Sep 272013
 

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  214 Responses to “Open Blogging”

  1. Since we all know that all Dems are unborn baby killers and Reps are after birth baby killers and libertarians want everyone to use heroin and dance naked in the streets, we did a great job last week here, broad brushing our political “enemies”.

    Anyone want to talk obamacare and the proper role of the federal govt?

  2. Obamacare is our own unique form of self-interest politics on steroids. There are enough Obamahaters out there to cloud any discussion and the Obamadrama never relents. Besides that if you talk to health care providers they are still largely clueless as to what is coming. The interest groups are going to pick this carcass apart till there will be little resemblance to the original. Which means the revenue will be decreased while the expenses skyrocket.

    As for the proper role of the federal government? It is way too late to achieve that in America. When you depart from the baseline of expecting the government to be responsible then you cannot raise the subject of what is proper. All that is left is the discussion of what is possible after the collapse of reason. The seed is sown and the harvest is ripe. Salvation is now the only remedy but alas… Send in the reapers.

  3. The proper role of government is to keep the government open and not try to shut it down just because you don’t get your own way.

  4. http://wapc.mlb.com/play?content_id=30976977

    For all the years I have been a Rockies fan, good and bad years, a lot more bad than good, Todd Helton has been the single pillar of strength for the team.

    A radio show host asked who would be on Colorado’s Mt. Rushmore. John Elway, Todd Helton, Joe Sakic, Alex English. No question.

  5. MLD,

    Where does that idea come from? I understand that appeals to founding documents fall on deaf ears, but perhaps you could provide your own documentation that states that govt exists to exist.

  6. Current CBO estimates that the ACA will add 1.363 trillion dollars to the federal deficit over the next 10 years.

  7. Jim,
    Governments don’t exist just to exist. But how do you have order if every program after have gone through the legislative process, properly voted and signed into law is then subjected to government shut down because of a minority opinion?

    Obviously you do not support our republic form of government – what form do you support?

    I don’t like speed limit laws but do I force a government shutdown?

  8. “Current CBO estimates that the ACA will add 1.363 trillion dollars to the federal deficit over the next 10 years.”

    So, raise taxes to cover it. (we do it when we order new warships)

    Now I will state that I am not fond of ACA, but I am not in a position of need, but it is the law. If you want it repealed, go about it the regular way. Write up legislation that says “I want to repeal ACA” – don’t do it as an attachment to something else and have a vote.

    You do realize in this country you sometimes are in a minority and you have to accept it.

  9. MLD,

    I’m not in favor of a govt shut down. I think our constitutional republic is the best form of govt on the planet.

  10. MLD – First, the House is as much a part of the government as the Senate and the GOP is the majority there. So where do you get “minority” opinion (especially when poll after poll shows the public’s dissatisfaction to this law – more and more as different parts get implemented)

    Second, no Congress can bind another future Congress. You should know that. Would you be opposed to a newly elected Congress trying to defund an unpopular war that otherwise was pushed through with only one-party support in an earlier Congress years before? Somehow I doubt it.

    Especially if the reason for the different makeup of that later Congress is the people have exercised their voting rights largely due to the unpopularity of that war? There have been two House elections since Obamacare passed, and the people have shown quite a change in who they want representing them in the “people’s house”

    Why do you think over the last few years Reid refuses some of these House votes ever making it to the Senate floor? It protects his Democrats in red states facing reelection from having to go on record with their support for legislation unpopular in their home state.

    Given that Obamacare is a trainwreck from the legislative side, and given Obama himself has decreed by executive fiat all sorts of waivers and exceptions as he seems fit – I believe the idea of a one year delay is a good compromise right now. If the gov shuts down it will be due solely to Reid and/or Obama. The states are not ready with the exchanges, the government is not ready with a host of its responsibilities. Push the thing back a year.

    And if that is so unpopular, then the GOP will get killed in the House elections of 2014 and you won’t have to worry.

    By the way, IF it shuts down, expect piece by piece House bills to fund crucial parts of the government one agency and program at a time. You going to oppose Reid not bringing those to a vote if he chooses to do so, or Obama vetoing such bills if he chooses to do so?

  11. “First, the House is as much a part of the government as the Senate and the GOP is the majority there.”

    Zakly. For some reason in the public debate it is as if the Republican authority in the House is illegitimate. They were elected.

  12. MLD – Sorry for the poor form in asking questions – since I have to run out for the morning.

    And of course, the real battles will be taking place this afternoon and have some of my attention – they will make the D.C. stuff look like a social circle.

    Personally, I am hoping for a Protestant victory over the Catholics – touchdown Jesus notwithstanding. 🙂

  13. I see an America with a Republican majority in House and Senate, Ted Cruz in the Oval Office, and Tim Tebow starting at QB for Jacksonville.

    America, the way it oughtta be.

  14. Just reverse it – legislation passes to outlaw abortion. Does the opposing party attach debilitating legislation to a completely unrelated bill threatening government shut down.

    Is that legitimate?

  15. I have spoken to very few people who are against Obamacare – almost everyone I speak with admit that they don’t understand it.

    But hey, I don’t understand tax laws either – but I pay my taxes.

  16. MLD,

    I’m confident that you’re aware that it is mathematically impossible to tax our way out of our current debt.

  17. Steve, I will ask you the same thing I asked Jim … that went unanswered.

    Why attach defunding to this unrelated bill. Why not be open and honest (which exists in neither party)

    Why doesn’t the House leader draft a bill to scrap Obamacare? Go through the legislative process and have an up or down vote?

    If that were done, would you stand by the vote regardless how it came out?

  18. Jim, I didn’t want to tax our way out of our current debt – just the Obamacare care part you brought up – my new pay as you go plan.

    I am not for higher taxes – I do my own taxes and can proudly say that I have never paid one penny more than I was willing to pay.

  19. MLD,

    The ACA should be or not be funded on it’s own. I don’t think the CR measure was the smartest tactic. I also don’t think that the ACA should be judged based on a political tactic.

    It’s an unprecedented requirement of govt, and really bad law that will eventually hurt everyone.

    When in history has our govt forced us to buy something, or pay a penalty for not buying something? It’s lunacy.

  20. Jim,
    “When in history has our govt forced us to buy something, or pay a penalty for not buying something? It’s lunacy.”

    Oh, they have done it several times … they made us “buy” the income tax and they made us buy “the Fed”. – Both have cost us more than ACA.

  21. MLD,

    ACA was supposed to pay for itself (with our money). Alas, the devil’s in the details. The lynchpin that garnered Supreme Court approval was defining ACA as a tax.

    So, you want a tax on top of a tax to pay for a really bad idea.

  22. MLD-you’re smarter than that. Income tax forces no one to buy a service.

  23. Jim,
    I have said that I am not fond of ACA. What I am arguing against is the oppositions tactics – which I think are desperate and uncalled for.

    I will ask you again – if there is so much support to rescind ACA why not go through and just get a new up or down vote. And if the vote were taken would you support the vote?

  24. MLD,

    No I would not support the vote. Our representatives who swore to uphold and defend the constitution have no legal right to pass unconstitutional laws.

    I’ll say in advance that no one cares. What will not be discussed here is the proper, legal role of our federal govt.

  25. I am required to buy car insurance.
    I am required to pay for drones that kill indiscriminately.
    I have no problem paying for something that might add a few years too my life.
    I’m for universal health care.
    This particular attempt at that has been so politicized that I have no idea what the truth is about it’s cost or effectiveness.
    I only know my doctor says it will be good for us and I’m signing up on the 1st.

  26. “have no legal right to pass unconstitutional laws.”

    And the courts will decide that if and when it comes up.

    But you are arguing the pro abortion position when they protest that pro-life legislation is unconstitutional and they too don’t accept the legislation. They would say the same thing “have no legal right to pass unconstitutional laws.”

  27. I guess we are all limited where we can put our time and thoughts on these issues.

    I am much more concerned about these new school transgender laws in California than I am ACA.

  28. Non-Obamacare comment: The proper, legal role of our federal government overflowed its boundaries of state-run education with the advent of No-Child-Left-Behind. Education now exists in a culture of fear.

  29. CK,

    I know a lot of teachers who agree with that.

  30. Our children are being used as pawns in a game that began when Russia launched Sputnik.

  31. Yep, Michael, me too.

  32. Michael,

    The federal govt does not require you to buy car insurance. National Defense is an enumerated power, and the primary reason for the congressional authority to tax.

    You know how I feel about war, so I’ll leave drones out of it.

    Forced to pay for is not the same as forced to personally buy a specific product. The ACA is historic in this regard.

  33. I don’t care about the forced to pay. I think if someone refuses to buy insurance (you know, those 30yr olds who think they are invincible) should be forced to opt out of any public care if they get sick or injured.

    Jim, am I on the right track?

  34. CK is right about Sputnik, although the breach was set in motion 90 years earlier.

    The effects of federal intrusion into education is an example of why this stuff matters.

  35. MLD,

    If my track is the right track, the terms “forced” and “public care” (as interpreted today) are usually antithetical to federal powers. There are a few exceptions, as it is perfectly legal to force me at gunpoint to pay taxes.

