Health Reform

10 Major New Health Reform Benefits Take Effect Today

Huffington Post

Major new health reform benefits take effect today to help keep health insurance companies accountable, lower health care costs, guarantee more health care choices, and enhance the quality of health care for all Americans.

Starting today, insurers will be required to:

  • Keep you covered when you get sick: Simple mistakes or typos will no longer be grounds for insurance companies to cancel your insurance.
  • Cover kids with pre-existing conditions: Your kids can no longer be denied health coverage just because they have a pre-existing condition like hay fever, asthma, or previous sports injuries. This protection extends to all plans, except “grandfathered” plans in the individual market.
  • Allow young adults to stay on their parents’ plan up to age 26: Even if their first few jobs don’t provide health benefits, your kids can still remain covered by your insurance.
  • Remove lifetime limits: You will no longer need to worry about your health insurer limiting the amount of coverage available through their plan if you face an expensive medical condition. This will help Americans who develop chronic conditions from taking drastic measures to avoid medical bankruptcy.
  • Phase out annual limits: Many plans include annual dollar limits on how much medical coverage can be obtained per year. On all non-“grandfathered” plans in the individual market, these limits will be phased out over the next three years.

For any insurance plan that goes into effect after September 23, 2010, your insurance company must:

Many other new benefits of the law have already taken effect, including rebate checks for seniors in the donut hole and tax credits for small businesses. Keep watching, as more rights, protections and benefits for Americans are on the way now through 2014.


GOP ‘Pledge’ Embraces Radical ‘Tenther’ View of Constitution

Think Progress

After President Obama took office, a number of GOP officials and candidates embraced “tentherism,” the radical belief that everything from Medicare to Social Security to unemployment insurance to belonging to the United Nations violates the Constitution. Until today, however, it’s been an open question whether the GOP as a whole would embrace this absurd viewpoint, or whether they would leave tenther rhetoric to fringe figures such as Michele Bachmann, Joe Miller or Sharron Angle.

Today’s release of the Republican “Pledge to America,” however, eliminates any doubt regarding the GOP’s stance on tentherism.  As two passages from the Pledge make clear, the constitutional lunatics are now in charge of the GOP’s asylum.  The first passage is a pledge to read the Constitution as a tenther document:

We pledge to honor the Constitution as constructed by its framers and honor the original intent of those precepts that have been consistently ignored – particularly the Tenth Amendment, which grants that all powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the states, are reserved to the states respectively, or to the people.

This notion that the framers had some special understanding of the Tenth Amendment which is being “consistently ignored” is classic tentherism. Tentherism’s creation myth harkens back to a more than 200 year-old debate between James Madison and Alexander Hamilton over whether the federal government can spend money on matters not specifically mentioned in the Constitution. Tenther mythology teaches that Madison’s narrow view of federal power — a view which tenthers understand to mean that, because the Constitution does not mention health care, Medicare is unconstitutional — was fully embraced by the framers and thus we are bound by it today.  Continue reading…

President Obama · Sarah Palin

Palin calls Obama ‘Barack Hussein’

This woman is really pushing it with me.  I believe her supporters know that she’s as racist as many of them appeared to be during her 2008 campaign when they were interviewed by reporters while waiting on line to see her and hear her speak their language.  She hasn’t failed them yet. 

Obviously she’s pandering to that same base and to the GOP which has embraced this kind of rhetoric.  Frankly, it’s sickening and it’s devisive…


Sarah Palin and John McCain chastised their supporters in 2008 who used the president’s full name – Barack Hussein Obama – in a derisive tone.

Now it appears the former Alaska governor did just that.

In an interview with Fox News’ Greta Van Susteren Wednesday, Palin said the “lamestream media” is asking more questions about Delaware Senate candidate Christine O’Donnell’s background than it ever did about “Barack Hussein Obama.”

“Funny… that we are learning more about Christine O’Donnell and her college years, her teenage years, and her financial dealings than anybody even bothered to ask about Barack Hussein Obama as a candidate and now as our president,” Palin said.

