Thursday, 26 December 2013

OBAMACARE AND TEEN EXPLOITATION

Ken Berwitz

Several days ago it came out that the teenage daughter of New York City's incoming Mayor, Bill de Blasio, has suffered from bouts of depression and drug use. 

This obviously is not a happy story, it is not related to whether Mr. de Blasio will or will not be a good mayor, and I declined to blog about it.

Until now.

Two things put Chiara de Blasio's problems into this blog:  one is the video de Blasio's people released on Tuesday, which details her problems.  And the other is that Gil Kerlikowske, the Obama administration's Director of National Drug Policy, decided to exploit Ms. de Blasio's troubles in a last-ditch effort to sell ObamaCare.

Excerpted from from Jose Delreal's article in Tuesday's New York Post:

The White House drug policy director on Tuesday commended Chiara de Blasio, the 19-year-old daughter New York City Mayor-elect Bill de Blasio, for opening up about her struggles with depression and substance abuse and for her decision to seek treatment.

In addition to applauding Chiara de Blasio, Kerlikowske also pointed to provisions in the Affordable Care Act that expand mental health coverage.

"[B]y expanding access to treatment to millions through the Affordable Care Act, we'll be giving many more a chance to follow Chiara's footsteps," the statement read. "By giving the millions of Americans in recovery a voice, were making real progress to end discrimination, stigma, and other obstacles to recovery that hinder our ability to make America healthier and stronger."

Is this really necessary?  Is putting an obviously troubled teenage girl's emotional and substance abuse problems really necessary to "sell" ObamaCare? 

Does anyone really believe Chiara de Blasio was a willing party to this?  And for those who do, please explain why, if she was so hot to go public with her problems, she didn't do so until now, at the exact end of the ObamaCare enrollment period when it might have been helped to suck in a few more sign-ups.

To me, this is exploitation of the first order.  The Obama administration should be ashamed of itself for using this teenager as fodder for its agenda.  That goes triple for the de Blasio team. 

And if Bill de Blasio and his wife knew this was being done but allowed it anyway, that goes 100 times for them.


THE OBAMA DRAG

Ken Berwitz

In September of 1927, the Musical "Good News" opened on Broadway to excellent reviews.  One of its most popular songs was "The Varsity Drag" - which spawned a dance craze that lasted for years.

In October of 2013, ObamaCare opened in the USA to disastrous reviews.  It apparently has spawned "The Obama Drag" which, if the polls are any indication, is bringing  down the Democrat Party - maybe also for years.

Here is the latest indication of what this is doing to the President and his party, via excerpts from CNN political editor Paul Steinhauser's latest article: 

Democrats have lost their advantage and Republicans now have a slight edge in the battle for control of Congress, according to a new national poll.

A CNN/ORC International survey released Thursday also indicates that President Barack Obama may be dragging down Democratic congressional candidates, and that the 2014 midterm elections are shaping up to be a low-turnout event, with only three in 10 registered voters extremely or very enthusiastic about voting next year.

Two months ago, Democrats held a 50%-42% advantage among registered voters in a generic ballot, which asked respondents to choose between a Democrat or Republican in their congressional district without identifying the candidates.

But the Democratic lead evaporated, and a CNN poll a month ago indicated the GOP holding a 49%-47% lead. The new survey, conducted in mid-December, indicates Republicans with a 49%-44% edge over the Democrats.

Another GOP advantage is the President's standing with the public: 55% of registered voters say that they are more likely to vote for a congressional candidate who opposes the President than one who supports him and four in 10 say they are likely to vote for a candidate who supports Obama.

"Those kind of numbers spelled early trouble for the Democrats before the 1994 and 2010 midterms, and for the GOP before the 2006 elections," Holland said.

If you read the entire article, you will find that Steinhauser, being a good CNNer, also spends a considerable amount of time trying to sell the premise that, despite these numbers, Democrats are not in as bad shape as it appears.  Frankly, he is not very convincing.

Look I acknowledge the elections are a long way off and anything can happen.  However, at this moment it appears that not only is ObamaCare an unmitigated disaster, but the things that will happen, ObamaCare-wise, between now and the mid-term elections - e.g. the corporate mandates, currently delayed for a year but imminent during the election season, which are almost certain to put tens of millions more out of insurance policies they currently have and into the ObamaCare mess - are virtually guaranteed to make things worse for Democrats, not better.

Stay tuned.  At the very least, I guarantee it will be interesting.


REAL RACISM (CONT.): THE "KNOCKOUT GAME"

Ken Berwitz

As you may be aware, "the knockout game" - a sick, grisly "game" in which someone tries to knock an innocent unsuspecting person out with one punch - has become something of an epidemic in certain parts of the country.  It is almost always "played" by young Black men against White people, male and female both.  There have been numerous serious injuries caused by this "game" and, even more horrifically, a number of deaths.  