  36. As with anything, your perspective matters. If I don’t have healthcare now, I’m inclined to believe ACA is the solution. If I’m a member of the house or congress, I really don’t care, because I’m exempt– all I care about is not enflaming too many of my constituents, which might interfere with my permanent re-election prospects. If I’m a small business owner, I will make darn sure I never breach that 49 employee mark, or if I do, my employees will all work 30 hours or less a week because profit margins in small businesses cannot support even the minimal plan per employee. Since small business comprises more than 70% of job creation in this country, the bottom line is, as an economy, we’ve just signed up for logarithmically expanding welfare and food stamp participation. Problem is, there will be no one to pay the bill, so none of this is sustainable even in the short term.

  37. Linnea is correct.

  38. Please understand that this discussion has nothing to do with caring about modern welfare, whether it’s ADA, food stamps, or any other benefits. The issue is this and only this- Article 1 Section 8 defines the role of the federal govt. Enumerated powers are powers that are listed as things that the federal government can do. If they aren’t listed then they are powers that are left up to state and local governments.

    If California wants to be a welfare state, it’s their business. If they want legal abortion or want to outlaw it, it is their business. The people have the right to ruin their own state. The fed govt has no legal right to destroy the union.

  39. We should also push for what Rand Paul has been calling for all week and take away the government exemptions.

    If this law is so great why are they not all pushing to sign up?

    Did you know that federal employees are exempt from this law?
    It ain’t just Congress, POTUS and SCOTUS that are exempted.

  40. Derek,

    I’m sorta under the weather, and can’t find the right term. It’s almost like taxation without representation, but it’s not the same thing. Our elected representatives have become a type of overlords who aren’t effected by the legislation they pass.

    Do you know the term I’m looking for?

  41. Jim: “Lying Hypocrites.” Is that the term you are looking for?

  42. “If California wants to be a welfare state, it’s their business. If they want legal abortion or want to outlaw it, it is their business. The people have the right to ruin their own state. The fed govt has no legal right to destroy the union.”

    So does Mississippi (I just wanted to show that I could spell it.) have the right to abolish public education or to spend 10% of what other states pay.

    I am not saying it’s a good idea – but if they did, the Feds must butt out? Our nation as a whole has no vested interest in the education of people from Mississippi?

  43. Good term, Nonnie.

    I know the behavior though.

    Martha Stewart was made an example of on insider trading and went to jail.
    Congressmen do basically the same thing and enrich their pockets daily.

    What is good for the goose, is never good for the gander. At least in the opinion of Congress.

  44. Leave Mississippi out of this. 🙂

  45. MLD,

    Make your argument from the constitution, or just say you don’t give a rip about how our nation was designed to function. There are 1000’s of “what if” scenarios.

  46. You may well all be right.
    From where I sit it appears irrelevant as this country has become an oligarchy run by and for the benefit of large corporations.
    It has also become of beast nation of the biblical variety.
    That’s all I’ve got…

  47. Jim, I wasn’t making an argument – I was asking you a direct question. According to your view and your view of the constitution;
    1.) Can MS drop public education?
    2.) Do we as a nation have any interest in the education of all our children?

    Yes or no is fine.

  48. MLD,

    I’ll respond occurring to your terms, and expect you to do the same. I’ve already explained my reasoning (according to the constitution, these are local issues), and would ask you to do the same.

    1-yes
    2-no

  49. Forgive my naivety but this is a serious question regarding “Who’s Online”. I assume that “guests” are anyone who is not a “bot” or a “member” but what are “bots” (Encarta Dictionary: noun – disease of farm animals) and how does one become a “member”?

  50. Bots are search engine robots.
    Members are people that have moderation credentials.
    Guests are everyone else.

  51. Jim,
    I am getting ready to go out. My wife is forcing me (I am sure it is unconstitutional) to go out with her to buy clothes … for me. (can you say fingernails on a chalk board?) She says I look like a homeless guy at work.

    Look, I am sure that in the amendments there are clauses about equal access etc.

    But according to your constitutional reading we are only Americans in war, interstate trade and paying taxes. After that we are just Californians and Floridians (who can’t vote correctly or count.) 😉

  52. MLD,

    Perhaps you’ll grace us with your constitutional reading when you return. I won’t hold my breath.

  53. I don’t understand the in’s and out’s of Obamacare but I do know that I have a close relative who has a serious chronic debilitating disease and even though he is a hard worker, has no health insurance and therefore cannot get proper treatment. A relative who lives in a third-world country sends him some medicine that is affordable in that country and if it weren’t for this he would have no remedies at all. He, who lives in rich America, can’t afford his medication so someone who lives in a poor Asian country sends it to him! (And this isn’t terribly effective- he needs serious medical treatment.) So while I don’t understand Obamacare, I do hope, if it ever really goes into effect, that it offers my relative some relief from what has been a life of misery.

  54. We have offered to pay for proper medical treatment, of course, but it would bankrupt the family and he is not willing to allow this and says he will just wait for Obamacare to kick in.

  55. The Constitution =/= Holy Scripture.

    I am not even sure democracy is such a good idea, after a few centuries. Started out ok because only a select few were allowed to vote, which wasn’t fair, but it did seem to work pretty well. I don’t have much confidence in human nature- it will almost always be self-serving and not necessarily self-serving in a wholesome way. When a culture hits the tipping point where the majority of voters are of the gimme gimme variety, you will not be electing strong principled statesmen but instead, panderers.

    This is what is happening, as MLD is saying (I think). We have elected people who have written and passed laws that the majority of Americans apparently want: gay marriage, abortion on demand, and welfare programs. This is democracy in action. It will only get worse.

    I am in favor of assistance for those who need it and I sure wish someone would pay for medical care for my relative but I am not in favor of promoting Detroit-style poverty but now that we have it, I don’t know how we can get out of it. It’s like feeding the stray cat that comes to your door: Once you start feeding it, you can’t just stop because by now the cat has forgotten how to hunt.

  56. Michael, Thank you for the answer.

  57. Those of you who follow the business news know that actually large corps are drowning in cash. They have tons of profits – yet the economy struggles on.

    As a result, in the last several months we are seeing share-buybacks with that cash at almost an unprecedented rate. It is the only thing they are willing to do with that money because nobody wants to hire, expand, build and the single largest reason is Obamacare. (Other draconian regulations are part of that equation too, but the biggest regulation is Obamacare hands down)

    So just as Linnea hit the nail on the head with how the small business owners are responding, there is a large-corp response as well that is similar.

    And to MLD – I am not sure how you see a bill being debated and voted upon which is to FUND the government as totally unrelated to FUNDING Obamacare. I would add that the House has had several straight up votes like you ask and Reid does not bring those to the Senate floor.

    Now…off to see my Sooners hopefully stomp the Irish…but I must say I am not at all confident.

  58. “I have a close relative who has a serious chronic debilitating disease and even though he is a hard worker, has no health insurance and therefore cannot get proper treatment. A relative who lives in a third-world country sends him some medicine that is affordable in that country and if it weren’t for this he would have no remedies at all. He, who lives in rich America, can’t afford his medication so someone who lives in a poor Asian country sends it to him!”

    And there it is. When it comes to health care, Third World country 1, the good ol’ US of A,
    z;ip.

    With the twisted “thinking” of the Right regarding healthcare, well, I guess they have no choice but to call Winston Churchill a Bolshevik.

    http://www.salon.com/2009/08/14/healthcare_28/

  59. We won’t know the full positive and negatives of 0bamacare until it’s implemented.

    I can state for a fact (I have the letter from my insurance company) that while 0bama promised that everyone could keep their current insurance if they wanted to…that is factually incorrect. We cannot keep our current policy and have to get new insurance by Jan. 1, 2014.

    Also fact: 0bama promised that “average families” would see a drop of 25% in their insurance premiums by the end of his first term. This is factually incorrect as well. Our rates have gone up every year since he was elected and our benefits have gotten less and less to try and keep the rate down. Our “new” insurance we are being forced to try and get to replace our old insurance that doesn’t meet the ACA requirements is looking to be much more expensive than our current plan.

    The other ugly detail about 0bamacare that looks to be fact: It will increase our Deficit by a significant amount, some $6.2 Trillion to the already bankrupt US balance sheet according to the GAO: http://reason.com/24-7/2013/02/26/gao-obamacare-will-increase-deficit-by-6

    So, while it will have some benefit to some in the US, there is another side to the equation: some will pay much more, some will have to get new plans…and collectively the Nation’s debt will be increased and we will take another step toward losing our Economic super-power and World Reserve Currency status to China or to a foreign World Central Bank body when we eventually blow up the System.

  60. RB,

    Actually, the percentage of people who will have to pay more is calculated to be in the 2-3% range.

    Here it is directly from the horse’s mouth — Jonathan Gruber, the architect of the plan and also of the original Romneycare:

    “The number of people covered by employer-based health-care plans is dropping by a percentage point a year. The system is falling apart. So you put in a new safety net. That means a few more people are going to come in. If you’re not willing to risk making some things worse, you’re never going to make anything better.

    “My estimate is that 80 percent of the people are not going to feel any change at all, and that 17 percent or so are going to find that things are better, and that about two or three percent will be worse off, and those are the people who benefit from the discriminatory nature of health-insurance at the present time.

