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Congress is budged $1.248 billion a year… there are 52 weeks in each year… The cost of congress per week is $24 million.  (How can that be?)

Since the Tea Party entered the scene, there have been 34 votes to repeal Obama Care, all passing the House and all dying in the Senate.  These are feel good bills being proffered by Congresspeople to satisfy their most ardent critics back home.  If Congressperson “A” proffers a  bill to abolish Obamacare, … Congressperson “B” does exactly the same copy two weeks later.  Congressperson “C” then follow up with the same copy the next month.

These votes are not free.  They take time away from other duties. If this time were spent on something that would pass the Senate, all of us might be better off.

CBS estimated these bills took up an average of  2 and a half hours each.  If added they amount to roughly 80 hours or two weeks…

At  $24 million a week, these silly votes of posturing have cost the American taxpayers $48 million dollars…   $48 million would pay for 960 $50,000 jobs for a full year…

America can’t afford Republicans any more.

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“Blah, blah, blah Obamacare”. say Republicans.  I say “Get over it.”   This day the House is going to vote on Michelle Bachman’s  House Bill Number One, to completely abolish Obamacare…..

Of course it is ridiculous.  And if the entire Republican contingent votes to undo it, the entire Republican contingent as I have said all along and most of America agrees, is ridiculous…. The best thing Republicans can do for their party is censure Michelle Bachman by having this bill go down to inglorious defeat….  Because this will bludgeon them in 2014.

My title said “Cherries”… So here is the cherry… an account from someone upon getting insurance for the first time… and reflecting upon how it feels…

“Financially, I’d be maybe $100 a month poorer [without coverage]. I would not be monitoring my blood sugar. I would not be paying as much attention to my cholesterol. I probably would have lost some weight but I don’t think I would have lost so much, and I don’t know if I would have been so good at keeping it off. I’d be much more anxious about what could go wrong. […]

And there’s something about just feeling like you’re part of regular life. There’s a lot of emphasis on how everyone should be healthy and everyone should live longer, and you don’t want to be a burden on society. If you don’t have medical insurance, you’re kind of not part of that. It’s hard to explain, but there’s an element of participating in society that being able to go to the doctor gives you. Everybody always asks everyone how you’re doing, and to be able say “My doctor says I’m doing really well,” that’s nice, instead of being in a group of people and saying, “Well, I don’t really go to doctors.”

Obamacare is good. People want it.  We need it badly. We have it. No one is going to take anything away from the American People that they want without losing the fight….

Partisan Politics Above The Nation’s Good... That banner hangs in the RNC’s Washington DC Lobby…. and is the first thing one sees upon stepping in….

Insurance Rates Soar
Courtesy of FRED

This shows a problem and why blaming each other is a distraction being fanned by the core of the problem itself.

The personal part of insurance rates have gone up, and employees are yelling: what do you mean I have to pay more… I’m paying double already!

The corporations are telling their employees. We can’t afford to take up more of your insurance rates! We’re paying double already….

The big answer is why?

When George W. Bush ran for president, the following groups funded over 90% of his campaign.

Insurance Companies.

Medical Corporations and hospital chains

Energy Corporations.

We know what happened to energy during his two terms. We just learned what happened to medical and insurance that same time frame.

Obviously the extra money is going into the Medical Corporations provided insurance companies are cutting checks for an excessive number of claims over what it did in 2000, or into the insurance exec’s pockets, if they are not….

As a grand experiment, Delaware should allow anyone to buy into its Medicare option as an option for meeting the required claim to have Medical Insurance.

The graph simply shows why.

Hi, I’m Cathy Cloutier and I approve this message.

Hi, I’m Chris Counihan, and I approve this message.

One nice thing about the 5th District:  no matter who wins or who loses, the initials on the 5th district desk in the Senate will not have to change.

