enlargeCredit: Blue Gal
h/t The Obamacrat. Open thread below....
Families USA has released its new report, Dying for Coverage: The Deadly Consequences of Being Uninsured. It tells a grim tale. Throughout the nation, thousands of Americans die each year for one reason: They have no health insurance. In 2010, the year the study surveyed found almost 50 million Americans had no health insurance of any kind.
The organization's previous study in 2000 found that 18,000 Americans between the ages of 25 and 64 had died for lack of insurance. In 2010, situation was worse because the recession had cost millions more Americans to lose their job-connected health coverage, and even those that had jobs wound up without insurance because their stagnant wages couldn't keep up with the rapid rise in premium costs.
One statistic pried out of the report by the Campaign Justify Rates is that more Californians died for lack of health insurance than were killed in traffic accidents for 2010. Other findings:
? Across the nation, 26,100 people between the ages of 25 and 64 died prematurely due to a lack of health coverage in 2010. That works out to:
? 2,175 people who died prematurely every month;
? 502 people who died prematurely every week;
? 72 people who died prematurely every day; or
? Three every hour.
? Between 2005 and 2010, the number of people who died prematurely each year due
to a lack of health coverage rose from 20,350 to 26,100.
? Between 2005 and 2010, the total number of people who died prematurely due to a
lack of health coverage was 134,120.
? Each and every state sees residents die prematurely due to a lack of health insurance.
? In 2010, the number of premature deaths due to a lack of health coverage ranged
from 28 in Vermont to 3,164 in California.
? The five states with the most premature deaths due to uninsurance in 2010 were
California (3,164 deaths), Texas (2,955 deaths)
[Among the many reasons people die for lack of health coverage:]
? Uninsured adults are more than six times as likely as privately insured adults to go without needed care due to cost (26 percent versus 4 percent).
? Cancer patients without health insurance are more than five times more likely to delay or forgo cancer-related care because of medical costs than insured patients (27 percent versus 5 percent).
Blast from the Past. At Daily Kos on this date in 2011:
For the past year-and-a-half the megamedia and all too many other analysts have spoken about the "surge" of troops ordered into Afghanistan that President Obama announced in his West Point speech December 1, 2009. In fact, there were two surges. In March 2009, an equal number were ordered into Afghanistan. By September 2010, the number of U.S. troops had tripled from January 2009, when Obama first stepped into the Oval Office.
With a third of the troops now in Afghanistan scheduled to be home in 15 months, the obvious question is how fast will the rest be withdrawn and, in fact, whether all the rest will be withdrawn. In a background briefing by senior administration officials earlier today, much was made of a "bilateral partnership" being developed that will extend U.S. involvement beyond 2014. It was not stated whether or not this will include military involvement. However, the concept of a residual counter-terrorism force of 15,000-25,000 based in Kabul and in Kandahar has been hinted at. A counter-terrorism approach is one long backed by Vice President Joe Biden.
As Rachel Maddow pointed out on Lawrence O'Donnell tonight, the speech left many unanswered questions.
It's probably too much to hope for, but doesn't this sound like a great opportunity for some "Occupy"-style action?[...]
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Upbeat. Rockin. Whatcha listening to tonight, ma hunnies?
So the alternate reality that Jerry Sandusky constructed for himself, the one where he was a nice guy helping troubled boys, has collapsed. The justifications of his defense lawyer failed to convince a jury of his peers.
I find Jerry Sandusky less interesting than the communal culture of Penn State. There’s no place on earth that is safe from bad individuals doing bad things. There are places where bad individuals would not be able to hide in plain sight and continue to commit crimes for decades.
Penn State is not on trial, but there needs to be an examination of that institution, and all the forces in society that work against safety and justice for vulnerable people.
They are not Happy in Happy Valley tonight, because one of the most influential citizens of that bucolic area, who just happened to be a sociopath monster, was found guilty by a jury of his peers of defiling and stealing the innocence of young boys for years.
It took the jury a little over 20 hours to make official what the rest of us suspected all along: that Jerry Sandusky was a predator who preyed on innocent children thanks to a powerful institution and iconic coach who turned a blind eye to it all.
