News for social, fiscal & national security conservatives who believe in God, family & the USA. Upholding the rights granted by God & guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution, traditional family values, "republican" principles / ideals, transparent & limited government, free markets, liberty & individual freedom. All content approval rests with the ARRA News Service Editor. Opinions are those of the authors. While varied positions are reported, beliefs & principles remain fixed. No revenue is generated for this site - no paid ads accepted - no payments for articles. Fair Use doctrine is posted & used. Editor/Founder: Bill Smith, Ph.D. [aka: OzarkGuru & 2010 AFP National Blogger of the Year] Follow @arra Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org (Pub. Since July, 2006)Home Page
One of the penalties for refusing to participate in politics
is that you end up being governed by your inferiors. -- Plato
Saturday, June 27, 2009
Are You Confused about Health Care Reform
Tony Perkins, Washington Update: There are very good reasons to be confused about what kind of health care reform Congress is debating right now. The health reform plans keep changing. Even in the committees of jurisdiction, only part of each bill is being considered because the rest of the bill has not been drafted. And when it gets drafted, it has to be scored (its cost to the taxpayer determined) by the Congressional Budget Office. The scores have been so high, ranging from $1.6 trillion to $2.4 trillion in the U.S. Senate and $3 trillion in the U.S. House, that the crippling price tags are causing further changes.
Until the Democrats decide whether or not to have a government health plan option, the delays and confusion will continue. On one hand, three of the most influential House Democratic caucuses have demanded a public/government plan option. On the other, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the American Medical Association and the Association of Health Insurance Plans have all come out four-square against a government plan. When the leaders of the employer, doctor and insurance communities unite to oppose a specific legislative item, it becomes very difficult to pass. Moreover, President Obama has said that there is "no line in the sand" on a government plan, but House Speaker Pelosi says she cannot pass health reform in the House without a government plan.
If you are confused about what is happening on health care reform, don't worry, so are members of Congress. I will keep you posted on the changes through the Washington Update and the weekly Perkins on Point video. This week I zero in on the President's statement and two votes in the Senate this week which signal that a government health care plan will lead to vulnerable people being denied certain treatments and procedures. Check it out by going on FRC Action's new online health care resource, www.clearconsciencehealthcare.organd be sure to pass it on to your friends. Tags:Barack Obama, Family Research Council, FRC, health care, Impeach Nancy Pelosi, nationalized health care, Tony PerkinsTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
by the Ozark Guru: When readers asked me if I get threats. I say yes, occasionally. When asked if I was afraid, I answer "No, I have a the latest Nokia 'special' cell phone."
A friend asked my wife if I ever feared speaking out. She replied, "Lord no, he has the latest Nokia 'special' cell phone. "
My sons called and expressed concern about the economy and potential future threats against them and their family. To each I replied, "be prepared, get the latest Nokia 'special' cell phone. I purchased one for myself in black and another one in pink for your mother."
I could go about all the many inquiries and/or expressions of concern about current events, but as I tell everyone, no matter where I am, if trouble starts, the lights go out, or the cell towers go down, I am prepared with my new Nokia "special" cell phone. As you prepare for the events you fear in your life, join my friends, family and myself by getting your own Nokia "special" cell phone (it is Twitter ready); I'm sure you will be glad you did.
No promotional funds were accepted
and no Nokia cell phones were killed in the making this advertisement.
Certain restrictions apply in countries run by dictators and socialists.
Tags:Cell phones, humor, Nokia, political satire, twitterTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
The Democrats were not all in agreement on this bill. We should all thank the 44 Democrats who bucked their own party to vote against this idiocy. However, with the victory by 2 votes, it is also appropriate to identify the 8 Republicans who sold out. For the record, they are:
- Mary Bono Mack (CA) (202) 225-5330
- Mike Castle (DE) (202) 225-4165
- Mark Kirk (IL) (202) 225-438
- Leonard Lance (NJ) (202) 225-5361
- Frank LoBiondo (NJ) (202) 225-6572
- John McHugh (NY) (202) 225-4611
- Dave Reichert (WA) (202) 225-7761
- Chris Smith (NJ) (202) 225-3765
Many of you may agree that these guys desperately need to be REPLACED with some people with COMMON SENSE. They may claim they voted for jobs. But, in the long run the bill is a jobs killer with respect to the number of jobs lost verses the number that will be added. But most of all this is one massive tax bill and expansion of the federal government. Republicans, no matter what they were offered, should has stood strong against expanding government and increased taxation. They broke with the Republican leadership and even slapped the 44 Democrats that stood with the GOP majority against the bill.
Although we cannot report on every representative, we will look at one Democrat who did NOT represent his constituents, but instead voted for the bill. Arkansas has four Congressmen - 3 Democrats and 1 Republican. On a whole, the people of Arkansas are conservative and did not want the Cap-in-Trade passed. The people of Arkansas have lower incomes and a higher proportion of tax burden on their incomes. If the bill becomes law, it will serious affect Arkansas in many negative ways.
For example, the bill will significantly affect Arkansas' public schools which are already economically stressed. It will increase the cost of operations for Arkansas’ schools by over $63 million through higher electric rates and natural gas rates. This is an average of $232,000 per school district per year that can no longer be used to hire teachers or give teachers raises. This does not even address the higher cost of fuel for school bus fleets and grounds maintenance operations. These increased energy costs will require higher property tax rates for Arkansas property owners.
Then, there is the additional direct tax to each family via their energy bills. The Heritage Foundation estimates that cap-in-trade could increase the average American family’s energy bill by $1,500 annually! This is money that Arkansas families do not have. It is interesting that numerous federal hydro power dams within Arkansas provides electricity to the national grid. However, Arkansas residents do not benefit from this massive power generation. Instead, Arkansas must meet its own power needs via coal or natural gas. And, the cost of generated electricity is about to increase significantly. Also, Arkansas is largely agricultural and the impact of "cap-in-trade" will significantly affect the farmers and ranchers. As a result of the above and many other facts, Rep. Marion Berry (D-1st District), Mike Ross (D-4th District) and John Boozman (D-3rd District) voted against the bill.
However, Vic Snyder (D-2nd District) failed to vote for his Arkansas constituents and voted to raise Arkansans' utility cost, petroleum cost and taxes in numerous forms! One frustrated reader expressed the following generally felt outrage over Snyder's vote: "This is not the first issue where Snider has voted his own 'liberal agenda' against the desires of his hard working Arkansas constituents. I sincerely hope that Arkansans finally sees through Snyder's pretense! Snyder has become one of the Washington establishment - an elite who votes with the socialists! Snyder is definitely not a blue-dog southern democrat who believes in fiscal conservatism or he would not have voted for this piece of crap legislation!" It is clear that Vic Snyder has sold out Arkansas and that if this bill becomes law, Arkansans will again be forced to bear a disproportionate tax burden and loss of jobs. Tags:Arkansas, cap-and-trade, GOP, higher taxes, lost jobs, Vic SnyderTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
CitizenLink - Focus Action Update: Earlier this week, the Senate held an important hearing on the so-called hate crimes legislation that grants special protections based on sexual orientation and "gender identity" (without clearly defining those terms). Our research staff and the overwhelming majority of family policy organizations are convinced that this bill is a serious threat to our religious liberties.
In fact, this bill could impact your pastor's freedom of speech to preach the biblical view of homosexuality. Even though the bill does not specifically target pastors, combining it with the existing "inducement" statute could result in a pastor being charged if an individual commits a violent crime against a homosexual after hearing a sermon about God's view of sexuality. Wouldn't you agree that protecting our precious freedoms of speech and religion are more important than ever?
To learn more about how "hate crimes" legislation threatens religious liberties, watch the special online video - - ->.
