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February 21, 2014 11:20 PM UTC

Weekend Open Thread

  • by: Colorado Pols

"Pretensions to moral superiority are devastatingly destructive."

–Mary Douglas


57 thoughts on “Weekend Open Thread

    1. Oh, the Irony: Conservatives are the same all over the world, and in many types of governments.

      • Religious "freedom" as rationale for discrimination? Check.
      • Repression of sexuality? Check.
      • Brutal political repression of opposition? Check.
      • Hatred of immigrants and promotion of racism? Check.
      • Low tax rates and crumbling infrastructure? Check.
      • Corporate profits sky-high, while inequality expands? Check.
      • Corruption as the dominant political paradigm? Check.
      • Environmental degradation as the price for "progress"? Check.

      All of the failed proletariat dictatorships, including modern Russia and China, have more in common with Islamist states such as Egypt and Afghanistan than they do with modern democracies. Except, as Jon Stewart points out, that some of our conservatives really, really want what these authoritarian states have.

      Now I understand Rocco's characterization of conservatives as "Pinkos".


    2. I see they're maintaining the proud old  tradition of unleashing the Cossacks on troublesome groups of people. I thought that was so yesterday. Who knew?

  1. Obamacare Attack Ad May Actually Expose Obamacare Success Story

    The conservative nonprofit Americans for Prosperity, which counts the Koch Brothers among its backers, recently poured a million dollars into TV, radio and online ads inMichigan's hotly contested Senate race between Rep. Gary Peters (D-Mich.) and former Michigan Secretary of State Terri Lynn Land (R).

    The newest ad released by AFP airs the testimony of Julie Boonstra, who is fighting leukemia and had her insurance plan canceled when Obamacare went into effect.Hundreds of thousands of insurance policies were canceled this year for not meeting Affordable Care Act guidelines.

    "Now, the out-of-pocket costs are so high, it's unaffordable," Boonstra says in the ad. "If I do not receive my medication, I will die…"

    … the Affordable Care Act also caps out-of-pocket costs — deductibles, co-payments and co-insurance fees that a patient pays — for essential health benefits. Themaximum out-of-pocket costs for an individual plan in 2014 is $6,350.

    Russell sent HuffPost this statement from Boonstra about her new plan. "It's totally unaffordable to me," she says, adding, "As I had stated, when I picked up Blue Care Network, it was an expensive plan, but it met my needs. In order for me to have that plan, I basically sold my house, drained my savings account. My 401k plan was gone, but it was a priority. I'm here today because of it. Now, I don't know how I'm going to afford any of this."

    Before her insurance policy was canceled, Boonstra paid $13,200 a year in premiums, not counting any out-of-pocket costs for which she may have been responsible. Under her new plan, her annual premium has been cut to $6,852. Her out-of-pocket expenses are capped by the Affordable Care Act at $6,350, which adds up to a maximum annual expense of $13,202 — just two dollars more than what she previously paid in premiums.




    1. DP, So are the people who claim they have larger than $6,000 deductables making things up or has the cap on the maximum out of pocket expense, like 20 some other deadlines, been extended?

      Like you, I am getting tired of all the whinning about Obamacare.

      If you have been screwed by Obamacare, and you are a Dem or you voted for Obama and Udall, just shut up.  It is your fault.

      If you are not a Dem and you did not vote for Obama and Udall, you can consider yourself another victim of the state.  You can join the millions of Germans, Russians,Chinese and Cambodians that have come before you.  

      Or you can fight like hell to make sure that your fate, and that of your family, is not similarly determined by the state.

      Your choice.

    2. DP,  I think I found the answer.

      Your information came from, the Obamacare site.  If you think the government's web site might know what the current state of the healthcare law is, you would be wrong.

      It fails to mention that the deadline was extended.  Who would have thought, another lie from the Obama administration about Obamacare.

      This is from Forbes:

      According to the law, the limits on out-of-pocket costs for 2014 were $6,350 for individual policies and $12,700 for family ones. But in February, the Department of Labor published a little-noticed rule delaying the cap until 2015. The delay was described yesterday by Robert Pear in the New York Times.

      Notes Pear, “Under the [one-year delay], many group health plans will be able to maintain separate out-of-pocket limits for benefits in 2014. As a result, a consumer may be required to pay $6,350 for doctors’ services and hospital care, and an additional $6,350 for prescription drugs under a plan administered by a pharmacy benefit manager.”


      1. "According to the law, the limits on out-of-pocket costs for 2014 were $6,350 for individual policies and $12,700 for family ones."

