Obamacare

The Health Care Superbowl Begins

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Tailgaters at the health care Superbowl.

As we settle into what is almost certainly the final weekend for health care reform—call it the Health Care Superbowl—and it's still not clear whether or not it will actually pass. For most of the day Friday, it appeared that Democrats were on a clear path to pick up enough votes to pass health care reform—picking up a series of holdouts who were presumed to be tough gets. But Friday night, after rumors began to circulate that Nancy Pelosi had cut a deal with Rep. Bart Stupak's pro-life faction, pro-choice Democrats began to object. And, after a series of meetings with Pelosi, they suggested that any deal with Stupak could cause them to withdraw their support for the reform bill.

Which leaves Pelosi in something of a tough spot. According to The Hill, she's now indicating that "there [won't] be any votes on side issues on healthcare legislation, including abortion." And Stupak indefinitely postponed a planned 11 a.m. press conference in which he was expected to announce that he had agreed to some sort of deal. Reports indicate that Democratic leadership may be trying to bring Stupak's faction on board with an executive order prohibiting federal funding from being used on abortion, but the National Right to Life Committee, the crucial interest group on the issue, has reportedly rejected this as insufficient.

Where does that leave the vote count? Nate Silver says it looks like she's still down by a handful. He thinks that the final votes are gettable, but isn't convinced that passage is a certainty:

That she has 216 potential yes votes, however, doesn't mean she'll actually get them. This is a very complicated bargaining process. The greatest risk, perhaps, is that the negotiations start to break down on multiple levels—i.e. she's having headaches with some members over Stupak, with others over deem-and-pass, with still others (like Pete DeFazio) over Medicaid equity, etc. If that happens, there could be a sort of "run on the bank" as wavering Democrats seek to distance themselves from the legislation.

Meanwhile, it looks like the "deem-and-pass" procedural strategy (also known as the Slaughter Solution) by which House Democrats had hoped to avoid a direct vote on the Senate health care bill is now off the table.

All of which is to say that the situation is still very fluid and no one really knows for sure how it's going to play out. For those who really want to stay on top of things, the best bet is probably Twitter. I'll be updating irregularly throughout the day, but I also recommend the American Spectator's Philip Klein, Cato's Michael Cannon, The Hill's Jeffrey Young, and The Daily Caller's Jon Ward.  

Other assorted notes:

  • There are somewhere between 2,000 and 25,000 protesters rallying against passage of the bill on the Hill.
  • The CBO has yet to release a score for manager's amendment. So much for Pelosi's promise that we'd have 72 hours to look over the CBO's reports!

(Second photo via Mollie Hemingway.)

Update: NRO is now reporting that, after having his proposed deal rejected, Stupak is "finished with Pelosi." Remains to be seen whether the rest of his faction feels the same.

Update 2: The Hill reports that Stupak's pro-life faction has been reduced from a dozen to a half dozen.

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  1. Better call Homeland Security and the SPLC… someone’s got a Gadsden flag.

    1. Super Bowl is two words.

  2. And so it begins….

    1. My alma mater thumped Kansas thereby destroying Obama’s NCAA bracket. It must be a sign.

  3. Let this be their last battlefield.

    1. I doubt it. Pelosi is going to parachute into your backyard to get this turd passed, remember?

      1. sage, Pelosi is white on the right side. I am white on the left side.

        1. Can we get a translator in here ASAP?

          1. We are all going to Obamacare. You cannot change the course of this bill any more than you can change me.

          2. I took a lot of codeine today, dude. A LOT.

            1. Sounds like you had the fish.

            2. Heavy drug use is pretty much implied by your 4:33 post, Epi.

              Or a conversion to Zen Buddhism and its koans.

            3. As your attorney, I advise you to take a hit out of the little brown bottle in my shaving kit. You won’t need much, just a tiny taste.

            4. Reduced to codeine eh Epi. I thought you were were into sterner stuff!

              1. I am, but shit is impossible to get right now.

          3. Trek reference. sage Nerd Fail.

            1. THANK YOU.

              You people disgust me, not getting both a Star Trek original series AND a Frank Gorshin reference.

              1. You people disgust me, not getting both a Star Trek original series AND a Frank Gorshin reference.

                YOU fail. My line was also from that episode and none of you terkkies trekkies caught it.

            2. TOTAL FAIL

              Everyone should’ve had it at 3:06.
              Epi couldn’t have dropped a bigger hint at 4:33. We have a cultural literacy crisis.Worst Star Trek* episode ever though.

              (* I don’t qualify “TOS” because I do not recognize any other TV series as “Star Trek”)

              1. Dude, the worst episode of the original ST was the one where the greek gods made the cast RIDE EACH OTHER LIKE HORSES.

                Need I mention a midget was involved?

                1. First interracial kiss on network television, bitches! Shatner and Nichols. Kirk likes ’em white, black, green, it doesn’t matter.

              2. Sorry, SIV, but “Spock’s Brain” has to be the worst episode.

                1. “Spock’s Brain” is by far the worst.

                  1. Yes. And “The way to eden” is the best-worst.

                    1. So I guess everyone loves “Cat’s Paw”.

                    2. What? No hate for “And the Children Shall Lead”?

                      Starring Melvin Beli for chrise sake!

        2. I would have thought it would be the other way round…

  4. Meanwhile, it looks like “deem-and-pass” (also known as the Slaughter Solution) by which House Democrats had hoped to avoid a direct vote on the Senate health care bill is now off the table.

    It never should have been on the table in the first place. Passing legislation, and of this scope and intrusive in particular, should be (and is) subject to “yea” or “nay” vote.

    In the marketplace of ideas, let ideas stand on their own merits.

  5. “intrusive language”

  6. This thing will pass.

    R.I.P. to quality, non-rationed, & reasonable priced (compared to what it is going to be after passage) health care.

    Man I am depressed! Why can’t they throw in this shit stew of Reconciliation Marijuana legalization? Please throw us a bone!

  7. Kevin, it ain’t over till Pelosi sings a falsetto.

    Preferably a dirge.

    1. Even if it passes, it’ll been the courts for years. It ain’t over.

      1. but the court challanges even assuming they court overturns stuff is only on a few aspects of the bill… the bulk of this will remain in tact

  8. Looks like I picked the wrong day to quit huffing glue.

    1. bmp, do you like gladiator movies?

      1. Epi, have you ever seen a grown man naked?

        1. Johnny, I think you’re the greatest, but my dad says you don’t work hard enough on defense. And he says that lots of times, you don’t even run down court. And that you don’t really try…except during the playoffs.

          1. LISTEN KID!I’ve been hearing that crapever since I was at UCLA. I’m out there busting my buns everynight. Tell yourold man to drag Walton and Lenier up and down the court for 48 minutes

            1. I like my coffee like I like my men, John. Black.

              1. Fortunately, I speak Jive.

                1. But did you have the fish?

                  1. I am serious. And stop calling me “shirley”.

              2. I seem to get my women the same way I get my coffee, cold and bitter.

                1. John, add some fucking sugar and put it in the microwave.;-)

                  1. Sometimes it isn’t that simple.

                    1. They peed on my fucking rug, Walter.

                    2. John needs to make her want him. Then his coffee will be cold for the right reason.

                    3. Sorry, your marriage didn’t work out.

    1. Damn, he was surrounded by socialists (including the chairbitch) and they still got their ass handed to them.

      1. ‘chairbitch’, might enjoy making your her stool boy.

        1. Oh, I’ll gladly drop a stool on her. I have three words for you: eggs for breakfast.

          1. Your forgot the most important word: raw eggs for breakfast. Remember to cook some spinach in there too.

    2. Good lord, the chairwomen is dangerously stupid.

      1. listen bitches, dangerously stupid can’t apply to both success and failure.

