Posts tagged ‘Big Government Republicans’

Ohio voters face challenges from tea party groups – latimes.com


Ohio voters face challenges from tea party groups – latimes.com.

CINCINNATI — Lori Monroe, a 40-year-old Democrat who lives in central Ohio, was startled a few weeks ago to open a letter that said a stranger was challenging her right to vote in the presidential election.

Monroe, who was recovering from cancer surgery, called the local election board to protest. A local tea party leader was trying to strike Monroe from the voter rolls for a reason that made no sense: Her apartment building in Lancaster was listed as a commercial property.

“I’m like, really? Seriously?” Monroe said. “I’ve lived here seven years, and now I’m getting challenged?”

Monroe’s is one of at least 2,100 names that tea party groups have sought to remove from Ohio’s voter rosters.

The groups and their allies describe it as a citizen movement to prevent ballot fraud, although the Republican secretary of state said in an interview that he knew of no evidence that any more than a handful of illegal votes had been cast in Ohio in the last few presidential elections.

“We’re all about election integrity — making sure everyone who votes is registered and qualified voters,” said Mary Siegel, one of the leaders of the Ohio effort.

Some Democrats see it as a targeted vote-suppression drive. The names selected for purging include hundreds of college students, trailer park residents, homeless people and African Americans in counties President Obama won in 2008.

The battle over who belongs on the voter rolls in Ohio comes as supporters of Obama and his Republican challenger, Mitt Romney, are making elaborate plans to monitor the polls and mount legal challenges after the Nov. 6 election if necessary.

Obama’s reelection campaign and Romney allies are already fighting in court over Republican efforts to block Ohio voters from casting ballots the weekend before the election. In 2008, Ohio’s final weekend of early voting drew tens of thousands of African Americans to cast ballots, mainly for Obama.

The racial dimension of the 2012 clash over weekend voting burst into the open last month when one of Ohio’s most powerful Republicans, Franklin County GOP Chairman Doug Preisse, told the Columbus Dispatch, “We shouldn’t contort the voting process to accommodate the urban — read African American — voter-turnout machine.”

Some Democrats see the developments in Ohio as part of a national drive by Obama’s opponents to minimize turnout of his supporters, one that includes efforts elsewhere to impose new voter ID rules.

“Too much of this is going on for this not to be a coordinated effort,” said Tim Burke, chairman of the Hamilton County Democratic Party in the tea party stronghold of southwestern Ohio.

The Rev. Rousseau A. O’Neal, one of a group of black ministers from Cincinnati who provided buses to take African Americans to the polls in 2008 and plan to do so again in November, described the tea party project and the curtailment of weekend voting as “bigotry of the highest order.”

“Who ever thought we’d be fighting for the right to vote in 2012?” he asked.

The tea party groups, scattered around the state, have joined forces under the banner of the Ohio Voter Integrity Project. It is an offshoot of True the Vote, a Texas organization that has recruited volunteers nationwide to challenge voter rosters and work as poll watchers.

True the Vote was founded by Catherine and Bryan Engelbrecht, a couple who run an oil field equipment manufacturing firm in Rosenberg, Texas.

In Ohio, election records show, one of the project’s top priorities has been to remove college students from the voter rolls for failure to specify dorm room numbers. (As a group, college students are strongly in Obama’s camp.)

Voters challenged include 284 students at the Ohio State University campus in Columbus, 110 at Oberlin College, 88 at College of Wooster, 38 at Kent State — and dozens more from the University of Cincinnati, Miami University, Lake Erie College, Walsh University, Hiram College, John Carroll University and Telshe Yeshiva, a rabbinical college near Cleveland.

So far, every county election board that has reviewed the dorm challenges found them invalid.

In some cases, the Ohio tea party researchers have correctly identified voters who have died or moved, speeding up the official updating of registration files. They also found voters registered at a Cincinnati trailer park that no longer exists.

Copyright © 2012, Los Angeles Times

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Romney: I Will Do My Best to Overturn Roe v. Wade


Romney: I Will Do My Best to Overturn Roe v. Wade.

Mitt Romney, on Meet the Press this morning, voiced his full support for the War on Women, stating that it is his preference that the Supreme Court overturn Roe v. Wade.

I am pro-life and will intend, if I’m president of the United States, to encourage pro-life policies.”

