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3851  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / the great conciliator LOL on: June 23, 2009, 09:01:18 AM
Gee, the great one who was going bring us all together and change poiitcs as we know it.  So what's his plan?  steal and conficscate everything he and hsi party can get away with from the producers to buy votes from those that are not producing and rely on the former group.  Expand entitlements, government ownership, control, ranks, taxes (as soon as thye think they can get away with it), demoralize the nation domesticaly at home and abroad to the delight of his minority supporters and our enemies and competitors and then claim he is going to bring us together.  He will crash and burn sooner or later in the polls.  His core 40% of die hards will defend him to the death.  As will the new 9.7 million illegals he will grant amnesty to leading to another 10 mill Democrat voters.
The inceasingly smaller group of producers that for now, still make up a majority will catch on and he will plummet in the polls.
Hopefully it will be before it is too late.  And it will not happen easily if we have not viable alternative from the Republicans.


***Daily Presidential Tracking Poll
Tuesday, June 23, 2009 Email to a Friend ShareThisAdvertisementThe Rasmussen Reports daily Presidential Tracking Poll for Tuesday shows that 33% of the nation's voters now Strongly Approve of the way that Barack Obama is performing his role as President. Thirty-three percent (33%) Strongly Disapprove giving Obama a Presidential Approval Index rating of 0 (see trends).

Seven percent (7%) rate the economy as good or excellent while 59% say it’s poor. A Rasmussen video report notes that 55% believe business leaders will do more than government officials to get the economy moving again.

Sixty-nine percent (69%) say that volunteer activity is more important that political action. But, people are evenly divided as to whether or not volunteerism or government policies are the best way to bring about the change that America needs.

The Presidential Approval Index is calculated by subtracting the number who Strongly Disapprove from the number who Strongly Approve. It is updated daily at 9:30 a.m. Eastern (sign up for free daily e-mail update). Updates also available on Twitter.

Overall, 55% of voters say they at least somewhat approve of the President's performance so far. Forty-four percent (44%) disapprove. For more Presidential barometers, see Obama By the Numbers and recent demographic highlights.

Most oppose the “Cash for Clunkers” plan that’s been approved by Congress and 50% believe that hate is on the rise in America.

(More Below)


Most voters still place the blame for our nation’s economic woes on the Bush Administration, but a growing number say it’s Obama’s economy now. The number blaming Bush has fallen to 54%. That’s down eight points from a month ago.

Americans remain evenly divided as to whether or not health care reform should wait until the economy is better.

Check out our weekly review of key polls from last week to see “What They Told Us.” You might also try our Daily Prediction Challenge to predict the results of upcoming polls.

When comparing Job Approval data from different firms, it’s important to keep in mind that polls of likely voters and polls of all adults will typically and consistently yield different results. In the case of President Obama, polls by all firms measuring all adults typically show significantly higher approval ratings than polls of likely voters. Polls of registered voters typically fall in the middle. Other factors are also important to consider when comparing Job Approval ratings from different polling firms.

If you’d like Scott Rasmussen to speak at your meeting, retreat, or conference, contact Premiere Speakers Bureau. You can also learn about Scott’s favorite place on earth or his time working with hockey legend Gordie Howe.

A Fordham University professor has rated the national pollsters on their record in Election 2008. We also have provided a summary of our results for your review.

Daily tracking results are collected via telephone surveys of 500 likely voters per night and reported on a three-day rolling average basis. The margin of sampling error—for the full sample of 1,500 Likely Voters--is +/- 3 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence. Results are also compiled on a full-week basis and crosstabs for full-week results are available for Premium Members.

Like all polling firms, Rasmussen Reports weights its data to reflect the population at large (see methodology). Among other targets, Rasmussen Reports weights data by political party affiliation using a dynamic weighting process. While partisan affiliation is generally quite stable over time, there are a fair number of people who waver between allegiance to a particular party or independent status. Over the past four years, the number of Democrats in the country has increased while the number of Republicans has decreased.

Our baseline targets are established based upon separate survey interviews with a sample of adults nationwide completed during the preceding three months (a total of 45,000 interviews) and targets are updated monthly. Currently, the baseline targets for the adult population are 40.1% Democrats, 33.1% Republicans, and 26.7% unaffiliated. Likely voter samples typically show a slightly smaller advantage for the Democrats.

A review of last week’s key polls is posted each Saturday morning. Other stats on Obama are updated daily on the Rasmussen Reports Obama By the Numbers page. We also invite you to review other recent demographic highlights from the tracking polls.***

3852  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Corruption on: June 16, 2009, 08:56:32 AM
Krauthammer was right in noting that Fox news is a fantastic outlet that is the only major source of news that is not corrupted with the MSM bias.  A few city newspapers, and talk radio and that is it.
That God (or Murdoch) for Fox.  I don't know how I could stand watching all the propaganda from the other outlets.  CNN is at least reeanable but the rest are all NYT style propaganda.
3853  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Media Issues on: June 16, 2009, 08:33:27 AM
If you haven't seen drudge yet today check this ou
We essentially are seeing government controlled media:

Folks, I don't know if health care costs can be controlled withoug some form of controls on delivery.  But make no mistake about it.  Those of us who are now paying for it will have are care rationed to pay for those who are not.  End of story.
The Republicans need make this clear.  We want all Americans to understand that they can decide if they want to spurge for universal care but theirw WILL be rationed.  Don't let BO deny this.  The cost controls they are talking about are only the beginning.
But this as far as I know is a seminal event in our history is it not?   Unless we had something like this during wartime (WW2) before I was born:

Tue Jun 16 2009 08:45:10 ET

On the night of June 24, the media and government become one, when ABC turns its programming over to President Obama and White House officials to push government run health care -- a move that has ignited an ethical firestorm!

Highlights on the agenda:

ABCNEWS anchor Charlie Gibson will deliver WORLD NEWS from the Blue Room of the White House.

The network plans a primetime special -- 'Prescription for America' -- originating from the East Room, exclude opposing voices on the debate.


Late Monday night, Republican National Committee Chief of Staff Ken McKay fired off a complaint to the head of ABCNEWS:

Dear Mr. Westin:

As the national debate on health care reform intensifies, I am deeply concerned and disappointed with ABC's astonishing decision to exclude opposing voices on this critical issue on June 24, 2009. Next Wednesday, ABC News will air a primetime health care reform “town hall” at the White House with President Barack Obama. In addition, according to an ABC News report, GOOD MORNING AMERICA, WORLD NEWS, NIGHTLINE and ABC’s web news “will all feature special programming on the president’s health care agenda.” This does not include the promotion, over the next 9 days, the president’s health care agenda will receive on ABC News programming.

Today, the Republican National Committee requested an opportunity to add our Party's views to those of the President's to ensure that all sides of the health care reform debate are presented. Our request was rejected. I believe that the President should have the ability to speak directly to the America people. However, I find it outrageous that ABC would prohibit our Party's opposing thoughts and ideas from this national debate, which affects millions of ABC viewers.

In the absence of opposition, I am concerned this event will become a glorified infomercial to promote the Democrat agenda. If that is the case, this primetime infomercial should be paid for out of the DNC coffers. President Obama does not hold a monopoly on health care reform ideas or on free airtime. The President has stated time and time again that he wants a bipartisan debate. Therefore, the Republican Party should be included in this primetime event, or the DNC should pay for your airtime.

Ken McKay
Republican National Committee
Chief of Staff


3854  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Politics of Health Care on: June 15, 2009, 12:49:41 PM
June 15, 2009
Naive, Hypocritical and Dishonest
By Robert Samuelson

WASHINGTON -- It's hard to know whether President Obama's health care "reform" is naive, hypocritical or simply dishonest. Probably all three. The president keeps saying it's imperative to control runaway health spending. He's right. The trouble is that what's being promoted as health care "reform" almost certainly won't suppress spending and, quite probably, will do the opposite.

A new report from Obama's own Council of Economic Advisers shows why controlling health costs is so important. Since 1975, annual health spending per person, adjusted for inflation, has grown 2.1 percentage points faster than overall economic growth per person. Should this trend continue, the CEA projects that:

-- Health spending, which was 5 percent of the economy (gross domestic product, GDP) in 1960 and is reckoned at almost 18 percent today, would grow to 34 percent of GDP by 2040 -- a third of the economy.

-- Medicare and Medicaid, the government insurance programs for the elderly and poor, would increase from 6 percent of GDP now to 15 percent in 2040 -- roughly equal to three-quarters of present federal spending.

-- Employer-paid insurance premiums for family coverage, which grew 85 percent in inflation-adjusted terms from 1996 to $11,941 in 2006, would increase to $25,200 by 2025 and $45,000 in 2040 (all figures in "constant 2008 dollars"). The huge costs would force employers to reduce take-home pay.

