Today’s opining on the public discourse.
Another day, another Con lie exposed:
Well what do you know. It looks like there may be some problems with Sen. Mitch McConnell’s favorite Canadian health care horror story. h/t The Political Carnival
To my American friends: I sincerely hope you’re not taken in by the GOP propaganda featuring Canadian Shona Holmes trashing our system of universal healthcare. The problem is both that Ms. Holmes and her Republican masters misrepresented her condition and that the tactic itself is reprehensible. The GOP can’t produce any logical argument against a system that is entrenched in every Western society except yours, so they resort to fear-mongering and lies, claiming that one Canadian’s skewed view trumps the experiences and beliefs of the rest of us.
Still, I found Holmes tale both compelling and troubling. So I decided to check a little further. On the Mayo Clinic’s website, Shona Holmes is a success story. But it’s somewhat different story than all the headlines might have implied. Holmes’ “brain tumour” was actually a Rathke’s Cleft Cyst on her pituitary gland. To quote an American source, the John Wayne Cancer Center, “Rathke’s Cleft Cysts are not true tumors or neoplasms; instead they are benign cysts.”
Quelle surprise. I’m sure we never expected such blatant misrepresentation, shocked they could be so devious, etc. etc. sarcasm etc.
Another day, another Con claiming Obama’s gonna kill grandmas:
Last Friday, Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-TX) joined radical conspiracy theorist Alex Jones on his radio talk show for an interview. Jones has made a name for himself propagating conspiracies ranging from the claim that Bill Clinton planned the Oklahoma City bombings to the idea that the attacks on 9/11 were orchestrated by a cabal of American and Israeli government officials.
During the 30-minute interview about “nation ending stuff,” Gohmert used his opportunity on the Jones show to showcase his own odd anti-Obama conspiracy theories:
GOHMERT: We’ve been battling this socialist health care, the nationalization of health care, that is going to absolutely kill senior citizens. They’ll put them on lists and force them to die early because they won’t get the treatment as early as they need. […] I would rather stop this socialization of health care because once the government pays for your health care, they have every right to tell you what you eat, what you drink, how you exercise, where you live. […] But if we’re going to pay 700 million dollars like we voted last Friday to put condoms on wild horses, and I know it just says an un-permanent enhanced contraception whatever the heck that is. I guess it follows that they’re eventually get around to doing it to us.
A rousing discussion about the White House science czar’s nefarious recommendation to sterilize the nation via drinking water, Hitler, youth brigades, and other conspiracy nut bullshit. Texas: either stop sending nutjobs to Washington or secede, I beg you.
That’s what the crew at Fox & Friends this morning did, led by “Fox News legal analyst” Peter Johnson Jr., and aided and abetted by Brian Kilmeade and Gretchen Carlson. First they played a snippet of Obama at a town-hall meeting on health care:
But what we can do is make sure that at least some of the waste that exists in the system that’s not making anybody’s mom better, that is loading up on additional tests or additional drugs that the evidence shows is not necessarily going to improve care, that at least we can let doctors know, and your mom know, that you know what, maybe this isn’t going to help, maybe you’re better off not having the surgery, but taking the painkiller.
This became the launching pad:
Kilmeade: Dying?!! Sucking it up?!! And not having surgery?
Johnson: Too sick, too expensive.
Kilmeade: Well, that’s what this whole trend is!
Johnson: Absolutely. And some people are saying, ‘Well, this isn’t health care reform,’ and other people are saying — maybe me — that this is a subtle form of euthanasia. And when you start looking at the proposals, you say, ‘God, what’s happening?’
Of course, all they had to do was watch the entire set of remarks on this by Obama in their context to realize what’s happening: that effective reform means cutting the waste created by a medical establishment that thrives on unnecessary procedures — he wasn’t suggesting that people be denied life-saving operations.
Problem being, of course, that watching all the remarks in context would be too much like journalism, which Faux News finds icky.
On Saturday, the conservative editors of the Wall Street Journal editorial page used their weekly Fox News show to attack every aspect of the health care reform that President Obama is trying to work through Congress. To criticize t
he idea of public insurance plan, assistant editorial page editor James Freeman claimed that health reform in Massachusetts shows what would happen with a public option:
GIGOT: All right, James, let me ask you about this–the public option. Because the president says, Look, all this is, is going to compete with the private plans, keep them honest. The insurers are making a lot of money right now. We need to keep them honest.
FREEMAN: Right, and I think the beauty of this is we don’t need to guess or estimate or just posit what might happen, because the people of Massachusetts since 2006 have been running the experiment for all of us, and we can go to school on it.
Freeman: And it’s very clear what happens. Private insurance goes away, more people go on the public plan, costs explode, more costs go onto small business, and people lose their jobs or they get salary freezes.
There’s one problem with Freeman’s analysis: Massachusetts doesn’t have a public plan. As former MA governor Mitt Romney, who implemented the plan, told CNSNews last month, “Our plan did not include a government insurance plan.” “Instead, we relied entirely on private market-based insurance plans to help people get insurance,” said Romney.
Bet you a dollar to a donut hole being so completely fucking wrong doesn’t even cause them to blink as they run with this little meme. Facts never seem to faze these fuckers.
