Ho, ho, ho ... this is good.
Boonstra said Monday her new plan she dislikes is the Blue Cross Premier Gold health care plan, which caps patient responsibility for out-of-pocket costs at $5,100 a year, lower than the federal law’s maximum of $6,350 a year. It means the new plan will save her at least $1,200 compared with her former insurance plan she preferred that was ended under Obamacare’s coverage requirements.
A Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan spokesman said the insurer welcomes a chance to help members understand their benefits and alleviate concerns.
“We are here to help people like Ms. Boonstra to work their way through adjusting to the health plans we are now offering them,” the Blue’s Andy Hetzel said. “If there are questions ... they should call.”
Boonstra later said she doesn't believe it. And herein lies the problem in attacking Ms. Boonstra personally or going through her garbage for proof that she knows Republicans or any of that other stuff ... she's not an evil person, she's just misinformed. It's very clear to me that she's spent a lot of years soaking in inaccurate media reports about how Obamacare is going to kill us all from factually inaccurate rightwing media reports that it appears that she simply can't believe that Obamacare will do anything but kill us all. So, when her own insurance company wishes to express to her that she's getting a good deal -- she'll save at least a grand a year -- her first inclination is to believe that she's being conned. That is, her inclination is to think that her insurance company is lying to her about what her new policy means because it conflicts with the shit she's heard day and night from Fox News. At some point in the very near future, if we wish to keep this republic of ours, we're going to have to do a mass cult deprogramming on half the population. I'll give you one guess which half.
As for Americans for Prosperity, it has to again be asked ... when they decided to exploit this woman's cancer for political benefit, did it ever occur to them to check whether she was going to be worse off under Obamacare and that they might have a moral obligation to come clean to her? Or, considering their willingness to use her as a human shield in a new ad, did they just apply a political gain calculus to her plight and call it good?
P.S. Can we finally start getting Michigan's Tee Vee stations to do the right thing and stop airing her ads. They're factually inaccurate and Tee Vee stations are supposed to have an obligation -- in exchange for using publicly owned airwaves -- to not lie to people.
This tires me. It's last week's latest attempt to repeal Obamacare, this time through the piecemeal effort of delaying penalties related to the individual manate. Gary Peters was one of 27 Democrats to vote for it ... along with every Republican.
This wasn't the standard "repeal Obamacare" vote that we've become accustomed to. This was the incremental "delay Obamacare until we win an election and can fully repeal Obamacare" vote that has replaced it. It's entirely symbollic and bad policy to boot, considering that despite the first fits and starts that Obamacare is working.
I don't know who is giving Gary Peters advice on this kind of crap, but they should be ignored. It's assumed that the point to this is to stave off criticism by various rightwing organizations that Gary Peters is depriving the Julie Boonstras of the world of their healthcare. It won't, because the people who paid for that ad don't care. They're going to lie shamelessly, and when called out for it are simply going to blame Gary Peters for their lying. We know this because they've already done it.
All this sort of thing does is serve to depress any excitement that grassroots Democrats have for Gary Peters as a top-of-ticket candidate. It weakens him, not stregthens him. Whoever told him that voting this way is a good idea is a perfect example of someone who's worked in Washington D.C. for far too long ... even if it's only for five minutes.
Update! ... This is what I'm talking about.
WASHINGTON (AP) — With just three weeks left to sign up under President Barack Obama's health care law, a major survey tracking the rollout finds that the uninsured rate keeps going down.
The Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index, released Monday, found that 15.9 percent of U.S. adults are uninsured thus far in 2014, down from 17.1 percent for the last three months — or calendar quarter— of 2013.
That translates roughly to 3 million to 4 million people getting coverage.
The coverage for Obamacare has shifted dramatically since the exchange website rollout, which we all accept was pretty horrific. Now, the coverage has shifted towards the success Obamacare is having in getting people enrolled. Gary Peters' is voting as if his votes are going to change how his opponents attempt to frame him, and as if the public gets its information from rightwing media outlets (as if they are going to stop pretending that Gary Peters is a horrible socialist who wants to take away people's cancer treatments).