Tags:Bible, CitizenLink, gender identity, Hate Crime Bill, homosexuality, inducement statute, pastor, preaching, Religious Freedom, US Senate, videoTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.) speaking on the House floor: Now we've moved into the realm of gangster government. We have gangster government when the Federal Government has set up a new cartel and private businesses now have to go begging with their hand out to their local and hopefully well politically connected Congressman or their Senator so they can buy a peace offering for that local business. Is that the kind of country we are going to have in the future?
Tags:czars, gangster government, government corruption, imperial government, Michele Bachmann, videoTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
House Approves "Cap-and-Tax" Bill; Really a Cap & Theft Bill
Today, the House of Representatives passed HR 2454 the American Clean Energy and Security Act of 2009 (the "Cap and Trade Energy Bill"). H.R. 2454, also known as the called Waxman-Markey bill by a vote of 219 to 212. Unfortunately, as Bill Wilson, President, Americans for Limited Government President, expressed concern that the House "handed over the nation's energy policy to a radical faction that has but one agenda: to wreck the nation's economic standing in the world by making energy unaffordable, eliminating real jobs, and sealing away American natural resources from an economy that will be unable to grow without them. They have opened up a Pandora's box"
Myron Ebell, CEI Director of Energy and Global Warming Policy, said, "House Democratic leaders have managed to squeeze a 1510-page energy-rationing bill through the House on a 219 to 212 vote by filling it full of payoffs to special interests, not releasing the full text until 3 AM the night before the vote, and restricting debate to three hours."
As reported earlier, Cap and Trade will increase their costs and reduce their competitiveness, hurting our nation’s economy. These higher operating costs for utilities, oil companies, and industry will ultimately trickle down to individual Americans, resulting in an estimated 74% more for gasoline, 90% more for electricity, and 55% more on our natural gas bills. And that’s not the end of it. We’ll also pay more for every product that requires fossil fuels in its manufacture or transportation!
Congratulations to Minority Leader John Boehner (R-OH) and Rep. Joe Barton (R-TX) for their magnificent leadership against the bill. While a large number of democrats voted against the bill, eight Republicans voted for this monstrosity and provided the margin of victory. Their name are identified in italics in the following vote summary. The payoffs must have been enormous.
The bill now moves on to the Senate where the Senate is expected to write their own version of the bill. We can only hope the light shined by Boehner and others on the House democrats' secret late night shenanigans will awake the public. It is time to stop bills that affect all Americans from being rammed through Congress without adequate time for the public to read and reflect on the proposed actions for which they will have to pay and sacrifice let alone have their very lifestyles changed. It is also disappointing that Fox News channel rather than serving the public on this important travesty against the American people opted to do non-stop reporting on day old news of a dead rock star which will have no effect on America's future. Of course, maybe ratings are more important to them than reporting on an event which will change all Americans in the future.Tags:cap-and-trade, energy bill, HR 2454, voteTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
The House of Representatives is debating and scheduled to vote on H.R. 2454, the American Clean Energy and Security Act of 2009 (the "Cap and Trade Energy Bill"). H.R. 2454, also known as the called Waxman-Markey bill (Reps. Henry Waxman (D-CA) and Edward Markey (D-MA), will place a severe regulatory burden on American businesses, which will increase their costs and reduce their competitiveness, hurting our nation’s economy. These higher operating costs for utilities, oil companies, and industry will ultimately trickle down to individual Americans, resulting in an estimated 74% more for gasoline, 90% more for electricity, and 55% more on our natural gas bills. And that’s not the end of it. We’ll also pay more for every product that requires fossil fuels in its manufacture or transportation!
The Heritage Foundation estimates the impact. Not considering larger states like Ohio which rely on coal production, lets consider Arkansas. It is estimated that Cap and Trade will increase the cost of operations for Arkansas’ schools by over $63 million through higher electric rates and natural gas rates. This is an average of $232,000 per school district per year that can no longer be used to hire teachers or give teachers raises. These increased energy costs will require higher property tax rates for Arkansas property owners. The same can be said across the country. In addition, The Heritage Foundation estimates that cap-in-trade could increase the average American family’s energy bill by $1,500 annually!
Senate is in recess until Monday, July 6. When the Senate returns, it will resume consideration of the fiscal year 2010 Legislative Branch Appropriations bill, H.R. 2918.
Yesterday, the Senate
- disappointedly voted 62-35 to confirm anti-gun advocate Yale Law School Dean Howard Koh as legal advisor to the State Department. Senate Republicans attempted to kill the Koh nomination with a filibuster -- until eight of them crossed the aisle to help Democrats confirm Koh. The Senators were: Lamar Alexander (R-TN), Susan Collins (R-ME), Judd Gregg (R-NH), Orrin Hatch (R-UT), Richard Lugar (R-IN), Mel Martinez (R-FL), Olympia Snowe (R-ME) and George Voinovich (R-OH).
- voted 65-31 to table a motion by Sen. David Vitter (R-LA) to return the Legislative Branch Appropriations bill (H.R. 2918) to committee and have it reported back without a funding increase over the prior year, except for security funds.
- Republicans announced that Sen. John Thune of South Dakota was elected as Policy Committee Chairman and Sen. Lisa Murkowski of Alaska was elected Vice Chairwoman of the Republican Conference.
National Government Run Health Care: Yesterday, Senate Democrats spent a lot of time celebrating their self-proclaimed achievement of coming up with a health care reform bill that “only” costs $1 trillion.The New York Times reports, “[Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max] Baucus was upbeat. After a meeting of his committee on Thursday, he said, ‘The Congressional Budget Office now tells us we have options that would enable us to write a $1 trillion bill, fully paid for.’” And “[Senate Budget Committee Chairman Kent] Conrad said the Finance Committee had made ‘remarkable progress’ in whittling down the bill’s initial price tag of $1.6 trillion.”
Democrats seem awfully proud to now have a bill that they’ve whittled down to $1,000,000,000,000. Recall that the unprecedented stimulus bill passed in February cost $787 billion, without counting interest. And $1 trillion was about how much the entire federal government spent in 1987. One can hardly call a bill costing $1 trillion a bargain.
Though Baucus says the bill will be “fully paid for,” he’s given no specifics on how exactly that will happen. Indeed, The New York Timeswrites today, “It has become the trillion-dollar question: can President Obama find that much in spending cuts and tax increases to keep his campaign promise to overhaul the health care system, without adding to already huge deficits? Mr. Obama and the Democrats running Congress are deeply split over the possibilities.”
The Times notes that a couple of the options identified are:
- to “[l]imit income-tax deductions for high earners.” But “Democratic leaders immediately objected that that would hurt charities, universities and other entities dependent on tax-deductible donations, as well as taxpayers in high-tax cities and states, including New York City and other places home to Democratic leaders.”
- to “[i]ncrease behavior-changing ‘sin taxes.’” According to the NYT, “Congressional analyses show that more than $200 billion over 10 years could be collected from new or increased taxes on sugared soft drinks, tobacco products and alcoholic beverages implicated in common health problems like obesity and cancer. . . . The government could raise $61.5 billion with an additional alcoholic beverage tax that would mean about 40 cents more for a fifth of liquor, 48 cents for a six-pack of beer and 49 cents on a bottle of wine.” However, “[e]ach of these taxes is often criticized as regressive, meaning it would disproportionately affect lower-income people.”
And The Washington Post adds, “The [Democrats’ proposal] also is expected to include just over $300 billion in new taxes on health insurance benefits that millions get from their employers.” Yet, The Post writes, “Many Democrats oppose the new tax, and President Obama campaigned against the idea. But lawmakers said they could identify few acceptable alternatives.”