In light of all that scaremongering, bullshit-spewing, and downright chicanery, this remark by NRCC spokesman Ken Spain is all the funnier:
“Democrats control the White House, the House, and have a filibuster-proof majority in the Senate. Their lack of progress is due to the growing public skepticism over their government-run plan and public infighting that is taking place within Democratic ranks. There is nothing for the GOP to obstruct.”
Riiight. Pull the other one, it’s got bells on. Look, you wouldn’t be trying so fucking hard to obstruct health care reform if, as you say, there’s nothing for you to obstruct.
Anyway, tell it to Max Baucus:
Rep. Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.), chair of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC), suggested this morning that the value of bipartisan health care reform talks is nearing its end.
“What concerns me about what’s happened in the Senate Finance Committee is that they’ve had a whole lot of time to work these things out, and just don’t seem to be able to break the impasse,” Van Hollen said in an interview on the liberal Bill Press Radio Show. “It doesn’t seem to be as much about a disagreement over policy issues, and it seems more to be just the lack of the political will on behalf of some to get it done.”
Van Hollen blamed the committee’s slow work on Republicans, who he asserted were unwilling to make the needed “tough decisions” to craft a healthcare bill.
“At some point that’s going to have to happen, and the question is when do you reach that breaking point,” the Maryland Democrat said when asked if Senate Democrats should end negotiations. “At some point they’re going to have to pull the plug on that process, and when they do that is something they’re in a better position to know.”
“A lot of our members in the House want to see, not what the full Senate does, but at least what the Senate Finance Committee moves forward,” he said. “The reality is, a lot of our members want them to at least show their hand a little bit before we ask them to make some very tough decisions.”
The notion that there will come a point at which they’ll have to “pull the plug” is an interesting one, since Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) seemed to think we’d reached that point about three weeks ago. And yet, Max Baucus continues to try to find a way to make Republicans happy (with concessions that other Democrats aren’t at all aware of).
Psst, Max: Ken Spain sez the Cons aren’t obstructing anything, the Dems are. I think he means fucktards like you, who keep trying to get the bully-boy Cons to play nice with you, which is why you keep getting beaten up and robbed of your lunch money. They’ll never like you, buster. Get the fuck over it.
I mean, after all, you’re trying to reason with the kind of people who feel comfortable being this bloody stupid in public:
This afternoon, Sen. James Inhofe (R-OK) took to the Senate floor and basically made a pitch for the oil and gas industry. He said that to ensure “energy security,” the United States should increasingly “extract our own resources.” According to Inhofe, this solution would not only achieve energy independence, but it would also be pollution-free:
People complain that we are buying — importing from the Middle East — oil and gas. And then they find out that we have it all right here. We don’t have to do that. If their argument there is “Well, we don’t want to use oil and gas because we think it pollutes” — which it doesn’t — but if that’s their argument, then why are we willing to import it from Saudi Arabia and other countries in the Middle East?
Um, gee, I dunno – maybe it has something to do with all the fucking pollution:
Not only does oil and gas drilling release greenhouse gas emissions that contribute to climate change, but they also release other dangerous pollutants that endanger American health. As the Natural Resources Defense Council wrote in a 2008 report:
Oil and gas drilling operations can release a number of hazardous pollutants, including hydrogen sulfide, benzene, toluene, formaldehyde, and diesel exhaust. Exposure is known to lead to short-term illnesses, cancer, or even death. For example, benzene and formaldehyde are both known to cause cancer, and diesel exhaust contains a number of compounds known to cause cancer. Emissions can come from oil and gas itself, chemical additives used in drilling, or fuel combustion.
, a 2003 University of California at Irvine study found that “oil and natural gas wells and refineries create regional air pollution levels in excess of some of the nation’s smoggiest urban areas.” In states like Wyoming and New Mexico, “oil and gas drilling operations are the second largest source of statewide carbon dioxide and methane emissions,” two key greenhouse gases.
I wonder if Inhofe’s lack of brain function arose from an unfortunate habit of huffing oil well fumes as a child. That would explain a lot.
We shall end with some wonderful news. Rush Limbaugh has finally discovered that torture is wrong! Alas, this does not mean he has tapped a sudden wellspring of sanity:
During the Bush/Cheney era, we had an administration that routinely ignored the rule of law, embraced authoritarian tendencies, and approved heinous acts of torture. Rush Limbaugh, without a hint of irony, today warned his listeners that the Obama administration will do the very things Bush already did.
“[T]here are people in this country, who are Americans, and have the same view of totalitarianism that all the worst regimes in the world have had. They just are a minority — or have been a minority,” Limbaugh said. “And they have to be stealth to get anywhere, because who’s gonna vote for torture? Who’s gonna vote for tyranny? Who’s gonna vote for dictatorship? But we did. We did, and you see it slowly encroaching. And if they could move faster on this, they would.”
Keep in mind, when Limbaugh says we “did” vote for torture and dictatorship, he’s referring to Obama’s election, not Bush’s. “Who’s going vote for torture?” Well, as I recall, Limbaugh did, twice.
It’s almost comical. Bush created a torture policy; Obama ended the torture policy. So, naturally, Limbaugh tells his audience that Obama supporters “voted for torture.”
Isn’t being this divorced from reality a sign of severe mental illness? Usually, people this psychotic end up in mental institutions.
Maybe his insurance doesn’t have mental health benefits…