web statisticsRealtime Web Statistics

If Rush Limbaugh Leaves the US, Americans Will Save Money

Rush Limbaugh promised to leave the US yesterday if health insurance reform passes. Watch the video here.

Personally, I say good riddance! I’m sick of Rush bleeding my wallet dry. Why do I say that? Well, I have a couple of reasons.

Let’s start with Rush’s well known drug addiction. Being the elitist that he is, Rush wasn’t addicted to street drugs. He was addicted to Lorcet, Norco and hydrocodone (among others). I make the distinction between being addicted to street drugs and being addicted to prescription drugs for a reason; an addiction to prescription drugs requires the drug user to abuse the health insurance system in order to maintain one’s addiction. You see, Rush had to go doctor shopping in at least 3 states in order to get the drugs that he so loves shoveling down his throat.

Health insurance is a system of pooled risk. Healthy people pay their premiums which subsequently go to pay for less healthy people’s medical costs. So when El Rushbo was defrauding the health insurance system to feed his addiction, he was siphoning money away from you and I.

On top of all of that doctor shopping, Rush still found himself short of that sweet spot of utterly dazed and confused that he so craved, so he sent his maid in Florida off with a cigar box full of cash to obtain black market prescription medications. So hundreds, maybe thousands of people were committing health insurance fraud in order to feed the black market with the pills that he desired. That translates into more of our money wasted.

But that’s not all. There’s a second way that Rush’s irresponsibility is bleeding us dry. Rush is unspeakably fat. Please don’t get me wrong, I have nothing against fat people. I was egregiously fat for most of my life, until I got over it 7 years ago. I have issues with fat people that talk to me about personal responsibility, since being overweight is directly linked to dozens of health issues such as heart disease, diabetes, high cholesterol, etc. If you’re going to point the finger of “personal responsibility” at others, you should expect to have that same finger pointed at you. I don’t think it’s reasonable to expect that people are going to be fine with paying for medical procedures that can be avoided by walking for 30 minutes a day. Maybe you should exercise a little self control before discussing your views on our health insurance system.

I will NOT listen to Rush spew that “pick yourself up by the bootstraps” crap while he’s being rushed to the hospital for chest pains that I’m helping to pay to treat. Get on a treadmill Rush, and THEN talk to me about personal responsibility. I swear to god, the last time that man saw his own penis, he was watching a porno on laser disk. I’ll make you a deal Rush – when you can actually see your own penis enjoying internet porn, I will actually see your threats to leave my country as a loss.

Until that happens, my wallet and I aren’t going to miss you at all.

Share

The Republican Veil Is Lifting On The Topic Of Gay Marriage

And let me tell you, they’re an UGLY bride.

For years now, republicans have hidden behind religion to oppose gay marriage. They’re not bigots, the just love the bible. They have nothing against homosexuals, they just believe that marriage should strictly be between a man and a woman, as god intended.

That veil is slowly lifting to reveal the hateful, small minded bigotry that lies beneath.

A few days ago, Virginia attorney general Ken Cuccinelli II sent letters to colleges and universities all over Virginia, urging them to rescind policies that ban discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation. Let me repeat that in more clear terms; this man (I realize I’m playing it a little fast and use with the use of that particular noun) is actively trying to eliminate the civil rights for a group of people that he doesn’t like.

This has nothing to do with “protecting marriage”, and it’s certainly not what Jesus would do. It’s vomitous, hate filled discrimination.

But Mr. Cuccinelli is not the only one. A few weeks ago, Bob McDonnell (the shiny new Governor of Virginia that gave the rebuttal to the SOTU speech), signed an executive order that removed previously enacted protections against gay state workers on the basis of their sexual orientation.

Republican politicians are tipping their hand by extending their bigotry beyond the issue of marriage. I have to say that I, for one am glad they’re doing it. I hope they do this all over the country. No, not because I’m a homophobe that needs to deny others rights so that I can feel good about myself, but because every time they do something like this they showcase the fact that gay rights are a civil rights issue. They are finally jumping the shark on this issue.

