Thursday, March 16, 2017

TrumpCare's Message to the Poor and Elderly, Just Die Already!

TrumpCare's Message to the Poor and Elderly, Just Die Already!

America is playing Russian roulette with its most vulnerable citizens and the just out Congressional Budget Office [CBO] report clearly indicates that Trumpcare's message to the poor and elderly is to just die already. [See Report]

Back in 2008, when the Affordable Care Act [ACA] commonly referred as Obamacare was being sold to the American people one of the main sales pitches of the Obama Administration was if you like your current plan and doctor you could keep them. Millions of uninsured Americans were told that the insurance under the ACA would be affordable. 

When the reality hit and some people could not keep their same plans or doctors and when the bloodsucking insurance company’s rates grew higher and higher all you heard from the Republicans was that Obama was a liar who sold the American people a huge bottle of snake oil.

No matter how you slice the pie the Obama team dropped the ball when setting up and
negotiating the ACA. The healthcare industry accounts for 20% and rising of our nation's overall economy. Yes, the website fiasco was more a "Ha Ha" moment than a substantive failure of the ACA, however; it was an indication of incompetence not making sure the servers were prepared and ready to go. It was like fumbling the ball on the opening kickoff. 

Now, with the Trump Administration and Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI) attempting to repeal
the ACA and replace it with the Republican plan we see now from the recently released CBO report that Trump's boastful claims of a better more improved plan than the ACA is just not true. Trump made claims that his plan would cover everyone. He made that claim all throughout his campaign. The CBO report says otherwise to the tune of some 26 million uninsured people by 2026 and only God himself knows how much more after. How does that in anyway make Trumpcare better? Trump also claimed that premiums were going to go down. Not true! Rates are going to go up in the short-term and for some younger people, for example, the rates will lower over a period of time but for other's like the poor and elderly the rates are going to skyrocket.

One of the biggest claims that Trump made regarding Trumpcare is that he would no ways no how touch Social Security, Medicare, or Medicaid. As of the rendition of this article, they have not touched Social Security. The same cannot be said about Medicaid. If the American Healthcare Act is put into play some 14 million Americans will lose their healthcare in the first year. Per the CBO report, that number will swell to 26 million by 2026.

American Healthcare Act Will Create a Modest Reduction of The Deficit at The Expense of the Elderly and Poor.

From the Report:

Although average premiums would increase prior to 2020 and decrease starting in 2020, CBO and JCT estimate that changes in premiums relative to those under current law would differ significantly for people of different ages because of a change in age-rating rules. Under the legislation, insurers would be allowed to generally charge five times more for older enrollees than younger ones rather than three times more as under current law, substantially reducing premiums for young adults and substantially raising premiums for older people. 
 The top 1% are basically getting a hidden tax cut. The real kick in the butt is how the American Healthcare Act affects Medicaid. Most of the 14 million people who will lose health coverage will come from both regular Medicaid and the expanded Medicaid. This will affect our poorest Americans many who are elderly and only common sense tells you this will cost lives. That's right, Trumpcare's modest deficit reduction will cost American lives and that is a tragic reality to the so-called American Healthcare Act.

What this barbaric healthcare does is take us back to a time where almost 20% of Americans will not have medical insurance. Most of these people will be poor and elderly with no means for preventive care, no means to purchase medications, they must use the Emergency Room as their primary care provider and will be saddled with huge medical bills that they will be unable to pay. Like before, the taxpayer must pick up the tab and like before your health insurance rates will soar because of this history repeating itself. The Republicans will say " Blame it on the poor folk." They're lazy!

Also, these tax credits that are being offered are a joke and meaningless to the poor and out of work Americans not due to being lazy but to our jobs being exported overseas and other jobs being replaced by other new mechanized technologies like Robots. Others will forgo health insurance from their employers because the cost will be high and their wages low.

The proposed American Healthcare Act is just another shining example of the attack on the poor, working poor, and lower middle-class Americans. Once again, we see the Oligarchs and their political establishments taking from the poor and giving to the rich. Trumpcare if passed will take 880 million dollars from Medicaid and moreover, in the long term will cut trillions of dollars in healthcare services for low-income Americans.