When a Florida sheriff who was introducing then-candidate Palin in 2008 also referred to the Democratic nominee for president as “Barack Hussein Obama,” a Palin spokesperson quickly issued a statement condemning the remarks.

“We do not condone this inappropriate rhetoric which distracts from the real questions of judgment, character, and experience that voters will base their decisions on this November,” the spokesperson said then.

Of course, referring to the president’s full name is on its face not a slur. But critics of the usage have long suggested detractors who use the president’s full name are doing so to suggest the president is something other than American.

Sarah Palin

Sarah Palin’s Top 10 Tea Party Mama Grizzlies (Satire By DC Douglas)

D.C. Douglas – lancebaxter’s Channel

A Sarah Palin 2010 Mid-Term Voter’s Guide! Pass it on to any upstanding Christian American voter you know!

Once again, D.C. Douglas lends a helping hand to the Tea Party… Because he cares so.

U.S. Politics

Tea Party Truth Squad video of the day – TEA PARTY ECONOMIC BRAINTRUST: Nit Wits & Hypocrites

Crooks & Liars


Yep, They Did It…

TPM Editors Blog

Sen. Chambliss’s office has determined that yep, it was one of his staffers who posted the “All Fa–ots Must Die” comment on the Joe.My.God website just after Senate Republicans prevented a vote on repealing DADT.

TPM Muckraker

Sen. Chambliss’ Office Says It Was Source Of ‘Fa–ots Must Die’ Comment

The office of Sen. Saxby Chambliss (R-GA) has admitted that an anti-gay comment left on a gay rights blog this week came from the senator’s office, though it has not determined who actually posted it, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports.

As TPM previously reported, soon after a Senate vote to block debate on the repeal of ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,’ someone wrote “All faggots must die” on the blog of gay rights advocate Joe Jervis. Other commenters traced the origin of the comment to a IP address located in Atlanta, Georgia, near the offices of both of the state’s senators. Chambliss’ office then said it was investigating the matter.

Today, the AJC‘s Bob Keefe received a statement from Chambliss’ office confirming that the posted comment did in fact come from one of his offices:

U.S. Sen. Saxby Chambliss’ office has determined it was indeed the source of a highly publicized homosexual-bashing slur on an Internet site.But in a statement, Chambliss’ office said it has not discovered exactly who was behind the slur, and has turned the matter over to the Senate Sergeant At Arms.

“The (Sergeant at Arms) has worked side by side with our personnel to determine whether the comment in question emanated from our office. That appears to be the case,” an unsigned statement from Chambliss’ press office read.

“There has not been a determination as to who posted the comment,” the statement read. “That part of the review is ongoing, and is now in the hands of the Senate Sergeant at Arms.”

The senator’s office did not immediately return TPM’s phone call seeking comment.

Facebook · Mark Zuckerberg

Friended for $100 Million

Wall Street Journal Facebook Founder Zuckerberg to Establish Foundation to Help Newark Schools

Mark Zuckerberg, the 26-year-old founder and chief executive of Facebook Inc., plans to announce a donation of up to $100 million to the Newark schools this week, in a bold bid to improve one of the country’s worst performing public school systems.

Newark spends about $22,000 a year on each of its 40,000 pupils, but only about half of its students graduate. Of those who do, only one-fifth go on to four-year colleges. More than 85% of the Newark students at community colleges need remedial help in math and English.

The state took control of the troubled Newark system in the 1990s, and this month Gov. Chris Christie informed the city’s superintendent that his contract wouldn’t be renewed after June 2011. Mr. Christie has vowed to implement forceful changes, portending an agenda that includes stronger teacher evaluations and merit pay.

Mr. Zuckerberg is setting up a foundation with $100 million of Facebook’s closely held stock to be used to improve education in America, with the primary goal of helping Newark.

