Clinton Details Premium Cap of 5-10% For Families in Health Plan

In the New York Times, Hillary Clinton has spelled out the specifics of her health care plan and it is clear that it represents not just a 'step towards', but instead, promises actual affordability for American families and individuals.

If Elected ...
Clinton Details Premium Cap in Health Plan

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/03/28/us/pol itics/28clinton.html

In the interview, she promised that her health care plan, with its mandated coverage for all, including those over 50, and those with chronic health conditions, would not be the kind of painful expense for families like health care often is now, and that the total costs for both employer and the individual, or the total for the self employed - would be pegged at a maximum of 5-10% of a family's annual income. That cost would usually, only be paid by the self employed, many employers would pay a portion of that cost. The plan would bring down costs by covering a larger number of people.

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Obama and His Support of Stealth Nuclear Safety De-regulation

I think that often bills that purport to 'help' on an area actually hurt in that they give green lights to corporations to advance in their irresponsibility in previously gray areas.

This prevents people effected from being able to file lawsuits.

In the long run, this real-world increased lack of regulation through phony regulations helps corporations cut costs on things like safety.

This seems to perhaps be an area where Obama "excels".  Look at the example of nuclear plant operator Excelon.

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/02/03/us/pol itics/03exelon.html


Nuclear Leaks and Response Tested Obama in Senate
By MIKE McINTIRE

When residents in Illinois voiced outrage two years ago upon learning that the Exelon Corporation had not disclosed radioactive leaks at one of its nuclear plants, the state's freshman senator, Barack Obama, took up their cause.

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My Reasons To Fear Obama's Intentions On Health Care [UPDATE]

Its obvious that a lot of the people who support Barack Obama also support universal heathcare. People want CHANGE for a REASON.

Without REAL change, the next few years will see healthcare bankrupt many MORE millions of Americans and lack of access to basic health care will continue to kill and permanently injure tens, probably hundreds thousands of Americans EACH YEAR. Fewer and fewer Americans will be able to afford even basic medical care.

We always expect the Republicans to promote nonworking 'free market' solutions to health care and John McCain does not disappoint, as his 'proposals' are clearly prohibited by NAFTA and WTO agreements. So they are designed to fail, as they can't happen without renegotiation of those agreements.

But we would expect DEMOCRATIC candidate Barack Obama solution to address the problem comprehensively, and effectively, right?

WRONG...

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Faulting Hillary for 'failing' with healthcare WORSE THAN A LIE

From what I understand Obama has openly criticized Hillary for putting forward the Clinton-care proposal in 1993, because it wasn't adopted by a bipartisan vote.. because it did not please the big business interests.

Thats interesting, because look WHOSE 'plan' does. And why? Because it dumps most of the cost back onto the people of America, thats why. Because we will continue to pay far more and get far less. Even according to the National Review - of all places.. read the below, summarizing why the Clintons failed..their plan would not have placed a high enough burden on the people!

See http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_m1282/is_n4_v46/ai_14885300/pg_1 Its written from the employers perspective..

To those who insist that Obama intends to make healthcare affordable, I STRONGLY suggest you read Obama's plan carefully, and then do some research into the years of research that has been done exploring the fairly limited number of ways that healthcare can be financed. Especially the things that happened in 1993. (which tell us a lot about why big business is so heavily behind Obama NOW.)

Obama's plan WON'T make healthcare affordable for the people. It will make it affordable FOR BUSINESS. Thats what he means..partly. How blind can people be!?!

The mandate for everyone to buy it is important because like it or not, that is also a mandate that it ACTUALLY BE AFFORDABLE.. Obama's plan is DESTINED, some would say, DESIGNED, to fail, BECAUSE HEALTHY PEOPLE WILL OPT OUT.

A far better approach is to make it mandatory, AND THEN SUBSIDIZE THE COST FOR POOR AND MIDDLE CLASS PEOPLE SUBSTANTIALLY.

Its the ONLY way..

DECADES of statistical modeling work that has been done ALL OVER THE WORLD show this.

That work shows conclusively what Hillary has been trying to explain to Americans. That under Obama's (non-) 'plan' THE NUMBER OF UNINSURED AMERICANS WILL CONTINUE TO RISE AND HEALTHCARE WILL CONTINUE TO GET LESS AND LESS AFFORDABLE FOR MOST AMERICANS.

