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McCain to Prez: How do you like me Now?

Uploaded: Jul 28, 2017

Back in a happier time – before the days of locker rooms and anatomically questionable metaphors, the candidate Mr. Trump followed-up a now-tepid insult to Senator John McCain by saying “I prefer guys who didn’t get captured, okay?”

Well, Mr. Trump, he evaded capture last night – how do you like him now?

In dramatic fashion, Mr. McCain put a final stake through the vampire's heart of the GOP’s ObamaCare horror show. His deciding vote culminated 6 months of historically zealous, sloppy, secretive, sexist and futile-from-the-outset attempts by Republicans to translate their Congressional majorities into law. Law that was supported by about 17% of the people they purport to represent (but most of the money).

The GOP Healthcare Follies went something like this:

Act 1, Scene 1. House: oops.

Act 1, Scene 2. House: we know that this bill is an organic remnant that nobody wants, and that it hurts 20 million Americans - but surely, the Senate will fix it, so here you go!

Act 2, Scene 1. Senate: we know this bill’s going to be a stinker, so we’ll craft it in a secret treehouse, then rush it through before anybody knows what they’re voting on.

Act 2, Scene 2. Senate: Oops.

Act 2, Scene 3. Okay then, we’ll make it worse, then try again – and if that doesn’t work, we’ll make it much worse, and add a dose of chaos – and if That doesn’t work, we will pass a bill that is an incomprehensible shell of an organic remnant that nobody wants, and that hurts 15 million Americans, but surely, the Conference will fix it.

Act 3: Senators Murkowski, Collins and McCain (and 48 Dems): Not so fast.

The End, for now. This serial comedy may not have a long run in prime time.

I must admit that I sold Sen. McCain short after he had earlier voted ‘yes’ to bring the GOP bills to the floor, and then excoriated his colleagues about not working together to compromise and govern on behalf of We, the People. Those words seemed empty after he cast the deciding vote to continue the partisan travesty described above. Had he voted ‘no’ then, we’d have ended up right where we are now, but sooner.

Instead, he gambled on the steadfastness of Senators Collins and Murkowski (for once he was right about an Alaskan!), and took this wretched melodrama down in a most climactic fashion – after all other options had been rejected. It was per-fect, and I am sorry to have doubted him.

So, what now? In those happier, saner times, the Parties would drop back and begin to craft legislation that stabilizes the insurance markets, and hopefully even completes the expansion of Medicaid to the recalcitrant states that have so far refused to assist their citizens. Despite a rough start and a seven-year propaganda campaign that has forecast implosion perpetually just around the corner, the ACA has worked to expand coverage and /gasp/ improve the lives of “our friends, our families – people worth fighting for” (in the words of NV GOP Gov. Sandoval).

ObamaCare’s premiums escalation problems and rural gaps have been caused primarily by political uncertainty fomented by those who wish it ill. Insurance markets are built on probabilities – when there are large ‘unknowns’ in those analyses, monetary buffers get built-in in advance. Those uncertainties can be resolved politically, and well might be in those earlier eras.

Will the Congress take heed of Mr. McCain’s stirring words? Stay tuned. In the meantime, take a moment to lift a glass to a true statesman of several eras – he's an heroic warrior, of several eras, who deserves every American’s continued respect and admiration for once again elevating principle over cynical ideology and worse, in the heat of battle.
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Posted by Cholo, a resident of Livermore,
on Jul 28, 2017 at 3:10 pm

I salute Senator Murkowski, Senator Collins, and Senator McCain...VIVA!

It's inspiring to know that Senator McCain voted in support of fellow Americans who elected him to office. With a Dx of brain cancer Senator McCain found the courage to stand up for fellow working Americans. I am in awe and I am grateful.


Posted by Cholo, a resident of Livermore,
on Jul 28, 2017 at 3:17 pm

Two Women Held Their Own: Web Link

Posted by Cholo, a resident of Livermore,
on Jul 28, 2017 at 3:23 pm

Tom, I just couldn't resist posting this video of Senator McCain:

Web Link

It's inspiring and helpful to remember such an American HERO!

I won't post anymore.

Posted by American, a resident of Danville,
on Jul 28, 2017 at 4:18 pm

Obamacare premium escalation problems have primarily been caused by those who wish it ill.

What evidence do you have to support this? Why must you blame every Democrat failure in policy on the Republicans? Isn't is more likely the sky rocketing insurance premiums( over 100% in Arizona) is due to failure to allow interstate competition, which leads to less competion and less carriers to underwrite the risks? Isn't it true Obama knew this would lead to less carriers and ultimately a single payer system he really preferred anyway? Blaming the Republicans for the escalating premiums in Obamacare is like blaming the Democrats for Watergate. But unfortunately some liberals can never accept failure and must always blame others for their failures. Like Hillary refusing to accept she ran a horrible campaign, did not go to Wisconsin, and instead blames the Russians for her loss.

The only thing we agree on is John McCain is a hero who has always put country over politics and party. While I do not always agree with his votes, I never dispute his character or independence from politics.