The indications here are clear the rich elites (not all rich people) find us poor folks a nuisance and by cutting healthcare services to finance a tax cut and slight deficit reduction Trumcare's message to the poor and elderly is, "Just Die Already."

Harvard Professor Explains Why TrumpCare Is Terrible

Written By: Johnny Hill

Friday, March 3, 2017

The Tools of Political Repression were Built by Both Democrats and Republicans.

The Tools of Political Repression were Built by Both Democrats and Republicans.

Photo Credit:
One of the biggest concerns people have about President Trump is his bombastic personally and ego having access to the nuclear codes. Of course, this is a somewhat " over the top" example but many Americans are rightfully concerned about Trump's authoritarian tendencies and how he might overstep his authority.

One of these powers is embodied in "National Defense Authorization Act," or NDAA.

Under provisions in the NDAA, the American Government can now detain anyone they claim is an enemy combatant, terrorist, spy, and what's worse they can detain them indefinitely without the right to counsel or trial. It’s important to note here that the NDAA was enacted into law by the Obama Administration in the midnight hour in 2011. The NDAA essentially permits the government to carry out acts of unimaginable civil rights violations against not only American citizens but human beings.

Basically, the NDAA says, if you support radical Islamic ideology you could be faced with the reality of being labeled an enemy of the state and face unlimited detention without " your day in court." Your rights to due process are stripped. In fact, you could end up in Guantanamo Bay detention camp!

The NDAA has been challenged by activist Chris Hedges and others, however, the Courts have upheld the NDAA as constitutional. [See Source]

There have been attempts by Hedges and others who have approached the Democratic Party leadership about excluding American citizens from the NDAA and those request fell on deaf ears.

The NDAA was written in a moment of civil unrest throughout the world. It essentially overturned the "Posse Comitatus Act."  What we have now is the military being used to quell civil disobedience. A good example is the Standing Rock protest.

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What Is the Real Reason for The National Defense Authorization Act?

For starters, "Climate Change," economic dislocation, " Black Lives Matter" and other forms of civil disobedience are a threat to the ruling elites. These factions know and see that the American populist are becoming uneasy and more aware of the tools of political repression and that unrest is intimate.

So, the ruling elites want to use the military as a tool for breaking up these ever-growing national protests on a myriad of issues. To accomplish this goal, both the Democratic Global oligarchs and the Republican Nationalist oligarchs needed a law that would allow them to do so. Hence, the NDAA.

President Obama said when he signed it [NDAA] into law he would not use it. What our research here in the House of Public Discourse has led us to is the power of political repression has been thrust upon " We the People" by judicial mandates. These mandates have overturned many of our rights to privacy, civil rights, and to our liberty and freedom.

The unlimited amounts of money that can now be used to influence eager and ready politicians with their hands out through another judicial mandate " Citizens United" has created a whole new ballgame in American democracy.

You add to this the increasing actives of the surveillance state all these powers are now in the hands of people like Donald Trump, Rudy Giuliani, John Bolton, and others.

With our society going the way of the 1920's " Robber Barons" era and wealth inequality growing daily with our jobs continuing to flow overseas and our workforce being replaced by new technology and now our rights to protest being made illegal you can best believe the Donald Trumps of the world will not hesitate to use the military against angry civilians. We have already seen it happen.

These tools of political repression were built by both the Democratic and Republican Parties. We all should be putting on our shields and armor gear to fight against these grotesques violation of our civil liberties. "Civil Disobedience" is American as baseball and apple pie. It is the only mechanism we have left to combat these powers that be. Our Democracy is not dead yet.

America has not been a fully functional democracy for some time. Most of the traditional institutions in our country can longer be considered democratic. All of them have been taken over by corporate influence peddling Mass Media, Academia, political establishments, and the lobbyist. 

What we fear the most here in the House of Public Discourse is under a Trump regime we could see these tools of political repression become even more violent. Under this authoritarian and his authoritarian follower's anyone who dissents or doesn't fall in line will be labeled a traitor, terrorist, and they will be certainly demonized. 

