38 thoughts on “Tea Leaves

  1. So many of us want Graham out down here I can’t understand why everyone says he’s untouchable. Our bench is deep, our Chi is strong; we don’t have to settle for “Light in the Loafers” Lindsey, but we are told that we do.

    I’ve gotten quite involved with the SC GOP, and I am telling you, I am prepared to work my ass off to get that cuck primaried, at the least; and not by a debauched fop, this time.

  2. Graham should be more honest and suggest we raise the payroll tax by a third if we really want these programs. Then we’ll see how much we really need a new entitlement.

  3. I think we will get single-payer.
    I’m not in favor of it, but if we Americans choose to provide health care to citizens as a public benefit, so be it. If Republicans and conservatives want to shape the discussion they need to stop talking about health care in terms of libertarian platitudes.
    I have a friend in Western Wisconsin. That is Trump territory. Recently his wife had a heart attack. She was airlifted by helicopter to General Hospital in Minneapolis, where they put in a stent. She spent three days as an inpatient. My friend, who is a construction worker, complained that even with insurance, he had to pay $6000 out of pocket.
    It was no use to tell him that the helicopter ride alone probably cost five times $6000. Working people want to know that if they get sick they will get good health care and won’t face bankruptcy.
    The reason the GOP couldn’t repeal and replace Obamacare was because they had nothing to replace it with. The Republicans need a Newt Gingrich; instead they have have Paul Ryan.

  4. I don’t like it, but let’s place blame where it belongs; Barry Soetoro. I hate just about everything he did, and a great part of that is he is a (*&)(&* genius at making getting out of his idiot plans as difficult as possible.

    Best way of getting out of HIDA (Health Insurance Deform Act) is to gradually get rid of the most obnoxious regulations and equalize the tax treatment of self-paid vs. employer-paid insurance, Then you hope and pray that we can persuade enough people to get major medical (MP’s example) that single payer seems like the idiotic option that it is.

  5. BB, the more obvious existing flaws in Obamacare are there because Republicans insisted on putting them there, not because of unforeseen consequences of the original proposal. It’ll be interesting to see how they arrive at massive tax cuts, pay down the national debt while preserving military spending, social security and Medicare. Which to me appears to be arithmetically impossible.

  6. Yes, Emery, the GOP had a huge role in the Health Insurance Deform Act, which is why the number of Republican votes for the plan was ZERO.

    Sorry, Emery, but even by your standards, that is insanely stupid. The GOP had little hand in HIDA, and the worst features, like the ending of preexisting conditions clauses, were put in there over strong conservative opposition.

    Hint for ya; assume that people you’re interacting with online just might have read the papers, and will know when you’re full of it.

  7. Emery mewled: ” the more obvious existing flaws in Obamacare are there because Republicans insisted on putting them there, “

    This is jaw dropping stupidity on your part emery

    When queried by house members, both Republican AND Democrat, about the contents of H.R. 3590 Pelosi said “you have to vote for it to find out whats in it”

    The democrats made it clear from the start that this was their bill and they neither solicited nor accepted Republican input.

    I’m sure all your “progressive” friends nod approvingly when you say crap like this but there is a significant population who get their news from sources more credible that Stewart and Colbert.

  8. There were 188 poison pill amendments made to the ACA trying to kill it, but Democrats gleefully swallowed every one?

    Damn those Republicans!

  9. Emery squalled “there are 188 republican amendments in the ACA.”

    as usual you have no cite for that do you?

  10. NW, I think where Obama put them was “in the back of the bus”. We should simply be grateful that it wasn’t under the bus, where he puts his former friends, I guess.

  11. I’m not here to defend the ACA. I support block grants to states. Let each state determine the level of healthcare they can afford. (balanced budget amendments).

  12. Yes, Emery, you weren’t defending HIDA, which is why you led with a bunch of tu quoque attacks. #believingyounofurtherthanIcanthrowyou

    And block grants? Please. The last thing Illinois and California need is more mad money from the federal government. There needs to be some point where we say “You are going to be spending your own money on what you want…not money from other states or Chinese investors, but your own.”, since there are no solutions to our healthcare crisis that do not have as their foundation a bit of personal responsibility.

  13. Understood, but we need to do better than that. Mad money in the hands of Illinois and California, not to mention Minnesota, can only lead to disaster.

