Sunday, March 30, 2014

Bill Davis likes a link.
Sunday, 30 March 2014

I've watched 60 Minutes for years and this is one of the outstanding pieces of late. This is the kind of reporting viewers need to acquire the knowledge of what is going afoul in our society. This highlights how legislation to maintain a level field for all players is lagging technology and how regulations need to establish some kind of change control to be sure that some new bright idea is not going to rob naive players of the money they have entrusted to investment advisers.
If ever government had a purpose, it was to do what individuals cannot do for themselves and protect consumers from sophisticated ways of extracting gains from a system in some underhanded unethical way. All this brainpower put to better use would be to resolve world poverty, not suck wealth out of the market to a secret bank foreign account.

Saturday, March 29, 2014

Some things about voting and elections worth thinking about.

Thanks to Bill Cash for these remarks.
I agree with getting partisanship out of our elections and getting independents fully into the process. However, I do realize there is a difference between the parties. Both are corrupt but the republican party is far worse. They are waging a war on our democracy. Through the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) they are driving bills through state legislatures to guarantee their success. In Republican controlled states they are severely gerrymandering districts so that it is almost impossible for anyone else to have more districts than them. That is the first step. The second step is to change how the state allocates its electoral votes. They've already voted in some republican controlled states to allocate the votes by district rather than popular vote. The courts did not allow these changes for the 2012 elections but the courts are not a sure way to stop it. It only applied to that one election.
In Virginia, they've already passed these laws and if they had been in effect in 2012, even though Obama won the popular vote by 4%, he would have only garnered 4 electoral votes and Romney would have received 9. These bills are being passed in all the republican controlled states.
The republicans are in a rush to change these laws because they know demographics will overtake them eventually. With these changes, they don't have to worry about it. Their one problem is the statewide offices which are still governed by popular vote. Statewide, Virginia just went democratic but the republicans are firmly in control of the legislature because of the gerrymandering.
I am working with Common Cause for the National Popular Vote which would undermine these stunts in the presidential elections but, from having been at legislative sessions, I can tell you the republicans fiercely oppose it. ALEC is sending representatives out to speak against it in many states. They sent a woman from Texas to testify in Connecticut.
A few positive things happening for voter registration come from Obamacare and the National Voter Registration Act of 1993.
Under the terms of an agreement announced between California and an alliance of good government groups, the state will mail voter registration forms to 4 million people who applied for Obamacare via California’s online exchange. The deal could end up creating 400,000 new registered Golden State voters—the actual numbers will be available later this year.
Nationwide, Obamacare could ultimately be responsible for registering anywhere from 3 to 7 million voters—potentially over 10% of the total number of eligible voters who aren’t registered today—over the next eight years.
Under the 1993 National Voter Registration Act (NVRA), which aimed to boost voter registration, people applying for public assistance—as well as DMV customers—must be offered the chance to register to vote. That means every state insurance exchange like California’s, as well as the federal exchange, will need to ask people whether they want to register. Even those people who end up getting covered via Obamacare’s Medicaid expansion or through other parts of the law, rather than through the private market, will still be offered the chance to register to vote.
After congressional Republicans raised concerns about the ACA being used for voter registration, the Obama administration soft-pedaled the requirement on the federal exchange by merely including a one-sentence link to an all-purpose federal government website. Project Vote and Demos have said that approach isn’t enough to comply with the NVRA, and are urging the administration to make it more prominent. Many state exchanges also still aren’t complying with the law, the groups say. So once again the republicans are able to make Obama back down.
Throwing support behind these registration efforts could be very fruitful.
In some states the republicans are also driving fear into people trying to register voters. They are passing restrictive laws that if a registration form isn't completely completed or if it isn't processed within a certain number of days (a short time frame like 48 hours) the registrar can be subject to a heavy fine or even imprisonment in some cases.

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Resolution in Support of Single-Payer National Health Insurance

Please sign the petition for the following Resolution

WHEREAS, 48 million Americans lacked health insurance in 2012, and an estimated 31 million Americans will remain uninsured in 2023, and

WHEREAS, the United States ranks last out of 19 high-income countries in preventing deaths amenable to medical care before age 75, and

WHEREAS, underinsurance is growing as many patients are forced into insurance plans with high-deductibles (> $1,000) and narrow networks of providers, and

WHEREAS, the United States spends twice as much per capita on health care as the average of wealthy nations that provide universal coverage, and

WHEREAS, medical bills contribute to 62% of all personal bankruptcies, and medical bankruptcy did not fall in Massachusetts after that state’s implementation of reform in 2006, and

WHEREAS, 75% of people bankrupted by medical bills had private insurance at the onset of illness or injury, and

WHEREAS, private insurance companies consume 13% of premiums in overhead compared to fee-for-service Medicare’s overhead of under 2%, and

WHEREAS, providers are forced to spend tens of billions more dealing with insurers billing and documentation requirements, bringing total administrative costs to 31% of U.S. health spending, compared to 16.7% in Canada, and

WHEREAS, the U.S. could save over $380 billion annually on administrative costs with a single-payer system, and

WHEREAS, the savings from slashing bureaucracy would be enough to cover all of the uninsured and eliminate cost sharing for everyone else, and

WHEREAS, a single-payer system could control costs through proven-effective mechanisms such as global budgets for hospitals and negotiated drug prices, thereby making health care financing sustainable, and