Right now, not next week or next year it's time for people to step out of the grip of the mainstream media narrative and the tool of political repression. It's time to break out the pitchforks folks.

Don't Push Me, I,m Close to the Edge, I,m Trying not to Lose My Head! Reminds me of a song.

Written By: Johnny Hill

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Talking Points Concerning The Green Party


Article: They’d Welcome You With Open Arms — A Case For #GreenEnter

By: Caitlin Johnstone 

1. Caitlin has floated the idea of a GreenEnter being perhaps the most energy-efficient and effectual path forward; it [idea] was relatively well-received going by the comments I’m seeing on social media, but one concern that came up a number of times from a few different readers was that the Green Party has a “branding problem” and a “stigma”, that there’s too much public perception that it’s a fringe party for hippies. This seems to be a major argument in the progressive movement for the need to create a new party or to dispense with the approach of political parties altogether.

2. I think most folks who paid close attention to corporate media’s coverage (if you can even call it that) of Jill Stein’s campaign will agree that the Green Party doesn’t have a branding problem so much as it has a corporatist propaganda problem. The deluge of deceitful smear pieces and hit jobs against Stein was deafening to anyone who supported her.

3. it’s obvious to me that literally any movement that tries to hijack the Democratic party’s progressive base will be instantly inundated by such propaganda campaigns from establishment mouthpieces like Rachel Maddow, and the more threatening they become the more aggressive, dishonest and vitriolic those campaigns will get. People don’t think of the Green Party as a fringe hippie party of stoner edge loads and commies because the party has done a poor job of getting its message out there, they think that because the neoliberal corporate media has been aggressively smearing its image since its inception to keep it marginalized and ensure the continued functionality of the one-party Dempublican extortion scheme. That’s one of the many reasons I keep talking about this revolution as first and foremost a media war; too many people severely underestimate how pervasively the corporate media is influencing the way people think and vote with its nonstop barrage of psyops upon the American psyche.

4. And be aware that they will craft their most ingenious smears to divide us on the inside. It’s easy to smear a movement from the outside, but their real genius is to use smears to fragment us on the inside. Look to the anti-science smear on Jill Stein during the general election as a prime example.

5. The other major criticism of the Green Party, which I’ve spoken to in my last article but will repeat here, is that it’s too poorly coordinated and under-funded to be a political heavy hitter. This too I attribute to the success of the corporatist propaganda machine in manipulating people’s perceptions and dissuading them from working with the only functioning party that has the refusal to accept corporate funding built into its platform, but also, the fix is easy — they just need more people. If we can win the media war with these bastards (and we can), we can bring about a GreenEnter that, if it’s sufficiently large and energized, will inevitably cause one of the two major parties to lose party viability and collapse. This influx of new Green Party members would mean a massive influx of resources and brain power; more funding, more voices in the media war, more creativity and innovation, more coordination and organization, and more quality candidates. I am here arguing that the only problem with the Green Party is that there aren’t enough people on its side, and that’s easily and immediately rectified by joining it in large numbers.

Sunday, February 19, 2017

We Can Fix America’s Corrupt Political System

We Can Fix America’s Corrupt Political System 

Just about any person you talk to today feels that our government is corrupt. That’s right, the most powerful nation on earth is eat up with corruption. More and more Americans feel our democracy is completely broken.

If you have half a brain, it's obvious why? Lobbyist write our laws. Politicians are bought and paid for corruption touches every single issue in our governance. 

What is sad is that huge segments of people in America have disenfranchised themselves from the political process thinking there's nothing we can do about it. [corruption]

This thinking is one of the biggest cancers we have in our American democracy today! When you put this corruption under the microscope it's not that politicians are breaking the laws, in fact, there are no laws in place for them to break. There are some exceptions but not many or enough. 

Right Now, Corruption Is Legal in America

This factoid is something we can fix. For example, right now it's perfectly legal for "special interest groups" to hand over humongous checks to members of Congress who regulate and write laws. There is nothing to stop these members of Congress from passing laws that favor these groups even if said laws are a detriment to our society. 