Can you name one Democrat in the last 9 years who has put country first over party in supporting a law his or her party opposed? Sadly I can not think of one- loyalty to Nancy Pelosi has taken priority over loyalty to country. Trump is not the only reason are country is so divided. John Glenn, Richard Gephard, Richard Daley-we use to have Democrats who could work with Republicans and cross party line to compromise to put country first. Sadly not anymore.

Posted by anony, a resident of California Reflections,
on Jul 28, 2017 at 4:38 pm

Web Link

Posted by anony, a resident of California Reflections,
on Jul 28, 2017 at 4:51 pm

Web Link

Posted by April, a resident of Carlton Oaks,
on Jul 28, 2017 at 5:02 pm

Web Link

Posted by rob mould, a resident of Apperson Ridge,
on Jul 28, 2017 at 6:50 pm

"ObamaCare's premiums escalation problems and rural gaps have been caused primarily by political uncertainty fomented by those who wish it ill. "

Tom, you'll write damn near anything apparently. Anyone who believes the above statement is a liar, or is delusional and doesn't understand the most basic of economic principles.

Posted by Scott Hale, a resident of San Ramon,
on Jul 29, 2017 at 6:58 am

Scott Hale is a registered user.

It's too bad more of the GOP don't have balls like are children wanting daddy's love. good grief.

Posted by rob mould, a resident of Apperson Ridge,
on Jul 29, 2017 at 7:44 am

Voted for a repeal in 2015

Campaigned for a repeal in 2016

Let's not confuse courage with politics and grandstanding

However, I do concede he has been "courageous" in the rush to push our fine service people into disastrous wars around the globe.

Posted by Tom Cushing, a resident of Alamo,
on Jul 29, 2017 at 8:56 am

Hi rob: I've been called worse hereabouts, which isn't terribly on-point, but okay. Much of what I know about the ACA's problems comes from Paul Krugman - you may disagree, but the Nobel Prize committee concluded that HE knew a thing-or-two about economics. Here's one such post - there are many more you can find on your own, if so inclined: Web Link

The rural coverage problem might respond to interstate competition, which seems like a pretty good idea. It IS important to keep that matter in perspective: we're talking about 35,000 total people with no ACA carrier available to them, and some 3 million with one carrier. Web Link By comparison, the GOP plans would've ousted upwards of 20 million Americans from any coverage, at all. Now, even one American without coverage is one too many, but you may agree that 35,000 is considerably less than 20,000,000.

As we saw with the 'keep your doctor' kerfuffle, opponents count up from zero when criticizing the ACA, and down from 330 million on their own bills. Or they just count the money - $billions in tax breaks for the beleaguered 1%.

Posted by Sam, a resident of Oak Hill,
on Jul 29, 2017 at 9:21 am

Healthcare costs spiraling out of control at a pace exceeding inflation and the many Americans who don't have healthcare insurance have been longstanding problems. They were problems back in the days of the GW Bush administration when Republicans had control of the White House, Senate, and House of Representatives for six years. What did Republicans do to address the problems of healthcare in this country? NOTHING. So, finally, along comes Obama and he gets the job done. Obamacare isn't perfect but it's something and millions of Americans who didn't have healthcare insurance before now have it. Republicans gripe. Years and years and years of griping and saying that Obamacare needs to be repealed and replaced by something better. Then along comes Trump: "Obamacare is going to be repealed and replaced with something much less expensive that works much better.". Wow, sounds great! So, finally, Republicans get their chance again to show what they can do. Republicans now control the White House, Senate, and House of Representatives again. So here we are. Do Republicans have any detailed plan about what to replace Obamacare with? Uh, oh. No they don't. No plan, no clue. After all the years and years and years of griping, it appears that all those Republicans overlooked the fact that they would actually have to come up with a real alternative plan. What are Republicans now doing about healthcare?: NOTHING (yet again). All talk, no action.

Posted by Tom Cushing, a resident of Alamo,
on Jul 29, 2017 at 9:50 am

Here's a pretty good overview of the seven-year ache: Web Link

"The closing argument was a curious one: Vote yes, Republican leaders told the holdouts in their conference. We promise it will never become law.

After seven years of railing against the evils of the Affordable Care Act, the party had winnowed its hopes of dismantling it down to a menu of options to appease recalcitrant lawmakers �" with no more pretenses of lofty policy making, only a realpolitik plea to keep the legislation churning through the Capitol by voting to advance something, anything.

They ended up with nothing."

And kudos to the less sung heroes of this drama: Web Link

"... [Mr. Trump] really, really wanted a bill to sign. Maybe he was too distracted by the subtle plotting against Reince Priebus to focus. Otherwise, he's just the worst lobbyist in history.

And he underestimated two Senate Republicans, Susan Collins and Lisa Murkowski. John McCain's “no" vote was the high point of the drama, but Collins and Murkowski were the fierce, consistent forces of resistance that gave McCain his opportunity. ..."

Posted by RozRogoff2, a resident of San Ramon,
on Jul 29, 2017 at 8:37 pm

RozRogoff2 is a registered user.

