Wednesday, October 15, 2008

ONCE


I'm not on the cutting edge - never have been never will be. Heck I'm middle age so I have no idea what is hip, popular or the latest. I do not own an ipod and my cell phone is in my glove compartment. All that being said I still have a voice and a heart and a soul and the most important a mind of my own. No one has to tell me I'll make up my own mind and I don't care if some disagree. The film ONCE is by far the best movie I have seen in a long time and the music a soulful revelation.

Well of course I loved it all. Being a struggling artist, trying to get the word out about my novel and playing guitar in a small coffee shop how could I not relate? I just love movies without guns and chase scenes and all the trifling hollywood prattle that is mass marketed to our lowest common denominator.

Marketa Irglova is a gem of a human being fortunately not from this country she won't get what is herself polished off for mass marketing. Make art for art's sake yes indeed. There is a huge population of people across the globe that haven't sold out. There is a huge amount of humanity out there with integrity, vision, wonderment, and in awe of our beautiful lives and our beautiful planet. It's bloody brilliant and those that do not see it, refuse to see it or have taken the cheap easy way out live lives debased of harmony, infatuation, ecstasy, real joy, and fulfillment.

ONCE is a movie that defines our bitter sweet reality and holds it up as even more satisfying than sweet alone. It takes all the pieces of the puzzle to make a life worth living. Intelligence, compassion, beauty are for the strong. The weak cheat, kill and lie and take the easiest quickest path to an unaware, unenlightened, unfulfilled life. I love smart, I love integrity, I love beauty and I love this planet and its people, animals and all of creation. I hate - hate. All of these thoughts and beauty and love and a heightened sense of awareness kindled by art, music and the written word, and the people behind the creativity it is a joy of unrelenting happiness, a source of unending beauty, an awakening of never ending awareness of life and all it should be as in and through the very act of creation and the witnessing of and breathing in deeply of that creation.

The movie was that good!

Here are the artist links, sound tracks and recommended listening. Loose yourself in it to find yourself where you have always been except when overly swayed by desire and fear too far from the center of being and the well spring of creation.

Paul
Author - Journey Home
Marketa Irglova Oscar Acceptance Speech

Glen Hansard
Glen Hansard The Frames
The Swell Season





Friday, October 10, 2008

Senator John McCain’s Record on Troop and Veterans’ Issues

This information is being passed onto you from VoteVets.org


Voting Against Veterans

· Veterans Groups Give McCain Failing Grades. In its most recent legislative ratings, the non-partisan Disabled American Veterans gave Sen. McCain a 20 percent rating for his voting record on veterans’ issues. Similarly, the non-partisan Iraq & Afghanistan Veterans of America gave McCain a "D" grade for his poor voting record on veterans’ issues, including McCain’s votes against additional body armor for troops in combat and additional funding for PTSD and TBI screening and treatment.

· McCain Voted Against Increased Funding for Veterans’ Health Care. Although McCain told voters at a campaign rally that improving veterans’ health care was his top domestic priority, he voted against increasing funding for veterans’ health care in 2004, 2005, 2006 and 2007. (Greenville News, 12/12/2007; S.Amdt. 2745 to S.C.R. 95, Vote 40, 3/10/04; Senate S.C.R. 18, Vote 55, 3/16/05; S.Amdt. 3007 to S.C.R. 83, Vote 41, 3/14/06; H.R. 1591, Vote 126, 3/29/07)

· McCain Voted At Least 28 Times Against Veterans’ Benefits, Including Healthcare. Since arriving in the U.S. Senate in 1987, McCain has voted at least 28 times against ensuring important benefits for America’s veterans, including providing adequate healthcare. (2006 Senate Vote #7, 41, 63, 67, 98, 222; 2005 Senate Votes #55, 89, 90, 251, 343; 2004 Senate Votes #40, 48, 145; 2003 Senate Votes #74, 81, 83; 1999 Senate Vote #328; 1998 Senate Vote #175; 1997 Senate Vote #168; 1996 Senate Votes #115, 275; 1995 Senate Votes #76, 226, 466; 1994 Senate Vote #306; 1992 Senate Vote #194; 1991 Senate Vote #259)