How would he encourage pro-life policies?

I hope to appoint justices for the Supreme Court that will follow the law and the constitution. And it would be my preference that they reverse Roe V. Wade and therefore they return to the people and their elected representatives the decisions with regards to this important issue.

Isn’t that curious? Why just a few days ago, we had Karl Rove reassuring us that “no one is seriously considering ending abortion,”

Program Offering Immigrants Reprieve Is Off to Quick Start – NYTimes.com


Program Offering Immigrants Reprieve Is Off to Quick Start – NYTimes.com.

One month after the Obama administration started a program to suspend deportations of young illegal immigrants, more than 72,000 of them have applied for the temporary reprieve, senior immigration officials said on Tuesday, and this week the first approvals have been granted.
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The figures for applications received so far — the first results the administration has released since a federal agency began receiving the documents on Aug. 15 — show that large numbers of young immigrants are ready to take the risk of coming forward, administration officials and immigrant advocates said, and that the agency in charge has been able to manage the rush of paperwork.

The immigrants requesting two-year deportation deferrals do not reach the high estimates of 250,000 that officials had said they were prepared to handle in the first month of the program, which is President Obama’s most significant immigration initiative.

But at the current rate, at least 200,000 young immigrants could have applications in the pipeline by the time of the presidential election on Nov. 6, and many thousands will probably have received deferrals and the work permits that go along with them. Officials originally predicted that it could take several months for the immigration agency, United States Citizenship and Immigration Services, to issue the first deferrals.

The intense activity around the program in immigrant communities, especially among Latinos, has already yielded some political benefits to Mr. Obama, with Democrats repeatedly highlighting the initiative during their convention last week, to cheers from the floor. Initiated by an executive action, the program grants deportation deferrals that must be renewed after two years, and it does not provide any legal immigration status.

Pressure is increasing on Mitt Romney, the Republican candidate, to clarify his position on the program. He has not said whether he would continue it if he is elected, although he has said he would prefer “a more permanent solution” for young illegal immigrants.

The surge of applicants has not been greater, lawyers and advocates said, because of difficulties many young immigrants have encountered in gathering the documents they need to meet the program’s requirements and in mustering the $465 application fee, a hefty sum for many. Since the program has no filing deadline, eligible young people are taking time to consult with their families, weighing the benefits for them against possible risks for parents and siblings here illegally who are not eligible.

“There has been huge interest in community programs where people can get information,” said Laura Lichter, president of the American Immigration Lawyers Association, who practices in Denver. “But these applications are not something you would be ready to go with in one day. They take a fair amount of work. And we have to be sure people understand the risks they are taking.”

To qualify, illegal immigrants must be under 31 years old and have come to the United States before they were 16. They must show that they have lived here continuously since June 15, 2007, and be currently in school or have earned a high school diploma or have been honorably discharged from the military. They must pass a background check to show they do not have any significant criminal record or pose a threat to national security.

The program posed a test for the immigration agency, known as U.S.C.I.S., which has not been known for brisk efficiency. According to the Migration Policy Institute, a nonpartisan research group, as many as 1.2 million illegal immigrants could be immediately eligible for the program.

Given only two months to prepare, Alejandro Mayorkas, the director of the agency, worked to rally its 18,000 employees, including some 11,000 federal workers, to rise to the task. The applications — sheaves of school transcripts, utility and other bills, rental contracts or other documents immigrants can find to track their daily lives over the past five years — have to be submitted by mail.

Operating in the bureaucratic equivalent of a blitz, the agency has been issuing receipts for applications within 48 hours after they were logged in, Mr. Mayorkas said. Fingerprints and photographs are taken for background checks, generally within three weeks after an application is received.

The first applicants gave their fingerprints last Thursday, Mr. Mayorkas said, and the checks were completed by Monday. The agency is equipped to perform the criminal checks, Department of Homeland Security officials said, because those are required for most visas the agency routinely issues.

Completed applications first reached the decision-making officers on Monday. By that afternoon the first few approvals were issued, Mr. Mayorkas said, with several dozen more on Tuesday. Some immigrants were notified immediately by text message.

“If somebody submits documents that show by the preponderance of the evidence that they meet the guidelines, we are poised to move the cases as quickly as possible,” Mr. Mayorkas said.