The most interesting aspect of the race is the position being taken on abortion and gay rights by the incumbent, Cathy Cloutier…. Cathy Cloutier plays both sides, being endorsed by Planned Parenthood as being pro-abortion, and by Rose and A Prayer, as being anti-abortion….  How can that be?   I am for life, before I was against it?  I am for a woman’s right to choose, before I was against it? Does it sound like someone filled out questionnaires two different ways to get two opposite endorsements, hoping one side would never see the other?

If so, is that the kind of tough leadership, the 5th district needs? “Hi, Cathy, I’m voting for you because you are for planned parenthood”…  6 months later… “What are you doing… I voted for you because you “were” pro choice!…..   or…

“Hi, Cathy, I’m voting for you because you are against abortion.  I’m Catholic you know.  …. 6 months later…”What are you doing!… I voted for you because you “were” pro life….

Is that fair?   I mean…  would it be fair if you went to SuperFresh, and bought a box of Ritz Crackers, and opened them to find orange cream filled Oreos?   How would you deal with a manager when you took it back who said….  sorry, we couldn’t sell those the way they were, so we repackaged them in Ritz Cracker boxes… Buyer (voter) beware!  You bought them, you own them!  They’re really not bad if you dip them in chocolate first…”  And when you get irate with him, he wags his finger in your face and goes… “ah, ah, ah, I know Tom Carper.”…

And then there was the story on trying to make all marriage equal…. Cathy Cloutier was courted for her vote… “Oh, yes, I’m for gay marriage, all the way, count me in…. I like gays and I think gays are just as normal as people who aren’t gay… I will be glad to support gay marriage”….

When the vote came…  “Has anyone seen Cathy?  Let’s check the hall… Cathy, you out here?  Someone go in the rest room… Cathy… Cathy… are you in here?  Quick.  Go check her parking spot…   That’s her car, it’s backing out… Call her… she’s making the turn onto King….  Call her…   Did you get her?…  No! …voice mail!…..”

Question is… does the 5th District deserve this type of leadership?  Or, does it deserve better? Seriously there are two types of people serving their districts.  One is everything to everybody, and no one to nobody…  Like social gadflies they touch on every subject, but never let on who they are or what they feel…  Basically you elect them because of other reasons, besides their convictions…  You could have had a drink with them.  You could have spoken with them on the phone.  You could have once been friends with her husband… Whatever the reason, you couldn’t care one iota what she thinks or what she believes…  We all know someone like that…..

The other side, of course, is the competent one.  He learns, creates, moves forward, and causes his district to prosper, instead of just wither on the vine… This person has convictions and is not afraid to tell you about them.   In this case, Chris is pro women ( actually more than the woman running), and is pro equality to marriage, not letting arbitrary items like gender stand in the way of two human beings who love each other and want to spend life together as a couple….  Seriously, what kind of ogre could be against marriage.

It appears the Cathy Cloutier kind.

Cathy has been a Senator since “Gore got more”, and “we got Bushed whacked”… 2000.  She has been a Senator for twelve years… What’s happened over those twelve years?  9/11 for one, two wars for two, a giant recession for three,  the acceptance of gay marriage, now even by Chik Fil A, … quite a few things…   How many of your cars were built before 2000?  My guess 1%… How many of you still work off laptops from the year 2000… probably less than 1%… How many of you still use the same phone as you did in 2000, you know the one where you pull the antennae out to talk or receive calls?   How many of you have the same computer you did in 2000?

Point is, keeping the old around hurts us sometimes.  There comes a time to upgrade. To put new blood in.  To give the energy levels a boost…  The longer you keep someone in the same office, the less and less they become effective….