You will notice that the two women Senators are from states very close to Canada! Yes Canadian humanity slipped over the borders of Maine and Alaska to influence their votes.

Actually I thought Susan Collins would vote against the repeal. Maine, like California, is a bifurcated state with the coastal portions mostly liberal and the inland portions more conservative. Of course the inland portions of Maine are mostly covered in trees which don't vote.


Posted by Resident, a resident of Laguna Oaks,
on Jul 30, 2017 at 8:44 am

"The growth of the Internet will slow drastically, as the flaw in 'Metcalfe's law'-which states that the number of potential connections in a network is proportional to the square of the number of participants-becomes apparent: most people have nothing to say to each other! By 2005 or so, it will become clear that the Internet's impact on the economy has been no greater than the fax machine's." - Paul Krugman

This is just 1 of the numerous dumb quotes and predictions Paul Krugman has made.

He won a prize, once.

If you've followed his career in writing you'd know that he has been consistently wrong in lots of areas of economics. I could paste them here but the list is too extensive.

Your praise for him is only equal to your disdain for the Kochs who, interesting enough, have done far greater things for the public than that fool Paul Krugman ever has.

That you don't recognize this is very telling.

Posted by Tom Cushing, a resident of Alamo,
on Jul 30, 2017 at 10:31 am

Readers may notice that the attacks here are ad hominem - first me, and now nobel laureate(!) Krugman (who "won a prize, once") as a source (I'll keep that company, any day). Cherry-pick a quote and try in vain to discredit an eminently distinguished career, because you're some guy on the internet. If you really followed Krugman, you'd know that the statement about his batting average is hogwash. But you don't. Nice try, but understanding requires actual reading, and what fun is that?

Now, in case anyone is actually interested in the issues, rather than pretending that dismissive character assassination equals argument, here's another, longer article that details more of the sustained attack on the ACA since its inception: Web Link

Posted by Cholo, a resident of Livermore,
on Jul 30, 2017 at 11:07 am

Maybe "Resident" doesn't appreciate JEWISH INTELLECTUALS?

Web Link

Posted by Cholo, a resident of Livermore,
on Jul 30, 2017 at 4:08 pm

Is this individual a bad bad oldie but bad girl and a resident?

Web Link

Posted by Sam, a resident of Oak Hill,
on Jul 30, 2017 at 5:00 pm

OK, hate to get diverted and wandering off-topic by the old Paul Krugman quote, but I did some googling and found that it's a widely circulated quote often used to try to discredit him, and now think that it's educational to shine some light on the background of that quote. Here's a Business Insider article that goes into an examination of that quote:

"As a way to discredit his thoughts on Bitcoin everyone is passing around that old quote about the Internet. The implication is See! He was wrong once! Thereforehence, he is a bozo and you shouldn't listen to him!"

"We emailed Krugman for a comment on the quote and here's his explanation:"

"Well, two things."

"First, look at the whole piece. It was a thing for the Times magazine's 100th anniversary, written as if by someone looking back from 2098, so the point was to be fun and provocative, not to engage in careful forecasting; I mean, there are lines in there about St. Petersburg having more skyscrapers than New York, which was not a prediction, just a thought-provoker."

"But the main point is that I don't claim any special expertise in technology -- I almost never make technological forecasts, and the only reason there was stuff like that in the 98 piece was because the assignment required that I do that sort of thing. The issues about Bitcoin, however, are not technological! Everyone agrees that it's technically very sweet. But does it work as money? That's a very different kind of question."

Business Insider: Web Link


So, at least according to Paul Krugman, it appears that the quote in question has been taken out of context, a context in which people were brainstorming with wild and provocative ideas.

Posted by Michael Austin, a resident of Pleasanton Meadows,
on Jul 30, 2017 at 6:56 pm

Michael Austin is a registered user.

With discussion absent.
This blog is overtaken by trolls and used as their cut and paste dump location!

Posted by Sam, a resident of Oak Hill,
on Jul 31, 2017 at 7:29 am

Republicans now want to just concede defeat for now and move onto other things like tax reform. But not Trump! He's no "quitter". Like a child having a tantrum, he'll knock over the chess set if he doesn't win. Now urging elimination of the 60 vote requirement to break legislative filibusters in the Senate. Also, talking about eliminating government payments to insurance companies to lower costs to lower income Obamacare policyholders. Will be interesting. Lots of those low income policyholders who voted for Trump in swing states may be in for a surprise.

Posted by sue Thayer, a resident of Birdland,
on Jul 31, 2017 at 8:35 am

Checkers set, Sam. Chess requires strategy.

Posted by Cholo, a resident of Livermore,
on Jul 31, 2017 at 4:53 pm

How come m. austin in so upset?'ll sleep better.

I recommend por chops and ray-sins for a tweety sleep!

i rest my case...just tryin to hep out.

Posted by Adam009, a resident of Diablo,
on Oct 10, 2017 at 10:47 am

Adam009 is a registered user.

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