Mr. Mayorkas said he expected the first work permits, which are approved in a separate but parallel process, to be issued in coming weeks.

Administration officials have said the program will be paid for by fees, with no taxpayer money invested. California is leading in applications, not surprisingly, followed by Texas, New York, Florida and New Jersey. By far the largest number of applicants was born in Mexico. But officials said a surprisingly large number of applications came from South Koreans, a much smaller population of immigrants.

As the deferral program expands, resistance to it has grown among Republicans in Congress, who say it is undermining the administration’s broader enforcement against illegal immigration and making it difficult for immigration agents to do their jobs.

In a letter on Tuesday to John Morton, the director of the agency in charge of enforcement, Senator Jeff Sessions, a Republican from Alabama, wrote, “There is no question that the administration’s unilaterally decreed policy is contrary to codified federal law and places our law enforcement officers in an untenable position.”
A version of this article appeared in print on September 12, 2012, on page A19 of the New York edition with the headline: Quick Start to Program Offering Immigrants a Reprieve.

Why Medicare Cards Still Show Social Security Numbers – NYTimes.com


Why Medicare Cards Still Show Social Security Numbers – NYTimes.com.

A Medicare identification card.The New York TimesA Medicare identification card.

Images of a woman waving her Medicare card on television at the Democratic convention last week in Charlotte, N.C., prompted the folks at Credit.com and others to ask: Why do Medicare cards still have Social Security numbers on them anyway, when access to the numbers can post a risk of identity theft?

The answer is that the federal government has been dragging its heels for years on making a change, because, according to various reports from the agency that oversees Medicare, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, it would be both expensive and complex technologically to re-issue cards with new identification numbers.

According to testimony from a C.M.S. official before Congress in August, “transitioning to a new identifier would be a task of enormous complexity and cost and one that, undertaken without sufficient planning, would present great risks to continued access to health care for Medicare beneficiaries.”

About 48 million Americans carry Medicare cards that use their Social Security number as part of their health-claim number.

In a report issued in 2006, C.M.S. said it would cost $300 million to remove SSNs from Medicare cards. Then, in an updated report last November, it said it would cost at least $803 million, and possibly as much as $845 million, depending on the option chosen. Much of the cost, the agency said, was for upgrading computer systems not only at the federal level, but also at the state level, for coordination with Medicaid systems.

But the Government Accountability Office said in its testimony to Congress in August that the methods and assumptions that C.M.S. used to develop its costs estimates “raise questions about their reliability.”

“Lack of action on this key initiative leaves Medicare beneficiaries exposed to the possibility of identity theft,” the G.A.O. said. It recommended that C.M.S. select an approach to modify or remove the numbers from Medicare cards and develop an “accurate, well-documented cost estimate.”

According to the G.A.O., C.M.S. agreed with its recommendations and will conduct a new estimate with improved methodology. That’s likely to take some time. So don’t expect Medicare cards free of the numbers anytime soon.

Meantime, the AARP and the Privacy Rights Clearinghouse suggest making a photocopy of your Medicare card, cutting it to wallet size and cutting out the last four digits of your Social Security numbers. Carry the photocopy in your wallet instead of the actual card. (You’ll still need your original card the first time you visit a provider, because they’ll likely want a photocopy of it).

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Florida voters facing a long, long ballot in November – Tampa Bay Times


Florida voters facing a long, long ballot in November – Tampa Bay Times.

TALLAHASSEE — Brace yourselves, Florida voters: The election ballot you’ll see this fall is longer than ever.

It’s so long that voters will have to fill out multiple sheets with races on both sides, then feed those multiple pages through ballot scanners, one page at a time.

It’s a pocketbook issue, too: Some people who vote by mail will have to dig deeper and pay at least 65 cents postage and up to $1.50 to return their multipage ballots in heavier envelopes.

More than ever, county election supervisors say, people should vote early or request an absentee ballot to avoid predicted bottlenecks at the polls on Election Day.

“This is the longest ballot I can remember,” said Pinellas County Supervisor of Elections Deborah Clark. “The voter who sees this ballot the first time may need smelling salts.”

The ballot will be chock full of choices, for president, U.S. Senate, Congress, the state Legislature, county offices and merit retention for judges, all the way down to city and county referendums.

