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Conservatives supporting Graham-Cassidy are pretending it’s not Obamacarelite

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Graham Cassidy Obamacarelite

Graham-Cassidy is Obamacarelite. Period. It fails to address the two biggest issues with Obamacare… which happen to be the two biggest issues raised by conservative Republicans over the past seven years. First, it does NOT remove the federal government’s hands from a healthcare industry in which it does not belong. Second, it does NOT take steps to reducing premiums or health care costs for average American households.

On the first issue, some would point to the block grants, state waivers, and the removal of individual and employer mandates as examples of how this is a step towards removing the federal government from healthcare. I’ll address each of these individually, but let’s look at the obvious problem with that argument. This bill isn’t designed to be a “step.” This is it. This is what the GOP wants the healthcare system to look like indefinitely. If you have a knife in your back, pulling it out a little bit doesn’t mean you no longer have a knife in your back.

Let’s look at the three major components:

  1. Block Grants: Paul Ryan and Lindsey Graham are screaming, “yay federalism!” Here’s the problem. Block grants coming from the federal government instead of going towards Medicaid expansion doesn’t change a thing. It’s still the federal government taking our money and giving it to insurance companies. Adding the states as a middle man does nothing to change that fact. It gives the states more control on how the money is distributed, but it doesn’t reduce the distribution by a penny. On paper, they’ll come up with math that shows cost reductions for DC. Long-term, it will actually increase the expenditures as grants are reconciled from projections to reality.
  2. State Waivers: This is a misdirection. It won’t be used in a significant way by any states. Why? The block grants. It would be political suicide for any state legislature to say they’re going to accept less money from DC so they can put everything on the backs of the citizens in their state. Some states will waive some portions, but again, it will not be significant. This is just a magic flag conservatives can wave around to justify voting for the bill.
  3. Removing Mandates: Good. No problem with this. In fact, I love it. Outside of defunding Planned Parenthood, this is my favorite part of the bill.

As for the second issue – not reducing premiums – this will actually accelerate the rising costs of healthcare, premiums, and deductibles. In other words, when Republicans vowed to reduce your costs of healthcare, they weren’t serious… at least not if they pass this bill. There are many things they could do to reduce costs if they would simply repeal Obamacare and start taking free-market steps. Open up interstate competition. Incentivize HSAs. Encourage innovation and competition in the healthcare industry in general. They have the power and the mandate to make healthcare more affordable for average American households and they simply refuse to do it.

The most common argument you’ll hear is that it’s not perfect but it’s better than Obamacare. I’m okay with better as long as it’s TRULY better, but since this doesn’t address the two biggest flaws of Obamacare, it’s only incrementally better. Pouring sugar on a rotten piece of peach cobbler might make it easier to eat, but you’re still eating rotten food nonetheless. It will still make you sick. The Republicans have control of the House, Senate, and White House. They have absolutely, positively zero excuses for not putting forth a bill that actually addresses the fundamental flaws of Obamacare.

One final note: both Obamacare and Obamacarelite are stepping stones to single-payer. Obamacare’s failures are the reason that “Medicare for All” is gaining steam. Obamacarelite suffers from the same problems. It’s a very tiny band-aid that will not stop the bleeding, so when it’s demonstrated as not being able to solve the problems of Obamacare, the cries for single-payer will grow louder. If this bill passes, watch for major GOP losses in 2018 and 2020 followed by a push for single-payer in 2021.

I’ll wrap up in a moment, but first let’s look at what’s being said about it from around the web:

Perspectives

New GOP ObamaCare repeal bill gains momentum | Peter Sullivan, The Hill

http://thehill.com/policy/healthcare/351198-new-gop-obamacare-repeal-bill-gains-momentumDemocrats argue the block grants would be too small and would lead to cuts to Medicaid and other health spending. The liberal Center on Budget and Policy Priorities found the bill would on average lead to a 17 percent cut in spending compared to ObamaCare in 2026.

