Democrats & Liberals Archives

Everybody Looks Bad. Congratulations.

You know, the simple fact is, however much Republicans have been able to tear down Democrats, especially President Obama, they haven’t benefited too much from it. They’ve simply managed to drag the country’s politics down into the mud, and we’re all paying a price for that.

10%. Getting a rating like that is like begging to get your ass kicked out of office, but somehow Republicans have managed it. Yes, sometimes its daring to do just what has to be done and accept the political damage for it, but this is ridiculous.

Oh, but trying getting the GOP to admit that. They constantly tear down the leaders of the opposition, bashing Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid all the time, but for that, have they gotten stronger leaders, better statesmen? Not at all. Boehner's a joke who can't even guarantee to the President, in a negotiation, that his own party has his back. Mitch McConnell? His brute force political tactics have stalled his own party just as well as the Democrats, leaving Democrats very wary of making further deals. Who wants to, when all the other guy wants to do is screw you?

Republicans have picked the wrong branch of government to be uncompromising in (though arguably the Executive branch isn't much better). Senators and Representatives have to operate in exhausting long term lockstep to do that, and the fact is, they represent more than just movements and parties, they represent people who might have different ideas of what they want than those political organizations.

The 10% rating, I think, represents the strain between what people want, and what they're getting.

I've always proceeded with the assumption that you take care of function first, and then you get to have recess in the political playground. Unfortunately, just as the last generation has turned junk food from desert to the main course, this generation of Republican and Conservative leaders has taken partisan theater and political wishlists, and made them priority ahead of keeping the basic mechanisms of government running smoothly. It doesn't help that Republicans like to point to dysfunction to improve their political profile, giving them a conflict of interest on improving the efficiency of government.

If the Republicans can't be bothered to do something useful with the authority we've handed them, it's time to put it back in the hands of folks who will actually govern responsibly.

Posted by Stephen Daugherty at September 30, 2013 6:48 PM
Comments
Comment #371803

You know, I wish I had the mentality that would allow me to sit on my couch, watching tv all day, and just want. Want anything I think I can get from the bloated, jabba da’ hut, federal government.

Maybe that’s why we have an obesity problem in this country. People want to emulate their savior, the bloated, fat, out-of-shape, jabba da’ hut, federal government.

Posted by: Weary Willie at September 30, 2013 7:57 PM
Comment #371809

The Republican game is quite clear: throw a monkey wrench into anything related to Obama. Failure of Obama’s policies is paramount.

How can Obama negotiate with a party that has no interest in coming to any agreement. The Republican obstructionism is not without reason. They learned an important lesson from the Clinton era. Credit for compromise and effective policy ultimately accrues to the incumbent president. Guess what, they are not about to make another Clinton out of Obama.


Posted by: Rich at September 30, 2013 10:54 PM
Comment #371812

Some polls of some voters yield dismal 10% ratings for Congress, but it really does not mean much when the majority of voters repeatedly reward Congress with 85%-to-90% re-election rates.

The election rates are more meaningful than polls of Congress persons’ approval ratings

Therefore, the majority of voters must have what they want, since they repeatedly reward Congress with 85-to-90% re-election rates, election after election?

For example:

  • most voters don’t even know who their state and federal senators and representatives are, much less their voting records.

  • 40% to 50% of voters don’t even bother to vote at all.

  • most voters pull the party-lever (i.e. vote straight ticket); many not even knowing who they are voting for … just that they are in THEIR party (abdicating the responsibility to vote wisely to THEIR party).

  • most voters, 90% of the time, elect the candidate that spends the most money.

  • 99.85% of all 200 million eligible voters donate $2 per person (on average) to a federal campaign, while a tiny 0.15% makes 83% of all federal campaign donations (of $200 or more).

  • most voters have no idea what Article V of the Constitution is, or that it is being violated, despite 400+ requests to make amendments by 49 states

  • 20% of students in American public schools can’t identify the United States on a world map.

  • most voters think the problem is the OTHER party.

  • most voters think THEIR politician is grand. Most voters believe MOST politicians are crooked, but they think that THEIR politician is great. Look at the voters that repeatedly re-elect politicians that have commited one or more crimes (and later convicted)

  • most voters bitch and complain and give Congress a low approval rating, but repeatedly re-elect and reward the same incumbents, giving them a cu$hy 90% to 95% re-election rate since 1996.

  • most voters are easily bribed with their own tax dollars; especially the older voters lobbying for entitlements. Too many voters have fallen for the myth that we can all live at the expense of everyone else.

  • most voters don’t know what the National Debt is, much less the total federal debt, Social Security debt, or the nationwide personal debt.

  • most voters fall for the partisan warfare, because it is easier to blame the OTHER party than work to solve prolbems; foolishly emphasizing minor differences rather than working on unity to solve the many things most of us all already agree upon (the problem and the solution).

  • most voters (if not all) can not name 10, 20, 50, 100, or 268 (half of 535) in Congress that are responsible and accountable. But then, perhaps that’s because there aren’t any?

  • most voters blame Congress and the President, but fail to understand that the voters (the largest group of 200 million eligible voters) have the government that they repeatedly re-elect and reward. The voters are the one largest group responsible for their own problems. But, again, it’s easier to blame politicians, rather than take responsibility themselves.

  • too many voters are one-issue voters, making them easy to manipulate.

  • most voters think the nation is on the wrong track, but most voters reward incumbent politicians with re-election for keeping us on the wrong track.

  • most voters simply don’t care … at least, not until the consequences of that disinterest motivates them to become more interested. Perhaps more voters will become much less complacent, apathetic, and lazy when they are jobless, homeless, and hungry.

At any rate, the majority of voters have the government that they elect, and re-elect, … , and re-elect, at least, possibly, until repeatedly rewarding failure and FOR-SALE, incompetent, arrogant, and corrupt incumbent politicians with perpetual re-election finally becomes too painful.

Posted by: d.a.n at September 30, 2013 11:00 PM
Comment #371815

Weary Willie-
I think Conservatives can’t maintain respect for their principles and positions if they can’t run things straight without abusing a function of government for political gain.

Those insults of yours come so easily to you. But look at that ten percent approval rating. There’s no groundswell of support for the sweeping reformers you love, only frustration and shock at the decadence of your congress.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at September 30, 2013 11:48 PM
Comment #371818

Well, the Tea Party has the shutdown they wanted.

Be careful what you wish for, is all I can say. You might make people figure out that they don’t have to be lazy to need the government for something.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at October 1, 2013 12:10 AM
Comment #371822

Stephen

“I think Conservatives can’t maintain respect for their principles and positions if they can’t run things straight without abusing a function of government for political gain.”


OH PLEASE ! This law is the equivalent of Fords Edsel. The majority of Americans want no part of it. It is also the main reason for Dems losing the house in 2010.

The republicans were given the house for this very reason, to do something about this dung pile, aka obamacare. To let the opportunity to stop this law before it can take full effect slip away would be foolish. There is no doubt the dems would do the very same thing, were they in this situation.

To whine about political piety is the epitome of ridiculousness. The reps need to ride this until they can at least get a 1 year delay in the mandate for everyone, not just those who can benefit obama politically. This is no longer a chess game, it’s a bare knucles brawl, and it’s time to bloody some dem noses.

Posted by: dbs at October 1, 2013 5:30 AM
Comment #371828

dbs-
I objected to many of Bush’s laws. Did I advocate for a shutdown of the government to get them? No. Instead, I advocated to get the votes in the Senate and House, and the man in the White House to get me what I wanted. I worked with the system, rather than paddling upstream and cursing the river for flowing in its natural direction.

The Republicans may have been given the House, but they were not given the SENATE! You had no opportunity, not with the same Senate and President who passed it still in office! You folks haven’t attempted a repeal forty times and failed forty times because people kept slipping on banana peels on their way to carrying the bill to the Senate, you’ve failed because we control the Senate, and we don’t agree with you.

And the framers designed the system so that this would mean you would be capable of squat. Only, your people won’t admit this plain fact. Instead, they rage at the fact that we won’t betray our constituents in order to please yours, to whom you promised way too much.

The Republicans, if they’re smart, will quickly settle this, because the longer this goes on, the more apparent it will become the reasons WHY the shutdown is happening, and WHO is to blame.

But they’re not smart. They’re like amateur chess players who keep on aggressively moving their pieces at promising targets, only to lose those pieces to the traps the other people set up.

The only nose you’re going to bloody is your own. You’re not even starting out with the benefit of the doubt, or even a united caucus. Hell, you’re not even starting out with 1995’s control of the Senate.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at October 1, 2013 8:29 AM
Comment #371831
The majority of Americans want no part of it. It is also the main reason for Dems losing the house in 2010.

So the weak recovery had nothing to do with the 2010 election?