While Democrats may be celebrating spending only $1 trillion, taxpayers will not be pleased with that bill. And of course, in the end it very doubtful that this actually “make health care more affordable and accessible but which [won’t] force people off their current plans.” All we will have left is Defective National Government Run Health Care!Tags:Barack Obama, cap-and-trade, health care, increased taxes, nationalized health care, US Congress, US House, US Senate, Washington D.C.To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
How do the Obama deficits compare with past presidents? And how did the national debt get so big anyway. This video tries to answer those questions by looking at the debt as a road trip and seeing how fast different administrations have been traveling. The National Debt Road Trip video -
Tags:Barack Obama, debt, deficit, National Debt, political, videoTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Action Alert:Tomorrow, the U.S. House is scheduled to vote on H.R. 2454, the American Clean Energy and Security Act of 2009 (the "Cap and Trade Energy Bill") which could fundamentally alter the American economy, dramatically affect the climate, and have huge implications for our national security. But, most representatives do not know what's in the 1, 201 page bill due. Cap and Trade will place a severe regulatory burden on American businesses, which will increase their costs and reduce their competitiveness, hurting our nation’s economy. These higher operating costs for utilities, oil companies, and industry will ultimately trickle down to individual Americans, resulting in an estimated 74% more for gasoline, 90% more for electricity, and 55% more on our natural gas bills. And that’s not the end of it. We’ll also pay more for every product that requires fossil fuels in its manufacture or transportation! Obama will be pushing today for adoption of this bill with empty platitudes and self-professed knowledge that apparently he considers beyond our intelligence. We cannot afford this bill. Read More & Take Action
Note: a more reasonable energy bill has been introduced by Rep. Mike Ross (D-AR) which can be studied hopefully if Cap-in-Trade is defeated. More on this in future posts.
Senate Republicans will meet for leadership elections to choose a new Policy Committee chairman and a Vice-Chairman of the Republican Conference. Today, Sen. McConnell and the other members of the GOP leadership will hold a press conference to announce the results of the elections.
Yesterday, the Senate voted 65-31 to invoke cloture on Koh’s nomination. Today, the Senate resumed consideration of the nomination of Yale Law School Dean Howard Koh to be legal advisor to the State Department. If all post-cloture time is used, a vote on Koh’s nomination will come at 5:30 PM today.
National Government Run Health Care: Speaking on the Senate floor this morning, Sen. McConnell said, “Americans are insisting that members of Congress work together on reforms that make health care more affordable and accessible but which don’t force people off their current plans or add to an already-staggering national debt. And yet the Democrat plan now being rushed through the Senate would do just the opposite. It would force millions of Americans off of their health care plans and bury our nation deeper and deeper in debt.”
The New York Times reports, “Senators struggled Wednesday with the possibility that in offering subsidized health insurance to millions of individuals and families, they could inadvertently speed the erosion of employer-provided coverage, which they want to preserve.” The Times notes a key Democrat senator airing concerns about this. “Senator Blanche Lincoln, Democrat of Arkansas, said preserving employer-sponsored insurance ‘needs to be a huge objective.” Studies by the CBO and the Lewin Group have shown that millions of people are likely to have their private insurance dropped by their employers if there is a government-run plan available.
Democrat Senate Budget Comm. Chair Kent Conrad acknowledged the possibility to The Times. “‘Even with an individual mandate,’ Mr. Conrad said, ‘if there is not some requirement for employers, you will see a drifting of people to the insurance exchange and to government subsidies. That will increase the cost.’” As the NYT explains, “Employers who do not provide coverage might have to pay penalties or contribute to a government fund.” At ABC Special health care promo, President Obama said, “The other thing we’re doing is we’re saying to employers, to provide them a disincentive for just dumping people out of existing plans, is there’s going to be a ‘play or pay’ provision.” But The New York Times points out, “Small businesses are less likely to provide health insurance than larger businesses. So any penalty for not providing insurance could affect them more than other employers.”
But while Democrat senators were expressing concerns about the impact of a government-run health plan on Americans’ existing insurance arrangements, Roll Call reports that “House liberals are warning the Senate, Democratic leaders and President Barack Obama that a government-run insurance option must be included in any health reform bill, or else the powerful bloc will vote it down.”
Cost issues are also important in the health care debate. A group of governors met with President Obama yesterday and according to The Washington Post, “The governors were adamant that the restructuring of the health-care system not push new costs on states.
Sen. McConnell has comments that, “Democrats have also promised their health plan will be paid for and won’t add to the deficit. But the facts just don’t add up. Right now, just one section of the HELP bill would spend 1.3 trillion dollars. It’s not plausible that this wouldn’t add to the deficit, which has already swelled by more than a trillion dollars, thanks to bailouts and stimulus money. . . . When Democrats predict their health care plan won’t cause people to lose their current insurance and won’t add to the national debt, Americans are right to be skeptical.”
However, very little discussion in Congress is focusing the morality of the Government determining what services a person can or should receive and what relationship each person will have with our doctors. Warner Todd Hustonnotes President Obama in his ABC Special health care promo yesterday stepped across the threshold and now Senators and the public need to address the following. "It appeared that Obama said we should just let them die or suffer because they aren’t worth the effort. . . . Obama said . . . that a way to save health care costs is to abandon the sort of care that “evidence shows is not necessarily going to improve” the patient’s health. He went on to say that he had personal familiarity with such a situation . . . But who is it that will present the “evidence” that will “show” that further care is futile? Are we to believe that Obama expects individual doctors will make that decision in his bold new government controlled health care future?"
When the government controls heath care, the government (not the doctor) will determine what the patient will receive. Remember the old adage, they who controls the gold, makes the rules. Just ask older retired military on Tricare and Veterans relying on the VA for their medical care. Without approval, treatment cannot be rendered unless the patient can afford to pay in full and finds another source. Under nationalized health care, that option will eventually be denied. Maybe that is why Congress is opting out and the Unions are pushing to not be under the Federal rules of nationalized health care.
The comment by Obama in his position as president is of very great signal concern. If carried to fruition in a national health care program, it will effect both the elderly and all the infirmed. And, eventually "special" health care rules may then be applied to the "economically distressed." The Obama care program in the long run could in fact identify those most in need for other alternative actions or treatment as related by Obama. Consider history; this road was followed by Germany as they worked to control their economic problems. Eventually to reduce medical costs, the German government went to the extreme step of euthanizing their elderly and infirmed. All of this was before they proceeded down the road to the horrors that we have read about. Nationalized health care is not appropriate in a free society and in the end will be hazardous to both our health and our very lives. Tags:Barack Obama, cap-and-trade, health care, morality, nationalized health care, US Congress, US House, US Senate, Washington D.C.To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Action Alert:Friday, the House of Representatives is scheduled to vote on H.R. 2454, the American Clean Energy and Security Act of 2009 (the "Cap and Trade Energy Bill") that aims to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by giving the federal government the power to limit the amount of oil, gasoline, coal, and other fossil fuels used by American utilities and industry. This is a bill that could fundamentally alter the American economy, dramatically affect the climate, and have huge implications for our national security. But, right now no one knows what's in the bill or how it came to be.
H.R. 2454, also known as the called Waxman-Markey bill (Reps. Henry Waxman (D-CA) and Edward Markey (D-MA), will place a severe regulatory burden on American businesses, which will increase their costs and reduce their competitiveness, hurting our nation’s economy. These higher operating costs for utilities, oil companies, and industry will ultimately trickle down to individual Americans, resulting in an estimated 74% more for gasoline, 90% more for electricity, and 55% more on our natural gas bills. And that’s not the end of it. We’ll also pay more for every product that requires fossil fuels in its manufacture or transportation!