Lindsey Graham: Obamacare overhaul is ‘Bernie Sanders’ worst nightmare’

http://www.washingtonexaminer.com/lindsey-graham-obamacare-overhaul-is-bernie-sanders-worst-nightmare/article/2634728Cassidy has said the bill is only a vote or two shy of the support it needs to pass. In July, Senate Republicans failed to pass a bill that would have narrowly repealed portions of Obamacare. All Democrats voted against it, as did GOP Sens. Susan Collins of Maine and Lisa Murkowski of Alaska; John McCain, R-Ariz., dealt the fatal blow to the legislation and called for public hearings to discuss ways to improve the healthcare system.

Dems demand full CBO analysis of Obamacare repeal plan | Heather Caygle, Politico

http://www.politico.com/story/2017/09/18/obamacare-repeal-lindsey-graham-bill-cassidy-cbo-242841Democratic congressional leaders are demanding a full budget analysis of the latest Republican effort to repeal Obamacare, a move that threatens to stall the legislation ahead of a critical Sept. 30 deadline.

Ron Johnson schedules hearing on health care block grants – Washington Times

http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2017/sep/18/johnson-schedules-hearing-health-care-block-grants/Mr. Johnson, chairman of the Homeland Security and Government Affairs Committee, and his cosponsors say the bill known as “Graham-Cassidy” is Congress’s best chance to devolve power from Washington to governors by replacing the 2010 Affordable Care Act with block grants to the states.

How Graham-Cassidy redistributes federal money – Axios

https://www.axios.com/how-graham-cassidy-redistributes-federal-money-2486664997.htmlThere’s a lot of skepticism in Washington over whether the latest Affordable Care Act repeal bill, proposed by Sens. Lindsey Graham and Bill Cassidy, can pass. One of the many reasons is that a lot of Republican senators’ states — particularly those that expanded Medicaid — would lose a lot of money.

What Single-Payer Looks Like: Smokers and Obese Banned from Surgery at British Govt Hospital Thanks to Budget

http://legalinsurrection.com/2017/09/what-single-payer-looks-like-smokers-and-obese-banned-from-surgery-at-british-govt-hospital-thanks-to-budget/In Sanders’ fantasy world, single-payer system is the only cure for what ails the American healthcare system. Most of his Democratic Senate colleagues agree. They were wrong about Obamacare and what it would fix and they’re wrong single-payer.

Splintered: Single-Payer Litmus Test Has Cut The Democratic Party In Two – Matt Vespa

https://townhall.com/tipsheet/mattvespa/2017/09/18/splintered-singlepayer-litmus-test-has-cut-democrats-right-down-the-middle-n2381168Like it or not, the Democratic Party is not a national one. It’s been decimated during and after the Obama era, with 1,000 fewer Democrats in office than there were in 2008-09. The GOP control Congress, the White House, 69/99 state legislatures, and two-thirds of the governorships. The Republicans are at the apex of their power.

Rand Paul is unlikely to support the Graham-Cassidy measure – Washington Times

http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2017/sep/18/rand-paul-is-unlikely-to-support-the-graham-cassid/“No consevative [sic] should vote for a rebranded trillion dollar spending program just because it adds some block grants,” Mr. Paul tweeted adding, “Keeping 90% of Obamacare is not ok and it’s not what we ran on. Conservatives should say no.”

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Final Thoughts

This is not the fulfillment of the promises the GOP made for the last seven years. This is a false repeal and replace model that’s nothing more than “tweak and rebrand.” Spread the word that this isn’t the bill it’s being sold as by Republicans. They’re counting on the vast majority of Americans not paying attention.

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Culture and Religion

The complete fraud that is socialism

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The complete fraud that is socialism

Once again we are witness to the age-old scam of socialism with Leftists making promises to attain power that can never be fulfilled.

