take your answer off the air...

  • HorsesAss.Org: the straight poop on WA politics & the press
    progressive brilliance from the guy who pointed out Tim Eyman's nascent horse's-assedness
  • Talker's Magazine
    The quirky talk radio trade mag. Check the Talk Radio Research Project- it's not very scientific, but places on the top 15 talkers list (scroll down to Talk Radio Audiences By Size)) are as hotly contested as Emmys (and mean just about as much).
  • The Advocate
    No, not THAT Advocate... it's the Northwest Progressive Institute's Official Blog.
  • Media Matters
    Documentation of right-wing media in video, audio and text.
  • Orcinus
    home of David Neiwert, freelance investigative journalist and author who writes extensively about far-right hate groups
  • Hominid Views
    "People, politics, science, and whatnot" Darryl is a statistician who fights imperialism with empiricism, gives good links and wry commentary.
  • Jesus' General
    An 11 on the Manly Scale of Absolute Gender, a 12 on the Heavenly Scale of the 10 Commandments and a 6 on the earthly scale of the Immaculately Groomed.
  • Howie in Seattle
    Howie Martin is the Abe Linkin' of progressive Seattle.
  • Streaming Radio Guide
    Hellishly long (5795!) list of radio streaming, steaming on the Internets.
  • The Naked Loon
    News satire -- The Onion in the Seattle petunia patch.
  • Irrational Public Radio
    "informs, challenges, soothes and/or berates, and does so with a pleasing vocal cadence and unmatched enunciation. When you listen to IPR, integrity washes over you like lava, with the pleasing familiarity of a medium-roast coffee and a sensible muffin."
  • The Maddow Blog
    Here's the hyper-interactive La Raych of MSNBC. daily show-vids, freakishly geeky research, and classy graphics.
  • Northwest Broadcasters
    The AM, FM, TV and digital broadcasters of Northwest Washington, USA and Southwest British Columbia, Canada. From Kelso, WA to the northern tip of Vancouver Island, BC - call letters, formats, slogans, networks, technical data, and transmitter maps. Plus "recent" news.
  • News Corpse
    The Internet's chronicle of media decay.
  • The Moderate Voice
    The voice of reason in the age of Obama, and the politics of the far-middle.
  • News Hounds
    Dogged dogging of Fox News by a team who seems to watch every minute of the cable channel so you don't have to.
  • HistoryLink
    Fun to read and free encyclopedia of Washington State history. Founded by the late Walt Crowley, it's an indispensable tool and entertainment source for history wonks and surfers alike.

right-wing blogs we like

  • The Reagan Wing
    Hearin lies the real heart of Washington State Republicans. Doug Parris runs this red-meat social conservative group site which bars no holds when it comes to saying who they are and who they're not; what they believe and what they don't; who their friends are and where the rest of the Republicans can go. Well-written, and flaming.
  • Orbusmax
    inexhaustible Drudgery of NW conservative news
  • The Radio Equalizer
    prolific former Seattle KVI, KIRO talk host speaks authoritatively about radio.
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« CNN, FOX blew the breaking news | Main | O'Day comes through surgery; tumor benign »

June 28, 2012



How many Canadians will trade?


Well, unsure won’t be an issue when the new health care system is enacted. And Mike D’s question can’t be ignored.


Haha. Oh yes it can. Just watch them.


Wrong. Significant numbers of Canadians are not seeking health care in the US.

Where do you get this stuff?

Posted by: Mike D | June 29, 2012 at 09:18 PM

First, you misinterpreted what I said. For complex surgeries where there is a long waiting time, a large number of Canadians come to the US, but that number may be decreasing recently.

Another factor that no one has mentioned is that the population of Canada is less than 1/10 of the USA, so the bureaucracy is less and their system would not work well here because of the different in sizes and layer upon layer of bureaucracy here. If you can't see that, your lack of discernment is breathtaking. Sparky's piece was ying and this is yang.

Here's where I get this stuff, Mr. Mike. There is a kernel of truth in each differing viewpoint


Uhhh, complex surgeries? Doink!


Doink...Is that all you've got, BR ? Back to the here and now.