The republicans were given the house for this very reason, to do something about this dung pile, aka obamacare. To let the opportunity to stop this law before it can take full effect slip away would be foolish. There is no doubt the dems would do the very same thing, were they in this situation.

7 years ago, Democrats were given the House due to the unpopularity of the Iraq war. They had an opportunity to defund the whole thing and embarrass President Bush, but they chose to defer to the CinC instead. Why can’t Republicans return the favor?

Posted by: Warren Porter at October 1, 2013 9:46 AM
Comment #371832

Republicans and most Americans want repeal of the ACA, Democrats ignore Americans who disagree with them and demand acceptance of what they dictate.
Republicans say ok, how about we delay it for one year, work out the bugs that keep popping up and come up with something that ALL Americans can accept? Democrats ignore Americans who disagree with them and demand acceptance of what they dictate.
Guess all that “compromise” talk the left has been preaching about doesn’t apply to them. No surprise there.

“If the Republicans can’t be bothered to do something useful with the authority we’ve handed them,”

Once again, Stephen, they are doing what we, the people on the right, elected them to do. IF we wanted them to cave in and let you have your way, we would have elected leftists to represent us.
Seriously, what kind of support do you think they would have if they didn’t even try to help us?

“it’s time to put it back in the hands of folks who will actually govern responsibly.”

So ignoring Americans and refusing to compromise is NOW “actually governing responsibly?” I don’t think so.

You know, the worst thing isn’t that government is slowed down a little, it’s that the Republicans won’t be successful in protecting us.

Posted by: kctim at October 1, 2013 10:06 AM
Comment #371835

Wow. Stephen Daugherty’s article blames EVERYTHING on Republicans?

Who would have ever imagined that would happen?

HHMMMmmmmmm … would it not be SHOCKING if one of Stephen Daugherty’s articles EVER appeared non-partisan long enough to finally see that the majority in Congress in BOTH parties are usually equally culpable, as are also the majority of voters who repeatedly reward Congress with 85%-to-90% re-election rates?!?

Unfortunately, it is easier to blame others than ever share in the blame.
What does such obvious bias mean for the credibility of the majority of articles?
What does such obvious bias mean for the possibility of ever understanding the real root problems and arriving at real solutions?
If all Repugnicans suddenly dissappeared, nothing would be better, and many things may possibly get worse?
After all, absolute power corrupts absolutely?

The majority of voters currently do not care about the federal government shutting down (at least, not yet), as long as their Social Security checks, Medicare benefits, welfare, pork-barrel, waste, etc. are still being paid.

In a voting nation, the government is a reflection of the majority of eligible voters who repeatedly reward Congress with 85%-to-90% re-election rates (sometimes more than 90%).

So, why ALWAYS blame only Republicans for EVERYTHING?

IF either party was actually so much worse than the other, why don’t re-election rates reflect a significant difference?
How did the horrible Repugnicans get control of the House, and the horrible Democraps get control of the Senate?
The IN-PARTY, at times, had the majority in the Executive, House, and Senate combined, but never for very long?
Why is that?
Perhaps it is because too much power always leads to too much corruption?
While the balance of power barely tips to one of the two main parties, it is hard for the majority of voters to see much real positive change.

Even if polls later show that most voters blame mostly Democraps or Repugnicans, the majority of voters will still giver Congress dismal 10% approval ratings, and most likely still reward Congress persons with 85%-to-90% re-election rates. The struggle for a shift in the balance of power between the current IN-PARTY and OUT-PARTY will continue, but the severely bloated, corrupt, wasteful, federal government will still not (anytime soon) become significantly less dysfunctional.

Dysfunction will most likely continue to grow ever worse, and the nation will continue the long-term decline until the painful consequences of so many decades of continued government irresponsibility, debt, major abuses, waste, and corruption finally provide the majority of voters enough incentive to question and stop the insane habit of repeatedly rewarding repeat offenders (long-time incumbent politicians) with perpetual re-election.

I personally think the mean old Repugnicans will pretend for a short while to fight for more fiscal responsibiltiy (e.g. such as a BUDGET), less government bloat, waste, ever-growing cradle-to-grave entitlements, etc.

But in the end, the Repugnicans will lose, and will eventually cave-in, because the majority of voters do not care about government bloat, waste, and fiscal responsibility.

The majority of voters are very much like the FOR-SALE, incumbent politicians that those voters repeatedly reward with perpetual re-election.

The majority of voters are FOR-SALE too.

Unfortunately, once the majority of the electorate discovers that it can demand anything it wants from the national treasury, that nation is doomed to decline, and possibly doomed to economic ruin.

At any rate, the majority of voters have the government that they elect, and re-elect, … , and re-elect, at least, possibly, until repeatedly rewarding failure, and repeatedly rewarding FOR-SALE, incompetent, arrogant, greedy, and corrupt incumbent politicians with perpetual re-election finally becomes too painful.

Posted by: d.a.n at October 1, 2013 10:23 AM
Comment #371836

Warren

Wow,.you compare stranding military personnel in harms way without supplies with reps trying save the American people from a bad law. That’s quite a reach.

Posted by: dbs at October 1, 2013 10:53 AM
Comment #371838

If Democrats pulled this kind of trick in 2007 the result would not have been “stranding military personnel in harms way”. The result would have been a prompt retreat and disengagement and fewer American casualties. But they didn’t do this because unlike the GOP, Democrats know how to compromise.

reps trying save the American people from a bad law

We’ve had bad laws before (not that I think the ACA is a bad law). If the law is truly terrible, the GOP should have no problem winning the 2016 election and repealing the law.

The very fact that the GOP has gone to such lengths demonstrates that they are scared that the law might actually work as planned. And a successful ACA would spell doom for the entire conservative movement; in the words of David Frum, it would be their Waterloo. I am looking forward to the next few months. Obama has enough cajones to wear his opponents thin. Later in October, Boehner will put country above party and violate the Hastert Rule, thereby allowing America to finally be able to get back on the right track.

Posted by: Warren Porter at October 1, 2013 12:05 PM
Comment #371840

kctim-
Certain elements of the law remain unpopular, but guess what else is unpopular? Holding the function of government hostage in order to repeal it, or force modifications.

Democrats, though, still hold the Senate, in fact hold it more solidly than last time. The GOP lost members in the House in the last election. Obama was reelected President almost as handily as last time, despite the fact that he was offering a full-throated defense of Obamacare.

So, at best, the verdict on Obamacare is mixed. Not so for holding the government hostage to get what you want. That polls very poorly, even among those who want it repealed.

As for what people elected them to do?

I think that’s a whole lot more complicated than you think it is. Your problem is that you only think about yourselves, what you want. It doesn’t occur to you that other voters, even the voters for these Republicans, might want something different?

Obama and the other Democrats were re-elected, and their numbers increase in both Chambers of Congress, supporting Obamacare. You might be able to cite a poll saying that in general the American people feel this way, but even so, Obama won re-election in spite of the troubles of the ACA, and most importantly, many of the Democrats, in their districts, aren’t running for re-election in districts that would look kindly on their caving in on the issue.

You’ve got your people to please, we’ve got ours!

If you want compromise, compromise must be offered. If you want to make it into a ridiculous, stupid, dysfunction-creating political battle, fine. But we’re not going to encourage that BS by letting it bully us into letting your insufficient numbers relitigate an issue.

dbs-
If the American people really wanted to be saved from that bad law that much, they would have elected more Republicans, so they could do it through an act of a Congress unified under one party. Instead, they handed Obama a 55-seat majority in that chamber, which to keep things in perspective is the best Republicans ever got.

The reach is the Republicans trying to force a repeal or a delay on the Healthcare law without having the numbers or majorities necessary to do it on their own.

To all:
The Problem for Republicans is that the best they can do isn’t good enough. There’s no real plan B, no next-best option for them. There’s no, “well, if the ACA’s going to stick around, how do we work with Democrats to make it fiscally sound, efficient, etc.”

It’s all about complete destruction, complete undoing. Like that one Congressman said, the point of delaying it a year is pushing it beyond the next election with the hopes of having the Senate in their control then.

President Obama’s learned some things about negotiating with the Republicans these last few years, and unfortunately, most of them basically work like “don’t concede a damn thing in advance,” and “don’t reward them for holding hostages.”

The Scorched Earth tactics basically force Democrats to build up the walls, shore up the defenses, to be less accommodating. If you want to be the dumbasses that slow or even crash the economy in the process of pursuing your political agenda, we can’t really stand in your way. We’re just not going to give into you anymore.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at October 1, 2013 1:17 PM
Comment #371842

Stephen

Holding government hostage? You sound as silly as Reid.

True, Dems control the Senate, I just find it highly hypocritical to not ask them for the same compromise you demand from the House?
Fact is, the Republicans caved on repeal, are now asking for a compromise, and the leftists are now telling them to f*&k off.