    “If health-insurance companies can’t discriminate any more, those people will have to pay a little more. When we decided that people couldn’t discriminate in what they paid black people or women any more, people had to pay more because employers couldn’t discriminate in what they paid black people and women. Was that a bad thing?”

    http://dish.andrewsullivan.com/page/2/

  61. And for any of you still feverish with Obama Derangement Syndrome, here’s what Andrew Sullivan (a conservative) has to say:

    “The thing that staggers me about the Republican hatred of this law is its abstract quality. They never address the real problem of our massively inefficient private healthcare market, which is a huge burden on the economy. They never address how to help the millions of uninsured adults get the care all human beings need. They appear to regard a Heritage Foundation, free-market-designed, private healthcare exchange system as some kind of communist plot. They do not seem to believe there is any pressing problem at all. And they have nothing constructive to offer.

    This is not about Obamacare. It is not even about politics. It is about a form of revolt against the very country they live in.”

    http://dish.andrewsullivan.com/page/2/

  62. Michael @48–yes: “From where I sit it appears irrelevant as this country has become an oligarchy run by and for the benefit of large corporations”….and I might add that our bought, I mean elected, representatives are as much plutocrats as the wall street and banking architects or multinational corporate officers.

    Jim, when you were asking for the right term and Nonnie responded 🙂 I was thinking oligarchy.

    Attributed to Benjamin Franklin: “When the people find that they can vote themselves money, that will herald the end of the republic.”

  63. Andrew Sullivan a conservative? Not for at least a decade. .

    Here is truly a non-partisan source. The Congressional Budget Office, as to what to expect from Obamacare. I don’t know why so many of you think the uninsured get coverage under this law. That has NEVER been the case. Sure SOME uninsured may have a better chance, if you fit the right template (or know the right politicians to get a waiver).
    ———
    A 2012 estimate by the Congressional Budget Office estimated that about 30 million Americans will not have insurance in 2016, and roughly 6 million of them will face penalties. The penalties for individuals are expected to increase each year, and the uninsured will have to pay either a fee or percent of household income (whichever is greater).
    ———
    About 10% of the country still uninsured 6 years after this law would be passed. I’m guessing that anyone who thinks only 2-3% will pay more for healthcare wasn’t including all the folks who currently pay nothing by choice and will now start getting penalized.

    And yet, to add to the lies such as being able to keep your plan and so forth, young people who will start getting fined are being told by their President (with a straight face) that their insurance he is making them buy or be fined is going to cost about the same as their cell phone each month.

    As much as I hate the fact that this law has caused so many people to lose work, lose hours, not get hired and spend much much more in insurance premiums (ours have gone up much higher than they were pre-Obamacare) – I am at the point where I think it would be best for this nation to see the full effects of this law.

    It may be the best lesson possible for the future of our nation – and it certainly will end once and for all the lies pushed by one side, and the villification of the other side on this particular issue.

    It was not a coincidence that the full effects of the cost of this law did not kick in until 2014, when the law was signed in 2010. Anyone with half a clue for business, much less insurance, knew this would be a train wreck. If the people getting their letters from insurance carriers were getting them in Sep and Oct of 2012, instead of now – might have made for a very different Presidential 2012 reelection.

    And the powers that be can’t have that.

  64. Linnea,

    Historically, an oligarchy requires a revolution to overthrow it…

  65. Lute, I could fill the thread linking article after article and source after source that says most will see an increased rate, especially young single people and many families depending on the state you live in. There seems to be a big disagreement so far as to rates going up or done.

    I’ll offer this excerpt from the often-appealed-to Liberal source: McClatchy Washington Bureau:

    “President Barack Obama assailed Republicans on Thursday for trying to dismantle his signature health care law, saying it’s already providing a benefit of one kind or another to millions of Americans, including a drop in projected premium costs in nearly a dozen states. But experts predict that premiums on individual plans will increase in most states because of the new consumer protections the sweeping legislation requires. The impact on premiums will vary across states depending on geographic location, the type of coverage and the individual characteristics of the enrollee. For example, while Obama pointed to a reduction in premiums in New York state, state officials in Ohio say the average premium proposal for individual coverage next year is up 88 percent from this year’s average price as reported by the Society of Actuaries. In Maryland, CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield proposed a 25 percent increase in premiums next year, after first seeking a 50 percent increase. Final rates haven’t been determined in either state.”

    And the Associated Press Fact Checker (another often-appealed-to Liberal source):

    “Another year, another round of exaggeration from President Barack Obama and his administration about health insurance rebates.

    In his speech defending his health care law Thursday, Obama said rebates averaging $100 are coming from insurance companies to 8.5 million Americans. In fact, most of the money is going straight to employers who provide health insurance, not to their workers, who benefit indirectly.

    Obama danced around that reality in remarks that also blamed problems in establishing affordable insurance markets on political opponents, glossing over complex obstacles also faced in states that support the law.

    Just as he did a year ago, Obama made a splashy announcement about rebates that incorporates misleading advertising.”

  66. Oligarchy is what I was looking for. Very muddled brain today.

    Be careful with those founder’s quotes, as they tend to illicit knee jerk insults and links to very angry liberal articles.

  67. I love the Enlightenment and the Founding Fathers who were products of the Enlightenment. So much wisdom and sound thinking.

    Ironically, most in this Group who appeal to them politically…would run from their more liberal approach to theology, religion, philosophy etc.

  68. Steve,

    Apparently you can speak for Andrew Sullivan better than he can for himself. He calls himself a conservative. That’s good enough for me. The 8th Commandment says we’re not supposed to malign others. Food for thought?

    Would love to continue, but got to git to my local socialist libary to do some good book larnin’.

    🙂

  69. Steve said, “As much as I hate the fact that this law has caused so many people to lose work, lose hours, not get hired and spend much much more in insurance premiums (ours have gone up much higher than they were pre-Obamacare) – I am at the point where I think it would be best for this nation to see the full effects of this law.

    It may be the best lesson possible for the future of our nation – and it certainly will end once and for all the lies pushed by one side, and the villification of the other side on this particular issue.”

    I actually think that this is our only hope as a nation. After the hard left gets everything they want and everything turns to crap, people might again start wondering how our nation was supposed to function.

    Hillary 2016!

  70. RB, the founding fathers were the liberals of their day. The conservatives were the monarchists.

  71. I have a friend in Longview, Washington who is going through some heavy trials and would like to attend church. He may also be open to meeting with someone if you happen to be in that area. Please contact me if you know of a church in the area or might be willing to meet with him. Thanks. erunner54@gmail.com

  72. Lutheran, like I said, Sullivan changed a decade ago – Sullivan voted for John Kerry and later Barack Obama. When Republican politics are the topic, he tends to either lean towards the libertarian side of a Ron Paul, or left leaning Republicans like Arnold – neither of whom are conservative.

    I’ve read Sullivan for years – and in fact quoted him as an authority on many occasions right here on this blog (and others) when he has gone on record with his desire to change the ideas of monogamy and marriage as part of his homosexual activism.

    I do not think I am bearing a false witness against Sullivan when saying that he has held very few political positions that could be called “conservative” for at least a decade. I am evaluating his writings, his public stance on the issues, and his voting record.

  73. (this is fairly short so I’ll post it in entirety)

    “She is a political analyst, blogger, columnist and commentator. She is a Democrat who regularly contributes to USA Today, Newsweek, The Daily Beast, Fox News and the Wall Street Journal among other publications. She formerly served under the Clinton administration from 1993-1998 and was appointed Deputy Assistant U.S Trade Representative for Public Affairs.

    In an interview with Focus on the Family, she shares how she converted from atheism to Christianity. She said: “I was not looking to be a Christian. The last thing in the world I wanted to be was a Christian. I had grown up as an Episcopalian, but not evangelical, born again, or any of those kinds of things. It was very high church, kind of mainline, protestant, episcopalian. I did believe in God, but it wasn’t anywhere near what would come to happen to me later in life.

    “When I went away to college, whatever little faith I had, I lost. I ended up graduating from college. I worked in the Clinton administration. All my friends were secular liberals. At this point, I really got even more deeply into an incredibly secular world because now, all my friends were basically atheists, or if they had any kind of spirituality, they were very hostile towards religion, Christianity in particular. So, I really didn’t have any interest in it.

    “I started dating someone who went to Tim Keller’s church, Redeemer Presbyterian in New York City. Out of curiosity, I went with him. But I told him upfront that I would never become a Christian; that it’s never going to happen. After about six or seven months, I began to think that the weight of history is more on the side of what [I was hearing at this church] than not. Tim Keller had made such a strong case, that I began to think it’s not even smart to reject this. It just doesn’t seem like a good intellectual decision.

    “Really, it was like God sort of invaded my life. It was very unwelcome. I didn’t like it. Obviously, I started having a lot of different experiences where I felt God was doing a lot of things in my life. It’s kind of hard to describe, but I did have this moment where the scales just fell off of my eyes, where I was saying, ‘this is just totally true, I don’t even have any doubt.’ …I don’t really feel like I had any courage when I became a Christian, I just gave in. I wasn’t courageous; I didn’t have any choice. I kept trying to not believe but I just couldn’t avoid [accepting Christ]. If I could have avoided it, I would have. There is nothing convenient about it in my life or in the world I live in. It’s not like living in the South where everybody is a Christian. I live in a world where nobody is a believer. But God pursued me.”