        1. Okay, willfully ignorant, obfuscating, and as close to my definition of “evil” as a human being can get.

      2. Leona Helmsli without the charm….

      3. She’s a perfect representative for Rochester, and I say that as a native.

  9. All bills for raising Revenue shall originate in the House of Representatives.
    Does this bill “raise revenue”?

    1. There’s a stupid loophole around this, but, yes, Congress has thought of this problem.

      Technically, the Senate bill is actually a House bill. It’s an unrelated House taxation bill (probably technical) that the House passed much earlier in the session. Senate Majority Leader Reid held the bill in reserve to use as a shell for things like this.

      The bill was then completely replaced with an amendment in substitute of its entire text; the amendment being the Senate health care bill. This was then passed. Thus, technically the Senate health care bill is a House tax bill that’s been radically amended, and the House can agree to the Senate changes.

      It’s pretty absurd, but the Senate has used this workaround before, and the parliamentarian is okay with it.

      1. The short version: it’s called “gut and replace”. Happens all the time — the majority party introduces some innocuous bills that do very little, but have a very broad title, and then shovel in whatever language they want when the occasion arises.

        1. What makes this legal?

          1. Lawyers, duh.

      2. Assuming the reconciliation bill passes in the House tomorrow, is there another vote necessary in the Senate?

        1. Found out the answer to this one and don’t like it. The base Senate bill goes to Obama, but the House revisions to that bill have to go back to the Senate for another vote. Plus, Obama has to sign the first one before the Senate sends him the second one.

          So, we could end up with only the Senate bill passed into law, with none of the House changes.

  10. ola, the Senate took a bill originating in the House and replaced every word of it w/ ObamaCare, thus sleezing their way around the Constitution.

  11. If only this were just a mere football game, and not our country and our lives that are on the line.

  12. For want of a Stupak!

    Doesn’t that name make you want to yell like an angry boss? “Stu-paaak! Get in here!”

    This thing really does prove that Pelosi has the biggest balls in D.C.

    She’s got more than 200 people telling her: “My stomach is shitting through my heart when I think about voting for this thing because it’s incredibly unpopular with everybody. So actually, you know, I think my stomach may be right this time.”

    And she’s telling them: “No, your stomach’s wrong. If we don’t pass this you’re going to be washed up. Voting yea is the only way to go.”

    And the reality is that she’s almost the only member of congress who stands to lose if this bill fails. And no member of congress, including Pelosi, stands to gain if it passes.

    And yet she keeps winning that argument with more than 200 people. Most of whom have had some schooling.

    That’s a player. I don’t know who Mr. Pelosi is, but he must be pretty handy with a feather duster.

    1. My stomach is shitting through my heart when I think about voting for this thing

      Tim, I have to give you big props for this. I LOLed, hard.

    2. Think, if only we had a Nancy Pelosi on our side.

    3. Tim,

      It takes a lot of balls to drive a truck off a cliff. But that doesn’t make any smarter. If they pass this thing, they will be lucky to have 100 votes in the House next January.

      1. What’s good in a mid-term election?

        To crush Democratic incumbants, drive them from the Rotunda and hear the wailing of every buttlicking douchebag on MSNBC.

        Yes, I expect to be pissed off at the Republican majority by 2012. It’s very unlikely that I will be anywhere near this pissed off, though.

        Between now and November I hope for court battles and a level of legislative gridlock unequaled in the annals of American history.

        And also, fuck. them.

        1. The Republicans and terrified Democrats in the Senate will pass a repeal of this thing only to see Obama veto it. Imagine where Obama’s approval ratings will be then. If he gets this, I don’t think Obama will even run for reelection. He has stated repeatedly he doesn’t care if he is a one term President. I think he just wants to fuck up healthcare and deprive the voters of the chance to kick his sorry ass out of office.

          1. That’ what interests me. How long will it take for the Dems to start trying to run away from this the way they ran from their Iraq votes? And will they be allowed to do it?

            And will Hatch live up to his trash talking and make life in the Senate hell for the Dems? Because from what I’ve read – and I’m a smart chick, but I’m thoroughly confused at this point — it might not be over once the House signs it.

            Do you think the Senate will really refuse to do any tinkering and just pass it on to the President? Would they stab House Dems in the back in full view of everyone like that?

            I kind of want to see that. I’m kind of in a “let the motherfucker burn” mood.

            1. I think the Senate will absolutely stick it to the House. First, they like their kickbacks and abortion funding. Second, once Obama signs this everyone on the Demcoratic side will want it to go away. They will want to declare victory and move on and hope the country forgets about it. They are not going to spend one dime of political capital fixing it.

              And the Democrats are totally going to run from this vote. They are going to try to pretend they didn’t vote for it. And then when they get killed try to claim that people voted against them for any reason other than hating this bill. And I think the Republicans are going to make the Dems life hell over this. That is not because the Republicans are principled or are doing so for any of the right reasons. They will do it because it will be politically profitable for them. The Democrats are going to be piriahs after this.

              1. And the Democrats are totally going to run from this vote. They are going to try to pretend they didn’t vote for it. And then when they get killed try to claim that people voted against them for any reason other than hating this bill.

                The GOP set the example for them when they lost in 2006. “They kicked us out of office because of … uh … the Bridge To Nowhere. No, Mark Foley. No, Tom Delay! That’s it! Certainly nothing to do with all those wars and stuff.”

            2. They can’t run from this one. They can point at Republicans for the Iraq War, but this one is going to have “Democratic Party” written all over it.

          2. The best thing that will ultimately come out of this dickhead’s presidency is that I think the people are going to vet their presidential candidates a LOT more seriously and thoroughly from now on. And it will be a pretty long time before the country puts a lefty college professor in the White House again after this obomination.

            1. I don’t think there will be another black President in my lifetime. After this no one will ever believe that another black candidate is anything but a radical lefty. And we have already voted for one, so there would be nothing historic about voting for another one.

              I also think it will be at least 12 years before another Democrat gets in office. After Obama, no one will believe that any Democrat, no matter how well presented and how much he claims to be a centrist, is anything but a radical leftist.

              1. Too bad Walter E. Williams is too old to run… not that HE thinks he is, but he is.

                1. With Tom Sowell as his Veep. Shit, I’d crawl over broken glass to vote for that ticket.

                  1. Exactly, those are “good blacks.”

                    1. MNG, quit being a douche.

                    2. No, they happen to be black men who are conservative and they happen to be best friends and colleagues of each other.

                    3. Good? Shit, they’re great blacks. They’re great men.

                  2. Goddamn it, stop making me mourn for what will never be.

                    I’m still going to get a bunch of “Sowell/Williams 2012” stickers printed out though. I’ll mail a few hundred each to them as well.

                    Sowell would be a better president than Williams, but I’ll cheerfully accept either with no questions or bitching.

              2. It is really a historical tragedy that the first black president is a leftist asshole. If the first Latin Octoroon president is anything like Obama, I’m going to start reporting back ‘White’ on my Census form for now on.

              3. Nah, there are probably a hundred thousand plus black conservatives in this country. Run someone similar to Walter Williams, Clarence Thomas, or Thomas Sowell, and no one in touch with reality will believe they are a radical lefty.

                1. But they WILL be called Uncle Toms.

              4. I don’t think there will be another black President in my lifetime

                How old are you, John? But I digress. The same country who elected Obama despite his half-blackness will now swear off all subsequent black or partially black candidates, because Obama has proved to be such a lying amateur? Why do you hate America, John?

