Archive of Articles in the "Health Care" Category

Republicans Want You To Pay More Tax!

[ Posted Tuesday, April 19th, 2022 – 15:51 UTC ]

Yesterday I wrote in support of what Senator Elizabeth Warren is calling on her fellow Democrats to do (essentially: pass whatever Joe Manchin and Kyrsten Sinema can agree to, and get Biden to issue a few impactful executive orders). Today I thought taking a look at what Democrats should be saying about their opponents would be a good follow-up, as the midterm campaign season heats up.

This could always change, of course, but right now the smart bet would be to paint the entire Republican Party with the brush that Senator Rick Scott -- the man in charge of the Senate caucus tasked with getting more Republicans elected -- has so helpfully provided. This effort has already begun, and it hopefully will grow a lot bigger over time. Because for once, the path forward for Democratic messaging is about as clear as it can be.

Read Complete Article »

Elizabeth Warren Is Right

[ Posted Monday, April 18th, 2022 – 15:45 UTC ]

Senator Elizabeth Warren published what amounts to a call to action for her fellow Democrats in today's New York Times, and it's really hard to disagree with anything she has written. Her main point is that if Democrats sit back and try to run on their record (since 2020), they are going to get badly beaten in the midterm elections. Without coming right out and saying it, Warren calls on Senate Democrats to pass whatever Senators Joe Manchin and Kyrsten Sinema can manage to agree to. And for President Joe Biden to start using his executive pen far more aggressively than he has, so far. There is no guarantee any of this will be successful, but if Democrats don't at least make the attempt, they're going to be toast in the midterms. This is Warren's main point, and like I said, it is hard to disagree with her.

Read Complete Article »

Friday Talking Points -- Democratic Early Primary Free-For-All

[ Posted Friday, April 15th, 2022 – 17:01 UTC ]

It wasn't the biggest or most important political news of the week, we admit, but the one story that definitely caught our attention was the earthquake which reverberated outward from the Democratic National Committee. This Wednesday, the D.N.C.'s Rules and Bylaws Committee voted to upset the early-primary applecart to allow for the possibility of a complete shakeup of the roster of early-voting states (currently: Iowa, New Hampshire, Nevada, South Carolina). For the 2024 presidential race, all the states have now been encouraged to apply for a spot on the early calendar -- with no guarantees for the four states that have previously enjoyed the privilege of going first.

Read Complete Article »

COVID Checkup

[ Posted Wednesday, April 13th, 2022 – 16:33 UTC ]

It's time for another COVID checkup. I say this for two reasons, one personal and one media-related. The personal is that I just got my second booster shot this past weekend. Which I would have done anyway, because I personally trust medical science and want to be as protected as possible against the pandemic; but in the past few days I might have been more motivated to do so, if all the information I got was from television news. Because, according to them, it's time for everyone to panic once again.

The news media has taken a lot of flak for their pandemic reporting, some of it justified and some not. This is a deadly disease which has swept through the American population in multiple waves and is close to having caused one million American deaths. That's as serious as it gets, obviously. The number of deaths is almost certainly a lot higher than that, but when the official number does push through the seven-digit threshold, it will doubtlessly be big news. It is natural to note when such a milestone number has been reached, but what is less natural is to treat all COVID news as bad -- or to exclusively report on the bad at the expense of any good news at all. Which sums up the viewpoint of television news for roughly the past year or so.

Read Complete Article »

Friday Talking Points -- History In The Making

[ Posted Friday, April 8th, 2022 – 16:36 UTC ]

History was made this week, as Ketanji Brown Jackson became the first Black woman ever confirmed to a seat on the Supreme Court. It's rare that such a milestone is reached, and it is unquestionably worth celebrating when it does finally happen. Especially since the first Black woman ever to become vice president was the one presiding over the Senate as it cast this historic vote.

Read Complete Article »

Obama Returns

[ Posted Wednesday, April 6th, 2022 – 15:43 UTC ]

President Barack Obama returned to the White House yesterday, for the first time in five years. He was there to support President Joe Biden in a signing ceremony, although it wasn't for a bill but merely for an executive order. This directive will provide a fix for some people who had fallen through the cracks of the Affordable Care Act, and will wind up helping many American families afford health insurance for their whole family. So it's easy to see why Obama was invited, to help usher in a technical fix for his greatest achievement as president.

But I have to say, while it was good to see Obama give a short speech and crack a few jokes with Biden, it did kind of draw attention to how much he's kept himself in the background ever since he left office. And if Biden and the rest of the Democrats are smart, they'd be all but begging Obama to take a much more active role in his party heading into the midterm election season.

Read Complete Article »

Friday Talking Points -- A Wrinkle In Time

[ Posted Friday, March 18th, 2022 – 17:19 UTC ]

Something rather astonishing happened on Capitol Hill this week. The Senate passed a bill by unanimous consent, acting with such blinding speed that some senators weren't even aware of what was happening. Contrast this to the Senate's usual modus operandi, which is for things to move so slowly that a glacier would be seen as zipping along by comparison. Arcane parliamentary procedures are routinely used to gum up the legislative works, which often leads to nothing at all happening -- after spending enormous amounts of time and energy in the attempt.

Read Complete Article »

Friday Talking Points -- A Long Two Years And A Long Two Weeks

[ Posted Friday, March 11th, 2022 – 18:23 UTC ]

Let's start with some good news this week, because we could all use some, right? Two years ago today Tom Hanks announced to the world he had contracted COVID-19, on the same day that the virus people were then largely calling "the novel coronavirus" was declared a pandemic by the World Health Organization. This was when it all hit home for many -- that this could quite possibly be a very big deal indeed, even though the president of the United States was desperately trying to get the American public to believe otherwise. Salon provides a good rundown of what we all went through next:

Read Complete Article »

A Protest About Nothing

[ Posted Thursday, March 10th, 2022 – 17:38 UTC ]

In politics, as in much of life, timing is key. Sometimes there are windows of opportunity that can be missed. Such seems to be the case with the so-called "People's Convoy," a group of American truckers who launched a copycat imitation of the Canadian truckers' protest, in the hopes of bringing media attention to their cause (or just themselves, perhaps). But their time -- if it ever even existed -- seems to have passed long before the big-rigs arrived near Washington D.C.

Read Complete Article »

Friday Talking Points -- Biden Speaks, The World Listens

[ Posted Friday, March 4th, 2022 – 17:43 UTC ]

This week, President Joe Biden gave his first State Of The Union speech to the United States Congress, to the American people, and to the rest of world. This speech had to be hastily rewritten at the last minute, obviously, due to intervening events. Russia's Vladimir Putin invaded Ukraine at the end of last week, which was obviously a lot more important than any political points or laundry lists of proposed legislation. So the speech got a quick makeover.

Read Complete Article »