"This week, opponents outnumber supporters by 55-38 (ABC News) or 49-39 (Fox News) — dreadful numbers for legislation that has already passed and that one party is vowing to repeal."

(from the NY Post)
John Podhoretz
For those who loathe ObamaCare, for months the Supreme Court has loomed as the deus ex machina — the god who appeared at the end of an ancient Greek drama in a contraption rigged to descend from above to resolve all the action in an inarguably divine way. The high court would descend, declare the Affordable Care Act unconstitutional in whole or in part, and save the country from disaster.

Well, it didn’t turn out that way, and it only goes to show once again that one should not look to false gods for salvation. That message may prove as true for liberals and President Obama as it did for conservatives yesterday. Now Roberts did it, he reawakened the Tea Party who will campaign for the repeal of Owebama's pernicious health care scheme, which quite a few more despise than like as his signature legislation..

(From the NY Post)
The outrage hasn’t gone away: A Tea Party-inspired demonstrator outside the Supreme Court yesterday; she’ll be voting come Election Day.

Boy, talk about a false god! Like many people who read yesterday’s decision, I will go to my grave unable to reconcile the plain fact that on page 15 Chief Justice John Roberts says the bill’s mandate to buy health insurance isn’t a tax — only to say on page 35 that it is a tax.

In a beautiful turn of phrase, the four dissenting justices said Roberts’ contortion on this matter “carries verbal wizardry too far, deep into the forbidden land of the sophists.”

Roberts’ grotesque offense against elementary logic is so bald-faced, I’m almost tempted to believe he left it there on purpose, either out of perversity or as a not-so-hidden message that he had ulterior motives for upholding the constitutionality of ObamaCare.

He did get the four liberal justices to agree to the first serious limit on the power the court has assigned to the Constitution’s Commerce Clause in 75 years. And he basically gutted the bill’s ability to force states to enlarge the size of the Medicaid entitlement.

But the act stands, and this is the bitter pill conservatives have had to swallow. Liberals had their day in court and prevailed; the taste of victory must be sweet indeed.

But Roberts had a not-so-veiled warning for them, too: “The court does not express any opinion on the wisdom of the Affordable Care Act. . . Under the Constitution, that judgment is reserved to the people.”

And therein lies the danger for President Obama. For while it can be said “the people” acted when their representatives passed the law and the president signed it into law, “the people” have issued their judgment on ObamaCare both before and after its passage in ways that suggest the president’s victory may be Pyrrhic.

"Forget what gleeful pundits are saying about how the court’s ruling is a game changer that will suddenly make ObamaCare popular. The president hardly ever mentions this signature piece of legislation, and for good reason. Even yesterday, in welcoming the court’s decision, he spoke for a mere seven minutes, then hastened away.

I’m not even talking about the polls, which have shown a consistent majority in opposition to expanding federal control of health care.

Source: http://www.nypost.com/p/news/opinion/opedcolumnists/it_on_to_november_6i8ftulV9H2tLrx4RojozO#ixzz1zFnKwjAM


From now on, Obamacare shall be known as the Healthcare redistribution tax. That's exactly what it is.

Puget Sound Blathers

First we get complaints of being censored and threats to leave.
Where's this website you're starting up?

Puget Sound Blathers

good news with his Obamacare victory -and yes I fully acknowledge it was- and the Euro debt settlement which sent our stock markets up significantly.

"June 29: Obama Rises to 67.8 Percent
President Obama, who got good news in Thursday’s health care ruling, received more overnight on Friday when European leaders agreed to terms on a bank bailout. That sent the S.&P. 500 up by 2.5 percent on the hopes that this will reduce some of the downside risk in the economy.

Since the stock market is one of the economic variables the model considers, Mr. Obama’s probability of winning the Electoral College rose with the European news, to 67.8 percent, his highest figure since we began publishing the model this month.

The government also released data on personal income on Friday, another economic indicator the model uses. It rose by 0.2 percent in May, somewhat stronger than in most previous months and slightly beating market expectations. Still, personal income growth has been extremely sluggish for most of Mr. Obama’s term and remains the most pessimistic of the economic indicators the model uses.

