least of Obama's problems. The Blue Dogs are intent on watering this thing down. Baucus is probably going to get rid of the public option, and single payer is a non-starter.

Honestly I think the Blue Dogs are hanging themselves. They have the most to gain from good reform and if they can't deliver that, then their constituents aren't going to see a reason to keep them over the next Republican Bible thumper. You think that McCaskill is going to get more support for stem cell research than health care reform? I don't think so.

All the insurance funded campaign donations in the world aren't going to save their jobs if they don't give their constituents good health care reform. Because, really. If they can't do this, what are they going to hang their hats on? The bailouts?

Posted by: DDAWD | August 13, 2009 11:37 AM | Report abuse

I thought the old bird was at his best. It's clear the Republican Party left Spector, not the other way round. Those protesters aren't about free speech -- they're about suppressing free speech for other people. They're the same folks who showed up at Sarah Palin rallies back in September of last year, calling Obama a communist and exhorting somebody to rid the country of the biracial menace.

In other words, the sort of people only Palin, Rush, Hannity, and Glen Beck could love.

Posted by: Samson151 | August 13, 2009 11:36 AM | Report abuse

Jerzy -- Only people who are saying that are the ones who never voted for him.

Posted by: drindl | August 13, 2009 11:36 AM | Report abuse

Just FYI, greg3,

There are about 44 million LEGAL hispanics in this country. That includes the 4 million residents of Puerto Rico who, like the Puerto Ricans in the 50 states, are US Citizens.

There are less than 10 million illegal aliens in this country, so I'm not sure how you get to the idea that "most of them" (hispanics) are illegal, or that you could deport 20-30 million people.

Posted by: mikeinmidland | August 13, 2009 11:26 AM | Report abuse

I'm surprised that Obama could find a roomful of supporters anywhere in the United States for his "town hall" meeting.

It is heartening that growing numbers of people are now claiming, "I didn't vote for that guy," or more honestly, "I can't believe I voted for that idiot."

Posted by: Jerzy | August 13, 2009 11:13 AM | Report abuse

Not one mention of the fact that Toomey is leading Specter in the polls 48% to 36%. As for Hispanic opinion, who cares. Mostly they don't vote anyway and there is still time to shut the immigration floodgates. Hispanics aren't here because Americans want them; they are here mostly illegally. Once the meaning of the 14th amendment is clarified, we can begin deporting about 20-30 million of them.

Posted by: greg3 | August 13, 2009 11:09 AM | Report abuse

"For REM albumns, I have to be an unthinking, pop-programmed robot and go with Out of Time.

Sorry.

Posted by: Hawaiiexpat"

Not even Automatic? Sheesh!

Posted by: DDAWD | August 13, 2009 11:08 AM | Report abuse

"I always thought REM was whiny for my power blues oriented tastes. Both my oldest two kids [now 39 and 35] liked them.

Is that better, Ddawd?

Hey - are you in LA, the benighted Acadia of the south?

Posted by: mark_in_austin"

Yes to both.

Though it seems like the board has been permanently hijacked into some political discussion. Oh well.

Posted by: DDAWD | August 13, 2009 11:06 AM | Report abuse

Single payer would be great. Unfortunately, it ain't gonna happen. It's really the Blue Dogs that are the swing votes on the public option, and no way are they going for single payer.

Obama should negotiate hard, get what he can, and sign something this year. There are other things that can be done without new legislation. And more incremental reform may yet happen in future years.

Posted by: mikeinmidland | August 13, 2009 11:06 AM | Report abuse

Finally found a poll about Latino support for republicans. Unsurprisingly, it's dropped. This is an angry white male party imploding on itself as demographics drive it further down the tubes.


Republican Party approval rating among Latinos

April 27-30 August 3-6

Favorable 14 3
Unfavorable 73 86
No Opinion 13 11

The first column is the week that Justice Souter retired, which was soon followed by speculation of Sotomayor's nomination (she was the frontrunner). That is the reference week. The second is this week.

Republicans were already lagging badly with Latinos, yet somehow, they managed to lose a net 24 favorability points over the course of three months. And for what? To keep the dying 1950s Pat Buchanan-wing of the party happy? Great call, there."

Posted by: drindl | August 13, 2009 11:02 AM | Report abuse


Any health insurance reform that does not include a Public Option will not be reform. Without a non-profit federal plan with leverage to reduce drug costs and insurance industry profits, the only thing "insured" will be the continuing transfer of American dollars into the health care industry's pockets.

The town hall mobs and Republican Senator Grassley's recent comments supporting the outlandish claim of death panels for seniors prove that there can be no bipartisan solution that will truly be reform. We need to move beyond the "profits at any cost" mentality of the neocons and put the American people first for a change.

Let's refocus on a single payer system since the Republicans have shown no interest in compromise.

Posted by: bamccampbell | August 13, 2009 11:00 AM | Report abuse

specter/murtha are a disgrace to the voters of pa. wake up,do not put these two back in office

Posted by: pofinpa | August 13, 2009 10:57 AM | Report abuse

Death panels are exactly what we need. Most of the nearly $14 T national debt was accumulated over the last half century by borrowing to pay for unaffordable entitlement program. No entitlement program was more poorly conceived and executed than Medicare, which has, in essence bankrupted the nation. Now we are confronting economic relaity. We have no choice but to reduce spending on health care. The good news is, that is easy! Just stop wasting money on futile end-of-life care and demand objective evidence of efficacy before any treatment is paid for at public expense. Its time to stop puring chemo into people on their last day of life; fusing spines; "washing out" knees; stenting unnecessarily; imaging headaches; and doing vertebroplasties. The list of wasteful care just goes on and on... Stop throwing money away on "salesmen with scalpels" and yet another "center of excellence for bariatric surgery." One on every street corner is overdoing it. Its time for the hopelessly ill to go to hospice instead of the hospital.