Yes, a lot of the law is unpopular, especially the government mandate. IF the law is sooooo great and everybody wants it, where’s the harm in listening to the people and compromising the mandate away?
Seems to me that IF Obama won because he ran a ‘full-throated defense of the ACA,’ the left shouldn’t be so afraid to listen to people.

“It doesn’t occur to you that other voters, even the voters for these Republicans, might want something different?”

Yup, i be 2 stupid to hav tinked dat.
Give me a break. There are some government leeches on the right just as there are some Dems who respect on the left. That’s why a pelosi couldn’t win here and why an Ike Skelton couldn’t win in the government dependent urban areas.

“You’ve got your people to please, we’ve got ours!”

But yet you demand only one side to ignore their people?

“But we’re not going to encourage that BS by letting it bully us into letting your insufficient numbers relitigate an issue.”

Or you’ll shut down government? I thought the Republicans were the ones doing that?

Posted by: kctim at October 1, 2013 1:53 PM
Comment #371844

kctim-
The framers did not write the Constitution just so you or some Tea Partier could get the wet sloppy kiss of full political wish fulfillment. You bitch and moan about the majority being able to impose on your rights, but have you ever stopped to consider theirs, especially their right not to have some minority’s politics imposed on them by coercion?

This whole enterprise starts out 22% for, and 77% against. Do you got that? Now, why is it that it’s right for those three-quarters, short of some court-case based constitutional imperative, to be dictated to by that one quarter? Who died and put them in charge?

If you profess to love the Constitution, but insist on getting your political way no matter how much other people object to it, you’re just a hypocrite. A real believer in this system understands that much of it is meant to force people like you and them to gain the consent and assent of your fellow citizens, your fellow voters before moving that things be changed as such.

You haven’t bothered. You think you’re privileged not to, because of how great and wonderful you think your ideas are, and how terrible and cataclysmically dangerous you think mine are.

Doesn’t matter. The system was meant to get in your way, and people like you have been straining against it ever since the tide started turning against conservatism during the last decade.

It might do folks like yourself some good to regroup and figure out how to do things the right way, the sustainable way. The question will be how much pain and suffering you go through before you realize that the people you’re so pleased with are essentially poisoning the public image of conservatism even worse than the incompetent jackasses that came before them.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at October 1, 2013 3:18 PM
Comment #371845

Stephen

Aw, did I hit a nerve? You usually just stop answering win your blatant hypocrisy is pointed out, so kudos.

I don’t want full political wish fulfillment, I want the rights of ALL to be respected, so yes, I do complain when the majority tries to terrorize the minority.

Do I ever stop to consider the rights of the majority? Nope. ALL means ALL, majority and minority.
What I don’t consider though, is when the a group creates rights at the expense of other rights. And then when you start complaining about your newly created rights being denied, I can only laugh.

“This whole enterprise starts out 22% for, and 77% against.”

So, you don’t believe the rights of that 22% should be taken into account?

“Now, why is it that it’s right for those three-quarters, short of some court-case based constitutional imperative, to be dictated to by that one quarter?”

Not giving you the government freebies you desire is NOT dictating anything to you, nor is it infringing on any of your rights.

“Who died and put them in charge?”

The founders did when they created a nation based on individual rights and limited government. The rights of those who disagree with you are just as important as the rights of those who agree with you. Do you deny this about the Constitution?

“If you profess to love the Constitution, but insist on getting your political way no matter how much other people object to it, you’re just a hypocrite.”

In the majority rules democracy you wish, yes. But we are a Constitutional Republic where we are supposed to be protected from people who wish to impose their will onto everyone.
I’ve told you a million times: Your people would not face the opposition you do IF you used the Constitution to take away rights.

“You haven’t bothered. You think you’re privileged not to, because of how great and wonderful you think your ideas are,”

“My” ideas are the same ideas that kept this free nation going, until your ideas started eating away at it.
Oh, and I don’t feel “priviledged” to anything. I am honored to believe as our founders and to not consider their ideas radical or extreme, as your people do.

“and how terrible and cataclysmically dangerous you think mine are.”

I know you can’t understand this, in fact you dismiss it as nothing more than a slogan, but many of us really do believe it is better to die free than to live as a slave.
Everybody does not believe money trumps freedom, Stephen. Sad that you do.

“Doesn’t matter. The system was meant to get in your way, and people like you have been straining against it ever since the tide started turning against conservatism during the last decade.”

Yes, the system your people have created is meant to get in the way of people who still believe in the principles that this nation was founded on.
Can’t argue against that.

“It might do folks like yourself some good to regroup and figure out how to do things the right way, the sustainable way.”

Meh, it’s too late. Way to many of you are dependent on government and you won’t be voting for freedom any time soon.

“The question will be how much pain and suffering you go through”

Sorry Stephen, but there won’t be any pain and suffering on my part. I’ve told you before that I have seen your government ‘utopia’ coming and I have prepared.
While you spend your time begging for government, I spend my time taking care of myself. While you whine about wanting new “rights,” I defend actual rights.
You see Stephen, unlike you, I am consistent in my beliefs and I actually practice what I preach.

“before you realize that the people you’re so pleased with are essentially poisoning the public image of conservatism even worse than the incompetent jackasses that came before them”

Sorry, but I’m NOT please with what passes as Republicans today. They are nothing but Dem lite. They fail because they have done nothing but embrace the nations lunge to the left over the past several decades.
When I do vote for them, it is only out of hope of stopping ‘progressive’ policy from ruining our lives.

You know, it’s funny. I actually tried to stay on your topic, even asked questions pertaining to your topic, but rather than answer them, you choose to give the leftist interpretation of the Constitution. Too funny.

Posted by: kctim at October 1, 2013 4:29 PM
Comment #371846

kctim,

Aren’t you blowing this way out of proportion? If the individual mandate is as bad as you say, won’t people simply vote for conservatives in 2016 and repeal it then? Why is it such an existential threat to our liberties?

Posted by: Warren Porter at October 1, 2013 4:40 PM
Comment #371851

kctim-
I think you and I could both agree that the Constitution frames certain unquestionable rights, free speech, due process, equal protection of the law, etc. These have been confirmed by ratification of the states as essential rights and freedoms.

Step beyond that, though, and you enter a realm of controversy. You talk about rights? Some Democrats think Healthcare should be a right, not merely the privilege of the wealthy. Some Republicans think a fetus should have the status of a legal person, not merely be considered part of the mother.

You glibly talk about the rights of all, but you stumble in the darkness on one truth that even the Framers in their day understood well: nobody agrees completely on what the rights of all should be!

Conflict. That’s what you, in your idealism, gloss over. Not everybody’s conception of the world is the same, can be the same, or should be the same. In some cases, a person has a perfectly legitimate interest to defend, at least on an individual level. But that interest may be trampling on the rights of many others, and their rights have to be considered, too.

The truth is, people are going to disagree. Congress is supposed to be a body where people representing all the different communities and interests and states sit down and work out those differences, filtering out the things only a few people want, and pretty much forming government to do the most good for the most people. We could theoretically do better, but this is the real world, so we have to satisfy ourselves with what you could call statistical good. There’s always going to be somebody’s ox that gets gored by Government. It’s not doing its job unless there’s somebody whose behavior gets constrained.

The question is, how do we decide it?

If only between a fifth and a quarter of this nation’s population even wants things to play out this way, then there are quite a few people who think the officials responsible screwed things up. I think those people have the right to reflect their dissatisfaction with that, and as most elections are decided by majorities, that can easily take the form of people losing elections.

As for limited government?

What a narrow, blinkered view of the Constitution. I mean, really, it wasn’t as if there was this strong, centralized government before, which the Framers put the metaphorical shackles on. No, the Articles of Confederation were so loosely written and the governments so loosely confederated that they could hardly get anything done.

The Constitution marks a profound centralization, clarification, and enhancement of the powers of government. The beauty of it, though, is that it also comes around, and sets conditions and limitations on that power, so the power isn’t just uniformly and arbitrarily increased, but only selectively so. Its like the difference between a line of colonial soldiers with muskets, and one of modern riflemen. The more empowered government is also forced to be more selective in how it employs that power.

There’s also a lot of brilliant counterbalancing in the structure, between the branches of government, and within those branches.

What you talk about is just a ham-handed defense of the ham-handed politics of the modern right. Your people are unwilling to just take a look at that Constitution, which the Democrats followed in passing the law, and see that your outcome is out of the question. You’ve had your judicial review, and the judges don’t agree with you, so that avenue has been closed off. What you’re left with is just this free floating hostility to a political order not your own.

But that’s a political order we are given the freedom under the Constitution to form. We are allowed to go in their and, when we have the ability, pass laws that do not run afoul of what the courts say is constitutional or not. You can’t say that the “rights of all” entitle you to go in there and extraconstitutionally demand that everything be done your way.