    Her name is Kirsten Powers

    http://gospellightminute.wordpress.com/2013/06/02/god-pursued-me-how-kirsten-powers-converted-from-atheism-to-christianity-gospel-light-minute-101/

  74. Steve, I liked that article.

    Now for some straight up nuttiness to get your blood pressure up….read this.

    http://charismanow.com/life/women/9732-why-christians-are-broke?showall=&start=1

  75. You men and ladies are obviously way far ahead of me regarding ability to understand and talk about politics than I am. However, there is one thing I am aware of, this country grew very large in a very short time of existence and became the leader of the world. It also became very much weaker in a much more rapid time period. We no longer hold the best technology or financial certainty than we even did fifty years ago.

    It is obvious when we started a nation UNDER GOD He blessed us and when our government set God apart of our national concern He let us separate from His blessings; and the results are developing before our very eyes.

    I am not the only one to be concerned about this I have heard others mention it also (on the side). When will Christians stand up together and make a stand like our forefathers did in England? ALL nations such as Babylon, Persian, Greece, Rome, the Jews and now America lost their power because they rejected God.

    If I had the power to do so, I would gather ALL Christians in America to insist that our Government returns to its original state of Governing under the right to be Christian, not the right to veto Christianity.

    Pretend christians (small c) want to do what God wants them to do. Real Christians DO what He wants; and isn’t that to do our best, such as a nation (the seed of Abraham), to live according to His ways?

    Christians have an enormous amount of power IF THEY STAND TOGETHER FOR GOD. Why they do not do it is beyond me!!!

    I am in this world/nation but not OF it.

  76. Republicans have ruined this country enuff, definitely don’t want them hypocrites in the Oval. As far as Tim Tebow goes, he’s right where he belongs which is not in the NFL

  77. We have never been a Christian nation, get over that Myth already

  78. Our nation is founded on Elightenment values and ideals, far closer to ideas of philosophy based on a god which is A Great Architect of The Universe than the Evangelical Christian mythos of Jesusland.

  79. Those ideas allow each of us to practice our faith according to our conscience and influence our neighbors to consider the veracity of what we profess without undue external pressures. I cannot think of a better opportunity to leg God truly be God and work in each of us and among us.

    It’s simply the best.

  80. Yeah those liberals huh! I mean George Bush Mr. Republican just endorsed his friends homosexual marriage and Ronnie Reagens wife was a spiritists who consulted mediums, in other words Nancy Reagan practiced witch craft. Keep putting your trust in politicians and see what results. In America it seems that being Christian=Republican according the Pastors andthe institutional church

  81. It doesn’t matter a whit what our “leaders” profess or practice, it matters what each Of us does with the opportunities we cultivate.

  82. “The seed is sown and the harvest is ripe. Salvation is now the only remedy but alas… Send in the reapers.”

    BD, your number 2 rings true to me.

    Truly Prophetic…

  83. A drop of water in the ocean @ # 78,

    You’ve been reading or watching too much David Barton. Our nation was not founded on the Bible or the Christian religion in any sense, even though some of the founders were devout and some were not. It was founded on the humanist principles of the Enlightenment and the Rights of Man apart from any one particular religion.

  84. I’m late to the discussion here but I wanted to jump in because I just found out this week how Obamacare is effecting my insurance and premiums at my place of work. I work for a mid-sized company which is owned by a larger corporation. Every year that I have been in the workplace, my premiums have risen. So the fact that I found out that my premiums will be rising again in 2014 is no surprise. However, the percentage of that rise is larger this year than any other year in the past. When my company was presenting the info for our 2014 benefits, they said there were two reasons for this increase: 1) Company profits that have decreased and, 2) a new fee that comes into play in 2014 through Obamacare. I don’t remember the details on the fee, but do remember that it is something brand new coming into play directly from Obamacare. As for the first reason with decreased company profits, this was not expanded upon in the benefits presentation. But one of the well known reasons in our company for why our company profits have decreased is because of the medical device tax in Obamacare that started this year. So bottom line, the large majority of my record increase in premium is directly related to Obamacare.

    Secondly, our out-of-pocket maximums have jumped dramatically this year and will again in 2014. The singular reason given for this is the company is working ahead of time to avoid being hit by the excise tax that will take place due to Obamacare in 2018. The company needs to avoid providing one of the better health plans available in the market by the time they get to 2018 or else they will be responsible for paying this significantly high tax. So they are scaling back now to make sure they don’t meet the tax threshold. In all my years of work, I never had to worry about the out-of-pocket maximums hurting me badly financially if things were ever to go bad health wise for myself or my family. Now I have to worry. If we were to have a bad health year and would have to pay all the out-of-pocket maximums, my family would be put in significant financial difficulties. And if we would have multiple bad health years, I don’t even want to think about it.

    I found out all this info just this past week. I can see the direct cost of Obamcare to myself and every other employee in my company (around 20,000 when counting the larger corporation). I have heard many similar stories from family, friends, and acquaintances where there health care costs are jumping up even more than before due to Obamacare. Now I think there were some needed good things included in Obamcare to take care of those who were falling through the cracks. But any argument stipulating that Obamacare is not going to be costly to many Americans is a load of you know what.

  85. Solomon Rodriguez wrote at # 79:

    Republicans have ruined this country enuff, definitely don’t want them hypocrites in the Oval.

    There was a Democrat in the oval office who signed the repeal the Glass-Steagle act which prevented Wall Street from gambling with yours and my hard earned cash on main street. The only outrage from evangelicals back then was over his antics with Monica Lewinsky and Cuban cigars. The labels of Democrat & Republican are really meaningless in this discussion because they’re both in on it.

  86. Anyone want to hazard guess as to why we couldn’t have just helped people who needed insurance and not screwed the whole system up for everyone else?

    You know some people like to fuss about welfare, but besides increased taxes, welfare doesn’t really affect everyone in the nation.

    Kevin isn’t the only story like this.

    ACA is bad for small and large businesses.
    It is bad for individuals who are already under healthcare.

    Those who it isn’t as bad for are those who are exempted and that lies in the whims and political favoritism of our elected leaders.

    Regulations are control and that is usually what the govt. wants. More control over your life so that you and everyone else is dependent on them and they become more necessary in your life.

  87. Muff, I didn’t like the way he handled the former Yugoslavia or how he voted in NAFTA after claiming he’d veto it and I’d identify as evangelical.

    And we agree about the essentially meaningless distinction between the parties.

  88. Another point on my important belief that God blesses nations that abide in Him and condemns those who do not, Like Egypt and others I earlier mentioned.

    Why do most people accept “tolerance” of sin but there is a vast growing of NO tolerance of God, while their nation crumbles?

    The answer is to Not believe a non-Christian politician.

    Is there not one on this Christian blog that can say, “Amen”?

    Even if I am wrong, how could any of you call yourself Christian and not believe that if our nation stood up more to His Word we would be more successful and will diminish more if we tolerate sin more than Him?

    The Bible is full of Nations being destroyed because they rejected Him. (or doesn’t anyone believe the Bible anymore?)

    Yes, the nation was not developed to be a Christian Nation but the MOST of the founders were Christian. See: http://www.faithofourfathers.net/

    Christianity and America:

    Last week, I heard it again: That oft-repeated urban legend that we’ve heard so often. This time, to my horror, I heard it from a well-educated pastor: “Our founding fathers were not Christians. They were deists, atheists, and agnostics.”

    Au contraire!

    The pilgrims, as you will recall, were, Christians fleeing Europe in order to escape religious persecution, and they literally began their stay in their new land with the words, “In the name of God, Amen.”

    The pilgrims were followed to New England by the Puritans, who created bible-based commonwealths. Those commonwealths practiced the same sort of representative government as their church covenants. Those governmental covenants and compacts numbered more than 100, and were the foundation for our Constitution.

    New Haven (Connecticut) and Massachusetts were founded by Puritans who wanted to reform the Church of England, who later became known as Congregationalists. Roger Williams founded the colony of Rhode Island based on the principle of freedom of conscience. Pennsylvania was established by William Penn as a Quaker colony. Maryland was a haven for Catholics from Protestant England.

    America was indeed founded by bible-believing Christians and based on Christian principles. When they founded this country, the Founding Fathers envisioned a government that would promote and encourage Christianity.

    All but two of the first 108 universities founded in America were Christian. This includes the first, Harvard, where the student handbook listed this as Rule #1: “Let every student be plainly instructed and earnestly pressed to consider well, the main end of his life and studies is to know God and Jesus Christ, which is eternal life, John 17:3; and therefore to lay Jesus Christ as the only foundation for our children to follow the moral principles of the Ten Commandments.”

    In 1777. Continental Congress voted to spend $300,000 to purchase bibles which were to be distributed throughout the 13 colonies! And in 1782, the United States Congress declared, “The Congress of the United States recommends and approves the Holy Bible for use in all schools.

  89. Well…there was the first two years of Bill Clinton, complete with Democrat House and Senate, that was so unpopular on policy issues with the entire USA (not just evangelicals) that it led to his party getting creamed in the mid-term election in almost unprecedented fashion – giving the GOP control of BOTH House and Senate for the first time in over 40 years.