              5. By that logic we can’t ever have a white president again either, since Bush screwed things up so badly.

                I don’t think you realize how disgusting your argument is here, John. You’re saying it is right and just that people judge all potential black presidents by the fact that they have the same color skin as a fuckup, but you don’t apply that to white candidates.

                1. John didn’t say it was right, he said it would happen due to the fucked up nature of this country to judge one person of a minority or group (black, Mexican, woman, etc.) as the representative of the whole. So even if John Q. American saw bad-ass Thomas Sowell spouting some genuine free-market awesomeness, that asshole Obama will still be on his mind cause they both have some more melanin than most people.

                2. He’s just being realistic. If Bush had been the first white president and did all the shit he did, the same logic would apply. The impression left would be “Don’t vote for white guys, they’re warmongers!”

                3. Dude,

                  John was being descriptive not prescriptive.

                  If someone says the Nazi’s are going to kill Jews if they ever take over the government it does not mean that he is rubbing his hands at the prospect of sending people up the chimney. It’s probable, in fact, they publicize that prediction because they are unhappy with the prospect.

            2. the last time we had a lefty college professor in the white house we got the income tax, the federal reserve and WWI. When you think about it that way, this lefty colleg professor doesnt look too bad.

              1. He’s only had a year so far, though.

          3. If republicans take house just don’t pass any bill that funds any part of the enforcement of this fartlick of a bill. Don’t fund more IRS agents to track non payment of fines, no funds for any agency that has anything to do with this. While they’re at it don’t fund dept of education, housing, energy, state, commerce, hhs, labor, transportation, …. you get the point.

        2. A chick quoting Conan the Barbarian? Awesome.

      2. “It takes a lot of balls to drive a truck off a cliff.”

        No it doesn’t. Worked fine for us.

      3. No way – they’ll have 200.

    4. Stuuuupak!!! You screwed up the Foofram contract! Yoooou’re fired!!!

      1. Somehow Mr. Spacely’s voice comes to mind first.

        1. Stupid joke handles.

    5. “Pelosi has the biggest balls in D.C.” The doctor had to do something with that extra skin they cut off.

    6. “That’s a player. I don’t know who Mr. Pelosi is, but he must be pretty handy with a feather duster.” Tim, are you sure you’re not projecting?

  13. I don’t know who Mr. Pelosi is, but he must be pretty handy with a feather duster.

    Mr Pelosi is locked in the basement in nothing but assless leather chaps w/ a ball gag in his mouth.

    1. +awesomeness to both you and cavanaugh

    2. If the vote goes bad, that guy’s ass is really going to be doing some bleeding Sunday night.

    3. Yeah, but you could say the same for about 2/3 of the mean in Pelosi’s district.

      1. Oops….”men”

        1. There’s lotsa mean in Pelosi’s district.

          1. But I thought SFO was all about the love, maaaaaaan. 😛

  14. And the reality is that she’s almost the only member of congress who stands to lose if this bill fails.

    I don’t see how Tim. The People’s Republic of San Fransisco won’t vote her out of office. They will say,”You fought the good fight,” or some such drivel.

    However, her reputation as a whipper up of votes in the catch will take a beating.

    I don’t know who Mr. Pelosi is, but he must be pretty handy with a feather duster.

    I’m sure he is a quite the connoisseur of flavored ball-gags as well.

    1. whip upper? whipper upper?

      1. The second one. Whipper upper.

        Thanks for catching that.

        1. the first one;-)

    2. Yeah, I mean if this fails she would be very likely to lose the speakership. (Though, of course, she’ll lose it anyway if the Democrats lose the majority. I don’t know what the numbers are looking like for that, and it’s only March.)

      1. Abe: “Remind me why I do this again?”

        Hellboy: “Rotten eggs and the safety of mankind.

  15. My gut feeling is that the game is all but over, that the Senate bill will pass the House tomorrow. When the House reconciliation bill is ignored by the the Senate Pelosi will be so discredited to the members of her own party nothing will get done in the House until a new speaker is selected in January. There’s 50% chance the new speaker will be a Democrat, < 5% chance on it being Pelosi.

    But you never really know what could happen.

    1. If they pass this, it will be the apocolypse in the House. I don’t see any Democrat who votes for it staying in office unless they are from the bluest of blue districts. And there are only about 120 or so of those. A Republican won in Massachusetts by doing nothing but promising to kill this bill. That is how unpopular it is. And when the reconciliation bill dies in the Senate and all of them wind up voting for abortion funding and all the kickbacks it will just get worse.

      Everyone talks blythly about how great it is going to be for the Democrats to get this thing and then play defense. Who cares if we lose the House. That is no big deal. Well, it will be a big deal. A lot of people will feel betrayed and angry and be out of work and out of influence come November. And they will blame Pelosi, Reid and the Obamasiah. There will be a civil war in the Democratic Party over this. Pelosi doesn’t think that is going to happen because she has no idea how unpopular this is. She thinks that they will just lose 30 or 40 seats they were going to lose anyway. It will be much worse. And there will be hell to pay once the Democrats realize the kind of damage she has done to their brand.

      1. Dude.

        I love the optimism, don’t get me wrong. But Mitt Fucking Romney is leading the presidential polls right now. Among Republican voters. The first governor to pass Obama-esque care in his state is the leading Republican presidential contender.

        I hope this thing is as unpopular as you think. I pray it is. I pray for the slaughter you envision.

        I’m just not convinced it’s going to materialize. This isn’t America anymore.

        1. Presidential polls are next to worthless at this point. Until the fall of ’07 everyone thought a Rudy-Hillary presidential race was inevitable.

          1. My point isn’t about Mitt Romney becoming president, per se. My point is simply that here in 2010, the same voters whom John thinks will make life apocalyptic for the Democrats are sitting here digging on someone like Mitt Romney.

            In other words, I’m not convinced there’s some apocalypse coming. If so, we’d already see it in the form of a big “fuck you” to the likes of Romney and anyone else remotely associated with government-run health care.

      2. Funny, I see a different future. I see the electorate noticing over the coming months that elderly people are not being condemned by death panels and incinerated in green energy furnaces; that sick people who had been left for dead by our law-of-the-jungle medical system are suddenly getting the care they need; that the medical mercenary “doctors” who threatened to quit if they got paid what their services were worth, rather than whatever they felt like charging, were bluffing all along; and that giving the government a greater ability to control medical costs is not socialism.

        And when they see all these things, it’s not going to be the Democrats they distrust — it’s going to be all the obstructionists who lied and cheated in vain. Not that I like the Democratic Party that much — they have their own problems with craven power brokers forcing us true progressives to support them. But in the future, the big political difference will be Democrat vs. Green rather than vs. Republican, as the GOP will have gone the way of the Whigs.

        1. You could be correct: We very well might see that the public likes what it’s about to get.

          But if that’s the case, we won’t live in America anymore. This won’t be the country it was supposed to be.

          Americans used to understand that freedom was a principle that mattered above all, unto itself. They respected that ideal, even if they couldn’t philosophize about it or rhapsodize about it like we do here.

          Somewhere along the way, they got conned into thinking that “democracy” was America’s most important ideal — conned, of course, by people for whom democracy provided power. That power has now been used to further con them into totally ceding liberty, the very thing that set America apart from everywhere else.

          My principal worry isn’t “health care costs” or “wait times” or even rationing. My worry is simply that we’ve just put the final sword through the heart of the American experiment, which was something humanity had spent a really long time, and a whole lot of brainpower, and many, many lives, to arrive at.

          My life wasn’t yours to tinker with, Forrest. I had a special inheritance, being born an American. It wasn’t yours to take away.

