Hill Staffers Get an Obamacare Fix

For the last several months, congressional staffers wondered if they’d be forced to buy into Obamacare’s insurance exchanges, as the law says they must, and if they’d take a hefty compensation cut as a result. Now we know: They’ll get their insurance from Obamacare’s insurance exchanges. But they won’t be required to pay full price—or even the full price minus whatever subsidies they might qualify for.

That’s because the Office of Personnel Management (OPM), which handles benefits issues for Hill staffers, has decided to allow congressional staffers to put the same employer contribution they get toward their current plans toward the purchase of health plans bought on the exchanges, according to Politico.

Coverage of the issue up until now has tended to focus on the question of whether congressional staffers would be “exempt” from Obamacare. I never thought that was quite the right way to understand it: Staffers weren’t looking to be exempt from the whole law, but from one provision that specifically affected, and complicated, their own lives.

The health law’s defenders, in turn, argued that it wasn’t fair to create a special class of individuals who have to give up their employer coverage, and the tax-protected contribution toward that coverage’s cost, in order to buy from the exchanges. But OPM’s decision creates a different sort of special class: A tiny group of federal employees allowed to put their employer’s existing coverage contribution toward plans bought through Obamacare’s exchanges.

In other words, Hill staffers were irritated by a provision of the health law that would have cost them money. And they got a bureaucratic fix to make the problem go away. Most Americans frustrated by some specific provision in Obamacare, on the other hand, won’t be so lucky. 

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  • ||

    In other words, Hill staffers were irritated by a provision of the health law that would have cost them money. And they got a bureaucratic fix to make the problem go away.

    Well of course they did. To think this wasn't going to happen would have been nigh on delusional. Remember, they're better than you. Suck it, peasant.

  • Marshall Gill||

    This only fixes a part of the problem, even for the Lords of Court. Cost isn't the only area where ObamaCarousel will effect people. Congressional staffers might not have to pay as much, but they can soon expect the same crappy care that everyone else is mandated.

    If your procedure isn't on the list, or the list is months or years long, you are going to get fucked, no matter what it costs you.

    You think the High Lords of Brittan or Canada get good treatment for free? It is free and they get for what they pay.

  • ||

    The High Lords of Canada fly to the US or elsewhere for their treatment, and the High Lords of Britain go to private hospitals that are not NHS and are high quality (Canada does not allow private hospitals, the UK does).

  • Paul.||

    (Canada does not allow private hospitals, the UK does).

    I believe Canada liberalized it's laws on that after their own Supreme Court ruled against their own system. If it weren't friday and I weren't thinking about my weekend shooting up in Snoqualmie, I'd google it. Suck it!

  • Tanya||

    Acute or typical GP-esque care can only be delivered by the gov't funded doctors/hospitals/clinics. Elective stuff like plastic surgery is private.

    Our system sucks. I have a chronic progressive nasty disease that includes multiple brain and spinal tumours and so I'm one of the "lucky" ones that can see a surgeon/neurologist within a few of **months** of referral. Some poor sap with a herniated disc would wait upwards of two years.

    If you're going to get sick in Canada, you need to get real fucking sick.

  • Calidissident||

    I thought it was the other way around?

  • Greg F||

    You think the High Lords of Brittan or Canada get good treatment for free?

    I live 20 miles from the Canadian border and worked for a Canadian company for a while. Having known a lot of Canadians I can tell you there is a 2 tiered system where the 'connected' get treated differently than the peasants do.

  • Sevo||

    "Having known a lot of Canadians I can tell you there is a 2 tiered system where the 'connected' get treated differently than the peasants do."

    An acquaintance is an ex-pat Cnd MD. Quite a bit of his family lives in Cnd, and when they need medical treatment, they call him and he calls 'a guy' who makes sure they don't wait in line.
    Yes, the difference is who you know rather than what you can pay. I prefer the latter; sucking up isn't one of my better skills.

  • Paul.||

    Suck it, peasant.

    Everyone is always telling me to suck it. Suck what?

  • AlmightyJB||

    Bea Arthur's dick of course.

  • Warrren||

    It's like they have pull or something.

  • Paul.||

    It's like they have pull or something.

    More like 'tug'.

  • Fatty Bolger||

    That’s because the Office of Personnel Management (OPM), which handles benefits issues for Hill staffers, has decided to allow

    How nice of them. So, is this even legal? Oh, right, who gives a shit any more. It's legal because they did it, right?

  • Sevo||

    "So, is this even legal?"

    Well, it was acclaimed through a royal decree, and Congress says 'well, OK', so...

  • Gozer the Gozerian||

    It has gotten to the point that I use this regularly, but...

    Princeps legibus solutus est.

  • Hyperion||

    Legal? WTF is that? Laws are for the peasants, not the elite and their minions.

  • Palin's Buttplug||

    the same employer contribution they get toward their current plans toward the purchase of health plans bought on the exchanges

    Privatization of federal employee health benefits - gotta like that.

  • Marshall Gill||

    A 2000 page law with thousands of pages of regulations is "privatization"?

    Perhaps you could increase your IQ with a full frontal lobotomy. It certainly couldn't hurt.

  • Palin's Buttplug||

    The participants of the health insurer exchange are all private companies who price as they see fit - thus the privatization.

    This same model should be used for Medicare.

  • Hyperion||

    So, by your logic, everyone who makes 100k or more, is getting a 75% subsidy, right?

  • Sevo||

    Palin's Buttplug| 8.2.13 @ 7:48PM |#
    "The participants of the health insurer exchange are all private companies who price as they see fit - thus the privatization."

    OK, the question is whether shreek really bleeves this bit of bullshit, or whether he's dumb enough to hope we will.
    I'm leaning toward "both".

  • Palin's Buttplug||

    Sevo, smarter H&R posters than you debated me on this very subject and lost.

  • Fatty Bolger||

    Guess he is that dumb, then.

  • Sevo||

    Palin's Buttplug| 8.2.13 @ 8:11PM |#
    "Sevo, smarter H&R posters than you debated me on this very subject and lost."