I believe that Americans are fundamentally good people that all want the same thing; a house to call their own, a family, and a job that puts food on the table. I don’t believe that most Americans lay awake at night obsessing on who their neighbor is coupling with. And I certainly don’t believe that most Americans relish the idea of anyone being discriminated against for any reason.

For our entire history, we have fought to beat back discrimination where it exists. And we have done it in an extraordinarily short period of time. Think about it – we’re only 233 years old. That makes us infants in the grand scheme of history. In that short period of time, we gave women the right to vote. We abolished slavery and subsequently gave African Americans the right to vote. We refused to tolerate the loathsome discrimination that was separate but equal. We are the first predominantly non-black country in the world to elect a black president. In short, we ROCK!

We will not tolerate this for much longer. Civil rights win 100% of the time in America.

Republicans, you need to walk away from this issue. It’s going to pummel you the way that gun rights pummeled democrats. Younger generations don’t care to discriminate against gay people. That’s why you’re losing them. Well that, and your obtuse disdain for science (but that’s a topic for another post). Seriously, you need to walk away from this issue. It won’t serve you well. The generations that give a crap about this are dying. Stop looking back, and focus on the future.

We all need you to get it together! Watching you lose your viability really scares me. It was bad enough when I only had two parties to choose from. Watching you slowly back out of the running means that I’m just left with democrats.

Is that what you really want?

Share

Why The Sixty Vote Requirement is Bullshit

I’ve been listening to this crap about a requirement of sixty votes to pass anything in the senate for a year now and I’m over it.

I hear it from republicans, democrats, news anchors, and pundits. I have no idea why they’re all trying to force this stupidity down my throat, but I’m having none of it.

I’m going to dispel this myth once and for all. I’m going to do it in a way that’s so easy, that even the most determined party loyalist can’t argue with it. And I’m going to do it in a few short sentences.

Ready?

Section 3.4 of Article One of the constitution takes care of this on one sentence;
“The Vice President of the United States shall be President of the Senate, but shall have no Vote, unless they be equally divided.”

Sixty votes does not, a divided senate make.

See, the founding fathers envisioned a senate that would be closely divided so they spelled out a provision to break ties. They did NOT envision a senate that filibusters in perpetuity, therefore requiring a supermajority to pass ANYTHING.

See how easy that was to shoot down? You know what I had to do to get here? I launched the US Constitution app on my iPhone! Maybe we can save our government by starting a fund to buy all of our senators iPhones? It’s a thought. At least someone is having one!

Share

Bart Stupak Is A Transgender Former Prostitute

I am becoming more and more convinced of this with each passing day.

Before you write me off as someone that is afflicted with Michelle Bachmanesque mental illness, hear me out.

Let me first throw in a caveat; I don’t know for a fact that he’s a transgender former prostitute. But I’m sure that you’ll have your suspicions after you’ve heard the basis for my hypothesis.

First, some background. Bart Stupak is feverishly trying to add legislation to the health reform bill that would effectively ban abortion in America. He claims that he’s just repeating the Hyde amendment, which prohibits the use of federal funds to pay for abortion. What his amendment actually does is force insurance companies to exclude abortion services from being covered under any plan being offered on the exchange. He wants to force insurance companies to create supplemental abortion coverage that women can buy independent of the insurance plans offered in the exchange.

This is bullshit on so many levels. First off, he’s telling insurance companies to create an exclusion that doesn’t currently exist. I know of no insurance plan currently in existence, that excludes abortion coverage. This is a standard procedure that is essential to reproductive health. So he’s asking the insurance companies to cover even less than they are covering now. Excellent! The solution to our health care crisis is to have insurance companies add more exclusions to their coverage. Let’s think about this for a second. If past is prologue, it’s safe to assume that insurance companies will move to a “supplemental” model for all of their coverage. Anything to save money, right? Why collect only one monthly premium from women (who already pay 48% more for their insurance coverage than men do), when you can collect two? The next issue here is the idea that any woman would purchase this type of supplemental coverage. Does this jackass really believe that women plan abortions well in advance of conception?