The flow of polling has been comparatively strong for Mr. Obama of late, with leads in most battleground states in surveys published this week and national polls moving toward him, though some of this probably reflects statistical noise.

It is much too soon to tell what, if any, direct effect the health care ruling will have on Mr. Obama’s polling numbers; the large majority of polls used by the model were conducted before it was announced."

Mike D

"Here's where I get this stuff, Mr. Mike. There is a kernel of truth in each differing viewpoint

Posted by: KS | June 29, 2012 at 10:48 PM"

David Gratzer (the author of that article) is a fellow at the Koch-funded Manhattan Institute, a rightwing corporate think tank.

Here's a video of Dennis Kucinich tearing him a new one:



Did he have anything to say about his article ? Not that I can tell.

Let's hear Gratzer rebut Kucinich and tear him a new one about his wrongheaded views. Kucinich is correct about our imperialist tendencies, but on the wrong side about the role of Government. To him fairness means redistribution - that sucks !

What happened to an honest debate ? No wonder our country is circling the drain...


I heard the video and read the article and contrary to my last email - he made the point that Canada has fewer uninsured and the many Canadians that get significant surgeries here are reimbursed by Canada,

Those were only two of the facts that were pointed out by Kucinich that were contrary to the op-ed by Gratzer, but I don't buy his rebuttal. Not really an honest debate and if Mr. Gratzer was better prepared he would have made his case stronger. I'd like to see the actual facts and compare against what these two said to make it "fair and balanced".

What I will buy is that Canadian healthcare - single payer is functioning better than Obamacare ever would. Why ? Because it is cobbled piece of legalese verbal vomit that encompasses 2700 + pages and raises taxes substantially for the middle class and upper class starting next year - unless Obama is defeated.

If it would have been single payer, it would have cost less - but there would be more rationing than with a free market system. Politically, it would have been impossible to propose a single payer system here as too many people would be against it, but cost wise it would have been much more economic and it would have also required more health care rationing. A free market driven system with much less dependence on insurance companies and more of a doctor patient interaction would have been the best answer. The one big weakness that the Canadian system has is that it is not driven by market competition as our current HC system is, but that competition will diminish as the government gets its tentacles wrapped about health care and drives insurance companies out of business - less competition, common to all single payer systems.

The best health care system in terms of service are;
1. Free-market driven (GOP plan) that keeps some of the provisions of the ACA - pre-existing conditions and insured by parents until age 26. (Cost higher per capita than Canadian Single payer, but significantly less than the ACA aka Obamacare and subject to the least amount of rationing)
2. Canadian single payer - most affordable, but less in service than a free market driven HC system, more rationing).
3. ACA aka Obamacare - Most expensive, most regulatory, subject to rationing - more than Canadian Single payer).

The real problem is that politically, it may be very difficult to improve upon this - case and point - Tax reform and social security revisions have gone nowhere and have been talked about for the last 20-30 years, but there has been a lack of political will to act - that's why many of these sleezeballs need to be voted out in November !

Mike D

All I'm saying is you can't have a useful health care debate by taking arguments from pro-corporate, pro-insurance industry spokesmen as presenting them as "fact", which you did.

It's been said before: you're entitled to your opinions but not your own facts.

The new rightwing talking point that "Obamacare" is the largest tax increase in the country's history is utter tripe. You can't make that claim and expect to be taken seriously in a debate. You only pay a tax penalty if you don't have insurance, refuse to buy insurance, refuse to accept the subsidy that allows you to get insurance - in other words if you flat out refuse to participate in the system. That does not constitute the largest tax increase in history by any stretch of the imagination. It's a flat out lie.

So is the claim that "Obamacare" will force you to give up the insurance you already have. These are just scare tactics.

The GOP plan will cost more money than the ACA. The issue is the tens of millions of uninsured who can't afford coverage - this must be addressed if we have any hope of fixing the problem.


KS will you be sending back your SS checks when you get them? Will you be willing to pay out of pocket to see a doctor when your old man prostate goes wacky? Do you want to make sure your insurance company doesn't drop you after you have your wacky prostate operated on? If you get in a car accident, do you have enough cash to pay for a month in a hospital?? If you retire at 67 do you have enough in the bank to live off of for 20 years?