· McCain Voted Against Providing Automatic Cost-of-Living Adjustments to Veterans. McCain voted against providing automatic annual cost-of-living adjustments for certain veterans’ benefits. (S. 869, Vote 259, 11/20/91)

· McCain Voted to Underfund Department of Veterans Affairs. McCain voted for an appropriations bill that underfunded the Departments of Veterans Affairs and Housing and Urban Development by $8.9 billion. (H.R. 2099, Vote 470, 9/27/95)

· McCain Voted Against a $13 Billion Increase in Funding for Veterans Programs. McCain voted against an amendment to increase spending on veterans programs by $13 billion. (S.C.R. 57, Vote 115, 5/16/96)

· McCain Voted Against $44.3 Billion for Veterans Programs. McCain was one of five senators to vote against a bill providing $44.3 billion for the Department of Veterans Affairs, plus funding for other federal agencies. (H.R. 2684, Vote 328, 10/15/99)

· McCain Voted Against $47 Billion for the Department of Veterans Affairs. McCain was one of eight senators to vote against a bill that provided $47 billion for the Department of Veterans Affairs. (H.R. 4635, Vote 272, 10/12/00)

· McCain Voted Against $51 Billion in Veterans Funding. McCain was one of five senators to vote against the bill and seven to vote against the conference report that provided $51.1 billion for the Department of Veterans Affairs, as well as funding for the federal housing, environmental and emergency management agencies and NASA. (H.R. 2620, Vote 334, 11/8/01; Vote 269, 8/2/01)

· McCain Voted Against $122.7 Billion for Department of Veterans Affairs. McCain voted against an appropriations bill that included $122.7 billion in fiscal 2004 for the Department of Veterans Affairs, Housing and Urban Development and other related agencies. (H.R. 2861, Vote 449, 11/12/03)

· McCain Opposed $500 Million for Counseling Services for Veterans with Mental Disorders. McCain voted against an amendment to appropriate $500 million annually from 2006-2010 for counseling, mental health and rehabilitation services for veterans diagnosed with mental illness, posttraumatic stress disorder or substance abuse. (S. 2020, S.Amdt. 2634, Vote 343, 11/17/05)

· McCain opposed an Assured Funding Stream for Veterans’ Health Care. McCain opposed providing an assured funding stream for veterans’ health care, taking into account annual changes in veterans’ population and inflation. (S.Amdt. 3141 to S.C.R. 83, Vote 63, 3/16/06)

· McCain Voted Against Adding More Than $400 Million for Veterans’ Care. McCain was one of 13 Republicans to vote against providing an additional $430 million to the Department of Veterans Affairs for outpatient care and treatment for veterans. (S.Amdt. 3642 to H.R. 4939, Vote 98, 4/26/06)

· McCain Supported Outsourcing VA Jobs. McCain opposed an amendment that would have prevented the Department of Veterans Affairs from outsourcing jobs, many held by blue-collar veterans, without first giving the workers a chance to compete. (S.Amdt. 2673 to H.R. 2642, Vote 315, 9/6/07)

· McCain Opposed the 21st Century GI Bill Because It Was Too Generous. McCain did not vote on the GI Bill that will provide better educational opportunities to veterans of the Afghanistan and Iraq wars, paying full tuition at in-state schools and living expenses for those who have served at least three years since the 9/11 attacks. McCain said he opposes the bill because he thinks the generous benefits would "encourage more people to leave the military." (S.Amdt. 4803 to H.R. 2642, Vote 137, 5/22/08; Chattanooga Times Free Press, 6/2/08; Boston Globe, 5/23/08; ABCNews.com, 5/26/08)

· Disabled American Veterans Legislative Director Said That McCain’s Proposal Would Increase Costs For Veterans Because His Plan Relies On Private Hospitals Which Are More Expensive and Which Could Also Lead To Further Rationing Of Care. "To help veterans who live far from VA hospitals or need specialized care the VA can’t provide, McCain proposed giving low-income veterans and those who incurred injury during their service a card they could use at private hospitals. The proposal is not an attempt to privatize the VA, as critics have alleged, but rather, an effort to improve care and access to it, he said. Joe Violanti, legislative director of the Disabled American Veterans, a nonpartisan organization, said the proposal would increase costs because private hospitals are more expensive. The increased cost could lead to further rationing of care, he said." (Las Vegas Sun, 8/10/08)