The message in these dismal figures is that uncontrolled health spending is almost single-handedly determining national priorities. It's reducing discretionary income, raising taxes, widening budget deficits and squeezing other government programs. Worse, much medical spending is wasted, the CEA report says. It doesn't improve Americans' health; some care is unneeded or ineffective.

The Obama administration's response is to talk endlessly about restraining health spending -- "bending the curve'' is the buzz -- as if talk would suffice. The president summoned the heads of major health care trade groups representing doctors, hospitals, drug companies and medical device firms to the White House. All pledged to bend the curve. This is mostly public relations. Does anyone believe that the American Medical Association can control the nation's 800,000 doctors or that the American Hospital Association can command the 5,700 hospitals?

The central cause of runaway health spending is clear. Hospitals and doctors are paid mostly on a fee-for-service basis and reimbursed by insurance, either private or governmental. The open-ended payment system encourages doctors and hospitals to provide more services -- and patients to expect them. It also favors new medical technologies, which are made profitable by heavy use. Unfortunately, what pleases providers and patients individually hurts the nation as a whole.

That's the crux of the health care dilemma, and Obama hasn't confronted it. His emphasis on controlling costs is cosmetic. The main aim of health care "reform" now being fashioned in Congress is to provide insurance to most of the 46 million uncovered Americans. This is popular and seems the moral thing to do. After all, hardly anyone wants to be without insurance. But the extra coverage might actually worsen the spending problem.

How much healthier today's uninsured would be with that coverage is unclear. They already receive health care -- $116 billion worth in 2008, estimates Families USA, an advocacy group. Some is paid by the uninsured themselves (37 percent), some by government and charities (26 percent). The remaining "uncompensated care" is either absorbed by doctors and hospitals or shifted to higher private insurance premiums. Some uninsured would benefit from coverage, but others wouldn't. Either they're healthy (40 percent are between ages 18 and 34) or would receive ineffective care.

The one certain consequence of expanding insurance coverage is that it would raise spending. When people have insurance, they use more health services. That's one reason why Obama's campaign proposal was estimated to cost $1.2 trillion over a decade (the other reason is that the federal government would pick up some costs now paid by others). Indeed, the higher demand for health care might raise costs across the board, increasing both government spending and private premiums.

No doubt the health program that Congress fashions will counter this reality by including some provisions intended to cut costs ("bundled payments" to hospitals, "evidence-based guidelines," electronic record keeping). In the past, scattershot measures have barely affected health spending. What's needed is a fundamental remaking of the health care sector -- a sweeping "restructuring"-- that would overhaul fee-for-service payment and reduce the fragmentation of care.

The place to start would be costly Medicare, the nation's largest insurance program serving 45 million elderly and disabled. Of course, this would be unpopular, because it would disrupt delivery patterns and reimbursement practices. It's easier to pretend to be curbing health spending while expanding coverage and spending. Presidents have done that for decades, and it's why most health industries see "reform" as a good deal.

Copyright 2009, Washington Post Writers Group
3855  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Politics of Health Care on: June 13, 2009, 12:06:53 PM
*The cost-shift dynamic plays a prominent role in the health care sector. A study by the actuarial firm Milliman calculated that public programs currently shift $88.8 billion in costs onto private payers per year, increasing the typical American family's annual private health insurance premium by $1,512, or 10.6 percent.[15] Moreover, Lewin speculates that a new public plan could increase the annual cost-shift per privately insured by as much as $526, which will only serve to further perpetuate the crowd-out of private insurance.[16]*

Milliman again (see my previous post).

This makes sense.  Someone has to pay for all the medicaid that doesn't cover a providers costs.  I doubt doctors lose money on medicare.  I am not sure about whether or not hospitals do.

One can only imagine the cost shifts to the rest of the country when we start subsidizing another 40 million.

How many of those are illegals I wonder?
I wonder how many of these are people with pre existing conditions who want insurance but cannot get?
I assume the rest simply can't afford it.

3856  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Prediction:When the eventual fall comes BO will blame his fellow Dems on: June 13, 2009, 11:55:24 AM
Dick Morris predictions, I think, have been fairly acurrate.  Dick thinks the outcome of the gigantic spending of BO, and his associate Dems will be one or a combination of:

1)  massive inflation
2)  the policies will fail and the economy will continue tanking
3)  or taxes will sky rocket.

All the outcomes in his opinion will cause the ruin of BO - it is only a matter of time.

My guess he is right about the first three predictions.   But I have a prediction that he may be wrong about the ruin of BO:

BO (despite another one of his deceptions stating he doesn't look much at polls) is of course studying them with a fine tooth comb.

When he sees his poll numbers start to drop because more and more people will start worrying about the gigantic spending BO is not going to just sit there.

I predict he will start throwing his democrat colleagues in both houses to the wolves, with an all out triangulation attack blaming THEM for the massive spending. 

We will start seeing more and more subtle calls and claims from him and his subordinates that HE is working diligently to hold DOWN spending.  If it doesn't come down (and it won't because Democrats are clueless without being able to steal money and buy votes), and things go wrong as Morris predicts they MUST then watch for BO start publically  blaming his own party mates for the malfeasance.  He won't accept the responsibility.

Right now he continues and is getting away with blaming the "previous administration".  But when that no longer works he will blame his fellow Dems. 

Would he succeed in getting away with this?  I am not sure.  The adoring MSM will do their best to help him.
We shall see.
3857  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: Pathological Science on: June 13, 2009, 11:40:33 AM
"So much for President Obama’s Jan. 21 committment to unprecedented openness in government"


My guess as to the reasons he gets away with this con:

1) He has conned a majority of Americans that they will get something for nothing. Although poll data that suggest that a majority now feel Republicans can handle the economy better suggest they are starting to see past his BS.

2) An adoring media.  Though it is interesting your article appears to be from the NYT though probably page 2,567 in small print.  If it was W it would have been page 1.

3) Who yet is the alternative to BO?

4) People are still rightly frightened by the economy and the sense of calm the gigantic spending bills have restored have lulled them into a sense of complacency.

3858  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Savings in health plan from BO equals HMO medicine for all. on: June 13, 2009, 11:20:03 AM
Notice that other than prescription savings he doesn't tell us the truth about where the savings are coming from.
It is going to come from limiting access to specialists, tests, and other services the "experts" will deem are "inappropriate".  It will be based on population based studies and essentially be like HMO medicine.  Care will be monitored (medicare already is anyway), and restricted in ways akin to Millman and Robinson flow charts that private risk managers use to determine what they will and what they won't pay for.

My understanding of this (though I am by no means an expert)  is that outcomes data is used to determine if doing things more cheaply or restricting care increases hospitalization, rehospitalization, death or morbidity rates.  I am not clear that the data is proof the care is as safe or as good.  It depends what one is measuring when determining the "outcomes".  On the other hand I am not clear there is any data that suggests health care is worse though it is certainly less convenient. For harder to measure outcomes itmay be worse.

As for the prescription savings I do agree that many patients are on more expensive non generic drugs that are no better of more effective than cheaper generic older drugs.

This is what the EMR is for.  To collect all the data and then come out with dictates that will instruct providers on how we must deliver care.  It will be mandated.  Whether private insurers can survive I am not sure.  I don't necessarily jump to the conclusion that some from the right are trying to scare us all into believing that "there is absolutely no way private health insurance will be doomed but that could very well be the case.  Certainly BO despite whatever he says he is certainly working with the goal in mind of a national health care system.  There is really no other rational conclusion.   BO's people have been looking at these things for years.  It ain't new.  It ain't BOs ideas though he obviously embraces them wholeheartedly.

In any case, there is no question BO isn't leveling with us about his real intentions:

Obama calls for new health care spending cuts AP  Reuters – President Barack Obama speaks about reforming America's health care system at a Wisconsin Town Hall … Josh Gerstein Josh Gerstein – Sat Jun 13, 7:06 am ET
President Barack Obama says he's now found savings that will pay almost all the costs of a massive overhaul of America's health care system.

Obama on Saturday is announcing an additional $313 billion in new proposed savings that he says would bring the total funding available for his top-priority health insurance reform to nearly $950 billion over 10 years.

White House officials insisted the new savings were rock-solid, but also acknowledged they had yet to settle on a specific mechanism to achieve lower prescription drug costs that make up nearly one-quarter of the new savings.

“Any honest accounting must prepare for the fact that health care reform will require additional costs in the short term in order to reduce spending in the long term,” Obama says in his weekly radio and Internet address. “Today, I am announcing an additional $313 billion in savings that will rein in unnecessary spending, and increase efficiency and the quality of care.”