The Waxman-Markey cap-and-trade plan will also grow the size and cost of government by requiring the Environmental Protection Agency to establish a greenhouse gas (GHG) registry, create a GHG emission allowance transfer system, and set emission allowances from 2012-2050. The bill would force carbon-emitting industries coal, oil, gasoline, and natural gas to purchase carbon permits that would reduce in supply over the next decade. The bill aims to reduce industrial emissions of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases by 17% by 2020 and 83% by 2050. In reality, this cap-and-trade plan is nothing more than a hidden tax that The Heritage Foundation has estimated could increase the average American family’s energy bill by $1,500 annually!
This army of new bureaucrats will eventually control every aspect of industrial, commercial, and individual energy use. What’s more, the cap-and-trade program will necessarily be ripe for political favoritism and corruption, as politicians and bureaucrats manipulate the system for favored industries.
In addition, our electedd Represntatives have NOT been able to read this "secret bill." The Sunlight Foundation a nonpartisan transparency group lambasted the secrecy of the bill. They point out that last week, H.R. 2454, was 946 pages long. Over the weekend, it ballooned to 1,201 pages with no explanation for how or why. It is currently only available online at the House Rules Committee, and is reported as "text of the bill to be introduced." Sunlight Foundation Engagement Director Jake Brewer said, "The fastest speed-readers and the most intelligent minds can't make informed decisions with that much time. How can Congress?" He continued, "The problem here is the bill wasn't developed in the open in a committee, so no one--including those members of Congress not on the Energy Committee-knows how this latest version was created."
What makes the bill even worse is that the science behind cap-and-trade is contrived and misleading. The whole premise of global 'warming' is based upon flawed computer models that predict climate change, and are not based on actual observable data that can be confirmed. A study from APS Physics, "Climate Sensitivity Revisited,"proves beyond any doubt that the UN International Panel on Climate Change's computer models that 'predict' climate change greatly overstate the impact of carbon emissions. In other words, 'man-made' climate change is not real, and yet Congress is ready to reorganize the entire energy sector around the idea.
Climatologist Chip Knappenberger has estimated that the 83 percent reduction in greenhouse gas emissions mandated under Waxman-Markey by 2050 will result in a drop in climate temperature of only nine-hundredths of 1 degree Fahrenheit. That’s equivalent to just two years of avoided global warming. In short, HR the Waxman-Markey bill will achieve virtually no environmental pay-offs, while imposing huge costs on our businesses, our economy, and each and every one of us as a taxpayer and consumer.
This bill shoots each of us in the foot. This bill was rejected last year, and should again be rejected this year, because it's an economy-killer. It will cost jobs, it will cost progress, and it will cost prosperity. We can’t afford this bill, especially when it means nothing in return but higher costs. The Democrat Majority has announced that amendments to this unreadable to date secret bill can be made no later than 9:30 a.m. on Thursday, June 25th. We expect a floor vote to occur on Friday , so please . . .
Call or email your U.S. Representative and Tell them to vote NO on HR 2454 the American Clean Energy and Security Act of 2009 (the Waxman-Markey cap-and-trade bill)! You may send communications to your Representative through one of the following online : - Citizen's Against Government Waste - Freedom Works OR Call (866) 928-3035 for the House switchboard where you can be transferred to your Representative’s office. Try (866) 928-0525 if you get a busy signal. Tags:action alert, cap-and-trade, carbon tax, HR 2454, US HouseTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Gary Bauer, Campaign for Working Families: This morning I received an email from our friends at National Review that contained an excerpt from a CNN interview with one of the thousands of demonstrators in Tehran. This demonstrator, Mohammed, gives his opinion on what he thinks the United States and the rest of the world should do regarding Iran. Consider this exchange and how it contrasts with President Obama’s desire for dialogue and diplomacy based on "mutual respect":
MOHAMMED: "Americans, European Union, international community, this government is definitely not elected by the majority of Iranians. So it’s illegal. Do not recognize it. Stop trading with them. Impose much more sanctions against them. My message, to the international community, especially I’m addressing President Obama directly -- how can a government that doesn’t recognize its people’s rights and represses them brutally and mercilessly have nuclear activities? This government is a huge threat to global peace. Will a wise man give a sharp dagger to an insane person? We need your help international community. Don’t leave us alone."
Mohammed gets it. Why is it so hard for our “experts” at the State Department and the White House? Diplomacy and appeasement do not dissuade dictators. President Obama is an impressive orator, but no one -- not even Barack Hussein Obama -- is going to talk a Holocaust-denying madman out of his desire to "wipe Israel off the map." Words will not stop his work to destroy the "Great Satan," which is how the Islamic radicals in Iran refer to the United States. The West must confront the reality that Mohammed is warning against. We need a serious plan of action, not just words. And here too Mohammed has a suggestion:
REPORTER: "Mohammed, what do you think the international community should do besides sanctions?"
MOHAMMED: "This regime is really dependent on importing gasoline. More than 85% of Iran’s gasoline is imported from foreign countries. I think the international communities must sanction exporting gasoline to Iran and that might shut down the government."
The president should also rescind his invitation for Iranian diplomats to attend July 4th parties at U.S. embassies around the world. Obama dodged a question today about his "hot dog diplomacy" when asked by Fox News reporter Major Garrett if the Iranian government representatives were still welcome. And President Obama should immediately restore the funding that he cut for pro-democracy efforts in Iran.
Slowly Finding His Voice: As you know, we and other conservatives have been urging President Obama to speak up in support of the Iranian people who are daring to oppose the brutal Islamofascist regime that runs their country. Slowly the president is finding his voice, but it’s been a very frustrating exercise -- like trying to get a two year-old to eat his vegetables. Meanwhile heads were getting cracked, dissidents were being jailed and innocent bystanders were being shot. Here is an excerpt of the president’s comments today at the White House:
"The United States and the international community have been appalled and outraged by the threats, the beatings and imprisonments of the last few days. I strongly condemn these unjust actions… I’ve made it clear that the United States respects the sovereignty of the Islamic Republic of Iran and is not interfering with Iran’s affairs. . . . [S]ome in the Iranian government, in particular, are … accusing the United States and others in the West of instigating protests over the elections. These accusations are patently false. They’re an obvious attempt to distract people from what is truly taking place within Iran’s borders. . . .
"In 2009, no iron fist is strong enough to shut off the world from bearing witness to peaceful protests of justice. . . . above all, we’ve seen courageous women stand up to the brutality and threats, and we’ve experienced the searing image of a woman bleeding to death on the streets. While this loss is raw and extraordinarily painful, we also know this: those who stand up for justice are always on the right side of history."
Tags:Barack Obama, CNN, elections, fair elections, Gary Bauer, Iran, protestTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
The All Barack Channel (ABC) sold the "Dr. Obama's Swamp Root Snake Oil," while denying conservative commercials identifying facts about BHO nationalized health care - socialized medicine. Below, Carter Lewis reports on on an example of what real socialized medicine, i.e. Snake Oil," looks like:
Tough break for Barack Obama. Just when he is merrily rolling along peddling his socialized stealthcare as it were the most potent elixir since Violet Blossom’s Swamp Root snake oil, along comes NY Times with a decidedly sordid tale about government medicine gone awry. And since ABC (Always Barack Channel) wasn’t about to interrupt its infomercial to reveal the full facts of the matter, let’s take a quick look behind the Barakathon.
Those who can’t wait to turn their lives and limbs over to Big Government’s pseudo-sawbones need first to pay a visit to the government-run Veterans Administration hospital in Philadelphia, PA. But, first, a word of warning: if you’re a guy, leave the family jewels at home. Because, if you think the Liberty Bell is irreparably damaged … well, you ain’t seen nothin’ yet.
One of the most popular (if I can use that word) procedures for treating prostate cancer is the implantation of dozens of radioactive seeds to attack and destroy the cancerous cells. True, it’s drastic. But, it sure beats a long-drawn, painful death. Unless, of course, they plant the radioactive cells in the wrong organ. Which is exactly what Dr. Gary D. Kao did at the VA Medical Center in Philadelphia, citadel of socialized medicine. Obama should be proud. In fact, he should have covered it in his ABC infomercial – perhaps while waving his arms and shouting, “But, wait, there’s more!”