Lack of Support for the Troops

· McCain co-sponsored the Use of Force Authorization. McCain supported the bill that gave President George W. Bush the green light--and a blank check--for going to war with Iraq. (SJ Res 46, 10/3/02)

· McCain Opposed Increasing Spending on TRICARE and Giving Greater Access to National Guard and Reservists. Although his campaign website devotes a large section to veterans issues, including expanding benefits for reservists and members of the National Guard, McCain voted against increasing spending on the TRICARE program by $20.3 billion over 10 years to give members of the National Guard and Reserves and their families greater access to the health care program. The increase would be offset by a reduction in tax cuts for the wealthy. (S.Amdt. 324 to S.C.R. 23, Vote 81, 3/25/03)

· McCain voted against holding Bush accountable for his actions in the war. McCain opposed the creation of an independent commission to investigate the development and use of intelligence leading up to the war in Iraq. (S.Amdt. 1275 to H.R. 2658, Vote 284, 7/16/03)

· McCain voted Against Establishing a $1 Billion Trust Fund for Military Health Facilities. McCain voted against establishing a $1 billion trust fund to improve military health facilities by refusing to repeal tax cuts for those making more than $1 million a year. (S.Amdt. 2735 to S.Amdt. 2707 to H.R. 4297, Vote 7, 2/2/06)

· Senator McCain opposed efforts to end the overextension of the military--a policy that is having a devastating impact on our troops. McCain voted against requiring mandatory minimum downtime between tours of duty for troops serving in Iraq. (S.Amdt.. 2909 to S.Amdt. 2011 to HR 1585, Vote 341, 9/19/07; S.Amdt. 2012 to S.Amdt. 2011 to HR 1585, Vote 241, 7/11/07)

· McCain announced his willingness to keep U.S. troops in Iraq for decades--a statement sure to inflame Iraqis and endanger American troops. McCain: "Make it a hundred" years in Iraq and "that would be fine with me." (Derry, New Hampshire Town Hall meeting, 1/3/08)

· McCain voted against a ban on waterboarding--a form of torture--in a move that could eventually endanger American troops. According to ThinkProgress, "the Senate brought the Intelligence Authorization Bill to the floor, which contained a provision from Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) establishing one interrogation standard across the government. The bill requires the intelligence community to abide by the same standards as articulated in the Army Field Manual and bans waterboarding." McCain voted against the bill. (H.R. 2082, Vote 22, 2/13/08)

· McCain Also Supported Outsourcing at Walter Reed. McCain opposed an amendment to prevent the outsourcing of 350 federal employee jobs at Walter Reed Army Medical Center--outsourcing that contributed to the scandalous treatment of veterans at Walter Reed that McCain called a "disgrace." (S.Amdt. 4895 to H.R. 5631, Vote 234, 9/6/06; Speech to VFW in Kansas City, Mo., 4/4/08)

· Senator McCain has consistently opposed any plan to withdraw troops from Iraq--a policy that has directly weakened American efforts in Afghanistan. Senator McCain repeatedly voted against a timetable for withdrawing troops from Iraq. (S.Amdt. 3876 to S.Amdt. 3874 to H.R. 2764, Vote #438, 12/18/07; S.Amdt. 3875 to S.Amdt. 3874 to H.R. 2764, Vote #437, 12/18/07; S.Amdt.3164 to H.R. 3222, Vote #362, 10/3/07; S.Amdt. 2898 to S. Amdt. 2011 to H.R. 1585, Vote #346, 9/21/07; S. Amdt. 2924 to S.Amdt. 2011 to H.R.1585, Vote #345, 9/21/07; S.Amdt.2 087 to S.Amdt. 2011 to H.R. 1585, Vote #252, 7/18/07; S.Amdt. 643 to H.R. 1591, Vote #116, 3/27/07; S.Amdt. 4320 to S. 2766, Vote #182, 6/22/06; S.Amdt. 4442 to S. 2766, Vote #181, 6/22/06; S.Amdt. 2519 to S.1042, Vote #322, 11/15/05)

· McCain said it’s "not too important" when U.S. troops leave Iraq. This exchange occurred on NBC’s Today Show with Matt Lauer:

LAUER: If it's working, senator, do you now have a better estimate of when American forces can come home from Iraq?
McCAIN: No, but that's not too important.