The Constitution gives the Senate the right to make its own decisions on laws. That’s the point of having it there in the first place, as a check on the House of Representatives. (and vice versa).

If we don’t want to destroy Obamacare on your behalf, That’s the Senate’s Constitutional Right.

You can pull your vague political alchemy, but I don’t buy it. I think you just want to justify trying to grab power beyond what your small numbers justify, and to do that, you turn the rights of a minority into the rights of all, the wishes of the few, somehow, into a prohibition that falls on everybody.

You are one small part of this whole system, just like me. It’s time you, and others like you, learned some humility and grasped that you are equals whose ideas and beliefs must compete with others, if you want them to become more common. You cannot demand, from the position of a minority, that EVERYBODY else do things your way. That’s tyranny. That’s oligarchy. That’s fascism.

This is a Republic, a democratic, representative one, and the point of Congress is not merely to be a sample for some official opinion poll, it’s to be a place where our representatives bargain together to get something most people in our country can live with, so this country can function.

This shutdown represents not merely the glaring failure of Conservatives to achieve dominance in that bargain, but their actual contempt for a system that has allowed their political rivals to win some ground, despite their egotistical picture of their own political superiority. Well, tough. I’ve lived a couple decades where my party’s political power was uncertain, where my people had to swallow compromises, a number of them bitter.

What privileges you, and others like you, from having to do the same? This is the price of living in a democratic, representative republic. You can’t always get what you want.

But like the old song says, and like the Republicans have failed to do, if you try real hard, you’ll get what you need. We can agree on running the relevant portions of government, and running them well, and do the things we can agree are in everybody’s interests.

I pity people who put politics above the function of their government. In real terms, politics is just the ideas we have about what might work. It should be a servant to creating what DOES work. Republicans are too busy trying to manifest their theoretical dreams in reality to note where reality wears back the illusion of imagination to reveal the way things actually operate.

You can boast of your principles, but mine run this way: if it works and makes things better, go with it, regardless of what label. Otherwise, change it, logically for the better if you can help it.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at October 1, 2013 6:01 PM
Comment #371858

Let me relate something that sort of gives you my frame of mind. When I was growing up, I was very much conservative. I don’t sport any tattoos, don’t have anything pierced, have never done drugs. I’m very big on law and order.

I can understand Republicans wanting to curb waste, corruption, and other issues like that. In fact I sympathize. Question is, are they doing that, and is the government capable of doing the things that the country as a whole asks of it under the law?

One of my major breaking points with Republicans in the early to mid-nineties was this government shutdown. It was one thing to want to hold back the excesses of government, but to cause this kind of dysfunction, this kind of BS? No, I couldn’t agree with that.

What I see is just one more piece of evidence that the GOP has crippled its ability to learn from its own mistakes. It wants to believe that if it just charges through and doesn’t compromise this time, doesn’t relent, it will win, and the new conservative order will triumph.

At the end of the day, though, I think they’ll find that the old guard Republicans relented for the same reason they’ll do now: because the public scorn will be withering, and a political liability for them. The Tea Party is doing a good job of trying to waste its political capital.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at October 1, 2013 7:22 PM
Comment #371872
OH PLEASE ! This law is the equivalent of Fords Edsel. The majority of Americans want no part of it. It is also the main reason for Dems losing the house in 2010.

One has to wonder what many of these people rally want. They don’t seem to know.

http://www.upworthy.com/obamacare-claims-its-first-victims-dudes-who-dont-understand-obamacare?c=bl3


http://www.latimes.com/business/money/la-fi-mo-jimmy-kimmel-obamacare-affordable-care-act-20131001,0,1174482.story

Posted by: j2t2 at October 2, 2013 9:27 AM
Comment #371874

Warren

Yes, by todays standards I probably am blowing the loss of another freedom way out of proportion. People now view material things of desire and convienence to be more important than their actual rights.

By 2016 the ACA will be so entrenched into our system that it will be impossible to repeal it. Just as with every other huge government program, people will substitute the government for their own responsibility and then become dependent on it.

Why is it such an existential threat to our liberties?
Because it takes away an individuals freedom of choice.
Because it punishes individual behavior.
Because it creates dependency.
Because it infringes on an individuals religious beliefs.

Posted by: kctim at October 2, 2013 9:59 AM
Comment #371878
Because it takes away an individuals freedom of choice.

Last time I checked, I am free to buy any insurance plan I want from the exchanges. And if none of those plans are acceptable, I can choose to buy no plan and pay a penalty instead. I pay the penalty with the understanding that it will provide money for me to enroll in a health care plan later if I develop a preexisting condition.

In an ideal world, I guess we could give people the option to not only opt out of the penalty, but also waive the prohibition on discrimination due to preexisting conditions. This would be easy to do the next time Republicans take control of the Senate & Presidency.

Because it punishes individual behavior. Because it creates dependency.
Not really.
Because it infringes on an individuals religious beliefs.
People who object to contraception won’t be paying for it. Posted by: Warren Porter at October 2, 2013 10:37 AM
Comment #371882

Stephen

Controversy only enters into the equation when we allow personal beliefs and emotions to guide our creation of legislation.
Without the interference of those two things, people do not have to agree on what the rights of all “should be,” because the rights of all are known.
There is no conflict.

I know how Congress is “supposed” to work, but what you “gloss over” is that there are guidelines they must follow. When those guidelines are perverted or ignored, you get the divided nation we have today.

“pretty much forming government to do the most good for the most people.”

Here’s the thing, Stephen: we disagree on what defines “the most good.”
You define it by how much government provides for society, where I define it by how well government protects the rights of the individual. The most good government can do is to let the individual choose what food to put on the table, NOT put the food on the table.

“The Constitution marks a profound centralization, clarification, and enhancement of the powers of government.”

More than those three things though, it also places restrictions on the federal government, favoring instead the state and the individual.
Ever notice how you must ignore both the state and the individual, when giving your interpretation of the Constitution?

“What you talk about is just a ham-handed defense of the ham-handed politics of the modern right.”

Then why is it that your policy is the one that requires re-interpretation and changing how things work? Why is it that it is your policy that is inconsistent with our history instead of mine?

“you turn the rights of a minority into the rights of all, the wishes of the few, somehow, into a prohibition that falls on everybody.”

Government not taking from one person and giving it to you does not violate any of your rights, nor does it prohibit you of anything.
Denying you the material things you desire is not tyranny, and not supporting a strong centralized all powerful government is the opposite of fascism.

“This shutdown represents not merely the glaring failure of Conservatives…”

It’s a failure of both parties. Liberals for believing a slight majority gives them a mandate to ram their policy down the throats of all Americans, and Republicans for waiting so long to address the issue in an effective manner.

“You can’t always get what you want.”

Isn’t it funny how what I want takes nothing from you, but what you want takes from me?

“I pity people who put politics above the function of their government.”

So do I. The problem is that too many of you believe the function of government is to provide you with what you desire.

“You can boast of your principles, but mine run this way: if it works and makes things better, go with it, regardless of what label.”

The problem is that your ‘principles’ are based totally on personal opinion. You see one person with a low quality of life and another person with a high quality of life, and you think what works and makes things better is to lower the quality of life of one in order to raise the quality of life for the other.

Posted by: kctim at October 2, 2013 11:13 AM
Comment #371885

Warrn

Freedom of choice is the freedom to choose on your own free will. Being ordered to choose from somebody else’s options of A or B is hardly a choice. Even moreso when you are penalized for not making what somebody else deems to be the right choice.

The Republicans won’t make the ACA voluntary for the same reason social security will never be made voluntary: both would fail.

“Because it punishes individual behavior. Because it creates dependency.
-Not really.”

What happens if you choose to forgo insurance and instead pay for your own health care needs? That behavior is punished by being forced to pay a penalty.

What happens with every other huge government program?
- Social Security: people now view it as their sole retirement plan and choose to buy the latest and greatest instead of save. They become dependent on government for their retirement.
- Medicare: people now view it as their health care plan for when they get old. They don’t save and they are dependent on government for their health care needs.

“People who object to contraception won’t be paying for it”

If a person is forced to buy insurance from a company that is forced to provide contraception, they are paying for contraception.
Are you saying companys won’t be required to provide contraception or that they can guarantee that premiums from certain people won’t go towards contraception? I am very glad to hear that.

Posted by: kctim at October 2, 2013 11:46 AM
Comment #371886

Such foolishness. Blame is cast on a group of people who have tried to do the right thing and the Obama-Reid-Durbin triumvirate has no option but to shut down the government. They have stated so in very plain language.
The usual leftist spewing of junk comes forth and pontificates on their fearless-feckless leader.
The usual lies and distortion from democrats is astounding. It is understandable when the only thing the left can hang their hat on is Obamacare.
Well we found out that democrats way or the hiway won out.
I am not going to itemize here all the crap from the democrats and their prize ACA package. It is too long a list.
For shame

Posted by: tom humes at October 2, 2013 11:53 AM
Comment #371888

kctim-
The irony is, for all the libertarian/conservative politics you may preach, you seem invasively concerned with how people think, how they engage in politics.