Posted by: physicianexec | August 13, 2009 10:55 AM | Report abuse

Specter handled himself well, and alot more charitably than the shouter. If there will be a great reckoning someday, the shouters have more to answer for than will Specter.

Posted by: djmolter | August 13, 2009 10:50 AM | Report abuse

Sorry Senator Specter, I spelt your name wrong.

Oh and I clicked the comment button but nothing happened so I clicked it again and now there is a double. Maybe the powers that be can erase one of them. In the meantime I 'll try to show some patience and hope no one whines about it.

Posted by: glenglish | August 13, 2009 10:48 AM | Report abuse

Meanwhile, Sarah Palin is defending her "death panel" claims. More fuel for the Deather mobs, AKA "The GOP Base."

http://news.yahoo.com/s/politico/20090813/pl_politico/26078

Posted by: koolkat_1960 | August 13, 2009 10:44 AM | Report abuse

What Lebanon was about was a group of largely ill-informed people using anger to prevent any legitimate discussion of an issue. It's the typical tactic--shout erroreous nonsense, then cry free speech when someone tries to actually respond with information. The motive is not to inform but to disrupt.

Posted by: caraprado1 | August 13, 2009 10:44 AM | Report abuse

Oh that guy whining because he didn't get a chance to ask ask a question. That ain't news that's garbage. Let's see, Thirty seconds to a minute to ask a well though out question and then one to three minutes to give a well thought out answer as well as maybe another thirty seconds to mionute and a half to address a follow up. And the guy is whining because he didn't get on of the thirty slots. I'd like to play holier than thou and say you do the math but lemme tell you I have and I do it every presentations test I give with 25 students in my class: 30 questions will take at least an hour and a half when conducted in sane and concise cicumstances and usually runs better than two and a half. Anyone taking sides with this guy moaning at Spector better get vaccinated for whine flu.

As for Sarah P. every time she is on the tube I pull the plug on her.

I remember Newt was the guy who was screaming "impeach Clinton" for his affairs and all the while Newt was hosing someone that was not his wife.

Maybe there's a twelve step program for recovering conservatives. If there isn't Spector may try to form one.

Posted by: glenglish | August 13, 2009 10:44 AM | Report abuse

Oh that guy whining because he didn't get a chance to ask ask a question. That ain't news that's garbage. Let's see, Thirty seconds to a minute to ask a well though out question and then one to three minutes to give a well thought out answer as well as maybe another thirty seconds to mionute and a half to address a follow up. And the guy is whining because he didn't get on of the thirty slots. I'd like to play holier than thou and say you do the math but lemme tell you I have and I do it every presentations test I give with 25 students in my class: 30 questions will take at least an hour and a half when conducted in sane and concise cicumstances and usually runs better than two and a half. Anyone taking sides with this guy moaning at Spector better get vaccinated for whine flu.

As for Sarah P. every time she is on the tube I pull the plug on her.

I remember Newt was the guy who was screaming "impeach Clinton" for his affairs and all the while Newt was hosing someone that was not his wife.

Maybe there's a twelve step program for recovering conservatives. If there isn't Spector may try to form one.

Posted by: glenglish | August 13, 2009 10:43 AM | Report abuse

what kind of racist nonsense are you prattling on about?

another white supremacist?

Posted by: drindl | August 13, 2009 10:37 AM | Report abuse

Ombudsman,

I agree with you that Scott was out of line to shout at his constituents. That was not a health-care town hall, but if he wasn't prepared to talk about it, he should not have opened the floor to all questions.

Telling your constituents to call your office, however, is a lot more polite than telling your senator that he will be judged by God.

Posted by: mikeinmidland | August 13, 2009 10:36 AM | Report abuse

"Black Panthers, for godsake? What era do you live in? Huh?"

I thought that era was long past as well. I'm glad we agree that it's outrageous what the justice department has effectively endorsed voter intimidation. I'm sure this will help the democratic process next time there's an election.

You can actually see what happened on YouTube.

Posted by: Ombudsman1 | August 13, 2009 10:33 AM | Report abuse

angie -- larouche is not far left. he is neither right nor left, simply a lunatic. the hitler stuff is all coming from so called conservatives. they are painting swastikas on public buildings. who does that remind you of? who are they acting like?

Posted by: drindl | August 13, 2009 10:28 AM | Report abuse

The other thing about the internets, nutcase, is that is also full of crazy lies and the rantings of lunatics.

Posted by: drindl | August 13, 2009 10:25 AM | Report abuse

Black Panthers, for godsake? What era do you live in? Huh?

Posted by: drindl | August 13, 2009 10:23 AM | Report abuse

You certainly won't see Toomey appearing with the general public anytime soon. His handlers are keeping him in those classic controlled environments that put George Bush in a room full of love. They really have to keep 'his message' as obscure as possible.