The new proposals from Obama came as the drive for health care reform reaches a pivotal juncture in Congress. On Monday, the Senate Finance Committee is scheduled to receive Congressional Budget Office estimates on a slew of health-care options. On Wednesday, the committee is expected to unveil proposed legislation.

In advance of those milestones, the White House was moving aggressively to counter public criticism that funding plans for the health reform effort are unrealistic, particularly in the face of an expected 10-year pricetag of $1 trillion or more. Some analysts have faulted the White House for being overly optimistic about savings and tone-deaf to which tax-raising proposals are likely to fly in Congress.

In his address Saturday, Obama refers to a 10-year total of more than $600 billion in “savings” for health care. However, he does not explain in his latest comments that, under his revised budget released last month, $326 billion of that amount would come from tax hikes on Americans making over $250,000 a year, “loophole closers,” and higher fees for some government services.

In a conference call with reporters Friday, Office of Management and Budget Director Peter Orszag said the latest announcement signaled that the White House had met its obligation to identify funding sources for a broad-based effort to make health insurance more affordable and more widely available.

“We are making good on this promise to fully finance health care reform over the next decade,” Orszag declared.

The bulk of the new $313 billion in savings would come from cutting or reducing the growth of payments to hospitals, medical equipment manufacturers and laboratories — though the major cuts don't target doctors, Orszag said.

Over the next decade, $110 billion is slated to come from reducing reimbursements to take account of what Orszag described as the ability of providers to improve their efficiency. “Health care services should be able to achieve and do achieve productivity improvements over time,” he said. According to a fact sheet released by the White House, future increases in such Medicare payments would be reduced based on an assumption that health care providers achieve half the productivity increases seen elsewhere in the economy. The budget official said the reductions would take place even if providers failed to garner the projected efficiencies.

Another $106 billion would come from cuts in so-called disproportionate share payments the federal government makes to hospitals with large numbers of uninsured patients. “As the ranks of uninsured decline under health reform, those payments become less necessary,” Orszag said.


About $75 billion is slated to come from lower payments for prescription drugs. However, Orszag said the White House was “in discussions with stakeholders over the best way of achieving that $75 billion.”

Notwithstanding that ambiguity, Orszag asserted that the White House had put forward $950 billion in budgetary offsets that could be use to fund health reform. He called the proposals "hard" and "scoreable," meaning that they were sufficiently certain and specific to pass muster with CBO officials who formally tally the cost of budget items.

Asked about the discrepancy, Orszag said, “There’s been continuous skepticism that we will come forward with detail….The detail on the $75 billion for prescription drugs will be forthcoming in the very near future and I will rest my reputation as a former CBO director on the fact that there are multiple ways in which those savings can be achieved and we are committed to achieving that level of savings in this package.”

There were signs that the announcement of the additional $313 billion of savings may have been rushed. In addition to the vagueness about the $75 billion in lower drug costs, the White House’s health care reform coordinator, Nancy-Ann DeParle, did not join a conference call with reporters to announce the new proposals. Her presence had been advertised in advance, but a spokesman said she was in another meeting and could not participate.

The cuts and savings are likely to engender warnings from providers that de-facto rationing will occur as patients in some areas find themselves unable to find providers willing to perform lab tests, X-rays and the like, due to the lower reimbursement rates.

Hospitals are also likely to protest that the disproportionate share payments, which are targeted for cuts of 75 percent, are vital to maintaining hospitals in costly urban centers, and to keeping teaching hospitals viable.

“It is unlikely to be an exact match on a hospital-by-hospital basis but what we believe will occur is that the remaining DSH payments that will still exist can be better targeted to the hospitals most in need,” Orszag said.


3859  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / Re: Music on: June 12, 2009, 05:52:17 PM
I suspect the Beatles may have actually been one of the few groups that actually did write their songs as they claim:

"Turner said his research, including interviews with Vodden and Julian Lennon, confirm that she is the Lucy in the song. He said it was common for John Lennon to "snatch songs out of thin air" based on a simple phrase he heard on TV or an item he read in the newspapers"

That is how Katherine writes her songs.  Except not from the newspaper which she doesn't read.  She gets them from TV, thngs she hears, during conversation or spontaneous thoughts.

The songs then just come into her head.

Of course a lot of dirtball liars in the music "industry", if that is what you call a criminal organization from top to bottom, claim this now.  After stealing hundreds of her lyrics the phrase "singer-songwriter" became ubiquitis as the assholes are all running around taking credit for coming up with lyrics - that they didn't write.

****Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds' gravely ill
AP, Jun 12, 2009 9:23 am PDT
They were childhood chums. Then they drifted apart, lost touch completely, and only renewed their friendship decades later, when illness struck.Not so unusual, really.
Except she is Lucy Vodden — the girl who was the inspiration for the Beatles' 1967 psychedelic classic "Lucy in the Sky With Diamonds" — and he is Julian Lennon, the musician son of John Lennon.
They are linked together by something that happened more than 40 years ago when Julian brought home a drawing from school and told his father, "That's Lucy in the sky with diamonds."
Just the sort of cute phrase lots of 3- or 4-year-olds produce — but not many have a father like John Lennon, who used it as a springboard for a legendary song that became a centerpiece on the landmark album "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band."
"Julian got in touch with me out of the blue, when he heard how ill I was, and he said he wanted to do something for me," said the 46-year-old Vodden, who has lupus, a chronic disease where the immune system attacks the body's own tissue.
Lennon, who lives in France, sent his old friend flowers and vouchers she could use to buy plants at a local gardening center, since working in her garden is one of the few activities she is still occasionally well enough to enjoy. More importantly, he has offered her friendship and a connection to more carefree days. They communicate mostly by text message.
"I wasn't sure at first how to approach her. I wanted at least to get a note to her," Julian Lennon told The Associated Press. "Then I heard she had a great love of gardening, and I thought I'd help with something she's passionate about, and I love gardening too. I wanted to do something to put a smile on her face."
Vodden admits she enjoys her association with the song, but doesn't particularly care for it. Perhaps that's not surprising. It was thought by many at the time, including BBC executives who banned the song, that the classic was a paean to LSD because of the initials in the title. Plus, she and Julian were 4 years old in 1967, the "Summer of Love" when "Sgt. Pepper" was released to worldwide acclaim. She missed the psychedelic era to which the song is indelibly linked.
"I don't relate to the song, to that type of song," said Vodden, described as "the girl with kaleidoscope eyes" in the lyrics. "As a teenager, I made the mistake of telling a couple of friends at school that I was the Lucy in the song and they said, 'No, it's not you, my parents said it's about drugs.' And I didn't know what LSD was at the time, so I just kept it quiet, to myself."
There's no doubt the fanciful lyrics and swirling musical effects draw heavily on the LSD experiences that were shaping Lennon's artistic output at the time — although many of the musical flourishes were provided by producer George Martin, who was not a drug user.
"The imagery in the song is partly a reflection of John's drug experiences, and partly his love of `Alice in Wonderland,'" said Steve Turner, author of "A Hard Day's Write," a book that details the origins of every Beatles song. "At the time it came out, it seemed overtly psychedelic, it sounded like some kind of trip. It was completely new at the time. To me it is very evocative of the period."
Turner said his research, including interviews with Vodden and Julian Lennon, confirm that she is the Lucy in the song. He said it was common for John Lennon to "snatch songs out of thin air" based on a simple phrase he heard on TV or an item he read in the newspapers. In this case, Turner said, it was the phrase from Julian that triggered John's imagination.
Veteran music critic Fred Schruers said Julian Lennon's reaching out to help Vodden as she fights the disease is particularly moving because of the childlike nature of the song.
"It's enormously evocative but with a tinge of poignancy," he said. "It's the lost childhood Julian had with that little Lucy and the lost innocence we had with the psychedelic era, an innocence we really cherished until it was snatched away."
Vodden was diagnosed with lupus about five years ago after suffering other serious health problems. She has been struggling extreme fatigue, joint pain, and other ailments.
"She's not given up, she's a fighter, and she has her family backing her, that's a good thing," said Angie Davidson, campaign director for St. Thomas' Lupus Trust, which funds research. "We need more people like her, more Lucys."
Davidson, who also has the disease, said it affects each person differently, typically causing exhaustion and depression. When the disease kills, she said, it does so by attacking the body's internal organs.
It has become difficult for Vodden to go out — most of her trips are to the hospital — but recently she and her husband went to a bookstore and heard the song playing over the store's music system. When they went to another shop, the song was on there as well.
"That made me giggle," she said.****
3860  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Political Rants on: June 12, 2009, 02:32:26 PM
Hi Doug,

Fascinating point about Aristotle here.  Let's apply the philosophy, or let me try:

BO has the ethos and pathos but not the best logos.