You see, Dr. Kao implanted the 40 radioactive seeds not in the patient’s ailing prostate, but in his perfectly healthy bladder. So much for Tenet One of the Hippocratic Oath – “First, do no harm.”
But, wait, there’s more! Of course, the ever vigilant federal bureaucrats in charge of VA stealthcare (coming soon to a hospital near you) knew that this probably wasn’t a good idea. So they investigated—and promptly allowed the doctor to doctor his report to match the number of seeds in the prostate.
This, naturally, did little for the patient. So, like any conscientious government employee, Dr. Kao decided to cover his tracks by doing over what he hadn’t done right —whereupon he planted the seeds in the patient’s rectum. Which, apparently for the good doctor was “close enough for government work”—since this time, he didn’t even bother filing a report.
But, wait, there’s even more! With the eager acquiescence of his government overlords, Dr. Kao was on a roll.
Two years later, Dr. Kao rewrote another surgical plan after once again putting half the seeds in the wrong organ. And, once again, the socialized stealthcare regulators did not object. Perhaps the reason they did not object is that they had long since become past masters at doing well what bureaucrats do best—absolutely nothing. As the NY Times story reveals:
“Had the government responded more aggressively, it might have uncovered a rogue cancer unit at the hospital, one that operated with virtually no outside scrutiny and botched 92 of 116 cancer treatments over a span of more than six years -- and then kept quiet about it, according to interviews with investigators, government officials and public records.
“The team continued implants for a year even though the equipment that measured whether patients received the proper radiation dose was broken. The radiation safety committee at the Veterans Affairs hospital knew of this problem but took no action, records show.”
I have a distinct feeling that any guy reading this piece is by now already squirming around in his chair, praying diligently that the Avodart, Cipro, Doryx, or Floxin works well if his prostate ever needs it. Because, clearly, Obama’s socialized stealthcare won’t. And for the women: let’s just say that if you have even the remotest idea of remaining sexually active with your hubby in your Golden Years, pray equally hard that Dr. Obama gets his license lifted.
Here’s the bottom line: socialized medicine doesn’t work. Whenever and wherever it rears its malignant head, it is poorly conceived, pathetically organized, and callously administered. If the VA is the microcosm (or the MVA, Amtrak, or the U.S. Congress, for that matter), imagine the horror of the macrocosm.
It was said that Violet Blossom was the Queen of Pitch Doctors.” Barack Obama may be the “King of Pitch Presidents.” But if the American people end up catching what he’s pitching, the result may be the most deadly medical crisis since the flu epidemic of 1918. And all the ABC snake oil in the world isn’t going to cure that devastating blight.
Tags:ABC, Barack Obama, health care, nationalized health care, political cartoon, Socialized medicine, William WarrenTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
On Friday, the House approved four articles of impeachment on allegations of sexual assault and lying to Justice Department and court officials against Judge Samuel Kent of the Southern District of Texas, with no dissenting votes. The AP reportedthat "Kent pleaded guilty to lying to judicial investigators about the sexual assaults of two women who worked for him and is serving a 33-month prison sentence. Kent has said he would resign in June 2010, allowing him to draw his $174,000 annual salary another year. Federal judges are appointed for life. Lawmakers can only force Kent out of office by convicting him in a Senate trial on the impeachment charges."
Today, The Senate began impeachment proceedings after the House impeachment managers presented the articles of impeachment to the Senate. Senators were then sworn for the impeachment proceedings. A committee was appointed to consider the evidence, consisting of Sens. McCaskill (D-MO), Klobuchar (D-MN), Whitehouse (D-RI), Tom Udall (D-NM), Shaheen (D-NH), Kaufman (D-DE), Martinez (R-FL), DeMint (R-SC), Barrasso (R-WY), Wicker (R-MS), Johanns (R-NE), and Risch (R-ID).
The Senate then began consideration of the nomination of Yale Law School Dean Howard Koh to be legal advisor to the State Department. The Senate voted 65-31 to invoke cloture on his nomination this morning. Warning: Koh supports gun control on a global scale. Recommend gun owners contact their Senators and insist that they vote AGAINST this anti-gun extremist. Review prior Action Alert by the GOA.
Republicans are seeking to reach an agreement with Democrat Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid on moving to the fiscal 2010 Legislative Branch appropriations bill later in the day.
National Government Run Health Care: At President Obama’s press conference yesterday, he was asked about his prior assurances that under his health care plan, which would include a government-run insurance plan, Americans who like their current health insurance would be able to keep it. In hisspeech to the American Medical Association last week, Obama said, “no matter how we reform health care, we will keep this promise to the American people: If you like your doctor, you will be able to keep your doctor, period. If you like your health care plan, you'll be able to keep your health care plan, period.”
But Salon.com reported, “Questioned about an earlier promise that no one who was happy with their current insurance provided by their employer and wanted to keep it would be forced to switch, Obama had to concede that wasn't really true.” And The Hill pointed out, “Obama seemed to concede for the first time that some employers will opt for public insurance, a major criticism of free-market enthusiasts who see the president's plan as an inevitable step toward government-run healthcare.”
Indeed, last week the AP noted that “no president could guarantee such a pledge.” Non-partisan studiesfrom both the Congressional Budget Office and the Lewin Group concluded that millions were likely to lose their private health coverage with the institution of a government-run plan.
Health care insurers are warning about the very same thing. The Wall Street Journal reports that America's Health Insurance Plans, “[t]he nation's largest health insurer trade group” sent a letter to Sen. Ted Kennedy (D-MA), chairman of the Senate HELP committee, which is writing a bill to include a government-run insurance plan. According to The Journal, the letter “states that a [government-run] public health insurance option ‘would dismantle employer-based coverage, significantly increase costs for those who remain in private coverage, and add additional liabilities to the federal budget.’”
This is something that Americans are clearly concerned about, as evidenced by a new Washington Post-ABC News Poll. The Post writes that “there is broad public anxiety about the potential impact of reform legislation” and “[m]ost respondents are ‘very concerned’ that health-care reform would lead to higher costs, lower quality, fewer choices, a bigger deficit, diminished insurance coverage and more government bureaucracy.” The Post goes on to explain, “Part of the reason so many are nervous about future changes is a fear they may lose what they currently have. More than eight in 10 said they are satisfied with the quality of care they now receive and relatively content with their own current expenses, and worry about future rising costs cuts across party lines and is amplified in the weak economy.” And an ABC News analysis notes that in the poll, “Fifty-eight percent don't buy President Obama's pledge that reform can occur without forcing people to make undesired changes in their current coverage.”Tags:Barack Obama, health care, Howard Koh, Impeachment, nationalized health care, US Congress, US House, US Senate, Washington D.C.To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Declaring that "Government Waste Has Got To Go!", the Hampton Roads Tea Party rolled out its porta-potty protest. Tea Party Patriots loaded "named" johns onto their pickups and trailers and toured Virginia Beach and Chesapeake. the are simply giving taxpayers an outlet for their frustrations with government. "They are all acting like kings and queens in D.C., and we just thought we would make it official and give them a throne. Every time you go, you can send a message."
The following are just a few of the names 34 currently under consideration:
* Nancy Pelosi's Throne
* McCain, John
* U.S. Congress – Our #2 Problem
* ACORN john (Always Cr-ppy, Offensive, Rotten, Noxious)
* I.R.S. john – Eliminate it!