    For starters, there's no way you'd ever recognize intelligence.
    And then you're suggesting it's not both? So which is it? A raging ignoramus hoping to fool others? Or someone stupid enough to bleeve that crap?

  • sgs||

    "Sevo, smarter H&R posters than you debated me on this very subject and lost."

    That never happened.

    In fact, you got shut the fuck up and ran off as I recall.

    In fact, it got to the point that you were repeating things that had already been debunked and screaming "idiot" and "I WIN" which is of course, how it was clear you knew you took in in the ass on that one.

  • sgs||

    "Palin's Buttplug| 7.29.13 @ 11:56AM |#

    I said they "set their own prices" you fucking idiot."

    Followed by

    "Palin's Buttplug| 7.29.13 @ 12:19PM |#

    Nope, RC is wrong again. Insurers may raise premiums 10% without approval."

    At which point you ran and hid because you had contradicted your initial point and knew it.

  • ||

    You are a fucking retard.

  • ||

    It would be an improvement if they killed Medicare and put all the patients onto the exchanges. I'll give you that.

  • Almanian!||

    It would be an improvement if they killed all the patients and left both Medicare and the exchanges intact.

    Oh, wait...

    /death panelist

  • Palin's Buttplug||

    Thanks, Hazel, because that is where we are going. Medicare is the costliest beast and private exchanges are the solution.

  • Acosmist||

    I was amused in law school to hear people say the economic crisis was caused by an unregulated securities market. If it's unregulated, why the hell am I carrying these enormous books of regulations to my two classes on securities law?!

  • Gozer the Gozerian||

    This is where my lefty friends are a cut above the typical shit-fucks: "Under-regulated."

  • Invisible Finger||

    Impossible. He's already a brain donor. Terry Schaivo carried a discussion better.

  • Palin's Buttplug||

    So you would be opposed to taking Medicare and subcontracting it out to private delivery companies who give the recipients a choice on which insurer they want as provider?

  • Sevo||

    Palin's Buttplug| 8.2.13 @ 8:02PM |#
    "So you would be opposed to taking Medicare and subcontracting it out to private delivery companies who give the recipients a choice on which insurer they want as provider?"

    Yes.
    I'd prefer it go bust quickly and with no taint from idiots like you that it was a 'market failure'.

  • Sevo||

    BTW, shreek:
    "In San Francisco, businesses with 50 or fewer workers will be able to pick a level of coverage from a standardized set of benefits. Their employees will then select from among four insurers"

    That's four, not two, but not within hailing distance of 13.
    Four.
    http://www.sfgate.com/health/a.....702323.php

  • Palin's Buttplug||

    Yes, the number of statewide insurers (13?) in California is deceptive because several of them are regional-only providers.

    I concede that point (not that I ever denied it).

  • Sevo||

    "(not that I ever denied it)."

    Bullshit.

  • NotAnotherSkippy||

    Um, they already do that. It's called Medicare Advantage which Obamacare explicitly goes after to "save" money. So much for privatization...

  • Palin's Buttplug||

    Obama removed MA subsidies.

    I am against unearned subsidies (any subsidy really).

    If you support taxpayer funded subsidies you have no business on this board.

  • Sevo||

    Palin's Buttplug| 8.2.13 @ 9:06PM |#
    "Obama removed MA subsidies."

    Those cherries won't get picked if dipshit doesn't get his butt in gear!

  • Marshall Gill||

    If you support taxpayer funded subsidies you have no business on this board.

    WTF do you think ObamaCarousel is? Just because the Congress wrote the act swearing it wasn't a tax, and then Roberts pulled the Penaltax out of his ass, how in the fuck do you think these exchanges are going to be funded? Government coerced "premiums" are still, for all intents and purposes, taxes.

    By your own standard you have no fucking business on this board. Don't let the door hit you on your way out.

  • Drake||

    Congress didn't write this piece of shit - Hill Staffers did. They, above all others should suffer the full consequences of their fuckery.

  • ||

    Sadly, the term "privatization" has come to mean "crony-capitalization".

  • ||

    ^THIS. There were no pro-market reforms involved here. While the legwork may have been placed on private insurers, but they're essentially acting as government functionaries by the time you account for the regulation and protected markets.

  • Palin's Buttplug||

    You can say the same about electric utilities then.

    Yet no one denies that they are private and profitable.

    We will have a wider range of insurers to choose from than electric providers.

  • Sevo||

    Palin's Buttplug| 8.2.13 @ 9:09PM |#
    "Yet no one denies that they are private and profitable."

    People with brains separate gov't supported monopolies from private business, but that means you won't see the difference.

  • ||

    Oh electric utilities are DEFINITELY crony-capitalist.

    They are usually local monopolies or near monopolies. Pricing is heavily regulated by state or local entities.
    Their profits are pretty much guaranteed by local regulators.

    Electric utilities never go out of business except in say California, when the government forbade them from signing long-term contracts with power plants. And that was an "experiment" in privatization.

  • Palin's Buttplug||

    Oh electric utilities are DEFINITELY crony-capitalist.

    Of course they are. And how is that working out? Shareholders love it as do consumers.

  • Marshall Gill||

    Shareholders love it as do consumers.

    Consumers love not having multiple choices?

    This may be one of the most stupid things you have ever said. I keep thinking, "he could never be more stupid than last time" and you constantly prove me wrong.

    Your belief that you are knowledgeable has got to be one of the most hilarious absurdities I have ever heard.

  • ||

    Except those consumers who would like lower rates for their electricity but can't get it because the state sets prices.

    Fuck you're stupid.

  • VG Zaytsev||

    Palin's Buttplug| 8.2.13 @ 9:53PM |#

    Oh electric utilities are DEFINITELY crony-capitalist.

    Of course they are. And how is that working out? Shareholders love it..

    Which is the whole point of cronyism, dumbfuck.

  • Teaching Student||

    Yep, we love the fucking retro-active rate hikes.

  • DblEagle||

    This morning the Honolulu paper reported that the state determined how to help fund the exchange that is to "assist" under Obamacare. If you purchase a policy through the exchange you pay a surcharge of 2% to pay for the "assistance." Because it helps people to charge them extra while restricting their choices.