Face it: your arguments are based on provoking fear in people. That’s why you talk about rights in general, but rarely in particular. It’s easier to sell people on undermining regulation if you don’t tell people the freedom you’re campaigning for is the freedom for some Insurance company to overcharge you to pad their pockets, the freedom to cut you off if your care reaches a certain level, etc.

It’s also much easier to debate rights if you don’t have to condescend to debate about what those rights should be, if you can just emit a vague cloud of concern for it.

Controversy only enters into the equation when we allow personal beliefs and emotions to guide our creation of legislation.

Folks care about issues. Folks have individual opinions. Folks get passionate about what they think matters. Also, if you know your neuroscience, you’d know that what people feel about something constitutes as much the basis for their rational decision making, as it might any straying from it. Because we values things emotionally, we are capable of making complex decisions between them.

The idea, I would say, is not to exclude our feelings from decision making, but to discipline our feelings, to care about a subject, but also operate with enough of a reserve on the subject matter to avoid excessive bias’s or snap decisions.

Without the interference of those two things, people do not have to agree on what the rights of all “should be,” because the rights of all are known. There is no conflict.

Known from where? From the mystical land you’ve pulled out of thin air? Good god, look at the Ninth Amendment:

The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.

If all rights were known, literally laid out in some place, it wouldn’t be necessary. But somebody had the idea, “hey, if we list these rights, some bozo might say that’s all people have!” and decided to say that the Constitution’s set of rights did not “deny or disparage others retained by the people.”

Nobody had to worry about the rights of credit card holders in the days of George Washington. Nor did they have to worry about the rights of those getting internet service. Nor did they have to worry about Health Insurance costs.

The world has developed, and if our laws and government don’t keep up with that, there will be problems.

You’re right that we disagree on what counts for the good of the country. Probably not completely. If we broke it down, there are probably plenty of things we could agree on. But that’s the whole point of having a Congress. Not to provide a stage for people to strut on to deliver their election platform again, heedless of what anybody else wants, but instead a place from which to decide what the shape of the laws and structures of our society will be.

But your people have taken that and said, “If we don’t agree on everything, we agree on nothing!” Fact is, though, there is plenty we could agree on, that Congress could be passing, if it weren’t for the fact that we had such narrow-minded, narrow-focused jackasses forming a critical part of the present House majority.

Politics has been turned into a caricature of itself, with folks only focusing on pushing the extremes of their political beliefs at the expense of everybody else, with no calculation as to whether it would really pass.

More than those three things though, it also places restrictions on the federal government, favoring instead the state and the individual. Ever notice how you must ignore both the state and the individual, when giving your interpretation of the Constitution?

No, because I don’t ignore them. What I notice is that you assume a lot of beliefs on my part that even a cursory reading of my arguments would not support.

I’m fully aware of the facts on what the Constitution delegates.

“What you talk about is just a ham-handed defense of the ham-handed politics of the modern right.” Then why is it that your policy is the one that requires re-interpretation and changing how things work? Why is it that it is your policy that is inconsistent with our history instead of mine?

I call your politics ham-handed precisely because it doesn’t adapt, because it doesn’t acknowledge the changes that occur as a matter of course. The Framers gave us a government meant to change dynamically in those who are elected and appointed to it, meant to be able to change its laws dynamically to suit the needs of the people. It was not assumed at the outside that the views of the Framers would last forever. All this is, is the idolatry of the opinions of dead men who do not have to deal with our modern issues. Sure, there is due reverence to be had for the people who counterbalanced the different parts of government, and the different political forces so well. But they aren’t Gods, and they aren’t here, and guess what?

Guess what?

They expected us to RULE OURSELVES LIKE ADULTS! They did not expect us to keep coming back to them for eternity like scared children and weak-willed offspring returning to their parents to be told what to do. They expected us to rationally analyze and interpret the world around us, form an informed opinion about it, and then vote and deliberate like the full citizens we are to deal with it. You may have some nostalgia about the way the framers first arranged things, but they intended our Congress of today to deal with OUR issues, not govern to deal with things as they had it.

We are different in so many ways, with the balance between urban and rural almost precisely the opposite, our population sixty times greater, and spread across a continent, rather than hugging the East Coast. We have conquered diseases and invented new technologies whose hazards were as unimaginable to our ancestors as their benefits.

We must reinterpret the law again and again, and revise it when necessary, to deal with the world as it develops, not as we remember it from childhood or the history books.

You have this paternalistic view of those of us who want the government to do more than the bare minimum, and I find it appallingly patronizing. I think people are free to ask from the government what they want. They are also free to suffer the consequences of that, which will force them to reconsider things and revise that government back.

Put simply, you want to paralyze this sort of change for the sake of what you think will happen. I say, we’re supposed to learn, in part, from our experience, and shape our government and our expectations of it in that way.

Your principles are as based in your personal opinion as mine are. And I have as much right to mine as you have to yours. You and I both are free to compete, free to match our visions, and see who wins. And then people are free to deal with the implications that follow from the policy.

You want to pretend that you can see all ends, shape things perfectly. And you know, sometimes I think I know best, too. What this form of government we have here requires of us is that we are made accountable to the voters, to the results of what we do.

The right has gotten too fond of dictating terms to everybody else. People have decided its time for a change, and your people aren’t doing themselves favors by repeating the previously punished mistakes of the former Congressional majority.

tom humes-
Give me a break. Blame is cast on those who think that making passage of a Continuing resolution dependent on 40 times rejected attack on Obamacare is a good idea.

You knew the response you would get. You had an option, and you didn’t take it.

You can call it leftist junk, but we weren’t the ones threatening a shutdown if we didn’t get what we wanted. We were happy to pass a clean continuation of both debt ceiling and Budgetary authority

It’s your audacity in chewing us out that’s astounding.

You wanted a shutdown. You cheered your people when they promised one. You call it the right thing, but not everybody agrees, and you knew what would happen when you stuck the defund/delay Obamacare language in there. You’re not being clever, you’re just insulting our intelligence!

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at October 2, 2013 1:23 PM
Comment #371890
What happens if you choose to forgo insurance and instead pay for your own health care needs? That behavior is punished by being forced to pay a penalty.

Except this is no ordinary fine. It’s a fee to ensure that people can obtain insurance later on if they develop a preexisting condition.

What happens with every other huge government program? - Social Security: people now view it as their sole retirement plan and choose to buy the latest and greatest instead of save. They become dependent on government for their retirement. - Medicare: people now view it as their health care plan for when they get old. They don’t save and they are dependent on government for their health care needs.

Some people are stupid; that isn’t my problem nor is it yours. These people will receive their just deserts in due time.

If a person is forced to buy insurance from a company that is forced to provide contraception, they are paying for contraception.
It the insured individual doesn’t use contraception, then they aren’t paying for contraception. If an employer gives an employee money to buy health insurance, and the employee buys a plan with contraception (and uses the contraception), then the employer isn’t paying for contraception; the employee is.

As was the case before, persons employed in directly religious capacities can enroll in plans that do not cover contraception.

Posted by: Warren Porter at October 2, 2013 2:24 PM
Comment #371894

Daugherty writes; “We were happy to pass a clean continuation of both debt ceiling and Budgetary authority.”

Well DUH! More spending…more debt…a liberals wet dream come true.

Posted by: Royal Flush at October 2, 2013 4:05 PM
Comment #371895

Warren writes; “Except this is no ordinary fine. It’s a fee to ensure that people can obtain insurance later on if they develop a preexisting condition.”

LOL…When is a fine not a fine? When it is a fee!

When is a law not a law? When the president decides to delay or change it on his own.

It is official…we have a Tyrant as president. He demands, congress better obey.

Posted by: Royal Flush at October 2, 2013 4:13 PM
Comment #371896

Warren

“Except this is no ordinary fine. It’s a fee to ensure that people can obtain insurance later on if they develop a preexisting condition.”

No it’s a fine to punish those who refuse to participate, and thus help fund healthcare for others. Why do you think they are counting on the young and healthy to absorb the majority of the cost. A group that generally doesn’t purchase healthcare.


“Some people are stupid; that isn’t my problem nor is it yours. These people will receive their just deserts in due time.”

So this applies to those forced to contribute to a gov’t retirement plan, but not those who choose not to purchase healthcare by force of gov’t. IMO, neither is my problem.


“It the insured individual doesn’t use contraception, then they aren’t paying for contraception.”