So he and the other Dems provide logos with falsehoods, lies and other deceptive manipulations that people will fall for in their wanting to believe that he is some sort of savior.

And he bribes large numbers with his class warfare rhetoric and to confiscate wealth and give it away to his favorite constituents and supporters.

They wrongly beleive he is helping them.  In the process he is selling America down the river.
This is where Dick Morris comes in.  He points out that BO's positions are not supported by a majority of Americans though her remains favorable.  When more and more Americans begin to feel the pain he is inflicting on this country then his personal numbers will fall.

3861  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Political Rants on: June 12, 2009, 11:22:11 AM
Reagan and Lincoln vs BO

Reagan said what he meant and meant and did what he said.


Does not say the true extent of what he means and does and means a lot more than what he is saying.
What would the founding fathers think about such deception?

3862  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Anti-semitism & Jews on: June 11, 2009, 03:31:52 PM
And as Krauthammer first suggested BO's greatest gift is his temperment.

It is hard if not impossible for me to believe BO sat in Wright's church for decades listening to this kind of stuff and didn't on at least some level, if not completely, agree.

He certainly did not protest much did he?

IMO this is an example of what Krauthammer, a Harvard trained psychiatrist, was one of the first to notice - that BO can hide his feelings and play everyone for his own benefit.

3863  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Dick Morris on: June 11, 2009, 03:25:05 PM
He has been pointing out that bo's policies are not all that popular which is not in sync with the fact that he is popular.
He predicts his poularity will fall as the public starts to equate him as part of the problem and not the solution.
That will occur when the visciousness of his changes start to be felt.

Will see if this plays out as he predicts.

"By Dick Morris 06.10.2009 Published on on June 9, 2009

At last, there is convincing evidence that Obama’s poll numbers may be descending to earth. While his approval remains high — and his personal favorability is even higher — the underlying numbers suggest that a decline may be in the offing. Even as he stands on his pedestal, the numbers under his feet are crumbling.

According to a Rasmussen poll, more voters now trust Republicans more than Democrats to handle the economy, by a margin of 45-39. Scott Rasmussen notes that “this is the first time in over two years of polling that the GOP has held the advantage on this issue.” Last month, he had the Democrats holding a one-point lead, but they lost it in June’s polling.

And the Democratic leads over Republicans on their core issues are also dropping. Particularly interesting is the Democratic decline over healthcare, from an 18-point lead in May to only 10 points now.

A Gallup poll also confirms that the president’s personal ratings are high, but the underlying data less so. While 67 percent of voters give Obama personal favorable ratings and 61 percent approve of his job performance (Rasmussen has his job approval lower, at 55 percent), they give him much lower ratings on specific issues.

Gallup shows Obama getting only 55 percent approval on his handling of the economy (down from 59 percent in February) and finds that only 45 percent approve of his handling of federal spending while 46 percent approve of his treatment of the budget deficit.

As it becomes clearer that the deficit caused by spending has landed us in a new economic crisis, entirely of Obama’s own making, his popularity and job performance are likely to drop as well.

The old recession — that the public says was caused by Bush — shows signs of winding down. But the new recession and/or inflation — triggered by Obama’s massive deficits — is just now coming upon us.

If Obama refuses to cut back on his spending/stimulus plans (despite convincing evidence that Americans are not spending the money), he has three options:

a) He can raise taxes, which will trigger a deeper recession;

b) He can print money, which will trigger huge inflation;

c) He can pay more interest to borrow money, which will send the economy diving down again.

The blame for these outcomes will fall squarely on Obama’s deficit and spending policies. The fact that Americans are aware of these issues, and already disapprove of Obama’s performance on them, indicates that they will be increasingly receptive to blaming him for the “new” recession.

Interestingly, Obama’s polling is now the exact opposite of President Clinton’s in the days after Monica Lewinsky. Back then, the president’s approval for handling specific issues was his forte, while his job approval remained high but his personal favorability lagged 20 points behind. Ultimately, it is a politician’s performance on specific issues that determines his electability. Personal favorability withers in the face of issue differences. Obama is about to find out that you cannot rely on image to bolster your presidency when the underlying issues are crumbling.

All this data suggests that Obama might run out of steam just as he gets to his healthcare agenda. As unemployment mounts, month after month, and Obama’s claims of job creation (or savings) ring hollow, it is possible that he will not have the heft to pass his radical restructuring of the healthcare system. The automaton Democratic majority may pass it anyway, but it will be a one-way ticket to oblivion if they do."

3864  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / good article on: June 11, 2009, 02:45:15 PM
3865  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Tax Policy on: June 09, 2009, 08:26:47 AM
thanks for your thoughtful response.

I must think our founders are turning in their graves at the reality that Democrats are taxing certain groups of citizens in uneven ways and then doling out those founds to buy votes from their supporters, and THAT is precisely how they keep power.

And to boot they are expanding those on the dole to maintain this power - with conmfiscation of other people's wealth.

3866  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Tax Policy on: June 08, 2009, 03:49:15 PM
My understanding is the Constitution allows for government to set tax policy.

What I don't quite get is why is it ok for certain Americans to be targeted and discriminated against and their wealth confiscated and handed over to those less succesful.

Isn't there some sort of constitutional case against discrimination of one group of Americans?

First will be the lets get the rich.  Included in the "rich" category will be those who are higher level middle class.  Of course business will be thrashed.
Then will be more subtle and slow evolution of taxes on lower groups of middle class.

How can there not be some sort of constitutional case that protects some groups of Americans like this from this kind of discrimination?

Legal minds have any thoughts?

3867  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Food testing? on: June 07, 2009, 11:51:26 AM
Is this some sort of joke?
Is this routine for presidents to have someone test the food for poison?

Do we have a king or a President?
"President Obama's French food tested by 'taster' 
Jun 7 10:12 AM US/Eastern
A US "taster" tested the food being dished up to President Barack Obama at a dinner in a French restaurant, a waiter said on Sunday.
"They have someone who tastes the dishes," said waiter Gabriel de Carvalho from the "La Fontaine de Mars" restaurant where Obama and his family turned up for dinner on Saturday night.

"It wasn't very pleasant for the cooks at first, but the person was very nice and was relaxed, so it all went well," he said on the Itele news channel.

Asked by AFP to comment, the restaurant confirmed the report.

Copyright AFP 2008, AFP stories and photos shall not be published, broadcast, rewritten for broadcast or publication or redistributed directly or indirectly in any medium"
3868  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Politics of Health Care on: June 06, 2009, 11:02:21 AM
"Under the proposal, families would qualify for tax credits of $5,700 a year and individuals $2,300 to buy insurance and invest in health savings accounts. Up to one-fourth of any unspent money in the accounts could be rolled over to the next year. The bill would allow lower-income Americans a way out of the Medicaid trap"

How much do people on medicaid pay in taxes that this deduction is even going to apply to them?

3869  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Israel, and its neighbors on: June 04, 2009, 03:18:56 PM
I meant that today he gloriously notes his middle name.

And even though

I don't know if W is laughing or crying but I know our enemies are laughing.

Of course they love BO.

He has put our country on full scale retreat.

He is not Pres of the USA.  He is president of the united world of Obama.

Yet, there is no alternative on the horizon in most people's eyes.
3870  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Well that's it folks - the "genius argument" on: June 04, 2009, 02:56:56 PM
I guess that was the "genious argument" that will begin the healing process so we can all sing the pepsi generation song together.
I don't know if W is laughing or crying.

We "must do this", "we must do that" blah blah blah.
Thank God we finally have someone with all the answers.  How come no one had the brains and sense to figure this all out before?

Heavy on the sarcasm.

Not only are we screwed but so are the Israelis.

His middle name is todays gloriusly noted as Hussain.

Like I said all along, it ain't Joshua.
3871  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / I wondered if anyone would come up with this. on: June 04, 2009, 02:45:36 PM
Thanks for your opinion.

The answer is staring us straight in the face.

The biggest donors to the Democratic party is

Every American tax payer.

Without us they have nothing.

Without them we would have taxes, but nothing like what we do have.

The thought of wrking for several months out of the year so they can take my money to redistribute......
3872  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / anyone care to guess on: June 03, 2009, 06:26:33 PM
Who is/are the biggest donors to the democratic party?

Anyone care to guess?
3873  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: US Foreign Policy on: June 02, 2009, 02:12:41 PM
In his speech about Iran's rigth to nuclear technology he has to add this at the end.   He simply cannot resist beratin the US:

Obama added that there is a danger "when the United States, or any country, thinks that we can simply impose these values on another country with a different history and a different culture."

Do other people notice the incredible hypocrisy of this guy downing the US for imposing values while at the same time he has imposed more values, more of his agenda than any President in history on his electorate?