Okay, enough background. Let’s move on to my hypothesis. If you’ve been paying any attention to politics, you’ve noticed a pattern with politicians and issues that they’re fervently against. If they’re obsessively anti something, it usually turns out that they’re actively participating in the thing that they’re against. Let me explain by example.

David Vitter (senator – LA) has always claimed to be a christian conservative. He received a 100% score by the  christian coalition.

Being the good christian conservative that he is, David Vitter was caught in a scandal where it was revealed that he had been seeing hookers in at least 2 different states! He was a patron of the DC madam and of the Canal Street madam in Louisiana. Charming, right? Way to hold up those family values!

Then there was Bob Allen. He was in the Florida House of Representatives. Bob Allen had a 92% rating from the Christian Coalition of Florida. In March of 2001 he cosponsored a bill that would have enhanced penalties for “offenses involving unnatural and lascivious acts”. In that same year, he was one of 21 Florida legislators to Governor Bush’s friend-of-the-court brief supporting the state’s ban on gays adopting children.

In July of 2007, Bob Allen was arrested in a public park for solicitation. The person that he solicited was an undercover policeman. Yes, policeMAN. He offered the man $20 for the privilege of giving the man a blow job. I guess you have to give Bob Allen credit for being a giver. I wonder if that helped to increase his rating with the christian coalition? I should move on to my next example, but I just have to finish this story. It’s just too much fun! During his taped interview at the police station, Bob Allen said, “Listen. A public park. I got my name on the damn building. I’m not gonna do that. You know, maybe I said it in the wrong order, but this was a pretty stocky black guy, and there were a lot of other black guys around in the park, and, you know…”

Oh, I see. You’re not gay, you’re just a flaming racist. Well that’s much better. Does the christian coalition frown more heavily upon homosexuals than they do racists?

I can go on and on with many more examples, but I won’t. Are you starting to see where my hypothesis is going?

Bart Stupak’s obsession with abortion leads me to believe that he used to be a woman that had LOTS of abortions. There’s no other possible explanation for this. Seriously if past is prologue, we’re eventually going to find out that I’m right about this.

Still think I’m crazy?

Share

Insurance Industry Gone Wild

I know, I know, the health reform debate has gone on for an eternity. Seriously, I was a young girl with braces when it started. And I get that a million points have been made on this topic, and that making another one seems like beating a dead horse.

But I feel the need to make a point that only someone in my business can make.

I am an HR consultant. As part of my consultative services I assess and design benefits packages for my clients who are, for the most part, small businesses with 100 employees or less. I feel compelled to share my perspective on health insurance during this time of heated debate about health insurance reform.

For the past 9 years, I have received double digit rate increases from all of the insurance carriers that are available on the market to choose from. To put this in perspective, I would like to share some numbers with you. In 2002, the average cost of health insurance for an employee on an HMO was $155 per month. The rates that were quoted to me for the 2010 plan year put the cost at $566 per month. Now keep in mind that this new $566 a month plan has a higher doctor visit co-pay, a higher prescription co-pay, and a higher emergency room co-pay than the 2002 plan. It also has a much larger list of prescriptions that won’t be covered under the plan.

Three years ago, I decided to try a radical plan to reign in the rising costs. I designed the company plan around a very high deductible PPO option. In exchange for a very high deductible, the insurance company offers the subscriber lower premiums. “High deductible” means $2500.00 a year for a single subscriber, $4500.00 a year for a family. When I received the quotes for the company plan renewal plan last year, the cost difference between a standard HMO and a high deductible PPO was $1896 annually. So for an annual premium savings of $1896.00, the insurance company is offering you an up front gap in coverage of $2500.00.

