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Yeah, Do We Need to Protect Men, Too?

‘Cuz ya know, there is that 4-hour warning signal.

Senator Nina Hall (D-Cleveland) put out a call for co-sponsors to a proposed bill (SB-37) with this initiating paragraph:

I will be introducing a bill to address an issue that has gone unaddressed for far too long. The diligence with which men in state legislatures across the nation have considered the fragile health and feeble minds of women has prompted me to reflect on the welfare of the more powerful breed: men.

Via Karoli at Crooks & Liars who has the low-down.

Thus, Senate Bill 307 protects men by requiring the following prior to receiving a prescription to treatment for erectile dysfunction:

  • a signed affadavit from at least one sex partner confirming the man has indeed experienced the symptoms of impotence in the past 90 days
  • a psychological screening to ensure the condition is, in fact, medical in nature
  • ongoing cardiac stress tests and outpatient counseling about potential side effects
  • information from the prescribing physician about risks, complications as well as non-medical options including counseling and celibacy
  • copy of medical rationale for treatment filed in patient’s medical record

She’s serious.


Paul Ryan’s ties to Health Insurance

Still fuming over Rep. Paul Ryan’s quote, “This isn’t a budget. This is a cause” and happened upon some actually interesting economic analysis.

During his little press conference, Ryan had invoked the name of Alice Rivlin referring to his stupidly named ‘Path to Prosperity’ as part of the Ryan-Rivlin Plan.  In seeking out something on the connection between Ms. Rivlin and Mr. Ryan there was this bit of analysis regarding Medicare vs insurance:

Whether traditional Medicare could survive as an option, in the sort of system Rivlin says she envisions, is open to question and would depend, in part, on the regulations governing the whole system. But, at least in principle, she wouldn’t force people into private insurance. The new Ryan plan would.

Just the other day someone had sent this link via Twitter tying in Paul Ryan’s bribes political donations from the “insurance industry” which at the time seemed just benign information.  Now it’s more like fodder. Continue reading

A Few Tiny Thoughts on Nullification

Update:  I started this over last weekend, however there’s been quite a bit of movement making it almost irrelevant.

Now that Egypt is free and my tweeter feed isn’t ablaze I’ve been able to focus on more local issues which is how this tweet caught my attention which gave a link to ThinkProgress written  by Ian Millhiser entitled, Idaho Nullificationists Poised To Kill Medicaid In That State.  The closing paragraph from Ian’s post:

ThinkProgress previously reported that the leading proponents of Idaho’s nullification bill — including Idaho Gov. Butch Otter (R) — decided to move forward with this ill-considered proposal after reading a book on nullification by leading Confederate apologist Tom Woods. As it turns out, there are very real consequences when state officials abandon the advice of real legal experts in favor of crackpot pseudo-historians like Woods. One of those consequences could be the end of Medicaid in Idaho.

Notwithstanding the possible loss of Medicaid funding that would directly affect my 28 year-old developmentally delayed nephew, I wanted to find why nullification was drawing such a strong, decided response from Idaho’s legislators.  Not to mention how not only Idaho’s governor but several Idaho legislators ‘just happened to have’ copies of a book that specifically promotes nullification as a method for “fighting federal tyranny” in the ‘battle’ currently being used as a legal strategy against the Patient Protection & Affordable Health Care Act, fondly referred to as “Obamacare” by idiots everywhere.  The book: ‘Nullification: How to Resist Federal Tyranny in the 21st Century’ is written by Thomas Woods, Jr., a Harvard/Columbia educated historian.  The reason for Inadvertently  found the reason why good ole’ boy Butch and GOP legislators had the book. Continue reading

Throwing Around ‘Obamacare’

Just an observation…

This morning on the way to and from an appointment I had the radio on.  As I often do I had it on ‘scan.’  As the radio paused for two seconds at each FM station, i noticed something.  The so-labeled Christian stations were all discussing “Obamacare” and, of course, its repeal.

