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Friday Talking Points [88] -- Healthcare Reform Contest (Place Your Bets!)

[ Posted Friday, July 31st, 2009 – 15:59 PDT ]

I thought about titling today's column "Sausage Making, Interrupted" in (dis-)honor of the House of Representatives scarpering off on a five-week vacation without finishing their work on healthcare reform (the Senate, it should be noted, is reportedly planning on doing exactly the same thing next week, to their equal shame). Then I thought I'd riff on the old doctor joke: "The operation was a success... the patient died on the table, though." But when I sat down to write, I decided I was sick of the entire process. Meaning there was only one sane and healthy thing to do.

Hold a contest!

We haven't run a really good contest in a while, so I thought we'd open up the betting on what the outcome of the healthcare reform push will likely be, rather than write yet another column of seething frustration at the lack of progress from our belovéd Congresscritters.

But since contests are such fun, we're going to stick it at the end, where the talking points normally can be found. To be healthy FTP column consumers, we've got to eat our vegetables before we get to dessert, as it were. Ahem.

So, very quickly, I'd like to make one quick point here and then get the awards out of the way so we can all move on to the important business of placing our bets.

A few days ago, in North Carolina, President Obama gave a town hall meeting/pep rally on healthcare reform. Here are part of his full remarks [emphasis has been added by me]:

First of all, nobody is talking about some government takeover of health care. I'm tired of hearing that. I have been as clear as I can be. Under the reform I've proposed, if you like your doctor, you keep your doctor. If you like your health care plan, you keep your health care plan. These folks need to stop scaring everybody. Nobody is talking about you forcing -- to have to change your plans.

But if you're one of the 46 [million] Americans who don't have coverage today, or you've got that coverage where you got a $10,000 deductible, so it's basically house insurance, it's not health insurance -- you pay the premiums so you won't lose your house if you get hit by a bus, heaven forbid -- then you'll finally be able to get quality, affordable coverage.

But what a lot of chatter out there hasn't focused on is the fact that if you've got health insurance, then the reform we're proposing will also help you because it will provide you more stability and more security. Because the truth is we have a system today that works well for the insurance industry, but it doesn't always work well for you. So what we need, and what we will have when we pass these reforms, are health insurance consumer protections to make sure that those who have insurance are treated fairly and insurance companies are held accountable.

Let me be specific. We will stop insurance companies from denying you coverage because of your medical history. I've told this story before -- I will never forget watching my own mother, as she fought cancer in her final days, worrying about whether her insurer would claim her illness was a preexisting condition so they could wiggle out of paying for her coverage. How many of you have worried about the same thing? A lot of people have gone through this. Many of you have been denied insurance or heard of someone who was denied insurance because they got -- had a preexisting condition. That will no longer be allowed with reform. We won't allow that. We won't allow that.

With reform, insurance companies will have to abide by a yearly cap on how much you can be charged for your out-of-pocket expenses. No one in America should go broke because of an illness.

We will require insurance companies to cover routine checkups and preventive care, like mammograms and colonoscopies -- eye and foot exams for diabetics, so we can avoid chronic illnesses that cost not only lives, but money.

No longer will insurance companies be allowed to drop or water down coverage for someone who's become seriously ill. That's not right, it's not fair. We will stop insurance companies from placing arbitrary caps on the coverage you can receive in a given year or in a lifetime.

So my point is, whether or not you have health insurance right now, the reforms we seek will bring stability and security that you don't have today -- reforms that will become more urgent and more urgent with each passing year.

OK, I pasted a lot of that in here, because it's worth it, and I want to broadly comment on it in a bit. But first, let's look at that bold paragraph.

I vaguely remember then-candidate Obama telling this story on the campaign trail last year. You know what is pathetic about that last sentence? Everything, really, but in particular: "vaguely remember." Because I have personally been so close to the healthcare reform legislative debate for -- oh, I don't know, months and months now -- that I'm not only seeing the forest as well as the trees, but also the bark on those trees, and even the tiny tiny bugs living on the bark, as well. And, until I caught it (it certainly wasn't featured in the soundbites the mainstream media ran from Obama's appearance in North Carolina) a few days ago, I had completely forgotten about this story.

This is pathetic. Maybe this is why I've been so frustrated that I've been writing about beer and marijuana all week, I don't know. Ahem. Where was I? Oh, right -- pathetic!

You want to know why? Because this is exactly the main argument that both Barack Obama and all other Democrats fighting for reform should have been shouting from the rooftops since Day One of the healthcare reform debate. Why, why, why oh why can't Democrats ever do this "emotion thing" right (or, more accurately, "with any sort of sense of timing")?

In fact, I am getting so supremely annoyed at this lack, that I must break for a Bokononist interlude:

Tiger got to hunt
Bird got to fly
Man got to sit and wonder, "Why, why, why?"

OK, that's a little better. A little Vonnegut always puts things in perspective for me. I apologize for the interruption.

Now, don't get me wrong. I am not knocking Obama's speech in North Carolina. In fact, I think it would be an absolutely brilliant move for Obama to forego his monthly primetime press conference next month, and instead just grab an hour of network television time and repeat this speech word for word to the American public. It's a really good speech, and gets Obama back to the plain-spoken-ness he so regularly and effortlessly achieved as a candidate out on the hustings. It puts our entire situation in such easy-to-understand language that it would do him wonders -- both in the polls and in the fight for his agenda right now. Especially on healthcare, as shown by the section I excerpted.