You know what the problem with him similar to Clinton - is the *deceit*, the deception, the down right lies.

The Democrats have made this into a an art form in US politics over the last two decades.

I can only imigane the speech he will give in Egypt this week.

3874  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Sotomayor on: June 01, 2009, 01:09:14 PM
I don't agree with all Noonan says but this I do:

"A conservative activist told the New York Times, "We need to brand her." Another told me a fight is needed to excite the base.

Excite the base? How about excite a moderate, or interest an independent? How about gain the attention of people who aren't already on your side?"

To me this is the problem with GOP in a nutshell.  Limbaugh et all can rant and rave all they wants.  The only ones who will agree with them are already believers.  He is not, and apparantly, can not win over any *new* converts.  And that is the problem.

Marc Levin who like a lot and mostly agree with states we need new blood, and new guard of Republicans in politics.  It is time to get rid of the old guard.  This is clearly obvious.
But we also need a new guard of spokespeople. And that includes Limbaugh.
3875  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Energy Politics & Science on: May 31, 2009, 01:03:03 PM
It's simple.  The technology to provide us with a satisfactory alternative to fossil fuel (other than nuclear) hasn't been invented yet.
3876  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Politics of Health Care on: May 31, 2009, 12:58:16 PM
Where I am patients are triaged.  Waits for the true emergencies are low but when the ED is busy some could wait for hours.
I don't see any other way.
All our lives are going to be nothing more than following mandates.
For doctors it already is that way, but it will get worse.

You should only use so much electricity, water, sugar, gas, oil, than the government hopes you do use more because then they can tax you/us.

Flush more than once per day per person per household then more can be confiscated.
Pelosi wants to inventory "everything".

I assume there will be a tax for too much TV, sitting, blogging, message boards.  Hey if your not walking your fat.  We tax for cigarettes alcohol why not for each pound you are over a certain BMI?

A National sales tax is coming. 

On and on.  Crafty you are so right.  We are totally screwed.
3877  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Political Rants on: May 31, 2009, 12:49:17 PM
France's President Nicolas Sarkozy in October 2008 proposed a brilliant formulation. He said: "The financial crisis is not the crisis of capitalism. It is the crisis of a system that has distanced itself from the most fundamental values of capitalism, which betrayed the spirit of capitalism."

Sarkozy said this?

Interesting a European is looking to the right.  And the President we are stuck with is and always has been looking the other way.
3878  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Hillbillary Clintons long, sordid, and often criminal history on: May 29, 2009, 10:20:13 AM
I was wrong. I thought the Clintons would control BO especially with many of his staff having been for them in the past.

By Dick Morris 05.28.2009 Published on on May 26,2009

Asked why he was naming some of his rivals to top administration jobs, President Lyndon B. Johnson said it best: “I’d rather have them inside the tent pissing out than outside pissing in.” President Obama seems to echo Johnson’s management style in his handling of Bill and Hillary Clinton. By bringing them into his inner circle, he has marginalized them both and sharply reduced their freedom of action.

It may appear odd to describe a secretary of State as marginalized, but Obama has surrounded Hillary with his people and carved up her jurisdiction geographically. Former Sen. George Mitchell (D-Maine) is in charge of Arab-Israeli relations. Dennis Ross has Iran. Former U.N. Ambassador Dick Holbrooke has Pakistan and Afghanistan. And Hillary has to share her foreign policy role on the National Security Council (NSC) with Vice President Biden, U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice, CIA chief Leon Panetta, and NSC staffer Samantha Powers (who once called Hillary a “monster”).

With peers who are competitors and subordinates who can deal directly with the president, Hillary is reduced to announcing foreign aid packages for Pakistan while Holbrooke does the heavy lifting.

Part of Hillary’s problem is the institutional shrinking of the State Department. During the Bush years, while war raged, the Defense Department became more relevant to the conduct of foreign policy. And, under Obama, the financial crisis has propelled the Treasury into the forefront. State, with its emphasis on traditional diplomacy, has been forced to take a back seat. Even though Obama appointed Hillary, he clearly has not been willing to make her a co-president and confines her to the diminished role of her department.

For his part, Bill Clinton has been asked to be a special envoy to Haiti. Yes, Haiti. Obama’s predecessor asked the former president to orchestrate the response to the Asian tsunami and then to Hurricane Katrina. Obama gives him Haiti.

Meanwhile, both Clintons are effectively muzzled and cannot criticize Obama even as he reverses President Clinton’s free market proclivities and budget balancing discipline. Hillary, the supposed friend of Israel, must sit by quietly and watch Iran get the bomb while trying all the while to stop Israel from preventing it.

Bill can’t even make money. Denied the ability to accept speeches from foreign governments or their organs and fenced out of continuing his profitable relationship with the Emir of Dubai, he and his wife must accept the loss of the $13 million they spent on her campaign and sit by passively, unable to earn the money to replace it.

Just as Lincoln buried his rivals Seward, Chase and Stanton in the Cabinet and then on the Supreme Court, and Wilson buried Bryan at the State Department, so Obama has hidden his predecessor and his rival in plain sight at the upper reaches of the government.

How long will Hillary subject herself to this discipline? Likely as long as Obama is popular. Should his ratings fade, she might move away from the president and could even consider a primary contest against him in 2012. But while he is on top of his game, she’ll stay loyal.

But she is shrinking by the day. Once Obama’s equal — and before that his superior — she now looks tiny compared to the president. She doesn’t look like a president in waiting; she’s more like a senior staff member hoping to rise in the bureaucracy. No longer at the head of a movement or the symbol of rising women all over the world, she has faded into the State Department woodwork. She is much less visible than her predecessors Henry Kissinger, George Schultz, James Baker, Madeleine Albright or Condi Rice. She is even less in the public eye than was Al Haig during his one-year tenure. One has to go back to the likes of Warren Christopher or William Rogers to find a secretary of State as far down the totem poll. This diminished status has got to grate on her and on him. But they are trapped in Obama’s web and cannot easily escape.****
3879  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Cognitive Dissonance of His Glibness on: May 29, 2009, 10:06:36 AM
And the dems said Bush was cocky?Huh

He's no Ronald Reagan.  Remember how Reagan got a lot done with *opposition* parties in both houses.

This guy is cruising through with essentially super majorities from the same party and an adoring news media who are of the same party persuasion:

Obama in L.A.: 'You ain't seen nothing yet' 
By Sam Youngman 
Posted: 05/27/09 11:51 PM [ET] 
LOS ANGELES — Even as he conceded there is still much hard work to do, President Obama was in a boastful mood Wednesday night, telling a star-studded crowd at a fundraising dinner that he "would put these first four months up against any prior administration since FDR."

The president, speaking to a dinner that included Hollywood A-listers like Kiefer Sutherland, Marisa Tomei, Jamie Foxx, Ron Howard and Steven Spielberg, lauded the legislation he has signed since taking office but added that he is "not satisfied."

 "I'm confident in the future, but I'm not yet content," Obama said.

The celebrity dinner, which cost couples $30,400 to attend, was followed by a larger, lower-dollar concert that all told raised between $3 million and $4 million for the Democratic National Committee (DNC).

Joining the celebrities feting Obama were Sen. Chris Dodd (D-Conn.) and Republican-turned-Democratic Sen. Arlen Specter (Pa.), "the newest member of our caucus."

Obama was introduced by Dreamworks CEO and longtime Democratic donor Jeffrey Katzenberg. The president thanked Katzenberg, saying: "If it weren't for you, we would not be in the White House."

The trip here came on the heels of a fundraising jaunt to Las Vegas to raise about $2 million for Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.), according to aides.

The president, while seeking to bolster his record as president so far, warned both audiences that significant challenges lie ahead.

 At the concert, headlined by Jennifer Hudson and Earth, Wind and Fire, Obama responded to an audience member yelling, "Yes we can" by saying, "Yes we have. But we've got more work to do. We can't rest on our laurels.

"We didn't ask for the challenges that we face, but we don't shrink from them either," he said. "It won't be easy. There will be setbacks. It will take time."

The president conceded that his administration "had our fits and starts."

"I've made some mistakes, and I guarantee you I'll make some more," he said.

But Obama said in promising to continue to work hard, "Los Angeles, you ain't seen nothing yet."

Obama also lauded Judge Sonia Sotomayor, his pick to replace retiring Supreme Court Justice David Souter, repeating his line that she has more experience than anyone currently sitting on the bench when they were nominated.

He joked at the second fundraiser that she graduated summa cum laude, "not just magna or laude laude, but summa cum laude."

Obama is scheduled to leave for Washington early Thursday morning.
3880  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Israel, and its neighbors on: May 28, 2009, 03:02:41 PM
"Why is obama marginalizing Israel?? he is going to force them to hit iran."