The folks of Happy Valley will go back to cheering on their beloved Nittany Lions, and they will hope that the memory of Jerry Sandusky will go away. It won't. Because, in a way, they were all found guilty tonight.
Another institution was on trial here in Philadelphia this past week, and,like Penn State, the jury found that those who represent that institution was also guilty of despicable acts.
Here in America we like to demonize and paint only certain segments of our population as evil and malevolent, and yet we worship and idolize people and institutions that are just as evil. It's only when the facade comes off that the rest of us get to see what was there all along.
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Hey, hey, hey! It's the weekend.[...]
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In the current (June 25) issue of The New Yorker, Ezra Klein has a really interesting piece that's misleadingly titled "Unpopular Mandate: Why do politicians reverse their positions?." Oh, it is about that, and quite informatively so. Ezra digs persuasively into the remarkable phenomenon whereby the universal mandate in the health care law -- as we know, originally a Republican position -- has come to be monolithically and savagely opposed by -- yes -- Republicans. He's fascinated, and understandably so, by the dizzying speed with which this transformation occurred. With regard to the question of the unconstitutionality of the individual mandate, he points out, "a legal argument that was considered fringe in 2010 had become mainstream by 2012."
But for me the individual mandate itself is almost the least important part of the story. For one thing, as Ezra notes, this process of opinion transformation doesn't concern just the individual mandate.
In 2007, both Newt Gingrich and John McCain wanted a cap-and-trade program in order to reduce carbon emissions. Today, neither they nor any other leading Republicans support cap-and-trade. In 2008, the Bush Administration proposed, pushed, and signed the Economic Stimulus Act, a deficit-financed tax cut designed to boost the flagging economy. Today, few Republicans admit that a deficit-financed stimulus can work. Indeed, with the exception of raising taxes on the rich, virtually every major policy currently associated with the Obama Administration was, within the past decade, a Republican idea in good standing.
Once Republican politicians say this is unconstitutional, it gets repeated endlessly in the partisan media that's friendly to the Republican Party [Fox News, conservative talk radio, and the like] and, because this is now the Republican Party's position, the mainstream media needs to repeatedly explain the claims to their readers. That further moves the arguments from off the wall to on the wall, because, if you're reading articles in the Times describing the case against the mandate, you assume this is a live controversy.
The fact that a judge -- even a partisan judge in a district court -- had ruled that a central piece of a Democratic President's signature legislative accomplishment was unconstitutional led the news across the country. [Actively partisan Virginia Republican District Court Judge Henry] Hudson's ruling was followed by a similar, and even more sweeping, ruling, by Judge Roger Vinson, of the Northern District of Florida. Vinson declared the entire bill unconstitutional, setting off a new round of stories. The twin rulings gave conservatives who wanted to believe that the mandate was unconstitutional more reason to hold that belief. Voters who hadn?t thought much about it now heard that judges were ruling against the Administration. Vinson and Hudson were outnumbered by other district judges who either upheld the law or threw out lawsuits against it, but those rulings were mostly ignored.
At the Washington Monthly, Steve Benen kept track of the placement that the Times and the Washington Post (where I work) gave to stories about court rulings on the health-care law. When judges ruled against the law, they got long front-page stories. When they ruled for it, they got shorter stories, inside the paper. Indeed, none of the cases upholding the law got front-page coverage, but every rejection of it did, and usually in both papers. From an editorial perspective, that made sense: the Vinson and Hudson rulings called into question the law's future; the other rulings signalled no change. But the effect was repeated news stories in which the Affordable Care Act was declared unconstitutional, and few news stories representing the legal profession's consensus that it was not. The result can be seen in a March poll by the Kaiser Family Foundation, which found that fifty-one per cent of Americans think that the mandate is unconstitutional.
These numbers should be improving every year until we reach a 50/50 ratio in both houses of Congress. There's no reason why the number of women should be as low as it is today. More on the big year for women at the Huffington Post:Women currently hold 73 of the 435 seats in the House of Representatives. Four states -- Delaware, Iowa, Mississippi and Vermont -- have never had a woman...
Susie went to Vegas! This time she went for the Right Online conservative blogger conference and along with way was able to ask about immigration! Watch Elivs ... he's all shook ... yeah.