  14. Yet AGAIN eTASS is caught lying, deflecting, trolling, misdirecting and moving the goal posts. He sure as hell is very consistent. More proof that everything he says is a lie including “the” and “is” and is deserving of mocking and derision.

  15. “I support block grants to states. Let each state determine the level of healthcare they can afford. (balanced budget amendments).”

    You really don’t see the contradiction there, do you, Emery?

    Minnesota can afford X level of healthcare and still maintain a balanced budget. But Minnesota can afford X + Y level of health care if we get federal block grants. So that’s better, right? More healthcare, and it’s free.

    NO, ITS NOT FREE! Block grants take money from the states and give it back to the states, but not equally. Minnesota might come out ahead, if we can steal some of Nebraska’s money, but we might also come out behind, if Oregon steals ours. That is the exact opposite of each state determining the level of health care it can afford.

    And yes, it’s the Lindsay Graham/John McCain plan and yes, they might sucker the GOP into adopting it. I still hate it.

  16. Republicans own the House, Senate and WH. What could go wrong? I believe the only thing dividing them are those who acknowledge the laws of arithmetic and those who do not.

  17. Kel, typical of you to misremember and be confused.

    Have you considered offering up a Kel — preferred solution that would pass muster with the GOP?

    I believe Woolly hit on it in his comment. It is closer to the truth to say that Republicans negligently forgot to formulate an acceptable replacement in all their years of voting to repeal Obamacare. But that makes it sound like they could come up with an acceptable replacement if they tried hard enough. They cannot.

  18. The ACA is an obvious Cloward and Piven strategy. Rube Goldberg complexity implosion machine + gets tons dependent on Medicaid.


  19. “Block grants are/were the GOP proposal.”

    Medicaid is a central planning / graft mess. Now there are a ton of non-poor able bodied on it. I think block grants gives some states the ability to control it more.

  20. The debt went from 10 trillion to 20 trillion while the GDP stayed at a constant 2%. nine years.

    33% lower than what was normal the last oh, say 100 years.

    More central planning. Sure. That will work.

  21. Why did Murkowski and Collins go corporatist – socialist?

    Cloward and Piven.

    The ACA is working as planned.

  22. I think you are saying that as the composition of the population gets older, you don’t have enough GDP to fund the programs that people will expect to have. The economy no longer has capacity to support another expensive entitlement program.

    We can’t grow your way out of a problem, and we’re potentially going to have to make difficult decisions between fostering family formation and care of the elderly. My generation — the tail end of the Baby Boom — will be the most affected.

  23. Or we could create incentives that would encourage millions of people who have left the work force to get off welfare and rejoin the economy.

    Granted, I think a day of reckoning is coming soon regarding entitlements, especially Socialist Insecurity and Medicare, and the sooner we reckon the better, but intentionally screwing ourselves out of 1-3% more economic growth per year sure ain’t helpin’.

  24. They never reserved for Medicare while Medicare, employment based insurance, and Medicaid destroyed the efficiency of the system.

    Who will suffer?

    Who caused it?

    Democracy is crap.

  25. You were forced into Medicare and you were forced to pay FICA taxes.


    Was it worth it?

  26. The notion that the US will continue to bring increased prosperity year after year, that the government can always do more — these are ending, unless we see an unexpected pick up in productivity growth. We are looking at $1 trillion deficits as far as the eye can see, and we can’t grow our way out of them very easily. And we’re looking to launch a major entitlement program into this context.

  27. Emery, nice talking points, but let’s look at reality here. The labor force participation rate from ~ 1990 to 2007 is about 66%. Today, it’s about 63%, which means that if the ~8 million people who have left, or have never joined, the labor force can be induced to join at even half the average wage, we get an instant bump of 2.5% in GDP.

    And if we want to talk about a better standard of living, then we re-arrange our regulatory/welfare/tax system so families don’t need two incomes to make ends meet–and a huge portion of daycare, fast food, and other low paying jobs simply disappear. The rise in labor force participation between the 1960s and 1990s is largely due to that. If you want to play with it yourself….


  28. “And if we want to talk about a better standard of living, then we re-arrange our regulatory/welfare/tax system so families don’t need two incomes to make ends meet–“

    This is the way to think about it. The cost of living is the problem. The Ruling Class, Wall Street, and government would have to give up tons of power to fix it.

    This is all covered in David Stockman’s book.

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