Instead of playing the fundamentally unserious game that the House Republicans continue to play, he should get out ahead of their criticism and say, "It's not perfect, but it's working. Whatmore, Terri Lynn Land thought shutting down the federal government until Obamacare was repealed was a great idea, which means that Terri Lynn Land supports taking away the health care coverage of the 4 million Americans who today have health care through Obamacare."
Also, Michigan's Medicaid expansion has yet to take place. Transportation and the roads are great issues to hang around the neck of a governor who has for two years been pledging to fix the state's roads (hasn't gotten it done, by the way ... I'm sure that the amount of time the Legislature has devoted to things like Common Core hearings and killing wolves will be forgotten this spring when everyone in the state is howling for blood because they keep blowing tires). The Michigan Democratic Party ought to be using these new numbers to hammer on the Legislature for not letting Michiganders fully join in this good news because Pat Colbeck thinks a state run exchange violates the 10th Amendment, and because the state Senate couldn't have been bothered to give Medicaid expansion immediate effect.
Very recently, Gary Wolfram drove from one part of Lenawee County to another part of Lenawee County. As the drive progressed, he became increasingly enraged that the pump wouldn't take his credit card, and it appaently placed a great deal of strain on the relationship he has with his wife and child. The culprit? Minimum Rage.
Finally, I was able to get gas at a third station (by this time my wife and son were threatening to walk the rest of the way home). Now this is not a story of stubbornness in the face of obstacles, but a story of minimum wage.
Why was I struggling to pump my own gas in below -freezing temperatures, rather than be able to have an attendant pump the gas, ask me for my discount card and credit card and make sure everything went smoothly? Because those jobs don’t exist anymore due to minimum wage.
The minimum wage, you see, has taken your life of leisure and turned it into a flaming Hell on Earth. He has more examples.
Notice how the minimum wage has made your life more difficult. Many of you may have pumped your own gas on a cold and windy night. But notice also that no one gets your drinks for you anymore at fast food restaurants. They hand you a cup and you get your own. There are fewer tellers to help you with a transaction at a bank—you are supposed to use the ATM machine and do it yourself.
The most irritating example for me is no one answers a phone anymore for a business or other organization. A computer gives you several prompts, you struggle to figure out which one applies to you, eventually you are able to push a button that will eventually connect you to a person, you are told the wait will be interminable, but if you just go online and do it yourself, all will be better with the world.
In a world where a man has to press "1" to speak to technical support and fill his own soda cup at McDonald's, the living would envy the dead. One imagines the drive home becoming increasingly more uncomfortable for his wife and child, as he sits in the driver seat constantly muttering things like, "Lousy minimum wage, thinks it's so big," under his breath.
You might not recognize O’Keefe neophyte John Howting, the bearded gentleman shown above standing behind your humble correspondent, unless you work for a community organization in New York founded by Saul Alinsky. In that case, you might remember him as “Melvin,” who made the rounds in 2012 claiming to have graduated from West Point and wanting to know how to set up a union at his totally not fake company in order to skim dues and bribe politicians. For some reason this sounded suspicious to organizers for the Industrial Areas Foundation, which consequently escaped getting fake-videoed out of existence. He told us he’s now working for the Michigan Republican Party. It’s always nice to hear someone of his generation is able to find stable employment that makes use of this talents!
Emph. mine. The other day, after it was revealed that a Snyder-tied dirty trickster lied his way into an event for Mark Schauer, I asked whether these people were at all capable of being even remotely truthful. The answer, after learning that a different lying liar who tells lies for a living says he's employed by the Michigan Republican Party, is no.
*--Apologies to the estate of Hunter S. Thompson.
I might pop in later or tomorrow with a post, but let this keep your entertained.
Have fun in comments.
Just minutes ago, Judge Friedman announced that he will not issue a ruling today on if Michigan’s ban on same-gender marriages violates the US Constitution. He will spend the next couple of weeks reviewing the case before issuing his ruling.
That means that there will not be any same-sex marriage licenses issued today in Michigan - and the opportunity to have them has been pushed out at a week. We will be posting information to our Marriage Equality Center as it becomes available.
Based on stuff I saw on the Twitters, the state's concluding argument is that it should be okay to discriminate if lots of people are behind it. Good argument, that.