    Then there was the Bill Clinton of his last six years. The tax cutting, war waging, gay marriage denying, pump the stock market to the roof, Bill Clinton.

    Sort of how when many talk about the beliefs at the “founding” of the nation they seem to forget each state had a constitution and the founders were very clear that except in very specific issues ALL the rest of government would reside in those states. Those should be read and referenced in any discussion about religious beliefs at the time of the “founding”

  90. Drop,
    People that deny the Christian influence on the Nation are in a fantasy world.
    At the same time, to say that everything the Founding Fathers did was explicitly Christian is also not true.
    Our nation is a mix of good and bad, throughout it’s history, much like any other nation.

    I will say one thing though, the way our leaders take us usually influences many in the nations behavior, despite what people may say.
    This was noted in the OT and is true also today.
    Leaders have influence.

  91. To Derek Thornton @ # 93 September 28, 2013 at 8:32 pm,

    Amen to what you stated.

    I would just add to where you state, “Our nation is a mix of good and bad, throughout it’s history, much like any other nation.” What would possibly be “bad” about Christian Politicians? They do not have to enforce their religion and they would never cause any harm to non-christians.

  92. “What would possibly be “bad” about Christian Politicians? They do not have to enforce their religion and they would never cause any harm to non-christians.”

    Somebody please pass the barf bag.

  93. “those of you who follow the business news know that actually large corps are drowning in cash. They have tons of profits – yet the economy struggles on.”

    My understanding of the evangelical religion as practiced in american, this is holy and God honoring. They should hoard their cash and make sure that the ceo’s and higher ups get big bonuses. If you get sick and you dont have money you should die and do the world a favor. If you get sick an do have money you should live as long as you have money the second you dont, die. God hates deadbeats, if you cant feed yourself you should starve as hunger is a great motivator to become an entrepreneur and make major bank, if you dont, die. Personally I went through several medical issues and did not call an ambulance, because it cost to much money. I made it to the hospital and you fine people prayed for me, it helped. I will not go to an emergency room, I will die first because it would bankrupt me and I will not die in debt. I would consider that the unpardonable sin. I know this is a caricature and I find myself agreeing with MLD which made me go take my blood pressure to make sure I was not sick.

    As I said in the past, being sick, being elderly, not having money are crimes in this country, and they are just that you do not get a lawyer or any rights.

  94. Crashing the gov is a good political move, which totally justifies it and always will. It will hurt people, which is completely irrelevant and should be. I guarantee someone will make bank and that is holy and God ordained. I may be off but I dont get that.

  95. Derek that is a very sad article I know most, almost all Christians I know are not money hungry greedy people. I find them to be the most giving, including the Charismatics, Catholics, etc. I know my usual shtick is focusing on the opposite but I think people latch onto this doctrine because they want to get money to do good. They get caught up in the emotion of it and from what I have observed most of them wish to do good with what God may give them. It is sad that is used to manipulate them at times. Hope that makes sense.

  96. Captain Kevin @ #95

    Very serious question,

    Why in the world do you say, “Somebody please pass the barf bag.”, regarding my way of knowing what a true Christian would be like as a politician? How can you (or anyone else) claim to be a Christian and not believe that people who truly stand up for the Christian character would do anything to harm anyone? If a person does not believe in Christianity they obviously do not believe in Christ. If this is my last comment here I want to announce that I emphatically believe in Christ/Jesus and His followers (Christians). I will continue to pray for those who do not follow Him.

  97. “latch onto this doctrine because they want to get money to do good”

    Hey brian, I was glad to see that you think the best of these Christians who fall for this.
    I myself hate that it the whole “prosperity gospel” even exists, but oh well.

    I have heard some stories from people that attend smaller churches that follow this that have had the church “claim” ,through corporate prayer, brand new cars for their members.
    I see no way that having a new car does good for my neighbor. Instead it does mainly for my wants.
    Not broad brushing them, just showing how this goes a lot of times. It seems to be mostly about the persons wants.

  98. brian said, “My understanding of the evangelical religion as practiced in american, this is holy and God honoring. ”

    To bad that your understanding is totally ripped from reality. Not much different than when Ahmadinejad says “My understanding of the holocaust is…”

  99. OK, I am leaving to go to church … but I need to know.

    Can a Christian rejoice in the firing of a local University football coach or do I need to include that in this mornings confession?

  100. Lets be real and say it like it is: this country was founded on rebellion which the bible calls witchcraft. To pretend there was nobility in that is living in fantasy land. The fruits of rebellion were the decimatii of a people that were already here and the enslavement of another people from another land.

  101. Hey MLD,

    I misspelled another word, giving you a heads up to have fun with that 🙂

    Seriously tho, regardless of our history I know that we as Christians are to submit to our governing authorities and also honor the King 1 Peter ch:2. I got no issue with this unless of course they start forbidding us to gather and preach the word but even then our protest is peaceful and we also meet underground. I have been guilty as hell in blasting Obama and other Presidents for that matter but the bible is clear we are to honor them and pray for them rather than put them down. Seems like many evangelicals are good about that when a Republican is in office but not so much a Democrat. On the other hand Christians had a right to call out Clinton for his sexcapades just like John the Baptist called out Herod.

  102. Reading 1 Peter ch:2 verse 18 is a conviction on how our attitudes should be to our employer. I’m guilty of wanting to do things my way sometimes at work because I think I know better but the bible tells me I am submit with all fear to my boss even when she is harsh. I have a great boss by the way as she has had my back on numerous occasions.

  103. To me it is all about balance in how I view my country. I believe we are to respect the laws and law enforcement, governing officials etc. I would not go to war for my country as a concientious objector. However I give respect and honor to those that do. I never see the apostles or Jesus telling soldiers to leave their post. This countries history is shady but so is every other country’s. Its just unrepentant man being man. To me as Christians we aren’t to be patriotic as we are citizens of Heaven however we are also not to be rebellious and haters of our country. We are just pilgrims passing thru, sojourners in this foreign land. We are not to overthrow the government under any circumstances no matter how bad it gets as God put them in place and when we rebel against the government we rebel against him. That’s why I love the bible there is so much balance to it. I don’t vote but I can see why a Christian would want to vote for issues lile abortion and homosexual marriage. Its just that Republicans have held a carrot over christians heads and manipulated them to no end. We are to be about Kingdom business not that of the worlds. The mission is clear to make disciples of all nations and to preach the gospel not make republicans and conservatives of all nations. I am disturbed that many Christians listen to and like guys like Rush Limbaugh and Sean Hannity. These men show no love to those less fortunate and I’m afraid that has affected those believers that listen to them. On Christian radio here in L.A. you often here more about politics than you do about the gospel. That is a shame as no matter who we have in office or what laws change to be a Christian you must be born again and your politics wont save you.

  104. Derek,

    Your right, Christian principles had a big influence on this country’s laws however we were not founded asa christian country because if we were there would not be freedom of Religion as we would not allow mosques or buddhist temples. I don’t think Jesus even wanted countries to be Christian in the sense of a theocracy, he knew that would never happen until his second coming.

  105. This Pastor in Eugene, OR proclaims, “Church sucks!”

    Changes up worship format to include music from Katy Perry, Maroon 5, etc.

    http://www.joy105.com/a-new-church-with-the-theme-church-sucks-and-katy-perry-music-has-some-folks-mad/

  106. There is a church here that does a similar thing, Scott. Baffles me. All the “worship” music is secular. Coldplay, etc. They see themselves as mainly there for non-believers who are seeking something…but I just don’t get it. I know one person who goes there and have run into a few folks from the church…nice folks, but lacking in depth in my opinion. Haven’t had an extended conversation. The services are very heavy on entertainment…focused on music and skits.

  107. Vikings finally win one, we were all quiet here at our bbq until that last play, that’s what happens when ur team keeps choking 4th qtr leads.

  108. “How can you (or anyone else) claim to be a Christian and not believe that people who truly stand up for the Christian character would do anything to harm anyone?”

    Drop of Water,
    Perhaps my reaction was a bit strong, and for that I apologize. It’s just that in 33 years of being a believer in Jesus, I’ve never witnessed this ideal of which you speak. Power has corrupted many a Christian leader.

    Anybody here ever hear of a guy named Skip Heitzig? Or perhaps Bob Grenier?

  109. Two words. DENVER BRONCOS.

  110. Hi, MLD —

    Yeah, I saw that article.

    This ACA is gonna shake a lot of things up — for the better.

    The piece you linked to says quoted an expert saying that 1.5 million people will start their own businesses. That will help our economy,.Because they’ll no longer be tethered to their employer’s healthcare. I think that’s really exciting. That entrepreneurial energy will help our economy

    Besides, employer-based health care is a historical anomaly. Every year (well before ACA), at least a percentage point fewer employers even offered it.

    The only reason it got started is that after WWII, the gov’t froze salaries Since employers couldn’t offer raises, they started offering health care to higher-ups. After that, it trickled down.

    It’s a broken system that needs fixing. The ACA is a step in the right direction. People working crummy jobs for crummy bosses with no HC will have another option.

    And isn’t that what we’re all about — choice?