If you doubt that THAT IS HIGHLY PROBABLE, you need only to look at WHO Obama has in his campaign as his current point man on healthcare issues, THE VERY SAME PERSON WHO PUT FORWARD THE MANDATE-LESS "CLINTON-LITE" proposal that effectively KILLED HILLARY's 1993 UNIVERSAL HEALTHCARE PLAN.. Jim Cooper...

in 1993, employers and the corporate world preferred Jim Cooper's Clinton Lite to the real thing for one reason especially. It would cost them far less and the consumer FAR more. And they won. They killed the Clinton plan. With Jim Cooper's help. They dodged a bullet. And America went through 15 more years of healthcare hell.

But now, HE's BAAACK.. and he is WORKING FOR OBAMA...

Almost 70% of American want univeral healthcare. They want a semblance of REAL stability in their lives, not a false promise.

Polls tell us that. We all deserve better than what we will get with Jim Cooper and Obama. This is the BIG reason the corporate world is giving so much to Obama.

The GOP, desperate to have Obama be the Dem nominee, are desperately spinning the 1993 story to try to cover up the fact that it was in essence, Obama's plan- the honor system, voluntary plan without employer mandates, that was the universal healthcare killer.

Jim Cooper.. Clinton-Lite ... how soon we forget...

So anybody who is trying to 'blame' Hillary for 'failing' had better take another look at Obama's plan.. WHICH HAS BEEN SHOWN BY YEARS OF STATISTICAL MODELING TO NOT BE A SOLUTION.

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Clinton Potentially Ahead In Votes Using Key Measure: NYT

This is an interesting article.

Much as the Electoral College makes many see red, it is still with us.

Clinton Backer Points to Electoral College Votes as New Measure
http://www.nytimes.com/2008/03/24/us/pol itics/24campaign.html


"Senator Evan Bayh of Indiana, who backs Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton for president, proposed another gauge Sunday by which superdelegates might judge whether to support Mrs. Clinton or Senator Barack Obama.

He suggested that they consider the electoral votes of the states that each of them has won.

"So who carried the states with the most Electoral College votes is an important factor to consider because ultimately, that's how we choose the president of the United States," Mr. Bayh said on CNN's "Late Edition."

In a primary, of course, electoral votes are not relevant, but the Clinton campaign is trying to use them as an unofficial measure of strength.

So far, Mrs. Clinton has won states with a total of 219 Electoral College votes, not counting Florida and Michigan, while Mr. Obama has won states with a total of 202 electoral votes. "

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Tibet, Uranium, Energy, History - Is Tibet China's Iraq?

Is there a parallel between Tibet and Iraq? Is Tibet's uranium part of the reason China is there? Maybe... perhaps even probably..

I have, like many of us, I'm sure, been looking at the many videos on YouTube of the demonstrations in Tibet and elsewhere in western China. Its depressing how oblivious China is to the needs of the people there for equality and an economic future. I think much of the anger is from Tibetans because they feel extremely marginalized. They are being marginalized in their own country.

One thing that I had not realized until now, is that evidently, Tibet contains the largest deposits of uranium in the world, some of which are, ironically, right around Lhasa, the pre-Chinese Tibetan capital.

Obviously, uranium equals energy.. just as oil does..

A desire to control that uranium would explain a lot.

As I said, its supposed to hold the largest deposits in the world. At least, this is what I have read on a number of web sites. And it makes sense, given Tibet's incredible geology. (Its the most mountainous place in the world, and the earth's crust is folded exposing large quantities of many metals that are not found near the surface elsewhere.

I have read (on a Tibetan web site) that China used the Tibetan uranium to pay back a huge loan that the ex-Soviet Union had given them.

If so, I think China should acknowledge this.

Obviously, China should be plowing that money back into Tibet in such a way that recognizes the Tibetans right to a share of that money. Instead, Tibetans have clearly been marginalized.

Similar things happened in the US with uranium on Indian reservations and the US government now owes a number of Indian tribes millions of dollars. But they had contracts. Treaties, and reservations. Even pennies on the dollar added up to a lot.

Anyway, its clear to me that Tibet represents a tremendous amount of energy wealth. The energy reserves may be comparable to or exceed the energy represented by the Middle East's oil.. This wealth is sort of the dirty secret underneath the Tibet situation.

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How Obama And Clinton and We All Could Win

Reading through Obama's speech the other day, I was struck by his tone. I think it was a very good speech. And I have also been thinking how really, we need to come together to address the problems of this country, together.

What I was thinking is that we really need to encourage the candidates to unify and work together.

I think that Obama should join Hillary on the ticket. I think Hillary should be at the head, because she's older and wiser in some respects, maybe, but also because she clearly can teach us all a lot about perseverance, which is a virtue we all need in this era of changing opportunity.