Posted by: margaretmeyers | August 13, 2009 10:21 AM | Report abuse

One of the most interesting aspects to this whole debate is that the people who most invoke the Constitution apparently have never read it.

Posted by: drindl | August 13, 2009 10:21 AM | Report abuse

Arlen Spector gained tremendous credibility across the nation for standing up to those cowardly and ignorant ranters at the town hall meeting.

I want to know why we are not getting coverage of town hall meetings about health care reform in the parts of the country where most people live: the large cities of the East Coast, Florida, California, and the Great Lakes regions?

An crucial issue like reforming our corrupt, expensive, and dangerous health care insurance system is too important to leave in the control of a few small-minded violence-prone nutjobs who inhabit the tiny towns of the central plains or western Pennsylvania.

Posted by: dee5 | August 13, 2009 10:21 AM | Report abuse

"Specter is supposed to represent his constituents, ie ALL the citizens of Pennsylvania. "

Good comprehension you're agreeing with me that his first job is to represent his constituents, not the entire country.

What I take his whining to mean is that he wants feedback, as long as it's in support of him.

Perhaps he wants to take a page from David Scott and just insult the people he works for (the people) simply because they're asking him polite questions:

http://hotair.com/archives/2009/08/07/video-democrat-screams-at-constituent-for-asking-tough-question-on-health-care/

Or is the doctor in this case a thug.

As I said, the tough thing about the internet is you have no more excuses. The lies and hypocrisy are there, exposed to see.

And it's ugly what Obama and the democrats are doing.

Posted by: Ombudsman1 | August 13, 2009 10:20 AM | Report abuse

0bama photo-shopped as Hitler.
Courtesy of FAR LEFT Larouche....

http://www.larouchepac.com/files/media/obama.pdf

Wonder if 0bots will bash Larouche Pac?
ha!
No - they'll just continue claiming the Hitler meme is ONLY from Repubs.

Posted by: angie12106 | August 13, 2009 10:19 AM | Report abuse

ERRATA -- AND A WARNING ABOUT APPARENT GOVERNMENT CENSORSHIP

Correction:

In Scrivener's earlier post headlined "Snarlin' Arlen..." the phrase "stand up and fight" was misprinted.

While I'm back here, I must mention that my initial, unexpurgated submission generated a full-screen "held for blog owner" message (once again), despite the fact that WaPo does not "hold" posts unless the software detects foul language.

I believe what happened is a result of censorship of political speech perpetrated under the cover of real-time warrantless surveillance conducted by the U.S. government -- a program that appears to maliciously interfere with the telecommunications of unjustly "targeted" citizens.

The evidence can be found by scrolling to the bottom of the "comments" section of the following ACLU "Freedom Blog" link:

http://blog.aclu.org/2009/01/26/internet-filters-voluntary-ok-not-government-mandate

http://nowpublic.com/world/govt-fusion-center-spying-pretext-harass-and-censor

Posted by: scrivener50 | August 13, 2009 10:18 AM | Report abuse

For REM albumns, I have to be an unthinking, pop-programmed robot and go with Out of Time.

Sorry.

Posted by: Hawaiiexpat | August 13, 2009 10:17 AM | Report abuse

"They're violent, they shove and scream, they talk about killing and bloodshed, they show up with guns and knives "

I assumed at first you were talking about how Obama has decided the Black Panthers intimidating white voters is not such a big deal.

http://www.examiner.com/x-2684-Law-Enforcement-Examiner~y2009m7d30-Black-Panther-voter-intimidation-case-dropped-by-Justice-Department

Funny that this is quietly a non-issue, but people angry at their congressmen are thugs.

Perhaps you've read 1984 and are familiar with the term "doublespeak"?

Posted by: Ombudsman1 | August 13, 2009 10:16 AM | Report abuse

Wrong, Ombudsman. Specter is supposed to represent his constituents, ie ALL the citizens of Pennsylvania. He is also bound by his pledge to uphold the Constitution.

Democrats WANT all the facts to come to light. The shouters at these town halls are the ones trying to obscure facts with fear.

Posted by: mikeinmidland | August 13, 2009 10:14 AM | Report abuse

bsimon1 you are correct just heard the tail end of that story this morning.

My larger point was that the GOP was obviously wrong about their claims a month ago that the D's stimulus being Obama's failure, so if they were so wrong about how their claims that the Administration has mishandled the economy then why should anyone believe their dire predictions regarding healthcare plans? Shouldn't trust Rs predictions about economic stimulus, then don't trust them on their attempts to destroy healthcare reform.

Posted by: leichtman | August 13, 2009 10:12 AM | Report abuse

Did you see the follow up from that stay at home mom on Fox and Msnbc-

Fox- she did not hear the answer
MSNCB- she did not pay attention to the TWO Wars we are currently in - she thinks we were ate war since 1991~~

WOW~~

Australians warned us not to allow Rupert Murdoch to infiltrate our free press standards

England warned us not to allow Rupert Murdoch to infiltrate our free press standards

Sir Richard Branson said something like "if we let him, Murdock will destroy democracy".

We ignored Australia and England- look at the dumb down we got!

WSJ- Dumb it Down President!

BE PROUD!

Posted by: sasha2008 | August 13, 2009 10:10 AM | Report abuse

Spector is a fool. He talks that this doesn't represent the country. Well, Arlan, you don't represent the country, you represent the country as a whole, you represent the people who voted for you.