How will someone who runs from accountability be able to handle the challenges we face the next four years?  If Romney gets elected, Federal funds to Delaware will stop instantly in order to cut back on the Federal Deficit.  If Romney gets elected,  the stock market takes a nose dive, as confidence in a campaign run only on lies, dissipates.  If Romney gets elected, Obamacare is instantly gone, and we have to rework the entire medical process all over again..  If Romney gets elected, Federal taxes get sliced, which means our taxes now appear higher by percentage in comparison.  We will have to have backbone to raise taxes, since Romney is sending us most of what used to be run by the Federal Government, down to the states, with more responsibility, we will have no choice but to raise state taxes sky high to cover the new services thrust upon us…

Is Cathy Cloutier up to the challenge?  Chris Counihan certainly is…  With insurance, government, political science, entrepreneurship, experience, Chris Counihan has the ability to accept very challenging situations.  Indeed, we know they will be very challenging during the  next four years.  As we try to wrap our state around Obamacare if Obama wins,  someone well versed in the insurance trade inside the legislature, can balance the weakness  existing  in our state insurance department.  As we try to insource new funding, having someone who has direct experience in trying to woo jobs to Delaware,  is exactly what we need as we banter over how to make that happen.

Is Cathy Cloutier still up for the challenge?   The voters of the 5th, can choose between two types.  One, is the person who waits for others to do the leg work, asks their opinion, and then votes without knowing any of the details, and the other type, is one who does the leg work…

There are two completely different styles… One old, set, and hard to change.  The other, new, full of ideas and energy, competent, aggressive in tackling problems, and just happens to be in the same party that controls the state….

Cathy Cloutier states that she gets along with both parties.  (Obviously now we know why…)  But she has to.  There are only 7 Republicans in the state Senate. There are 14 Democrats as well as a Democratic governor.  Doesn’t it make more sense to elect someone who doesn’t have to fight every minute just to bring some crumbs back to her district?  Doesn’t it make more sense, if the Democrat is far more qualified, to put him in so the 5th District can once again thrive, and be proud of its own when it picks up the News Journal in the morning?

You will have to decide… but a wise man once said… “never do business with your friends… they won’t take you seriously, and you won’t take them seriously”…   Many people are friends with Cathy…  They will have to choose between friendship and everyone-else-in- their-district’s, … well being….  It will be a tough four years for this state’s government….   so choose wisely….

If you gotten any mail from your homeowners or business insurance pull it out now.  Go to usually the third from the last page and look for flood damage.  Often like bills flowing through the House or Senate, these policies simply tell you to  “delete these words” and “substitute these words’.  Unless you have an old policy to cross reference, you probably do not know  where you stand. Your friendly Democratic reminder.  These were put in place by Republicansand were buttressed against the Democratic assault to change them, by the Tea Party…   Their motto:  Private companies Know Best, won the day. Here is what to look for.

  • Homeowners’ insurance typically doesn’t cover floods; do you have a flood insurance rider?
  • Check the definition of “flood”.  Does it cover  storm surge, burst pipes, water seepage, and basements filling up with water?
  • Look for “anti-concurrent causation“;  does your insurance policy cover simultaneous events? From both wind AND water?
  • How much will your insurance pay?  Renew like new? To make it livable? Or to offer “some” financial assistance.
  • How high is your deductible.  When you bought, it was 50 dollars.  Today claimants are discovering it is $10,000…..
  • Does your coverage only cover hurricanes?  Sandy was only classified as  a depression when over Delaware.

That is what those who have private insurance through Bain Capital invested companies are discovering today….  Those fortunate to be in a Federal Disaster Area, have access to complete coverage through interestingly FEMA (the Federal Emergency Management Agency) which does provide insurance through NFIP (the National Flood Insurance Program). Romney said get rid of FEMA and give it to the states, or even better to private insurance companies…. which he owns, of course…. Bottom line, check your policies and if you see any Republican in your daily travels,   tell them STFU….

One Fish, Two Fish

If wishes were fishes…

I’d go catch me one…..

 

What would I wish for?  A great economy. That would take care of so many problems.

The issue within the economy that gets the most attention, is jobs.  Not enough people are working. And the reason not enough people are working is because not enough money is getting spent, to add on additional help.

What we need is to get more money spent, and then add on extra people to assist with that increase of business.  So, how do we do that?

 Here are the old tried and true was trotted out long ago.

1) The government can hire. Those people spend money into the economy.

2) The government can award contracts.  Those people now working, spend money into the economy.

3) The government can dole out more tax cuts.  If people get more in their pocket they will spend more.