Because, for both Barack Obama and almost all the Democrats in Congress fighting hard against the corporate-sponsored "do-nothing-ism" of the Blue Dogs, what has largely been missing in the debate is the human element. I have already said this over and over in many ways, but here's this week's version:

Why wasn't the poignant and heart-wrenching story of Obama's mother the starting point in this debate? Why didn't Obama share his personal and very human feelings of watching his mom go through this? Why didn't he explain why he is absolutely and morally committed to reforming healthcare because this episode in his life deeply moved him to do so?

This is called "telling a story." It is what politicians (and journalists, for that matter) are supposed to do. The better you do this -- in either profession -- the more effective your message is. And, depressingly, at times it seems like you have to undergo an operation to absolutely remove this ability in order to join the Democratic Party, or something.

Where is the emotion in this entire healthcare debate? Where is the emotion!?! Look at some of the other phrases Obama has (just recently, sad to say) finally started to use:

"No one in America should go broke because of illness."

"That's not right and it's not fair."

You know what? If Democrats, led by President Obama himself, had started with this sort of thing, instead of pulling it out in desperation late in the game, we might now be arguing about whether losing the guarantee of single-payer was a deal-breaker for the Progressives, with Republicans and Blue Dogs desperately pushing for the much-less-radical "public plan" as being much more friendly to the status quo and the business community at large.

Just picture that for a moment, if you will. That is where we could be in this debate.

So, instead of talking points this week, I want every Democrat who is worthy of the label to please read Obama's recent speech, and in each and every media appearance during their monstrously- and obscenely-long summer vacation, to remember, for the sake of actually achieving healthcare reform:

Tell a story.

A human story.

There are tens of millions of personal stories which speak for themselves as to why healthcare reform is the right thing to do.

USE THEM!

 

Most Impressive Democrat of the Week

The Most Impressive Democrat Of The Week this week is awarded, in general, to the people buying up ad time to make the case for healthcare reform during the August congressional break. In specific, we'll give the actual award to MoveOn, which just leaked the script of the ad they plan to run against any Democrat voting against healthcare reform today in the House committee, but this is just one part of a much larger campaign.

Because politicians, no matter what color their dog is, are susceptible to this sort of thing -- pointing out to their constituents what they've been up to in Congress. And this time around (unlike the "Harry and Louise" days of 1994), the playing field is going to be a lot more level. Back then, the airwaves were flooded with ads from one side only -- the side that wanted to kill reform. This time, the pro-reform side is also going to unleash an ad blitz as well, meaning that people will see two sides of the story.

This is to be commended. No matter what happens in the healthcare reform debate, at least this time around there are groups collecting money and cutting ads for reform, to counter the anti-reform deep pockets. And these groups so far have shown a lot of political savvy in targeting specific members of Congress in order to hold them accountable for their actions, rather than just unleashing a scattershot ad approach.

So MoveOn, and all the other groups putting their money where their beliefs are to try and get healthcare reform passed, are the winners of this week's Most Impressive Democrat Of The Week award. Keep up the good work, folks! Keep their feet to the fire!

 

Most Disappointing Democrat of the Week

This week's Most Disappointing Democrat Of The Week goes out to Senator Max Baucus, and all his Blue Dog buddies in both the Senate and the House. The Blue Dogs, led by Baucus, are ostensibly chasing a "bipartisan" pipe dream because (they say) it's the best way to achieve healthcare reform.

This is patent nonsense. The Republicans, with the possible exception of the ladies from Maine, are not interested in achieving anything. Quite the opposite, in fact. Their party has been following a crass political calculus: Healthcare failure equals Obama failure. This is their true goal, and everything else is just window dressing. Unfortunately, Baucus is mesmerized by this window dressing, and can't see through the clear pane of glass in front of his face to the naked obstructionism which cavorts beyond it.

Baucus and the rest of them have been paid a lot of money by the healthcare industry to block any meaningful legislation. But they know that to do so outright would cause a revolt from the Democratic Party base, and cause nothing but scorn from independent voters. So they're trying to run out the clock instead. If they just appear to be working hard towards the goal, they think they can say next year on the campaign trail "well, gosh, we really tried hard," and still get re-elected.

They need to be reminded of what happened to the Democratic majorities in Congress in 1994. Democrats were thrown out in record numbers because they couldn't get anything done. So why do Baucus and his ilk think being the prime instrument of not getting anything done is a good idea now? I have no clue. Neither, apparently, do they.

Oh, wait, here's a clue!

"Give up on the false idol of bipartisanship -- Republicans are never going to vote for anything you produce."

Maybe I should send it on to them. Or maybe we all should.

For being fellow travelers with the Party Of No, and for continuing to be the biggest roadblock towards getting something done, Senator Max Baucus and all the other Democrats mumbling the mantra of "delay, delay, delay" or "can't we just have a little more time?" have more than earned this week's Most Disappointing Democrat Of The Week.

If you can't lead, then at least get out of the way for those who are trying to.

[Contact Senator Max Baucus on his Senate contact page to let him know what you think of his actions.]