  • Paul.||

    Privatization of federal employee health benefits - gotta like that.

    If only we could all privatize our healthcare.

    *sigh*

  • Paul.||

    Obamacare, ideas so good federal workers are exempt.

  • Gozer the Gozerian||

    The Guardians have different souls, desires, and purposes than those of the bronze people. The laws are, naturally, different for them.

    In other words, "Get back to being moderate, peasant."

  • Sevo||

    Or:
    'Obamacare, ideas so good everyone wants to be exempt.'

  • Pro Libertate||

    That's it. That's the solution. Instead of defunding or repealing, Congress should simply revise the law to make everyone exempt.

  • Sevo||

    "Congress should simply revise the law to make everyone exempt."

    Or the court could just decree it!

  • Pro Libertate||

    Indeed! A reversopenaltax.

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    Couldn't the federal government simply have issued themselves a waiver?

  • ||

    Some animals are more equal than others.

  • Gozer the Gozerian||

    Truly, I cannot tell the difference between pigs and pigs.

  • ||

    The pigs you'd find in a barnyard are intelligent creatures that provide a valuable source of food for mankind. They don't harm anyone.

    The pigs in DC, on the other hand...

  • Gozer the Gozerian||

    Are you advocating humanitarianism of the political variety?

    I must say that, although I like the idea in theory, they mostly look tough and sinewy...

  • Hyperion||

    I'm starting to get just a little bit pissed off at our government.

    I think I'll have another beer while my hot and sour soup simmers...

  • AlmightyJB||

    What's funny (or probably sad) is that this article didn't piss me off as much because I would have been shocked had this not happen. I'm starting to get numb. I need to take a break from here for a while.

  • AlexInCT||

    The problem isn't you being here, I guarantee you....

  • ||

    It's "unfair" to create a special class of individuals who can't get employer-based health insurance, is it? Isn't it "unfair" that employers get to deduct health insurance but self-employed individuals don't in the first place?
    Isn't that why we get insurance through our employers anyway? Wouldn't it be more fair if EVERYONE got insurance the old-fashioned way - on the individual market?

  • VG Zaytsev||

    Yes,

    Or make 'health insurance' deductible for everyone.

  • Palin's Buttplug||

    OT for capitalists - Buffett's Berkshire just reported a quarterly profit of $4.5 billion - up 16%, on strong economic activity from its many operating subsidiaries. The King of Capitalism has not lost his touch.

  • Fatty Bolger||

    Nobody ever accused him of not knowing how to make money.

  • Sevo||

    'The King of crony-capitalism has not lost his touch.'

  • Palin's Buttplug||

    Because liberals never make their money honestly like conservatives such as the Koch's do (by inheriting it).

  • Sevo||

    Yeah, that hypocrite Buffett really climbed out of proverty, didn't he?

  • ΘJΘʃ de águila||

    "i ain't no senatah's son, y'all."

  • Sevo||

    I had to look it up; his dad was a rep, and seemingly a sensible one.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Warren_Buffett

  • Sevo||

    Oh, and (same cite):
    "Filing his first income tax return in 1944, Buffett took a $35 deduction for the use of his bicycle and watch on his paper route"
    See, he was always for higher taxes!

  • ΘJΘʃ de águila||

    You've never heard of Diane Feinstein, you partisan poser!

    Repeat after me:

    Buttfuck Bushbama, Buttfuck Bushbama, Buttfuck Bushbama.

    You are right about some liberals. Unfortunately the majority of Silicon Valley billionaires have become supporters of the Military/Technology/Police/Surveillance state.

  • sgs||

    Who said anything about liberals? It says a lot about you that he says "King of crony-capitalism" and you immediately think he's talking about liberals.

  • Palin's Buttplug||

    I have been here six years and they don't have to say it anymore.

    The Peanut Gallery here hates all the top capitalists (Buffett, Gates, Soros, Brin, Page, Ellison, etc) because they are not GOP.

  • Dweebston||

    I'd imagine it has something to do with suggesting that Americans in the aggregate don't pay enough in taxes, and that the wealthiest specifically need to pay still more taxes, and their general failure to distinguish cronyism from tax exemptions.

  • Palin's Buttplug||

    It is a fact that Americans don't pay enough in taxes to fund the government they voted for.

  • Irish||

    It is a fact that Americans don't pay enough in taxes to fund the government they voted for.

    This is a fact. Of course, the obvious course is to spend less money.

  • Palin's Buttplug||

    This is a fact. Of course, the obvious course is to spend less money.

    We fully agree then.

    That is why I hate Bush and the GOP so much. The big spike in spending is all on them ($1.9B to $3.5B) and has leveled off under Obama.

  • Anonymous Coward||

    The big spike in spending is all on them ($1.9B to $3.5B) and has leveled off under Obama.

    Try again, shrieky-boy. When Obama started, spending was approximately $3 trillion. By the time he leaves, it's projected to be 4.2 trillion.

  • Mickey Rat||

    Amazing how what Senator Obama voted for is not President Obama's responsibility.

  • Sevo||

    Palin's Buttplug| 8.2.13 @ 9:10PM |#
    "It is a fact that Americans don't pay enough in taxes to fund the government they voted for."

    Yes, shreek; idiots like you vote for idiots like Obozo and then claim 'it's democracy!'

  • Dweebston||

    In fairness to Shreek, it's not like the only other contender permitted time in the arena put up a strong offense this time around. You and I will continue voting third-party and continue paying first- and second-party taxes.

  • Sevo||

    'The Peanut Gallery here hates all the top rent-seekers (Buffett, , Soros, Brin, Page,, etc) because they are not GOP.'

    I pulled Ellison, which is not strictly fair; he's sticking SF with prolly $10-20m to provide a place for him to race his boat, but it's just amusing watching that media-whore Gavin Newsom have to eat his words.
    Gates (pulled also) is only disliked for his product AFAIK, and you'll notice your fave hypocrite Buffett didn't hand over his dough to be pissed away by the gov't (regardless of his claims of low taxes); he gave it to an outfit that requires results.
    But you left out Welsh.

