Congressional Benefits at Taxpayers Expense

Health Insurance

With the current angst among Americans in general and political pundits about the healthcare plans, compensation, and job benefits to members of Congress, it is appropriate to get facts. That’s what we do here:

As of January 1, 2014, all Members of Congress, including representatives of the U.S. Territories, and their designated staff must purchase “health plans offered by an appropriate SHOP as determined by the Director [of OPM]…” in order to receive an employer contribution toward the
coverage. Office of Personnel Management has indicated that Members and staff must use the District of Columbia’s SHOP exchange, known as DC Health Link (the “DC SHOP”). Section 1312(d)(3)(D) of the ACA defines Members of Congress as “ any member of the House of Representatives or the Senate” and congressional staff as “all full-time and part-time employees employed by the official office of a Member of Congress, whether in Washington D.C. or outside of Washington D.C.”
 Contrary to popular belief, Congressional members do not receive free health care. As it does for other federal employees who purchase their insurance through the Federal Employee Health Benefits Plan (FEHBP), the federal government provides a subsidy equivalent to 72 percent of the weighted average of all FEHBP premiums. Therefore, Members of Congress (MOC) and staff pay approximately 28 percent of their annual healthcare premiums through pre-tax payroll deductions.
MOC and their staff are also eligible to set salary aside in Flex 125 savings plans, which help the employee pay for healthcare and childcare expenses with pre-tax dollars. If they enroll in high-deductible health plans they can also enroll in health savings accounts. If Members of Congress or staff purchase dental and vision or long-term care insurance, they pay 100 percent of their premiums through pre-tax dollars. Again, these benefits are similar to those offered by many large employers. However, there are two areas where Members of Congress (not staff or family members) can receive free or low-cost health care that the average citizen cannot access. The first is having access to the Office of the Attending Physician. For an annual fee (unspecified), MOC can receive limited care for routine examinations, consultations, and certain diagnostic tests.

The second option is also only available to current MOC. In the Capital region only, they may receive free medical outpatient care at military facilities. If they are outside of the Capital region or if they need inpatient care, then MOC must pay 100 percent of the full cost of that military health care.

Finally, upon separation from political life, MOC may purchase FEHBP insurance if they are otherwise eligible for retirement and if they have had five years of continuous healthcare coverage under their DC SHOP plans. If the Affordable Care Act is repealed, members of Congress have a fallback plan. They would be able to return to the FEHBP. Twenty million other Americans won’t.

There is recent information uncovered that puts into question the actual “DC SHOP” program MOC have insurance through. In setting that program up, the Office of Personnel Management entered on the official application form for MOC insurance under Obamacare that the applicant was a group of 50 or less when in fact it includes 535 members of Congress and their staff members. Technically the MOC is NOT eligible for that plan. For that reason they all should be enrolled in private Obamacare plans through the Exchanges.

Compensation

Lawmakers’ $174,000 annual salary is more than three times the average American’s median income ($49,909), and the retirement and health benefits are generous — members are fully vested after only five years of service and eligible for pension at age 50. Since Congress writes and approves the tax code, it’s not surprising that they wrote in a few bonuses for themselves. Members of Congress are able to deduct $3,000 from their annual income tax for any expenses incurred outside of their home state or district. Additionally, all the of the perks given to the members of Congress– including free parking at the office and D.C. airports, child daycare, free meals at the legislative dining hall, and cheap membership to the house gym — are tax free. And the perks don’t stop when they retire: In addition to free health benefits and a generous pension, former members of Congress can send mail for free, courtesy of the U.S. taxpayer. Additionally, campaign funds can be spent on meals and entertainment for constituents, as well as travel, anytime of the year, whether in session or not.

Travel

How about a business investigation trip to Brazil? Not a problem if you are a member of Congress, so long as it’s “business” related. Just join a committee and chances are you will need to carry out one of these strictly-business-trips overseas at least once.Last year, the Congressional Research Council found that it is nearly impossible for the public to find out which Congressional members make trips and where they go. What’s more, current laws don’t impose any spending limits  on these government trips. The U.S. Treasury simply refills the travel funds on an “as-needed” basis. Additionally, Congress members get to travel between D.C. and their home district for free as often as they like.

Paid Time Off (PTO)

When all that trip-taking wears them down, members of Congress can always fall back on their vacation time. Out of 260 working days in a year, Congress only works 137  of them. In the first 42 weeks of last year, Congress members worked an average of 2.67 days per week. Amazingly, that’s actually a better attendance rate than usual — the last two years, our legislative branch only worked 111 days.

