Tuesday, March 29, 2005
SPAM EMAIL FROM THE WHITE HOUSE
CONGRATULATIONS! YOU HAVE BEEN CHOSEN TO RECEIVE AN APPLICATION FROM THE US GOVERNMENT FOR THE MEDICARE DRUG BENEFIT PLAN!
Just fill out the enclosed paperwork and you can spend a $250 deductible followed by a $35 per month "membership" fee. Then you can pay for 25% of you non-negotiable prescription drug prices. After you reach $2850 worth of your retail drug costs, you get to pay for 95% of the all your drug costs up to $5100.
The Bush administration is sending out some 20 million Medicare Drug applications to those who might be eligible in 42 different zip codes covering: Bristol, CT.; New York, NY; Miami, FL; Chicago, IL; Las Vegas, NV; and Honolulu, HI.
"Historically, the response rate to mailings like this among low-income people has been 1 percent or 2 percent."
-James P. Firman, president of the National Council on the Aging
"If we know you are eligible for the low-income subsidy, we will make sure that you get to take advantage of the drug benefit."
-Dr. Mark B. McClellan (Press Secretary Scott McClellan's brother) , administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services
There are so many thing wrong with that quote. First, the GAO (Government Accountability Office) says that only one percent of the people that are actually eligible actually fill out the application. So, Dr. McClellan, it appears that only one percent actually do "know" they are "eligible." Second, this "low-income subsidy" is nothing of the sort. A real "low-income subsidy" would actually save people money by allowing Medicare to bargain for better drug prices. Finally, how is the government going to make sure that these people actually get to "take advantage" of the program? The Bush administration claims that they are going to get "community groups" involved in spreading the word. Does that include all groups, or only the ones that are "Faith-based" or are involved in "abstinence only" programs? Let's face facts, the Bush administration hasn't exactly been the administration of inclusion.
By the way, most of these people couldn't receive this email that I just made up because they can't afford a PC, DSL and sometimes, even a phone line.
Condoleezza Rice wants Democratic change in the Middle East and she doesn't care if instability is the result.
It isn't as if the status quo was stable the way that it was ... The only thing the United States can do is to speak out for the values that have been absent, liberty and freedom there, and it will have to take its own course."
So now we have proof that this was the plan in Iraq all along. Throw instability into Iraq, and if Democracy occurs, so much the better.
The cavalier attitude the Bush administration has toward peace, freedom and liberty is astonishing. Either it happens on their terms or it doesn't. Ms. Rice made that abundantly clear today.
The tendency towards Democracy
is a natural human impulse that battles the minority who want power. In some
nations, Democracy will simply take longer
to arrive. Forceful intervention by outsiders, even ones that claim benevolence,
is generally wrong. Mr. Bush and the Neocons
must synchronize their priorities to reality - something that doesn't come
natural for them. Our nation is bankrupt and the economic damage must be
repaired. We simply can't afford further warfare and the resulting exercises in
(G)lobal (W)arming Bush mused
that if Americans received a quarterly
privatization statement and seen the tepid results, they might think "maybe we
ought to change presidents or something."
Mr. Bush, I don't need a quarterly privatization statement to conclude that you don't deserve to be President.
In response to the "Texas Exterminator":,
Randi Haley of Norman,
The Texas Exterminator (Delay) is going to all the papers around here with your name on it Mr. Greenberg (that's me) . You hit the nail on the head like nobody else seems to have the guts to!
My Democratic leaders are truly disappointing me, though. They are all afraid top make these obvious points. And, just like in the election, their silence makes the wrong guys right in the eyes of America.
Thanks Randi. I'm blushing -NG
Eye of Newt
In recent days, conservative authors have published articles and memos with headlines such as ''With all due respect, Mr. President, You're Wrong," along with protests that the Republican message on Social Security has become ''pay more, work longer, get less." Bush, they say, has strayed from his campaign message about the importance of private accounts in overhauling Social Security.
''I think we are in a very dangerous period on Social Security," former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich said in an interview this week, adding his voice to the growing chorus of prominent critics in the GOP. He said the president's advisers think ''they could sell benefit cuts and tax increases. . . It could be catastrophic for the Republican Party if we end up as the party of tax increases and benefits cuts."
The stakes are high for Bush. Although he has made headway in publicly explaining that Social Security is running out of money, most Democrats are united in opposition to private accounts, and some party leaders say Bush has exaggerated the system's problems. The GOP critics emphasized that they want to push Bush toward a successful plan, not undermine him.
The danger to Social Security is minuscule when compared to what President Bush is doing to Medicare with things like the Medicare drug bill. Unless overhauled, this onerous bill could end up being the final coffin nail for Medicare. Too bad AARP, Sen. Boxer and several other Democrats were not able to see this.
On another note. The Rove lie and smear machine has done it again, and again with our help and that of the media. The Repugs have successfully kept the media focused on a poor brain dead woman, and encouraged the media to put Social Security on the back burner.
Instead of hammering away at the Lipper (GW), we are now sucked into another choice vs. no choice issue in Florida.
There is an old comment which astutely advises that, "Those who fail to learn from history are doomed to repeat it.". In view of the above, and the current wave of support for John Kerry, it appears that many Dems have still not cracked the history book.
The War on Social Security - The War on the
Today's report was just the latest salvo in the GOP War on Social Security. In fact, your Social Security payments are funding a War Room based on the model the administration used during the war in Afghanistan:
The Treasury Department yesterday announced the formation of a Social Security "war room" and the hiring of three full-time employees to help coordinate and refine the administration's message on the issue. The war room, which the administration is calling the Social Security Information Center, will track lawmakers' remarks to their local news outlets, to help the White House detect signs of Republican concern or Democratic compromise. The office, modeled after the Coalition Information Centers that promoted the administration message around the world during the war in Afghanistan, will also help target speaking trips by top administration officials.
Yes, the Propaganda White House is using your money to conduct War on Social Security like they are fighting a land war in Asia.
Now this is simply despicable. When is the Lipper going to get it. This nation is in financial hot water. Get off of Social Security, get on to the trade and budget deficits already.
Charles Grassley's Flip-Flops
"What I need to hear people say is, `We expect you to fix
this,' expletive-deleted. I'm not hearing that."
-Senator Charles Grassley (R-IA), Why he FLIPS when President Bush says "Help me kill Social Security"...
"I think it's very difficult for me to say today that we'll present a bill to the president,"
-"Chuckles" Grassley, ...and why he FLOPS when he actually has to speak to the people who put him into office.
-Robert Scardapane and Noah Greenberg
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