So you slapped them in the face twice... once when you switched parties and another when you assumed you were going to support this non-defined healthcare bill *because you're smarter than everyone else*.

Well, he and David Scott from Georgia can claim they're doing the right thing, but the funny part about the internet is that the facts are laid bare, if you care to watch:

http://hotair.com/archives/2009/08/07/video-democrat-screams-at-constituent-for-asking-tough-question-on-health-care/

Democrats are touchy on this subject because they know they'll get slaughtered in the elections if the facts come to light.

Arlan, you're a little too tricky for your own good.

Posted by: Ombudsman1 | August 13, 2009 10:09 AM | Report abuse

And onto the health care debate. With regard to "government health care" and "socialized medicine".

I've experienced both and they were great. Far superior than my "regular" (Blue Cross/Blue Shield" health care - though my BC/BS plan is superior to other plans out there.

Government health care: I've gotten superior care via the military. Government run health care. My experiences, even with complex medical issues, was outstanding.

Socialized medicine: While traveling through Europe, I developed an infection in my hand that almost reached the bone. A trip to the local American Express travel office in Amesterdam (for referral suggestions) sent me to the OLVG clinic just outside the city. Clean, efficient, quick and superior service. Outpatient minor surgery within 1.5 hours of check in. Cost me nothing except for bandages and (inexpensive) medicine.

Posted by: Hawaiiexpat | August 13, 2009 10:06 AM | Report abuse

jaebersole: You got that exactly backwards. That's not a scorecard to the right--it's the Senate seats most likely to CHANGE HANDS. And the up arrow means that (CC thinks) Toomey(R) is more likely to win this seat than (CC thought) last time he ranked the Senate seats. DUH.

Posted by: mikeinmidland | August 13, 2009 10:03 AM | Report abuse

leichtman wrote
"This morning France and Great Britain economist saying they are seeing the end of their recession"

My sources say Germany & France, but your point is taken.

Posted by: bsimon1 | August 13, 2009 10:02 AM | Report abuse

@Gallenod - really well written, thoughtful post. You need to post here more....sort of as the anti-bhoomes/zouk.

Posted by: Hawaiiexpat | August 13, 2009 10:00 AM | Report abuse

The abject fear of what a President Cheney would do to this country kept Bush safer than the Secret Service.

Posted by: mikeinmidland | August 13, 2009 9:57 AM | Report abuse

angie -- then they should be angry at republicans, who caused this whole financial meltdown in the first place.

Posted by: drindl | August 13, 2009 9:56 AM | Report abuse

Of course they have an entire article debating whether the town-hall confrontation was a plus or a minus, and then he slyly chalks it up as a "plus" in his scorecard to the right. Nice objectivity.

Posted by: jaebersole | August 13, 2009 9:54 AM | Report abuse

The bottom line is - Specter will say and do anything - even change parties - to keep his seat in the Senate.
Because - well, the Senate can't survive without Specter and by golly! - he's gonna flim flam his way to keep his seat!

It's time for Sestak!

Posted by: angie12106 | August 13, 2009 9:54 AM | Report abuse

I have to admit that I felt a lot of sympathy for the old devil when he faced down those violent loonies. Specter is one tough bird. At his age and as a cancer survivor, he sure looks good.

Must be his excellent health care plan! If only the rest of us could have one like it... hmmm...

As to Cheney, people, we dodged a bullet. Literally. We came so close to nuclear inferno and WW3, and most of us didn't even know it. We are all lucky to have survived.

Posted by: drindl | August 13, 2009 9:53 AM | Report abuse

For REM albums, I have to go with Murmer.

Posted by: bsimon1 | August 13, 2009 9:51 AM | Report abuse

WHICH bill is being discussed at these Town Hall meetings.

My reason for asking is because a group of Democrats said there are four bills floating around, and HR3200 is NOT the one being dicussed.

It's really important we know WHICH bill is being discussed so we can be prepared to ask "civil and intelligent" questions.

If the Town Hall meeting stumpers are just "winging it," and everything discussed is subject to change, why would I want to waste my time in a crowded, stufffy and angry meeting room?

Would someone please tell me if its time to put HR3200 back on the shelf (after working through nearly 2/3 of this monster)?

Posted by: asmith1 | August 13, 2009 9:51 AM | Report abuse

SNARLIN' ARLEN: At 80, He's Finding His Voice. He's Mad as Hell and Is Not Going to Take It (or Enable It) Anymore (or so one hopes...)

Arlen Specter is one tough old solider who has absolutely nothing to lose and knows it.

Sen. Specter carries with him each day a tremendous burden of history. It's my "read" that he sees what is happening in this country, in his state, and with his (political) deathbed conversion to the Democratic Party, has finally made the psychic connection between his role in momentous events in American history and the current state of affairs.

When he says the health care goons are "not representative" of the public sentiment on the issue, he knows much more than he's saying. And his body language at those town halls tells me that he's mad as hell as is not going to take it anymore.

Is that wishful thinking? Perhaps; just as I wish the Senator would read the article linked below, based on events happening in PA and throughout the nation and written by one of his constituents, someone he's interacted with in the past.