Puget Sound Blathers

why would KS return his SS checks. he lost a lot more in opportunity cost in the amount he has put away over the course of his work history.
do you get the time value of money concept?


Sparky, don't be silly. Evidently, you are impervious and uninterested in understanding the GOP plan(s) put forward - your sources seem to distort the truth and obscure the big picture. You have been indoctrinated with progressive talking points and scare tactics by your own choosing. You have vouchers on the brain and that is not the full story.

Show me multiple sources that demonstrate your fears have some substance to them. (See also my response below).

"So is the claim that "Obamacare" will force you to give up the insurance you already have. These are just scare tactics."

False, this is a fact. Many employers gave up their health insurance carriers since the passage of the ACA due to escalating costs. That affected upward of 20 million. Check it out for yourself instead of making your ass-umptions.

"The GOP plan will cost more money than the ACA. The issue is the tens of millions of uninsured who can't afford coverage - this must be addressed if we have any hope of fixing the problem."
Posted by: Mike D | June 30, 2012 at 05:51 PM

What proof do you have of this ? The Ryan healthcare plan (just one of them out there and not the final version) cost considerably less than the ACA. The tens of millions of uninsured will get coverage, but only if they want it and will not be forced to do so, like the individual mandate does, and even though it does the ACA will be unsustainable in 10 years give or take.

If you take the time to read Ryan's plan and the other Republican alternatives, you will find that they addressed the uninsured. If you don't bring some evidence that show what these alternatives offer, you are only offering up scare tactics from the progressivists. If you do, there will be a discussion to be had. Otherwise, this discussion is a waste of time.

(Media Matters doesn't count and Huffington Post links will be evaluated on their merits)


Here is a contribution to this discussion, to give you a real depiction of what the Republicans would propose as an alternative to the pernicious ACA aka the Healthcare Redistribution Tax;

Read this carefully


Hahahahaha. Oh, Mike D., you're trying to reason with KS. That's funny.

He did get the four liberal justices to agree to the first serious limit on the power the court has assigned to the Constitution’s Commerce Clause in 75 years.

No, he didn't.

To understand why Ginsburg, Breyer, Sotomayor and Kagan were right about the constitutionality of the Act under the Commerce Clause (even though they lost five-to-four on that issue), I have reprinted below a heavily-edited and abridged (by me) excerpt from Justice Ginsburg's dissenting opinion on the Commerce Clause issue. In my view, it absolutely shreds the opposing view and, in any event, is an excellent primer on the question:

You'll have to go to the link to read Ginsburg's reason for dissenting. KS won't do that.

You can't argue with KS. You have to keep knocking down his arguments with facts that he cant dispute. Then he goes on to blather unintelligibly. That's the only way to defeat him.

Mike D

At this point I'd cite the CBO but they're just another liberal conspiracy, right?


T-S, you're back and irrelevant as usual. However, I'd like to sample your blog.

At this point I'd cite the CBO but they're just another liberal conspiracy, right?

Posted by: Mike D | June 30, 2012 at 09:03 PM

Nonsense, the CBO is a non-partisan agency. The CBIO's numbers are based on what the politicians give them and updated on a regular basis. It is premature to provide a CBO estimate on anything except Ryan's plan, which will have future updates. The ACA has had several updates since it passed and every time there has been one, the cost increased - that's curious...


Told you, Mike. KS can't stand up to facts.


T-S - with all due respect, you have no facts. Blogging under the influence again ?


KS: He did get the four liberal justices to agree to the first serious limit on the power the court has assigned to the Constitution’s Commerce Clause

Truth: ... Ginsburg, Breyer, Sotomayor and Kagan were right about the constitutionality of the Act under the Commerce Clause (even though they lost 5-4)

There. I've made it really, really simple for you. You were wrong.

Mike D

Why can't we see the details of Ryan's plan now so the CBO can score it fully? Here's what we know:

it will force seniors' health care costs to go up

It will do nothing to address the problem of rising health care costs in general

It will reduce federal spending by slashing the social safety net. How is throwing huge numbers of people off Medicaid going to solve the health care problem?