(NBC, Today Show, 6/11/08)

Cheerleading for War with Iraq--While Afghanistan was Unfinished

· McCain suggested that the war in Iraq could be won with a "smaller" force. "But the fact is I think we could go in with much smaller numbers than we had to do in the past. But I don't believe it's going to be nearly the size and scope that it was in 1991." (CBS News, Face the Nation, 9/15/02)

· McCain said winning the war would be "easy." "I know that as successful as I believe we will be, and I believe that the success will be fairly easy, we will still lose some American young men or women." (CNN, 9/24/02)

· McCain also said the actual fighting in Iraq would be easy. "We’re not going to get into house-to-house fighting in Baghdad. We may have to take out buildings, but we’re not going to have a bloodletting of trading American bodies for Iraqi bodies." (CNN, 9/29/02)

· Continuing his pattern, McCain also said on MSNBC that we would win the war in Iraq "easily." "But the point is that, one, we will win this conflict. We will win it easily." (MSNBC, 1/22/03)

· McCain argued Saddam was "a threat of the first order." Senator McCain said that a policy of containing Iraq to blunt its weapons of mass destruction program is "unsustainable, ineffective, unworkable and dangerous." McCain: "I believe Iraq is a threat of the first order, and only a change of regime will make Iraq a state that does not threaten us and others, and where liberated people assume the rights and responsibilities of freedom." (Speech to the Center for Strategic & International Studies, 2/13/03)

· McCain echoed Bush and Cheney’s rationale for going to war. McCain: "We're going to win this victory. Tragically, we will lose American lives. But it will be brief. We’re going to find massive evidence of weapons of mass destruction . . . It’s going to send the message throughout the Middle East that democracy can take hold in the Middle East." (Fox News, Hannity & Colmes, 2/21/03)

· "But I believe, Katie, that the Iraqi people will greet us as liberators." (NBC, 3/20/03)

· March 2003: "I believe that this conflict is still going to be relatively short." (NBC, Meet the Press, 3/30/03)

· McCain echoed Bush and Cheney’s talking points that the U.S. would only be in Iraq for a short time. McCain: "It’s clear that the end is very much in sight . . . It won’t be long . . . it’ll be a fairly short period of time." (ABC, 4/9/03)

Staunch Defense of the Iraq Invasion

· McCain maintained that the war was a good idea and that George W. Bush deserved "admiration." At the 2004 Republican National Convention, McCain, focusing on the war in Iraq, said that while weapons of mass destruction were not found, Saddam once had them and "he would have acquired them again." McCain said the mission in Iraq "gave hope to people long oppressed" and it was "necessary, achievable and noble." McCain: "For his determination to undertake it, and for his unflagging resolve to see it through to a just end, President Bush deserves not only our support, but our admiration." (Speech, Republican National Convention, 8/31/04)

· Senator McCain: "The war, the invasion was not a mistake. (Meet the Press, 1/6/08)

· McCain said the war in Iraq was "worth" it. Asked if the war was a good idea worth the price in blood and treasure, McCain: "It was worth getting rid of Saddam Hussein. He had used weapons of mass destruction, and it's clear that he was hell-bent on acquiring them." (Republican Debate, 1/24/08)

Dangerous Lack of Foreign Policy Knowledge

· When questioned about Osama bin Laden after the 1998 U.S. missile strikes in Afghanistan, McCain surmised that the terrorist leader wasn’t as "bad" as "depicted." "You could say, Look, is this guy, Laden, really the bad guy that's depicted? Most of us have never heard of him before." (Interview with Mother Jones magazine, 11/1998)