Pay Raises

Can you imagine a workplace where the employees could choose to give themselves a raise, regardless of the financial shape of the place they work for, the current economic climate or even their own job performance? That’s how it works for members of Congress. They don’t have to prove to a boss that they deserve a higher salary; they only need to convince one another that it is a good idea. Then they all vote on it. Since the “Congressional cost-of-living adjustment (COLA)” rule was enacted in 1990, Congress has accepted an annual raise 13 times. Every year, the rule automatically increases congressional salaries in accordance to price indexes. In fact, the only time representatives don’t get a raise is if they vote against it, which they did for 2010 and 2011.

Congressional Office Support Staff

Members of the House receive a $900,000 annual allowance for a staff as well as a $250,000 budget for travel and office expenses, paid for entirely by taxpayers. Each senator, on the other hand, gets a budget close to $3.3 million based on figures from the Congressional Research Service. Again, certain companies do offer lavish pay packages and perks to employees so it may be a bit hypocritical to pick on Congress for this one point. However, I’m not aware of any business out there where all employees equally get at least $1.2 million in expenses at their disposal.

Death Benefits

This one frosts me pretty good: Should a member of Congress be killed while in office, the surviving family of that member would be entitled to receive at least one year’s worth of salary, or a minimum of $174,000. In contrast, family members of soldiers in the United States armed forces who perish while defending our country domestically or overseas are entitled to $100,000 in military death benefits, as well as funeral and burial expenses.

Summary

There is no question those who serve in Congress make personal sacrifices representing the people in their districts. But that representation and exactly what comprises it has changed dramatically over the years. You can bet the framers of the Constitution had no thoughts of legislators crafting for themselves the pay plans, benefits, expense packages, and huge office staffs that exist today. Then being a member of Congress WAS an act of giving to the nation and a community. Now it has become a job — and a pretty good job at that.

The obvious irony of the present system is there is no direct correlation in Congress between production on the job, evaluation of that job, and accountability for all things about that job, and the possibility of losing that job or being penalized by a boss or accountability manager for not conducting that job in the manner prescribed for that legislator. Yes, Americans are technically the bosses of members of Congress. But when did you have your last employee review with your Congressional or Senate representative? For House members the only review available is in the voting booth every two years, for Senators every six years. And, by the way, there are no daily assignment or production charts made available to Americans to actually judge the performance of the legislators. The Media should be there to report factually on job accomplishments and failures and on-the-job-deficiencies, but they report very little without their skewed analysis and partisan perspectives. The bottom line? Americans have no clue about the job performance of individual legislators. That gives Congressional members pretty good job security, doesn’t it!

It is time for Americans to demand that every member of Congress enter into a job atmosphere that parallels those of the Americans they represent: similar job responsibilities that are monitored, graded, and reported to the “bosses.” Compensation, health benefits, retirement, expense allowances, travel, PTO, vacations, Office expense, and any other benefits MUST parallel those of Americans who do NOT have the privilege of a Congressional title.

Unless and until members of Congress are held accountable to specific and exact responsibilities in every area of their jobs and their performance on those jobs, nothing in Congress will change. We will continue to wonder every day “What the heck are they doing on Capitol Hill? My income is stagnant, cost of living is going up, retirement benefits are shrinking, and no one in Congress seems to care.”

And we will continue to have NO answers.

 

The Senate Supermajority: Constitutional?

The simple answer is “No.” Throughout the last century or so, we’ve seen many fights in the U.S. Senate take place in which a “filibuster” and/or “cloture” vote were significant, AND very controversial. Have you ever wondered where and how this process began? As important as it has been in the presidency, I think it’s important for each American to understand. Let’s take a history lesson together.

The term filibuster — from a Dutch word meaning “pirate” — became popular in the 1850s, when it was applied to efforts to hold the Senate floor in order to prevent a vote on a bill. In the early years of Congress, representatives as well as senators could filibuster. As the House of Representatives grew in numbers, however, revisions to the House rules limited debate. In the smaller Senate, unlimited debate continued on the grounds that any senator should have the right to speak as long as necessary on any issue. In 1841, when the Democratic minority hoped to block a bank bill promoted by Kentucky Senator Henry Clay, he threatened to change Senate rules to allow the majority to close debate. Missouri Senator Thomas Hart Benton rebuked Clay for trying to stifle the Senate’s right to unlimited debate. Three quarters of a century later, in 1917, senators adopted a rule (Rule 22), at the urging of President Woodrow Wilson, that allowed the Senate to end a debate with a two-thirds majority vote, a device known as “cloture.” The new Senate rule was first put to the test in 1919, when the Senate invoked cloture to end a filibuster against the Treaty of Versailles. Even with the new cloture rule, filibusters remained an effective means to block legislation, since a two-thirds vote is difficult to obtain. Over the next five decades, the Senate occasionally tried to invoke cloture, but usually failed to gain the necessary two-thirds vote. Filibusters were particularly useful to Southern senators who sought to block civil rights legislation, including anti-lynching legislation, until cloture was invoked after a 60 day filibuster against the Civil Right Act of 1964. In 1975, the Senate reduced the number of votes required for cloture from two-thirds to three-fifths, or 60 of the current one hundred senators.