The health care rabble-rousers are symptomatic of a much deeper ailment in the body politic. Specter knows it. Finally, at age 80, it appears he's ready to stand up and right instead of enabling the sinister forces in society and in government that are subverting the Constitution and the rule of law in America.

http://nowpublic.com/world/gestapo-usa-govt-funded-vigilante-network-terrorizes-america

OR (if link is corrupted / disabled):

http://NowPublic.com/scrivener RE: GESTAPO USA"

Posted by: scrivener50 | August 13, 2009 9:51 AM | Report abuse

>>How you can be called a traitor to your country, when you are trying to reform health care, is beyond logic.

You are dealing with a lot of people that down right despise the federal govenrment and don't care for anyone outside of themselves. Logic and emotion don't really come into it for them. If it's not affecting them personally it's not a problem apparently.

Posted by: mtcooley | August 13, 2009 9:50 AM | Report abuse

The public's outrage at town halls isn't solely limited to health care reform!
During the past year, people have lost....jobs, homes, health insurance, 401Ks, kids' college funds, etc. - WHILE our government gave BILLIONS of taxpayers' monies to the very institutions that created the mess!
And then there's all those ZILLION dollar bonuses to employees - rewarded for covering up the financial crisis!

People are VERY ANGRY! - and would be protesting even if health care reform were not on the agenda.

Posted by: angie12106 | August 13, 2009 9:48 AM | Report abuse

Is it just Me or are there only White Folks who are angry?
Where is the traditional
" Angry Black Man?" or the
" Angry Black Sister?"
Is it just a co incidence or am I on to something?
Doesn't Black Folks care about Health Insurance too?

Posted by: Carprin | August 13, 2009 9:44 AM | Report abuse

Not really a crowd who scares anyone, bhoomes? You want to bet?

They're violent, they shove and scream, they talk about killing and bloodshed, they show up with guns and knives and ugly defaced pictures of a black man -- our president -- and then shout racist taunts, they talk about 'taking back our country' and violent revolution.

They not only scare me, they make me sick and frightened that our president will be assasinated.

Posted by: drindl | August 13, 2009 9:43 AM | Report abuse

The sight of Specter calmly defending Obama's reform agenda against these right-wing zealots will reassure Democratic voters in Pittsburg and Philly. He is solidifying his cred as a Democrat. That's the "turning point." Whether it's sufficient is the question that remains.

Posted by: mikeinmidland | August 13, 2009 9:41 AM | Report abuse

its called a heckler veto.

Scaring Americans on every issue seems to be a new industry using whatever tactics including just making statements up about healthcare and calling them facts, to make your point. Frightening people is ceratinly much easier intellectually then having a thoughtful debae. No one objects to their appearance at these townhall meetings but bringing guns to these events, tearing up signs you don't agree with, starting fights, and shouting insults at the Congress person, is counterproductive. Believe me if these protestors manage to once again kill healthcare reform, we end up with the status quo and then through some adversity they have a personal crisis with their own current healthcare coverage, they will be the first ones at their Congress person's doorsteps complaining that nothing was done to fix the problem.

Posted by: leichtman | August 13, 2009 9:37 AM | Report abuse

Excellent post, Gallenod.
----
@infantry: Whether Specter is re-elected is up to the voters of PA, but I think it is incorrect to suggest he is a "traitor to his party." Specter is a moderate in a moderate state. The GOP has moved to the right, to the point that he was going to be defeated in the GOP primary.

How you can be called a traitor to your country, when you are trying to reform health care, is beyond logic.

Posted by: mikeinmidland | August 13, 2009 9:35 AM | Report abuse

"The only footage broadcast from these events is viciously misinformed citizens disrupting an attempt to actually talk about something important."

margaret -- always love your commentary. how sad all this is -- like watching trained seals in a circus -- these poor sad fools attacking the hand that feeds me, fighting against something that could help them.

Posted by: drindl | August 13, 2009 9:32 AM | Report abuse

So what *was* the "turning point" -- the whole point of the story -- that was claimed in the third paragraph? The story never says, and this whole claim is undermined in the next paragraph, when Cilliza says that what it means "remained a matter of significant debate."

More sharp analysis from Chris Cilizza. Just what I've come to expect from "The Fix".

Posted by: xcrunner771 | August 13, 2009 9:31 AM | Report abuse

Arlen Spector is the wrong person to play "Chicken" with in public (or private). He is an incredibly tough old bird. He did well in the town hall, which will help his chances against Sestak, but the tenor of the primary will become less about who is the best Democrat and more about who is the future for Pennsylvania Democrats. If Spector still looks like an old, opportunistic turncoat to Democratic primary voters next year, Sestak will take him out.

There may be some people being paid to incite the "mob" at these town halls, but most of the people doing the disrupting are likely "true believers" who are as unhinged about Obama being president as many on the left were about Bush being president. You don't have to pay them to show up and shout. They already believe the worst, so they will accept anything they hear or read that reinforces their beliefs and act accordingly.

There is a significant fraction of the population that is scared by things like the economic crisis, the idea of terrorists with nuclear weapons, government taking over our private lives, the deficit, people with (or not allowed to have) guns, and various other issues that light their personal fuses. They're citizens, just like everyone else, and they have the right to voice their opinions, no matter how irrational they may sound to anyone else.

Where democracy breaks down is when they don't allow others to speak. The Bush administration worked very hard to control public settings and avoid exposing themselves to the kind of public dissent that the Democrats now face, but the opposition to Bush was no less fervent than what the Tea Baggers are doing now.