The very nature of insurance makes this absolute nonsense. That’s like saying as a man you don’t get gynecological exams so you’re not funding them through your insurance premiums.


Posted by: dbs at October 2, 2013 4:15 PM
Comment #371897

You on the left keep saying that republicans wanted a shutdown when the left is the group that kept hollering that a shutdown was coming and they were hoping for it. Just follow the junk coming from the royal triumvirate and their ilk. republicans did what they could, but there was absolutely no talk or concession coming from the royal crew. Everything that was presented from a real budget to all the junk from the royal crew was the democrats were not going to talk to the house or republicans.
Bottom line is that the royal triumvirate wanted a shutdown and they got it. For shame

Posted by: tom humes at October 2, 2013 4:17 PM
Comment #371899

Stephen

“It’s also much easier to debate rights if you don’t have to condescend to debate about what those rights should be, if you can just emit a vague cloud of concern for it.”

You really don’t understand the difference betweem a right and an entitlement do you.


“Nobody had to worry about the rights of credit card holders in the days of George Washington. Nor did they have to worry about the rights of those getting internet service.”

Rights don’t change. Laws are there to protect those rights, and change to cover new technologies and situations. Did they have laws that made the theft of anothers property a crime 200 years ago? Is that not protecting a right to property?

“Nor did they have to worry about Health Insurance costs.”

Health insurance is not a right. A right does not require forced sacrifice by others. it just exists.

Posted by: dbs at October 2, 2013 4:32 PM
Comment #371903

Health insurance is not a right. A right does not require forced sacrifice by others. it just exists.
Posted by: dbs at October 2, 2013 4:32 PM

Daugherty and the libs are constantly beating the drum for “new rights” and proclaim that these new rights are found in the Constitution under the Welfare Clause. The actual unalienable rights are defined in our founding documents.

New Rights appear when the libs define a group of voters that all want something from government at the expense of others. They refer to these demands as being “only fair” or to “right past wrongs”.

Posted by: Royal Flush at October 2, 2013 4:50 PM
Comment #371905
A right does not require forced sacrifice by others. it just exists.

What about the right to an attorney?

Posted by: Warren Porter at October 2, 2013 5:18 PM
Comment #371908

Stephen

I only care what people think when it concerns our rights.

Both of our arguments are based on provoking fear, that is how we garner support for our position. The difference is that I am telling people that they will lose a right, freedom, liberty that they once had, and you tell them they will lose their government freebie, check, special treatment.

I do not fear businesses, envy individuals or think of myself as a constant victim of others because of my lack of material things. Their success or pockets NEVER enter my mind when I am talking about individual rights.

You believe my views on rights are general or vague because you do not listen. I believe rights apply across the board for all of us. I don’t believe they should be cherry-picked according to personal opinion.
Use your brain, think about that for a minute and you may see how incredibly simple it is to understand. Freedom of choice means freedom of choice for all choices, not freedom of choice for one thing but not another.

“Folks care about issues. Folks have individual opinions. Folks get passionate about what they think matters.”

But you should not use government to force those individual opinions onto everybody else. IF you are passionate about something, get off your ass and address it, don’t sit around expecting everybody else to do it for you.

“But somebody had the idea, “hey, if we list these rights, some bozo might say that’s all people have!” and decided to say that the Constitution’s set of rights did not “deny or disparage others retained by the people.”

Yep, and no matter how much you argue differently, that does not give people the go ahead to create so-called rights based on emotion. Especially when those so-called rights violate established rights.

Consumer rights can be dealt with regulations and courts.

“The world has developed, and if our laws and government don’t keep up with that, there will be problems.”

We would survive just fine with laws and government geared towards the individual. Why you fear that so much is beyond me.

“But that’s the whole point of having a Congress. Not to provide a stage for people to strut on to deliver their election platform again, heedless of what anybody else wants, but instead a place from which to decide what the shape of the laws and structures of our society will be.”

Your people strutted on to deliver their Party platform, heedless of what anybody else wanted, BEFORE the people could have their say in 2010. They totally disregarded and avoided the peoples voice so that they could shape the laws and structures of THEY wanted.
Having done that, and being fully aware of the division they created, your people now refuse to work towards any possible mutual agreement with those who dare disagree with them.

“No, because I don’t ignore them. What I notice is that you assume a lot of beliefs on my part that even a cursory reading of my arguments would not support.”

We have been on WatchBlog for what, ten plus years now? You have ALWAYS placed government and the desire of society ahead of the individual.

“I call your politics ham-handed precisely because it doesn’t adapt, because it doesn’t acknowledge the changes that occur as a matter of course.”

My politics adapt, they just don’t adapt how you wish them to because I place individual rights first.

“The Framers gave us a government meant to change dynamically in those who are elected and appointed to it, meant to be able to change its laws dynamically to suit the needs of the people.”

Which can be easily done while also protecting the rights of the individual. Many us believe our rights are the greatest need of the people and that they trump your emotions and convienence.

“It was not assumed at the outside that the views of the Framers would last forever.”

I agree with you every time you bring this up Stephen. But if we are going to throw away their views in the name of ‘progress,’ we should do it the correct way.

“All this is, is the idolatry of the opinions of dead men who do not have to deal with our modern issues.”

I understand the progressives disdain for our history and to be quite blunt, I believe that is exactly why our nation is in the poor shape that it is.

“They did not expect us to keep coming back to them for eternity like scared children and weak-willed offspring returning to their parents to be told what to do.”

No sh*t. That is why they were smart enough to give us the proper procedure to change what they had done. A procedure that the left avoids like the plague.

“but they intended our Congress of today to deal with OUR issues, not govern to deal with things as they had it.”

Issues that could easily be dealt with while still respecting the individual rights of all.

“We must reinterpret the law again and again, and revise it when necessary, to deal with the world as it develops, not as we remember it from childhood or the history books.”

Law? Sure. Rights? No. You don’t revise rights all willy-nilly as you like to do, you follow the Constitution to do it.

“I think people are free to ask from the government what they want.”

Not when it comes at the expense of others.

“Your principles are as based in your personal opinion as mine are. And I have as much right to mine as you have to yours.”

I totally agree.

“You and I both are free to compete, free to match our visions, and see who wins. And then people are free to deal with the implications that follow from the policy.”

Yep. The difference is that my principles do not infringe on any of your rights. Your desires, yes. But not your rights.

“The right has gotten too fond of dictating terms to everybody else. People have decided its time for a change, and your people aren’t doing themselves favors by repeating the previously punished mistakes of the former Congressional majority.”

Then the leftists will have free reign to change our once great nation into the average European country it so desires.
I have no false hopes of stopping you guys Stephen. More Americans than ever are now dependent on government. They WANT the freebies and easy life your people promise them. Me? I’m just getting ready for when you can’t deliver that utopia.

Posted by: kctim at October 2, 2013 5:52 PM
Comment #371911

Warren

That “fee” is still punishing behavior. For non-compliance with what government says is best for you the individual.

“Some people are stupid; that isn’t my problem nor is it yours. These people will receive their just deserts in due time.”

It IS my problem when it costs me.

“then the employer isn’t paying for contraception; the employee is.”

If I give you money to buy something, I am contributing money to its purchase.

“As was the case before, persons employed in directly religious capacities can enroll in plans that do not cover contraception.”

And what about those not employed as such but who hold the same deeply religious views?

Posted by: kctim at October 2, 2013 6:02 PM
Comment #371913
It IS my problem when it costs me.

Someone who doesn’t save for retirement receives the same SS benefit they would have gotten it they had saved. Therefore, their mistakes cost you and I nothing.

If I give you money to buy something, I am contributing money to its purchase.

If you compensate my labor by giving me money, that money is mine to spend however I want.

Posted by: Warren Porter at October 2, 2013 6:27 PM
Comment #371915

Education isn’t a Constitutional right either. But, we have found it a necessary and compulsory need for our society. We require every child to attend school by law and require every taxpayer, regardless of the fact as to whether they have children, to contribute to the education of others. Is that wrong? Is health care not a necessary need for our society equivalent to education?

The fact that the young will be forced to purchase health insurance and at a modified community rated standard is not so unreasonable in my opinion. The young will get old. They will get sick inevitably. Some will have unexpected accidents and illnesses. The higher premium payed today is a down payment on their ability to afford insurance in the future as they age and in the event of a catastrophic accident. It is also important for government to assure that the risk is spread across ages for the simple reason that the inevitable escalated cost due to aging and accidents will fall on the government and the general taxpayer.

Unless the general public is willing to let people die in the streets if they have no insurance or allow the older and sicker to become simple government welfare cases, then we need to have everyone contributing to the universal risk pool. Otherwise, we, the general taxpayer, will end up funding the free riders and absorbing the costs of the sick through government funded high risk pools, etc. There is no alternative and that fact is clearly understood by Republican proposals for health care reform.