  111. #103
    That is the truth of the matter. Witchcraft and rebellion are equal. Therefore the foundation is unstable and will end as it has begun…Reality.

  112. I really think the answer to our country solving its problems, especially poverty, is to elect the lady who wrote this article for CharismaNews. After all, she uses the word poverty 36 times. She must be anointed or something.

    Here’s my favorite quote:

    “Still, their lights were often turned off, and their furniture had an odor that I’d smelled on her clothing. I am convinced that scent is related to the spirit of poverty.”

    http://www.charismamag.com/site-archives/1387-slw-finance/debt/9732-cast-out-the-spirit-of-poverty

  113. Wait…I spoke in error.

    She was only writing about Christians.

    Guess the rest of our pagan society has no hope.

    Sigh.

    🙂

  114. G said, “Our nation is founded on Elightenment values and ideals, far closer to ideas of philosophy based on a god which is A Great Architect of The Universe than the Evangelical Christian mythos of Jesusland.”

    Yup. Verifiably true.

  115. Just a couple of normal middle class folks….

    “Claudia and Joseph Schulz, the Phoenix couple who campaigned for health care reform in red-state Arizona… “

  116. So Jim, let me ask – you have been campaigning also on this – does that relegate you to anything less than “a normal middle class folk”?

  117. MLD – I read the article and found this:

    On Tuesday, they plan to sign up for the new exchanges in Arizona, where five insurers have filed to offer care. Based on their projected $150,000 income, plus family size, the Schulzes may pay about $1,250 a month in premiums for a silver plan, or more for the top-tier platinum plan they favor, according to a calculator offered by the Berkeley labor center. At 544 percent of the federal poverty level, that’s well out of range for any government subsidies.

    The care will start Jan. 1. Until then, the Schulzes figure they’ll pay about $1,600 a month for COBRA benefits to extend their insurance. That’s all a big bite out of the family’s budget, far more than the $420 a month they’ve been paying.
    ———————————————————————
    So these normal middle class folk that earn 150,000 a year are going from 420 to 1250 a month and THAT is still not for the coverage they really want which would cost even more. And whereas the $420 a month was what in fact they were paying, these quotes come with a “may” attached to them since nobody actually knows what it is going to cost yet.

  118. So far every article that tries to put lipstick on this pig tries to act prophetic. Nothing but promises about the future. Meanwhile people are starting to get real notices, real cancellations, real rate increases, real terminations, real hour cutbacks. Talked to a couple more such people today at church.

    And more are on the way. We certainly see why this wonderful law to help so many signed way back in 2010 was not set to kick in until now – can you imagine all these people getting these notices LAST year, just a few weeks away from Obama’s reelection vote in November?

    I remember how for weeks as our military combed Iraq for WMDs we kept being promised that they would show up, they were hidden but they will show up. Eventually, reality finally kicked in, the truth revealed, and those promises died – along with the reputations of those making them.

    So today we keep hearing promises that savings and benefits will eventually show up. Just keep the faith, they’re coming. But more and more people in reality are going to find out otherwise. At some point the promises will show themselves to be hollow.

    I’m thrilled that someone making 150,000 is happy that they get to pay almost $1000 more a month for their insurance in exchange for somehow being able to look for other jobs which apparently they felt unable to do until Obama gave them the green light with this bill.

    But somehow I think such 150,000 a year couples may be in the minority

  119. Yeah,
    Paying more for health care makes people happy.
    Keep finding these alternate universe people and interviewing them for us NBC.

    This is all part of NBC’s week long objective reporting on the benefits of Obamacare.
    Wait a minute, maybe I ought to be calling that reporting with an objective instead.

    Even when they try to report supposedly good news on this law, the truth leaks out.

  120. Steve and Derek – I think you missed the point that even middle class people can find a way yo make ACA work for them.

    I wasn’t proposing a good or bad – just that not everyone sees it with the ‘stink eye’

    Look in the 15 yrs my wife and I were self employed we paid $1,4000 / month for just medical insurance.

    But no one wants to address the real problem with medical care costs – you guys have not once addressed the fat cat doctors, medical device suppliers or the giant pharmaceuticals who in the end are probably less regulated than my business.

    And don’t even get me going on the insurance companies – when Steve spoke of cash rich companies, well there is the poster boy industry.

  121. Here is what I am saying – we were on our own group rate / plan as self employed. Our rates went from $600 in 2007 to $1,4000 in 2011.

    No Obama Care – just insurance rip off

  122. MLD, My campaigning is limited to yakking on this blog and talking to my neighbors. I don’t think NBC will come calling anytime soon. Your paid insurance premiums were a choice you made. ACA takes away that choice. Join up or pay a new tax is the new “choice”.

    America-land of the free….

  123. Jim,
    What’s the difference? – you pay the tax right now for the uninsured. Go to a county hospital ER – who do you think is footing the bill? You & me. I think you are a bit naive.

    Let me ask this – the 30 yr old who “chooses” to not buy insurance – because as we know, all 30 yr old are invincible – should he need to sign a yearly waiver that he pays upfront for emergency care or he gets none and gets sent to the curb? I don’t want the tax increase to cover his “freebie” … do you?

  124. Okay Jim, so then just join up or pay your tax. Its that simple, whining about it will just drive you nuts. OBama care doesn’t change the fact that we are still a free country. With that lets focus on spreading the gospel and realize that this may just be a tip of the iceberg with more hardships to come. Help us to rejoice in whatever inconveinences that may come our way and focus on his Kingdom not this one on earth. Our trust shouldn’t be in our country anyways. We are to rejoice in our suffering altho I would hardly call Obama care a tool of suffering.

  125. America-land of the free….

    Yes, but not “America-land of the freebie….” or perhaps you do think that You Jim do not need to buy insurance (per the founding fathers) but you should get all the benefits of a medical system.

  126. Just as NBC and other media outlets act as a buffer for the current admin so did FOX for Bush.I’m not buying the whole “were victims” from republicans and conservatives

  127. I think many Christians have failed to come to terms with the fact that we are never going to return to the “good ol days”, the more things change the more they stay the same. Even the bible says that we are unwise if we say things were better in the days of old. Its a new era and no amount of pining for Leave it to Beaver will change that.

  128. MLD,

    The singular goal of obamacare is the subsidies. This is an expansion of the dems great society, which was an expansion of the dems new deal. Take from the producers to “help the less fortunate”, thereby creating a permanent dependent class.

    You are mistaken if you think the uninsured middle class reaps all the benefits of a medical system.

  129. I didn’t say anything about the ‘uninsured’ middle class.

    Those same folks you call “the less fortunate”, are already getting free medical care … on your dime.

    Let me try to ask it this way, since you get as slippery as a bar of soap.

    As a responsible American why do you advocate people be allowed to go without insurance? You didn’t answer my previous question – if a person ‘chooses’ to not buy insurance – do you not agree that he ‘choice’ should also allow him to die at the entrance to the hospital he cannot afford to pay for – isn’t that the American way as you see it?

  130. “…Our rates went from $600 in 2007 to $1,4000 in 2011.”

    Not an insurance rip-off at all. These companies provide insurance for one reason, to make money.

    The insurance companies are almost the best deal in the world, they are guaranteed a profit and when the Doctors and Lawyers increase their fees they raise what you and I have to pay. Which brings us to the real reason medical care costs so much, it’s an insurance based system. Does anyone really think we would have all these procedures which cost tens of thousands of dollars without insurance companies?

    If all of us had to pay directly out of our pockets our health care costs then many things would change.

    1. Doctors would not be as high paid as they are today.
    2. We would not jump into our cars every time johnny coughed and threatened to keep a parent from their work.
    3. More people would have major health issues and die sooner.
    4. and so much more.

    …but our taxes would be lower.

    The problem is Obama Care will not lower health costs one bit and not because of the Government involvement,, but because it is the economics of any insurance care system.

    Now why did your rates go up? Because you and I share the costs of all those others who actually use their insurance.

  131. Yes! A politics thread on the PhxP!!!

    Wait, no…this sucks.

  132. I’m sorry, I did not equate 30 year olds with the poor. My adult children are neither poor nor uninsured. My bad.

    The American way is the federal govt stays out of these matters, as they are local issues.

    Stop the die at the hospital entrance BS. From comment #1:

    “Since we all know that all Dems are unborn baby killers and Reps are after birth baby killers and libertarians want everyone to use heroin and dance naked in the streets, we did a great job last week here, broad brushing our political “enemies”.”

  133. Josh, it’s open blogging. This has traction because people love it when someone’s wrong on the internet. It will die when a new post goes up, so the usual suspects will need to quickly escalate the hype and start judging motives and name calling.

  134. I prefer to judge motives and name call in reference to obscure theology.

  135. Josh, I’m sure have an opportunity soon. On this thread, you could throw in with Solomon and imply that the politically active aren’t focused on His Kingdom.

  136. “Stop the die at the hospital entrance BS. From comment #1:”

    Jim, you missed my point. Perhaps I am saying that if you ‘choose’ – remember ‘choose’ is a key word – not to buy insurance then perhaps you should die at the ER entrance if you cannot afford the services. isn’t that part of the ‘choice’ you make.

    If I choose not to buy a car, that does not give me the right to steal someone else’s car because I have a need.