  • ||

    Please don't confuse "capitalist" with "advocate of capitalism".

  • Irish||

    The Peanut Gallery here hates all the top capitalists (Buffett, Gates, Soros, Brin, Page, Ellison, etc) because they are not GOP.

    Wrong. I dislike Buffett because he advocates raising taxes that he himself never intends to pay. I hate Gates because he writes articles attacking books like Why Nations Fail while arguing in favor of autocratic regimes like China. I also hate him because he argued the president should have even more power, a horrible idea since most of our current problems are the direct result of an overly powerful executive distorting checks and balances. I hate Soros because he funds hyper progressive organizations that are near fascist in their opinions of governmental power and social control.

    I really don't give a shit about the last three on that list.

  • Sevo||

    I stand corrected re: Gates, and given what you post, he's now taken a seat right next to Buffett in the hypocrite competition.

  • Irish||

    Yeah, Gates is terrible. I don't care about any of their business practices, which is why it's hilarious that Buttboy is trying to claim I hate them because they're too super capitalist.

    I hate them because their opinions that aren't related to business are horrible. Gates in particular has frightening authoritarian leanings.

  • AlexInCT||

    Liberals make their money by having government funnel tax payer cash to them then squashing their competition. Buffet is a big Obama fan because the Obama Admin has made it a point to kill things that would hurt Buffet's many companies bottom line (the XL Pipeline for example would have killed Buffet's trains moving oil) or passed laws that helped Buffet's companies make oodles of cash (Obamacare for one). But let's pretend liberals make money honestly simply because government serves to help them steal it through law. Al Gore was not available for comment.

  • AlmightyJB||

    "'The King of crony-capitalism has not lost his touch.'"

    I don't doubt there's a lot of that going on and his whole hypocrisy on taxes is bullshit (I don't pay enough in taxes but I have tax attorneys fighting tooth and nail to get me out of what I do owe), but that dude does know his shit when it comes to investing.

  • AlexInCT||

    It is much easier to know you shit about investing when government does things that favor your investments, and Buffet is batting over .750 with the Obama Admin doing things that favor his investments. XL Pipeline, Obamacare, the Death tax, and many, many, more such regs have steered huge piles of cash to Buffet's companies.

  • ||

    I look forward to seeing how much taxes they try to weasel out of.

  • Anonymous Coward||

    The King of CapitalismVultures has not lost his touch.

    FIFY, shrieky-boy.

    When the estate tax forces an owner to sell his business, it provides an opportunity for a bargain, but that opportunity is not available to everyone ... When the estate tax puts a business on the market, it is a market that is only open to big business.

    Beyond making it easier for Buffett to find bargains, the estate tax drives customers to his primary business interest, insurance, including life insurance. The estate tax has created an entire industry called “estate planning.” Anyone with a business or large assets sooner or later needs to engage in estate planning, which involves hiring tax specialists, attorneys, and accountants ... Two central elements of estate planning are life insurance and annuities.
  • VG Zaytsev||

    Buffett's Berkshire just reported a quarterly profit of $4.5 billion - up 16%, on strong economic activity from its many operating subsidiaries.

    Including the FED?

  • Simon Pieman||

    What would Riley Cooper do?

  • Ted S.||

    Is it me, or is the wailing over Riley Cooper, who only engaged in wrong speech, as bad as that for players who murdered dogs?

  • Acosmist||

    Ray Lewis killed a dude and he's the conscience of the league, so, you know, maybe Riley Cooper should stab someone.

  • William of Purple||

    Cooper hurt someone's feelings

  • Irish||

    OT: According to Slate, Detroit went bankrupt because Republicans hate Smokey Robinson.

    I’m tempted to propose a conspiracy theory: As centers of African-American cultural and political power and engines of a worldwide multiracial pop culture that was egalitarian, hedonistic and anti-authoritarian, these cities posed a psychic threat to the most reactionary and racist strains in American life. I mean the strain represented by Tom Buchanan in “The Great Gatsby” (imagine what he’d have to say about New Orleans jazz) or by the slightly more coded racism of Sean Hannity today. As payback for the worldwide revolution symbolized by hot jazz, Smokey Robinson dancin’ to keep from cryin’ and Eminem trading verses with Rihanna, New Orleans and Detroit had to be punished. Specifically, they had to be isolated, impoverished and almost literally destroyed, so they could be held up as examples of what happens when black people are allowed to govern themselves.

    Indeed.

  • Palin's Buttplug||

    You know, it is amazing that Detroit is viewed as a "black city" yet Obama the angry hate-whitey won't do a damn thing to bail them out. The dipshit racist right-wingers are confounded by this fact.

    Of course facts confound them anyway and Obama is as neutral on race as any POTUS ever.

  • Fatty Bolger||

    Aaaaannnd another check in the "dumb" column.

  • Sevo||

    Dunno, Fatty; still could be 'I'm hoping someone will bleeve this shit'.
    But in this case, I'll go with 'dumb bunny'.

  • ||

    Of course facts confound them anyway and Obama is as neutral on race as any POTUS ever.

    Nothing says race-neutral like comparing yourself to Trayvon Martin. That totally didn't give credibility to the batshit crazy race-mongers.

  • Palin's Buttplug||

    Just go listen to people like Cornel West and Travis Smiley, for two examples.

    They hate Obama because he is not "black" to them.

  • Sevo||

    Palin's Buttplug| 8.2.13 @ 8:39PM |#
    "Just go listen to people like Cornel West and Travis Smiley, for two examples."

    Yeah, we know; it's possible to find ignoramuses worse than you, and you think that means something.

  • sgs||

    "Travis Smiley"

    Do you mean Tavis Smiley?

    Is it really too much to ask that you make at least a cursory attempt to know the basics of the subject you're discussing?

  • Palin's Buttplug||

    OK, Tavis then.

    He is a statist asshole so who cares?

  • PapayaSF||

    They hate Obama because he is not "black" to them.

    This, of course, is the same sort of argument leftists use to "prove" that the mainstream media does not slant left. "But Trotskyites and Maoists say the mainstream media are all capitalist running dogs, so conservatives must be wrong."