 

Friday Talking Points

Volume 88 (7/31/09)

Since we're topsy-turvy this week, with the talking points summarized into one heartfelt rant at the beginning, we have as a result freed up our final section for the contest. This is the part where we all throw down our fake, pretend cash and predict what the outcome of the healthcare reform efforts in Congress will be. I've provided seven scenarios, with odds, for your contemplation, but you can always feel free to call your own bet in the comments. The more outlandish the better, that's our motto!

Rules are the standard thing. For newcomers, what this means is that the only currency this column accepts for bets is quatloos. Even if you pick from the menu of choices presented below, you still have to call the date -- either when healthcare reform is actually signed by President Obama, or (in the case of failure), the last date progress was made by either house (since failure may come by the "run out the clock tactic," which would be hard to pin to a single date). So you not only have to call the outcome, but when it'll happen. Incomplete bets, as always, are free to be mocked for not following the instructions by the other bettors in the field. Ahem. And by the moderator, just because. Any ties will be decided by the Friday Talking Points staff, including (of course) the cat.

Prizes will be as awarded in whichever categories strike our fancy when awarding them, and will consist solely of (we asked our lawyers about this, don't worry): massive public bragging rights, since your login name will be congratulated quite publicly in a future FTP column -- which comes complete with the full approval of this column to use this resulting fame to try and pick up (depending on your individual preference) either hot chicks or hot dudes from the nearest meat market of your choice. Oh... and your quatloos, of course -- that goes without saying. But that's it... sorry folks, but we're not exactly the lottery here.

Anyway, here are the house's odds on our most popular seven outcomes of the healthcare battle in Congress. Examine them well, or take your own guess in the comments below.

Ya pays yer money, and ya takes yer chance! Step right up, one and all, and put your quatloos where your mouth is! Place your bets, ladeeeez and gents!

 

1
   Round One -- House passes, Senate rejects

First, some terminology. I went into this process in detail yesterday, but it can be easily summed up as: Round One -- each house passes a bill on its own; Round Two -- both houses pass the same bill; Round Three -- President Obama signs the bill. Got that? OK, here we go with the first of our options.

The two competing bills which emerge from the three House committees are wrestled into one bill, probably over the August break. When Congress resumes, the House passes the resulting bill. Zero Republicans vote for it. A few Democrats defect, but enough hang on to get the bill through.

Over in the Senate, however, the entire process collapses. Now, there are a few ways this could happen. Baucus' committee may just never get anything voted on. Or they could produce a bill, but then everything grinds to a halt in the resulting conference committee (to reconcile their bill with the bill Teddy Kennedy's committee already passed). Or they could even agree on a single bill, only to see it go down in defeat in a vote in the full Senate. If it even gets that far -- perhaps a filibuster succeeds and they won't even get a chance to vote on it.

But whatever the reason, the House passes a bill with lots of media fanfare, but the Senate remains hopelessly deadlocked and healthcare reform dies for the year. Since this option could mean running out the clock, you must pick the date when the House passes their bill. Closest to the actual date wins.

Odds: Frighteningly high. Let's say, even (one-to-one).

 

2
   Round One -- Senate passes, House rejects

This is the same as the previous one, except reversed. The Senate gets its act together, melds its two bills into one, and it reaches the floor and passes. The House, however, remains deadlocked.

Again, you should really call how far the bill makes it in the House if selecting this option -- multiple bills out of committee, conference committee approves, floor vote, or whatever. The date you have to name is when the Senate passes its bill.

Odds: bet one quatloo, win five more if you're right. The odds that this will happen are rather long, because it's much easier to get things through the House.

 

3
   Round One -- Senate passes, House passes, bill dies in conference committee

This is a real possibility that many people have not even faced yet. The House hammers out a bill, and passes it through a floor vote. Yay! The Senate struggles mightily but at the end of the day actually passes something. Double-Yay! A conference committee between the two houses is announced, but bickers so violently that no bill is ever agreed upon. Boo! Healthcare reform quietly dies for 2009.

Now, in this one, you should really call whether the Senate passes its bill through a regular vote (which is susceptible to a filibuster) or through "reconciliation" where the filibuster is not allowed. This parliamentary weapon has been readied for use this year, but Harry Reid has said he's not even going to consider using it unless the Senate gets to mid-October without managing to pass anything. So if you choose reconciliation, adjust your date accordingly. Since this could be another one of those "run out the clock" choices, pick the later date of the Senate vote or the House vote (no matter what the actual order, pick the date when the second house passes it).

Odds: Terrifyingly possible. Bet two quatloos, only win one more if you're right.

 

4
   Round Two -- House passes, Senate rejects

The House passes a bill, the Senate passes a bill, and the conference committee agrees on a single bill. This bill is then passed by the House, but fails in the Senate.

Again, you should call whether it fails due to a filibuster or under reconciliation rules. The date you should name is when the House passes the combined bill.

Odds: Bet three, win two more if you call it right.

 

5
   Round Two -- Senate passes, House rejects

Again, the reverse of the previous choice. The conference committee bill is passed by the Senate, but dies in the House (likely because it has been watered down so much it is no longer acceptable to the Progressives). This would be heart-breaking -- to get so close, but to fail in the end because the legislation has been subjected to too many compromises to be worth doing -- but is a very real possibility.

