Thursday, June 28, 2012

Breaking Down the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act

C.N.N. on line has a useful feature which breaks down the major components of the 2010 health care law which has just been upheld (with one major caveat) by the Supreme Court:


http://www.cnn.com/2012/03/26/health/health-care-reform-interactive/index.html

American Cancer Society Statement on Supreme Court Decision

Up-date via CNN on line:


John Seffrin, CEO of the American Cancer Society, has released a statement which says in part:







"The ruling is a victory for people with cancer and their families nationwide, who for decades have been denied health coverage, charged far more than they can afford for lifesaving care and forced to spend their life savings on necessary treatment, simply because they have a pre-existing condition...."





Majority Leader Reid

Up-date via CNN on line:


Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid gave his reaction to the ruling.







"No longer will American families be a car accident or heart attack away from bankruptcy," Reid said. "Unfortunately Republicans in Congress continue to target the rights and benefits guaranteed under this law. They’d like to give the power back to the insurance companies, the power of life and death back to the insurance companies. But our supreme court has spoken. The matter is settled."





Today Blogging the Supreme Court Decision on Affordable Health Care Act

Up-date via Huffington Post:

On Medicaid expansion, the court upheld the expansion but with a critical caveat: The federal government may not threaten the states that don't comply with the loss of their existing funding. Essentially, the Medicaid expansion is now optional for the states.




CNN: Supreme Court Upholds Health Care Law in Entirety

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Rush Post: E. J. Dionne Says Scalia Must Resign. Agreed!

It is long past time that certain members of the Supreme Court must pay the price for appearing to compromise the independence of their office.  The price I am talking about is resignation.  Several posts ago I hinted that perhaps it was time for Justice Thomas to resign.  Now E. J. Dionne of the Washington Post has written he believes Justice Scalia must resign.  Both Justices have skirted close to and probably crossed the line from judicial independence into the area of political activity by appearing as speakers at certain political events.  The entire country is coming to believe that some members of the Supreme Court appear to act in a partisan policitical manner on some issues. 

While pressuring any Justice to resign is a serious matter, the reasons in this case seem clear.  Mr. Dionne is describing in this article the reasons why Justice Scalia should resign.  Mr. Justice Scalia, if he has in fact compromised the honor of the Supreme Court in any serious way, may expect to hear calls for his resignation.  Whether such calls grow more numerous and louder is up to the American people. 

http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/ej-dionne-jr-justice-scalia-should-resign/2012/06/27/gJQApkO06V_story.html

Monday, June 25, 2012

Labor Getting Organized for a Summer of Activities

Organized labor is getting ready for a summer of activities around the country.  Goodness knows we need such activity.  The link below tells more. 


http://www.aflcio.org/Blog/Organizing-Bargaining/union-summer-2012

No News That's Fit to Print

In a take-off on The New York Times, my junior high school's newspaper heading had the statement, "All the news that fits we print."  This was quite clever for junior high students.  

As for this blog, I cannot print all the news that fits, since in the computer age there seems to be endless space. 

I do, however, try to print things of value.  Recently, in addition to a somewhat busy traveling schedule, there has been little of a constructive nature from the usual sources to pass along .

The most hopeful thing in this election year summer is a sense of urgency among the people, and a sense of possibility.   Elections are always the most terrifying time for the oligarchs (God bless their souls).  There is more than the usual sense that no one of the two "major" candidates is going to change things much, although I happen to believe a Romney, coming out of a party with a strong far-right pressure group, would be disastrous not only for the economy, but for civil rights.  Remember the smiling G. W. Bush, eating ice cream cones with the children and promising compassionate conservatism?  What did we get?  Terror and  economic calamity.  The moral:  beware Republicans wearing smiles. 

As I have said about other candidates of this nature, I imagine Mittens (the nickname given Romney by certain on-line posters) is a good enough family man, though even here, Who's to say?

But in addition to the feeling that the candidates are not equipped to deal with the economy as we know it, there is a developing feeling that we the people can indeed be the change we wish to see.  At least with a Democrat in the White House, there is not quite the same level of fear there was under Bush.  The Occupiers of America have shown us that perhaps there is not so much to fear, not even from arrest, if it is suffered in the right way! 

So, here's to an America which can yet be!  We still have the Declaration of Independence.  We still have good people with energy, skills, knowledge, and talent.  All we need is motivation and leadership.  These last two can be the subject of coming posts. 

Monday, June 18, 2012

More Evidence of Long-term Vote Rigging in the U.S.