But what may prompt some voters to rub their eyes in disbelief is the Legislature’s decision to place 11 proposed changes to the Constitution on the ballot, some of which appear in their entirety.

“They have really created a monster,” said Monroe County Supervisor of Elections Harry Sawyer Jr. in Key West.

Four amendments run on for hundreds of words, and are full of legalese such as this, on Amendment No. 5, dealing with the court system: “If the Legislature determines that a rule has been readopted and repeals the readopted rule, this proposed revision prohibits the court from further readopting the repealed rule without the Legislature’s prior approval.”

The Legislature has long criticized the Florida Supreme Court for rejecting some of its proposed amendments as misleading, which some Republican lawmakers view as an overreach by the judiciary.

In 2000, the court retroactively struck down a 1998 constitutional amendment on the death penalty, calling the ballot summary incomplete and misleading.

The court said legislators misled voters by replacing the term “cruel or unusual punishment” with “cruel and unusual punishment,” which it said was a “radical change” not explained to voters, 73 percent of whom approved the amendment.

As a result, the Legislature exempted itself from the 75-word limit that applies to citizen-sponsored ballot initiatives.

“It’s an effort by the Legislature, the body closest to the people, to ensure that voters have the right to vote on these amendments,” said Rep. Richard Corcoran, R-Trinity.

Corcoran said most voters will do their homework and know the amendments before they vote. But some election supervisors aren’t so sure.

“To understand these full-text amendments, you almost have to be a Harvard lawyer,” said Sharon Harrington, the Lee County elections supervisor in Fort Myers.

With all that verbiage, election supervisors predict a higher than usual rate of “drop-off,” as voters overlook state ballot questions altogether. If they do, they also may skip city or county ballot questions listed below the state questions.

“There is such a thing as voter fatigue,” Clark said. “You have that with any long ballot.”

Another factor making the ballot longer is a federal requirement that 13 counties must print ballots in English and Spanish because of their voting populations. The state’s two largest counties, Miami-Dade and Broward, must print ballots in English, Spanish and Creole.

Miami-Dade, which also has local elections in 14 cities, may publish a 10-page ballot — five pages, front and back — and an ad campaign will remind voters they can vote early or by mail. Voters can print a sample ballot online and check wait times at early voting sites.

“We want to educate voters because of the inevitability of long wait times,” said Miami-Dade Supervisor of Elections Penelope Townsley.

All those ballot pages mean voters will need more time to vote.

“I’m beyond concerned,” said Pasco County Supervisor of Elections Brian Corley. “The unknown variable is how long the voter is in the privacy booth. They can be there as long as they want to.”

Corley is adding brightly colored “voter alert” notices on business cards, utility bills and voter information cards issued by his office, urging people to request absentee ballots for the Nov. 6 election.

“Avoid lines and vote from the convenience of your home,” the notices tell Pasco voters.

So many ballot pages means more work for those box-shaped optical scan machines that “read” the results. That has elections officials bracing for another problem.

The boxes below those scanners can only hold so many pages, and they will have to be replaced a lot more frequently than usual.

“We’re going to have to stop periodically throughout the day and empty those bins and seal them,” said Harrington of Lee County. “It may hold up some people at the polls for a little while.”

Lee County voters have in the past been given a two-page ballot because of the county’s multitude of elections for single-purpose boards such as fire districts. This year’s ballot is four pages with choices on both sides.

Like most counties, Lee will send every registered voter a sample ballot. Harrington says people who want to vote on Election Day should fill out the sample ballot at home and bring it with them when they vote.

The cost for a Lee County voter to return an absentee ballot is 65 cents, the same as in Pasco and Pinellas counties.

Pinellas offers 14 ballot return sites throughout the county so that voters can return their mail ballots without buying stamps.

Palm Beach County Supervisor of Elections Susan Bucher said the postage needed to return a mail ballot there is $1.50.

Elections officials don’t like to say it publicly, but they have agreements with the U.S. Postal Service to pay for postage due on ballot envelopes.

For the first time, Hillsborough is prepaying the postage for all of its six-page mail ballots, as a convenience to voters. The cost is about $105,000.

Deirdre Macnab of Winter Park, president of the League of Women Voters of Florida, said the length of the ballot may make legislators regret their decision to reduce the number of early voting days from 14 to eight. The group challenged the decision in court.