Pick the date when the Senate passes the combined bill.

Odds: Bet one, get three more in return if you win.

 

6
   Round Three -- Obama vetoes

OK, this one's a longshot, I have to admit. But it is a possibility, so I have to at least mention it.

The House and Senate pass individual bills. The conference committee gets a single bill out. The House and Senate both then approve the bill, and send it to Obama's desk. But because some poison pill amendment has been added along the way, Obama reluctantly has to veto it.

Pick the date Obama actually vetoes the bill.

Odds: Extremely long. Bet one, get twenty-five more if you win.

 

7
   Round Three -- Success! Obama signs!

This one is self-explanatory. Pick the date of the signing ceremony.

Odds: At this point, who really knows? Call your own odds for this one...

OK, those are the main options. Of course, there are all kinds of other ways it could happen (or not -- such as an invasion of Martians which cause Congress to adjourn early and head for undisclosed locations, just to toss one possibility out there). So peer into your crystal ball, pick a date, and slap your quatloos down in the comments!

 

[Program Note: Friday Talking Points will be taking a week off next Friday. But don't despair, because in place of our usual weekly FTP rantings will be a special column for your enjoyment and edification. Because next Friday will be President Obama's 199th day in office, and I think it's silly how the media practically has an orgasmic experience over the first 100 days, but then just stops counting after that milestone. So we'll be reviewing Obama's second 100 days in office next Friday. FTP will resume normal programming on August 14. We thank you for your understanding.]

 

Cross-posted at: Democratic Underground

Cross-posted at: The Huffington Post

 

-- Chris Weigant

 

21 Comments on “Friday Talking Points [88] -- Healthcare Reform Contest (Place Your Bets!)”

  1. [1] 
    Osborne Ink wrote:

    I'll take option 7 for a million quatloos. Signing date September 25, 2009.

  2. [2] 
    nutcase wrote:

    Cross posted on HuffPo

    Chris,

    While you are reminding us to eat our veggies before dessert, the health industry is following the ancient dictum to always pillage BEFORE burning.

    I take the position that whatever might pass cannot be construed as health reform. If something does pass, it will be a tinkering with insurance plans. No insurance company has ever cured a single malady.

    Whatever passes will be in lieu of seizing the moment to pass real reform. It will suck all of the energy out of any effort in the foreseeable future to address the issue again.

    Might I suggest either giving the MDDOTW trophy to Max and retiring it or admitting that he doesn't meet the primary qualification of being a Democrat.

    Those supporting single-payer can sign a petition at: http://www.healthcare-now.org/petition/

    Don't you find it interesting that al-PhARMA, the AHA and the AHIP have stood by Obama's side announcing their support for reform while making unprecedented efforts to defeat every significant aspect of reform via the Blue Dogs?

  3. [3] 
    Michale wrote:

    CASH FOR CLUNKERS an early test run for ObamaCare??

    I'll address your FTPs point by point later.. It's a real hectic weekend... :D

    Michale....

  4. [4] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    Michale -

    So, um, you're saying that an Obama scheme is so wildly successful that it ran out of money, but then the Dems in Congress added more to keep it going? As I understand it, C4C had two goals -- get old cars off the road, and get people to buy more cars. Seems like it's working...

    But they'll take my 65 Rambler when they pry my cold, dead hands off it, I have to say, personally...

    Heh heh.

    -CW

  5. [5] 
    Chris Weigant wrote:

    I have to say, I'm a bit disappointed that there aren't any Bokononists joining in on the converstion.

    Sigh.

    Busy, busy, busy, I guess...

    :-)

    -CW

  6. [6] 
    Michale wrote:

    CW,

    So, um, you're saying that an Obama scheme is so wildly successful that it ran out of money, but then the Dems in Congress added more to keep it going? As I understand it, C4C had two goals — get old cars off the road, and get people to buy more cars. Seems like it's working…

    It remains to be seen whether or not Congress will add more money.

    But my point is, this SHOULD have been anticipated and SHOULD have been planned for.. This midnight scramble for more cash is simply another check in the BAD MOVE column of the Obama Administration. And, sad as it is for me to say (I DID vote for the guy) the checks in the BAD MOVE column are far outpacing the checks in the GOOD MOVE column. I am still shocked that the Press is giving Obama a pass on the Honduras situation.

    Actually, no I am not shocked.. However I AM shocked that I am not shocked. But that doesn't shock me.

    "Oh no, I've gone cross-eyed"
    -Austin Powers

    But they'll take my 65 Rambler when they pry my cold, dead hands off it, I have to say, personally…

    hehehehehe

    But this IS interesting. If you have read any of my Human Caused Global Warming (Yet The Planet Is Cooling) rants, you will know that I suggested something like this a LONG time ago.

    Towhit, take all the billions and billions of dollars (79 billion at last count) that has been spent on the crock 'o crap that is Human Caused Global Warming (Yet The Planet Is Cooling) and create Hybrid Trade In Programs. Drive in with a running gas vehicle and drive out with a nice economical Hybrid. That would get MILLIONS of gas powered pollution causing vehicles off the road and would actually DO something for the planet instead of just making the likes of Al Gore and Richard Branson rich..