Sounds like a terrible deal, right? Not necessarily. If you never use your health coverage, it’s a decent alternative because you’re saving on that monthly premium cost. That’s money that you spend whether you use your insurance coverage or not. If you have any sort of chronic illness, this is a terrible deal because you’re spending $2500 to save $1896! But this type of plan made sense at the time because most employees don’t use enough health insurance to meet the deductible, which the company reimburses. So the company saves money on monthly premiums and takes on the liability of reimbursing each person on the plan against their deductible. Keep in mind that premium money is spent whether someone uses their insurance or not. Reimbursements are only made when an employee goes to the doctor.

This plan actually did work to mitigate rising costs until now.

Remember those huge premium increases I told you about? Here’s what they translate to today; the monthly cost of a high deductible PPO plan today is more than double the cost of an HMO with no deductible in 2002. That traditional HMO plan now costs $20,000.00 per year, per family for small businesses.

The 2010 increase from Blue Shield of California is up 25% from 2009. The reason they cite? Too many COBRA subscribers on the plan. What does that mean? It means that you’re paying for COBRA when you’re on it, and you’re paying for COBRA when
you’re not on it because these increased premium costs are shared by both employer and employee. Insurance companies have figured out a way to turn a much needed federal requirement to provide COBRA, into an additional revenue stream for themselves.

Not disgusted enough yet? I just received information that Blue Shield is raising their rates for small groups (defined as being groups of less than 51 subscribers) by 65% for the 2010 plan year. You read that correctly, a sixty five percent increase on the smallest of small businesses.

These costs have become untenable for small businesses. So untenable that in a sluggish economy these costs can be the difference between staying alive to create more jobs when revenue improves, and closing up shop thereby adding to the unemployment numbers.

Most people agree that small business is the foundation for a strong, healthy US economy. Yet in a time when we need small business more than ever, our health insurance system is crushing small businesses and making it virtually impossible for entrepreneurs to venture out and start companies that ultimately create new jobs.

While we all hope that 2010 will bring us a stronger economy in these uncertain times, I am certain of one thing; my clients won’t be creating jobs anytime in the near future.
Share

Reconciliation

President Obama came out today and finally called for an up or down vote on health reform.

My first thought was, “It’s about fucking time.” Seriously, you’ve let the centerpiece of your legislative goals drag on for 14 months. Get it done, already!

But let me throw in a positive aspect to this before I continue the rest of my bitching. This is actually pretty bold for Obama. Seriously, I think that he may have found the big boy pants he had on when he took down Hillary. I’m a bit of a fashion whore and I have to say, I’m a big fan of Obama’s big boy pants. I hope he plans on wearing them more often.

Why is this bold for Obama? Because what he is supporting when he says “up or down vote” is reconciliation. This is bold because republicans have done a fairly good job at attaching negative connotations to passing this bill through reconciliation. They’ve mostly done this by lying about what reconciliation is. FOX has been referring to it as “the nuclear” option, in an effort to further confuse and scare. Let’s clear this up once and for all.

The nuclear option and reconciliation are not the same thing. The nuclear option would eliminate the filibuster as an option in the senate once and for all. I understand how this may sound appealing right about now, but it’s a really bad idea. The filibuster is the one mechanism that the minority party that ensures that they can’t get shut out of a debate entirely. We need to preserve the rights of the minority party. I personally believe that the best bills are the ones that are fought and negotiated vigorously by opposing sides. What we’re left with is better than what we get when one side with one ideology creates a bill. Republicans threatened to trigger the nuclear option when they had a slight majority in the senate. Democrats backed down in order to preserve the filibuster.

Reconciliation is something entirely different. Reconciliation would allow a straight up or down vote on this bill without demolishing the filibuster. Historically, reconciliation was only used to pass through bills that would lower the deficit. The Byrd rule prohibited the use of reconciliation on measures that would increase the deficit beyond 10 years (of the passing of the measure). Republicans, being the fiscal conservatives that they are, blew the Byrd amendment out of the water 3 times over. They used it to pass all 3 of Bush’s tax cuts which were not budgeted for. Those tax cuts were 100% deficit spending. It was the least “conservative” thing that the republican party could have done, which is why it’s a little a little hard to listen to the same exact group of shitbags now crow about the deficit. But I digress.