6 Worst Lies In Paul Ryan’s Speech


6 Worst Lies In Paul Ryan’s Speech.

en on Aug 30, 2012 at 9:36 am

Vice presidential candidate Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) is taking flack on the morning news shows for his keynote address at the Republican National Convention Wednesday night. His speech was riddled with false claims, so much so that even Fox News wrote, “To anyone paying the slightest bit of attention to facts, Ryan’s speech was an apparent attempt to set the world record for the greatest number of blatant lies and misrepresentations slipped into a single political speech.”

Here are the most glaring lies from his speech:

1. “A downgraded America.” Ryan blamed the president for the nation’s credit downgrade in August 2011 after Republicans threatened to allow the government to default on its debt for the first time in history. But the ratings agency explicitly blamed “Republicans saying that they refuse to accept any tax increases as part of a larger deal.”

2. “More debt than any other president before him, and more than all the troubled governments of Europe combined.” Romney has made the almost identical claim, that Obama has amassed more debt “as almost all of the other presidents combined.” But their math doesn’t add up: when Obama took office, the national debt was $10.626 trillion. It has increased to slightly above $15 trillion.

Are US IMF Austerity Measures The Real Goal For Corporatists?


Why are the real rulers of America pushing so hard for the US government to assume the banks private gambling debts?

Experts agree that the banks real losses dwarf any estimates seen so far, and that the eventual bill will be huge.

But, most Americans didn’t create those debts! WHY should we pay? Because the looting of America demands it! Because the bankers have so much power, thats why! The obvious endgame is that after assuming so much debt, not only would all social programs be put on hold indefinitely, eventually the US would eventually default on the deficit, forcing the US into IMF austerity programs.

Programs like Social Security and Medicare typically are eliminated in these national default situations.

Is the goal to force the US into the same kinds of IMF austerity programs that have caused riots in so many other nations?

Certainly, the US, which has been at the lead in pushing for these measures elsewhere, would not be able to escape having its own medicine applied to it.

Inquiring minds want to know.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Austerity

“In economics, austerity is when a national government reduces its spending in order to pay back creditors. Austerity is usually required when a government’s fiscal deficit spending is felt to be unsustainable.

Development projects, welfare programs and other social spending are common areas of spending for cuts. In many countries, austerity measures have been associated with short-term standard of living declines until economic conditions improved once fiscal balance was achieved (such as in the United Kingdom under Margaret Thatcher, Canada under Jean Chrétien, and Spain under González).

Private banks, or institutions like the International Monetary Fund (IMF), may require that a country pursues an ‘austerity policy’ if it wants to re-finance loans that are about to come due. The government may be asked to stop issuing subsidies or to otherwise reduce public spending. When the IMF requires such a policy, the terms are known as ‘IMF conditionalities’.

Austerity programs are frequently controversial, as they impact the poorest segments of the population and often lead to a wider separation between the rich and poor. In many situations, austerity programs are imposed on countries that were previously under dictatorial regimes, leading to criticism that populations are forced to repay the debts of their oppressors.[1][2][3]”

The whole trickle down economics thing has been disproven mathematically. But people like Bush and unfortunately, now even Obama keep bringing it back in different forms again.

Tags: cashfortrash, IMF, International Monetary Fund, ponzi scheme (all tags)

Comments

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The Real Goal

 Perhaps allowing the world to slide into a prolonged deep economic depression would be the more prudent course, as I’m sure it would hurt the very rich while helping poor people across the globe.

by QTG 2009-03-21 08:53AM | 0 recs

Trickle down economics

So you believe in trickle down economics?  As the New York Times said..

“In the Real World of Work and Wages, Trickle-Down Theories Don’t Hold Up”

Did you realize that the banks knew that the loans were bad when they made them?

How does that figure into this?

by architek 2009-03-21 09:03AM | 0 recs

Re: Trickle down economics

 And you believe that MI and FL were stolen?

by QTG 2009-03-21 09:07AM | 0 recs

And you are living in the past

if you don’t understand the immediate meaning of the IMF austerity programs and how they would steal our future from ALL of us.

We must not assume any more of this toxic debt!

by architek 2009-03-21 09:20AM | 0 recs

Serious question:

Are you actually advocating policies that would cause even more extreme and prolonged economic calamity than is going to happen anyway – just to give yourself more opportunities to trash Obama?