During Bush, news reporting on dissent was pretty tepid because you didn't have video of people shouting at politicians in public. Debate was indirect and fairly abstract to most people. Now we have direct contact between the two sides which, despite the confrontational nature, is actually healthier in the long run. It's better to have everything out in the open where we can judge the debate (and the debators) directly.

Posted by: Gallenod | August 13, 2009 9:25 AM | Report abuse

ebabin
what is fascinating is to hear the silence from these protestors the minute they are asked as she was, then are you ready to repeal Medicare, Social Security and VA healthcare?

to me that seems the best approach to responding to these nay sayers.

Posted by: leichtman | August 13, 2009 9:23 AM | Report abuse

@ahashburn:

If the voters of Pennsylvania think he's doing a bad job, they should not vote for him. The Dems can go for Sestak; if Specter beats him, then the alternative looks like Toomey. No need for term limits or age limits.

As near as I can tell, he waded into a conservative part of his state and tried to explain the president's priorities on health-care reform.

I'm not a fan, but he did a stand-up job.

Posted by: mikeinmidland | August 13, 2009 9:23 AM | Report abuse

bye bye spector. traitor to your party and your country.
neither you nor your ilk will be around long. anyone who wants to fundamentally change America by stealth will be found and turned out.
sell your office as fast as you can - you will not be there long.

Posted by: infantry11b4faus | August 13, 2009 9:19 AM | Report abuse

comnservative guest on CNBC saying less than 25% chance of double dip recession, This morning France and Great Britain economist saying they are seeing the end of their recession and China expecting 8-10% growth as well as what the DOW is telling us. I doubt I am alone seeing green shoots. Obama can not raise a flag saying mission accomplished but can certainly claim all the same Nay Sayers screaming that the stimulus was a failure a month ago were wrong, so why should that say negative energy be trusted on healthcare reform. Employment numbers are still biggest concern though. Still think that townhall in Lebanon will show backlash and sympathy for Specter in next round of polling.

Posted by: leichtman | August 13, 2009 9:18 AM | Report abuse

The woman who made the sound bites asking about protecting the the Constitution was on Hardball also. It was obvious she didn't have a single thought process going through her head while she was questioned. I would have felt bad for her except this is the opposition we're dealing with -- only loudmouths without knowing what they are talking about.

Posted by: ebabin | August 13, 2009 9:13 AM | Report abuse

I'm beginning to think that there should be maximum age limits for members of Congress. Dinosaurs like Spector inhibit the new ideas.

Posted by: ahashburn | August 13, 2009 9:10 AM | Report abuse

Leichman don't get ahead of yourself on the economy. A lot of very smart people believe this will be a double dip recession. After the Fed was caught flat footed on the last recession/banking crises, I don't believe I would have to much confidence in their predictions.

Posted by: vbhoomes | August 13, 2009 9:09 AM | Report abuse

mark I am far from a Spector supporter but somehow I sense that seeing videos of angry mobs yelling at a 80 year old cancer survivor does nothing but bring sympathy for him. I am guessing that his polling numbers will actually improve by this event.

Posted by: leichtman | August 13, 2009 9:04 AM | Report abuse

Chris, FYI: Senator Specter met with members of the editorial board of the Harrisburg Patriot-News for a Q & A session yesterday, in which they discussed both the Lebanon town hall meeting and the health care bill:

Harrisburg Patriot-News Link:
http://www.pennlive.com/midstate/index.ssf/2009/08/qa_with_sen_arlen_specter_on_h.html

Posted by: NativeNorthernVirginian | August 13, 2009 9:03 AM | Report abuse

bhoomes posted:

"do you think all of those young people who voted for Obama because he was a new fresh face, will show up to vote for 80 year Arlen Specter? I have my doubts."

As to the under 30 voters, point taken. Otherwise, I do not think it matters if the demonstrators who go postal are angry old farts or longhairs or gays [thanx for that visual, Margaret]. It all looks so unsettling to peace and tranquility.

Posted by: mark_in_austin | August 13, 2009 8:54 AM | Report abuse

the news today is full of reports of the economy rebounding. The mobs on the right screamed about Obama's economic stimulus plan and how it wasn't working. Perhaps he should start using that chip to now say those same Nay sayers (and that is what they were actually chanting at the healthcare forums here locally) were wrong about the economy and are once again simply wrong about healthcare reform. Curious where all of that election energy from his supporters and millions of voices for Obama have suddenly gone to when it comes to responding to all of the healthcare Nay Sayers and misinformation machine. Where is the push back?

Posted by: leichtman | August 13, 2009 8:54 AM | Report abuse

Murmur and Fables are REM's best.

Before they went all politico...

That was when they would have wanted to vote out ALL the incumbants, which is ALWAYS the right thing to do.

Posted by: postfan1 | August 13, 2009 8:51 AM | Report abuse

"Town hall meetings are an American tradition - we should allow everyone to express their views without disruption - even if we disagree!"
SenJohnMcCain
John McCain

Posted by: Jihm | August 13, 2009 8:49 AM | Report abuse

Yeah Mark, but the crowd you are referring to were mostly young long hair radicals who scared the older folks who votes. The crowd today are mostly senior citizens who sing "God Bless America". Not really a crowd that scares anybody and we know they will vote, do you think all of those young people who voted for Obama because he was a new fresh face, will show up to vote for 80 year Arlen Specter? I have my doubts.

