Today FreedomWorks released an apology to leftist political organizations including MoveOn.org, the Democratic National Committee, the AFL-CIO and ACORN for our apparent ignorance of the fine art of political discourse.
FreedomWorks’ August Recess Call to Action encouraged grassroots citizens to attend Congressional town hall meetings and listening sessions. We asked everyone to voice their opinions and communicate their opposition to the President’s proposed hostile takeover of the American health care system. Apparently, the very act of showing up and having an opinion is, in effect, to act like a “thug.” Opposing President Obama’s policy agenda on health care is, in and of itself, unacceptable, and has no place in our democracy. Bottom line: it’s “disgusting,” according to our friends on the left.
Anyone feeling better?
Of course I would be remiss if I were to ignore the fact that we Lefties have an Apology to the Right as well...
Over the past week, we have seen your passionate protests and heard your concerns about Democratic proposals for health care reform. We have considered your insightful and well reasoned arguments, and on behalf of progressives everywhere, I am here to say: OK! We give up! We are willing to compromise on the proposals that concern you. You've won! Yay!
In accordance with your cogent and potent criticisms, these are the terms of our concession:
1. We will not euthanize your grandmother. This is the big one, and I really hope you guys appreciate how much of a concession this is on behalf of the progressive movement. Since the days of the Bull Moose Party, progressives have wanted nothing more than to slaughter old people by the millions. That much is obvious. After all, if we wanted senior citizens to have long and healthy lives, why would we have created Social Security and Medicare? Think about it. Death to grannies has long been the core of progressive policy, so it's not without some consternation that we give it up. So there: no euthanizing old people. You've got it.
2. Rahm Emanuel's brother will not kill Sarah Palin's baby. While this will require us to gut HR 3200 "America's Health Choices and Murder Sarah Palin's Baby Act of 2009," we're currently working with Henry Waxman to remove the extensive Sarah Palin's baby-killing provisions from the final bill. While this will probably cost us Andrew Sullivan's support, we recognize that this is a necessary sacrifice for securing broad bipartisan support of health care reform.
Ok, now that that's out of the way, let just see what it was that has brought the Left to such as sad state...
On the section of the Freedomworks site titled "Take Action to Stop Socialized Medicine" they present three questions to ask your representatives:
1. Do you support any of these middle-class tax hikes to fund government-run health care? If not, how would you pay for it?
Currently the United States spends 15.3% of our national GDP on Health care costs. That is 5% higher than ANY - I REPEAT ANY - other country in the world. The bulk of that cost is not coming from Medicare or Medicaid or other public programs (which accounts for 6.9% of GDP) it's coming from Private Insurance Costs which top out at a whopping 8.5%. The only other country even close to that at 8.4% is Lebanon.
How would we pay for adding new people to the system? By cutting all the price gouging and insurance scams that makes our private health care costs well over twice (and sometimes three times) as expensive as just about every other country in the world, that's how.
2. Under Obama’s plan, can you guarantee that I would get to keep my current health care plan and doctor?
Yes, that is included in SEC. 102. "PROTECTING THE CHOICE TO KEEP CURRENT COVERAGE" of HR 3200.
Dean vs Gingrich on being "Forced out your plan"
DEAN: Look, let’s be fair. Lewin Associates is owned by a health insurance company. So let’s — let’s — let’s — the CBO, which I think is a more reasonable organization, says 5 million or 10 million people are going to end up there. [...]
Second of all, what the speaker didn’t tell you is, let’s just suppose you get forced out of your employer-based system, which I think is unlikely, but let’s suppose that you do. You’ve got a choice. The government will pay your subsidy to either go into — based on your income, either to go into the public option or a private option. Nobody is forcing you in to the public option.
On Gingrich's point claiming that Employers will drop Private Coverage because a Public Plan would be so much cheaper - well, isn't that the result of the Free Market Deciding? Besides, hasn't Walmart been doing that for years?