  • Palin's Buttplug||

    Just as Fox News and Fat Rush say that capitalists like Buffet are "socialists" because they support paying our bills and not running huge Bush/Cheney deficits.

  • PapayaSF||

    I agree that Buffet is not a "socialist" except perhaps by 1913 standards, but he's hardly a pure exemplar of the free market. There is cronyism and self-serving involved. (E.g., the higher taxes he advocates would make some kinds of insurance he sells more attractive.) It's also rather hypocritical of him to claim he wants to pay more in taxes, and then fight the IRS when they say he owes more.

  • Marshall Gill||

    I see no area where Buffet is unwilling to use government coercive force, so perhaps Fascist is a better term.

    It certainly seems to fit Mr. Christfag.

  • Sevo||

    Palin's Buttplug| 8.2.13 @ 9:42PM |#
    "Just as Fox News and Fat Rush say that capitalists like Buffet are "socialists" because they support paying our bills and not running huge Bush/Cheney deficits"

    You really are an imbecilic asshole.
    Buffet(sic) supports YOU paying for that stuff.
    One of these days, you should visit something like http://www.skeptic.com/about_us/ and learn about thinking rather than your pathetic worship of authority.
    You're at least as bad as the worst fundy.

  • ||

    He's way worse than most fundies.

  • Finrod||

    Obama ran up more in deficits in 4 years than Bush did in 8, idiot.

  • AlexInCT||

    But it was still Boosh's fault!

  • ΘJΘʃ de águila||

    Definitely as neutral as Bush. Well, almost.

  • Irish||

    You know, it is amazing that Detroit is viewed as a "black city" yet Obama the angry hate-whitey won't do a damn thing to bail them out. The dipshit racist right-wingers are confounded by this fact.

    Of course facts confound them anyway and Obama is as neutral on race as any POTUS ever.

    Wow. I'm not even going to refute this. I'll just let it stand as a sort of monument.

  • Palin's Buttplug||

    It is all fact so you can't refute a word.

    Obama is bothered by race issues - it is obvious. He would prefer they didn't exist.

  • Irish||

    Which is why his DOJ went to Florida with the specific goal of stirring up Trayvon Martin protests.

  • Sevo||

    Palin's Buttplug| 8.2.13 @ 9:00PM |#
    "Obama is bothered by race issues - it is obvious. He would prefer they didn't exist."

    Yep, why they aren't worth anything to a cynical slimy liar who can use them for political advantage!
    Fatty, still having trouble but 'dumb bunny' is looking better.

  • wareagle||

    he would prefer no issues at all. Issues cut into his campaigning and golf time.

  • PapayaSF||

    Mr. Buttplug got schooled in this subthread.

  • ||

    That's Salon. I know they're both bulwarks of progressive stupidity, but in my opinion Salon is more retarded. They don't have redeeming features like Dear Prudence.

  • Irish||

    Sorry. I always get Slate and Salon mixed up. They're both five letter words that start with 'S,' they're both mindlessly progressive, and they both have idiots writing for them.

    They don't have redeeming features like Dear Prudence.

    Yes, but is there anyone writing for Salon that's as bad as Amanda Marcotte? David Sirota might be close.

  • Fatty Bolger||

    That's insane.

  • Gozer the Gozerian||

    "...examples of what happens when black people are allowed to govern themselves."

    I want to so bad, but I'm not going there...

  • Sevo||

    I wouldn't.
    No way you're going to touch that and not be called really horrible things regardless of what you do.
    Let sheek make an ass of himself again.

  • Faceless Commenter||

    I predicted this once upon a time, in regards to Obama's presidency.

    After the deluge (I wrote), it will be revealed that Obama was, in reality, put in power by devious white people who knew he was a choom-banging bullshit slinger. Votes were rigged and the press was instructed to suppress evidence. The damage was minimized during his first term to give voters a false sense of security. He was re-elected with the collusion of Mitt Romney, who deliberately flubbed his own campaign. Todd Akin volunteered to make Democrats look like angels and geniuses. The whites in Obama's administration shivved his presidency by giving him lousy advice and running a couple of illegal operations. Predictably, he finally went down in flames as a chorus chanted, "This is what happens when you put Black people in charge."

    I posted it on a blog and offered it free to any Black Studies scholar who wanted it, no acknowledgments necessary. Hunh, maybe Andrew O'Hehir read it.

  • AlmightyJB||

    "Detroit went bankrupt because Republicans hate Smokey Robinson."

    Sounds like the tears of a clown.

  • Sevo||

    AlmightyJB| 8.2.13 @ 11:01PM |#
    "Detroit went bankrupt because Republicans hate Smokey Robinson."

    Sounds like the tears of a clown.

    That's GOOD!

  • Anonymous Coward||

    I mean the strain represented by Tom Buchanan in “The Great Gatsby” (imagine what he’d have to say about New Orleans jazz) or by the slightly more coded racism of Sean Hannity today.

    I wonder if Sean Hannity would willingly take some of his $35 million and hit this fucker with a defamation suit.

  • Palin's Buttplug||

    "Sunday, on his way home from Brazil, Pope Francis said it was not his job to judge gays. He said that's what the Tony Awards are for."
    ---Jay Leno

  • ΘJΘʃ de águila||

    Homophobic Barry, using his best metro-sexual mannerisms, trolls for votes.....

  • Rich||

    Obama’s involvement ... came after serious griping from both sides of the aisle about the potential of a “brain drain.” The fear, as told by sources in both parties, was that aides would head for more lucrative jobs

    Fear of a congressional brain drain -- now, *that's* funny!

    Seriously, fuck 'em. People in the real world "head for more lucrative jobs" all the time.

  • Fatty Bolger||

    Good, maybe they could use those brains to do something productive for a change.

  • Sevo||

    Not sure:
    ..."aides would head for more lucrative jobs"...
    I'm afraid those would simply be lobbying the idiots who replaced them, not actually producing things people would desire absent a gun to their heads.

  • ΘJΘʃ de águila||

    Parasites know only one thing.