Two things I thought about:

  • 1) The labeling it ‘Obamacare.’  Labeling it as such reminds those who didn’t vote for the president that they didn’t and this is his folly.   It may or may not be directly related to their vision of race relations in this country.
  • 2) In discussing the repeal, it’s all about taking away something that will benefit those who cannot afford certain aspects of health care or simply cannot afford health care.  What about the adage of helping those in the name of Christ?  Why would you take that away?

Just some disjointed thoughts while driving this morning.


The Hilarity of Absurdity

Please note this asshole’s occupation.

And as was handily pointed out, once again – the motto of the ReTHUGS:

“As long as I have mine – FUCK YOU!”

According to an account from a Capitol Hill staffer in Politico, newly elected Maryland congressman Andy Harris — who ran on an anti-health care reform platform — wanted to know why it was taking so long for him to get his government-subsidized health care.

He demanded to know during freshman orientation why his government health care wouldn’t kick in for a month, according to the account. It starts in February, a month after he’s sworn in, something he says is unusual and, according to one of his staffers, inefficient.


The ONLY place I ‘worked’ where health care kicked in immediately was the military.

Most of my adult life has been working for medicos – hospital or clinics – and there, the only exception was with the radiology group in Ohio; it was 2 weeks.   Otherwise it ranged from 30 to 91 days – covering the 90-day probationary period.

Are NONE of these people connected to reality?


Would Health Care Reform Help You?

Many obstacles and stumbling blocks remain in the way of health care reform. The House and Senate bills will have to be merged, and then the House and Senate both will vote on the final bill. We don’t yet know what will be in the final bill, or if the final bill will be passed into law. Passage will be especially difficult in the Senate, where it will need 60 votes to pass. It is still possible that after all this angst, just one grandstanding senator could kill the whole thing.

But just for fun, let’s look at what conventional wisdom says will be in the final bill and see if there is anything in it that will be an immediate benefit to people with mesothelioma cancer and other asbestos-related disease.

It is likely that the final bill will provide additional funding for state high-risk insurance pools. Currently more than 30 states run such pools, which are nonprofit, state-sponsored health insurance plans for people who can’t buy insurance because of pre-existing conditions. The biggest problem with such pools is that, often, the insurance they offer is too expensive for many who might need it. Both the Senate and House bills provide $5 billion in subsidies for state high-risk pools to make the insurance more affordable.

Under the Senate bill, beginning in 2014, private companies would no longer be able to deny coverage to adults with pre-existing conditions, nor could they charge higher premiums for people with pre-existing conditions. Until then, the state high-risk pools could provide some help.

Closing the Medicare Part D coverage gap — also called the “doughnut hole” — is another potential provision that could help some patients with asbestos-related disease. The “doughnut hole” is the gap between the coverage for yearly out-of-pocket expenses provided by Medicare Part D and Medicare’s “catastrophic coverage” threshold.

For example, in 2009 Medicare Part D paid at least 75 percent of what patients paid for prescription drugs up to $2,700. After that, patients must pay for all of their prescription medications until what they have paid exceeds $6,154. At that point, the catastrophic coverage takes over, and Medicare pays for all but 5 percent of the patient’s drug bills. The final health care reform bill probably will provide for paying at least 50 percent of out-of-pocket costs in the doughnut hole.

You may have heard the bills include budget cuts to the Medicare program, and this has been a big concern to many people. Proponents of the bill insist that savings can be found to pay for the cuts, and that people who depend on Medicare won’t face reduced services. But this is a complex issue that I want to address in a later post.

The long-term provisions probably will include many other provisions that would benefit patients with asbestos-related disease, including increased funding for medical research. Although there are many complaints about the bill coming from all parts of the political spectrum, on the whole it would be a huge benefit to many people.

Barbara O’Brien

C-SPAN2 Sunset ….. Upcoming vote

Just watched Sen. Max Baucus run through a litany of what he says will be brought to those Americans who are in need of health insurance.   I’m not a fan of Baucus’, but it was a decent listing.

