Showing 1 - 10 of 58 posts found matching keyword: politics

Here comes the judge!

I don't live in Forsyth County, but I like this guy's style, if not his spelling.

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Who wants a Walter health insurance update? No one? Well, you're getting one anyway.

As we all know, Georgia has done its best to destroy any healthcare options for poor individuals like me, and the Republicans controlling the federal government have, to their credit, only managed to make shit worse. So now, for the third year in a row, I have to scramble to figure out what my options are. Too bad no one else seems to know, either.

Blue Cross Blue Shield has withdrawn from offering individual plans where I live in Georgia, leaving me with only Kaiser Permanente (KP) HMO options available under the Affordable Care Act. The problem here is that I cannot keep my doctor, and no urgent care facility within 40 miles or hospital within 70 miles accept the Healthcare Exchange (HIX) plans. That's... not ideal. But it might still be my best choice. At least it theoretically pays for something if, say, I was hit by a bus in New York City.

Not that I have a lot of other choices. I have looked at some off-Marketplace plans, and they are really worthless. Twelve hundred dollars per year gets me a couple of urgent care visits and not much else. Compared to that, I might as well have no insurance and just pay the tax penalty ($695).

So the KP HIX HMO plan looks like the best option for me, though only so long as I make little enough to take advantage of the low-income subsidies. (Sweet spot catch-22: if I make a little more money, I'm priced out of health insurance, and as a male, I wouldn't qualify for Medicare in the state of Georgia even if I earned nothing at all.) It is my understanding that KP has to continue to offer me the subsidies discount if I qualify even though that asshole Trump has vowed not to reimburse them, essentially guaranteeing that next year I'll have no healthcare options at all.

I've been lucky so far, but I can't stay healthy forever, guys.

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Oh, fuck it. Lock her up!
From Batman "Hizzoner the Penguin" (November 2, 1966) by way of BullysComics.Blogspot.com

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I just saw NBC's Chuck Todd say that the President's determination in insisting that "many sides" were culpable in the disaster that was Charlottesville this past weekend robs the Office of the President of its "moral authority."

That's bullshit.

The current president never had any moral authority. He insults people left and right, usually for nothing more than disagreeing with him. He laughed at American P.O.W.s. He bragged about sexual assault. He openly encouraged violence and intolerance. He lied constantly about everything. And that was all before he got into office.

What's he done since then to reclaim the moral high ground? He has tried to sabotage a federal investigation into a foreign government's role in his own election. He constantly attacks the integrity of his own hand-picked staff. He talks trash to Boy Scouts. He openly encourages violence and intolerance. He lies constantly about everything. Is refusing to abide by the Emoluments clause in the Constitution he swore to uphold supposed to be moral?

No, Chuck Todd. The man in the White House didn't lose any moral authority over Charlottesville. He didn't have any to lose. You can't go down from nothing.

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I'd say that most people give up by the time they get to 4, but I'd only be kidding myself. They never get past 1.

At least I still get to worship graven idols
back cover of Is This Tomorrow: America Under Communism (1947)

Not to sound too Communist, but shouldn't "Be American first" be the first commandment?

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Given that earlier this week we saw the Republican majority in the Senate change their own rules to allow them to steal a seat on the Supreme Court, it might be interesting to note that the 17th Amendment to the Constitution became law on this day in 1913. The 17th Amendment calls for Senators to be elected by the people, not appointed by the state legislatures. Try and imagine something like that passing in 2017.

Amending the Constitution requires a 2/3 vote in both houses of Congress. These days, votes are taken almost strictly down party lines. Unless one party or another gains 2/3 of both the House and Senate, modifying the Constitution is impossible. (Perhaps that's why the Republicans deny global warming exists. If they can stall long enough, the liberal coasts will be underwater, and they'll be free to do whatever they want.)