Posted by: vbhoomes | August 13, 2009 8:47 AM | Report abuse

It is what it is. Ignorance at its best. Everyone should know that these people are being paid to show up at this rallies and act like fools. Most of them don't even scream out valid points. And what is too funny that most of them are on Medicare and actually believe that this health program is not government run...DUH!!

And being truthful what really scares me about a few of these folks is that they are making racist statements which makes me think what they are really mad and scared about is...that a Black Man is president and that he is going to do their racists butts in?

I wish these people would take a breath and take time to think before speaking and look at the benefits for those that need health care at its best. Until one has experienced living without health insurance one can't imagine how not having it is living ones life on the edge.

Brings to mind the McCann Voting Staffer that said she was attacked by a Black Man that wrote on her face and come find out it was all a lie. It will take some time but this truth about this will come out and I can't wait!!

Posted by: msruby36 | August 13, 2009 8:44 AM | Report abuse

Specter is a spectacle. Hopefully, Pennsylvanians will this year move this relic into retirement. What an joke of a man. Hell, he isn't even a man. He's sell Pennsylvania out tomorrow for his own gain.

Posted by: WmJLePetomane | August 13, 2009 8:37 AM | Report abuse

The woman who read her question to Specter when asked by Hannity, did she get her question answered she said she didn't listen to the answer. On CNN she said she had not read the Constitution. Why was she there? A lot of the people who are attending these meetings are just like her - loud; rude; obnoxious; and don't have a clue what they're reading.

Posted by: rlj1 | August 13, 2009 8:36 AM | Report abuse

The woman who read her question to Specter when asked by Hannity, did she get her question answered she said she didn't listen to the answer. On CNN she said she had not read the Constitution. Why was she there? A lot of the people who are attending these meetings are just like her - loud; rude; obnoxious; and don't have a clue what they're reading.

Posted by: rlj1 | August 13, 2009 8:36 AM | Report abuse

mark-in-austin, it is always hard to judge the effect hard-core demonstrators have.

In the 80's I had a lot of friends die of AIDs (I worked in museums, my twin worked in libraries -- half the men we worked with were gay). I marched in a lot of parades advocating gay rights and HIV funding and I loved the spirit of the strapped Leather Boys and the be-jeweled Big Fairies 'cause they did turn out, but I also felt they alienated the general public from their cause. The Foaming Base will do the same thing here: they look ridiculous and ill-informed.

Posted by: margaretmeyers | August 13, 2009 8:35 AM | Report abuse

The right wing anarchists think that if they yell the loudest they will win the votes in 2010 and beyond??? Guess what "cons" those of us who support and understand health care reform will vote you out again. Yelling at meetings that are meant to explain reform and shouting questions about euthanasia, interrupting other speakers will not win you votes but further disdain from everyone sane.

Posted by: clairevb | August 13, 2009 8:34 AM | Report abuse

I saw that woman at that meeting spouting unfounded nonsense at Specter, then later, being interviewed, she admitted she didn't listen to half of his response.

These noisy idiots have no facts to base their fears on, they are the lackeys of the lobbyists for private insurance. "It is the tale of an idiot, much noise and fury, signifying nothing."

They'd better not complain if they're ever turned down for an expensive treatment if health care reform doesn't succeed.

Posted by: fluxgirl | August 13, 2009 8:26 AM | Report abuse

"Referring to the intensity of emotion against Specter as "jaw-dropping"..."

The "jaw-dropping" thing was how worked-up and nutty the questioners appeared. You would have thought Satan was at their doors.

I was forwarded that bullet list posted by Free Republic, and if your brain was of the size that accommodates Tea Bagging, Birthers and Glenn Beck then Free Republic's BS about "Death Panels," all doctors paid the same regardless of practice, and mandatory government health IDs would find a nice home there, too.

Posted by: margaretmeyers | August 13, 2009 8:20 AM | Report abuse

bhoomes, I remember angry against 'Nam and Chicago '68 and the fervor of the McG voters in '72. Angry people vote, but they may also create a backlash among people who find rage frightening, and who might have stayed home if they had not seen the outbursts.

I also think that when the pink group of women disrupt Senate Committees and get tossed they commit hara kiri, too.

Posted by: mark_in_austin | August 13, 2009 8:13 AM | Report abuse

Definitely Lifes Rich Pageant. One of the great albums of all time.

Posted by: F4poet99 | August 13, 2009 8:06 AM | Report abuse

What does the town hall mean? It means Lebanon is the heart of the conservative base in Pennsylvania and those folks don;t like Specter very much. That's it.

http://www.political-buzz.com/

Posted by: parkerfl1 | August 13, 2009 8:04 AM | Report abuse

Intensity of voters is extremely important in politics, at the end of they day, the only thing that counts is who shows up to vote. You can count on the people at the town hall meetings to show up to vote in 2010. Not so sure about Obama voters. Cheney comes off as sour grapes after he lost influence with GWB but still believe Cheney was the right person to have after 911. He plays for keeps. But I would agree Rumsfeld was an awful SECDEF. If he had not been so arrogant and listened more to his military advisors, we could had got Iraq right the 1st time and save a lot of precious american blood.

Posted by: vbhoomes | August 13, 2009 7:51 AM | Report abuse

When you are in a room full of barking morons barking moronically it isn't hard to be the smartest person in the room.