We’ve tried that, but the amount the government needs to spend to cover the salaries of 16 million people, would be (at $50,000 each per year)  would be $800 billion.  (Does TARP come to mind?)  That is just a too big job for government to handle by itself…

Who on earth has $800 billion.  Are we doomed?

No, corporate America makes almost $2 trillion of profits per quarter. By now all of you should know that is every 65 working days.  

 

So who do YOU think should be hiring all these unemployed workers?  The government that is in debt ($16 trillion) up to its eyeballs, or…. corporate America that after all expenses, has a new $2 trillion every 65 days to play with? 

I hope you said Corporate America.  We now know the cost: $800 billion/year. We now know the profit: just under $8 trillion per year (four quarters). 

So the cost to Corporate America of putting all these unemployed back to work, is in percent: 10%. So instead of making a full dollar in profit, Corporate America makes 90 cents on the dollar.

If that seems like a lot, keep in mind we are not discussing an expense here.  That is not a 10 % cost incurred that the business has to scramble and find some method to compensate. Historically profits are not this high. In fact, they never have been this high in the history of the United States, at least according to the records kept today of long ago.  So these very high profits are a new phenomena… They are probably occurring because business just aren’t hiring; 

Remember: profit is what is left over after everything has been paid off.  So having businesses take ten percent of their “profits” and put people to work, doesn’t cost them anything. They just don’t record dream level profits anymore.  Instead, they just have healthy profit levels..

So let us review.  We have 16 million unemployed and out of work, who for just $800 billion could be working at $50,000 a year.  That would give us zero unemployment. And we have Corporate America making $8 trillion a year earning profit that is so much, they have no idea or way to spend it.  

So, all we have to do is make, force, impose, compel Corporate America hire 16 million people. 

But wait.  Wasn’t everyone up in arms over forcing, imposing, and compelling Corporate America to pay for health insurance?  Saying things like the government “can’t make anyone do anything?”  Didn’t a whole bunch of patriots emerge from the woodwork with that philosophy in mind?

Justice Roberts opened the door.  And he showed Congress the way.  Raise taxes on Corporate America; its legal; Congress can raise taxes. . Raise taxes and take their money… But, if you want to be sporting, you can allow them to not record profits as high as they have.  You could also allow them to write off the amounts they invested in building new plants, establishing budgets for R & D.  Hey, they could even pay you more.  Better to have you a happy camper than give that money to the IRS…..

So you see, if we just raise taxes, the economy takes off.  And raising taxes is really just a trick with words.  All we are really going to do is raise the tax rates.  The amount of taxes a corporation actually pays will stay the same or maybe be less, because their profit (by their choice) will go down and so though they will be asked to pay a higher rate, it will be on far less “income”.  And where does that money go?  If they act in their own selfish interests and choose to invest the money in themselves so they don’t have to fork it over to the FED’s, .. all that money goes to new jobs.  16 million of them.

The solution is plain as the words on this page.  Raise the tax rates, watch corporations reinvest in themselves here in America, watch the hiring begin en masse, and watch the economy get roaring again.

It is nothing new;  it is the way it always was, up until the Bush Tax Cuts were passed.  How many of you remember old Delaware, where around the middle of December, Dupont’s tax division presented the data to the chairman, “this is what you gotta spend”; and building contracts came flying out of 1007 N. Market Street.

We should have never stopped the gravy train, but we did.  It’s time we return to reality and raise those Federal Tax rates.  It wouldn’t hurt to remove every Republican from office while we are at it………

I think I just caught me a wish…….  

 

 

 

 

 

Here is what we lose if Republicans for some reason take the ACA (Affordable Care Act) away.

WE LOSE: Medicare picking up the cost of prescription drugs, without which, they would do without.

WE LOSE: Young people staying on their parents health care until 26; without which, all these would be uninsured.

WE LOSE: Access to preventive care like colonoscopies or mammograms without co-pays.

WE LOSE: The right to get sick and NOT have our health insurance get dropped because we have now, become a liability.  If you get sick, they can’t drop you!