And I think Obama should be vice president but with an agreement between the two to give him a larger portfolio than vice presidents usually have. Obviously, he can run for President at the end of his term as VP. He would still be fairly young, as Presidents go.

This gives both of them the benefits of the other's experience, and ultimately, they both gain, and we all gain, because the two will be unstoppable. And Obama will be unstoppable for real when Hillary steps down in 2012 or 2016, if he does a good job now.

If we all just stop our petty bickering for a moment, you'll see I'm right. If neither of the candidates can accept a compromise like this, or at least suggest it, well, maybe its possible that they don't deserve to win?

But then we ALL might lose.

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A Modest Proposal

I have been thinking long and hard about the problem of college accessibility and affordability for the majority of Americans, and quite bluntly, its depressing, because with the current mortgage crisis, and the disappearing of jobs, one can't but wonder how the US will maintain its position among the developed nations without an educated populace. But where is the money to come from? We can't all have rich parents who graduated from Harvard or Princeton or Yale, or have other verifiable backgrounds, to smooth our way in and help us pay for us.

No.

And even the military is going robotic.

Money for things like college are drying up. Many people simply can't afford to go anymore. They can't and they won't be able to afford it. Even simply saving money has become very difficult. Those who have children are in a particularly cruel bind.

And the government grants of the past, things like the Social Security survivors benefit for students who had a deceased parent, and Pell Grants, are gone or increasingly inadequate.

The remainder of the money is going to the very poor, who often can't even get into colleges. That leaves the formerly middle class and 'rich poor' (those who make more than the Federal poverty line, but less than the urban 'middle class') out.

The burden on students have been supposedly taken up by increased loans. But - we all know how badly that has worked out for many students. Because many don't find jobs for a while. A four year degree just isn't worth what it used to be. (Graduate school is "the new college" they say.)

What I am about to propose MAY SHOCK some, but let me remind you that it preserves both our dignity and our lives in the face of terrible conditions.

I doubt if any of us have not seen the ads encouraging seniors to engage in "reverse mortgages".

By simply signing a few legal papers, they are ensured of an income 'for life' based on the assumption that the equity in their homes are worth money and that the firm selling them the reverse mortgage does not associate with hit men. (This has been a very real problem in Russia)

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Corporate suffrage - Should corporations -legal persons- VOTE?

Corporate suffrage?

As corporations are legal persons who enjoy free speech rights as well as the right to engage in their constritutionally protected right by buying access to democracy with their stockholders money, some are saying, that since they ARE legal persons, with the exception of never having to die, why shouldn't corporations also be given the right to vote?

Or 'corporate suffrage' as it is known and practiced in some other democracies. (I am pretty sure that some countries actually give corporations the right to vote on some level.. Hong Kong, I think, has some kind of corporate suffrage.. although I am not sure how it works..

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An idea list for Democratic candidates to explore - Comments?

I was just responding to another dairy and I thought this might make a good dairy in and of itself..

What can the Democratic candidates do to distinguish themselves from the GOP candidate? Show how the Democratic message is one of people helping each other and thriving together, economically.

Here are some ideas..

So many worthy young people are giving up on the dream of going to college because of finances and family debt. This is going to have a HUGE impact on the US economy because Americans simply won't have the skills we will need to remain leaders in the world. We need to revitalize the public education system. We also need to make it much more possible for older people to gain new skills, as well as share their skills. We are going to have tough economic times ahead and whatever we can do to help each other through them is a good thing.

People who have skills could teach courses. I don't know how this could be structured but I can tell that it would be a huge help for communities..

Also, tool lending libraries.. many towns have them.. The government could set up an office to coordinate efforts to get them into towns and then offer them support in outreach. For example, IR thermography equipment is really expensive, but a five minute walkthrough of your house in the winter can show you where your insulation isn't working. Why cant cities buy this equipment and offer people the opportunity to schedule a walkthrough when they need it.. the net result would be the saving of literally hundreds of thousands of dollars in fuel oil bills in winter and summer..

Also, tool lending libraries could help people set up gardens.. many cities have community gardens. Gardening has been shown to extend people's lives by several years. They offer a way to meet other people. They provide healthy food.

Also, child care. One of the main reasons many people have joined churches is simply that they are the only source of affordable child care centers in many areas. I don't want to say that people are desperate for child care and will do or say anything to get it but the fact of the matter is that parents need to work and many childcare options are too expensive. They NEED alternatives desperately.

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Diaries

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