Lawmakers Who Pushed For Mental Health Focus After Newtown Are Blocking Millions From Getting Help

In the wake of last December’s shooting massacre in Newtown, CT, many conservative lawmakers and state leaders called for strengthening America’s broken mental health care system. But now, the GOP’s stubborn opposition to Obamacare’s Medicaid expansion is preventing 1.2 million poor and mentally ill Americans from getting basic mental services, according to an analysis by the National Alliance on Mental Illness NAMI.

Republican politicians have argued extensively for shoring up the U.S. mental health regimen to prevent future shootings. Rep. Louie Gohmert R-TX said that mental health issues have “languished” for decades, and that the two parties can easily come together to fix them. Sen. Ted Cruz R-TX voted against the compromise Manchin-Toomey background check bill, offering alternative legislation focused on school security and mental health resources. Florida Rep. Ander Crenshaw R also cited mental health services as an important part of addressing gun violence, as did Sen. Marco Rubio R-FL, who signed onto Cruz’s gun safety bill.

Despite their professed zeal for making the U.S. mental health regimen stronger, however, these members of Congress don’t support the programs like Obamacare’s Medicaid expansion that could actually help ensure Americans’ access to those benefits.

via Lawmakers Who Pushed For Mental Health Focus After Newtown Are Blocking Millions From Getting Help | ThinkProgress.

Yet another datapoint regarding the endemic hypocrisy of the GOP.  After the Newtown massacres, these same people claimed that limiting guns wasn’t the answser, expanding access to mental health services was a better way to go.

And now…they are trying to stop any funding going to their own “better” solution.  That’s hypocrisy on a very high level.  GOP-level.

When does Paul Ryan support multiple stimuli and sending free money to every American? Take a wild guess…

Paul Ryan Defended Stimulus — When George W. Bush Wanted It In 2002 (VIDEO) – The Huffington Post

“What we’re trying to accomplish today with the passage of this third stimulus package is to create jobs and help the unemployed,” Ryan said, in comments unearthed by MSNBC’s “Up with Chris Hayes” and provided to HuffPost. “What we’re trying to accomplish is to pass the kinds of legislation that when they’ve passed in the past have grown the economy and gotten people back to work.”

Healthcare Hypocrisy: Republican Style

There’s a certain danger in politics of, as they say, “drinking the kool-aid”.   This is usually a reference (and it’s used by both sides) of believing one’s own rhetoric to the point of suicide  (it’s a colloquialism based on this event).

In this case we have the constantly repeated mantra coming from the right about the “huge, astonomic, likely-to-bankrupt-us” cost of the healthcare-reform legislation passed last year.  This mantra is, as per, a big lie.  Note that it wasn’t the biggest lie of 2010 (that went to saying HCR was a “government takeover“)

So on the one hand you have this “HCR is too expensive” kool-aid, which has been drunk from extensively, and on the other hand you have the official scorekeeper continue to point out how the legislation actually cuts the deficit in the logn-term, another campaign promise from the R’s (note: this is possible when you tax *and* spend, and not possible if you *cut taxes* and *spend*).

Washington (CNN) — Legislation being pushed by House Republicans to repeal President Barack Obama’s health care overhaul will add $230 billion to the federal debt by 2021, according to an analysis released Thursday by the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office.

[full article]

Then they get elected on the lie (and the CONSTANT OUTRAGE!!  ABOUT NOTHING!! THAT DISAPPEARED AFTER THE ELECTION!), then create hard and fast spending rules they should have to follow which would expose the big lie…and then quickly provide an exemption to that rule in order to provide the smoke and mirrors necessary to disguise how bad that kool-aid actually tastes. 

I love how the article puts these two statements together, it doesn’t get more succint than this…

“I don’t think anyone in this town believes that repealing Obamacare is going to increase the deficit,” [New Speaker of the House John Boehner] said.

Republicans have exempted a repeal of the health care law from new rules prohibiting legislation from adding to the federal debt.

Note that bit.  Boehner says *no one* thinks it saves money…EXCEPT FOR THE REPUBLICANS THEMSELVES (and the CBO and the Democrats….which is actually pretty much everyone).

I’d get used to this stuff.   When you are rewarded for using deceptive practices, you have zero incentive to stop doing them.

Oh, and bonus points for Boehner.  He makes sure to cover all the buzzwords.   The quote…

The people “want this bill repealed, and we are going to repeal it,” said House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio. If it is not repealed, “it will ruin the best health care system in the world … (and) will ruin our economy.”