3. Provisions in the Obama plan call for “comparative effectiveness research” to be used to decrease costs. “Savings” are achieved by denying treatments based on criteria such as cost, a patient’s health and/or a patient’s age. Isn’t this health care rationing?
First of all denying treatment via "Pre-existing Conditions" and rejection of claims is how insurance companies are padding their profits RIGHT NOW. Our care is already rationed away from those who need most - y'know Sick People.
HR 3200 Specifically Prohibits the use of "Pre-existing Conditions" to block access to care.
SEC. 111. PROHIBITING PRE-EXISTING CONDITION EXCLUSIONS.
A qualified health benefits plan may not impose any pre-existing condition exclusion (as defined in section 2701(b)(1)(A) of the Public Health Service Act) or otherwise impose any limit or condition on the coverage under the plan with respect to an individual or dependent based on any health status-related factors (as defined in section 2791(d)(9) of the Public Health Service Act) in relation to the individual or dependent.
This is what the bill says On Comparative Effectiveness Research.
`Sec. 1181. (a) Center for Comparative Effectiveness Research Established-`
(1) IN GENERAL- The Secretary shall establish within the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality a Center for Comparative Effectiveness Research (in this section referred to as the `Center') to conduct, support, and synthesize research (including research conducted or supported under section 1013 of the Medicare Prescription Drug, Improvement, and Modernization Act of 2003) with respect to the outcomes, effectiveness, and appropriateness of health care services and procedures in order to identify the manner in which diseases, disorders, and other health conditions can most effectively and appropriately be prevented, diagnosed, treated, and managed clinically.
The Center will submit reports to the Secretary and to Congress for evaluation - that's ALL. They don't make the decision, they just issue a study - like the CBO does. Further there's also an independant Oversight Commission made up of physicians and experts in bioethics, patients, employers and insurance companies authorized in the bill to double check their suggestions.
But the bottom line is that don't make the final decision - Congress and the Secretary do, which frankly is what they already do for Medicaid and Medicare. Now they'll just have some outside non-governmental experts specifically charged with providing some better ideas.
`(h) Construction- Nothing in this section shall be construed to permit the Commission or the Center to mandate coverage, reimbursement, or other policies for any public or private payer.'.
All of this is simply to ensure that providers are using best practices and the latest technology in order to provide care at least equivelent to that currently provided by Medicare - not deny it.
But here's the thing, the real purpose of Freedomworks here isn't to apologize for their own bad behavior it's to turn around and accuse the left of being the REAL Thugs with harassing phone calls.
Specifically, “school” included phone call blitzes from MoveOn.org and the AFL-CIO that jammed FreedomWorks phone lines and filled up staff voice mail boxes. Callers’ consistently used profanity, vulgarity, ever-popular references to “Nazis” and “brown-shirters,” racial slurs targeting an African-American staffer, and even veiled threats of violence and bodily harm.
Oh, so we're the Meanies here? And exactly where is the evidence that this was sponsored by ACORN, the AFL-CIO or Move-On? I looked at their site and i don't see anything that says "Call Up FreedomWorks and act like a Jack-Ass - here's their number!"
Really I don't.
But I do see that the SEIU is receiving threaten calls demanding they "Stop the Violence" or else they'll "Come up against the Second Amendment!"
I do see FreedomWorks providing (error ridden) scripts and maps to these Tall Halls, and I see their Vice President boasting about "blowing them up" and claiming on C-Span that he just can't tell people to "calm down"?
PAPPAS: We don’t have the power to control how many people turn out or how they behave there. All we really do is facilitate their participation by letting people know when these town halls are and giving them information about the issues that are going to be discussed The passions are so deep about this issue that we can’t send out an email that says “calm down.”
Yeah, actually - you could, pal.
Seriously, these guys are like a bunch of 12-year-olds who take a Cherry Bomb, light It, stuff it in your mail-box, run away - then when the shit Blows UP claim they had nothing to do with it.
"The Fire Made It go BOOM, I couldn't have been bothered to try and put it out after I started it and aimed it! It's not my fault that Gunpowder Plumps when you cook it."
Apology Not Accepted.