* "Porky Little Projects" john
* Royal Pain in the Tax
* Office of Tim Geitner's Accountant
* Harry Reid's Throne
* Eric "toilet paper" Holder
* Marxist Government Think Tank
* Federal Depository
"The names are of people who have horribly abused taxpayer money or people who have betrayed us. . . . Some people like Nancy Waters, Harry Reid, Nancy Pelosi and the Murtha john and the Kerry john were pretty self-evident, we felt." Hurd said the campaign has chosen not to use references to President Obama. . . . "He is the president, and we respect the office."
"For those interested in avoiding being on the 'honor' roll on the Don't Flush U.S. site, you can do so by promoting free enterprise, staying within the boundaries of the Constitution, self-limiting your political career by not running for eternal office, avoiding excessive regulation of liberties, exercising good governance, going on a permanent pork-fast, . . ."
SeeTea PartyPatriotsfor a lists more than 400 events by state. Tags:Harry Reid, John Murtha, Nancy Pelosi, Port-a-potty, TEA Parties, tea partyTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Alert: Senate to Vote on Anti-gun Radical Howard Koh
Sen. Reid filed cloture on the nomination of Yale Law School Dean Howard Koh to be legal advisor to the State Department. While Koh's nomination has been delayed largely because of Second Amendment concerns, a cloture vote is now expected on Wednesday. Warning: Koh supports gun control on a global scale. It is imperative that gun owners and supporters of the Constitution and the second amendment contact their Senators and insist that they vote AGAINST this anti-gun extremist.
by Larry Pratt, Gun Owners of America: Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid has scheduled a Wednesday vote on Yale Law School Dean Howard Koh to be legal advisor to the State Department, Koh supports gun control on a global scale. While advocates of the Second Amendment have come to expect that appointees of President Barack Obama would be hostile to the rights of gun owners, the president's nominee for legal advisor to the State Department reaches a whole new level of anti-gun extremism.
Harold Hongju Koh served at the State Department under the Clinton administration. He is a self-described "trans-nationalist" who believes that our laws -- and our Constitution -- should be brought into conformity with international agreements. Koh told a Cleveland audience, "If you want to be in the global environment, you have to play by the global rules."
Koh's positions treat our constitutional law as if it were a mere local ordinance on the greater world stage. This is of particular concern to gun owners at a time when the U.S. Congress is under pressure from President Obama to ratify an international gun control treaty with countries in the western hemisphere. That treaty, known by its Spanish acronym CIFTA, would likely serve as a forerunner to a more extensive United Nations initiative, the "Program of Action to Prevent, Combat and Eradicate the Illicit Trade in Small Arms and Light Weapons in all its Aspects."
The Bush administration, under the leadership of UN Ambassador John Bolton, rejected the small arms treaty. Bolton plainly told the world that the United States will not accept a gun control document that violates our Constitutional right to bear arms. Harold Koh commented that Bolton was being "needlessly provocative."
In a paper entitled "A world drowning in guns," Koh maintains that a civil society cannot exist with broad gun ownership: "Guns kill civil society," he said.
Koh is eager to assume his post at the State Department, having lamented that there is only so much that can be done from the outside to push gun control treaties, and that ultimately we need people like him in positions of power. The chief lawyer for the State Department is just the position someone like him needs to put his agenda into play.
ACTION: It is imperative that gun owners and supporters of the Constitution and the second amendment Contact your senators! Urge them to oppose Harold Hongju Koh's nomination to the State Department. You can also use the Gun Owners Legislative Action Center to send your Senators the pre-written message.Tags:2nd Amendment, action alert, anti-guns, CIFTA, GOA, Gun Owners of America, gun owners rights, Howard Koh, Larry Pratt, nominee, United NationsTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Yesterday, the Senate rejected the Dorgan substitute amendment to S.1023. Also, Sen. Reid filed cloture on the nomination of Yale Law School Dean Howard Koh to be legal advisor to the State Department. While Koh's nomination has been delayed largely because of Second Amendment concerns, a cloture vote is now expected on Wednesday. Warning: Koh supports gun control on a global scale. Recommend gun owners contact their Senators and insist that they vote AGAINST this anti-gun extremist.
Today, Senate Republicans will begin a series of speeches this week on Judge Sonia Sotomayor’s nomination to the Supreme Court. Speaking will be Senate GOP Leader Mitch McConnell, ranking Judiciary Committee Republican, Jeff Sessions (R-AL) and Judiciary Committee member Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX). Later today, the Senate could take up the fiscal 2010 Legislative Branch appropriations bill or could return to S. 1023, the tourism bill (to create a privately run nonprofit corporation to market the United States as a travel destination abroad).
National Government Run Health Care: As President Obama prepares for yet another press event to attempt to sell his health care plan, the event the White House put on yesterday announcing an agreement by pharmaceutical companies to commit $80 billion to reducing prescription drug costs is worth closer scrutiny.
Roll Call wrote of the announcement, “[W]hile the spending by the drugmakers will certainly assist some seniors, it is unclear how it would directly benefit the health reform effort by defraying the cost of providing a new government insurance option. The new spending will aid those who already have insurance — namely, Medicare.” Other publications had similar trouble figuring out just how this supposed saving was supposed to have any effect on Obama’s goal to cover all uninsured Americans. The Wall Street Journal pondered, “It’s unclear, however, how much of the expected $80 billion in savings over 10 years will go toward paying for the [president’s] proposed health-care overhaul.”
However the The Washington Post reached the correct conclusion about the announcement: “Although the agreement represents a fraction of the total cost of health-care reform, it has been managed for maximum public relations exposure.” Managing an announcement about health care savings for maximum public relations exposure with little substance to back it up should sound very familiar to those watching the White House’s campaign for President Obama’s health plan.
Back in May, Obama held an event announcing that various health care groups were committed to reducing health care spending by $2 trillion over the next decade. The Wall Street Journal pegged the announcement for what it was: “This vague, probably illusory promise isn't much as a matter of policy, but it is a major political development in what is the Obama Presidency's No. 1 priority.” And The New York Times reported that “[h]ospitals and insurance companies said . . . that President Obama had substantially overstated their promise earlier . . . to reduce the growth of health spending.” And The Washington Post editorialized, “None of the interest groups signed up for a specific number; no one is saying who will sacrifice what, or how much. . . . What would make up the substance of the plan? That remains to be seen. How would the private sector be held accountable for this promise to reduce costs? That, too, remains to be seen.”
And illusory promises haven’t just happened on health care. In the midst of criticism for his $3.5 trillion budget proposal, Obama announced plans for $17 billion in budget cuts in early May. At the time, McClatchy called it “a tiny amount for such a big budget” and The Washington Post explained, “The proposed cuts, if adopted by Congress, would not actually reduce government spending. Obama’s budget would increase overall spending; any savings from the program terminations and reductions would be shifted to the president’s priorities.”
Writing for the Chicago Tribune’s The Swamp blog, Mark Silva explained the exercise: “While serving up a record new budget, with record deficits, portraying the image of fiscal prudence is essential to selling it all to the public.” As reported yesterday, "Michael Barone detailed that 'Obama likes to execute long-range strategies but suffers from cognitive dissonance when new facts render them inappropriate. And, he does not seem to care much about the details of policy.' Based on Barone’s observation, Obama may not be concerned that the devils in the details of his programs are bankrupting the country, destroying the institutions that have made America great . . ." Clearly, the White House has a pattern of rolling out announcements of big savings for PR purposes, but they all seem to have details. Keep an eye out for this pattern to continue as debate on health care and a carbon cap-and-trade bill moves forward. Tags:Barack Obama, health care, nationalized health care, US Congress, US House, US Senate, Washington D.C.To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Again, many of you may have received an e-mail warning about "SB-2099," a bill that would supposedly require you to report all your guns on your income tax return every April 15. Although April 15th is past, the email continues on almost with a life of its own. Please delete it!
"SB-2099" IS A HOAX AND DOES NOT EXIST!