    The C4C program is a good start, but it doesn't go nearly far enough.

    Michale.....

  7. [7] 
    Michale wrote:

    But getting back to ObamaCare...

    Would anyone eat in a restaurant where the cook refused to eat the food he prepared for others??

    Of course they wouldn't..

    So, why are are ya'all pushing for a HealthCare plan that Congress itself won't even subscribe to??

    Do as I say, not as I do. I don't know any other way to explain the sheer arrogance of Henry Waxman.

    The House Energy and Commerce Committee chairman says Congress does not have to join the government health care.

    You, maybe. But not them.

    So he's fine foisting this health care monstrosity on us, just not Congress. Waxman says members of Congress do not have to join the public option government health plan.

    http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,535945,00.html

    Cavuto makes a valid point.

    Michale.....

  8. [8] 
    BashiBazouk wrote:

    But this IS interesting. If you have read any of my Human Caused Global Warming (Yet The Planet Is Cooling) rants, you will know that I suggested something like this a LONG time ago.

    Towhit, take all the billions and billions of dollars (79 billion at last count) that has been spent on the crock 'o crap that is Human Caused Global Warming (Yet The Planet Is Cooling) and create Hybrid Trade In Programs.

    Really?

  9. [9] 
    Michale wrote:

    Yes, "Really"..

    http://www.google.com/search?client=firefox-a&rls=org.mozilla%3Aen-US%3Aofficial&channel=s&hl=en&q=Global+Cooling&btnG=Google+Search

    The data you put forth has already been proven to be "cooked" data, both literally and figuratively...

    What kind of MORON puts a temp sensor in the middle of an asphalt jungle??

    Further, if you do more research, you will see that record LOW temps, even in the middle of summer are the norm these days.. Areas of New York and Mass are saying that they aren't really having a summer.

    All this points to one inescapable conclusion...

    Climate changes.

    OH MY FRACKING GODS!!! THE CLIMATE IS CHANGING!!!! QUICK!!! LET'S PUT OUT SOME LEGISLATION TO PREVENT THE CLIMATE FROM CHANGING!!!"

    And after THAT, the hysterical Left can support legislation to stop the Earth from rotating and also create the committee that oversees the T.E.C. Ron Silver is probably available to head the committee...

    Climate is ALWAYS changing.. Climate has changed LONG before humankind was a little bitty amoeba swimming in the primordial sludge and Climate will continue to change long after humankind has gone the way of the dodo (Some SHOULD make it there sooner then others, if there is any justice in the world)...

    The simple fact is, nothing mankind can do, can destroy the planet...

    It's the epitome of arrogance for humans to think they have that kind of power.. And, trust me.. I know arrogance when I see it...

    So, don't worry.. Be happy... :D

    Michale.....

  10. [10] 
    Michale wrote:

    But, since you bring it up, Bashi... Let me ask you.

    Can you point to ANY action that the likes of Al Gore and Richard Branson has taken that would indicate that there IS a dire climatic emergency??

    ANY action whatsoever??

    Let's see..

    The TALK alot.. The fly around in private airplanes and drive around in private limos. Branson is even building his own SPACESHIP to take a handful of tourists up into low orbit, while spewing millions of tons of pollutants into the atmosphere..

    Al Gore lives in his 20 room mansion and has his very own tin mine.

    So, tell me.. Why should I live like Al Gore and Richard Branson want me to live when even Al Gore and Richard Branson don't live like Al Gore and Richard Branson want people to live??

    If you take all the BILLIONS of dollars that have been spent on simply TALKING about Human Caused Global Warming (Yet The Planet Is Cooling) and put that into PRACTICAL, USEFUL and WORKING solar projects, you could put a REAL DENT in the so called "imminent" catastrophe..

    Of course, THAT wouldn't make Al Gore and Richard Branson richer, so that's not even an option..

    Do you know that the Carbon Trading market is expected to be a 1O BILLION dollar a year bonanza for those who have sounded the alarm..

    Now, maybe it's just me.. Maybe I am being silly..

    But here we have Al Gore whining and crying and yelling and screaming about an alleged imminent catastrophe and he stands to make BILLIONS OF DOLLARS A YEAR, if people believe him and follow him..

    Now, where I come from, that is called a, stay with me here.... "CONFLICT OF INTEREST"...

    And I am simply gabberflasted that there are really ostensibly intelligent people out there who actually BUY INTO Al Gore's con and COMPLETELY IGNORE the ***FACT*** that Al Gore stands to make BILLIONS from his disciples...

    Don't you find this the LEAST bit odd???

    Michale.....

  11. [11] 
    BashiBazouk wrote:

    Wow. That is one hell of an under whelming google search. So, you want me to believe the National Review and climate theories from the 70's over NASA data that I am supposed to disregard because you say so. Ah, No.

    Can you point to ANY action that the likes of Al Gore and Richard Branson has taken that would indicate that there IS a dire climatic emergency??

    Is there some reason I should give a flip about these two? I realize the climate change deniers have made them their poster child to hate, but to follow the science of climate change, these are not who I go to.