Chris Dodd (D-CT) is speaking now.  Why does this debate matter?  And why are you watching C-SPAN on a Saturday evening.   (Um, it was either CSPAN  or TruTV’s ‘World’s Dumbest Criminals’ – which I actually enjoy.)

Oh, Christ – Mitch McConnell.  What’s that phrase – I’d rather listen to fingernails across a chalkboard.

….. Here’s Harry Reid.   My C-SPAN2 stream is getting kind of blinky…

I’m not understanding the hesitancy to have a debate, which is what this vote was all about.   The vote was 60-39 to.  Every single Democrat voting ‘aye.’   Continue reading

It’s a Beautiful Day on C-SPAN2 – II

The afternoon session:  Right now I’m watching Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN),  Paul Kirk (D-MA) – who took the ‘seat’ of Ted Kennedy after Ted’s death in August; Ben Cardin (D-MD), Jack Reed (D-RI) …… I actually like Jack Reed, and Ed Kaufman (D-DE).  Ya know Amy; she’s Al Franken’s pal from Minnesota.

I could no longer listen to the silly ravings from one of the major assholes, Orin Hatch. He’s just such a fucking snake.  I swear if I were drowning and he threw me a lifeline, I’d be hard pressed to grab it ‘cuz I’m pretty damned sure it would made of cement.

Ed Kaufman railed on the lack of competition and a list that has the level of competition in the states of the union.  You have to go down the list and hit #40, Oregon, before you find competition.  At least that’s what I think was his point.

Sen Kay Hagan (D-NC)  has been brought in, and she’s talking gender discrepancies, preexisting conditions, and how who her two children – both in their mid-20s – who have the same health insurance coverage and yet Hagan’s daughter pays more  than her brother. Continue reading

It’s a Beautiful Day on C-SPAN2

I’ve been watching, and will be watching for most of the day, the ongoing ‘discussion’ in the Senate on the Reid/Democrat(?) Health Bill (Sen. Brownback)

The chair when I signed on was Maria Cantwell (D-WA).  First up was Sen. Kristin Gillibrand (D-NY); only caught a few minutes of her.  Then the  Rhode Island senator, Sheldon Whitehouse wherein he immediately said, “the irony department of the Republican party …” and I finished the line in my head – ‘is working overtime.’  Of course, Sen Whitehorse echoed my head.

Sen. Landrieu did say she would vote to proceed on the debate of the bill.  She’ll stand with Reid and the Democratic party.

Now we have three white guys, ReThugs:  Hatch (R-UT), Sam Brownback (R-KS), & Mike Johanns (R-NE) talking about women can CHOOSE to get ANY insurance THEY want, ‘cuz they can CHOOSE.  They alternating between each other like a trio of idiots.

It’s all about abortion and the conscience clause with them.  It’s not about health care at all.  Pages 116-124….. radical abortion agenda….especially damaging…..bad policy…..written behind closed doors…..how come they didn’t adopt the Stupak amendment.  …. fuck!  “Radical language! (Brownback)

updates as elicited or when pissed off enough

Using Nazi Imagery

This has just got to the most disgusting characterization I’ve seen during the back and forth on the health care discussion over the past several months.  I started this last week after seeing the signage below at the tea party ‘press conference’ tea party attended by Michelle Bachmann, John Culberson, Boehner among others.

My assignment to the 30th Field Hospital, Flak Kaserne, was in Augsburg, Germany and was approximately 25 or so miles from Dachau.   We did visit – once.  Once was enough. The picture shown above, making the rounds of blogs, is similar to one I have in slide form taken while visiting the museum at Dachau.  Enormous boards had pictures plastered on them and were scattered throughout the ‘old’ museum at Dachau, along with pictures of Hitler in various setting where in most, Hitler’s face was scratched over – like a car that’s been keyed.  Nothing at Dachau provoked any humor. Continue reading