    Are not people who ‘choose’ to not buy insurance stealing from me if they partake of county paid services?

  137. Good idea. In that case…

    I’m glad this world is not my home.

  138. You want a piece of me CK ?
    🙂

  139. MLD, the untaxed have always benefited from the the revenue generated by the taxed. Public roads are a good example. The problem is that the cure (great society) killed the patient. ACA is yet another job killer, which will lower the tax base.

  140. Jim, my homeland has streets of Gold. Those are the only public streets we should concern ourselves with.

  141. So, since we want to be Europe, the solution will be to raise taxes on the rich. Why not penalize success? A fair system would be a flat tax across the board, but you can’t buy votes with that. Free stuff is a stronger party platform. Ask LBJ.

  142. Josh, I can multitask. I have grandkids that will grow up in this country, and will suffer the effects of our 17 trillion dollar federal credit card. You’re free to do as you please.

  143. The gift of Salvation is free to all who believe.

  144. So you like free stuff when it is offered to you, but not when it is offered to people not like you?

  145. Just an observation from someone with over 20 years in the life and property-casualty insurance world that personally did NOT sell health insurance for almost all of those years.

    I watched company after company STOP selling health insurance the last two decades. The marketplace used to be much larger but I guess these companies got so tired of making so much money that they wanted to give their bankers a break from having to count so much and thus pulled out of their lucrative business.

    Because that’s what greedy profitable business do all the time in the USA, right? STOP selling their profitable lines. Sure MLD

    And of course, many of the companies that remain are mutuals, not for-profits (That means they are owned by their policyholders – and any profits remain with them).

    By the way, the reason I chose not to sell health insurance is because it was so complicated with government regulation, and was so constantly changing, that it would take someone as their fulltime job to know it well enough to do a good job by the client (and not get sued). So even though I would handle someone’s auto, home, life – if they called about health insurance – I just let the sale pass on.

    I appreciate the clarity from MLD though. He wants the government to insure him, not the marketplace. Fair enough.

    Frankly, if Obama and the Democrats were just upfront about this at the start (and wrote Obamacare and voted that way), life would be easier today. But they learned their lessons from the Hillarycare debacle.

    Wait until they need to pass legislation (like was written into Hillarycare before it died) that makes it a crime to practice medical care outside the government system. No more just giving a guy $100 for a visit and some of his time – with no paperwork. (Except I’m sure Congress and their rich friends will find a way to waiver themselves from that too)

  146. Josh,

    I don’t want free stuff from the govt. I qualified for $1900 a month in social security disability back in 2000. Added to another passive income stream that I receive, I could have completely retired in 2000 at age 41 making $45,600 a year. I choose to work.

  147. You can’t do enough good works to earn your salvation Jim.

  148. Josh, who do you think you’re talking to? If I went on a works salvation rant, you’d call me antinomian.

  149. Steve,

    I think single payer is the end game.

  150. YOu do realize I’m just playing along with your # 141? Right? 🙂

  151. Josh, still recovering from a neck treatment, so half my brain is tied behind my back. I obviously totally missed your train. Thanks for stopping me from making a complete ass out of myself, instead of just an ass….

  152. All good Jim…just passing time til Things I think 🙂

  153. Lute, I wanna see more polls whose respondents are 1/4 republicans. Shocking results…

  154. Steve,
    I don’t want the government to insure me at all. My point was that my insurance more than doubled in a 5 yr period with no Obamacare. So when we speak about increases why are you blaming Obamacare?

    I think I took a pretty good non Obama shot.

    I have said several times, I am not fond of Obamacare and think we would be better off to have solved the smaller problem vs a giant one. You and Jim make it sound like the industry was problem free.

    Just an FYI – I don’t think anyone works in a more regulated business than I do. When I initiate a loan, I must send out a disclosure package to the borrower that consists of 85 pages, of which they must sign most. Everytime I change something on the loan I must redisclose to the borrower – even though he may have initiated the changes.

    I looked at one disclosure the other day and it disclosed that we would be asking for information on another disclosure. How is that, a disclosure to disclose that we need to disclose.

  155. MLD,

    Don’t recall stating I was a fan of the ins industry. Personally, I hate it.

    You know what I believe. Govt must shrink and not expand. Not one inch, not one more dime for anything. We are broke. 60% cuts, across the board. We are a strong, smart nation of people who will figure out how to manage without massive govt intervention in everything.

  156. Josh 🙂

  157. I got pwnd by Josh. 🙂

  158. Not owned…poked with a stick maybe. Just a little 🙂

  159. I wonder if Michael is thinking today?

  160. Jim,
    I am not for expanding government. I have long been an advocate that if a new program is devloped , one of equal value must be defunded. But yous want to make like government involvement in health care is something new. The government is already heavily involved with Medicare and the VA.

    So you can’t toot “we can’t let government get involved in the health care industry … they are there.

  161. Jim,

    Not following your “logic.” You want more Repubs. to be represented in the Forbes(“capitalist tool” :)) poll? Normally polls are representative of the larger population.

    You do realize, too, that Repubs/liberts are in the minority? There are significantly more Dems., not to mention independents.

  162. Lute…numbers are closer than you think. Do your homework.

    MLD-I’m discussing the one more inch. I’m well aware of the govt’s over-involvement in everything. That was sort of my point in trying to discuss the proper role of govt, which just isn’t gonna happen.

  163. “An average of 47% of Americans identified as Democrats or said they were independents who leaned Democratic in 2012, compared with 42% who identified as or leaned Republican. That re-establishes a Democratic edge in party affiliation after the two parties were essentially tied in 2010 and 2011.”

    Jim,

    The divide isn’t as strong as I said.

    But 5 percentage points is HUGE.

    The only way Repubs. can stay competitive is to continue their gerrymandering. They’re getting next-to-zero traction with minority groups. What a shock. Besides, there aren’t any normal Repubs. like Gerry Ford or even Bush senior, left. With this group of nitwits, even Bush Jr. would be seen as a liberal!

    Repubs. will continue to use voter ID laws to disenfranchise these folks.

    Spending Koch Brothers $ isn’t working. Barack Obama won by almost 6 million votes in 2012 despite their efforts.

    http://www.gallup.com/poll/159740/democrats-establish-lead-party-affiliation.aspx

  164. “Repubs. will continue to use voter ID laws to disenfranchise these folks.”

    I certainly don’t consider myself a Republican…they all stink to me…however,

    I always thought the ID laws were there to make sure that only those who were American citizens voted. I thought that was the law.

    While I’m on my soap box, another pet peeve:

    It’s a crazy world when a person who gets his car tested, pays to get his car licensed, passes his driving test and pays the fee to get his drivers license, then when has a moving violation, he is ticketed and expected to pay the fine and take the points on his license. Yet, an undocumented person is let go because it’s just too much trouble to do anything and no one wants to be accused of being racist or “disenfranchising” anyone. The same person gets free medical care whist the tax payer is getting an increase in his/her insurance premiums.

    Now, I don’t blame any person from a poor country coming over here (even illegally) and trying to make a living for his/her family. I just think everyone should live by the same rules and have the same government “perks.” (medical coverage)

  165. The only way Repubs. can stay competitive is to continue their gerrymandering
    —————————————————-
    Yeah, they’re the only ones who do that. Good grief.

    You can’t gerrymander Senate races and right now all the predictions about the 2014 Senate races have the Republicans picking up 2-3 seats right out of the gate due to the retirements in West Virginia, South Dakota, and Montana. So that means seats like Arkansas, Louisiana, North Carolina and Alaska all pretty much need to stay blue or the Republicans will win control of the Senate.

    And this is why Reid does not want those Senators to have to make tough votes on the record.

    And this is also why just as it was foolish to think in 2004 that the Democrat party was doomed to perpetual minority status, so it is to think the reverse today of the Republicans.

    However, to be clear where I stand. I hope the GOP as it stands today crashes and burns and a new party led by guys like Cruz, Lee and Rubio (and lots of House guys that have been elected the last 2 cycles) arises from the ashes to replace it – even if it means the Democrats win the next 20 years worth of elections while the transition takes place.

  166. ‘However, to be clear where I stand. I hope the GOP as it stands today crashes and burns and a new party led by guys like Cruz, Lee and Rubio (and lots of House guys that have been elected the last 2 cycles) arises from the ashes to replace it – even if it means the Democrats win the next 20 years worth of elections while the transition takes place.’

    Steve,

    Now, there’s something we totally agree on.

    Your wish is totally my wish, too.

  167. I agree with 177 as well. I’d add Rand and Justin Amash in the house, but understand why many would not.

    I think that Dems might be surprised how disgusted many conservatives are with the GOP. The gallup poll referenced above bears witness to this. If independents could vote in primaries in Florida, I’d be one.

  168. Lute-your 179 is the free market in action. I knew you were a libertarian. 🙂

  169. Dang, Jim. Thought I was under the radar!

    🙂

  170. #177

    Jim,

    Yeah. I wonder if conservatives/libertarians have a similar ambiguous relationship with the Republican party as do many progressives with the Dems.

    Maybe we’re the ones trying to keep ’em on principle. 🙂

    Also — the Repubs. are even losing big business, from some stuff I’ve read. That’s pretty serious, IMHO. They’ve traditionally been huge supporters.