Like many rumors, there's just a grain of truth - but that grain is rests in history. This hoax email recycles an aspect of an old 2000 email alert which wasn't accurate when it was new. In 2000, there was a U.S. Senate bill with that number that would have taxed handguns. It was introduced by anti-gun Sen. Jack Reed (D-RI), and it would have included handguns under the National Firearms Act’s tax and registration scheme. This had nothing to do with anyone’s Form 1040. Fortunately, S. 2099 died without any action by the Senate.
While we need to be vigilant regarding all threats against the 2nd Amendment and other Constitution rights, we also need to be vigilant about the false rumors which dilute the focus on the real threats and may actually have been started to embarrass right minded people. Yes, there are many threats and we and others will attempt to alert you about these threats to your freedoms. But check out everything.
For general information on bills and to track bills in Congress, an excellent free nonpartisan source is Open Congress. For updates on real threats against 2nd Amendment rights, check out Gun Owners of America (GOA).Tags:2nd Amendment, congress, email, Gun Owners of America, gun rights, hoax, Open Congress, taxation, US CongressTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Gary Bauer, Campaign for Working Families: President Obama struggled this weekend to catch up with Congress and the American people in voicing his support for freedom in Iran and expressing moral outrage for the oppressive tactics of the tyrants in Tehran. Friday, the House voted 405-to-1 to condemn the regime and support the Iranian people seeking liberty. Hours later, the Senate unanimously approved a similar resolution. Senators McCain (R-AZ) and Lieberman (ID-CT) issued a joint statement Friday, which read, "By acting now, Congress sent an unmistakable message of support to the courageous Iranian people at a critical moment in their history." By staying silent, the Obama White House had been sending a message of support to the mullahs.
Saturday, the White House released a statement from the president. Here is an excerpt:
"The Iranian government must understand that the world is watching. We mourn each and every innocent life that is lost. We call on the Iranian government to stop all violent and unjust actions against its own people. The universal rights to assembly and free speech must be respected, and the United States stands with all who seek to exercise those rights. …If the Iranian government seeks the respect of the international community, it must respect the dignity of its own people and govern through consent, not coercion."
While Obama’s rhetoric is getting better, his policy toward outlaw states like Iran is way behind reality. He still thinks he can negotiate with Ahmadinejad to end his nuclear weapons program. By the way, that would be a form of “meddling” that would only serve to offer legitimacy to the Holocaust-denying dictator. Meanwhile, a North Korean ship continues on its way, while suspected of carrying contraband materials in violation of U.N. sanctions. What will Obama do?
There’s another area where Obama is hopelessly behind and Big Media won’t tell you about this. For years, the Bush Administration spent money to promote pro-democracy movements in Iran. And now, just as those efforts are beginning to bear fruit, what does the Obama Administration do? The president cut the funding for those programs in his first budget to Congress.
And if you don't think that it matters one iota if Iran becomes a free nation or if the Islamic fanatics currently running Iran are allowed to develop nuclear weapons, consider the latest statement from Al Qaeda: "God willing, the nuclear weapons [in Pakistan] will not fall into the hands of the Americans, and the Mujahideen would take them and use them against the Americans." If we ignore reality and pretend the rest of the world doesn’t matter, our next 9/11 won’t be 3,000 dead, but hundreds of thousands. Tags:Barack Hussein Obama, Barack Obama, elections, fair elections, Gary Bauer, Iran, nuclear weaponTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Obama on Socialized Medicine - "I've Got My Finger On The Pulse"
by William Warren:
Bill Smith, ARRA Editor: Isn't it amazing how William Warren expresses so much with his artistic talent? If you believe President Obama has got his finger on the on the pulse of socialized medicine, I got a deal for you - some land without snakes, gators and other critters in the Florida Everglades. As identified by Michael Barone, "Obama likes to execute long-range strategies but suffers from cognitive dissonance when new facts render them inappropriate. And, he does not seem to care much about the details of policy." Based on Barone’s observation, Obama may not be concerned that the devils in the details of his programs are bankrupting the country, destroying the institutions that have made America great (and a whole lot better in general terms than the rest of the world), and eliminating the free choices and individual liberty that Americans have had prior to the his administration.
The pulse of America public is racing with the excitement of fear! It races just like the pulse of a victim as the fingers of an abuser who has authority over them reaches out to them again. They feel caged and without the freedom to escape from the person whom they previously trusted. In this situation, it is the President who promised economic recovery, future financial security, more employment, a return of troops to America, and more. But instead, we see expanding government spending, rising national debt in the trillions of dollars, a nationalized auto industry, a nationalized banking, appointments of unaccountable CZARS, expanding military operations, establishment of a civilian defense force, expanding unemployment, threatened release of former terrorists into the United States, threatening of business owners and corporate officers, doctors being threatened with removal of protection in conscious situations, and impending expansion of control and restrictions of individual freedoms and choices.
Now, Obama purposes nationalized health care or at least, the precursors to nationalized health care / socialized medicine. The American pulse is racing Mr. President. It is racing in constant fear of your administration. Tags:Barack Obama, Bill Smith, health care, Michael Barone, nationalized health care, Obama, political cartoon, public opinion, Socialized medicine, William WarrenTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
The Senate will reconvene at 2 PM today and will resume consideration of S. 1023 - "a privately run nonprofit corporation to market the United States as a travel destination abroad.” At 5:30, senators will vote on cloture on the Dorgan substitute amendment to S. 1023.
Iran: Since last Tuesday when President Obama expressed his unwillingness to speak in support of the Iranian people protest for honest elections, Iran has ordered foreign reporters to leave their country and has carried out massive oppression of the Iranian protestors (who are unarmed) and have even killed women. On Friday, both the Senate and House spoke on behalf of the American people. The House passed a resolution expressing support for all Iranian citizens who embrace the values of freedom, human rights, civil liberties, and rule of law [H. Res. 560, introduced by Reps. Berman (D-CA) & Pence (R-IN)] by a vote of 405 to 1. Libertarian Rep. Ron Paul (R-TX) cast the sole opposing vote (2 vote present & 25 people were absent). The Senate passed by unanimous consent resolutions “expressing support for all Iranian citizens who embrace the values of freedom, human rights, civil liberties, and rule of law” [S. Res. 193 introduced by Sens. McCain (R-AZ), Brownback (R-KS), Bunning (R-KY), Cornyn (R-TX), Graham (R-SC), Kyl (R-AZ), Liberman (I-CT)] and calling for freedom of speech and of the press in Iran [S. Res. 196 introduced by Sens. Kaufman (D-DE), Bunning (R-KY) and Kyl (R-AZ)].
National Government Run Health Care: A headline in today’s edition of Roll Call summarizes the health care debate this week: “More Hurdles for Health Care.” Democrats struggled with their various health care proposals last week in the wake of inconvenient reports that the two health care bills in the Senate would likely cost in excess of $1 trillion and would fail to cover all uninsured Americans. This week, more problems are surfacing as Americans get a better look at what President Obama and Democrats are proposing to do.
First, Democrats may have problems with each other when they attempt to merge bills being written in the Senate’s Finance and HELP committees. Roll Call notes, “last week, it was increasingly apparent that these two Senate committees are working on separate, and conflicting, tracks.” While the HELP bill includes a government-run insurance plan that could cost $1.6 trillion over ten years, the Finance bill does not include one. But the Finance bill is estimated to cost $1 trillion, and Democrats are now hastily rewriting it to lower the cost, widening the gap with the HELP bill. Not only that, the lead Democrat legislators on the committees seem to have different goals in mind. On Thursday, Sen. Chris Dodd (D-CT), who is writing the HELP bill said, “my goal is not bipartisanship,” and also dismissed cost projections for it. Yet Sen. Max Baucus, chairman of the Finance Committee, said, “I think it’s very important to get a good, bipartisan bill” and is quite concerned with reducing cost projections for his bill.