I was asking one of my patients who is Israeli about his thoughts on the Middle East:

"very bad, very very bad".

When I asked him about Iran,

"We have no choice but to hit Iran".

He added,

"I didn't vote for him but Bush was behind Israel 100%".

I guess he voted for Obama because I asked him why then are so many Jews for BO.  He just looked away.

He said Israel will wipe out all of Irans nucs but it will "take a million lives" with it.

I said how ironic the victoms of thousands of years of oppression (egyptians, hittites, babylonians, philistines, assyrians, persians, romans, most european countries, turks, and probably a dozen more) and the holocaust will now be put in the position of having to do this.

He said with a nod, "thank you" on that thought.

If and after they do this -

We know the world will of course blame the Jews, once again, or rather, as they always have.

BOs popularity will probably go up.  And that is what he is all about - staying high in the polls so he can rearrange the wealth of this country and in so doing make us weaker not stronger.

And the duped liberal Jews will of course make all sorts of excuses for him.

3881  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / or on: May 26, 2009, 12:05:14 PM
water boarding grin
3882  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Israel, and its neighbors on: May 26, 2009, 09:50:35 AM
I believe BO is resgined to a nuclear Iran.
His comment about giving talks another year is a joke.

It is probably already too late.
Bush was hamstrung by politics.  If Rumsfeld and Cheney did not lose their political power this might very well have been dealt with before the Iranians had years to dig in.

BO is selling Israel down the river.  No surprise there. 
Ironic so many liberal Jews are helping him do it.

3883  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / credit card companies on: May 22, 2009, 05:59:29 PM
Couldn't agree more:

By Dick Morris And Eileen McGann 05.22.2009 The widely heralded credit card reform legislation making its way through Congress is a sellout to the credit card companies. Obama has proposed and Congress has passed a series of minor reforms that deal with the fringes of the problem - late billings, retroactive interest rate hikes, misapplication of payments and such - but fail to reform the most basic offense of the companies: their usury.

Congress explicitly rejected any limitation on the interest rate credit card companies can charge. It remains perfectly legal for them to charge rates that would make a loan shark blush.
In our book Fleeced, we explain how, until 1979, credit card interest was subject to usury limits of the various states. But the Supreme Court emasculated these limits by ruling that the state of the lender, not of the borrower, had the sole power to legislate interest rate limits. South Dakota swiftly jumped into the void the Court created, eliminating any usury limits. All the credit card companies moved there and took advantage of the regulatory vacuum to hike up their rates to unconscionable levels.

Competition can do nothing to force down rates since 90% of the credit cards are issued by a handful of companies. And states are paralyzed when it comes to regulating rates.

It is up to Congress to act. Yet the credit card companies’ massive campaign donations succeeded in buying off enough Democrats and virtually all the Republicans to kill any limits on interest rates. So companies can continue to charge basic rates of 18 percent and then up to 30 percent as punishment for minor offenses like being a few days late in making payments.

But Obama and his Democratic allies are loudly proclaiming their success in fighting for the consumer despite their failure to use their majorities to afford any real protection form usurious interest rates.

Congress should have legislated a ceiling on regular interest rates limiting them to five points above prime and on punitive rates requiring them to be no more than ten points above prime. But Obama and the Democrats (and, of course, the Republicans) caved into the special interests and left out any interest rate controls.

The high rates charged by credit card companies obviously do a great deal to impede consumer spending and drive families into bankruptcy. The average credit card balance for those who have such debt is over $13,000. A 30 percent interest rate means more than $300 per month in interest payments alone!

It is cruel to see Obama offering the illusion of hope for credit card victims while denying them real relief.
3884  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Political Rants on: May 22, 2009, 11:24:16 AM
I've come to the conclusion that BO is the most dishonest President in my adult lifetime.
Only rivaling him in this regard would of course be Clinton.

Once his poll ratings drop we might start to hear the MSM actually call him on the incredible incongruities of his speeches and waht is actually happening. 
Until then, he is adored and we continue to get screwed by him and his anti America socialist gang.
3885  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Israel, and its neighbors on: May 22, 2009, 09:39:50 AM
"There is a Palestinian nation and an Israeli nation, and I care about both sides"

Unfortunately I doubt this is a majority opinion of most Palestinians.  It probably is from the Israeli point of view though I can't say for sure.

If it was we wouldn't be having Jews fighting for their lives.
3886  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / slight corrections to previous post on: May 21, 2009, 08:04:40 PM
One size or style or brand is best for all medical practice types or goals.

Correction: "is NOT best"

"Not least of which has been mentioned - gathering, monitoring, surveillancing health records for multiple imaginable purposes including but limited to control over

Correction:  "but NOT limited to"

Sorry. Sometimes I post without re reading and checking the language like I should.
3887  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Political Rants on: May 21, 2009, 07:58:03 PM
Thanks for your response.
I agree that it seems classier and better for those who are no longer in office not to criticize those still in or those who replaced them.
But the continued visciousness of BO and the rest is unprecedented in my memory. 
Certainly Cheney would not be doing this if not for the unending, and nastiness of the attacks persisting long after BO and the Dems won.
3888  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Political Rants on: May 21, 2009, 03:51:41 PM
"if I recollect immediately after losing the election, he didn't spend his energy trying to be in the limelight criticizing the Republican Party or the new President."

oh really?

I don't recall previous Presidents along with their legislative hound dogs attacking mercilessly predecessor Presidents and VPs.
I don't other PRes. going around the world and mocking to the world our previous leaders.

I don't recall other Pres. allowing "criminal like invesigations" into policies they disagree with - even after they won the Presidency.

I say good for Cheney to speak up.  Why he should just fade away and let Bama and Pelosi and the rest destroy his integrity - over what?  For doing what was necessary to keep us safe?
3889  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Politics of Health Care on: May 21, 2009, 03:46:15 PM
"Private insurance would face a host of new regulations, including a requirement to insure all applicants and a prohibition on pricing premiums on the basis of risk."

Personally I think it is necessary that insurance be available to all regardless of pre-existing conditions.  In reality many of these people go onto disability because that is the only way they can get medical care.  Or those who don't qualify wind up using more care down the road.

I do think that providing insurance to some should also come with the requirement that are partners in keeing costs down.  They follow doctors suggestions, at least make efforts to quit smoking, lose weight, take their medicines.  So I am not as sure that I agree with prohibition of pricing based on risk though - perhaps based on patient contribution to their own health and well being perhaps.

"Subsidies would be available to help middle-income people purchase insurance, while government programs such as Medicare and Medicaid would be expanded."

I dont know enough to commment on the merits of this.  But we all know that some of us will be bearing the extra burden of paying for these things.  Why is that fair?

"Finally, the government would subsidize and manage the development of a national system of electronic medical records."

There are so many vendors with so many products not all of which are compatible.  One size or style or brand is best for all medical practice types or goals.

I am not even sure how cost/benefit ratios work out for these.  But it is as inevitable as the internet is in general.
I am not electronic in my office.  I don't mind the government helping us subsidize this if it must be done.
But like anything the gov grants us it comes with strings attached.  Not least of which has been mentioned - gathering, monitoring, surveillancing health records for multiple imaginable purposes including but limited to control over delivery of care, outcomes data, rationing, delivery and following the adherence to "guidelines" ( to be developed by the big liberals in medical care at Yale and Harvard - many who are PhDs - not MDs), controlling and redirecting payments to providers based on their behavior as deemed appropriate not by them or their patients but by the bamas of the world.
3890  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / The evil empire was us.The world according.2.Jeff Sachs on: May 19, 2009, 02:23:08 PM
Feingold Blocks Bill to Honor Reagan
By Jackie Kucinich
Roll Call Staff
May 19, 2009, 12 a.m.
Republicans are trying to pass legislation in the next few weeks to kick off the commemoration of the 100th anniversary of Ronald Reagan’s birth, and the only hurdle appears to be Sen. Russ Feingold (D-Wis.), who is refusing to let the Senate vote on the bill.

Yesterday I was at a commencement at Lehigh and the speaker was Jeff Sachs the ultra liberal author economist.

He spoke about world poverty and world climate change.  Fair enough. Then he got political.  Jimmy Carter started to promote solar unitl Reagan came along and mocked Carter.   Reagan then elevated our military presence in the Persian Gulf to open up the oil spigets that sent us on the planetary suicidal mission of destroying our planet, increasing war in the middle east, keeping us energy dependent all the while destroying hopes for world peace, the end of starvation, ignorance, and poverty, through US imperialism and world domination.

He implied we thus had Somalia, drought and the persistance of all the ills of the world and our collision course with the world population explosion was all due to Reagan's wrong headed theories. So for the last thirty years we were on the wrong trajectory.
The whole concept of "country" and culture is Midieval(sp?).