Posted by: Rich at October 2, 2013 6:49 PM
Comment #371919

There’s a lot of blame to go around. Here’s a missive from a Facebook friend that I agree with:

Senator Harry Reid (D-NV) makes me sick. He just said that Obamacare…”is another Social Security, it’s another Medicare.” Nonsense! When Medicare was written in 1965, President Johnson consulted with Senate minority leader Everett Dirksen every day. Barack Obama never consulted with Senate minority leader Mitch McConnell, not a single time. Medicare was written in close consultation with Republicans. Obama Care was written in secret, in a locked room, with no Republicans allowed to be present. Republicans were allowed to openly participate in improving the Medicare bill and many of their suggestions were adopted by informal amendment. Not a single Republican idea to improve Obama Care was adopted by the Senate either by “friendly” or “formal” amendment. Medicare was passed with five to one Republican support in the Senate and three to one support in the House of Representatives. Obama Care could not attract not even one Republican vote in either house. Medicare, though in danger, has endured for forty years. Obama Care is burning down at its launch. Does Harry Reid really believe we’re all that dumb? Of course if a lot of us weren’t that dumb, Harry Reid would not be Senate majority leader.
Posted by: Kevin L. Lagola at October 2, 2013 8:10 PM
Comment #371920

Kevin, please! Republicans openly stated from the very beginning that they were opposed to the ACA in it’s entirety. Period. There was no negotiation because the Republicans took the position of opposition to the entire concept. Odd since it was their proposal in the first place. But, those are the facts.

Don’t believe that, then just look at what is currently occurring. The Republican party is committed to repealing the entire bill. The recent hostage taking for a one year delay fools no one since it was preceded by over 40 votes to repeal the entire Act.

Posted by: Rich at October 2, 2013 8:24 PM
Comment #371922

Kevin,

Did you forget about the Gang of Six?

Max Baucus spent months negotiating with Mike Enzi, Chuck Grassley and Olympia Snowe.

Posted by: Warren Porter at October 2, 2013 8:32 PM
Comment #371923

We should storm the Capitol, grab Ted Kruz by the scruff of the neck, drag him out, tar and feather him and run him back to Canada on a rail. He needs to be gone permanently!

Posted by: McGee at October 2, 2013 8:36 PM
Comment #371932

Warren,
You beat me to it. Apparently people have already forgotten the protracted negotiations between Baucus, Grassley, and the other senators.

Posted by: phx8 at October 2, 2013 9:39 PM
Comment #371954

Warren

“Someone who doesn’t save for retirement receives the same SS benefit they would have gotten it they had saved. Therefore, their mistakes cost you and I nothing.”

By being dependent on government for all of your needs, you put an undue strain on government. Your irresponsibility means government must raise taxes to keep you in line with cost of living adjustments, and it requires your use of other government programs. The more people dependent on government means government needs more and more money, and that only comes from raising taxes. To say it costs nothing is ridiculous.

Government mandates also steal money that could otherwise be used for a greater return.

“If you compensate my labor by giving me money, that money is mine to spend however I want.”

Not true. You must spend it on the health insurance government forces me to offer you and, if that insurance pays for something you do not approve of, tough shite.
Or, you are forced to spend it on a government exchange and pay more.
Or, you are forced to spend it on a punitive tax for not obeying the government.
Or, you

Posted by: kctim at October 3, 2013 9:59 AM
Comment #371955
Your irresponsibility means government must raise taxes to keep you in line with cost of living adjustments

This is completely out of line with reality. There has never been a tax increase to provide for larger cost of living adjustments.

The more people dependent on government means government needs more and more money, and that only comes from raising taxes. To say it costs nothing is ridiculous.
How does the irresponsible retiree cost more than the responsible one? If all else is equal, both people receive the exact same SS benefit?
you are forced to spend it on a punitive tax for not obeying the government.
The size of the penalty is so trivial that it can hardly be considered “punitive”. Posted by: Warren Porter at October 3, 2013 10:12 AM
Comment #371976
Stephen Daugherty wrote:Everybody Looks Bad. Congratulations.
But then blames almost (if not all of) everything on Repugnicans.

I think the title of the article makes a lot of sense, but the body of the article is just more wallowing in the partisan-warfare.

Stephen Daugherty wrote:10%. Getting a rating like that is like begging to get your ass kicked out of office, but somehow Republicans have managed it.
Nevermind that the majority of people in Congress are Republican (232 in the House, 46 in the Senate, which is 278 which is 52.0% of Congress; as of 26-SEP-2013).

Previously, in year 2010, Democrats had 255 people in the House, and 59 in the Senate, which is a total of 314, which is 57.6% of Congress.

So, who leads in losing seats in Congress?
Who still has the majority in the House?

So, your comment makes no sense, since BOTH Democraps and Repugnicans managed to “get your ass kicked out of office”.

I am neither Democrap or Repugnican, but the “begging to get your ass kicked out of office, but somehow Republicans have managed it.” rings empty when you see how many Democraps have got their “ass kicked out of office” since 2010.

The fact is, it doesn’t matter much who the IN-PARTY or OUT-PARTY is, when both parties enjoy 85%-to-90% re-election rates, because the majority of voters really don’t care enough to stop the bad habit of repeatedly rewarding incompetent, irresponsible, greedy, corrupt incumbent politicians with 85%-to-90% re-election rates.

Stephen Daugherty wrote:The 10% rating, I think, represents the strain between what people want, and what they’re getting.
Wow. I am amazed that it isn’t ONLY and COMPLETELY ALL the Repugnicans fault!?! Could you not make yourself to go so far to say what your really wanted to say….it is all the Republicans’ fault!?! So, you do have some standards afterall, eh?

At any rate, the majority of voters have the government that they elect, and re-elect, … , and re-elect, at least, possibly, until repeatedly rewarding failure and FOR-SALE, incompetent, arrogant, and corrupt incumbent politicians with perpetual re-election finally becomes too painful.

Posted by: d.a.n at October 3, 2013 4:18 PM
Comment #372006

Kevin L - that would be a nice post if it were actually true. Obama tried to get the Republicans engaged on the ACA but they refused as it was their position to block anything and everything coming from the president. They were busy out spreading misinformation about killing grandma and death panels. They had their chance and they decided not to be a part of it. Too late for the GOP now.

This stunt pulled by Ted Cruz and his House of Representative lemmings is just that, a stunt. Cruz admitted to his colleagues in the Senate that he had no end game or strategy to get to somewhere - he was just blathering, taking a wrecking ball to the government, and doing some fundraising.

For once, Obama is doing the right thing by not negotiating with the Boehner. The Dems accepted the budget numbers from the GOP and the sequester, that was their compromise. Obamacare is and should be off the table. It has nothing to do with this resolution. The GOP lost the last election by 5 million votes and if it weren’t for some clever Gerrymandering they would’ve lost the House too as they recieved 500,000 fewer voted nationwide than the Democrats. Now they think they can still have all the rejected ideas that they ran on? Really? If Obama caves in, when will it end? This is just a temporary fix, so in a couple of months what are these geniuses going to do? What’s the next piece of this president’s legacy that they will try to erase? Just from a strategic point of view Obama would be dumb to give an inch and punch these bullies square in the nose so they don’t do it again. It’s the GOP that put the economy on the line, it’s the GOP that could end this in a matter of moments.

Posted by: tcsned at October 4, 2013 3:29 PM
Comment #372014

kctim-
Reason is not separate from emotion. We have to value things, neuroscience tells us, in order to make decisions about them. What we call reason is the disciplining of this process.

Law is a form of reason. The difference between that reason and other kinds is that people are bound to it. The framers bound us to a system that had the rule of law as its basis. Then they created a system that would modify the people who formed that law, allowing them to modify the law, so that this reason would continue to follow the course of what was best for society.

Absolute freedom? It’s just words. We have relative degrees of freedom. Some things we can’t do because we don’t have the resources, some because we either don’t know how or never could know how. Some things we can’t do because to do them we need a bunch of people we haven’t convinced to agree with us. Some things we can’t do because there’s a law against it, and we decide to obey the law.

I don’t trust idealizations, nor reliance on hard rules alone. The human mind is built with great resources for bending the rules, for exploiting them, for exploiting the system. Winning the games of these systems doesn’t always, often doesn’t, come down to virtue.

Whatever you say, here’s my attitude about government: it’s ours. We can govern ourselves how we please. But we can’t escape either being imperfect, or fully escape the consequences of what we do. More importantly, there is a balance we constantly have to strike between having a nation where people aren’t at each other’s throats, and one where people aren’t at each other’s throats.

Wait, what? Put simply, there are two possible problems in my view: to have too much law, or not enough. Make that three possible problems: too much, not enough, or not right, not constructed with due attention to what’s going on.