          1. The swords already gone through it. The parts of the bill that have caused the most outrage are the government-funded-abortions and the potential cuts to Medicare. Sure, a lot of it has been clothed in small-government rhetoric, but (as pointed out upthread) Romney leads the polls for 2012 GOP presidential candidate. Romney ain’t a small government guy.

            We can sit here and discuss nuances in anarchism and minarchism all day, but the American public at large really only cares about making sure they get a big cut of the federal money pie.

          2. Ahh, libertarians and their utter concern with the “freedom” to pay outrageous prices for shitty insurance that betrays you when you really need it.

            I have lived in Japan, and was covered by their system while working there. Please explain how I was less “free” there than I am here.

            There, for a mere 4% of my salary, matched by my employer, and a moderate copay, I could go to any doctor anytime anywhere, even without an appointment really, fill out virtually no paperwork, and never worry once about whether I was covered or not.

            Here, I am paying >$5000 for my own coverage AND all sorts of taxes for Medicare, Medicaid and the VA (which probably add up to more than the 4+4 I was paying in Japan), have all sorts of regulations about which doctors I can see, have LONGER wait times and five times the paperwork, and have had at least for times in my life where I was uninsured, and two more where I was “insured” by sketchy individual plans that only a fool would trust.

            Boy, that sure sounds like FREEDOM to me, baby! Yeah!

            1. Were you free to not fork over that 4%, Chony? So no, you weren’t free.

              1. Between Medicare, Medicaid, the VA, and a host of other government health care initiatives, I am *already* paying something similar here….AND I still have to pay for private insurance.

                No, I was not “free” to skip out on their system. It was an utterly trivial sacrifice for an incredible amount of gain. The fact that libertarians are willing to sell all sorts of profits and security for utterly trivial and abstract tidbits of hypothetical freedom is why you guys and your ideology will never get anywhere.

            2. Chad confuses abundance with freedom. If I have free shit that other people pay for while crushing the economy and productive classes, then I must be free. He thinks that if it exists, he has a right to it, and he doesn’t even realize his system destroys both abundance and freedom. He talks endlessly about how spending for the poor will help them, but spending for the poor crushes them through inflation and price redistribution, forever entrenching the rich above the poor. He doesn’t understand this. His ignorance is too precious for him. He doesn’t understand how Germany, where I live, has by far the best economy in Europe and has 0% growth. Why is that? Why are the new ideas not stemming from Germany? Why are productive people leaving Germany for Switzerland and the US? Why are Japan, Sweden, Denmark, Norway, Germany, England, France, and all of these socialist paradises stagnating? And when it all burns down, and it will, Chad and the others will point their fingers at the productive classes. They won’t even stop to wonder what happened to all of those great technologies that would have existed without their interference, because they are blind to the unseen. It’s a pity that the Chads of the world have the ability to vote. We’d all have more things and more freedom without them.

              Not to mention my friend who lives in Japan and was advised by his doctor to wait till he returns to the US to get an operation, because the Japanese were using outdated technology. Luckily for my friend, he had that opportunity. If you’re Japanese, you just have to depend on a stick in your mouth and biting the bullet. Only an idiot conflates coverage with care.

              Only a selfish, self-centered, entitlement-minded prick would demand others to pay for his health care while having a computer to write down this drivel, a TV, a place to live, a phone, and so forth. This is why socialism is the king of selfish philosophies. If you have such an objection to the way things are done in the insurance industry, start your own insurance company and do what you think is fair. Oh, that’s right. You won’t, because you are a selfish hypocrite who believes that others should have to invest their money in those things but not you yourself. I’m sick of this infantile half-wits who populate and ruin our society. They make us all worse off and are so dumb that they think they are making us better off. The Chads of the world are enemies of progress and humanity. They must be stopped.

              1. Why are productive people leaving Germany for Switzerland and the US? Why are Japan, Sweden, Denmark, Norway, Germany, England, France, and all of these socialist paradises stagnating

                They aren’t. Their per-capita incomes and worker productivity is growing at similar rates to that of the US, actually.

                I have lived in both Europe and Japan, and I can assure you, I was every bit or more “free” from a practical perspective than I am in the US.

                1. I live here now. It’s happening. Read Der Spiegel or any leftist newspaper here. They’re complaining about the exodus, wage dumping, zero growth. Maybe you lived here before the shit hit the fan, but it’s getting worse and worse here at a faster pace.

                  You still keep confusing freedom with scarcity. You’ll never be free b/c you die, you must eat, you must drink, you must breathe. Your time is scarce. Your problem is that you don’t understand scarcity and economics. Your arguments are great arguments against nature, but they are incredibly ineffective against the free market. Being free does not mean having capital, which is what you seem to think, which is an absurd position.

                  1. Uhhh, as if it isn’t getting worse here in the US as well?

                    Germany is actually doing much better with respect to the meltdown than the US.

                    I defined freedom from a practical point of view: a freedom that I can only hypothetically exercise due to lack of resources or time is not worth very much, nor is an abstract freedom from regulation that I would rarely exercise anyway.

                    Freedom is not only about what I am allowed to do under the law, but what I actually CAN do in practice.

                    Ask yourself this: Who is more free?

                    1: A lone man, starving and trapped on a desert island

                    2: A Wall Street tycoon

                    According to your libertarian logic, the answer is #1. That, of course, is absurd, and proves that there is something wrong with your logic at a fundamental level.

                    How are you any less free there in Germany today than I am here in the states? Can you not go where you want, say what you want, and associate with whom you want? Yes, you pay somewhat higher taxes, but on the other hand, you don’t have to pay for things with your own money that I do. The difference is minor.

                    1. Oh, I love these statist hypotheticals. Your question points out your absurd style of thinking. Yes, the lone man on a desert island doesn’t have the resources the Wall St. tycoon may have. In this way, his ability to do things is limited. No one is claiming otherwise. However, if the Wall St. tycoon has to pay 50% taxes, then we can say that he has more capital to do things, but he is less free to do them. A better analogy would be:

                      1) A Wall St. tycoon that pays 50% taxes.

                      2) A Wall St. tycoon that pays 0% taxes.

                      Now, who has both more ability to do things and more freedom? This is the proper question. You couldn’t pose it, because you know it would make you wrong. You had to use a man with no resources and technology vs. a man with resources and technology created by the free market. Once again, your understanding of scarcity and economics is laughable.

                      How am I less free? 1) The gov’t limits my access to German markets, b/c I am not a German citizen. So, yes, I am not as free as in America. 2) It is funny you mention freedom of speech. You cannot protest here without a permit from the local Kreisverwaltungsreferat, but you can’t do that b/c all of the local parties buy up the spots. Freedom of speech is not respected here in Germany like in America. Sure, you can say what you want to, except for anything having to do with Nazism. Also, you have state-run TV, which limits your freedom to hear differing opinions. The amount of ignorance in Europe is staggering as a result. 3) You cannot go where you want, b/c mobility is limited here by a gov’t registration system. 4) You pay 60% taxes. That is more than a little. I can’t tell you how many Germans I have talked to who want to flee this system before it crashes, so the difference is massive. 5) You still pay for things here that the bureaucracy doesn’t cover. You have to pay out of pocket for medicine that the bureaucracy doesn’t keep on its list. Not to mention the massive transfer of wealth from taxation itself. Germany has over 50% of the world’s laws. 6) You should have to pay for things with your own money. People produced them with their own money. You have no right to force others to labor for you. You have no claim upon their property. If your claim is that no one has the right to their property, then you cannot justify anyone taking it. 7) I have to pay a tax if I have a religious denomination here. If I choose to leave the Church, I have to pay a fee. 8) I have to pay extra for products considered unfriendly to the environment. 9) The German bureaucracy puts people into education courses to hide their true unemployment statistics which are abysmal. 10) School choice is limited, b/c everything is basically state-run. 11) I can’t build any house I want. I have to build according to state standards. 12) I have no way to defend myself here b/c gun laws are prohibitive. 13) If I want to go fishing, the state requires me to take courses to get a license that costs 1500. 14) A driving license costs over 2500 Euros, b/c of state regulation. 15) Food and basic products are overly expensive b/c of regulation. 16) There are price controls on book-selling, so opening a store is almost impossible. 17) These are just some examples of how crushing taxes make life almost impossible to live b/c everything is more expensive than it should be. This is where America is going, too.