    I prefer major science organizations like NASA, NOAA, Scripps, NAS, The Royal Academy to name a few. You know the ones with unfettered access to satellites and super computers. There is pretty much a scientific consensus on global warming. You want to convince me that consensus is wrong, you are going to have to come up with something real. Every link on the matter that I have seen you post is to some political site with a vested interest in the outcome or some paid hack from a rinky dinky backwater university with a minor science program.

    Lets see some peer reviewed articles from major scientific organizations or universities that appeared in hard science publications.

  12. [12] 
    Michale wrote:

    Wow. That is one hell of an under whelming google search. So, you want me to believe the National Review and climate theories from the 70's over NASA data that I am supposed to disregard because you say so. Ah, No.

    So, you deny that the planet has been cooling since 1998 and that 1998 was the hottest year on record and that Global Average Temps peaked in 1998.

    Are you denying all this??

    Is there some reason I should give a flip about these two? I realize the climate change deniers have made them their poster child to hate, but to follow the science of climate change, these are not who I go to

    Since they are the two major proponents of the Human Caused Global Warming(Yet The Planet Is Cooling) religion, yes... I would think you would give a flip about them. Not to mention the fact that they stand to make BILLIONS by keeping people like you scared.. I would think that fact alone would piss you off...

    But here is why you should "give a flip" about those two.

    Since the science is indisputably in dispute, the ONLY form of evidence that has any bearing are the actions of the proponents.

    So the ONLY relevant question is this.

    Do the proponents of the Human Caused Global Warming (Yet The Planet Is Cooling) actually live their lives as if there is an imminent ecological catastrophe??

    Of course they don't.

    Do you???

    You want to convince me that consensus is wrong, you are going to have to come up with something real.

    A, there is NO consensus.. 2, even if there WERE a consensus it wouldn't mean squat. There was a "consensus" that the earth was flat...

    Consensus is a POLITICAL term and process. It is NOT science in any way, shape or form..

    As far as something real??

    They will be in the next post, when CW get's his lazy arse outta bed!! :D

    Michale.....

  13. [13] 
    Michale wrote:

    How about the Global Average Temps Of The Lower Atmosphere??

    http://c3headlines.typepad.com/.a/6a010536b58035970c0115711b1c79970c-pi

    You want to quote NASA??

    How many times has NASA had to REVISE their data because they got caught fudging things and displaying outright incompetence??

    News Item: : NASA Revises Temperature Data - 1930's warmest on record!
    http://www.globalwarminghoax.com/print.php?news.24

    Forget NASA for the moment.

    Think back on ALL the claims made by your "peer reviewed" so-called scientists that turned out to be nothing but garbage...

    Greenland Glaciers melting... Polar bears eating their own... Snows of Killamanjaroo melting... And on and on and on.. Grandiose claims of "proof" of Human Caused Global Warming (Yet The Planet Is Cooling) that turned out to be, at best, utter and complete crap and, at worse, outright lies..

    Greenland and the arctic region are presently no warmer than they were in the late 1930’s, and are presently cooling!
    http://www.worldclimatereport.com/index.php/2006/11/17/cooling-the-debate-a-longer-record-of-greenland-air-temperature/

    And on and on and on...

    For every peer reviewed document that you can show me that "proves" there is Human Caused Global Warming, I can come up with a corresponding document that "proves" just the opposite...

    So, what does one do when the science is in dispute?

    One looks at the actions of the leaders of the issue at hand..

    In his book ASSAULT ON REASON, Al Gore castigated the American Public for the lack of debate in the run up to the Iraq war.

    Yet Gore pushes his Human Caused Global Warming(Yet The Planet Is Cooling) con with unrestrained speed and haste.. How is this not hypocritical??

    Can you show me ONE scientist, activist or proponent of the Human Caused Global Warming(Yet The Planet Is Cooling) religion that has significantly altered their lifestyle based on the alleged "imminent" ecological cataclysm?? Just ONE... Just ONE person..

    No, you cannot... Everyone gives LIP Service to the Human Caused Global Warming(Yet The Planet Is Cooling) religion but, like religious fanatics, when it comes to actually putting ecological practices to work, it's a DO AS I SAY NOT AS I DO attitude..

    Don't get me wrong.. There are many things in today's world that is worthy of fear. There are LEGITIMATE fears out there....

    The idea that humankind can actually destroy the planet is simply borne of ego and arrogance and is NOT one of those legitimate fears.

    Humankind is a man sitting in a dingy in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean who flops his wee-wee over the edge and pisses in the ocean. Yea, it's probably not the best thing for the immediate area.. But the idea that, by doing so, he can raise the temperatures and the level of the entire oceans of the entire world is ludicrous to the point and far surpasses said point of absurdity...

    Michale.....

  14. [14] 
    BashiBazouk wrote:

    So, you deny that the planet has been cooling since 1998 and that 1998 was the hottest year on record and that Global Average Temps peaked in 1998.

    Are you denying all this??

    Read the graphs. 1998 was a particularly hot year. Very little in science is linear. 1998 was a steep upswing. These last two have been deep down swings. Both do not contradict the basic pattern of the increase of global mean temperature.

    Disagree, show me the science.

    Since the science is indisputably in dispute, the ONLY form of evidence that has any bearing are the actions of the proponents.

    I seen you post some silly stuff over the years but this takes the cake. The only evidence of any bearing is Hard Science. Period. Put up or shut up.