The last Constitutional Amendment to be successfully ratified was the 27th, adopted in 1992. That might seem kind of recent until you realize that the amendment was first proposed as part of the original Bill of Rights in 1789. It had to wait 202 years before final adoption. What does the 27th Amendment do? It prevents Congress from doing the only thing it's likely to agree on: giving itself a pay raise.

At the current level of partisanship in this country, it might be 202 years until we see them agree on anything else.

It's true what they say: Rome didn't fall in a day.

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I make fun of newspapers a lot, but they're not always the problem. For example, today I read this Newnan Times-Herald lede:

"Coweta County Crooner Richard Hawk is now officially a member of the Georgia Child Fatality Review Panel."

Yes, I thought it was odd that a singer would be appointed to such an important sounding government position, but this is 2017. We have a brain surgeon running government housing, a movie producer directing the treasury, an anti-science lawyer scuttling the EPA, a bespectacled idiot in charge of a department he can't remember the name of, and a game show host in the White House (on weekdays — on weekends he pretends to be an amateur golfer in Florida). In that light, a singer taking a state government position doesn't seem so strange.

But that's not what the paper really said. After I had my breakfast and was thinking more clearly, I realized that the man wasn't a "crooner" but a "coroner." Appointing a professional coroner makes way more sense for a Fatality Review Panel.

If only the federal government was so rational.

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On January 20, 1993, my high school A.P. American history teacher, Mrs. Pat Tidwell, let us watch the inauguration of President William Jefferson Clinton in the school media center (i.e., library) during class. The bell to end class rang before Clinton had actually been sworn in, so I remained behind for a few extra minutes before hustling to my next class, English Literature. I wore a purple pullover and blue jeans with a Miami Dolphins Starter® jacket.

Frankly, I don't remember that day all that well.

(What I do remember was that I was not (and remain not) a fan of Mr. Clinton. I found his campaign, including playing saxophone for Arsenio Hall and telling MTV that he smoked but didn't inhale, to be incredibly pandering. Gennifer Flowers didn't help my impression.)

Anyway, as I was preparing to leave, the band started playing "Hail to the Chief." Turning to the teacher, I quipped, "They should be playing the Beatles 'The Fool on the Hill'." I still think it's a pretty good joke.

I wrote all of that just to say that for Donald John Trump's inauguration on Friday, the band should play "Back in the U.S.S.R."

It's funny because it's true.

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When the Republicans chose Donald Trump to be their representative in the general election, I was convinced that they had selected the only man who couldn't win, a reality television star and self-proclaimed business genius who ruined both the USFL and Atlantic City, New Jersey. Obviously, I underestimated how much Americans hate Hillary Clinton. I hate being wrong.

People say they hate government, yet they keep re-electing the same Congressmen. They say they want to change a broken system, but they vote for the same political party their parents voted for. So don't try to tell me that this election was about anything other than a referendum on whether they wanted a woman who lied about her correspondence to run their country.

Just think how big a win it would have been if the Republican candidate hadn't called American P.O.W.s "losers" or said that most Mexicans in America were rapists or bragged about how he sexually harassed women or called the whole system rigged unless he won. Ye gods. This was the better option?

While I join at least 50% of Americans trying to come to terms with the surprise election outcome of a lifetime, I admit that I have already learned something new. I used to believe that people voted for the candidate that offered them what they wanted. While that's still true, I learned that what they want isn't a job (which Trump can't create) or a handout (which Trump won't offer). What they want is a friend. In politics, personal charisma trumps all. Everyone's willing to forgive their friend for just about anything, even being an ill-tempered, misogynistic racist. Sorry, Hillary, but you aren't any better at being charismatic than you are at managing your email.

Now America's newest cult of personality friend is Donald Trump. We'll just have to live with him and his foibles until someone more charismatic comes along. (What's Oprah doing these days?)

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Screenshot from my phone on election night:

I voted for Slim Pickens

When the BBC is showing a mushroom cloud, you know things are bad.

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To be continued...

 

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