  171. MLD – if I had the power I would campaign on a wealth tax, which would make the Liberal Democrats like Warren Buffet show their hypocrisy once and for all. (and many in the GOP would scream too but at least they aren’t the ones like the left who claims to care for the poor while encouraging the policies that keep them that way.)

    It would basically eliminate all taxes for the poor and even lower middle class. ALL taxes including payroll, interest/capital gains, income. Maybe up to $40-50,000 a year. Maybe higher.

    Then it would hit everyone with a net worth above a certain very comfortable figure – let’s say 300 million or so – with a 25% wealth tax to both fund the government and reduce the debt. This is annual. So all those lefty billionaires (and the Koch brothers too of course) would each cough up a tidy sum.

    Ever look at the richest americans list. You need over 1.3 billion to crack #400. I’m sure there are thousands with a net worth between 300 million and 1.3 billion. (And the rich have only been getting richer under the Obama Administration)

    Example. Spielberg is worth about 3.3 billion. His first 300 million is exempt, but then he pays 25% of the other 3 billion – or 750 million dollars. How many lower income people could go off the tax rolls without a penny lost to the Treasury. And that is just one guy’s example – and really not even the top (150 guys have more wealth than Spielberg)

    Next year, after his remaining 2.5 billion has earned him another 200 million or so that year, he will again get to exclude the first 300 million and get taxed on the 2.4 billion left. So another 600 million to the Treasury. We could eventually lower and maybe eliminate this tax after some years once we got our house in order – but that is the way to do it.

    So yeah, increase the taxes..THAT way…and then cut spending while you are at it. Those rich folks in D.C. might have incentive to cut spending if they (and their puppet masters) knew their wealth tax would disappear more quickly.

    But don’t allow multi-millionaire congressmen (or spouses of..) to keep raising marginal rates and payroll rates and interest/capital gain rates on people trying to actually build a little income and savings for themselves – in order to keep the oligarchy class intact.

  172. I always thought the most fair way to balance the budget or eliminate the debt would as I said – half in raising taxes and half in spending cuts.

    To make it fair, let the dems determine where the taxes come from – who get’s taxed what and let the GOP determine which programs get cut.

    That way each party gets to do what they have been dying to do.

  173. Funny,
    The House, run by Repubs, have been passing bills to fund the government. Right now with just a one year delay on ACA implementation.
    Seems to be the Senate, run by Dems, who keep turning down funding the government.
    But, I guess the media only ever blames one party for everything.

  174. Ah, the Affordable Care Act.
    Defining “affordable” in ways you never dreamed of.

  175. My # 147 is a classic. The fact that Jim bought it adds to the beauty:)

  176. To Derek’s 191 – I think this is just giving companies cover to do what they have been wanting to do – cut hours to avoid paying healthcare – Obama or no Obama … but now they don’t look like such bad guys

  177. MLD,

    Three very large employers I worked for started doing this before Obamacare was thought of…I agree.

  178. MLD said, “I always thought the most fair way to balance the budget or eliminate the debt would as I said – half in raising taxes and half in spending cuts.

    To make it fair, let the dems determine where the taxes come from – who get’s taxed what and let the GOP determine which programs get cut.

    That way each party gets to do what they have been dying to do.”

    LOL, I actually like that a lot.

  179. Perhaps we should just get rid od employer paid health insurance – heck, they don’t pay for my car insurance.

    Why not have the grocery stores pay our insurance. Each time we shop we get healthcare credits.

  180. MLD #192

    That’s the truth.

  181. MLD,

    I’ve done some writing in the HR area.

    Employer-based health care is dying — not literally, but on its way out.

    Employers can’t keep paying for it when the insurance companies keep jacking up the rates by double digits every year. Ain’t gonna happen.

    Employer coverage started dropping several years ago, well before the healthcare debate. It’s dropping about a percentage point a year.

    It probably was never realistic to expect employers to be the ones to make it available anyway.

    I posted this earlier, but employer based health care was an anomaly. After WWII, companies couldn’t give raises. So some started offering health care to higher ups as an incentive to stay with them. By mid-1950s it was codified into law.

    Since you can probably count on one hand the number of businesses that value employee loyalty anymore, that’s another reason for them not to continue offering it.

  182. MLD’s 192 still blames ACA for people losing income.

    Michael,
    I am glad this law is helping you, but to just blow off what is happening right now just makes light of people’s plights and of what is obviously happening in a runaway fashion right now.

    Do people on here actually do what people accuse conservatives of doing?
    Only read articles that agree with what you want to hear.

    I actually see stuff going on here with actual people that accords with some of the worst prophecies of what would happen with implementation of this law.

    I know people that can’t afford their healthcare increasing from $41 now to $119 a month at an ACA exchange and that is just for single people.

    #195 Then lobby Congress…good luck with that! The people have spoken and they want ACA is the gist of what you have been saying on here.

  183. Lutheran,
    To be fair, the employees are no more loyal to the company than the company is to the employee.

  184. I reiterate what I asked earlier in this thread.

    Anyone want to hazard guess as to why we couldn’t have just helped people who needed insurance and not screwed the whole system up for everyone else?

  185. Derek – simple answer. Because no one would compromise to make a deal work. The Dems are just as guilty as the GOP.

    Time for me to clock out and go home – made a buck and got a little healthcare today.

  186. Derek,

    I have no way of knowing if this will help me or not.
    We can’t sign up in Oregon until tomorrow and until then I don’t know if this will help or not.
    I’m not blowing anything off, but I certainly can match your anecdotal evidence that this bill is responsible for these cuts with anecdotal evidence that Verizon and Wells Fargo were already doing this before the law passed.
    Both of those companies were having record setting profits when they did so.

  187. This law is the fruit of giant regulatory legislation, pieced together, not read and passed so that we could find out what was in it.
    The worst part is that five years later and we are still learning what was in it.

    Legislation from the government should be simple, short and easy to understand or it is usually harmful.

    Night.
    Calling it quits on this thread.

  188. MLD #199

    Yes…but the employers were the ones who change the rules of the game, IMHO.

    When my dad, a WWII vet, was working, there was an unspoken agreement that you’d give your employer your best efforts over time which included your loyalty. In return, the company would hire you long term and not bag you — you’d stay around long enough for a pension when you retired.

    I was around when the rules changed. Employers started thinking short term and they got greedy.

    It’s been ugly and downhill ever since.

  189. I am not mad at you, it is the whole meme of blaming business that gets me riled up.
    We can’t blame everything on business.
    I have never been employed by a poor person.
    To continually blame people that make money for things they do because the government creates conditions that force them to do things that they do, is not fair.
    What laws and regulations are also at fault for creating conditions that are inimical to business in the years before this law?
    When people try to show this for former laws or the ACA, it seems that it always gets turned around on business people.
    We should hold them accountable, but they are not the cause of all the ills in this country.
    Both parties are guilty of a lot also.

  190. Derek,

    We are all shaped by personal experience.
    I’ve worked for two of the biggest banks in the country and the largest cell company in the country.
    All three were making money hand over fist and were as ruthless toward employees as possible.
    I’ve worked for one privately held company that was the exact opposite.

  191. MLD said, “Derek – simple answer. Because no one would compromise to make a deal work. The Dems are just as guilty as the GOP.”

    Yup, that about sums it up.

  192. MLD’s #201
    Buzzzzzzzzz….wrong answer!

    At the time the ACA was created , the Dems controlled both houses and the Executive, no compromise was needed.
    Maybe next time you can win the kewpie doll.

  193. Derek, that is the entire problem in a nutshell – the bullies felt no need to work a deal. They just pushed through their one dimensional plan.

    I am a lot bigger and stronger than my wife (but she is cuter). There is no reason for me to ever negotiate or compromise with her. But if I didn’t, there would be trouble in paradise.

    Let me tell you, politically speaking, there is trouble in paradise and both parties are responsible – they should have considered the options others offered.

    But the GOP used to do the same thing when they had the power.

    See, I can take shots at both sides and see the fault that each has. You and a few others here want to just walk lock step … in fact if you had your choice and the power you would do just like the Dems and wipe it out completely.

  194. Man, I hope that one day I’ll be as reasonable as MLD thinks he is. I think it pretty obvious that the conservatives here have been pretty hard on the GOP.

    Josh, quit dancing in the end zone 🙂

  195. Yeah MLD, lock step…right.
    Guess that is why the only Congressman in my state that I thanked for voting for the Amash Amendment was a Democrat. He wasn’t even my representative.

    Guess being against the ACA=being for the Republicans on every other matter
    .
    I do find myself agreeing with them on some things, but I have significant differences with them elsewhere. Like NSA spying and their “Not-as-big as Democrats” government spending.
    The problem with most Republicans is they cave in on most things and don’t really stand up significantly as a whole for the things they say they stand for.
    This is why they are losing support.
    See, the Democrats usually present a unified front. They stand up even if what they are standing for is wrong, like abortion.

  196. “Guess being against the ACA=being for the Republicans on every other matter”

    Well, you seem to point to Dems that way. Playing the abortion card in this conversation is like interjecting Hitler – a little below the belt.

  197. But look at the good news. Two generals got fired in Afghanistan for misdeeds and Lane Kiffen got fired at USC.

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