                      Last, the proper question is not which is better, America or other countries, b/c America is almost as socialist as any other. The proper question is what would these countries be like without the crushing tax systems, the police states, the loss of prosperity and technology caused by regulation. Libertarians do not like the status quo. We want to privatize everything and force people to compete. We want to destroy the corporatist banking structure that finances big government, crushing the poor into a spiral they can’t get out of. The irony of what you promote is that it causes and keeps permanent the very disparity in wealth you despise through the FED and deficit spending. Inflation is the hidden tax that destroys wealth and keeps the poor impoverished. And your answer is more of that.

            3. You forgot to mention how much Japanese care sucks.

              1. How so? Their doctors have the same kind of education ours do, the waits are shorter, and they have more of fancy gadgets (MRIs, CATs, etc) per capita than we do.

        2. And I see a future where all American people suddenly realize Bush was right all along and really an awesome president-not a dumbass-and solar energy can be drilled from the ground and we eat CO2 and shit diamonds and the next Transformers-Avatar movie has great storytelling and dialog.

          Wow, being delusional is fun. I finally understand lefties and Bush supporters.

          1. In this future, does Michael Bay get executed?

            1. No.

              He’s forced to watch his movies over and over and over a la A Clockwork Orange, with Slim Whitman and Zamfir music playing in the background.

              While on life support until he croaks.

          2. Which part of my post do you disagree with? Do you think there really will be death panels? Do you think there won’t be any deathly ill people who get care that they wouldn’t have otherwise?

            But that’s OK, just ignore my points, call me a “liberal troll”, and make fun of my name with more Gump jokes. This kind of behavior shows you have ZERO argument to back your position up.

            1. …”doctors” who threatened to quit if they got paid what their services were worth, rather than whatever they felt like charging…

              Dunno about the others, but this bit sure caught my eye. It’s a neat summation of communism – and I can assure you a vast majority of Americans are not down with that. Do tell: why do you think doctors should not be allowed to charge whatever the hell they want to for their services? Do you think the cost of your services – whatever they may be – should be set by the government too?

              1. why do you think doctors should not be allowed to charge whatever the hell they want to for their services

                Because they are members of a cartel.

                1. Because they are members of a cartel.

                  This is interesting. Pray, Chony, who has set up this cartel, and how is it perpetuated?

                  1. They’re called the AMA. They tell med schools how many graduates they can produce.

                2. Yeah, the high cost of medical care couldn’t have anything to do with regulation.

                3. Not a cartel but a guild

            2. There already are death panels; they are the bureacrats at your for-profit insurance company.

              1. Yeah, the high cost of insurance couldn’t have anything to do with regulation.

              2. So, we replace them with bigger bureaucrats. F’in’ genius!

        3. uh… you DO realize that none of the “good” parts of your bill are going to happen until 2014, and all of the bad parts are going to start sooner right?

        4. Forrest, most people here will think you must be an idiot for posting this, so I’ll try to indulge you, so you don’t come away thinking we don’t have counterpoints. First, your bill won’t come into effect until 2014. So, most likely, there will be no tangible benefits until at least then. However, the taxation starts now. How do you think people will react to higher taxes and no new services? If it’s such a rush, why wait till then? Are you saying from 2010 to 2014 you don’t care about people dying from a lack of health care?

          Death panels: gov’t can only spend a finite amount based on tax money or printing money and spreading the cost through inflation. However, people’s problems will always be greater than that finite amount. Therefore, bureaucrats will have to decide what they can cover and not cover. People will die as a result. You also must count the people that will die as a result of lost technological advances destroyed by regulation. It happens all the time in Europe. People die because they don’t have access to American technology since the EU bureaucrats won’t approve them. They also die while waiting in line for a surgery. Sure, they were covered, but how did that help? So, the whole system is a giant death panel whether you can wrap your mind around it or not.

          Green energy furnaces: I have no idea what you’re referring to here, but we have no problem with green energy as long as it is provided in the free market and not forced upon it. You must destroy other parts of the economy to finance green energy through subsidies. Once again, you pervert the market and destroy other possible technological advances in the meanwhile.

          If our 40% gov’t-run system is law-of-the-jungle, how do you think 100% will look with limited resources based on a limited tax base and stagnation in medical technology? What about all the people who will die from this lack of technology, which happens here in Europe? Does your heart bleed for them?

          Governments cannot control costs. The costs are still there. Governments can shift the costs. This was the great lesson of the Soviet Union. Price controls don’t work. They merely hide the costs. The real costs then cripple the system, which is what’s happening already in Europe. Then there’s the ethical principle. There’s no rational basis upon which to say that doctors shouldn’t be allowed to charge whatever they want. If you want to change this, become a doctor and charge less. You’re placing the moral burden on someone else when it should be placed on yourself.

          Controlling costs through government is socialism. It’s the definition of it, because you can’t control costs. Government always increases costs and then socializes the costs by spreading it through society. It has never worked and never will. See all of human history for a reference.

          You may very well be right about the fate of the GOP, but by that time the government will no longer exist, b/c both parties will have spent it into the ground. The irony of everything is that the system you support increases costs, punishes poor people through inflation and high taxation, destroys technological innovation, limits access, and the list goes on and on. Oh, and it’s immoral to make others work as slaves to support your moral preferences. Sort of left that out.

          I hope this is a start for you.

          1. uh… you DO realize that none of the “good” parts of your bill are going to happen until 2014, and all of the bad parts are going to start sooner right?

            You are a liar.

            Tomorrow, your family cannot be denied insurance because your kid has cancer, or asthma, or diabetes, or any other pre-existing condition. Do you need me to dig up some horror stories concerning this one?

            Only Satan himself could not consider this good thing.

            1. You’re right. They won’t be denied insurance, but that doesn’t mean they’ll get care. In fact, this is the biggest myth about universal health care. People are “covered,” but they don’t get the care. It’s why people in Europe die while waiting for surgeries. Sure, they have insurance. It just didn’t do them any good.

              Do you need all the horror stories from state-run systems, including the deaths associated with the loss in technology, bureaucratic dithering, lack of tax money? Greece was the first in a long line of European economies about to fall into an abyss. The socialist paradise is crumbling from within. Chad’s solution? Build a bigger one.

              Our system is bad, but nationalizing it is the worst answer possible. It will only enrich the insurance execs and gov’t coffers at the expense of the poorest in society. Do you care about them at all or only about yourself?

              1. You really haven’t been paying attention, have you? 😛

              2. It’s why people in Europe die while waiting for surgeries. Sure, they have insurance. It just didn’t do them any good.

                Do your homework. Our wait times are pretty good, but not the best. In fact, our wait times for primary care are pretty bad. Our wait times for expensive, high profit surgeries, however, are pretty short. I wonder why…

                Most of the long wait times you are yapping about are for non-threatening lifestyle enhancements such as hip-replacement surgeries.