This is a great flavor of the ole ‘aid.  It comes from guys like this (and asstarts like Frank Luntz) (note: read this linked article, it’s great background on how these lies gain flight)…

 In 2008, [Wendell Potter’s] conscience got the best of him after visiting the Remote Area Medical’s healthcare fair in Wise County, Virginia and saw people standing and sitting in long lines, waiting for free care. “They were treating people in animal stalls and barns. It looked like it might have been a war torn country. I could not believe this was the United States of America.”

Shortly after leaving his six-figure job, he decided to expose and speak out against the very practices he once defended.

In his new book, Deadly Spin: An Insurance Company Insider Speaks Out on How Corporate PR Is Killing Health Care And Deceiving Americans, he writes, “If you are among those who believe that the U.S. has the best healthcare system in the world–despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary– it’s because my fellow spinmeisters and I succeeded brilliantly at what we were paid very well to do with your premium dollars.”

“And if you were persuaded that the health care bill President Barack Obama signed into law in March 2010 was a ‘government takeover of the health care system,’ my former colleagues and I earned every penny of our handsome salaries.”

UPDATE:  The champions of Democracy also quickly disenfranchised about 4,500,000 Americans.   Expect them to try and do so to many, many more.

Dick Army led by Dick Armey marches on Washington

Dick Army Marches on Washington
The Dick Army At Work.

All those folks that don’t want to pay taxes unless it is for torture and war marched on Washington, D.C. today.

The protests, organized by Fox News and (Dick Armey’s lobbying firm) focused on how U.S. taxes should be cut to increase the deficit by even more than the $5,000,000,000,000 added during the last eight years.

“The government should be concentrating on cutting spending on all the programs, not thinking of new, wonderful ways of spending more. … I’ve voted my whole life. This is the first time in my life I’ve gotten off the couch and said, ‘I’m sick of this. It’s only three hours away, and I’m going to be there.'”

Translation, “I loved it when Reagan and Bush ran up the deficits, but now that it’s a Democrat doing so, I finally got off my couch to yell at him.”

The rampant ignorance about the current situation on health care in the U.S. was par for the course.

Another man said, “We’re here to let the government know that we do not want government involvement in our health care, nor do we want the higher taxation that comes along with such a proposal.”

“We like having a government and health care system which is the absolute worst industrialized country in the world when it comes to preventing the death of our own citizens,” he did not add. [source 1]

Not realizing their own hypocrisy, the organizers tried to paint it the protests as having absolutely nothing to do with partisanship.

What brought everything together was the Obamacare idea, which contains every odiferous objection,” Tea Party Express organizer Mark Williams said in August.


Although the Tea Party Express tour was funded by Our Country Deserves Better, a conservative political action committee, Williams said his organization is nonpartisan and that the rallies are not aimed at one politician over another, namely Obama.


“This is not people upset over one particular politician or one particular party,” Williams has said. “In fact, if you ask the Republicans in the crowd, you’ll find they are just as upset at their party as they are at the Democrats.”



[quotes from here]

I’ve mentioned this before, but I find the entire “Tea Party” movement to completely lack any sense of their own irony.  From the ‘pedia.

The Tea Party was the culmination of a resistance movement throughout British America against the Tea Act, which had been passed by the British Parliament in 1773. Colonists objected to the Tea Act for a variety of reasons, especially because they believed that it violated their right to be taxed only by their own elected representatives.

Now, instead of protesting against the right to be taxed only by their own elected representatives, they are protesting against the right to be taxed by their own elected representative.

This is like South Carolina rep Joe Wilson shouting out that Obama is a liar (when fact checking orgs all say it is Wilson who has a problem with the facts) about illegal immigrant, when he himself voted for an (unpaid for) expansion of federal benefits for…wait for it…illegal immigrants [2].

To make matters worse, none of these folks had any problems with George W. Bush cutting taxes (and increasing the deficit) by $2,500,000,000,000 (nearly 40% of which went to richest 1% of Americans, many of whom are now running these latest protests).  This simple fact exposes the hypocrisy and partisan nature of these protests.  What, you folks *just* realized that Bush doubled the national deficit….now it’s all Obama’s fault?

To make matters even more hypocritical, with all the signs I saw, and all the rhetoric I heard, I didn’t hear a single complaint about the U.S. government, under Bush and Cheney, torturing people.  I didn’t hear a single complaint about warrantless wiretaps.  Nothing about the actual abuses of power, just a bunch of whining about how people don’t want to pay for…well…anything.


A couple of observations watching the proceedings on C-Span.

Unknowing Irony Update:  I just heard Bob Marley’s “Get Up, Stand Up” as the background music.  Ummm, really?