        "Notes Pear, “Under the [one-year delay], many group health plans will be able to maintain separate out-of-pocket limits for benefits in 2014"

        The Forbes article you referenced compares apples to pears.
        – See more at:

    3. Lies, distortion, conveniently omitted facts….that's all the GOP and their Masters have left to fight with.  Anyone else notice how desperate they're all becoming?  

    4. When honest research is done into these "Obamacare scandals", they all work out the same: people saved money and got better medical care under the Affordable Care Act. I have yet to read of a single verified case where that is not true.

      1. Verified by you is a tough standard.  

        Last week when someone died and it was blamed by their kin as being caused by Obamacare, you claimed they were not dead because you could not find an obituary.

      2. You will have about another 400,000 just in Colorado to research. 

        I have seen some of the ads and they are coming.

        You guys really have no idea how many people you have hurt.

        Have a nice weekend.

    5. I'm going out to canvass for the Affordable Care Act this morning. I'm looking forward to informing my neighbors of what their options are to #getcovered.

      1. Maybe you can sign up someone like Julia Boonstra.  She has leukemia.  Here are the facts:

        • Julie Boonstra has leukemia.
        • She had a plan that she liked.
        • She lost it.
        • She doesn’t think that her alternative options are acceptable*.
        • But back to the previous point: she was told that she could keep her plan.
        • She lost it.
        • Gary Peters voted for Obamacare, and Obamacare is the reason why Julie Boonstra lost her plan.

        I am uncertain why the Peters campaign thinks that attacking a woman who has leukemia – and make no mistake; they’re calling her a liar in this cease-and-desist letter – will make people like their candidate better.

        I can see Mark Udall now.

        You don't have leukemia?

        You didn't have a plan you liked?

        You didn't lose your plan?  (Already tried that one.)

        I didn't vote for the ACA?

        I didn't promise you you could keep your plan?

        Oh, no.  Barack?  What do I say now?

        1. Ultimately, she enrolled in a new Blue Cross Blue Shield plan through an agent where her premiums were cut in half at $571, but she pays higher out of pocket costs. She’s still seeing her U-M oncologist.

          From The Detroit News:


          AFP is being purposefully misleading using Boostra's story, and doesn't think that their ad should be subject to this kind of scrutiny, attempting to shame Kessler and any other fact checkers with this: "The reality of what she's dealing with is much more involved and can't be swept aside by saying, 'you have an OOP maximum so quit complaining about your cancer.'" No one is sweeping aside her illness, or telling her to stop complaining about her cancer. They're pointing out that she's saving enough in premiums to cover her out of pocket costs. She can complain all she wants, but it's not callous and it's not out of bounds to say that she's not telling the entire truth.

          1. Maybe they have concluded that their message gets out and yours does not.  Maybe they have concluded that if the conversation is about Obamacare and sick people being treated poorly, they are winning. Maybe they know exactly what they are doing and it seems to be working.  

            Nobody that they are trying to reach is reading the daily kos.

          2. AFP pushback against Obamacare works on widely-viewed networks, such as Fox. Political blogs and print news, not as much – they just echo and reinforce for the already-convinced base.

            But I was out talking to real people in town yesterday, canvassing for the Affordable Care Act. I could tell who were the Fox watchers, because they were surprised that they could obtain affordable health insurance. I shared my own story about being a low-income person who is able to be insured again at a reasonable rate.

            And guess what? A real, live, concerned person with a real story, handing out  flyers with real, close-by agencies in town that will help people to "get covered" trumps out any misinformation from Fox.  At least 20% of the people I talked with yesterday will sign up for ACA.

            Real live approachable person with verifiable facts beats scary, distorted internet memes. Again


  2. A Cowardly troll says it is sick about whinning (sic) re: Obamacare.  If it weren't such a chickenshit lying turd it might be funny, but such self-loathing POSs often lack any self-aweness as well, which is why they make useful tools to those that send them and will quickly toss then under the bus once their limited utility dries up.

    1. Apparently turd thinks this is all they've got to stop Udall. Unfortunately, they don't even have this because they can't resist lying and every revelation they put out turns out to be all or mainly fabrication. Regardless, even if they can find one that sticks without any misinformation included, Udall will remain turd's Senator. Boo hoo for turd.

      1. To me trying to connect someone with a sad death, repeatedly, then using a family's troubles and a Senator's kid as fodder to score political points went beyond the pale.  Its shitting all over my diary is not that big of a deal, although for once I would like it to produce something other than easily debunked cartoon, false charts, and bull shit.  But I also realize that probably is too high a bar–both because Global Warming is real and happening and all scientific evidence points to that fact (even as some shows places around the edges where more information and data and fine-tuning is needed, as is the way that science works) and because turd is obviously none-too-bright (to be kind).  Still, it better hope I or someone else does not learn its identity and hang it around the neck of whomever it is trolling for.  Myself, I would appreciate such a moment for my exit from this blog.  