Often, we see these same politicians accepting comfy jobs with these lobbying firms. This example is just one in a million we could use. 

We Must Make Corruption Illegal!

That's why the House of Public Discourse supports the "American Anti-Corruption Act." 

The American Anti-Corruption Act (commonly referred to as the "AACA" or "Anti-Corruption Act") is a piece of model legislation designed to limit the influence of money in American politics by overhauling lobbying, transparency, and campaign finance laws. ... Stopping political bribery by overhauling lobbying and ethics laws. [Wikipedia]
The "AACA" introduces a stringent set of ethical standards. For example, if you're a senator on the Banking Committee you can't take money or gifts from banking lobbyist. 
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Also, the "AACA" mandates full transparency so " We the People" know exactly who is paying what to whom. The "AACA" changes how elections are funded. The "AACA" achieves these things without taking away anyone's right to free speech. The bi-partisan constitutional scholars who authored this act wrote it in a way to withstand any legal scrutiny.

What About Citizens United?

While a constitutional amendment to overturn Citizens United would help corral those shadowy groups like "Americans for Freedom and Jobs and More Freedom." It would not fix any of the previously-mentioned problems. We could overturn Citizens United tomorrow and bribery, extortion, conflicts of interest, all of it would still be legal.

However, this corruption does pose an opportunity for those of us who desire to see it end. We can solve these problems with one comprehensive law. Which begs the question, but how?

How do we get such a law passed? Asking Congress to do so would be like asking a " Fox to put a lock on the Henhouse." However, not all is a loss here. We can go around Congress by using the " Ballot Initiative Process." This process allows citizens to pass laws ourselves. No politicians required. All we must do is gather enough signatures that would put the "AACA" up for a public vote and we can start fixing this out of control corrupt system we know as American Democracy.

Here's the Plan

    We need a law and our research here in the House of Public Discourse finds the "American Anti-Corruption Act" a great comprehensive and common sense law to put up for a vote.
    We need to bring all Progressives, Independents, and Conservatives together and get organized for this endeavor which in fact is one of the few political issues in modern politics that has bi-partisan appeal among the electorate. This is the only way to combat both the Global and National Oligarchs that control our two-party system in the present. For example, in 2014 both the " Tea-Party," and "Progressives" teamed up to pass the first anti-corruption act. In November 2014, a bipartisan coalition of Represent.Us members in Tallahassee, Florida, put America’s first municipal Anti-Corruption Act on the ballot – and they won. Since then, voters have passed initiatives for sweeping anti-corruption reforms in more than a dozen cities and states across America. In 2016, for the first time ever, comprehensive statewide anti-corruption legislation passed in South Dakota. [See Source]

    Using the Ballot Initiative process proclaims there are some 22,000 cities across the country that we could pass locally tailored anti-corruption legislation. We have always felt here in the House of Public Discourse that solid positive change within our political system always starts from the local level.

    By starting from the local levels our efforts affect the communities we live in by protecting our schools, healthcare, resources, environment, and jobs from being sold out to special interest. Local politics matter! Also, starting at the local level builds momentum for passing legislation at the state level. 

    State Acts not only would clean up statewide corruption it would change how elections are funded. In doing so, "We the People" get clean politicians, not one's like in the present who are in the hip pocket of special interest groups. State Acts would affect federal candidates as well. Once these state laws are passed we can truly "drain the swamp," by sending a new wave of clean politicians to Washington. 

    By taking this fight against corruption to the local and state levels we can win this struggle against political corruption from the outside. And, once we have elected these fair-minded ethical politicians on the federal level we can then pass the "AACA" at the federal level.

    Some may say this is a loss cause that it's pie in the sky thinking and isn't practical.  Our response here in the House of Public Discourse to these claims is quite simple.

    • Was it pie in the sky for a band of thirteen colonies with no standing army to win a war against the strongest military power of its time?
    • Was it thought practical that slavery would be abolished?
    • Or, that woman and blacks would be allowed to vote.
    • Was it unpragmatic to think that Same Sex Marriage would be a reality in American society?
    • How many people said there would never be a person of color in the White House?