RUSH POST:

At the link below is an excellent article about voting irregularities in the U.S. It is by Bob Fitrakis of the Free Press and includes a scientific explanation of discrepancies in voting totals after computerized voting machines were introduced into the U.S.  While this is not the only way to rig an election, it is an important one. 


http://www.freepress.org/columns/display/3/2012/1936

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Honoring Our Flag on Flag Day


At the link below is what the Betsy Ross site says is the U.S. flag code. I commend it to you for your use and reference. Also available are links to summaries and condensed versions of the flag code. I notice that the flag is not to be flown on days with inclement weather unless it is an "all-weather" flag. Does anyone know the difference between an all-weather flag and a regular flag? The flag represents a living country and should be treated as a living thing, according to web sites. However, in my view, while it does represent a living country which is established on high-minded principles, it should not be treated as holy or divine. To treat it as an object of worship is blasphemy in my religious tradition. Nevertheless, the flag should never be treated carelessly, in my opinion, and according to the U.S. Code. Today, let us fly the flag proudly in honor of the Jeffersonian ideals upon which this country is founded. N. B. : Related subjects -- such as use of the flag in political protest, and the government as separate from the idea of country -- will have to wait for another time. http://www.ushistory.org/betsy/flagcode.htm

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Justice Department Sues Florida Over Voter-List Purging

In some good news on the voting rights front, the U.S. Justice Department has sued Rick Scott's Florida over the effort to purge what Scott calls non-citizens from Florida voter rolls. As some news reports are making clear the issue is not over trying to remove non-citizens from voter rolls, but over the sloppy way the job is being done, which may cause confusion among voters. Also, the effort is being conducted within 90 days of a Federal election in violation of federal law. (Florida's primary is being held August 14.) Thank goodness the U.S. Justice Department is pursuing this matter. Now, if they will pursue the matter of vote dumping and secret, proprietary computer tabulation programs we will really begin to clean up this U.S. election mess. http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-503544_162-57451936-503544/justice-department-sues-florida-over-voter-purge/?asid=a7e065a7

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Is No Election Sacred?

Unless the press—and Democrats—give up that one-eyed view, Mitt Romney will be President in January, whether We the People vote for him or not.
Professor and author Mark Crispin Miller is performing a profound national service by warning one and all of a two-step process whereby Republicans plan to steal this fall's Presidential election -- again! Will we heed the warning? Will we take action? I know we have it in us to take needed action. Of course, it will not be easy. The problem, research has shown, is that both major parties have at times benefitted from this kind of activity or similar activity. It is an old story, with a new book cover. Read the article. Let's see what we can do about this, America! http://markcrispinmiller.com/

Friday, June 08, 2012

Currently Following Allegations of Vote Count Irregularities in Wisconsin

It's been a busy week getting ready for a major public performance. I am, afterall, a professional musician. In the meantime, there is bad music and an even worse smell coming out of Wisconsin amid allegations from well-known author Mark Crispin Miller of a mysterious decline in Democratic votes as the night wore on. Soon I will have more on this issue. In the meantime, if you submit Mr. Miller's name to a search engine you can go to his site and search for the article on the subject. Also, news comes that Mittens (the name given to Mitt Romney by on-line commentors at the Washington Post site) has hired a firm long known for working to suppress Democratic votes. The current Republicans make Donald Segretti look like a choir boy. So, the references to music in some form keeps cropping up. Politics and music are related, often in ways not immediately apparent. Prominently, a poor performance of the National Anthem recently made headlines. This happens every so often. But there are deeper connections having to do with a harmonious society. These relations shall be the subject of future explorations and posts. For now, let us hope the celestial muses will somehow find favor with a very flawed American electoral process. And if they should find it necessary to chastise dutifully, let us receive such opprobium equally dutifully. Have a melodious week-end. -- TMP *The "Dirty Tricks" errand boy for Richard Nixon in 1972.

Friday, June 01, 2012

European Monetary Crisis Deepens


The article linked here demonstrates the level of concern over the European economic situation. While I do not agree with the recommended cures here, I think the article is useful in the way it describes the current conditions. There is much to be said about the European crisis. I do see it as a crisis of capitalism, that system which encourages hyper-competitiveness, leading ultimately to instability. It should be obvious that unchecked avarice leads to unchecked competition, leading eventually to conflict and even war. The Bretton-Woods system, initiated by Franklin Roosevelt, worked well in terms of stabilizing monetary relations between countries. A return to this system would help end the turbulence now plaguing Europe, threatening the economies of the entire world. Time is running short for avoiding an even greater catastrophe. http://www.spiegel.de/international/europe/panic-rises-in-europe-as-spain-and-greece-on-the-brink-a-836440.html

Featured Post

Bill Clinton Warns on Rising Nationalism

Rush Link -- Bill Clinton on Rise of Nationalism