American Elephants

Dino Rossi Can Win, But He Could Use Your Help. by The Elephant's Child

Republican Dino Rossi appeared on the Kudlow Report recently. Rossi is an outstanding candidate for the United States Senate, running against Patty Murray who first ran in “the year of the woman” whatever that was — as “a mom in tennis shoes.” Perhaps the first and only time that tennis shoes have been considered a qualification for anything except a tennis game.   But there you are.  She has excelled at being an ineffective senator, and good at useless earmarks.  Long a reliable party-line vote (96.5 percent), she voted for ObamaCare and the failed stimulus.  She’s usually a little unclear on the details but can echo the party line fairly well.  After 18 years in the Senate, they finally let her chair a minor subcommittee, but describe her as being part of the “leadership.”

Washington State needs some serious representation, someone who has some familiarity with the free market and American business, and who understands how jobs are created.  You can help him defeat Patty Murray here.

ObamaCare Fails Ethics, Compassion and Common Sense. by The Elephant's Child

ObamaCare, enacted to wild celebration by Democrats who never read the bill, will have a devastating impact on elderly and disabled Medicare enrollees if its provisions are not substantially changed.  The law creates a new mechanism to reduce the rate of increase in Medicare payments to doctors and hospitals. Medicare payments will drop below Medicaid rates before the end of this decade, and they will increasingly fall behind the rates paid by all other insurance in succeeding decades.

In considering the rising cost of healthcare, Obama’s advisers all focused on the cost of the elderly in the last years of their lives.  Peter Orzag, Dr. Donald Berwick, Tom Daschle were all admirers of Britain’s National Health Service.  It is shocking, but life is not sustainable.  Most people die after 80 years or so.  ObamaCare is designed to give healthy people all sorts of “preventive” care that won’t do anything for their health, and to cut the costs of caring for the old, frail and sick.

Medicare currently pays about 20% below what private insurance pays.  Hospitals lose money on Medicare patients, and under the “Affordable Care Act”  payments get continually worse.  It will be increasingly harder for Medicare patients to find a doctor.

ObamaCare creates a huge rationing problem. There will supposedly be as many as 34 million newly insured people, but all funds to create new health care providers were dropped from the bill.  The administration has promised new funds, but nowhere near enough to meet the increased demand.  We already have a shortage of physicians, created by more interference of bureaucrats into the free market.

According to health care experts John Goodman and Thomas Saving, the average senior on Medicare will receive $2,300 less in benefits within 10 years and $3,844 less in 20 years.  Congress has blocked these kinds of cuts for seven straight years with what they’ve come to call the “doc fix.” The new law gives an independent commission the power to make cuts without Congressional approval.  Congress can override the commission only if it substitutes its own proposal, cutting spending just as much.  Even then the president is free to side with the commission and veto Congress’ proposal. Under current law, it is generally illegal for Medicare patients to pay extra out of their own pockets to cover expenses.

The NHS attaches a value to the life years a person has left and decides whether you’re worth treatment or not. Surely extensive measures to extend the life of a patient dying of old age are unwise and the reason that most older people formally express their wishes not to be put on feeding tubes if there is little hope. This is not the apparent thinking of the Obama administration.  The intent of the law they passed is to shift funding from the frail or elderly to healthy people who have more to contribute to society, according to their ideology.

The assumption seems to be that healthy people need lots of health care.  We probably all know people who have good insurance who run to the doctor every time they get a cold.  Health insurance has created a huge change in society.  Magazines and newspapers are full of stories advising you on how to be healthy, drug companies advertise their medications, and we now have stores that sell nothing but supplements.  There is a supplement for everything. And in case you don’t trust your doctor, all sorts of “alternative” medicine.

I suspect we have created a nation of hypochondriacs. The search for the perfect food or combination of foods is endless.  Most of the vitamins, supplements, herbs and potions are determined by health care providers to be worthless, yet people believe.  Americans spend around $15 billion on non-vitamin, non-mineral “natural” products.  They spend around $33.9 billion for “complementary and alternative medicine.”

Goodman and Saving offer a potential correction.  The free market almost always has solutions.  Read the whole piece, if you plan on getting old.

And About Those “Foreign”Campaign Contributions… by The Elephant's Child

President Obama, when he isn’t using his worn out ‘driving–into–the–ditch’ story, is telling his fellow Democrats that the problem isn’t with the administration, it’s with irrationally enraged Americans. Americans are enraged, confused or fearful.  And Republicans are getting “foreign money” for their campaigns!!!