These are the kinds of people running America today.
To them, Reagan is a destroyer of worlds.


3891  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Politics of Health Care on: May 19, 2009, 09:16:22 AM
JDN - that's it in a nutshell.  Speaking of vitual colonoscopy the imaging lobbyists who were set to make a bundle doing this test were of course outraged it was not approved for reimbursement by Medicare.  Of course it is all in the goal of better patient care.
And of course the gastroenterologist who may (or may not) lose out were delighted in the name of patient care that it was not approved.  Who does one believe?
Bottom line your right.  We either ration care, or we don't provide care to all, or/and we go broke.

And who does Gottlieb work for now?

"Medicare Shoots Down Virtual Colonoscopy Reimbursement (GE, SI)
Posted: May 12, 2009 at 4:26 pm

Today was a big day for the world of colonoscopies and the battle in detecting colon cancer and polyps.  The Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services issued a final decision that Medicare would not cover the reimbursement for virtual colonoscopies.  This is a blow for the medical imaging sector, particularly for leaders such as General Electric Co. (NYSE: GE) and Siemens AG (NYSE: SI).  This is also a blow in the battle for detecting of polyps or early stages of colon cancer.

The CMS noted in its memo, “The evidence is inadequate to conclude that CT colonography is an appropriate colorectal cancer screening test….  CT colonography for colorectal cancer screening remains noncovered.”

Whether you have to get a colonoscopy done the old fashioned way or virtually it still requires the material you have to consume to clear out the bowels.  The difference of a virtual or traditional method is rather simple.  The CT machine scan is a relatively non-invasive procedure besides an ingestion of a chemical marker and requires no real sedation followed by a CT/MRI scan.  For the traditional exam, sedation is required and a fiber optic camera on a flexible tube is inserted through the anus and snaked up all the way through your intestine.  Guess which one is more desirable if you are the patient.

Detecting colon cancer while it is a mere polyp or in the very early stages is far better from a cost-basis, a quality of life basis, and on the basis of what is a better use of the medical system.  The belief is that there would be many more colonoscopies conducted if this was approved in a virtual manner, and in theory much fewer colon cancer cases.  The downside to the virtual colonoscopy is that if polyps (or worse are detected, then a traditional colonoscopy and then whatever procedure would be required anyhow.

This is perhaps one of the first tests of what may or may not be coming down the pipe with the new healthcare system, yet this decision may be independent of any of the comparisons between the healthcare system of today versus the system of tomorrow.  Some form of universal healthcare is much more likely than ever.  That will be a welcome wagon for the army of uninsured or underinsured Americans.  For the rest of us we all really want to know what the new system will really be, and what sort of service we can expect.

When it comes to old fashioned colonoscopies versus the virtual colonoscopies, the CMS just said “Up Yours!”… Quite literally in this case."

3892  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Politics of Health Care on: May 18, 2009, 07:43:17 PM
I really don't have answers and was not playing coy.  It is that complicated.  Gottlieb it seems to me makes a lot of assumptions.
Some of his solutions are experimental.
Some doctors would do better if more people were covered, not worse.
I guess it depends on the saturation of doctors in the area.
Not many doctors could survive on cash only practices. No one would show up.
Or this one, Medicare's incentives are wrong.  Payments increase for those who stay sick.
Well of course.  The more one's legal problems persist the more one pays lawyers.  The more one's house falls apart the more we spend fixing it.
Were talking chronic progressives diseases.  Not problems that can be fixed forever in most instances.
Or pay based on outcomes?  Every human being and every situation is unique.

What about this one:

"The Burr-Coburn legislation notes that roughly 75 percent of American health-care expenditures go toward the treatment of five chronic but “largely preventable” diseases, and it would give states new incentives to lower the rates of these diseases. The bill would boost health-education efforts."

So is this implying if we live healthier 75% of health care costs could go away?

What kind of a statement is this?

Has this guy ever heard of aging?

I don't know.  The more I read about opinions on what should be done the more I think no one has a clue.

3893  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Cognitive Dissonance of His Glibness on: May 15, 2009, 10:26:59 AM
The guy who is applauding and with Dem houses is responsible for the largest speding bills in our hsitory says this and the MSM (except for fox and talk radio) sits back and lets him get away with this:

****By Roger Runningen and Hans Nichols

May 14 (Bloomberg) -- President Barack Obama, calling current deficit spending “unsustainable,” warned of skyrocketing interest rates for consumers if the U.S. continues to finance government by borrowing from other countries.

“We can’t keep on just borrowing from China,” Obama said at a town-hall meeting in Rio Rancho, New Mexico, outside Albuquerque. “We have to pay interest on that debt, and that means we are mortgaging our children’s future with more and more debt.”

Holders of U.S. debt will eventually “get tired” of buying it, causing interest rates on everything from auto loans to home mortgages to increase, Obama said. “It will have a dampening effect on our economy.”

Earlier this week, the Obama administration revised its own budget estimates and raised the projected deficit for this year to a record $1.84 trillion, up 5 percent from the February estimate. The revision for the 2010 fiscal year estimated the deficit at $1.26 trillion, up 7.4 percent from the February figure. The White House Office of Management and Budget also projected next year’s budget will end up at $3.59 trillion, compared with the $3.55 trillion it estimated previously.

Two weeks ago, the president proposed $17 billion in budget cuts, with plans to eliminate or reduce 121 federal programs. Republicans ridiculed the amount, saying that it represented one-half of 1 percent of the entire budget. They noted that Obama is seeking an $81 billion increase in other spending.

Entitlement Programs

In his New Mexico appearance, the president pledged to work with Congress to shore up entitlement programs such as Social Security and Medicare. He also said he was confident that the House and Senate would pass health-care overhaul bills by August.

“Most of what is driving us into debt is health care, so we have to drive down costs,” he said.

Obama prodded Congress to pass restrictions on credit-card issuers, saying consumers need “strong and reliable” protection from unfair practices and hidden fees.

“It’s time for reform that’s built on transparency, accountability, and mutual responsibility, values fundamental to the new foundation we seek to build for our economy,” the president said.

Obama called on Congress to send to him by May 25 a bill that would clamp down on what he says are sudden rate increases, unfair penalties and hidden fees. He also wants the measure to strengthen monitoring of credit-card companies.

House Bill

The U.S. House of Representatives passed the credit-card bill last month after adding a provision requiring banks to apply consumers’ payments to balances with the highest interest rates first. The bill also imposes limits on card interest rates and fees.

The Senate continued debating its version of the bill today. It would require credit-card companies to give 45 days’ notice before increasing an interest rate. It would prohibit retroactive rate increases on existing balances unless a consumer was 60 days late with a payment.

The president said Americans have been hooked on their credit cards and share some blame for the current system. “We have been complicit in these problems,” he said. “We have to change how we operate. These practices have only grown worse in the midst of this recession.”

The American Bankers Association, which represents card issuers, has warned lawmakers and the Obama administration against taking punitive action or setting requirements that are too stringent. Doing so, the lobby group says, would limit consumer credit and worsen a credit crunch.

Obama said that restrictions “shouldn’t diminish consumers’ access to credit.”

Uncollectible Debt

Uncollectible credit-card debt rose to 8.82 percent in February, the most in the 20 years that Moody’s Investors Service Inc. has kept records. Lawmakers have said they’re under increasing pressure from constituents to respond to rising interest rates and abrupt changes to consumers’ accounts.

Obama held a White House meeting last month with executives from the credit-card industry, including representatives from Bank of America Corp. and American Express Co. Afterward, he told reporters that credit-card issuers should be prohibited from imposing “unfair” rate increases on consumers and should offer the public credit terms that are easier to understand.

“The days of any time, any increase, anything goes -- rate hike, late fees -- that must end,” Obama said today at Rio Rancho High School. We’re going to require clarity and transparency from now on.”

He also said the steps he has taken to stimulate the economy and start the debate on overhauling the health-care system are beginning to take effect.

‘Beginning to Turn’

“We’ve got a long way to go before we put this recession behind us,” Obama said. “But we do know that the gears of our economy, our economic engine, are slowly beginning to turn.”

Taking questions from the audience, Obama repeated his stance that he wants legislation to overhaul the health-care system finished before the end of the year, saying it is vital to the economy.

Health-care costs are driving up the nation’s debt and burdening entitlement programs such as Medicare, the government- run insurance program for those 65 and older and the disabled.

