Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Last Call For Seeing Red

Meet South Carolina's Luis Lang, the latest victim of Obama Derangement Syndrome endemic to red states.

Lang is a self-employed handyman who works with banks and the federal government on maintaining foreclosed properties. He has done well enough that his wife, Mary, hasn’t had to work. They live in a 3,300-square-foot home in the Legacy Park subdivision valued at more than $300,000. 
But he has never bought insurance. Instead, he says, he prided himself on paying his own medical bills
That worked while he and his wife were relatively healthy. But after 10 days of an unrelenting headache, Lang went to the emergency room on Feb. 25. He says he was told he’d suffered several mini-strokes. He ran up $9,000 in bills and exhausted his savings. Meanwhile, his vision worsened and he can’t work, he says. 
That’s when he turned to the Affordable Care Act exchange. Lang learned two things: First, 2015 enrollment had closed earlier that month. And second, because his income has dried up, he earns too little to get a federal subsidy to buy a private policy. 
Lang, a Republican, says he knew the act required him to get coverage but he chose not to do so. But he thought help would be available in an emergency. He and his wife blame President Obama and Congressional Democrats for passing a complex and flawed bill. 
(My husband) should be at the front of the line because he doesn’t work and because he has medical issues,” Mary Lang said last week. “We call it the Not Fair Health Care Act.”

So to recap, Lang refused to buy insurance because OBAMA TYRANNY, and when he needed to buy it, he couldn't because of the enrollment period issues, and when he then needed the safety net of Medicaid expansion, he lives in a red state where that OBAMA TYRANNY too is prohibited, so of course it's 100% Obama's fault he's about to lose his eyesight.

I do actually empathize with the man, but the fact of the matter is when you make the choice to do everything in your power to make sure the Affordable Care Act doesn't work, vote for people who will make sure the law doesn't work, and support other people making the choice to cripple the law so that it doesn't work, and then are furious when you discover that the law doesn't work, whose fault is that in the end?

There are a lot of people that Luis Lang could blame, but considering under the pre-Obamacare system that Lang never would have been able to get coverage for his eye surgery because every insurance company would have turned him down for diabetes as a pre-existing condition, maybe President Obama isn't the person he should be mad at.

Stopped Clock Is Right Alert

Today's contestant: Former Texas Gov. Rick Perry, at a South Carolina barbecue.

Something I want you all to think about is that the next president of the United States, whoever that individual may be, could choose up to three, maybe even four members of the Supreme Court,” he said. “Now this isn't about who's going to be the president of the United States for just the next four years. This could be about individuals who have an impact on you, your children, and even our grandchildren. That's the weight of what this election is really about.” 
“That, I will suggest to you, is the real question we need to be asking ourselves,” he continued. “What would those justices look like if, let's be theoretical here and say, if it were Hillary Clinton versus Rick Perry? And if that won't make you go work, if I do decide to get into the race, then I don't know what will.”

Yes.  Rick Perry was 100% right about something actually important.  Steve Benen explains:

To appreciate why, consider a chart.
If we assume that the current court does not change for the remainder of the Obama presidency – and really, no one can even say that for sure – three justices will be at least 80 by Inauguration Day 2017. Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg will be 83. (In the chart, blue lines refer to justices appointed by Democratic presidents; red lines refer to justices appointed by Republican presidents.) 
The significance of these statistics is important: as the Bloomberg Politics piece added, “The average retirement age for a U.S. Supreme Court justice is 78.7, a 2006 study in the Harvard Journal of Law and Public Policy found.”

Imagine what the Court would look like with Scalia and Kennedy replaced by Hillary Clinton picks.

Now imagine what the Court would look like with Ginsberg and Breyer replaced by Jeb Bush's nominees.

Still think there's no difference between the two parties, and no reason to vote for Hillary Clinton if she's the nominee?

Going Ben-nanas

You know, it's getting to the point where I could just run the blog for a week or six on Ben Carson's FOX News appearances alone, like this campaign stop back on Sunday.

GOP presidential candidate Dr. Ben Carson appeared on “Fox News Sunday” where he spoke with host Chris Wallace about some of his more far-out (read: bananas) policy proposals. The Tea Party’s golden boy is known for promoting a number of ill-considered stances, from the healthcare savings account to his fervent opposition of the legalization of same-sex marriage. The most offensively ignorant of these policies, however, is his support of a flat tax rate, in which every American pays the exact same tax rate.

“I like the idea of a proportional tax, that way you pay according to your ability, and I got that idea, quite frankly, from the Bible, tithing. You make $10 billion a year, you pay a billion; you make $10 a year, you pay one. You get the same rights. That’s pretty darn fair if you ask me.” Carson argued. “Now some people say [the flat tax is] not fair because, you know, the poor people can’t afford to pay that dollar. That’s very condescending. You know, I grew up very poor. I’ve experienced every economic level, and I can tell you that poor people have pride, too. And they don’t want to be just taken care of.”

Gotta punish those awful poor people.  If there's one thing all the GOP candidates have in common, it's that people making minimum wage have it too good in the US, and it's high time that we really squeezed the bastards.

“But Doctor, here is the problem with a flat tax in the real world,” Wallace pushed back. “According to the Tax Policy Center, to raise the same amount of revenue we do now, the tax rate would have to be in the low-to-mid 20 percent range.”

That means that low- and middle-income families would get an enormous tax hike while wealthier families would end up getting a tax cut. 
“I don’t agree with that assessment,” Carson said.

Of course he doesn't.  Flat tax means massive, massive spending cuts in order to stop those massive tax increases. Everyone knows that.

Especially Ben Carson.


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