You know all the claims about campaign contributions from, say, BIG OIL?  Say $50,000 to Congressman Joe Unethical?  That means that a number of individuals who work for oil related companies have donated up to $2,400 (the limit for an individual to donate to any one candidate).  A large company may have a political action committee (PAC) to which many individuals contribute, or since individuals must list on their donation where they are employed, the totals are grouped together by industry.  Corporations cannot donate.

The Democrats have been claiming that “the Chamber of Commerce is giving foreign money” to Republican candidates. That means that Americans who work for subsidiaries of American companies overseas have donated to the campaigns of their preferred candidates.  They are legally entitled to vote too, even if they work abroad.  Even Americans who work for (gasp!) foreign companies are entitled to contribute and vote.

Democrats are trying to make a big deal out of $510,000 from PACs funded by contributions from U.S. employees of subsidiaries of foreign companies to House and Senate GOP leaders.  Ooops.  The Hill looked into this and Democrat leaders in the House and Senate have seen their party raise more than $1 million from PACs affiliated with foreign companies.  So much for that claim.

Democrats have a real problem.  They can’t brag about passing health care. Americans hate it.  70 percent of Americans don’t think that the government spends our money wisely and fairly.  Only 14 percent think the government has too little power and money, and 61 percent think it has too much.  The Stimulus was a flop. Obama has admitted that there weren’t any “shovel-ready” projects.  The Deepwater Horizon oil spill was a disastrous display of administration lack of leadership and massive administration–caused unemployment. Pelosi and Reid rammed through a lot of legislation that Republicans tried to warn  them would not work.  The warnings are coming true even before the laws fully go into effect.

On Saturday the president was again complaining that the Republicans didn’t cooperate.  Bipartisanship in his mind means the Republicans should agree with his policies, even though they have evidence that the policy won’t work, which he ignores.

“When I was sworn in with a lot of high spirits, they had two ways to go.”  Obama said,”They could have cooperated with us, in which case everybody would have ownership in solving problems but if we were successful than people would still — would probably give the Democrat’s majority more credit.  And if we weren’t successful, they’d share the blame.”

“So what they instead said was, we’ll just let them try it out, and we’re not going to lift a finger to help, and because they figured we had made such a mess it’s going to take them a really long time to clean it up.”

This is one of the most accurate things Obama has said.  They have made “such a mess” it will take us a really long time to clean it up. His comment illustrates a fixed mindset.  He has rammed through important things and the Republicans didn’t cooperate, and he really doesn’t understand why not,  for he is operating on the basis of conviction.  An inexperienced ideologue, too besotted with his own brilliance to listen to advice, is unfamiliar with history, science, economics, statecraft and the free market, yet ready to “fundamentally transform America.” Americans don’t want America fundamentally transformed.




Barney Sics Boyfriend on Bielat by American Elephant

Barney Frank, that most dishonest Democrat, may, the good Lord willing, lose his job this November. His district voted for Scott Brown in that special election, and it’s looking increasingly likely that they will give Barney the boot as well.

Barney’s challenger is the supremely qualified, and far more honorable Sean Bielat. Sean is a Major in the US Marine Corps Reserves, a successful businessman, and a Harvard graduate, just to scratch the surface. Because Barney Frank is one of the supreme architects of the financial meltdown, having lead Democrats in blocking Republicans’ attempts to reform Fannie and Freddie, I watched the Bielat/Frank debates with great interest, and my primary observation was that while Sean was calm, cool and collected, striking blow after blow, Barney Frank was a nervous wreck, fidgeting, constantly interrupting, and desperately looking at the moderator as if pleading for mercy from the devastating onslaught of Sean Bielat’s barrage of unbeatable facts.

So now Barney is scared. How scared? This scared:

Upon exiting the most recent debate with Barney Frank, located at WGBH studios in Boston, MA, Republican Congressional candidate, Sean Bielat, gets heckled by a Barney Frank “supporter” while talking to the media. While watching this video, we realized that we recognized this “supporter”. We received confirmation from two eyewitnesses that the mysterious cameraman was none other than Barney Frank’s pot-growing boyfriend, James Ready.

I can’t think of a race that better exemplifies what this election is all about — defeating corrupt, ruling-class socialists and replacing them with principled, honest, good men and women. You can help Bielat defeat one of America’s most loathsome politicians here. Go Sean!

(h/t Doug Powers @ Michelle Malkin)

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