Long before Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn’s Gulag Archipelago exposed the systematic oppression, torture, incarceration and deliberate mass murder that are the hallmarks of socialistic slavery. James A. Michener documented the 1956 Hungarian uprising against communism in his book ‘The Bridge at Andau’. While both are great literary works, ‘The Bridge at Andau’ laid bare the complete fraud that is the collectivist ideologies in creating a ‘Heaven on Earth’ or ‘worker’s paradise’ that never comes to fruition.

The selling of socialistic slavery to a new generation tends to follow a certain type of ‘progress’. Promises are made for all kinds of largess ranging from Free Healthcare, Free Housing, Free College, Free food to even Free income. All paid for with other people’s money. Never mind that It’s impossible to fulfill all of these wondrous asseverations. Appearances must be made to at least begin the process, so the ever-present task of wealth redistribution begins at the point of a gun.

This is also why the Socialist-Left obsesses over gun confiscation and the suppression of free speech. It is imperative for the Leftists to disarm the people since they generally object to having their property stolen from them. However, we are getting ahead of ourselves, this is to document how this exploitation of the people has ‘progressed’ in other collectivist enclaves to better understand how this crime against the people is perpetrated.

Why do collectivist regimes always require secret police apparatus and the suppression of Liberty?

This question was detailed in The Bridge at Andau in the chapters on the ‘AVO man’. In which he discusses the secret police organisation of the Hungarian Communists, the AVO (Allamvedelmi Osztaly). He bluntly asked and answered the question:

Why must communism depend on such dregs of society?

No matter on what elevated plane communism begins its program of total dictatorship. it sooner or later runs into such economic and social problems that some strong-arm force is required to keep the civil population under control.

As is the case now as it was then, a nation’s Socialist-Left will promise just about anything to attain power over the people:

When communism is wooing the workers in Csepel, all kinds of exaggerated promises are made if they seem likely to awaken men’s aspirations and their cupidity. These promises are couched in such simple terms and such effective symbols that they become immediate goals of the revolution.

Review briefly what communist agitators had once promised the Hungarians who appear in this book: consumer goods such as they had never known before, increased wages. increased social benefits, shorter hours of work, improved education for everyone, a greater social freedom, and a government directly responsible to the working classes. Under communism such promises were never even remotely capable of attainment.

[Our Emphasis]
If all of that sounds eerily familiar, it’s because that’s part of a very old song and dance that has deceived many a generation into enslaving themselves under socialism. Consider this recent story from the Associated Press:

Democrats lurch left on top policies as 2020 primary begins

NEW YORK (AP) — Democratic presidential contender Julian Castro launched his campaign by pledging support for “Medicare for All,” free universal preschool, a large public investment in renewable energy and two years of free college for all Americans.
….

New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker, who is expected to launch his presidential campaign soon, has sponsored legislation to create a federal jobs guarantee program in several communities across America.

The pilot program… could ultimately transform the U.S. labor market by providing well-paid government employment with benefits for anyone who wants it.

[Our Emphasis]

As Margaret Thatcher so aptly surmised, eventually they will run out of other people’s money. In our case in the states, that is already the situation given the enormous debt and unfunded liabilities reaching into the stratosphere of trillions of dollars. Of course, this hasn’t deterred committed collectivists such as Democratic mayor Bill de Blasio who recently stated that ‘There’s plenty of money in the world… It’s just in the wrong hands!’ Never mind that it is morally wrong to steal the property of others or that once a society turns down the dead-end of socialism there will always be more people wanting more money from those who have it.

Wealth redistribution scams will always wreck the economy. A socialist regime that nationalizes the economy can never function better than one of economic Liberty. Soon enough everything breaks down, the people see through the lies and the government has to start breaking heads. Thus it is imperative that they have previously confiscated the people’s guns and made it illegal to defend themselves.

The Takeaway

Socialistic schemes always run contrary to basic human nature. Rewarding someone for not working will always result in less work. Conversely, punishing someone for working will also result in less work.