(Now that I asked it, it seems more like a rhetorical question.)

by QTG 2009-03-21 09:30AM | 0 recs

No way..

I like Obama. I just think he’s got some kind of mistaken idea that the people want many things they obviously don’t.

Or something.

Its not being responsible to buy these toxic assets the way he’s doing while letting so many other pressing problems go unaddressed.

Still, I agree with what all of you keep saying in that Obama was a far better choice than McCain/Palin.

Even with the many problems that I saw coming due to his trying to be all things to all people.

I was also happy to see a black person getting to be President, even with all the problems they are giving Obama to clean up. He is doing very well except for his embrace of trickle down and the unwillingness to consider single payer when its the only way to fix the healthcare crisis legally. (the stuff he’s suggesting is against the WTO treaty)

Obviously, black people are impacted a LOT by things like our lack of universal healthcare.

Maybe the healing represented by having a black person as President will reduce some of the major issues many of them have with stress-caused diseases even as those same issues increase in other people.

One can only worry when thinking about the future and the economy.

BTW, I never considered doing anything other than voting for a Democrat.

Also, I admire smarts when I see it.

Whoever thought up the caucus crossover voter strategy, pure genius.

by architek 2009-03-21 01:20PM | 0 recs

Re: Are US IMF Austerity Measures The Real Goal Fo

Beware of anyone who throws around demagogic terms such as “the real rulers of America” and “corporatists” – an undefined enemy is an imaginary enemy.

by rfahey22 2009-03-21 09:47AM | 0 recs

Really?

I will do that..

BTW, I’m not the only one terrified by corporations and their frequent amorality.

The founders of this country were too.

by architek 2009-03-21 01:22PM | 0 recs

They were?

What corporations were our founding fathers terrified of exactly? British Tea and Knickers Incorporated?

by DTOzone 2009-03-21 09:37PM | 0 recs

Corporations are unable to say no

Groupthink.. Irving Janis

Yes, barbaric British corporations, and other colonial corporations that savaged their respective fiefdoms.

by architek 2009-03-21 11:49PM | 0 recs

LOL

I always thought King George III was a person…tell me architek, how is Parliament doing on the FTSE 100?

by DTOzone 2009-03-22 12:29AM | 0 recs

Its a sign of ethical collapse

to put meeting numerical targets ahead of ethics.

by architek 2009-03-22 07:01AM | 0 recs

WTF are you even talking about now?
by DTOzone 2009-03-22 11:52AM | 0 recs

Boy are you desperate

to change the subject

by architek 2009-03-22 08:18PM | 0 recs

Re: They were?

That would be the British east India Company, the guys whose policies forced the Boston Tea Party.

by David Kowalski 2009-03-22 11:54AM | 0 recs

Re: I’m SO There

if we get to dress up like Indians!

by QTG 2009-03-22 02:17PM | 0 recs

Corporate personhood

is where we went wrong. That was ths nations biggest mistake.

Ad it wasn’t even done legally The Santa Clara opinion was a scam.

Nobody ever voted on corprate personhood. We need a referendum on such an important issue. Corporations can’t die, they can’t be put in jail. They cannot be responsible.

Money is not free speech. What the hell is going on?

Repeal Santa Clara!

by architek 2009-03-22 08:13PM | 0 recs

Ah yes

I forgot the British East India Company took it upon themselves to exempt themselves from the tea tax and monopolize tea in the colonies…I mean not like Parliament had anything to do with THAT.

by DTOzone 2009-03-22 05:39PM | 0 recs

You needed to buy a stamp to do anything

Sort of like the ACTA, (which the Obama folk wont let be discussed.. like they are discussing now finally in Europe..)

For more, visit eff.org and other sites..

Treaties are above laws, on the level of the Constitution.

Secret treaties should be illegal.

BTW, WTO seems to ban many of Obama’s halfway healthcare proposals. Nobody has even discussed this except for Public Citizen, but it seriously threatens the whole idea of a public alternative for health insurance.

Was that planned? Who knows, nobody.

by architek 2009-03-22 08:17PM | 0 recs

 

 

 

Are US IMF Austerity Measures The Real Goal For Corporatists?.