Etc etc


Hasn't it already been scored ? you claim to know the above stuff. Source please ?

I dispute the second statement - It is duplicitous. it will be less costly than the ACA, so it does address costs.

So, why are you asking about the CBO score when you probably already know ? I know that the Ryan Healthcare plan costs less than the ACA. You would know that too if you bothered to read the CBO report.

Mike D

It's been scored but details about specific cuts have been left out. Here's a good rundown of the effects of the Ryan plan:



WASHINGTON -- Republicans have said repeatedly that the landmark health care reform law, upheld as constitutional by the Supreme Court last week, must be repealed and replaced. But the GOP leader in the U.S. Senate gave a surprising answer on "Fox News Sunday" when asked how Republicans would provide health care coverage to 30 million uninsured Americans.

"That is not the issue," Sen. Mitch McConnell said. "The question is how to go step by step to improve the American health care system. It is already the finest health care system in the world."

"Fox News Sunday" host Chris Wallace interrupted, "You don't think 30 million uninsured is an issue?"

"We're not going to turn the American health care system into a western European system," McConnell said.


Now we know where the GOP stands on the issue. Enough said.


Scare tactics, Mike - Another ass-umption. That tactic has also been used numerous times on Global warming...

Paul Ryan gave a more complete answer about that on ABC. McConnell dodged it and changed the topic, although your quote from the Puff Host did not include the part about high risk pools in the states that address Pre-existing conditions that you were trumpeting hysteria about earlier.

All you can honestly take from that is that he does not want a Government controlled health care system. Don't worry, that issue is big and will be debated in Congress in the event of the President signing a bill to repeal the Healthcare Redistribution Tax. Consider that many doctors are repelled by this Government plan and there will be a looming doctor shortage - it takes incentive away from future doctors who will be making less money with the ACA.

That ought to concern you- the politicians giving constituents something for nothing (i.e. Obamacare) will lead to our financial demise and bring on another recession next year as we hurtle over the financial cliff.

PJ O'Rourke's quote comes to mind; "If you think health care is expensive now, wait until it becomes free".


O'Rourke was wrong. Nothing in life is free and a good Republican should know that. He should have said: "wait until it becomes universal." Then it won't be free but it will be fair.


Nah, O'Rourke was spot on - you dodged the big increase in cost. To you, fair means redistributionist and state-controlled.


The truth is nobody knows what's in the Ryan plan. And the truth is nobody really knows how Obamacare is going to work out. Just a fact.

I've read on the left and on the right different analyses of both plans. It is pretty much resolved that Ryan's plan is skeletal. He, like Romney, doesn't really spell out the whole thing.

Many people on the left still question Obamacare and cost control. Pelosi said this morning that it is built in to the plan. Others say they don't see it.

Neither you nor I nor even Mike or Sparky know what is coming down the pike. I do know that we've moved the healthcare debate and that needed to be done and it took a democratic President to do it.

Thank you, Mr. President.

As for the CBO scoring Ryan's plan? Any plan that strips so much from seniors is likely to score well. That's doesn't mean it is a good plan. Judgment is required. I hope thoughtful people remember that.


T-S. You have no clue about what the Ryan plan has in it as you earlier wrote, yet you cast aspersions on something you don't really grasp. If someone here is able to cut and paste it and read it, then I'll pay attention to the rants. Until then, partisan scare tactics rule.

Here's what David Brooks, everyone's favorite true centrist had to say re:Judge Robert's decision;

David Brooks, the New York Times columnist, told NPR on Friday that Roberts “argued illogically and overly cleverly.” Brooks called his opinion “not very persuasive. But he had to get to a certain result, and he was going to find a way by hook or by crook.”

Pretty well sums it up - yawn. Moving on for a spell then will return, but this debate is not going away until after November 7th.


Are you saying, KS, that Ryan's plan does not call for vouchers replacing traditional medicare? And that that wouldn't have an effect on the CBO scoring of it?

David Brooks? Anybody that thinks David Brooks is smarter than the Chief Justice of the United States Supreme Court needs his head examined.

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