COBRA was passed by reconciliation. It’s right there in the name; Consolidated Omnibus Reconciliation Act. I bring up COBRA because it shoots down a number of the republican talking points in one fell swoop. First, it demonstrates that reconciliation is not a scary, government demolishing procedure that will leave us all rocking back and forth in the fetal position from the trauma if it all. Second, it blows away that whole, “no major piece of legislation has ever been passed through reconciliation” horseshit.

Now I know that democrats perpetually feel the need to educate the public on how things work. Shit, I’m here trying to educate the public on how things work. I have to say that I think that education is the wrong path to take to combat republican misdirection. I think that democrats should educate the American people on the only thing that they need to understand. Republicans are breaking filibuster records (previously set by republicans) at an astonishing rate. Democrats need to let the American people know that one simple fact. Then, they need to add, “So we’re going to have to use reconciliation repeatedly, relentlessly, and in ways that we never imagined having to use it in order to get the people’s work done”. Period. No scholarly tutorials on parliamentary procedure, no seminars on the origin of reconciliation, and most importantly, no acquiescing the point that using reconciliation is dirty. They should have none of that.

This one simple, straight forward approach serves two very important purposes. First, it shoves this petulant perpetual filibustering tactic right back down the republican’s throats. Maybe Mitch McConnell will think twice next time he lets someone like Jim Bunning cut unemployment benefits off for millions of people. Second, it prepares the American people for the possibility that there’s more of this to come. And if this ever comes up again, it establishes that republicans gave them no choice.

Remember how I promised you more bitching about Obama? Well here it is – if they’re going to pass this bill through reconciliation, they should go for the gold. They should go for the version that reduces the deficit the most. They should go for the version that covers the most number of people and offers the maximum amount of choices. They should go for the version that has a public option in it. They claim that they don’t have the votes to pass a bill with the public option in it. I say SHOW ME.

Cenk Uygur recently blogged about this here:

http://www.smirkingchimp.com/thread/27044

I agree with him. Take the damned vote and show me who’s against it. I want to know which representative, that gets government run health care on my dime is against my right to the same options that they have. Take the damned vote and show me whether the problem is that there’s a lack of will to get this accomplished, or whether there’s simply a lack of leadership. Until you do that, I just remain bitter about the whole damned thing. I’m pissed off at the idea that you’re going to force me to buy insurance from the same companies that have been fucking me for years. I’m pissed off that you’re naïve enough to believe that they’re going to stop fucking me unless you step in and FORCE them to stop fucking me. Take the vote and show me what the problem is so that I can help you.

President Obama, I’m the vote that you’re trying to buy with all of that Goldman Sachs money you’re courting. You could cut out the middle man if you did what the American people elected you to do. There’s no need for the piles and piles of lobbyist money if you keep our votes.

Share

An introduction

The 2 things about politics that make me the bitchiest are politicians and party loyalists.


The politicians think that we’re stupid. That pisses me off. But there’s a reason why they think we’re stupid. They think we’re stupid because we constantly prove to them how stupid we are. We view politics in the same way that we view sports. We are loyal to our team no matter what. That’s stupid.

Supporting your team no matter what they do is the dumbest thing that you can do for your team. See when you give your team unquestioning support, they stop caring about you because they don’t have to. They have your support. They can sell out your life, liberty, and pursuit of happiness in order to serve their corporate masters because you will always vote for them. If your only criteria for voting for a candidate is that they’re running on your party’s ticket, then you’re stupid. You’re stupid, and you deserve a representative that knows you’re stupid.

I’ll admit it, I have a team. My team pretty much blows. My team likes to portray itself as the team that stands up for the people. Well, they would stand up for the people if there weren’t so many insurmountable obstacles. They would stand up for the people if the other team weren’t so mean! They would stand up for the people if the other team would just stop blocking everything they’re trying to do. My team are the “good guys”. They will stand up for me when I help to get more of them elected. I just need to be patient, and work tirelessly to help strengthen the troops!