I thought Specter came off well. His answers were calm, short and fact based. The questioners looked panicky and beyond reason. The only footage broadcast from these events is viciously misinformed citizens disrupting an attempt to actually talk about something important. The press is reinforcing the worst participants.

The Fix, Maureen Dowd and other columnists are very quick to criticize the politicians at these Town Halls (didn’t handle it right, looked frazzled, lost their momentum, etc). This is ridiculous. The barking morons get a pass on their behavior: they get a pass on the idiocy of their questions (usually a screamed lie) and their corporate masters are getting a pass on the vile disinformation they are using to SCARE people away from a program that would benefit most of them.

That was Specter’s second appearance in support of health care reform, and he’s looking more like a Democrat. He *is* an asset: experienced, intelligent, good in a fight. His previous appearance with Sibelius got less attention, but then the media hadn’t yet realized how well this mess was going to sell. I hope he appears again, because we need to take this debate back from the birthers and Club for Growth and the Glenn Beck White Culture crowd.

I’m looking forward to the “Base” finally self-immolating in the heat of their firmly-held, unyielding, spoon-fed idiocy.

Posted by: margaretmeyers | August 13, 2009 7:14 AM | Report abuse

I always thought REM was whiny for my power blues oriented tastes. Both my oldest two kids [now 39 and 35] liked them.

Is that better, Ddawd?

Hey - are you in LA, the benighted Acadia of the south?

Posted by: mark_in_austin | August 13, 2009 6:45 AM | Report abuse

Mark, stay on topic please!

Posted by: DDAWD | August 13, 2009 6:40 AM | Report abuse

On Spector: one newsreel clip seems to show him at 80 getting between two antagonists [to each other] and attempting to separate them, while another clip has him unwavering in meeting the gaze of the fellow described as invoking God's wrath against him. Seems like a tough old senator to me, FWIW.

On Cheney; we watched from afar the second GWB Admin move gradually back from neoconservative interventionism toward realpolitik. This pendulum swing can be captured in the persons of Rumsfeld and Gates. The power that Cheney wielded for five years will fascinate historians for years. The personality and world view of Cheney - so apparently obsessed with power and by suspicion - will cost a generation of Americans, dearly. But a sort of doppelganger looms.

To me the supposed revelation of the book will not be so much the power Cheney lost, but the nature of the grip of Rumsfeld over the first GWB Admin, and over Cheney himself. Together they were a magnetic pole that guided the ship of state, in the wrong direction, IMO. And I admit to having felt relieved and assured that GWB had chosen them in the first instance.

Posted by: mark_in_austin | August 13, 2009 6:36 AM | Report abuse

I like pretty much everything REM does, so it's hard for me to be objective about it. I liked Monster when it came out, but now it's more of a novelty to me. REM trying to be glam. It's fun, but not profound. The kind of album that makes you want turn your amp up to eleven and rock out with Star 69.

It was their last big time selling album, but New Adventures in Hi Fi, the one right after Monster is a great record and one of my favorites. I also liked the experimentation in Up which came after New Adventures. Not a "great" record, but a very thought-provoking one.

Posted by: DDAWD | August 13, 2009 6:31 AM | Report abuse

Re REM: Murmur was great and they were one of those bands that kept building on their previous albums, generally topping them as they went along. They hit a brick wall with Monster....

Posted by: RickJ | August 13, 2009 6:21 AM | Report abuse

1) For some reason, I like Life's Rich Pageant the most. I think it's got a good variation in tempo ranging from "These Days" to "Fall On Me". Probably their least heralded IRS record, but my favorite.

2) Murmur is a classic and the REM standard. Radio Free Europe is their quintessential REM song with an incomprehensible Stipe to a jangly Buck and Mills with his backup singing and Berry being a solid timekeeper. The album has such a great dreamy quality with Perfect Circle and Talk About the Passion. West of the Fields is also a great closer.

3) Fables is one that took me a few years to really like, but it was worth it. Driver 8 was a WHFS standard when I was a teenager, so I knew that song well. As I listened to the album more in college, I really got a sense of what they were trying to do and how the record was put together. It's really like a long collection of stories (hence the title Fables). The album gets off to a good start with three pretty accessible tracks. Life and How to Live it is the first challenging song on there and it took me a while to really get. The last two songs also took me a while to get into, but the trick is to really listen close to the guitar. I think it's some of Buck's best work. Wendell Gee is also a good closing song. It's like getting to the end of a really good book. You're sorry it's over, but also have a really satisfied feel and a sense of closure. Even as I write this, I can hear Mills' voice and Buck's guitar trailing off in those last few notes.

4) Reckoning
5) Document

Posted by: DDAWD | August 13, 2009 6:05 AM | Report abuse

I don't think we've seen the public backlash yet from the town hall meetings that these barbaric morons are attempting to hijack. They still don't realise that the 'if you're not with us, you're against us' way of governing was voted out in the last election.

Specter and others have done an admirable job in trying to reason with these hooligans. (It's ironic that these morons scream about Naziism, when they are fascists at heart....)

Re Palin: her sinking poll numbers will soon match her IQ

Re Cheney & Bush; hee hee! The ventriloquist is angry with his dummy..

Posted by: RickJ | August 13, 2009 6:04 AM | Report abuse

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