  3. Discussion of the annual cap is somewhat academic, as most of those avoiding the ACA signup are young invincibles who are only partially subsidized or not at all … it's basically premium free otherwise for those who are low wage or unemployed. 







    1. Actually Hawkeye about 5 million people with Insurance were cancelled.

      And the total amount of people who will become Insured through the exchanges is about 5 million people.

      The young were not signing up before and with increased costs they are not signing up now.

      You can say what you want about the American education system.  But young people can do basic math.

  4. I didn't know Paul Krugman was a Republican.

     I thought he was a left-wing Economist at Princeton who has consistently been wrong in his predictions and frequenctly writes on the Huffington Ghost.  

    I must have missed the announcement.

  5. Gee, more BS from our resident feces smearing troll.

    Paul KrugmanMaureen Dowd (known for her mistakes), and Ed Rendell scored the best. Lindsey GrahamCarl Levin, and syndicated columnist Cal Thomas made the most mistakes.

    Pundits predict no more accurately than a coin toss

    Krugman tops, Cal Thomas bottom of accurate predictors, according to study at Hamilton College



         Real-World Economics Review is an economics journal that in 2010 polled their readers and asked them to vote for "the three economists who first and most clearly anticipated and gave public warning of the Global Financial Collapse and whose work is most likely to prevent another GFC in the future." Revere Award for Economics winners and details are here and documentation of the predictions by the finalists are included in Foresight and Fait Accompli: Two Timelines for the Global Financial Collapse. The Revere finalists in voting order below included four not previously identified (in italics below) by Bezemer.

    1. Steve Keen
    2. Nouriel Roubini
    3. Dean Baker
    4. Joseph Stiglitz
    5. Ann Pettifor
    6. Robert Shiller
    7. Paul Krugman
    8. Michael Hudson
    9. Wynne Godley
    10. George Soros
    11. Kurt Richebächer
    12. Jakob Brøchner Madsen


    Now I know it is the mark of A Coward to dodge and duck and perhaps just change the topic.  So I will not hold out any hope of an actual discussion with facts, when there is still some shit to spread on the part of it, the troll.  But I post this information so folks can see some actual sources and facts.  


    1. I predict that a cowardly right-wing troll will read the article that says:

      The top prognosticators – led by New York Times columnist Paul Krugman – scored above five points and were labeled “Good,”

      Even when the students eliminated political predictions and looked only at predictions for the economy and social issues, they found that liberals still do better than conservatives at prediction. After Krugman, the most accurate pundits were Maureen Dowd of The New York Times, former Pennsylvania Governor Ed Rendell, U.S. Senator Chuck Schumer (D-NY), and former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi – all Democrats and/or liberals.

      And will build a lie from the article claiming that Krugman's predictions are no better than a coin toss.

    1. And let's all remember the troll isn't even slightly interested in what's true and what isn't. Lies and fabricated stories are fine with the troll. Once something is debunked, troll just moves on and either never mentions or it or says debunking the story was mean. For example a person dies and troll says ACA killed the person. The facts show that even if the person really existed and really died, it is completely inaccurate to blame it on ACA. Troll says we're mean because the person died. That's a troll's idea of a snappy response.

      You can never get a troll admit to being wrong on the facts. To trolls there are no facts, just talking points to support whatever they claim to believe. Trolls never get frustrated because none of this matters to them except as a partisan tool. They don't care passionately about any of it. They don't care whether climate change is real or not, whether gays can marry or not, whether people have access to healthcare or not, whether women have access to safe family planning or not, even whether women have abortions or not.  It's all just "strategery" to them. So they're heads are never going to explode.

      Don't let them make you crazy because you do care. They know you care and they want your head to explode.

      1. Spot on analysis, BC!  The troll is a partisan quack pushing absolute nonsense for personal gain.

        The miserable POS wants company. I don't even bother reading those worthless posts.

        Thanks for spelling it out so eloquently!

        1. I regret letting it bother me at all, let alone getting me to lose my cool.  I do think in some cases it serves people well to know how low a campaign might go to serve its end, and if it is connected to a campaign or organization such information might be useful as voters consider who is worthy of support.  So should that info come up, people can contact me via twitter.