    The dispute on this issue among hard scientists about 97% for 3% against last I read. And most of the disputes has to do with timing and severity, not overall effect. Your stand is possible, but as I said before: show me the science.

    Do the proponents of the Human Caused Global Warming (Yet The Planet Is Cooling) actually live their lives as if there is an imminent ecological catastrophe??

    Of course they don't.

    Pretty sweeping generalization for a huge swath of the world...Al Gore being a possible hypocrite is not exactly an argument based in science.

    Do you???

    Yes.

    Consensus is a POLITICAL term and process. It is NOT science in any way, shape or form..

    Bullpuckies.

  15. [15] 
    nypoet22 wrote:

    i'll put my thousand quatloos down on number 7, for all the good they'll do.

    congress will complete and pass a bill on health care. the president will sign it, most likely the day before the winter recess, with lots of smiles and handshakes.

    however, by this time the bill will be so watered-down with loopholes and built-up with pork that it will actually accomplish the opposite of its intended goal. the public option will be gutted of useful provisions, funneling even more money than before into drug companies and insurance companies, with the taxpayers footing the bill to the tune of trillions.

    "Daniel-san, must talk. Walk on road, hmm? Walk left side — safe. Walk right side — safe. Walk middle — sooner or later, get squish just like grape."

  16. [16] 
    Michale wrote:

    I seen you post some silly stuff over the years but this takes the cake. The only evidence of any bearing is Hard Science. Period. Put up or shut up.

    So, what you are saying is that there is no credible science and there are no credible scientists who dispute the Human Caused Global Warming (Yet The Planet Is Cooling) religion.

    Is THAT what you are saying..

    I just want to make sure I am understanding what you are saying before I let ya have it. :D

    Al Gore being a possible hypocrite

    POSSIBLE??? Talk about your equivocation!! :D One only has to read Gore's words and compare them to his actions, to know for a FACT that he is, indeed, a hypocrite. And that's probably the BEST of his qualities. He is also a liar, a cheat, and a con-man.

    is not exactly an argument based in science.

    My arguments are based in FACT. Do you have any facts of your own, beyond the cooked data??

    The science is in dispute. This is completely indisputable. Therefore, to make a COMPLETELY logical and rational conclusion, completely free of any emotion, one must look at other factors..

    The fact that no proponent of the Human Caused Global Warming (Yet The Planet Is Cooling)religion has significantly altered their lifestyle to any degree that would indicate that they actually BELIEVE there is an imminent ecological catastrophe, is one such factor.

    The fact that proponents of the Human Caused Global Warming (Yet The Planet Is Cooling)religion have refused time and time again to debate the merits of their religion in a purely scientific and fact-finding venue is another factor.

    Debates of lesser scale have peppered recent history and, in EVERY one, the religion lost. This is another factor.

    The fact that dire "scientific" evidence that proved the Human Caused Global Warming (Yet The Planet Is Cooling)religion had later been refuted by REAL science as hoaxes, lies and propaganda is still another factor.

    When one considers all these factors (as one must, since the science is in dispute) the ONLY logical and rational conclusion that can be reached is that the theory/religion of Human Caused Global Warming (Yet The Planet Is Cooling) is not valid.

    Simple logic, rationally arrived at.

    Now one can, of course, simply pooh pooh the science away that doesn't support the Human Caused Global Warming (Yet The Planet Is Cooling) religion. But then that would weaken the overall SCIENCE IS KING argument, now wouldn't it?

    You say that you know people who have significantly altered their lifestyle as if there
    an imminent ecological catastrophe.

    Who??? One name. Just one verifiable name.

    Bullpuckies

    From YOUR OWN link..

    Scientific consensus is not by itself a scientific argument, and it is not part of the scientific method.

    I rest my case...

    Consensus is NOT a scientific argument.

    Consensus is NOT part of the scientific method.

    Consensus is NOT science. Period.

    Consensus is politics, pure and simple. Even though it is an aspect of the scientific community, as your link indicates, it's a POLITICAL aspect. Arrived at more by politics than by anything scientific.

    nypoet22,

    however, by this time the bill will be so watered-down with loopholes and built-up with pork that it will actually accomplish the opposite of its intended goal. the public option will be gutted of useful provisions, funneling even more money than before into drug companies and insurance companies, with the taxpayers footing the bill to the tune of trillions.

    ding, ding, ding!!! We Have A Winner!! Tell 'im what they've won, Johnny!!!!

    "Daniel-san, must talk. Walk on road, hmm? Walk left side — safe. Walk right side — safe. Walk middle — sooner or later, get squish just like grape."

    Anyone that can quote apropos movie/TV passages is all right in my book!!! :D

    Michale.....

  17. [17] 
    Michale wrote:

    Grrrrr. My attributes are all messed up..

    Hope you can follow it...

    Michale.....

  18. [18] 
    BashiBazouk wrote:

    Bla, Bla, Bla...

    Not exactly bowling me over with your links so far.

    Show me the science.

    Not one link to a major scientific organization or university or a paper that has appeared in hard science publication. Just a bunch of random blog pages.

    If it's that "in dispute" I would think you could find at least one.

    Guess not.