But none of this has been racial, you see.  No need for the eric holder Department of Justice to intercede.  Until now.

Now is has become racial.

Let me explain, via the following excerpts from Stephan Dinan's article in today's Washington Times:

Federal authorities said Thursday they have arrested and charged a Texas man in connection with the "knockout game," accusing him of a hate crime for targeting a black man for a vicious street attack.

Most knockout victims that have appeared in news reports have been white, but the Justice Department said in this instance the victim was a 79-year-old black man, and stepped in with federal charges.

"Suspected crimes of this nature will simply not be tolerated," said Kenneth Magidson, the U.S. attorney for the southern district of Texas. "Evidence of hate crimes will be vigorously investigated and prosecuted with the assistance of all our partners to the fullest extent of the law."

The "game" has spawned a fierce debate since many of the reported victims have been white and their assailants have been black, but hate crimes charges have been all but non-existent.

All those Black on White "knockout games", including fatal ones, and not a racial incident among them.  But one White on Black incident, and the weight of eric holder's Department of Justice comes down full force. 

Imagine that.

Does anyone still wonder why people refer to the DOJ under eric holder as the Department of Just-Us?  Maybe this latest demonstration will wake them up.

Real racism. It comes in all forms, from all sources. No group is immune to it, or from it. Certainly not the Department of Justice under this country's racist Attorney General, eric holder. 

And what about the President who stands by him, time after time?  You make your own judgment.


THE LITTLE FIDDLE

Ken Berwitz

As you may know, a remake of The Secret Life Of Walter Mitty, based on a 1939 short story by James Thurber, is currently in theaters.  I have not seen it and have no opinion on how good or bad it is.

But I do have an opinion of the original (1947) movie, starring the transcendentally great Danny Kaye, Virginia Mayo and Boris Karloff.  It was an absolute joy.  And, though dated by today's standards, it remains enormously entertaining even now. 

Happily, the original is on Turner Classic Movies (TCM) tonight at 8PM.  I heartily recommend it.

My favorite part?  When Kaye does "The Little Fiddle" - which not only will put a smile on your face and keep it there, but have you shaking your head in amazement that any human being can make Kaye's sounds, facial expressions, etc. during the performance  - especially at the end, when it is at breakneck speed.

If you can't catch the movie, then do yourself a favor and click here for The Little Fiddle scene.  Best 5 minutes you'll spend today.


OBAMACARNAGE: THE HIDDEN TAXES

Ken Berwitz

We've talked about these before, but now that ObamaCare has brought in as many sucke...er, informed citizens as it is going to for January coverage (assuming the web site worked and recognizes they signed up, that is), it is time to rehash the hidden taxes.

Excerpted from S. A Miller and Geoff Earle's article in yesterday's New York Post:

The new taxes and fees include a 2 percent levy on every health plan, which is expected to net about $8billion for the government in 2014 and increase to $14.3 billion in 2018.

There's also a $2 fee per policy that goes into a new medical-research trust fund called the Patient Centered Outcomes Research Institute.

Insurers pay a 3.5 percent user fee to sell medical plans on the HealthCare.gov Web site.

Americans also will pay hidden taxes, such as the 2.3 percent medical-device tax that will inflate the cost of items such as pacemakers, stents and prosthetic limbs.

Those with high out-of-pocket medical expenses also will get smaller income-tax deductions.

Americans are currently allowed to deduct expenses that exceed 7.5 percent of their annual income. The threshold jumps to 10 percent under ObamaCare, costing taxpayers about $15 billion over 10 years.

Then theres the new Medicare tax.

Under ObamaCare, individual tax filers earning more than $200,000 and families earning more than $250,000 will pay an added 0.9 percent Medicare surtax on top of the existing 1.45 percent Medicare payroll tax. They'll also pay an extra 3.8 percent Medicare tax on unearned income, such as investment dividends, rental income and capital gains.

Remember the promise that ObamaCare will save the average family $2,500 a year?  If anyone can find that average family, please let me know.

ObamaCare is an unworkable monstrosity - one that this administration has lied to us about every way it could think of.  And when you combine disastrous policy, dishonest presentation and a raft of new taxes that so many citizens have yet to come in contact with (wait until the premium statements go out), this is what you get.

DNC Chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz assures us that Democrats will proudly run on ObamaCare during the 2014 midterm elections.  Nancy Pelosi assures us that ObamaCare in its current form is "glorious".  Let me assure you that, if Sigmund Freud were alive today, he would happily do pro bono sessions with anyone who believes anything these frauds say.

free, Ken, you mention the statements, I thought I read that only one company in one state was listing the fees and taxes on the statement. (12/26/13)


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