This basic logic of human nature seems to be lost on Leftists. But perhaps it is not. They have to know their schemes have never and will never work. And yet they still try to impose them on everyone else. Perhaps they know of the epic fraud they are continually perpetrating on society, but they don’t care. That will be the subject of our next installment.


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Culture and Religion

Two years of GOP control: Planned Parenthood performed most abortions since Obama’s first term

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Two years of GOP control Planned Parenthood performed most abortions since Obamas first term

Do you remember when the vast majority of Republicans running for election in 2016 were outraged by videos showing Planned Parenthood selling baby body parts for money? Those were good times. Most of them were using the #DefundPP hashtag on their Twitter accounts. They were aggressively and unambiguously proclaiming that if the GOP can retain control of the House and Senate and elect a President who won’t veto them, they’ll get Planned Parenthood defunded.

Two years after the election, they didn’t do as they promised. They didn’t even really try. Now, their failure is on clear display in an article by Emily Zanotti, Tweeted by our EIC:

That’s right. The results of GOP control of the House, Senate, and White House are that Planned Parenthood is still being funded by the federal government and were able to be even more prolific at taking the lives of preborn babies than they’ve been since President Obama’s first term.

As we’ve talked about before, defunding Planned Parenthood is not a path through which we will end or even reduce abortions. If anything, it will increase their own funding because their fundraising machine will use their defunding as a way to get much, much more money from their progressive supporters. But that’s unavoidable. We must defund them because our tax dollars should not be used in this manner, period.

Fighting abortion is not a political battle that can be won through defunding, but it does galvanize both sides to address the cultural and scientific components of the base. When that happens, I firmly believe we can move American society towards a dramatic reduction in the number of abortions that occur.

Campaign rhetoric will not stop Planned Parenthood. We need action. We must change the culture in a way that frowns upon abortion. Until then, defunding is important. It should have been important when the GOP had control.


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Democrats

So-called Red Flag laws: An unconstitutional solution to a non-existent problem

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So-called Red Flag laws An unconstitutional solution to a non-existent problem

As with most Leftist affronts to Liberty, unconstitutional gun confiscation SWATing or so-called ‘Red Flag’ laws are based on a lie. The usual contention is that these laws that eviscerate basic constitutional protections of due process are desperately needed because there are no other means to deal with people who are alleged to be a danger to themselves or others. Our previous article on the subject dealt with this outright falsehood. There are laws and procedures for involuntary civil commitments already on the books to handle these extreme situations. In the case of Florida and the Parkland mass murder, the “The Baker Act” was already in place, but the authorities failed to take action in time. Other states such as Colorado already have procedures in place for Mental Health Holds.

The existence of these laws have been ignored in the effort to ‘enhance’ the government’s ability to confiscate guns. Its just another case of the Left exploiting a tragedy to ‘Rahm’ through new laws to deprive the people of their means of self-defense.

Laws built on lies

Most articles on what is supposedly the urgent need for gun confiscation SWATing or ‘Red Flag’ laws will make vague allusions there are no other ways of handling these situations to the point of asserting that the government has never had the authority to deal with these situations.

State governments clearly have these abilities, but the existing laws protect the Constitutional rights of the accused without having the primary purpose of confiscating guns – an intolerable situation for the authoritarian Left that sees 120 million gun owners as a threat simply because they are gun owners.

Why violate one human right when several can be attacked at once?

Leftists seem to be in some perverse competition to see which one of them can conjure up new laws to attack Liberty in as many ways as possible. For them, it’s a more efficient form of tyranny with one law doing the work of several. What better way to suppress Liberty than to confiscate guns because of someone exercising their right of free speech while destroying due process protections?

The dangerous implications to the 1st Amendment

These laws will have devastating consequences for the natural right of free speech. It will only take one concerned person in the group of people who can initiate these actions to decide an innocent gun owner is guilty of ‘thoughtcrime’ to have their property confiscated. The odds are that the Left will also expand who can initiate these gun confiscation SWATings and streamline the process.