There are basic rights we get for free from the Constitution (just like the government gets some things for free, like the exclusive right to print currency). And then there are all the rights we debate over, all the obligations, too. In other words, what we debate over in politics.

The framers gave us the freedom to decide what rights are. They also gave us the freedom to have opinions on what those rights are. What bugs me about you, in essence, is that you talk about rights as a generality, but you don’t deal with specific ideas, much less specific policies or anything like that. It’s hard to formulate your own response to a person’s position, when it’s just… Whatever!

See, I’m not some caricature who just uniformly believes in all law, all govern, no freedom all the time. Not even close. I’m an individual with the capacity to see things individually. One of the big harms of excessive reliance on partisan talking points is how irrelevant the overarching, vague points are to most of our lives. Sometimes its a simple matter of deciding what you believe is right on the ground level.

We can’t have perfect freedom. The minority can’t, and shouldn’t get every thing it wants at the expense of the majority, and at the end of the day, it can’t get everything it wants without conflict. Nobody can. There will always be a disagreement. Either you acknowledge that, and acknowledge that people will have to settle their differences to move forward with the business of our nation, or you invest yourself in the fallacy that you, of all people can get everything you want, all the freedoms to do all you want, and nobody else should have the right to say no to you.

Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at October 4, 2013 7:20 PM
Comment #372018

“The Dems accepted the budget numbers from the GOP and the sequester, that was their compromise.”

tcsned,

You are correct. The general CR is already a compromise budget favoring the Republican position. Holding it further hostage to Obamacare is a bridge too far. In fact, it is insulting to the American people and they know that. Obamacare is the law of the land whether you agree with it or not. Attempting to subvert that law by budget extortion is dangerous and unseemly. Obama needs to hold the line on this issue.

Posted by: Rich at October 4, 2013 7:56 PM
Comment #372041

With the ever-growing issues surrounding the government’s ACA website, Obama and company should seriously rethink delaying Obamacare.

This problem isn’t a traffic issue, it’s an implementation issue. All told, it is, as CNBC reports — a “PR nightmare in the works.” See article here.

Posted by: Kevin L. Lagola at October 5, 2013 9:47 AM
Comment #372042

I have my own computer problem — my hyperlinks aren’t linking. LOL!

Here’s the link to the aforementioned CNBC article / video via the old-school method: WTH


Posted by: Kevin L. Lagola at October 5, 2013 9:59 AM
Comment #372043

Why aren’t my links working? I can’t “Preview” my posts either.

Posted by: Kevin L. Lagola at October 5, 2013 10:00 AM
Comment #372053

Obamacare is the law of the land whether you agree with it or not. Attempting to subvert that law by budget extortion is dangerous and unseemly. Obama needs to hold the line on this issue.
Posted by: Rich at October 4, 2013 7:56 PM

If what you say is true Rich, why then does obama see fit to over-reach his executive power by granting exemptions and delays for corporations, members of congress, and unions? obama himself is subverting the law for political reasons.

Posted by: Royal Flush at October 5, 2013 4:21 PM
Comment #372068

Royal Flush,

The implementation of a major health initiative is obviously going to have some problems. The Medicare drug program of the Bush administration was plagued with problems during its implementation but they were resolved and the program is operating fairly smoothly and with some unexpected savings over the projected costs.

The same is going to occur with the ACA. Perhaps more so do to its larger scope. The executive branch is charged with the administration and execution of law. Holding the executive to rigid timetables is to deny him/her the necessary flexibility needed to efficiently implement the law. If the executive has abused his discretion in that regard, then the proper approach is to go to court for redress.

As to the Congressional exemption, there is none. Members of Congress and their staffs will be required to obtain their insurance on the exchanges formed under the ACA as the law requires. The only issue is whether the federal government would be providing Congress and their staffs payment equivalent to the amount of the prior government contribution for health insurance in lieu of directly providing such health insurance on the general federal health insurance benefits package. In other words, the Office of Personnel Management determined that the ACA didn’t require a reduction in their general compensation but only that they needed to purchase on the exchanges.

Posted by: Rich at October 5, 2013 9:05 PM
Comment #372082

Rich

“The executive branch is charged with the administration and execution of law. Holding the executive to rigid timetables is to deny him/her the necessary flexibility needed to efficiently implement the law.”

The executive branch is charged with ENFORCING the law. Any changes to the law, including delays of implementation, have to be approved by congress and then signed by the president. He cannot unilatteraly change the law. He does not have the power to legislate.

“If the executive has abused his discretion in that regard, then the proper approach is to go to court for redress.”

This is already in the works. The more accurate term would “abuse of power” not ‘abuse of discretion”.

“As to the Congressional exemption, there is none.”

No there isn’t, but there is also no subsidizing of their premiums, and this is where Obama has once again overstepped his authority. there is no provision in the law That subsidizes the premiums of congressional staffers. He cannot decide on his own to change that provision. Congress must change it.

Posted by: dbs at October 6, 2013 8:41 AM
Comment #372085

“No there isn’t, but there is also no subsidizing of their premiums, and this is where Obama has once again overstepped his authority.”

The ACA is silent on federal contributions to the members of Congress and their staffs. It only says that they must get their insurance on exchanges or programs established under the ACA. The sponsor of the amendment, Sen. Grassley, has said that he had intended that the federal contribution to premiums would remain “But because of what Grassley called a “drafting error,” the amendment left out language that would have explicitly given lawmakers the same before-tax employer contribution as any other federal employee gets.”

The Office of Personnel Management (OPM) has issued the final rules for implementation of the ACA for Congress. They continue the federal contribution for health insurance but require that it be done through the program established for small businesses (SHOP) in which the employer determines the level of coverage, makes premium contributions and the employee is limited to those choices available on the exchange within the plan level chosen.

“The final rules state that while the administration has not changed its view that the ACA provision did not override the FEHBP premium-sharing authority, “SHOPs are designed to provide employer-sponsored group health benefits and are, therefore, the appropriate environment in which to provide an employer contribution to Members of Congress and congressional staff. Further, this ensures that Members of Congress and congressional staff do not have additional choices in the individual Exchanges with a Government contribution that other individuals lack.”

Posted by: Rich at October 6, 2013 10:30 AM
Comment #372087

Rich wrote; “If the executive has abused his discretion in that regard, then the proper approach is to go to court for redress.”

That has happened already in a suit filed by Judicial Watch.

Posted by: Royal Flush at October 6, 2013 12:22 PM
Comment #372114

Warren

“This is completely out of line with reality. There has never been a tax increase to provide for larger cost of living adjustments.”

Do you seriously believe programs benefit only when taxes are raised for them directly? Sorry, but that is not reality in any way shape or form.

“How does the irresponsible retiree cost more than the responsible one? If all else is equal, both people receive the exact same SS benefit?”

An irresponsible retiree is also dependent on other government programs, while those who save properly are not. The more irresponsible people there are, the more money is needed, so taxes are raised on all.
The use of more government services equals more costs.
More people using government services equals more costs.

“The size of the penalty is so trivial that it can hardly be considered “punitive”.”

It is a penalty for not buying what government mandates you buy. It is done to deter you from disobeying what the government says you must do. That is punitive.

Posted by: kctim at October 7, 2013 10:00 AM
Comment #372115
Do you seriously believe programs benefit only when taxes are raised for them directly? Sorry, but that is not reality in any way shape or form.

This is “moving the goal posts”. You claimed “Your irresponsibility means government must raise taxes to keep you in line with cost of living adjustments”. Today’s COLA is calculated the same way it has been since the Ford administration and has not gone through any sort of recent expansion. COLA is solely a function of the CPI.

An irresponsible retiree is also dependent on other government programs, while those who save properly are not
So is the problem with SS or are the other programs the problem? Posted by: Warren Porter at October 7, 2013 12:15 PM
Comment #372384
Those insults of yours come so easily to you. But look at that ten percent approval rating. There’s no groundswell of support for the sweeping reformers you love, only frustration and shock at the decadence of your congress.
Posted by: Stephen Daugherty at September 30, 2013 11:48 PM

It amazes me how you always conveniently forget there are Democratics in congress as well as republicans. Perhaps not forget as much as ignore, eh Stephen Daugherty?

You are correct to say there is no groundswell of support for sweeping reform, but I will qualify that statement. There is no groundswell of support for sweeping reform from government officials or those in the media! I haven’t run across anyone who is saying they support someone who will chronically lie to them over someone who is trying to change a corrupt, ineffective, immoral system. I don’t see them separating Democratics from Republicans at all!

They say “Congress” has an approval rating of 10%, Stephen Daugherty. Let me remind you, congress includes Democratics! Congress has consistently included Democratics since 1820! It has included Federalists from the git go! Your lies of omission are glaringly obvious. Get off your high horse and accept the fact that your party is a major part of the problem.

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Comment #375126

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Comment #375128

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Comment #378714

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