  • Gozer the Gozerian||

    It's a slow night, so... this.

  • Faceless Commenter||

    The fix for unions is soon to come. Hint: August 30 is the next Friday-before-a-three-day-weekend.

  • Mike M.||

    Watching America slowly revert back to a monarchy is pretty infuriating.

  • Simon Pieman||

    Queen Oprah!

  • Gozer the Gozerian||

    If only...

    Monarchs have a variety of incentives to steward their nation's long-term economic wellbeing, if only for themselves, their descendants, their posterity, etc.

  • Simon Pieman||

    Mister, we could use a man like Herbert Hoover again.

  • Sevo||

    OT; Public employee unions.
    Don't know why it's happened as the BART directors are elected and therefore likely reliant on union support, but they seem to have grown a pair.
    The unions (mostly SEIU) claim the workers haven't had a raise in forever, which ignores the cost of med and retirement benes at fixed cost to the workers and rising cost to the management (taxpayers). IOWs, the unions are lying. They also ignore the fact that the current compensation package is likely 50% above market-clearing rates and needs drastic cuts.
    The management deserves to be fired; the contract as it exists guarantees the fixed cost to the workers, OT provisions which add ~50% to pay (take a straight-time day off, work an OT day), a no-replacement training clause, and so forth; giving away taxpayer money.
    Anyhow, this time the management hasn't given an inch and the strike is set for Monday, meaning a lot of (subsidized) riders are going to have to find a new way to get to work.
    The comments are clearly not sympathetic to the 'poor' workers:
    http://www.sfgate.com/bayarea/.....702143.php

  • Sevo||

    Oh, and if you check the images, there's ol' Danny Glover in his denim shirt showing 'solidarity' just before changing and getting in his private jet and changing to silk.

  • Faceless Commenter||

    Speaking of those images, what's with the signs? "I am a Man," "I am a Woman." Erb..... how sexist?

  • Sevo||

    I have no idea WIH what those are supposed to express.
    To be honest I didn't even look; is there concern that the "Man" or "Woman" might not be recognized as such?

  • Faceless Commenter||

    To be fair, they could be mistaken for doorknobs.

  • Gozer the Gozerian||

    I fucking hate unions with a passion that transcends all understanding, but I always wonder how much of this nonsense is due to the public nature of the jobs, our "civil service" model of government employment, etc., as opposed to unions per se.

    I've seen some aberrant shit in the private sector due to unions, but it seems like there is some kind of unholy combination in "public employee union," akin to mixing chocolate and peanut butter for the little bastards. It's certainly my explanation for all things related to teachers unions...

    Maybe I am just repeating the argument of guys like FDR.

  • Hyperion||

    I don't have a problem with private unions, as long as the law doesn't prevent the employer from hiring people to replace the union workers if they refuse to work for what the employer can pay.

    Public unions are bullshit, however.

    I can't even remember if I ever told the story here about how I came to really dislike the idea of unions. Maybe it was before my days of posting here when I told it... so I will bore you all now.

    Anyway, back when I was but a young lass, and green and totally ignorant about the ways of the world, I had my first experience with unions.

    Before that I had a prof in economics class who loved unions and minimum wage laws, and whose idol was Alan Greenspan. Hell, I didn't know any better, I was too busy worrying about partying with my friends and chasing wiminz to care, and I still got support from my parents, so wtf did I care?

    cont...

  • Hyperion||

    So then I got my first jerb, which sucked ballz, almost as bad as my 2nd jerb.

    So I heard tell of this company who made carz and who payed wages like was something out of a dream. So I polished up my resume and went there one day with dreams of great fortune.

    I walked in the door of their employment office and got in behind people standing in a line. There was this tall awkward looking guy going around shouting something at people in line in front of me, but I couldn't tell what he was saying from where I was at. I mean, this was a really, really long line, like a half mile it seemed like.

    So, after a little while, this male version of Ann Coulter finally made it to where I was standing in a line, and he looked at me sort of like a cow looks at you.

    cont...

  • Hyperion||

    So the Ann Coulter giraffe/cow/human hybrid guy asked me: You in line for facry work?

    The conversation then went like this:

    Me: I just wanted to see where I could submit my resume (holding it in my hand), I'm looking for IT work.

    Union guy: What? (takes resume from my hand and stares at it like it's some sort of alien artifact). You in line for facry work?

    Me: No, where can I submit my resume to your IT department.

    Union guy: If you're in line for facry work, you need to go over there to line number 3.

    Me: No no, I'm not here for factory work, I am looking for IT work, here's my resume.

    Cont:

  • Hyperion||

    Union guy: (Stares at me) You drive one of them furen cars?

    Me: What?

    Union guy: Cause if you drive one of them furens cars, I cain't be responsible for what happens to it if you park it in our lot!

    Me: Um, I think I am in the wrong place, bye.

    That was the last time I ever tried to find work with a unionized employer.

  • Dweebston||

    You've got the demented down, but in order to achieve SugarFree status you'll need to amp up the ambitiously discomforting sexual innuendo by several orders of magnitude.

  • Hyperion||

    you'll need to amp up the ambitiously discomforting sexual innuendo by several orders of magnitude

    That would make me Warty. There can only be one unholy of holies.

  • Irish||

    Before that I had a prof in economics class who loved unions and minimum wage laws, and whose idol was Alan Greenspan.

    This is impossible. I have it on good authority that Alan Greenspan is totally in favor of all things free market. That's why it's Ayn Rand's fault that the economy collapsed.

    Debating like a leftist is easy. All you have to do is slam non-sequiturs together.

  • Hyperion||

    The guy loved Greenspan because he claimed that Greenspan was really the most powerful guy in the world.

    He sort of worshiped the guy like Shreek worships Obama.

  • Sevo||

    My points:
    1) There should be no legal limit on who associates with whom and whether those two (or thousands) chose to call that association a "union".
    2) The government has no business inserting itself as a third party in labor/management negotiations; that means it should not require any business to negotiate with any organization, regardless of what that organization calls itself,
    3) The government must provide protection to anyone hired by any company regardless of whether these people were hired during a union strike as it does to anyone.
    4) Similarly, any public agency is not required to negotiate with a "union"; its management should negotiate with the individuals who work there.
    Moonbeam failed on the last point and CA continues to pay for his stupidity.