Mr. Zuckerberg has had a long-standing interest in education, particularly teachers’ low salaries, according to a person familiar with the discussions. Over the last year, he had a series of meetings with people involved in education and developed a relationship with Newark Mayor Cory Booker.        Continue reading…


Ted Kennedy Jr. Demands Linda McMahon Pull JFK Ads

Huffington Post

A nephew of the late President John F. Kennedy is asking Connecticut’s Republican candidate for Senate, Linda McMahon, to pull her political advertisement featuring the former president talking about tax cuts, saying it is misleading to voters.

The two-page letter from Edward M. Kennedy Jr., obtained by The Associated Press on Wednesday, says McMahon “distorts the legacy of President Kennedy in order to mislead voters into thinking” that he would have supported her position on tax policy.

“Using President Kennedy’s image in your ad gives your tax position false legitimacy,” writes Kennedy, who lives in Connecticut. “I hope that you will also offer a retraction statement that clarifies the distinction between my uncles’s policies and your own.”

The 30-second spot has only appeared so far on McMahon’s YouTube channel, where it was originally posted Sept. 16. A campaign spokesman said the ad will remain on YouTube. He did not rule out running it eventually on television.

“Kennedy proposed across-the-board tax cuts because he recognized that a high tax ‘reduces the financial incentives for personal effort, investment and risk-taking,'” said spokesman Ed Patru, spokesman quoting the former president. “That was the case 47 years ago, and it’s the case today.”

The ad features grainy footage from 1963 of Kennedy discussing the economic importance of tax cuts, saying “every dollar released from taxation that is spared or invested would help create a new job.” It ends with the words “A good idea then, a better idea now.”   Continue reading…

GOP Agenda · GOP Folly · GOP Hubris · GOP Leadership Quagmire · GOP Pledge to America

GOP ‘Pledge’ Underwhelms

The GOP has released their new “contract for America” entitled “Pledge to America”.   Here is a look at what some of the news outlets are saying:


The new “Pledge to America” is unlikely to inspire the nation, but Republicans will win big in November even without a coherent, forward-looking platform.

Huffington Post

The “Pledge to America,” circulated to GOP lawmakers Wednesday, emphasizes job creation and spending control, as well as changing the way Congress does business. It steered clear of controversial issues such as Social Security and Medicare, big drivers of deficit spending.

Daily Kos

Tonight, CNN contributor Erick Erickson of RedState, The Republican’s answer to the Daily Kos and its founder Markos Moulitsas just tore apart and ripped into shreds the House GOP’s new plan to be unveiled tomorrow… “Pledge To America.” This is the GOP’s pathetic attempt to recapture  Newt Gingrich’s 1994 “Contract With America” which failed miserably and has been aptly renamed “Contract On America.”…


Republican ‘Pledge to America’: Spending caps, tax cuts…
U.S. Politics

Embattled bishop to make statement regarding allegations of sexual coercion

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  • This is actually a case of retaliation and a shakedown for money by men with some serious credibility issues.
    –Art Franklin, pastor’s spokesman
  • Eddie Long is planning a Thursday news conference, a spokesman says

Atlanta, Georgia (CNN) — Atlanta-based megachurch pastor Eddie Long, accused of coercing young men into sexual relationships, will go on radio and make a statement Thursday following civil lawsuits a spokesman has termed a “shakedown” for money.

Long’s appearances will follow Wednesday’s filing of another lawsuit, in DeKalb County, Georgia, State Court. It was brought on behalf of Jamal Parris, now 23, who was a teenager at the time he joined Long’s church.

The suit, which claims Long encouraged Parris to call him “Daddy,” also names the church and a youth academy as defendants.

Allegations that Long coerced young male church members and employees into sex are “a case of retaliation and a shakedown for money by men with some serious credibility issues,” Art Franklin, the pastor’s spokesman, said Wednesday.

Long “categorically and adamantly denies these allegations,” Franklin said. “There’s been a lot of chatter since yesterday, but these complaints that have been filed are definitely without merit.”

Long will make a statement Thursday morning, he said. Long’s attorney and supporters are expected to stand with him.

Syndicated columnist and CNN political analyst Roland Martin said on Twitter that he will talk with Long at 7:15 a.m. ET Thursday on “The Tom Joyner Morning Show,” a syndicated radio program.

Continue reading…