Nazi Update: Ummm, why are they talking about Nazi’s?  Remember when Hitler proposed providing all Germans, regardless of race, religion, or sexual orientation?  Yea, me neither.

Final hypocritical statement:  One of the FreedomWorks.gove folks (a conversative political lobbying firm) just told everyone they were now “Community Organizers”.  This is funny as “community organizers” have been equated with commies/socialists since this whole movement against paying taxes started.

Quick update on why this is the death throes of the Republican party:  The only black or brown face I’ve seen has been on stage.  Not a single hispanic in sight (all those illegals must be working hard today, cooking these folks food, cutting these folks lawns and raising their children).   And BTW, if you think the rhetoric has been bad so far during Obama’s eight months in office, wait until Congress takes up the much needed immigration reform legislation which is coming next…

[1] WASHINGTON, Jan 8 (Reuters) – France, Japan and Australia rated best and the United States worst in new rankings focusing on preventable deaths due to treatable conditions in 19 leading industrialized nations, researchers said on Tuesday.

If the U.S. health care system performed as well as those of those top three countries, there would be 101,000 fewer deaths in the United States per year, according to researchers writing in the journal Health Affairs.

[2] However, in 2003, Wilson voted to provide federal funds for illegal immigrants’ healthcare. The vote came on the Medicare Prescription Drug, Improvement and Modernization Act of 2003, which contained Sec. 1011 authorizing $250,000 annually between 2003 and 2008 for government reimbursements to hospitals who provide treatment for uninsured illegal immigrants. The program has been extended through 2009 and there is currently a bipartisan bill in Congress to make it permanent.

McCain, desperate, hires Robots to Attack Obama for Terrorist Ties and Socialist Tendencies

John McCain is dropping honor by the wayside in this campaign.  The latest chapter involves a bunch of robots.  Lying, evil robots.

I think we need to take a closer lok at that army of robots he has hired to lie for him.  They are bothering people and calling Obama a Terrorist.

[yes, that’s the real audio.  Someone did a nice job of putting it to culture]

The automated calls in Maine, Nevada and other states — they are commonly known as “robo calls” — say Obama “has worked closely with domestic terrorist Bill Ayers, whose organization bombed the U.S. Capitol, the Pentagon, a judge’s home and killed Americans.”

The charge is misleading: The bombings, which took place more than 35 years ago, didn’t result in fatalities and the group didn’t claim responsibility for the attack on the judge’s home.

[full article]

So McCain has hired a bunch of robots to lie for him.  His campaign is totally on-board with these tactics, obviously.

The McCain campaign says the calls are warranted because Obama’s connection to Ayers — the two met many years after Ayers’ anti-Vietnam War activities had ended — raises questions about the Democrat’s judgment and record.

“This is an association that is highly questionable and not out of bounds,” McCain spokesman Rick Gorka said.

The tactics, using robots to spread lies, has been widely condemned by rational thinking people.

LAS VEGAS (AP) — Two senators in opposing political parties asked Republican presidential candidate John McCain to stop the automated phone calls that link Democratic candidate Barack Obama to a 1960s radical.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, a Nevada Democrat, and Sen. Susan Collins, a Maine Republican, made separate appeals to McCain on Friday. Collins faces a tough race for re-election and serves as a co-chairwoman of his Maine campaign.

“These kind of tactics have no place in Maine politics,” Collins spokesman Kevin Kelley said. “Sen. Collins urges the McCain campaign to stop these calls immediately.”

Not to be outdone personally, McCain is now openly accusing Obama of being the ultimate U.S. boogey-man buzzword…a “socialist”.

CONCORD, N.C. (AP) — Republican presidential candidate John McCain on Saturday accused Democratic rival Barack Obama of favoring a socialistic economic approach by supporting tax cuts and tax credits McCain says would merely shuffle wealth rather than creating it.

“At least in Europe, the Socialist leaders who so admire my opponent are upfront about their objectives,” McCain said in a radio address. “They use real numbers and honest language. And we should demand equal candor from Sen. Obama. Raising taxes on some in order to give checks to others is not a tax cut; it’s just another government giveaway.”

McCain, though, has a health care plan girded with a similar philosophy. He proposes providing individuals with a $5,000 tax credit to buy health insurance. He would pay for his plan, in part, by considering as taxable income the money their employer spends on their health coverage.

[full story]

Remember, it’s not “socialism” when Mccain does it.  It’s not “socialism” when he advocates the government directly buying mortgages.  It’s not “socialsim” when he holds up a workin’-class everyman as, well, everyone.  It can’t be, because, DUH!!!, McCain isn’t a socialist and Obama is.

McCain then continued with his UNABASHEDLY SOCIALIST RHETORIC.