          When we take ourselves too seriously no one else should.  I have done that.  I like writing diaries, and back when there were FP Editors and the like I enjoyed that, and this community.  Thanks.  But I let a sad self-loathing hack get under my skin, and that means I need to take a break.  I'm sure I'll pop up again from time to time.  For now I need to put my time and energy elsewhere.

          Addiction is a serious and deadly issue.  Anyone that would make light of that just in hopes of scoring a partisan point or winning an election is the lowest of the low.  That such a one would then lie about intent is indication of a serious mental defect.  It’s not a game I wish to play any longer.

          Thanks Guvs for front paging my diary, today and over the years.  Catch everyone sometime down the road.   

  6. Personally, I like Roubini (the world is coming to an end) and Shiller ( the value of your house is falling) but I will need to look into Keen.

    Krugman is a putz and his predictions are, as you noted "no more accurate than a coin toss".

    Do you agree that and Pols has it wrong, or is it Forbes.

    Personally, I felt sorry for Pols in its reliance on the website.  I thought they honestly believed it to be true.

  7. Hick warns other to wait until the downside is fully understood:

    "When governors have asked me, and several have, I say that we don't have the facts. We don't know what the unintended consequences are going to be," Hickenlooper said. "I urge caution."

    The Democrat continued: "I say, if it was me, I'd wait a couple of years."

    A well considered warning when we don't know how dangerous fracking can be for everyone's health. Oops, sorry. The above warning is about legal marijuana. On the topic of fracking the gov is still full speed ahead and let's not study its impact.

    Because we all know getting stoned and an attack of the munchies is much more dangerous than drinking water that catches on fire.

  8. 100 Years of Dr. Seuss!!  "March 2 marks the birthday centennial of Theodore Geisel, the beloved children's author better known as Dr. Seuss."

    What a milestone reported in today's Denver Post huge article on the Arts and Culture section!  But, wait.  Didn't we have a similar celebration 10 years ago? Sure enough, reading the Corrections section buried on Page 2 of the A Section we learn, "Because of a reporter's error, an article…incorrectly states that 2014 is the centennial birth of …Dr. Seuss.  Geisel was born in 1904, which makes this the 110th anniversary.  The mistake was not caught during the editing process, and the story was published in the preprinted section…."

    Kind of a bad week for the Colorado paper of record.  First, the incorrect "Special to the Denver Post" story about Obamacare.  Now, this.  The Obamacare story has the potential for serious harm.  People might not sign up for healthcare because they believe it's not affordable.  I think they published that story in a deliberate attempt to undermine the ACA.  The Dr. Seuss article just reveals the once proud Denver Post. as shell of its former self, trying to operate without experienced journalists or editors.  Maybe they should just hang it up.

    1. Don't worry too much about the effect of what's in the Post what with the pathetic number of people who read newspapers, print or online, these days. Yeah it's too bad they keep putting scary lies out there but not quite as bad as if more people were paying attention. Great that there is push back for people who actually are interested in checking out the facts here and elsewhere. Now if that special to the Post had been embedded in a song on The Voice or American Idol, that would be huge.

  9. Another warning from George Takei to Governor Jan Brewer of AZ:

    Sign that bill, and your state will be boycotted.  "Your state doesn't deserve our dollars".

    Bets, anyone? I don't think she'll sign it. Brewer's going with a Medicare expansion in Arizona shows that she actually cares for her constitutent's welfare, more than complying with the lastest  Tea Party  talking points. And maybe she's seeing the writing on the wall- the decline of the Tea Party and the Republican party in general, as long as they adhere to extreme and counterproductive policies.

    1. Hawaii has a law like this for anything wedding related (it was part of the gay marriage bill put in to get enough votes). For example a wedding photographer can refuse to work a gay wedding.

      I'm betting within a year almost no business lists that they won't work gay weddings when they learn the hard way that a lot of straight people don't want to do business with bigots. If Arizona passes this, I think you'll see some signs go up, and then come down quickly after.

  10. I urge all Jewish Americans to boycott Arizona if this gets signed and to avoid it even if it doesn't because passage by both houses indicates so much bigotry. The recent stories about delayed medals of honor to minorities, including Jews, shows how recently in historic terms we were another minority not quite white enough to be fully acceptable in the company of self described gentlemen.

    I'm a 1952 model and can remember places that banned Jews when I was a kid. It is not impossible that this legislation could allow businesses to refuse service to those who don't accept Jesus as their savior. It doesn't matter how unlikely. It's the principle of the thing and all minorities, racial, ethnic, religious or by virtue of sexual orientation should stick together on this. Together all of the minorities are very close to making up a collective majority. We have the power to thoroughly screw Arizona and we are fools if we don't use it.

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