Thursday, June 11, 2009


The GOPer's favorite spin doctor Frank Luntz plots DOA for health care reform. Freshman Senator Merkley calls him out on the floor. We need more Senators like him.

Political cartoon of the day: What irony?

Blog post title of the day: From This Day, Apes Will Go Ericshit. Prime snark in that post. Go read it.

John Cole got a dog to keep Tunch company. She looks like a real sweetie.

And via Avedon who as always has a bunch of links worth reading, a living tree chair.

[More posts daily at The Detroit News]

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Anonymous sandbun said...

Ok, I'm going to go ahead and ask you here since you're not responding as much on DetNews anymore. I don't blame you, there is a lot of venom out there for you. And I'm not trying to harass you, just looking for someone who supports government health care to explain this to me. Given the government's track record the last number of years - the mishandling of not one but two wars, their handling of the economy, their handling of the bailouts, including the billions given to GM and Chrysler just to push back bankruptcy a couple months, their handling of international relations, pretty much their handling of every major thing they're supposed to do, what on earth makes you want them to try to fix health care? Isn't this the same logic that gave the banks billions - "You've proven you don't know how to manage billions of dollars, here's billions more." "You've proven you don't know how to manage any of the things we put you in charge of, here's another thing you can manage" PLUS "You've proven you don't really work Americans but for big corporations (see Dick Durbin statement), here's a multi billion dollar system controlled by corporations for you to 'fix'".

Not to mention (it never made sense to me that this is how that phrase is used, I am specifically bringing this up so that you will respond to it) you want them to do it during a non-election year. We're 5 months after a presidential election, constituents never have less power over Congress than they do right now. This is exactly the time when it's easiest for our representatives to sell us out because people will forget their anger by the next election cycle. This is the absolute worst time for constituents to push for legislation that is easy to corrupt.

6:33:00 PM  
Blogger Libby Spencer said...

Hey sandbun. I haven't been responding mainly because I'm so busy between the family and trying to settle into the new place but it's true the comment section has become really venomous. There's some people that I won't even read anymore because all they do is call me a liar and insult my intelligence.

As far as health reform, it's something that can't wait and I don't think people will easily forget if they sell us out this time. The world has changed a lot in the last couple of years with the rise of the blogs. Bloggers don't forget and nothing ever dies on the internets.

As for why I want single payer, it doesn't put the government in charge of the system. It just gives us what it says. One entity that pays for the coverage. You're still free to choose your own providers. It's not going to own hospitals or hire doctors directly. Of course as I said, I don't think that's going to happen, so the public option is as good a solution as we're going to get. This won't be a gov't takeover either. It's simply giving the people an option to buy into a plan run by a non-profit entity. You're still free to choose an overpriced private plan if you prefer. But the benefit to you, even if you do, is that currently uninsured people will have a chance to get health care at the preventative level instead of waiting until they're so critical they go to the ER, for which they can't pay, and then the cost of that eventually comes down to those who are paying premiums. The ins.cos don't eat those costs. They pass them on.

As for incompentent govt. All the examples you've given me have happened under a Republican rule. I'm willing to let the Dems have a crack at showing some competency and I've got more hope that they will because the lefties hold their side to a greater degree of accountablility than the rightwing bloggers do or ever did with the GOPers.

Besides, nothing is griven in stone. If it turns out to be awful, it can be rescinded. But it's hard to see how it could be any worse than the mess we have now.

1:28:00 PM  
Anonymous sandbun said...

Yo. I remember having faith in my (then) party once, 8 years ago. Here's hoping it works out better for you then it did for me.

I can understand the "can't wait" argument even if I don't agree with it, but I'm not convinced on the "people won't easily forget" one. I really hope you're right, but I didn't see it last election. Instead I saw people's anger fade enough that the "lesser of two evils" was enough to control their vote. I mean, I can get it with Obama vs McCain. But I would've liked to have seen a little bit more push back and success of 3rd party candidates in Congress.

When I mentioned govt control of healthcare I should've been more clear - I wasn't specifically attacking single payer or concerned about the govt telling my what doctor I could see as much as I was talking about the govt "fixing" an industry that is plenty wealthy enough to buy Congress off.

In fact single payer is evidence #1 against trusting the Dems to fix this - it's the one favored by pretty much every independent pro-govt-fixing-health-care group I've seen, yet people have had to work like crazy to get the Dems to even acknowledge it as an option! And they're claiming they have to do it that way because of the GOP even though a) they're not getting GOP votes for it no matter what b) GOP can't do crap right now. So when I see the Dems supporting the worst of two options for bs reasons, well that sets off all sorts of warning bells for me. Bells that tell me that this is not going to end well for the American taxpayer.

As far as all the bad things happening under a Rep rule, well I couldn't exactly call the Dems competent as a minority party. They sure squawked a lot, and then went along with whatever Bush wanted. Either they were incompetent as a minority party (that did control Congress the last two years) or they were lying to us. And I'd still say that if you look at who voted for it, the bailouts were a Dem policy championed by some big name Reps. And their actions since coming into power haven't exactly earned them a lot of points IMO. I mean (and I know I'm not rubbing salt but Tabasco sauce in an open wound with this one and I am sorry for that) but Obama just got done calling the gay community perverts and claiming that their rights are less important than financial considerations! I mean a guy who so quickly, for no good reason, abandoned the good fix for healthcare and thinks that little of civil liberties is the one you trust to fix healthcare?

I will give you that so far lefties have done a better job of holding their own accountable on the blogs. I say so far because it is easier to do so when no election is upcoming - during the election I saw people buying and pushing Olbermann crazy theory that Obama's FISA switch was actually a secret plot to trick people to voting for him so he could switch back once he was the president. And people on DailyKos are already starting to push back against anyone who criticizes Obama - he's got a secret plan that we're not pry to. We'll see after four years of defending their guy against Republicans attacks if they don't go bunker mentally like many on the right did. And in defense of the right, there were some who did complain, but we were largely kicked out of the party rather than seen as a part of the party that was willing to criticize the administration. Though admittedly that was because it wasn't a large enough percentage of us.

And I am going to disagree with your last point. Just like a new president rarely gives up power that his predecessor gained even if he criticized him for gaining it, people rarely are willing to give up a service once they've gotten used to it, even if it sucks. And maybe it's just cynicism talking here after 8 years of 'my' party screwing up everything they claimed to be for, but I believe a properly motivated govt can make any system, no matter how bad, worse.

10:32:00 PM  
Blogger Libby Spencer said...

I don't know sandbun. Some pols are pushing for single payer but that's because it has public appeal. I think the best recommendation for it is that the industry is so dead set against it.

And I'm not so down on the govt as you are. I think that's just snake oil the GOPers have been selling for so long people believe it. As I've said for years, there's nothing wrong with the government, it's just the people running it. We don't need a new system so much as we need better politicians. We need people who remember that the job is public service, not self-service.

8:30:00 PM  

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