                Thank you for conceding this is just about which system works best, however. It has been studied again and again by the pros – and you lose handily. Our system gets far more people killed unneccesarily than those of European countries.

                1. Once again, it is not about which system is better, b/c they are all bad for the same reason. They are overregulated and cost too much. The funny thing about what the experts or pros studies is that they don’t include the people who die from the lack of technology and diverted resources. This is always the case with statist planning. You also don’t count the amount of people our system saves through technology alone that wouldn’t have survived in a European system. But again, this is not about which system is better. This is about how to provide the best care for everyone at the lowest cost, and neither system does that well. The only answer is privatization and competition.

                2. “Killed”

                  *snicker*

                  Hyperbole much, Comrade Chad?

                  1. It’s not hyperbole at all, LG. The fact that you think it is means that you don’t actually care about facts and haven’t done your homework.

                    The most commonly cited number is 45000 deaths per year due to lack of insurance. You could quibble about the methodology, but that would only change the conclusions at the margins.

    2. Fucking awesome. Fuck Stanfurd.

      1. Is that Jimmy Stewart announcing that game?

        More trick plays! This year’s Super Bowl proved it: Football needs more trick plays!

        1. Ha! He did have some thick vowels in there.

        2. Onside kicks are not trick plays.

  16. It might be a butterly effect thing, but I can’t help but go back to the GOP bots who ran Chuck Hagel out of office in NE for daring to question the Iraq war strategy. As far as I’m concerned, this whole thing is on them. No way Nelson beats Hagel for that seat if they had just left him alone.

    1. They also won some really clsoe Senate races (as in under 500 votes) in North Dakota and Washington state. They won a lot of elections within the margin of ACORN. But, after this, they won’t even be able to cheat their way into office.

    2. But cheer up. In 2008 Libertarians helped punish the Republicans. And we are now out of Iraq and the Patriot Act has been repealed. That is something isn’t it?

      1. No, we didn’t “help punish” anyone. At least, not those of us who voted Libertarian in the general election.

        1. Reason wrote article after article in the fall of 08 about how the Republicans must lose and lose big. Well, they got their wish.

          1. Not the same thing.

          2. They lost because McCain was and is not a true conservative, and the thought of President Palin was too much for the left (and many on the right) to bear.

            1. Don’t forget McCain suspended his campaign to pass TARP.

              1. Don’t forget that McCain’s campaign was running about even with Obama until he suspended his campaign to pass TARP, and then the bottom fell out.

                TARP is where McCain and Palin went on my “never, ever get my vote” list.

              2. He suspended his campaign so American car companies could get their share of American taxpayer dollars.

                1. TARP sucks, but McCain nobley did what he thought was right. He’s three times the man any of you are.

                  If he had run at some time when the GOP didn’t need a rebuking I would have been glad to vote for him.

                  Reason shit on him of course, but there is nothing nefarious about that. One of their contributors had just published a book about the guy, and the hard right had hated him for a long time.

                  1. TARP sucks, but McCain nobley did what he thought was right. He’s three times the man any of you are.

                    Grow up. The lack of critical thinking combined with the fawning celebrity/hero worship in your post is sickening.

                  2. MNG, any man as good as you claim McCain is, wouldn’t have shat upon the First Amendment by joining forces with Russ Feingold.

                    Period.

                  3. MNG,

                    If McCain had had guts, he would have done the right thing, and announced that there was no way he was going to reward deadbeats with the hard-earned money of tax-payers.

                    Without politics, McCain is nothing, which makes him a lap-dog for his backers. They yanked his leash, and like a good obediant little dog, he did their bidding.

                    1. Note how MNG says “TARP sucks”, then praises McCain for supporting it.

                      But McCain’s biggest crime is his collaboration with Russ Feingold on “campaign finance reform”. People should always remember that act of nigh-treason.

      2. If every Libertarian had voted for McCain, he still would have lost. By a lot. From your keyboard to God’s monitor that Libertarians were that much of a political force.

        1. True enough, but I believe the Libertarian vote helped get a Democrat Senator elected somewhere out West some years ago.

    3. Nelson didn’t beat Hagel, they served at the same time. Hagel was the senior senator and Nelson the Junior. Nelson took over for Bob Kerry after the 2000 election, Hagel took over for James Exon after the 1996 election.

  17. Off-topic, but I’m gonna regard this as the weekend open thread:

    Anyone else think that maybe the kid should be charged with trespassing / unauthorized use of store equipment rather than PC bullshit like “harassment and bias intimidation”?

    WASHINGTON TOWNSHIP, N.J.? A 16-year-old boy who police said made an announcement at Walmart ordering all black people in the southern New Jersey store to leave was charged with harassment and bias intimidation, authorities said Saturday.

    The boy, whose name is not being released because he is a juvenile, went on the intercom at Walmart’s Washington Township store Sunday evening and calmly announced: “Attention, Walmart customers: All black people, leave the store now,” police said.

    The teen was arrested Friday and released to the custody of his parents; police did not know whether he had a lawyer.

    “This was an extremely disturbing event on many levels,” Gloucester County Prosecutor Sean Dalton said at a news conference. “Any statements like these that can cause harm or grave concern must be addressed as quickly we possibly can.”

    Dalton said the case would be handled in juvenile court in neighboring Atlantic County, where the boy lives. He would not say whether the boy has a criminal record, citing the teen’s age, and would not disclose the teen’s race, saying that did not factor into the investigation.

    The 16-year-old has been charged with harassment and bias intimidation.

    Authorities would not say whether the announcement was planned or made impulsively. Police said they were also investigating a teenage boy who accompanied the suspect to the store, but the other boy has not been charged.

    Although a manager quickly went on the intercom system and apologized for the remark, many customers expressed their anger to store management. Some community members said Saturday that they’ve heard reports of similar incidents happening at the store in recent months that were not reported to police.

    “We are concerned about that, and we’re looking into these incidents. We want to work with the community to make sure these types of incidents don’t happen,” said Loretta Winters, president of the Gloucester County chapter of the NAACP.

    Winters said she hopes the boy will get counseling and be educated about sensitivity so he can understand the consequences of his actions.

    1. “We are concerned about that, and we’re looking into these incidents. We want to work with the community to make sure these types of incidents don’t happen,” said Loretta Winters, president of the Gloucester County chapter of the NAACP.

      Winters said she hopes the boy will get counseling and be educated about sensitivity so he can understand the consequences of his actions.

      It would have been much more humane if someone just kicked his ass in the store than to let those who want to politicize every aspect of human existence get a hold of the punk.

      1. Is anyone but me disturbed that it hasn’t been ruled a violation of the First Amendment to charge someone with “bias intimidation”?

        It should be illegal to hijack store equipment and make an announcement — the content of that speech, however, should be irrelevant and not subject to prosecution, no matter how obnoxious it is.

        1. It’s not like the kid broadcast a threat, for the love of God. People have just gone crazy.

          1. Indeed. This is a stupid teenage boy prank, not the arrival of a KKK lynch mob. It’s offensive but about as meaningful in terms of “civil rights” as some jerk drawing a swastika on a bathroom wall.

        2. I actually agree here.

          If he had said “all rich people leave the store” would it have been any worse? The content of what he said seems irrelevant to me…

          1. Bigoted against rich people, MNG?

          2. MNG|3.20.10 @ 6:41PM|#
            “I actually agree here.
            If he had said “all rich people leave the store” would it have been any worse?”

            Cut your welfare payments, did they?

      2. Agreed.

        Let the kid get a bit of real world social darwinism as opposed to a “PC reeducation camp”.