Many Americans are familiar with the filibuster conducted by Jimmy Stewart, playing Senator Jefferson Smith in Frank Capra’s film Mr. Smith Goes to Washington, but there have been some famous filibusters in the real-life Senate as well. During the 1930s, Senator Huey P. Long effectively used the filibuster against bills that he thought favored the rich over the poor. The Louisiana senator frustrated his colleagues while entertaining spectators with his recitations of Shakespeare and his reading of recipes for “pot-likkers.” Long once held the Senate floor for 15 hours. The record for the longest individual speech goes to South Carolina’s J. Strom Thurmond who filibustered for 24 hours and 18 minutes against the Civil Rights Act of 1957.

So who decides how many votes it takes to pass legislation or take other actions in the House and Senate? I have always assumed those rules were set in the Constitution. However, here’s what the Constitution says about that matter in Article I, section 5: “Each House shall be the Judge of the Elections, Returns and Qualifications of its own Members, and a Majority of each shall constitute a Quorum to do Business; but a smaller Number may adjourn from day to day, and may be authorized to compel the Attendance of absent Members, in such Manner, and under such Penalties as each House may provide. Each House may determine the Rules of its Proceedings, punish its Members for disorderly Behaviour, and, with the Concurrence of two thirds, expel a Member.”

Each House may determine the Rules of its Proceedings….” is the Constitutional phrase — the ONLY one — that sets rules for operating either Chamber. That’s exactly what the Senate did as described above where is says: “the Senate reduced the number of votes required for cloture from two-thirds to three-fifths, or 60 of the current one hundred senators.”  The Senate decided that — not the Constitution! So why the heck cannot or will not the Senate change that stupid rule to 50 to pass legislation?

Some will respond that “the Senate’s business is too important to make it so easy as to implement, repeal, and change laws that were passed before.” To that my response is a direct quote from the Chicago Constitutional lawyer that in January checked out of the White House Hotel in D.C.: “Elections have consequences.” How stupid is it to think that the President who is duly elected by the people cannot sign into law any legislation that the majority members of the House of Representatives and the Senate passed and in unity crafted a bill and sent to him? After all, the majority of the American people voted for this president, this Senate, this House of Representatives. Do those duly elected people not have the authority to conduct the very activities for which they were elected to do by the American people?

This is Insane!

So what’s the answer? Rollback that stupid “60-vote” requirement that has been in place since 1975. Make it a majority with — as the Constitution states — the Vice President as the President of the Senate casting a deciding vote in the case of ties. Let the People have the bills passed that their duly elected representatives in Congress passed go to the President to be signed into law.

There are those who will say to that, “We cannot make it too easy to get laws terminated and new and different ones put in place to replace those, because in the next election, the majority could change and they could do the same thing, overturning laws just enacted.” My response to that is, “So what?” Isn’t our republic built to change as the People choose for it to change? Isn’t that why we have elections? Isn’t that why the majority rules? That’s exactly how Democracy works: “Of the People, By the People, and For the People.” Though President Obama when he declared that “elections have consequences” was not endorsing my opinion but rather rubbing his second White House victory in Republicans’ faces, what he said is demonstratively true. Elections that change the majorities in both Houses of Congress is the way it is supposed to happen in total disregard to how soon after the past Party change the most recent one happened. “Majority Rules.”

What to Do

Mitch McConnell should on Monday initiate the parliamentary process to amend the rules of the Senate, motion to change the Senate rule that requires a three-fifths majority for any legislative action to be going forward to a simple majority….period.

Senator McConnell, I know a few people in Kentucky that have voted for you many times and have supported you in many ways that are very upset that under your leadership, this current environment of “getting nothing passed or done” in the Senate is out of hand and must be fixed. We still need to get Healthcare finance revised and back in a fiduciary responsible process, tackle not just tax cuts, but tax reform, a plausible and financially sound infrastructure long-term plan, and for once and for all get the immigration debacle we face under control that includes REAL immigration process restructuring.

Senator, we CAN get this accomplished and accomplished quickly. Please put the partisanship, quid pro quo, and political correctness to the side and do what all of you in the G.O.P. promised Americans you would if you were sent back to D.C.

To quote Larry the Cable Guy, “Get ‘er Done!!!”

 

The Low Seat

Pretty much everyone I know likes to receive gifts. And most like to give gifts, too, especially to those who they know and love. But it’s rare to find people who just give and give and give to everyone and anyone – far too rare. But those people are out there.