  19. [19] 
    Michale wrote:

    OK, so you ARE claiming that there is no science that disputes the Human Caused Global Warming (Yet The Planet Is Cooling)religion.

    OK.. Links to follow..

    Michale...

  20. [20] 
    Michale wrote:

    With regards to your "consensus" fallacy.

    Is there a scientific consensus on the topic of man made global warming? If you read the news in the major media you would have cause to believe that there is.

    The truth is very different. Most of the media articles you will see refer to reports issued by the IPCC. The IPCC is the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate change, a political body appointed by the UN. Many of the 3,000 members of this panel are not scientists, but simply political appointees. The few real scientists on the panel have disputed the panel's findings but have been silenced by having their comments deleted from the reports.

    http://www.digitaljournal.com/article/162241/17_200_Scientists_Dispute_Global_Warming

    A 150,000-year climatic record from Antarctic ice
    http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v316/n6029/abs/316591a0.html

    PALEOCLIMATE:
    A Variable Sun Paces Millennial Climate

    Abstract: “Paleoceanographers report that the climate of the northern North Atlantic has warmed and cooled nine times in the past 12,000 years in step with the waxing and waning of the sun. Some researchers say the data make solar variability the leading hypothesis to explain the roughly 1500-year oscillation of climate seen since the last ice age, and that the sun could also add to the greenhouse warming of the next few centuries”
    http://www.sciencemag.org/cgi/content/summary/294/5546/1431b


    On global forces of nature driving the Earth’s climate. Are humans involved?

    “The authors identify and describe the following global forces of nature driving the Earth’s climate: (1) solar radiation as a dominant external energy supplier to the Earth, (2) outgassing as a major supplier of gases to the World Ocean and the atmosphere, and, possibly, (3) microbial activities generating and consuming atmospheric gases at the interface of lithosphere and atmosphere. The writers provide quantitative estimates of the scope and extent of their corresponding effects on the Earth’s climate. Quantitative comparison of the scope and extent of the forces of nature and anthropogenic influences on the Earth’s climate is especially important at the time of broad-scale public debates on current global warming. The writers show that the human-induced climatic changes are negligible.”
    http://www.springerlink.com/content/t341350850360302/

    Falsification Of The Atmospheric CO2 Greenhouse Effects Within The Frame Of Physics
    The atmospheric greenhouse effect, an idea that authors trace back to the traditional works of Fourier 1824, Tyndall 1861, and Arrhenius 1896, and which is still supported in global climatology, essentially describes a fictitious mechanism, in which a planetary atmosphere acts as a heat pump driven by an environment that is radiatively interacting with but radiatively equilibrated to the atmospheric system. According to the second law of thermodynamics such a planetary machine can never exist. Nevertheless, in almost all texts of global climatology and in a widespread secondary literature it is taken for granted that such mechanism is real and stands on a firm scientific foundation. In this paper the popular conjecture is analyzed and the underlying physical principles are clarified. By showing that (a) there are no common physical laws between the warming phenomenon in glass houses and the fictitious atmospheric greenhouse effects, (b) there are no calculations to determine an average surface temperature of a planet, (c) the frequently mentioned difference of 33 degrees Celsius is a meaningless number calculated wrongly, (d) the formulas of cavity radiation are used inappropriately, (e) the assumption of a radiative balance is unphysical, (f) thermal conductivity and friction must not be set to zero, the atmospheric greenhouse conjecture is falsified.
    http://xxx.lanl.gov/abs/0707.1161

    That should be enough to get you started. I won't even bother going into the scientific refutation of the outrageous claims by the Gore'acle disciples regarding Polar Bears, Greenland's Glaciers, Snows Of Killamanjaroo and robins (the bird, not Batman's sidekick) "returning" to northern Canada.

    If you need more reading material, simply GOOGLE
    "Peer Reviewed" Science disputes "Global Warming".

    Once you get past all the partisan propaganda (that is present on BOTH sides of the issue) you will see clearly that the science is in dispute.

    And, since I have established beyond any logical or rational doubt that the science IS in dispute, the other previously mentioned factors MUST be considered.

    Is getting a handle on pollution a worthwhile goal?? Abso-fracking-loutly.

    Is getting rid of this country's dependency on foreign oil important. You betcha..

    Is the Earth's climate changing? Abso-tively...

    Can humankind do anything to stop the climate from changing? Posi-loutly not.

    Are we all going to be killed by the huge cataclysmic ecological catastrophe that is GoreBull Warming?? Laughable.

    Can humankind actually destroy planet Earth? Sheeya, right.. SUUURE we can... Of course not.

    Will humankind cease to exist millions of years from now? Possibly.

    Can we do anything about that possibility right now? Yes, massive space travel and colonization programs.

    Should we worry about being killed by GoreBull Warming? Knock yerself out... I won't.

    Michale....

  21. [21] 
    Michale wrote:

    As far as the contest goes, Option #8 is going to happen. Neither the House nor the Senate will be able to pass anything resembling HealthCare reform. It's doubtful that even ObamaCare (which is NOTHING at all like HealthCare reform) will make the grade.

    But it will be delayed and hem'ed and haw'ed on until an international crisis takes the public glare away from ObamaCare.

    What are my odds, CW?? :D

    Michale

    crossposted to HuffingtonPost

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