Sen. Rebekah WARREN (D-Ann Arbor) is ending her one-week exploratory review and will announce today she is a candidate for the U.S. Congress, MIRShas learned.
She will likely face Michigan Democratic Party National Committeewoman Debbie DINGELL, wife of retiring U.S. Rep John DINGELL (D-Dearborn), in the Democratic primary, where the winner is a heavy favorite to win in November. Republican Terry BOWMAN, known for his work with union conservatives, is running in this 66 percent Dem-base district.
Since announcing the exploratory committee last week, Ann Arbor supporters of Debbie Dingell have surfaced in what many saw as an attempt to deter Warren from getting in.
So soon, so soon after we received the political version of a Move to Florida notice.
Update! ... Maybe not (h/t Michael McGuinness comment). The story is worth reading for more than just the stuff about the 12th. It's also got information about the parts that might move around if she gets into the race.
Update2! ... Gongwer.
Sen. Rebekah Warren has just announced she will not run for the U.S. House and will instead run for re-election to the Senate.
In a post on her Facebook page, Ms. Warren (D-Ann Arbor) thanked those who had encouraged her to run for the 12th U.S. House District, but decided another four years in the Senate was the better move.
Alright, this race just got boring. Can I go do my workout now?
With Michigan looming as a now key Senate race, Democratic Rep. Gary Peters, who is locked in a tight battle with Republican Terri Lynn Land, has replaced his campaign manager.
Paul Tencher, who ran now-Sen. Joe Donnelly’s winning campaign for the Democrats in Indiana last cycle, will take over as the head of Peters’s campaign operation. Tencher will replace Julie Petrick, who is stepping aside for personal reasons, Peters said in a statement.
“Paul is a seasoned campaign manager with an impressive record of winning races,” Peters said. “He will work closely with all of our Michigan supporters and allies to build an unprecedented grass-roots campaign that is focused on turning out voters and on the issues that matter most to middle-class families in Michigan.”
His views emerged following a question from plaintiffs attorney Ken Mogill, who is fighting to overturn Michigan’s ban on gay marriage.
“Is it accurate that you believe the consequence of engaging in homosexual acts is a separation from God and eternal damnation?” Mogill asked the state’s expert, then added, “in other words, they’re going to hell.”
“Without repentance, yes,” answered the expert, Canadian economist Douglas Allen, he last witness to testify on behalf of the state in a trial that could make Michigan the 18th state to legalize gay marriage.
Later in the story, a spokeswoman for Michigan's finest legal mind says that she doesn't think that believing that all homosexuals will roast in the flames of Hell taints his testimony as biased.
Back right before I fled Jackson, the county prosecutor was in the middle of taking a lot of flak for his decision to prosecute someone who'd eaten grapes while grocery shopping and not paid for them. This was an incident I recalled a few years ago, when Isabella County's prosecutor went after a guy for stealing $20 in slot credits from an elderly couple. This was an incident I recalled the other day reading about how Michigan's finest legal mind was defending the state's same sex marriage ban with all the acument and competence of Lionel Hutz. It reminds Jack Lessenberry of a different case.
The county spent thousands bringing in expert witnesses at taxpayers’ expense. Fieger brought in others. Everyone grandstanded. Juries listened, deliberated…and acquitted Kevorkian, every time.
Then, when the next primary election rolled around, Prosecutor Thompson was challenged by a young unknown named Dave Gorcyca. Gorcyca had one simple slogan: If elected, he would stop wasting taxpayer money on the fruitless prosecutions. When the votes were counted, he won easily.
I’ve been thinking about those Kevorkian trials, ever since the current same-sex marriage and adoption trial got underway in federal district court in Detroit. In a time of scarcity, when other prosecutors lack basic resources, Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette has been mounting a highly-expensive, full-court press in an effort to try and prevent the court from finding two things: That same-sex couples should be allowed to adopt children, and marry if they please.
The difference also is that the expert witnesses Bill Schuette has paid a lot of tax dollars to bring in aren't actually experts. One was a philosopher and another is discredited in his own profession. It's a cosmic joke.
The joke is also on you, because you get to pay the tab. How much is it costing you? Good question. Someone should ask.