        A free society does have a knack of correcting its members mistakes.

        1. Agreed. The “reeducation camp” will likely have the opposite of its intended effect.

    2. Christ, it was a fucking prank. WTF is going on in this country?

      1. Charge him with trespassing. I don’t understand what “bias intimidation” is.

        1. A doubleplus ungood thoughtcrime.

      2. Well, it was a prank of considerable shitheadedness. I’m with Alan: a quick and thorough but not crippling or life threatening asskicking would have suited the crime more or less exactly.

        ‘Course such ad hoc “justice” comes with it’s own problems.

        1. Like bruised knuckles. Ouch.

  18. CNN is reporting that teabagger protesters called Rep. John Lewis a nigger and Rep. Barney Frank a faggot as they were moving between the capitol and their offices. Nice messaging, morons.

    1. Well, it’s true, isn’t it?

      1. Ask Robert Byrd he’d know.

      2. No. Barney Frank does not drive a Harley

      3. No. Barney Frank does not drive a Harley

    2. Show me the videotape.

      1. Hearsay is good enough. The blogs run on it.

    3. They got that on video?

    4. Nice messaging, morons.

      I agree. CNN’s message has been pretty transparent from the beginning: they loves them some Obamacare.

    5. I did a search on CNN’s site and saw nothing about this.

      Foxnews is reporting that Pelosi called the protesters “smelly little people” and misspoke several times, calling the health care bill “single payer.”

    6. And H&R is reporting that Tony is calling protestors “teabaggers”. Pot, meet kettle.

    7. Link(s), Tony.

      1. Suderman linked to it on his twitter

    8. Tony, I was watching Back to School the other day, and I was impressed by Robert Downey’s performance even back then. I’d say he’s matured into one of Hollywood’s finest actors, wouldn’t you?

      1. I prefer Dread Zeppelin’s cover of Stairway to Heaven. What do you think, Epi?

        1. I prefer not to hear “Stairway to Heaven” at all.

          1. My first response was, ‘that could only mean you have never heard Dread Zeppelin’s cover’ but then it occurred to me, I was thinking of ‘Black Dog’ not ‘Stairway to Heaven’ which would probably be tedious even with Dread Zep antics included.

            I vaguely remember seeing them live with Southern Culture on the Skids, but I don’t recall them playing ‘SWTH’, but then I spent those Summers wasted.

            1. SCOTS was the shit as well. B-52s without the beach references. Brilliant!

    9. Tony what do you think of Beck’s album The Information? I feel like it falls somewhere between Sea Change and Guero, at least on sonic terms. Sort of a kindred musical spirit, wouldn’t you say?

    10. I’d bet the idiots shouting n-r and f-g are Democrat plants. Probably SEIU workers on their day off.

      1. True, the idea that out of thousands of right wing protesters, a few might be racist or homophobic is pretty far fetched.

        1. I didn’t say that. True, there are racists and idiots EVERYWHERE, but to say the entirety of the right-of-center is that way…

          1. The interesting question is why nobody in the GOP wants to condemn this behavior. Instead they stoke it.

            1. Does your side condemn the behavior of the far-far leftists, or do they give them a wink’n’nod?

          2. It’s especially interesting given that the Nazis were by any rational measure leftist nationalists. There are still left-Nazis in Germany. Amazing.

          3. It’s especially interesting given that the Nazis were by any rational measure leftist nationalists. There are still left-Nazis in Germany. Amazing.

      2. It wasn’t racists, it was niggers!

    11. Clearly those people are representative of everyone who is opposed to this bill. Nice logical fallacy, dipshit.

    12. Tony,
      Your mom has snacks for you. Turn off the computer and go upstairs.

    13. Can you prove that these alleged teabaggers weren’t black and/or gay?

      1. Jim, you have a point

        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v…..re=related

    14. I read somewhere that Tony is a homophobic, racial paternalist who believes that the only way minorities can rise above is through the beneficent hand of the great white philanthropist. Wait, I think Tony was the star in Avatar.

      1. Tony, is a hot gay guy and he is a star when it comes to his remarks on Reason.

  19. CNN is reporting that teabagger protesters

    Your term, or theirs?

    Retard.

    1. Tony still hasn’t provided the links he alluded to earlier.

  20. Calling this clusterfuck a “health care bill” is a monumental misnomer.

    1. And with 110 new bureaucracies supposedly created, one can only hope that we’ll get a new “Office of Clusterfuck Mitigation”

  21. Part of me really wants to see them ram this through just because the backlash in November will hopefully be large enough to grind DC to a halt and slow down the idiocy (at least for a little while).

    1. Me too, except we all know that any government program, once it gets going, is there long after the cockroaches have died off. Let’s just hope that the whole thing, if it does make it through, is tied up in court for as long as the program would last.

    2. No! Punish the Republicans MOAR !
      The Dems haven’t legalized teh herb and forgiven my student loans yet.

      1. The “cosmotarian overlord” style sock puppetry is lame and not funny. He sucks and you suck. Stop.

        1. “Raaaaacist!!”

      2. Notice Cosmotarian Overlord is always arguing against what commenters at reason are saying…

  22. Winters said she hopes the boy will get counseling and be educated about sensitivity so he can understand the consequences of his actions.

    Is she talking about the President?

    Because, well…

  23. For months now, most of the papers have been saying “it’s going to pass anytime now”. If they had the votes, this train-wreck would be law. It isn’t law yet. Which means they don’t have the votes (yet).

    Murphy’s law implies the longer this thing drags on, the greater the chance something will go wrong.

    At least one can always hope.

    1. “the longer this thing drags on…”

      Gee, could that be why they’re trying to pass it on a Sunday? And on Christmas Eve, and on a Saturday night?

      Shows you how politically toxic this thing is that you have to pass it when regular people are on trips, watching basketball, celebrating religious ceremonies with family…

      Spine less.

  24. I hope you all are keeping one eye on TV1. “Black Belt Jones”, followed by “Foxy Brown”, followed by “Cleopatra Jones” (on now), followed by “Cleopatra Jones and the Golden Casino”. If they could have just worked in “Shaft”, it’d be the ultimate Blaxploitation Saturday EVER!

    “Healthcare” debate? Pffft. Queue up the Curtis Mayfield and Isaac Hayes, my brothers and sisters. There is no justice – there’s just…us…

    Bread and circuses, baby. Bread and circuses.

    1. People get ready, there’s a train a’comin, don’t need no ticket, just praise the Biden.

    2. Biden’s tombstone should read:

      ‘He brought mass transit to those who already had a superior mode of travel from the exact place they wished to start their journey to the exact place they wished to go. Still, a noble gesture, right?’

    3. it’d be the ultimate Blaxploitation Saturday EVER

      While omitting “Superfly”?

      “Blackula”?

      AND “Black to the Future”?

      I admit one or all of those might be made up.

      1. I could only DREAM of something like that. You never get all the really good movies together – I don’t want to get greedy.

        You dig? Solid.

  25. This will pass. The real trick will be to figure out who got what for their vote and exposing it.

  26. No Coffey? I want to see that weaponized afro again!

  27. If not for the heroic bravery of the Capitol Police those Teabaggers would have beat Congressman Lewis just like they did on the Edmund Pettus Bridge!

    You can here them all yelling “Nigger”

    1. That’s the best they got? I didn’t hear any profanity, even, much less “nigger”.

      They chanted at the Congressscum as they walked by! Teh horrorses!

      1. If you follow the “tweets” the consensus is that someone probably yelled it. It ain’t on the video and the only reports of racial slurs are from the Congressman of Color themselves. Most likely, it never happened.