WE LOSE:  Tax credits to small businesses to balance the payment towards their employees insurance.

For all you big babies crying boo hoo hoo over Justice Robert’s defection, why on earth do you think we would ever give these up, just so some rich person who already has tons, and tons, of extra cash just sitting around doing nothing, gets to pay a tiny little bit less in taxes?

Are you nuts?

Mitt Romney Freaking That His Own Program Passed The Supreme Court

Hube will back me up on this first part. Unlike him I have vague distant memories of comic book plots (unfortunately I was the one always being shown them, and never got to read them twice) but it usually went like this. The standard plot form was that an evil villain suddenly appeared; he wrought destruction; the forces of good were not strong enough to win, in fact they got devastated, appeals go out for a super hero; a weak super hero shows first, almost dies, the main superhero arrives just in time, fights and vanquishes the villain, and peace is restored,

We see the same with Republicans and a piece of legislation that has many benefits. The Affordable Health Care Act.

At first, it was a 41 majority in the Senate that was going to overturn their own version of Health Care. Then, as that began to crumble under the independence of Maine’s constituency who liked the idea of Health Care that was affordable, they turned to insurance advertising. When that failed, and the bill was passed, they turned to the courts. When the supreme court failed, they turned to the next election. If you read news reports today, the Republican party is crowing that big donors are funnelling money their way.

They are cajoling the undermining of the American process by spending great sums of money. They are extolling the buying of elections. They are writing off every man, woman, and child who votes in favor of the almighty dollar.

They are actually praising the corruption of the system, because that is their new superhero. Big money will sweep in, change the election, and Americans will once again choose to have Republicans pass the new Unaffordable Health Care Act.

Obviously they are panicking that in 2014, it just perhaps might come to pass: Insurance companies won’t be able to drop you when you become sick!!! .. Heavens, if that happens that will just kill profits.

Remember people, the choice is simple. The Affordable Health Care Act of Obama, versus the Un-Affordable Health Care Act of Romney and the Republicans.

The wealthy fat cats are being hailed as the new superhero’s. Unfortunately they’re only 1% of the population; they just don’t have the votes. I wonder who Republicans will turn to next. Oh, Donald Trump.
The Next Superhero for Republicans

This is mainly for my friends on the right. After reading the headline, they will rush off to relieve their bowels. Then once empty, come back to read the rest.

There is an old adage, that at one time was often pasted on the first state’s only right wing blog, now called Delaware Politics. It used to be FSP for First State Politics.

That adage, was: Don’t tax you; don’t tax me; tax that man behind the tree….

Obama has said Catholic employers won’t pay for birth control. Neither will those who use it.

It will be provided free of charge by the insurance companies…..

The property of the Roman Catholic Church here in America……
$837,271,000….

The total wealth of families in the bottom three quintiles is about $2.2 billion.. (putting this and this image together)

The total assets of American Insurance Companies, $1,190 Billion or $1.2 Trillion…

Pure genius.

Free contraception for all……

It is a simple vote…

Should we or should we not put this man in an administrative function.

Please vote yes…. or no…..

(It should be open cut because a majority have already said they would support Cordray as head of the Consumer Financial Agency.) Just get it done…

But, it never goes to vote. In a motion to stop debate requiring 60 votes, 53 are found….

There is nothing more to debate. Vote yes or no… The argument has been on the table for months… But no… it cannot go forward because the Republican Party (all of it) had 45 members who voted against it…

The agency still has no one at the top to get it rolling. There is no one regulating Wall Street as we speak, simply because the entire block of Republicans, who voters put into minority receivership based on their previous track record, voted NOT to stop debate.

There will be no government until there are no Republicans.
There will be no Congress, until there are no Republicans.
There will be no Democracy. until there are no Republicans.
There will be no United States of America, until there are no Republicans.

(Sad thing this is not hyperbole. This is not campaign rhetoric. This is not hateful bantering. This is what is really happening. Makes a veteran want to cry)