· McCain was unaware of previous Sunni-Shia violence before the Iraq War. "There’s not a history of clashes that are violent between Sunnis and Shias. So I think they can probably get along." (MSNBC, Hardball, 4/23/03)

· McCain said our military could just "muddle through" in Afghanistan. While giving a speech, McCain was asked about Afghanistan and replied, "I am concerned about it, but I’m not as concerned as I am about Iraq today, obviously, or I’d be talking about Afghanistan. But I believe that if Karzai can make the progress that he is making, that in the long term, we may muddle through in Afghanistan." (Speech to the Council on Foreign Relations, 11/5/03)

· McCain stated that Sunni al Qaeda was "supported" by the Shia Iranians. (2/2008)

· McCain again confused Sunni Muslim al Qaeda operatives with Shi’a Muslim insurgents. The Washington Post reported of McCain: "He said several times that Iran, a predominately Shiite country, was supplying the mostly Sunni militant group, al-Qaeda. In fact, officials have said they believe Iran is helping Shiite extremists in Iraq.

"Speaking to reporters in Amman, the Jordanian capital, McCain said he and two Senate colleagues traveling with him continue to be concerned about Iranian operatives ‘taking al-Qaeda into Iran, training them and sending them back.’

"Pressed to elaborate, McCain said it was ‘common knowledge and has been reported in the media that al-Qaeda is going back into Iran and receiving training and are coming back into Iraq from Iran, that's well known. And it's unfortunate.’" (Press conference, Amman, Jordan, 3/18/2008)

· Yet again, McCain demonstrated that he didn’t know whether al Qaeda was a Sunni or Shiite organization. While questioning General David Petraeus during a Senate hearing, the following exchange occurred:

MCCAIN: Do you still view al Qaeda in Iraq as a major threat?
PETRAEUS: It is still a major threat, though it is certainly not as major a threat as it was say 15 months ago.
MCCAIN: Certainly not an obscure sect of the Shi'ites overall?
PETREAUS: No.
MCCAIN: Or Sunnis or anybody else.

(Senate Armed Services Committee Hearing, 4/8/08)

· McCain incorrectly thought General David Petraeus was in charge of Afghanistan. The Army Times reported: "Speaking Monday at the annual meeting of the Associated Press, McCain was asked whether he, if elected, would shift combat troops from Iraq to Afghanistan to intensify the search for al-Qaida leader Osama bin Laden.

‘I would not do that unless Gen. (David) Petraeus said that he felt that the situation called for that,’ McCain said, referring to the top U.S. commander in Iraq.

"Petraeus, however, made clear last week that he has nothing to do with the decision. Testifying last week before four congressional committees, including the Senate Armed Services Committee on which McCain is the ranking Republican, Petraeus said the decision about whether troops could be shifted from Iraq to Afghanistan was not his responsibility because his portfolio is limited to the multi-national force in Iraq." (Annual meeting of the Associated Press, 4/14/08)

· McCain credited the "surge" for the "Anbar Awakening"--even though the Anbar Awakening preceded the surge by nearly a year. (7/22/08)

· John McCain has also recently demonstrated either serious knowledge gaps in terms of foreign policy, or mounting confusion, when discussing an array of other countries:



Spain: McCain refused to commit to meeting with the president of Spain, a NATO ally, after becoming confused about America’s relationship with Spain, its leader, and, possibly, exactly where Spain is located. (
9/17/08)


Czech Republic and Slovakia: McCain referred to the two countries using the name "Czechoslovakia" several times--despite the fact that Czechoslakia split apart and hasn't existed since 1993. (
7/15/08; (7/14/08))


Venezuela: McCain said that Venezuela was a Middle Eastern country. (
9/30/08)



Resource Wars - Oil, Bush, McCain & Palin

Just keep your eye on the ball people - these are resource wars we are fighting and our troops are protecting oil lines and the particular heads of state that keep the oil flowing to the west. The terrorist want us off their land, they have issues with their governments who we are protecting. Until we stop using oil as an energy source we will have resource wars, global warming and oil dictating how we spend our tax dollars.