        1. The narrative is right, but the facts are wrong.

          1. Rep. Emanuel Cleaver didn’t press charges. Maybe because he knew it was a false-flag attack.

            Don’t put it past the liberals to plant themselves among right-of-center groups. The obverse happens, as well.

  28. Kevin back again (Not The Other Kevin-different person) – One more point, this idea of the courts overthrowing Obamacare is a complete bullshit fantasy. It is not going to happen.

    One of the most destructive things that FDR did was threaten to pack the court. Ever since then, The Supreme Court beyond Civil Rights Legislation has refrained from ruling against the Legislative branch. Especially, when both branches of government are controlled by the same political party.

  29. So, just to be clear: We’re getting crammed Iraq War x 1,000,000 crammed down our throats (unpopular, ideological fantasy, massively expensive, dishonestly sold-except this time the Dem’s/MSM are cool with it!)and what bloggers are worrying about is……a small group of nitwits in a crowd of tens of thousands saying something stupid in a time of high emotions.

    Good work guys, good work.

    Weathermen/etc.,- ‘Angry Voice of a generation’

    A group of angry rednecks (distinctly not bombing/killing/setting fire to anyone)shouting some stupid things- ‘Embodiment of all that is wrong on the Right’

    Okey. Dokey.

    1. So, just to be clear: We’re getting crammed Iraq War x 1,000,000 crammed down our throats (unpopular

      A nitpick, the Iraq War was quite popular* when it kicked off

      The American People (TM) like war well enough – it’s losing they hate

      *For example the ’02 congressional election was essentially a refferendum on whether it should happen or not, and the Republican gains in the house on that issue represented only the second or third time in a century that a party with control of Congress and the White House was able to pick up seats in a midterm.

  30. Where’s that Reason “Who ya gonna vote for” thread?

    Might be interesting to rehash after tomorrow’s vote.

      1. inconvenient, isn’t it?

        1. Those who fail to get linked to history are condemned to repeat it.

        2. Sigh. Once again: (a) How many actual reason staffers, as opposed to contributors who have just written an article for reason here or there said they would vote for Obama as protest against the Republicans? Like two; (b) How many said they would vote for Obama because they support him or thought he was a good candidate? Zero.

  31. In June 2005 scientists at the University of Pittsburgh’s Safar Center for Resuscitation Research announced they had managed to bring dogs back to life, most of them without brain damage, by draining the blood out of the dogs’ bodies and injecting a low temperature solution into their circulatory systems, which in turn keeps the bodies alive in stasis. After 3 hours of being clinically dead, their blood was returned to their circulatory systems, and the dogs were revived by delivering an electric shock to their hearts. The heart started pumping the blood around the frozen body, and the dogs were brought back to life.

    While most of the dogs were fine, a few of the revived dogs had severe nervous and movement coordination damage, causing them to be mentally disabled, and demonstrating behavior that was deemed “zombie” like. This has been pushed further by the media which named them “zombie dogs”. There is concern that this technique, if used on humans could result in brain damage similar to those suffered by some of the dogs in the experiment. In extreme cases, doctors can now use induced hypothermia which reduces brain and heart activity to a minimum. This allows doctors to have more time to heal or diagnose a patient.

    On 20 January 2006, doctors from the Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston announced they had placed pigs in suspended animation by a similar technique. The pigs were anaesthetised and a major blood loss was induced. After they lost about half their blood the remaining blood was replaced with a chilled saline solution. As the body temperature reached 10 ?C (50 ?F) the damaged blood vessel was repaired and the blood was returned. The method was tested 200 times with a 90 percent success rate.

    1. And that, ladies and gentlemen, is how you win a thread.

      Zoology Saturday enlightens the stupid (m)asses without so much as their assent, let alone a word of thanks.

      1. Did a headcount. Everyone here was already aware of that research. I could also link you to earlier success with these techniques going back to the 80’s if you like. Well, as the kids say, thanks for playing.

    2. This explains Harry Reid.

    3. Finally my long-wished-for zombie apocalypse will finally come to pass. AK-47s and automatic shotguns, here I come!!!

      1. Interesting, considering that Night of the Living Dead was set in the SW Pennsylvania countryside…but this smells more of Herbie West.

  32. Call me a pessimist if you want but somehow I think that we’ll be feeling this way soon….
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v…..8&NR=1

    1. Can’t access at work, but I hope it’s the Howard Dean scream

      1. On the subject of movies relating to the world if/when this passes… Anyone seen Starship Troopers?

        ..Would you like to know more?

        1. we’re gonna get attacked by bad acting and giant bugs?!?

        2. Anyone seen Starship Troopers?

          You must be new around here 🙂

        3. And unafraid to inspire multi-hundred post sci-fi wankery.

        4. Starship Troopers is only the epitome of science fiction-based allegorical storytelling, but certain elements around here just want to cut the film down because it’s “not cool” to appreciate a movie about duty and honor and citizenship and Doogie Howser versus space insects.

          1. I agree with this.

            1. You’re wrong.

      2. It’s the Planet of the Apes scene, “You maniacs! You blew it up!…Damn you all to hell!”

    2. It was either that or Picard-as-Locutus. Trek’s been a bit too overdone lately so I thought I’d change the pace a bit.

      1. too overdone?

        1. repeatedly redundant too

  33. The era of “free” healthcare is at hand. Libertarians, you might as well join the outbrust of joyous songs that will sweep the nation when socialized medicine becomes the law of the land.

    It is your destiny, destiny, destiny, destiny, destiny, destiny…… (echoes)…..

    destiny….

    1. DDR has become self-aware. HCR is about to pass. The end is truly nigh.

      1. Deutsche Demokratische Republik?

  34. It’s totally immature of me, but I’ve spent the last two days harassing commenters on Huffington Post with inconvenient facts about the health care reform plan. I can’t help it, it’s not just that the commenters are so consistently ignorant, but they’re so smug and self-congratulatory about it.

    1. If you want to really experience surreality, go to FireDogLake, where they all hate the bill because it is insufficiently socialist (and for the totally rational reason that it is a giant corporate welfare bill). As a matter of fact, not to pull a quasi-Godwin, but this bill is fascistic in nature.

      1. Those people at least understand what’s actually in the bill.

      2. The ones that really get me are the ones that dismiss any facts they don’t like as “Republican talking points.”

      3. Mussolini was a fascist, so the mere presence of the word “fascistic” is not an auto-Godwin.

        Loophole, I know, but still technically correct.

    2. What you call immature many call sporting.

      It’s more fun to mess with them in pairs, you can really get them going.

  35. They don’t have the votes. Ain’t gonna get em.

    1. From your keyboard to God’s monitor, as a wise poster recently waxed.

  36. This is the Super Bowl? I feel cheated.

  37. “STUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUPAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAK!!!”

    Good morning, Reasonoids!

    1. The beauty of a republican form of governance is that one guy can derail this entire barbaric bill.

  38. And where will it end? Nobody knows. Only thing for sure is, if it does get passed, it will be so “watered down” that we will never see any actual benefit from it.

    Lou
    http://www.web-invisibility.at.tc

  39. the totally rational reason that it is a giant corporate welfare bill

    Don’t forget to ask them why the insurance companies’ share prices go *up* every time the media declare this a done deal.

    1. Just amused myself with a 10 Day graph of Aetna:

      Gosh… It’s gone up!

      Funny how screwed we all are, isn’t it? Oh right… I don’t mean “funny” I meant, scary & depressing.

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  42. Super Bowl proved that small towns can touch the stars.This is proof that sport enriches the human soul,just like poetry.
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    Walter William Safar, poet/writer

    http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb…..&x=16&y=24

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