  • Gozer the Gozerian||

    I would only add that unions should have no legal privileges or protections not provided to other legal persons (i.e., corporations).

  • Sevo||

    Agreed.
    And as of now, that is not the case.

  • PapayaSF||

    SFGate comments often run to the right of the typical SF voter, but it's heartening to see the comments and voting going so overwhelmingly against the unions.

  • Sevo||

    PapayaSF| 8.2.13 @ 9:46PM |#
    "SFGate comments often run to the right of the typical SF voter, but it's heartening to see the comments and voting going so overwhelmingly against the unions."

    Agreed.

  • Palin's Buttplug||

    http://littlegreenfootballs.co.....ents/#ctop

    The Beckerhead - Obama is preparing for a "race war".

  • Dweebston||

    If it's anything like the Clone War, I'll pass. I'm incredulous viewers still have the patience for sterile green-screen action flicks.

  • Gozer the Gozerian||

    When I read comments like that, I just want to go watch the Harry S. Plinkett reviews (again).

  • Dweebston||

    Right? I was disappointed he didn't deconstruct ST:ID, but after reflecting I realized the movie just wasn't worth his time. It wasn't awful enough, and it certainly wasn't good enough, just a tepid, ambivalent mess of cliches.

  • Gozer the Gozerian||

    Indeed, it was another example of why I oppose recycling.

  • Hyperion||

    If Obama would have married a white woman, like his mom, would his son have looked anything like Glen Beck?

  • The Late P Brooks||

    it seems like there is some kind of unholy combination in "public employee union,"

    To begin with, you have two sets of "pubic employees" who are in no sense of the word in an adversarial relationship colluding together in contract negotiations(!) to divvy up money belonging to the taxpayers suckers. Add to this a complete lack of any sort of legitimate measurable return-on-investment feedback, and you get Bell, California. Or Detroit.

  • Gozer the Gozerian||

    Exactly. My inquisitive nature forces me to ponder how much of this is due to the nature of the public position itself (which is not exogenous, I know!), how much is due to the union, and how much is due to their symbiosis. What if we still had the spoils system, instead of a civil service mentality? What if public institutions faced more competition, as unionized private sector actors do? What if Americans weren't political naifs?

  • Sevo||

    The Late P Brooks| 8.2.13 @ 9:37PM |#
    "...Add to this a complete lack of any sort of legitimate measurable return-on-investment feedback, and you get Bell, California. Or Detroit."

    This is the issue.
    Once a union gets involved negotiating with others who have no measurable value, it's all about what's "fair".
    "Fair" is bullshit. What needs to happen is the firing (or 're-applying for jobs') of the BART employees at market-clearing rates.
    Knock compensation down 50%; still got folks standing in line? Knock it down another 25%. Rinse and repeat.
    When the line thins out, add 10% and hope the interviews are 'professional.

  • Gozer the Gozerian||

    The trick is always in establishing the quality of applicant you want in line...

    That is where I really don't have an answer, and even occasionally concede the point of some "liberals."

  • Sevo||

    Gozer the Gozerian| 8.2.13 @ 10:13PM |#
    "The trick is always in establishing the quality of applicant you want in line...
    That is where I really don't have an answer, and even occasionally concede the point of some "liberals.""

    Not sure what's conceded. Hiring is tough; the union helps nothing at all in that regard; I don't see a "liberal' point that makes that wrong.

  • Gozer the Gozerian||

    "Liberals" often desire higher pay for positions, supposedly in order to attract quality applicants.

    I am actually agnostic on those issues much of the time, because I think that the correct price is discovered through market forces. The best example, for me, is that of teachers. I think that a good teacher is worth a hell of a lot more than what the average teacher makes. However... (You know where that goes.)

  • Sevo||

    Gozer the Gozerian| 8.2.13 @ 10:33PM |#
    ""Liberals" often desire higher pay for positions, supposedly in order to attract quality applicants."

    It is possible to attract better talent with higher wages, but that presumes the interviewer makes that choice during the hiring process to attract that talent. I see nothing in the record of pub-sec hires that suggests that's true.
    It might be possible to reward more talent with higher wages/benes, but the pub-sec unions hate that option.

  • Gozer the Gozerian||

    That is why I like the example of teachers unions: They bristle at the idea of higher pay for performance!

  • creech||

    A teacher's union rep once admitted to me that even at the school district's current "crap wages," the school board was getting hundreds of applications from all around the country - many of whom were "outstanding" teachers in their districts - for every opening advertised when a teacher retired or quit.

  • Sevo||

    creech| 8.2.13 @ 10:38PM |#
    "A teacher's union rep once admitted to me that even at the school district's current "crap wages," the school board was getting hundreds of applications..."

    The compensation is too high.

  • Marshall Gill||

    How dare you suggest that my sister is being paid too much! $45 an hour, plus very generous benefits, for teaching kindergarten is so terrible that she has been doing it for 20 years, for the children, of course.

  • William of Purple||

    and summers off.

  • The Late P Brooks||

    back when I was but a young lass

    Wait, what?

  • Simon Pieman||

    Yeah, what??

  • Hyperion||

    lad. I guess I was having a gender crisis moment.

    Anyway, how do you know I didn't start out as a lass?

  • ||

    You know, I feel infinitely better about your past confusion about my gender. Thank you.

  • Generic Stranger||

    Stop othering Hyperion!

  • Simon Pieman||

    #11.

  • Hyperion||

    Where the fuck are the late nite links? Why don't we have those yet? Who was responsible for getting those anyway???

  • Sevo||

    "Who was responsible for getting those anyway???"

    WE are.

  • Generic Stranger||

    I don't know; if Late Nite Links is going to be dominated by 9/11 troofers, I'm not sure we should bother.

  • Sevo||

    Generic Stranger| 8.2.13 @ 10:09PM |#
    "I don't know; if Late Nite Links is going to be dominated by 9/11 troofers, I'm not sure we should bother."