The programs’ trustees reported May 13 that the Social Security trust fund will run out of assets in 2037, four years sooner than forecast, and Medicare’s hospital fund will run dry by 2017, two years earlier than predicted a year ago.****
3894  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Politics of Health Care on: May 15, 2009, 10:19:23 AM
I disagree with most of this.
3895  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / FYI, Another forgotten plague on: May 13, 2009, 07:49:47 PM
"the Little Ice Age kicked off with the Great Famine of 1315.  Crops failed due to cold temperatures and incessant rain.  Desperate and starving, parents ate their children, and people dug up corpses from graves for food.  In jails, inmates instantly set upon new prisoners and ate them alive.

The Great Famine was followed by the Black Death, the greatest disaster ever to hit the human race"

While no one will ever now for sure of course, an earlier plague could have been evern worse.  Know as the plague of Justinian, a Byzantine emperor who were it not for this plague that killed him and perhaps 100 million others might have actually revived the Roman empire between 500 and 600 AD (This was on I think "Lost Worlds" an interesting cable science show):

****Plague of Justinian
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
The Plague of Justinian was a pandemic that afflicted the Byzantine Empire, including its capital Constantinople, in the years 541–542 AD. The most commonly accepted cause of the pandemic is bubonic plague, which later became infamous for either causing or contributing to the Black Death of the 14th century. Its social and cultural impact is comparable to that of the Black Death. In the views of 6th century Western historians, it was nearly worldwide in scope, striking central and south Asia, North Africa and Arabia, and Europe as far north as Denmark and as far west as Ireland. The plague would return with each generation throughout the Mediterranean basin until about 750. The plague would also have a major impact on the future course of European history. Modern historians named it after the Eastern Roman Emperor Justinian I, who was in power at the time and himself contracted the disease.
The outbreak may have originated in Ethiopia or Egypt and moved northward until it reached metropolitan Constantinople. The city imported massive amounts of grain to feed its citizens—mostly from Egypt—and grain ships may have been the original source of contagion, with the massive public granaries nurturing the rat and flea population.

The Byzantine historian Procopius records that, at its peak, the plague was killing 10,000 people in Constantinople every day, although the accuracy of this figure is in question and the true number will probably never be known for sure; what is known is that there was no room to bury the dead, and bodies were being left stacked in the open. The Byzantine Emperor Justinian I ensured that new legislation was swiftly enacted so as to deal more efficiently with the glut of inheritance suits being brought as a result of the plague deaths (Moorhead, J., 1994).

Justinian had expended huge amounts of money for wars against the Vandals in the Carthage region and the Ostrogoth Kingdom of Italy. He had also dedicated significant funds to the construction of great churches like the Hagia Sophia. Amidst these great expenditures, the plague's effects on tax revenue were disastrous. As the plague spread to port cities around the Mediterranean, it gave the struggling Goths new opportunities in their conflict with Constantinople. The plague weakened the Byzantine Empire at the critical point at which Justinian's armies had nearly wholly retaken Italy and could have credibly reformed the Western Roman Empire. It also may have contributed to the success of the Arabs a few generations later in the Byzantine-Arab Wars.[1]

The long term effects on European and Christian history were enormous. Justinian's gambit was ultimately unsuccessful. The overextended troops could not hold on. When the plague subsided, they were able to retake Italy but not to move further north. They held it for the remainder of Justinian's life, but the empire quickly lost it after he died. Italy was decimated by war and fragmented for centuries as the Lombard tribes invaded the north.
Ancient historians did not hold to modern standards of fact-checking or numerical accuracy. The actual number of deaths will always be uncertain. Modern scholars believe that the plague killed up to 5,000 people per day in Constantinople at the peak of the pandemic. It ultimately killed perhaps 40% of the city's inhabitants. The initial plague went on to destroy up to a quarter of the human population of the eastern Mediterranean. New, frequent waves of the plague continued to strike throughout the 6th, 7th and 8th centuries AD, often more localized and less virulent. It is estimated that the Plague of Justinian killed as many as 100 million people across the world.[2][3] Some historians such as Josiah C. Russell (1958) have suggested a total European population loss of 50 to 60% between 541 and 700.[4]

After 750, major epidemic diseases would not appear again in Europe until the Black Death of the 14th century.****
3896  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Interrogation methods on: May 13, 2009, 07:35:16 PM
Frankly I don't believe for a second that BO changed course on the relese of the alleged torture pictures because he was concerned about the safety of our troops.  It seems far more likely to me this was his excuse to back out because of the exposure it would lead to his buddy liberal dems who knew and supported enhanced interrogation techniques from day one.

No question BO was left with a mess.  I think he is turning a mess into a disaster.
Now if only Repubs can groom some smart communicators.
I cannot be convinced though that simply saying less taxes, get out of the way and let the chips fall where they may is going to attract new people away from a party that promises everything for nothing.

3897  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Science, Culture, & Humanities / fascinating.eom on: May 13, 2009, 07:13:57 PM
3898  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: Anti-semitism & Jews on: May 12, 2009, 12:37:05 PM
With regards to Buchanan he has also been supporter of Israel's existence.
I can't seem to find any online evidence of him respoding to these criticisms though there is a lot about his comments over the years but more in the past (pre2000).  I would like to hear him respond now about it.

JDN's post about the difference with pointing out a truth that most studio heads in Hollywood may be Jewish is not the same as being anti semitic IMO.

As a Jew I am also comfortable saying that many Jews are the architects behind the big liberal Democrat machines such as the Clinton and Bama expresses.

I am dismayed that my fellow Jews think this is smart and so good for this country.
I've wanted but never took the time to ask radio host Mark Levin why he thinks this is so.
Being a strict Jewish conservative (not common) I would be interested in his take.
We have discussed this on this forum before and I have my theories.

I don't hate liberal Jews for being Jewish but I do hate that liberal Jews think that way. 
There is no changing their minds. 

One can be critical of Israel and or that Jews put Israel before America without being anti semitic.  But it is hard to be clear of motives of such ciritics.  And OTOHI can understand their sensitivities.   I mean Jews have for centuries been the object of oppression.  It often started as simple criticism.  Later to pogrums, inquisitions, and genocide.   
3899  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Politics of Health Care on: May 12, 2009, 10:51:45 AM
"and limit government management over what are inherently personal transactions between doctors and patients"

One other thought.

Ther real question is thus should private insurance carriers limit care or government?

That is the "to be or not to be question" at the bottom line.

So who would one rather have limiting or controlling care?  Private insurance administrators or government bureaucrats?

Personally I don't have a fondness for either.
3900  Politics, Religion, Science, Culture and Humanities / Politics & Religion / Re: The Politics of Health Care on: May 12, 2009, 08:59:53 AM
Isn't this the same Gottleib who wrote a biotech newsletter for Gilder?

"Among the promising examples of private innovation in health-care delivery: In Pennsylvania, the Geisinger Clinic's "warranty" program, where providers take financial responsibility for the entire episode of care;"

This I want nothing to do with.  Do you want your doctor deciding between ordering more care or saving him/herself money at every turn?   This "option" is something that I am reading more and more about and its not a good idea.

"or the experience of the Blue Cross Blue Shield plans in Pennsylvania, Michigan and Virginia, where doctors are paid more for delivering better outcomes."  This is too general a statement.  If he means better BP control, better diabetes control - mabye.

"There are plenty of alternatives to Mr. Obama's plan that expand coverage to the uninsured, give them the chance to buy private coverage like Congress enjoys, and limit government management over what are inherently personal transactions between doctors and patients."

Why in the part above he points to ways that increase insurance carriers management between doctors and patients.  So it winds up being wealthier people can afford to pay off the carriers to not intrude into that relationship.

"Rep. Nydia Velazquez (D., N.Y.) has introduced a bipartisan measure, the Small Business Cooperative for Healthcare Options to Improve Coverage for Employees (Choice) Act of 2009, that would make it cheaper and easier for small employers to offer health insurance. Mr. Obama would also get bipartisan compromise on premium support for people priced out of insurance to give them a wider range of choices. This could be modeled after the Medicare drug benefit, which relies on competition between private plans to increase choices and hold down costs. It could be funded, in part, through tax credits targeted to lower-income Americans."

I don't know.  Lower income Americans already pay little in taxes.  Gottleib actually thinks this will make it easier and cheaper for Small Business to pay for employee health care?  Tax credits to these people?  Isn't the tax code already too complicated?

Folks, Gottlieb makes it sound like its so simple and the answers are staring us in the face.
There really is only one answer that is staring me in the face.  You want to hold down costs, you want to add tens of millions of people to the roles.  Than we have to ration care.   There is no other answer.  Paying providers based on "outcomes" is often a code word for this folks.  It is based on large populations, not an individuals unique medical situation.  You will have liberals in DC and Boston, and New Haven deciding what is  best and that will become the dictum. 
Yes waste can be squeezed out of the system but it will never do enough of what the politians are saying it will without significant rationing of care. 
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