    Corruption of Influence - The History of Campaign Finance

    Written By: Johnny Hill

    Wednesday, February 15, 2017

    America's Flight From Reason

    America's Flight From Reason

    What has America's flight from reason cost us as a nation? Does any political candidate out there right or left have the intestinal fortitude to talk about ignorance as a political issue? These issues range from scientific research on Global Warming to the issues on war and peace. 

    In this ever- growing age of unreason, people seem to be focused on small personal facts as opposed to big issues. But even more than that lack of knowledge and unreason affects the way candidates speak about everything.  

    A good example is the healthcare situation in this country. It's a very important issue. All the candidate’s say it is. But, if people are not knowledgeable about how healthcare is handled in other countries how can they make a reasoned decision about how to solve our nation’s healthcare issues. If you don't have a base of knowledge to be able to compare facts about this issue how can one make an informed choice?

    How can people have a reasonable discussion about how things ought to be if they have no real knowledge of the facts?

    Our political culture reflects our general culture. In many ways, our political culture is shaped by our general culture. Our research here in the House of Public Discourse has led us to the conclusion what America really needs is an " Educator in Chief" than a " Commander in Chief." There is no quick dose of change in today's culture. Our politicians of today including Obama have failed miserably about educating the people before such changes are proposed. Cognitive Dissonance is alive and well in America. " Critical Thinking" is at a loss.

    Many American's Can't Stand or Tolerate Contradictory Opinions. Why?

    This in part is why our countries population is becoming dumber by the day. When one creates a vacuum for themselves and shuts off any evidence, facts, or contradictions from their minds the less informed they become about the issues. Studies have shown that people's attention spans in general have grown shorter and shorter over the years. Time Magazine reported in 2015 that people have shorter attention spans than a Goldfish.

    A great example how American citizens are controlled by their own cognitive dissonance is the outcry from the Christian Right and their orderly followers to have " Creationism" taught in Public School ignoring the detailed science and empirical evidence of evolution.

    In fact, only 30% of Americans in a recent poll believe every word of the Bible is true. [See Source] Which begs the question is America really a Christian nation? 

    What we are getting at here is there has been a huge failure of education in America and it's getting worse by the day. Betty DeVos ring a bell. Therefore, we support free College education for all in America no matter the cost. Because " America's Flight from Reason" is being fueled and exploited by those who not only prey on the uneducated but depend on them as well. 

    Written By: Johnny Hill

    Tuesday, February 14, 2017

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    Michael Flynn " You're Fired."

    Photo Credit: CNN. Com
    Breaking news indicates that in late January, then Acting U.S. Attorney General Sally Yates warned Donald Trump that top national security aide Michael Flynn had misrepresented his conversations with Russian officials and could be vulnerable to blackmail by Russiaposing a significant national security risk.

    Today, in the wake of Flynn's resignation amid a growing scandal, we're forced to ask: Why didn't Trump act on that information immediately? Sign the petition to call for an immediate investigation of Donald Trump.

    The American people deserve a thorough accounting of what Trump and Mike Pence knew about Flynn's dangerous interactions, when they knew it, and how else they and other administration officials are connected to Russian president Vladimir Putin, the Russian government, and Russian intelligence agencies.

    In the past few days, we also have learned that the U.S. Army has mounted its own investigation into whether Flynn accepted money from the Russian government. If he did, it would be a possible breach of the Emoluments Clause of the Constitution—which Trump himself may also be violating, according to constitutional scholars and government ethicist.

    The Emoluments Clause Explained!

    Rep. Nadler's resolution of inquiry looks almost prescient in light of the current revelations, as it specifically demands that the Department of Justice provide information related to "any criminal or counterintelligence investigation targeting President Donald J. Trump, National Security Advisor Michael Flynn, Paul Manafort, Carter Page, Roger Stone, or any employee of the Executive Office of the President."

    Listen to our first House Podcast that touches on this issue and others.