Oil is a war magnet and it's only going to get worse. Bush has spent us into a financial melt down dumping all of our money into Iraq to control the oil. If those monthly billions would have been used to grow future clean energy technologies instead of holding onto the past we wouldn't be in this mess now and have more economic players on our economic monopoly board.

Solar Thermal is ready to go and we need the political will to build it and get it on line. We sent men to the Moon we can certainly dial down and eliminate our use of oil. The fact remains though that those who are reaping unbelievable profits from oil are in control of our country. Knowing that, realizing that Bush = Texas = Oil = McCain (surrounded by Bush operatives) = Palin (Alaska - the state is totally subsidized by oil money)- connecting the Oil dots - NOW - decide who gets your vote.

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Barack Obama & John McCain Debate Two




Some thoughts from last night:

Obama is far more Presidential. He is head and shoulders more dignified and Presidential than even Ronald Regan. His conduct, his grasp of the issues, are his ideas. This man is a born leader and he is intelligent. A quality desperately needed at the top. He is able to communicate his ideas effectively because they are his ideas and a product of his own research and contemplation. McCain and Palin are puppets spouting talking points force fed to them by handlers who's only goal is to remain in power and continue reaping the personal benefits of that power.

What in Sarah Palin's personality lets her imply Barack is a terrorist? That's not leadership, that's not Presidential, that's just a character flaw. A lack of integrity, a lack of honesty, disingenuous and not deserving of our trust.

These people (McCain, Palin and their handlers) just want to win and will say anything to win. John McCain has been flip flopping and flailing around like a fish on a dock. In years past the republican party loyalist would be calling him out for that if he was a democrat. I actually feel sorry for McCain who so blatantly has sold out. That picture of him hugging Bush makes me sick after the working over Bush and Rove did to him in South Carolina.

I hope the true Conservatives kick these neo-con fascist and freedom hating zealots out of their party and balance the budget already. It's the democrats who are fiscally more responsible. That alone should cause an uproar in the Grand Oil Party. Viewer alert. The Sundance Channel has been featuring "Crude Awakening". If you haven't viewed this documentary watch it now they nailed it completely.

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Energy Truth

The facts:

• "clean coal" is a myth;
• nuclear power is the most expensive and dangerous way to boil water ever;
• offshore drilling won't lower gas prices more than a few cents in a decade.

http://prezoilmoney.oilchangeusa.org/


David Jacobs-Strain




















Let's not forget music and the unseen, the infinite commingling with the finite, lets not forget in our mired down world of lies, corruption, hatred, disregard, and intolerance, let's not forget music. While I have been practically retching all over myself in response to the bare faced lies coming from Mr. McCain and Mrs. Palin and the return of gutter politics, while I have howled at the absurd behavior of an electorate that thinks the President of the United States is a beauty pagent, popularity contest, while I have wondered allowed do we even deserve this planet as we blast wolves and bears from helicopters with high powered rifles, and coax the poor and frustrated to blow themselves up along with other innocent people in our quest for greed, power and control, while I marvel at the sheer unenlightened behavior of self destruction and fraud in the throes of these tumultuous times I am still reminded of the beauty of it all.

Whether it's a crisp, clear, fall morning or the beauty of a heartfelt musicians song the world reminds me constantly and in a moment forever in a day that there is something larger going on than man's ego, hunger, and drive for power and control. All the more reason to revere this EARTH and protect, nurture, guard, preserve it with the utmost of our very being, intention, action and breath, and strive (with failure as not an option) to live in a pure and sustainable fashion. It is the only path that will fulfill us with all the other achievements of fame, money and power as vapid and empty.

One such musician reminding me of the call of something larger than ourselves like an Osprey on the wind is David Jacobs-Strain. I've been listening to his album Ocean or a Teardrop all morning. This young man is beyond great. If you like world music, the blues, smart lyrics, Leo Kotkee-esque, John Hammond type ripping fret work and a soulful voice taking you places outside yourself then give this talent a listen. You just might forget about all the hypocrisy, lies and worthless noise spilling from the mouths of those who are vapid and empty and only in it for themselves - "you betchya"

Ocean Or A Teardrop

Financial Melt Down Answers, Background and Thoughts

I found the following links from a financial adviser I used to use when I for a brief moment had some money to invest, and was trying to build up my savings. I in no way am supporting this institution or recommending anyone do business with anyone, but I often found his input useful. Click on the links below they might provide some clarity to you with what is going on.