This will only serve to further stigmatize gun owners and suppress their right of free speech. Talk too much about the human right of self-defense and the law-abiding could experience a knock on the door at 5:00 AM with property confiscation conducted at gunpoint. One would then have a protracted legal battle on their hands to prove they are innocent after being treated as guilty with all manner of legal costs and red tape just to have their property returned.

The 2nd Amendment – the primary target

In their ongoing efforts to rid the nation of Liberty, the Left has decided that it should be illegal to defend oneself. Thus they have expended copious amounts of digital ink in demanding the death of the 2nd amendment and the confiscation of guns. They are perfectly willing to do this one innocent gun owner at a time if they have to. Never mind that the common sense human right of self-defense is the bedrock of the Bill or Rights. They have no use for the limitations of their power afforded by the Constitution, much less the Liberty conserving provisions of the Bill of Rights.

But wait, there’s more – The 4th and 5th amendments also on the chopping block

These laws turn the presumption of innocence on its head, forcing the victim of one of these gun confiscation raids to have to prove they aren’t guilty of thoughtcrime before they can get their property returned. Not to mention the ‘ex parte’ nature of these proceedings depriving innocent of the critical right of due process and the right to face one’s accuser before these confiscations take place. Lastly, there is the takings clause applicable to the private property being taken for public use since not many innocent gun owners will have the means for a protracted legal battle with the government, resulting in the loss of private property.

Why the focus on firearms?-

The existing laws for Involuntary Civil Commitment are not only superior in protecting everyone’s civil rights. They also serve to keep people from harm by other means. The unconstitutional practice of gun confiscation SWATing only addresses the issue of guns, leaving the supposed danger to society free to use alternative methods to cause harm.

If safety is the point of the so-called ‘Red Flag’ or ‘ERPO’ laws, then why aren’t their proponents concerned about this issue? If someone has their guns taken away suddenly by unconstitutional means, what’s to stop them from using explosives – flour, etc.- from carrying out their deadly deeds? Suppose an alleged ‘danger to society’ no longer has their guns, but still has a motorized vehicle or the ability to make edged weaponry. What about that circumstance?

Well, if it were really the case in that these people are concerned about other people’s welfare to the point of having them committed, they would have to follow the rule of law and afford the target their right of due process, etc. They wouldn’t be able to take someone’s means of self-defense just on the word of some other aggrieved party. It wouldn’t serve their desire for gun confiscation and gun confiscation alone, so it has no usefulness for them.

Things aren’t going according to plan for the Liberty Grabber Left

The progression for the Left has always been one of control, registration and then confiscation. They used to think that it was just a matter of time before Intergalactic Background Checks would be put in place, then registration would be required – both of which would do nothing to keep people safe or ‘cut down on the carnage’. It was all supposed to happen as it did in the UK and Australia. Intergalactic Background Checks, registration, then confiscation.

But that isn’t happening, despite the baseless polling to the contrary, everyone isn’t clamoring to have the government control their private property. Most of the Pro-Liberty see the danger in this control, with it leading to registration, followed by confiscation. Most on both sides have already admitted that Intergalactic Background Checks don’t work, that the dirty little secret being that these have no other purpose than as a stepping stones to confiscation.

The Takeaway

As others have indicated, Leftists aren’t anti-gun, they are anti-Liberty. They love to see them in the hands of the ‘politically correct’, but cannot deal with them in the hands of the right people.

Leftists desperately want to deprive the Pro-Liberty Right of their guns. These firearms represent a vitally important and final check on unlimited governmental power. It’s the primary bulwark against them attaining government power to attain their wondrous utopia they desire. They are so desperate to remove it that they will confiscate them one innocent person at a time, without a care for its effects on safety or Liberty.


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