Indeed, the cost of these health care reforms, and particularly that of government-run health plans, has become a key issue. The Washington Post’sFred Hiatt sees the writing on the wall, pointing out, “it is quite likely that any legislation that emerges will create a hugely expensive health-care entitlement with no guarantee of the upward cost spiral being slowed.” Saturday, Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell [video]discussed this issue. “Throughout this debate . . . the administration’s central argument has been that America needs health care reform for the sake of the economy. Yet according to independent estimates, every health care proposal Democrats on Capitol Hill have offered would only hurt the economy.”
The policies being pushed by Democrats and President Obama look more and more problematic as Americans get a better look at them. Yesterday, George Will explained key problems with the idea of a government-run insurance plan. “The Lewin Group estimates that 70% of the 172 million persons privately covered might be drawn, or pushed, to the government plan. . . . Assurances that the government plan would play by the rules that private insurers play by are implausible. Government is incapable of behaving like market-disciplined private insurers. Competition from the public option must be unfair because government does not need to make a profit and has enormous pricing and negotiating powers. Besides, unless the point of a government plan is to be cheaper, it is pointless.”
A costly government-run insurance plan that pulls people out of the insurance they already have with a $1 trillion-plus price tag that the country can’t afford is not the right direction on health reform. The Hertitage Foundation reports "You Can’t Trust Obama on Health Care" and concludes "The American people know what the true costs of government-run health care would be: lower quality, less access, and less choice. As the health care debate continues this summer, and the reality behind Obama’s rhetoric is exposed, we’ll see how many people still support a government-run health insurance plan.Tags:Iran, nationalized health care, US Congress, US House, US Senate, Washington D.C.To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
Health care reform has been a central goal of The Heritage Foundation since our creation more than three decades ago, so we welcomed President Barack Obama’s call for a common effort to find the right solution to this public policy challenge. We believe that putting families, not the government, in control of the system is the key to success. We want to strengthen our health system based on that principle.
The trouble has been that, no sooner does the President call for “everybody to pitch in” and engage in the debate, than he vilifies anyone who criticizes his plans. Denigrating different views does nothing to improve the tone of the debate here in Washington, let alone achieve real reform.
Having a civil national debate will produce more lasting change; accusing opponents of engaging in “scare tactics and fear-mongering” will not. And make no mistake: there are legitimate concerns with what the White House has proposed. Americans need to understand the implications of all of the competing proposals, whether from the White House, from Capitol Hill, from industries, from think tanks or from interest groups.
In his speech to the American Medical Association, the President said, “When you hear the naysayers claim that I’m trying to bring about government-run health care, know this: They’re not telling the truth.” Truth, however, is not a commodity over which the President has a monopoly. We not only believe that we are alerting the nation to potentially catastrophic consequences when we point out pitfalls in his plans, we think that some proposals being made by the White House are advertised on false premises.
Here are a few examples: • If you like your health care package you can keep it: This assertion is difficult to square with the facts. The President says that a “public option”—a government plan—would just be one of many health care plans that Americans could select. In fact, a public plan will lead many employers to drop private health coverage for their workers and dump them into the public plan—just as many employers in the 1990s pushed their workers into cheaper managed care plans. According to independent analyses, as many as 119 million Americans could end up in a public plan. This is hardly letting people keep what they have. And many in Congress are eager to expand a public plan, with tight rules on what your doctor can do and how much he or she will be paid. Congress can do that because it will be both the “umpire” who sets the rules and the “team owner” of the public plan. There will be no “level-playing field.” We believe a public option will toll a death knell for private plans.
• The end goal is not a single payer system: This is another Washington euphemism that confuses people. Let us all be clear: The “single payer” here is Uncle Sam, using taxpayers’ money, and not just paying the bills but calling the shots and deciding what care every American will get—or not get. The inclusion of a public option is nothing more than a Trojan horse. The architects of the President’s proposals, and the sponsors of his proposals on Capitol Hill, know that once a government plan is in place, private insurance companies will be eventually run out of business. The government already owns a major bank and auto company; we shouldn’t hand over the medical industry as well.
• The proposals are deficit-neutral: The President also asserts that a government system will be fully financed. This is a stunning untruth. Analysts, including the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office–Congress’s own watchdog–have issued preliminary estimates that the cost could be high as $2 trillion over 10 years, with most of that borrowed money. Even squeezing Medicare payments and adding new tax revenue will not pay for the massive burden this plan would put on American families. And current congressional proposals would still leave millions without insurance. Washington always says that new costs will be paid by savings elsewhere, but these phantom savings never materialize. These new costs will be borne by American families.
• The quality of your health care will get better: One need only look at current government health programs to test this premise. Medicare has huge gaps in coverage. Medicaid’s quality is notoriously bad. They both offer substandard care compared to most private insurance plans. These persistent deficiencies are routinely overlooked in discussions of a government health plan. Rather than fixing Medicare and Medicaid, what the government proposes is to make these programs the foundations of a universal plan.
But we know opposing bad ideas is not enough. We need to fix the gaps in our health care system and lower costs for Americans. The system we need must not just protect union bosses, bureaucrats and select cartels, it must empower American families. The nation needs health care reform, not health care micromanaged by the government.
We are happy the President has joined a cause we have championed since our inception. He has recently been asking audiences across the nation “Where’s the alternative?” We at The Heritage Foundation are ready to discuss our alternative plans and help craft a bipartisan solution to America’s health care problems. That is what the country needs and what the President says he wants.
Specifically, a plan that would reform health care will need to:
• Give families control of their health care: We need to let families—not the government—control decisions so they can choose the coverage they want. For this to happen private health insurance needs to be portable—that is, owned by Americans so they can take their package from job to job. The health care system we have today was conceived in the era of World War II, when many Americans worked for the same company all their lives. As we know, that is not the case today. The President has acknowledged this. But we do not need a public plan, or mandates on businesses, to have portability. We need changes in rules and the removal of tax penalties to allow families real choice and ownership.
• Reform the tax system: For portability to become reality, we need to reform the tax system. Right now, families can get a tax break for their insurance only if they hand over control of their insurance to their boss, and leave their plan behind if they change jobs. That needs to change. We need to provide the same tax relief to families wherever they choose to get their plan. In that world of empowered families, plans would have to compete to satisfy them, not compete to cut costs for employers.
• Bring on competition: Americans will get quality health care only with the mechanism that has given us quality in all other aspects of life: competition. The way to get quality care in America is to have insurers compete to satisfy families in an insurance market, one that provides transparent information, ease of delivery and quick results, and which is fair to families and their doctors. Members of Congress pick and choose plans in such a market. The rest of America should also have that right.
• Recognize that states know better than Washington: The challenges of organizing and delivering health care vary greatly across the nation. Rural Mississippi is not the same as Midtown Manhattan. States have always been smarter than Washington at figuring out how to get the job done. To the extent that government must play a role, the states should take the lead in devising the best way to reach our national goals. The last thing we need is one-size-fits-all health care. Congress needs to let states find the best way to achieve value for money in widening coverage while bringing down costs.
A reckless, expensive and one-sided rush toward “reform” would not only be damaging to our public discourse, but it could fundamentally change our society in ways that have far-reaching consequences. Rather than bringing in the failed central-planning approach to health care, with the government controlling who gets what, let’s ensure access to affordable health care for all Americans. Let’s use the tried and tested approach of the empowered consumer in a truly competitive market.
These are some of our remedies to our nation’s health care system. There are other free market ideas that also warrant consideration. We call on the President and Congress to widen the conversation. Let the debate truly begin. [End of Open letter] See also: FixHealthCarePolicy.com Tags:Barack Obama, Edwin Feulner, health care, President, The Heritage FoundationTo share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the ARRA News Service. Thanks!
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