The financial advisers name is Ric Edelman:

Read this first on WHY this happened: http://www.ricedelman.com/cs/education/article?articleId=762&titleParam=Update%20Regarding%20the%20Financial%20Markets

Then read this explanation about what the “bailout” is: http://www.ricedelman.com/cs/education/article?articleId=807&titleParam=The%20$700%20Billion%20Bailout%20Plan%20Is%20Neither!

If you have followed these rules, you’ll be okay: http://www.ricedelman.com/cs/radio_show/rics_special_alert_092908

____________________

Stay informed, Get involved, and let them hear YOU!

Health-Care Platforms of Presidential Candidates


10/2/2008 12:00:00 AM

THURSDAY, Oct. 2 (HealthDay News) -- Both presidential candidates want to make health insurance available to more Americans, but each has proposed a vastly different route to reform, a new report shows. Health-care reform is high on the national agenda, with 116 million adults either uninsured, underinsured, experiencing a problem with medical bills, or denying themselves needed care due to cost considerations. "As we face a crisis in the financial system, we must remember we are also facing a crisis in the health system," Karen Davis, president of The Commonwealth Fund, said during a Wednesday teleconference announcing the results of a new report entitled, The Presidential Candidates' Health Reform Proposals: Choices for America.

The Commonwealth Fund is a private, independent foundation that supports research into health-care issues. "Rising health-care costs and the decreasing quality of health-care coverage are contributing to the economic insecurity of American families," Davis continued.

Currently, some 82 percent of Americans think the health-care system either has to be rebuilt completely or needs to undergo a massive overhaul. "As we examine the health-care proposals of the presidential candidates, we need to pay particular attention to whether these plans will ensure affordable coverage to all Americans," Davis said.

Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) would use tax credits to encourage consumers to buy coverage in the individual insurance market, including removing barriers to purchasing insurance in other states. This might eventually lead to erosions in consumer protections, said Sara Collins, an assistant vice president for The Commonwealth Fund's Program on the Future of Health Insurance.

Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.), on the other hand, would require all employers except those running small businesses to either provide coverage or contribute to the cost. His plan would also expand eligibility for Medicaid/SCHIP (State Children's Health Insurance Program).

Obama has stated that universal coverage is an eventual goal. McCain has not made this statement, instead preferring to focus on expanded access to insurance.

McCain's plan would reduce the number of uninsured Americans by 1.3 million over the coming decade at a total cost of $1.3 billion. Obama's plan would reduce the ranks of the uninsured by 34 million at a cost of $1.63 billion. During the first year of implementation, McCain's proposed plan would dent the federal budget to the tune of $185 billion, while Obama's plan would require $86 billion.

The report concluded that "Senator Obama's plan shows greater potential for making care more affordable, accessible, efficient and higher quality, though it will likely fall short of covering everyone."

McCain's plan is likely to increase insurance administration costs, the report stated, and would not likely lead to universal coverage.

"In 2009, we need a president and Congress who will work together and take action needed to transform the health system," Davis said. "We must realize that investing in the health-care system will pay dividends in terms of a healthy workforce and economic stability.

__________________________
Thanks Donna for passing this along!

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

John McCain For President
















John McCain's involvement with the Keating Five, surrounding himself with Bush people, and Bush veterans, hiring lobbyist, and adding a divisive Vice Presidential candidate to his ticket sounds like business as usual to me. A vote for John McCain keeps those already in power - in power. If you want change to come to Washington D.C. the last person you should vote for is John McCain.

"Far from being a group of outsiders to the Republican Party power structure, it [the McCain campaign] is now run largely by skilled operatives who learned their crafts in successive Bush campaigns and various jobs across the Bush government over the past eight years...." Anne E. Kornblut and Juliet Eilperin

McCain's Lobbyist Team