[McCain] also was sharply critical of the Bush administration, saying it should be more aggressive in buying up the home mortgages of those trapped by high interest rates and falling housing values.

“The administration is not doing it. The secretary of the Treasury is not doing it,” McCain told the crowd. “We need to buy up these mortgages, give you a mortgage that you can afford, so you can pay your mortgage and realize the American Dream of owning your home.”

I don’t think McCain quite understands hows this works.  Just because the Government buys your mortgage, it doesn’t mean that you, yourself, own it.  The Government owns it.  You still have to pay for it.

McCain seems to be saying that the Government can solve everyone’s problems by buying everyone’s mortgage and then giving them back to the People.  That’s Socialist Rhetoric 101 people.

Now if that bit of hypocrisy isn’t enough for you, check this out.

Speaking to a boisterous crowd at Florida International University, McCain expressed dismay that the fame he brought on Joe Wurzelbacher has now turned the Ohio man into the focus of endless publicity, not all of it favorable.

For this, McCain blames his opponent, Barack Obama.

“The response from Senator Obama and his campaign yesterday was to attack Joe,” McCain said. “People are digging through his personal life and he has TV crews camped out in front of his house. He didn’t ask for Senator Obama to come to his house. He wasn’t recruited or prompted by our campaign. He just asked a question. And Americans ought to be able to ask Senator Obama tough questions without being smeared and targeted with political attacks.”

[full article]

This is the most complete and utter crap I’ve heard this election season, and that’s saying A LOT.  The guy tries to ambush Obama with a hypothetical question, conservatives go nuts over a soundbyte[*], “Joe” starts doing appearances on Fox and Rush, McCain himself brings up the guy 20 times during the debate….AND…’s Obama’s fault.

[*] BTW, in my long “Joe the Plumber” expose, I link to the entire, roughly 6-minute exchange between Sam and Obama.  Obama ends with this bit…

Obama said his tax plan, which he said focuses on bigger breaks for people making lower incomes, would be good for the economy. “If you’ve got a plumbing business, you’re going to be better off if you’ve got a whole bunch of customers who can afford to hire you,” he said. “Right now, everybody’s so pinched that business is bad for everybody. And I think when you spread the wealth around, it’s good for everybody.”

Sounds like a fairly benign comment, right?  Just pointing out that a rising tide lifts all ships, right?

No.  You see, you have to read this (and you can’t watch the whole thing, that’s too easy).  You need to read this through NutJob Republican eyes [i.e. like Rush, Hannity, and Fox].  When you do that, the exact same paragaph reads as…


And if you are “Joe the Plumber” you hear the above and you see a black guy in front of you, dancin’ like Sammy.

A Simple Guide to Biased Reporting (re: Lipstick bullshit and Bonney Kapp)

So we all know Fox is a joke, but it’s kinda funny when they themselves point it out..

But with so many news outlets – especially cable and Internet – influencing the news cycle, it seems as though personalities, gaffes, and yes, even made up controversies will continue to make their way to the forefront of political coverage.

[full story]

Yea…when you make ’em like that.

BTW, in addition to the boldfaced hypocrisy, this article by Bonney Kapp is total crap. 

Let me highlight the bias in the article.  All done with descriptive words and sneaky quotes.

Title: Obama Says “Enough” with “Phony” Controversy (sneaky use of quotes…is it a quote or a praphrase?  Who knows?)

Body : “Obama said apologetically…”

“Obama proclaimed his comment…”

“An exasperated Obama ticked off…”

“Obama has accused the McCain campaign…”

“Frustrated, Obama declared…”

And there you go.  That’s how you put bias in an article.  A textbook example really.  All that personal flavor.  On an article about nothing, featured on Google News as Fox’s finest.

UPDATE: I’ve made no secret of my love for the internet.  This is why.  Above you see a text version of the event.  Below, you see a video version of the event.

When comparing the two, it becomes blatantly obvious that trusting Bonney Kapp to bring you news about politics is retarded.   If I want bullshit, I’ll buy some cows.

And the Hypocrisy Grows…

…I dunno about you, but I’m noting dangerous levels of hypocrisy coming from a certain direction. No, not the Whitehouse. I’ve already detailed the stench emanating from that direction. This stuff is flowing down from the North, not the East.

Read more for the examples…

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Hypocrisy vs Irony via CNN

Sometimes it’s a tough call to judge whether someone is being Hypocritical or Ironic.

The same can often be said of situations.   What we have below is one such situation.  A simple confluence of world events that illustrates the absudity of….well….those same events and sometimes, the lack thereof (see #3).


The storyline goes as follows….

Continue reading