    Haven't seen that.
    Seen anti-GMO-luddites. Seen pro-choo-choo(union)luddites. No troofers.

  • Hyperion||

    Now wait...

    Someone here, last night, proposed late nite links. But I can't remember who.

    I think it was also proposed the Lucy will be the host...

  • Gozer the Gozerian||

    If you start something over here, I will follow.

    I'm a natural follower...

  • Hyperion||

    I didn't see the troofers here late at night. The real scourge here late at night, is the Canuckistanians... but never mind, if it weren't for them, no one would be here.

  • William of Purple||

    they're showing canuck football on NBC Sportsnetwork

  • Gozer the Gozerian||

    BE the change you want in the world, Hyperion.

    YES YOU CAN!

  • The Late P Brooks||

    What if public institutions faced more competition, as unionized private sector actors do?

    Without the government, trash would be piled to the sky. Houses would burn to the ground as the feckless rabble stood helplessly by, mouths agape. Nobody would have water to drink. NO ROADZ!

  • wakeup||

    9/11 False Flag Conspiracy - Finally Solved

  • RBS||

  • Gozer the Gozerian||

    Sikhism?

  • wakeup||

    Why GMOs Can Never be Safe

  • Sevo||

    Whoa, wakeup! That is some some really amusing graphology!
    Sarc? I hope...

  • wakeup||

    read it slower next time.

  • Sevo||

    "read it slower next time."

    Read WHAT slower? I'm supposed to search for your point?
    How about a hint.

  • Hyperion||

    Exactly how much stuff is it that we eat, that's not been genetically modified?

    Anyone been out in the untamed wilderness picking some salad greens lately?

    What about evolution? Isn't that a form of genetic modification? Is it only evil when guys in white lab coats do it, instead of it happening by accident?

  • creech||

    Here's how one anti-gmo explained it to me: it's o.k. if you play around with a few different corn plants to make a hybrid with larger ears, but it isn't
    alright to insert,say, a gene from a different living thing, say a cockroach, to make the resulting hybrid's ears larger. He's happy to eat the one but the other is unnatural, yucky, and sure to give one cancer or two heads or cockroach legs or something.

  • Hyperion||

    Where's his scientific proof that it's not ok to cross genes that normally could not be achieved in nature, assuming that sometime over millenia, that it would never just happen my accident?

    Does he mean that it's not ok, because according to his emotions, it's not ok?

    Sciene, how does it work? I thought only Rethuglicans were anti-science?

  • Sevo||

    Hyperion| 8.2.13 @ 10:24PM |#
    "Exactly how much stuff is it that we eat, that's not been genetically modified?"

    Easy: 99.99999%.
    Unless you pick dandelion greens for your salad, or eat roaches, it's been genetically modified.

  • wakeup||

    So is Everyone out watching Smurfs2, huh?

  • Hyperion||

    Will they save the whales and solve global warming?

  • Gozer the Gozerian||

    I have it on good authority, from the future, that the humpbacks will be fine.

  • ||

    No way. Everyone knows the smurfs are communist.

  • William of Purple||

    You're motoring
    What's your price for flight
    In finding mister right
    You'll be alright tonight

  • William of Purple||

    Shark found at door of Mass. pub

  • William of Purple||

    Famous Musicians Before They Were Famous

  • MappRapp||

    Sometimes man you jsut have to roll with it.

    www.Anon-Top.tk

  • William of Purple||

    Meet 'Azzam', the world's largest, fastest superyacht

  • Dweebston||

    All but 5% of Americans are or want to be married, says 24/7. I imagine all but some oddball single-digit percent of Americans want to win the lottery, or want Oprah to buy them a car, or want the intestinal fortitude to never again endure food poisoning, so I can't say this is surprising for a culture steeped in marital ambitions. But it does raise an interesting question: why, if we're all similarly optimistic about the prospect of wedding bells in our future, do so few of us get married? Is it because the economic costs have risen dramatically even as the social costs have dropped to nil? Is it because women no longer act like women?

  • Sevo||

    "Is it because women no longer act like women?"

    Uh, you mean women no longer act like servants?
    Sorry, Mrs Sevo is not about to 'act like a woman' according to that, and if she did, I'd be looking for a divorce.

  • Anonymous Coward||

    I'm in the 5%. Never have been married and never will be. So long as no fault divorces exist, I refuse to put my neck in that particular noose and trust someone not to get pissed and pull the trapdoor.

  • Sevo||

    "I refuse to put my neck in that particular noose"

    I see no "noose".
    Ever been in business with a partner?
    Care to explain any difference?

  • Dweebston||

    Business partnerships are treated equitably by the courts. Marital partnership, not quite.

  • Anonymous Coward||

    Your business partner rarely gets alimony.

  • ||

    Uh, you mean women no longer act like servants?

    The women I know act like servants. What else do you call it when random females offer to buy things for you or do favors for you?

  • William of Purple||

    Read this JOHNNY LONG OF TORSO

    The text of Romans 13 can be better understood with an appreciation for the historical context and evident reason through Scripture and experience, rather than taking a “face value” interpretation as so many Christians often do. - See more at: http://libertarianchristians.c.....x5gxj.dpuf
  • General Butt Naked||

    The bible: Letting us down one last time.

  • maureen||

    Aaliyah. true that Julia`s st0rry is really great, on saturday I bought a brand new Jaguar XJ when I got my cheque for $6359 this-past/five weeks and-just over, ten k this past munth. this is really the nicest-work Ive had. I actually started eight months/ago and pretty much straight away was bringin in over $76... per-hr. I work through this link, http://www.Day34.com

  • Fatty Bolger||

    I've seen some aberrant shit in the private sector due to unions, but it seems like there is some kind of unholy combination in "public employee union," akin to mixing chocolate and peanut butter for the little bastards

    It's a double whammy. Not only do you get the problems normally associated with unionized labor, but then you introduce the third-party payer problem.

  • PapayaSF||

    Especially in cities, you get a feedback problem: unions elect friendly politicians, who give unions what they want, who reelect friendly politicians... until the city goes broke.

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