Here’s the weird thing about that – the “bad guys” never had anything resembling a super majority in the senate to pass anything (more accurately, everything) they wanted to pass. The “bad guys” managed to pass huge tax cuts for the richest people with only 51 seats in the senate. Now keep in mind that they passed this trillion dollar tax cut without paying for it. That’s right, they didn’t cut spending to adjust for the decrease in revenue. Do you think that most Americans would have supported that if they knew that is was 100% deficit spending?

So when my team can’t pass anything that improves my life with a 59 seat majority in the senate, I have to wonder. I have to wonder if they really expect me to believe that they want to do the right thing, but can’t because they’re undermanned. Maybe they’re really well meaning, but just totally inept? Or maybe, they’re not well meaning at all. Maybe they’re working for the same team that the “bad guys” are working for. Let’s be honest here, all of the candidates from both parties are funded by the usual suspects. The oil industry, banking, insurance, defense, etc. The money comes from the same place, regardless of party affiliation, so maybe they are both on the same team.

Is it possible that my party of “good guys” is just playing a role in political theater? Is it possible that my guys are playing the role of bumbling, fumbling, adorable schmucks that mean well? Is it possible that the “bad guys” are just playing the role of shit kicking, pick-yourself-up-by-your-boot-straps, macho patriots, designed to appeal to those that primarily use their reptilian brains? Is it possible that they’re both on the same team?

Think about it, the roles that they have defined themselves in are designed to appeal to the two main components of human nature. Is that a coincidence?

I have to wonder.

And since I’m on a roll I have to wonder why, in the greatest country on earth, I only get 2 parties to choose from? I guess that question can only be answered by going back to one of the 2 things that make me bitchiest; party loyalists.

We don’t have more choices because we’re too loyal, lazy, or disengaged to create them.

Yup, it’s all our fault.

So what is this blog really about? I’m not going to lie to you, it’s mostly about me bitching because (as I’ve already established) I’m a bitchy person. But more specifically, it’s about bipartisan bitching about what’s really wrong with politics in America. I’m an equal opportunity bitch. I actually believe that bitching about my own team is far more productive than bitching about the other team.

Fixing the republican party is republicans’ problem. Sorry republicans, but you let the last administration crap all over everything you ever claimed to believe in. Fiscal conservativism has been a republican joke since Reagan was the first president to take the deficit into an “illion” that starts with a “t”. W took Reagan’s spending sprees to a whole new level by outspending the 42 presidents that preceded him combined. Small government went to shit when you didn’t stand up against W illegally wiretapping you. And that cowboy shit kicker thing you love so much became an illusion when Reagan gave Iran arms in exchange for hostages. Newsflash: he caved in to the demands of a terrorist nation! Let’s not forget the romantic stroll, complete with hand holding that W took with Prince Abdullah. That was some impressive shit kicking, wasn’t it? I can’t fix your party from this side of the aisle. I’ve tried for years now. It hasn’t gotten me (or any other democrat) anywhere. You broke your party. You fix it.

I feel like I’m most productive when I bitch about my own party. I have to work to fix it from within otherwise, there won’t be anyone working to fix it.


Yes I still have a team, even though they’re retarded (sorry Sarah Palin but this is the bitchy blog, not the politically correct blog). I still have my team because I believe that fixing the parties that we have is much more plausible than starting new parties at this time. That doesn’t mean that I don’t believe that other parties won’t be viable some day. I just think that getting more people engaged in the system we have now is the first step. When more people start paying attention, more parties become viable.

Personally, I’ve been working in primarying out the “problem children” in my party. Failing that, I’m willing to hold my nose and vote for a republican if that’s what it takes to send the message that I won’t support any bullshit that is put before me. We’re screwed unless more people jump on my bandwagon. So if you’re a party loyalist, this is not the place for you!
Share