WHEREAS, a single-payer reform would reduce malpractice lawsuits and insurance costs because injured patients won’t have to sue for coverage of future medical expenses, and

WHEREAS, a single-payer system would facilitate health planning, directing capital funds to build and expand health facilities where they are needed, rather than being driven by the dictates of the market, and

WHEREAS, a single-payer reform would dramatically reduce, although not eliminate, health disparities. The passage of Medicare in 1965 led to the rapid desegregation of 99.6% of U.S. hospitals, and

WHEREAS, a single-payer system would allow patients to freely choose their doctors, give physicians a choice of practice setting, and protect the doctor-patient relationship, and

WHEREAS, there is single-payer legislation in both houses of Congress, H.R. 676 and S. 1782, and

WHEREAS, Vermont passed legislation in 2011 to create a “pathway to single payer” in that state starting in 2017, the soonest allowed under federal law, and many other state legislatures are considering similar legislation, therefore

BE IT RESOLVED that we, the undersigned, support universal access to comprehensive, affordable, high-quality health care through single-payer national health insurance, including single-payer legislation at the state level and urge you to cosponsor and pass the bills mentioned above.

Please sign the petition for the Resolution

For more information and local contacts or to offer support, see

Derived from and References at


We have a crisis in employment because employers are overburdened by healthcare costs.  Healthy people work. If we can bring the costs down as other countries have done, we will be more competitve in the global markets.

Signing this resolution should help get the attention of more representatives in Congress despite the money many take from the medical industry.

If you disagree, please do more research. Contact a local advocate for more information.  We've had enough suffering.  Our medical system is not the world's best by many standards, but it CAN be.  YOU need to speak up to be heard.

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Cost of having a baby in the U.S.

emailed to
Copy and edit to send what you think.

Cost of having a baby in the U.S.

I just watched your (NBC Nightly News) story on family medical expenses.  You should ask yourselves if you want the people who don't worry about the cost of a child because they are on Medicaid producing the bulk of the next generation rather than the more calculating prospective parents who don't want to go broke having a family.
This is just one damning illustration of the failure of our political system being ignored by voters and overrun by corporate and 1% money to provide U.S. residents with the care they deserve in a nation that can easily afford it.
 Maybe you could start the public discussion so sorely lacking on what it would be like in this country if we fought the influence of the medical industry and followed the lead of other industrialized nations, notably Canada and implemented universal, comprehensive, publicly funded, fiscally conservative, privately delivered care. (Improved Medicare for All, H.R. 676)
I recommend you have a national town hall discussion following the airing of one or a series of movies such as Sicko, The Healthcare Movie, Escape Fire or the like.
You have media power to clean up the healthcare train-wreck, and I am not referring to Obamacare.  That was a step in the right direction, just way short of where we should be and loaded with unintended consequences..
You could present programming to counter the lies and propaganda so rampant for decades in our society.
What is the point of a free press if you are in collusion with those you should expose as bad actors averse to the public good?

Monday, March 3, 2014

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Working for healthcare justice contributes to economic justice.

I’m almost finished reading “The Working Poor, Invisible in America” by David K. Shipler. I recommend it.  From the book: “the unbroken cycle:  Poverty leads to health and housing problems.  Poor health and housing lead to cognitive deficiencies and school problems.  Educational failure leads to poverty.”
Early in the first chapter, Shipler reveals there are seven interlocking pieces that work into the equation for living,  A job, medical insurance, good housing, reliable transportation, effective family budgeting, effective parenting and effective schooling are all necessary to be successful in moving away from the edge of poverty.  Attacking any one of these will not help.  However, we can eliminate one of them.  Medical care could be removed from this list if we decided that it was important enough to reduce poverty.  Disconnected from employment, Improved Medicare for All would allow people to receive care regardless of employment.  People would pay based on income.  When they are working, they will contribute.  There would be more jobs caring for people who go without today.  There would be no more medical bankruptcies, no more excluding employee candidates from being hired with concerns of how their health conditions would affect group insurance costs.

Working for healthcare justice contributes to economic justice.  
Visit, and for more information.  These sites have links to organizations with contacts in your area.
I tried submitting this through the website. It must be broken.  I get no response that message was either sent or received.  The website finally gave me an acknowledgment of my send.
Do you want the truth about H.R. 676 and the obstructions erected by the medical, insurance and Pharma industries? Do some cutting, pasting and sending of your own.

I'm watching your piece on psych bed shortage.  When are you going to tell your viewers how the powers that be have lied to them about healthcare reform? The Public option was squashed, H.R. 676 was not on the table.  Obamacare was a conservative idea of the Heritage Foundation, yet the Republicans, who got what they wanted are STILL obstructing and lying about the ACA. 
What your viewers want is the truth so they can make a valid decision.  You need to help dispel their fears about the need for change to Improved Medicare for All.  You need to invite some spokespeople from Physicians for a National Health Program ( to talk about this.  Wendell Potter is another choice to speak on how the insurance companies operate. Gerald Friedman a U. of Mass. Economist could speak on the economics of universal, comprehensive healthcare.  Real reform would kick start our economy.  Healthy workers are reliable, happy workers.

I used think more of 60 Minutes than I do now.  When are you going to get back to more real investigative journalism and less fluff? If it’s not the job of the media to inform Americans of the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth, who will? Do you really want to lose any intelligent viewers you still have to internet bloggers for their news?

The TrueMajority OREO video... featuring an animated Ben Cohen.