When I was 16, three of those people came into my life and changed it forever. It happened suddenly and very dramatically. My parents split, I left home and moved 200 miles away. I was invited to become a family member of the Rodney, Francis, and Denny Duron family in Shreveport, Louisiana. I have never been the same.

Denny is a year older than I, had just graduated from high school, and was headed to college. Pastor Rodney Duron every school day of my senior year in high school got me up, cooked me “real” breakfast, and got me off to school just like I was his biological son. Each of the Durons have treated me like a son (and brother in Denny’s case) ever since. I am “Uncle Dan” to Denny and his wife’s 6 children.

They gave to me with no expectation of return. Pastor Duron taught me with his life what “taking the low seat” means. I’ll summarize it for you:

In Bible days, weddings and wedding celebrations were festive and were huge events. The host always maintained a “guest list” and seating in specific spots was always preset. When guests arrived, it was customary for them to take a seat in the very back of the room. The front table was reserved for guests of honor. The host always determined who got those seats – the “high seats.” Unfortunately it was common for some guests to “crash” the party and demand a “high seat.” Obviously those guests who calmly and voluntarily took the “low seats” were a relief to the host. And they were always marked as being different kinds of guests from the high maintenance folks that wanted preferential treatment.

Pastor Duron ALWAYS took the low seat in every setting he entered. He was an amazing pastor who spent his life pouring himself into the city of Shreveport. That meant more time with non-church members than church members: at hospitals, nursing homes, funerals of people he didn’t even know, and strangers on the street. And his being involved was never a big deal to him.  He’d sneak into a hospital room unannounced to pray for a child or a Saint about to leave Earth. It was NEVER about him — he always took “the low seat.”

He gave away smiles, money, influence in areas of people’s needs, beds in his own home, clothing, cars, labor, the message of God’s unrelenting and everlasting love for everyone, and lots and lots of hugs and smiles. Few knew what he did for others — unless they were the ones he did it for. He always gave this and more with no expectation of anything in return. Every time I ever saw him until his death 4 years ago, he always made everyone in his presence feel wanted and accepted – not just me, but everyone in his life. He never expected recognition for his considerable accomplishments at establishing an amazing church that reached a city, a school that has sent graduates to military academies, Ivy League schools, the NFL, the White House and other houses of government around the World. He did all that he did because he loved so much that he gave…and gave…and gave. He simply lived to give. His goal for everyone in his life was to see to it they had the “high seat” in his life while he was in his element sitting in the back row. And he never stopped giving because he loved people and loved investing in their lives when he could make their lives better. He always moved you down front.

The seed of that type of giving he planted in me changed my life. To this day, his son Denny (who is my best friend and Brother) treats me and everyone in his life just like Dad Duron did. His wife DeAnza and their 6 children do the same thing. They all learned the joy of combining unselfish giving with honor and passing that along in genuine fashion to everyone they meet. While I’ve had a modicum of success in my life, listening to the praise and honor lavished on me by any and all in the Duron family you’d think my life surely was the roadmap for Bill Gates, Mark Cuban, and Mother Theresa too!

I spend many days of my life seeking ways to lay aside pride, prejudices of life, ambition, and drive for “success” to look for ways to be the true giver Dad Duron was and that all in the Duron family are today. The older I get the easier it is – maybe because accumulating and “arriving” mean less and less when true values of life are driven home to me more and more. People are the important things in life. Without relationships we have and we are nothing. I truly want to help move all those folks to the front row in their life.

After all, if you believe in Creation as I do, God created Man for relationship — relationship with Him. And if that is good enough for God, it’s good enough for me!

More than ever I try really hard to make certain the people in my life know that I care for them with no reservations and no expectations, other than honesty and openness. I want them to know that I truly am concerned and interested about every part of their life, and that no matter what they face, I am willing to face it with them.

Yes, that’s a large responsibility. But it’s worth it. Know why? Nobody will be sticking dollar bills or stock certificates in my coffin. (It’s a good thing I don’t want that!) But knowing there will be a few tears along with fond memories and thankfulness from a bunch of folks for all those times “I was there for them.” That’s plenty enough for me.

I turned 64 today. Think for the next 64 I’m going to take the low seat.

I’m fine with that.

Healthcare: What do we do Now?

I’ve just about had it. Everyone understands that for 7 years Republicans promised with the House, Senate, and White House, they would ALL repeal and replace Obamacare. It hasn’t happened. And it looks like it will NOT happen. So what’s next? (I’ll put in bullet point to keep this brief)

  • If a replacement plan cannot be created and implemented, understand that options are very limited. There are only two: let Obamacare fail which will (without a replacement) throw health insurance back into the private sector — IF insurance companies still want to be a part of it; or keep Obamacare which will cost Americans trillions of MORE dollars and still will not work for any Americans except the low income sector. How so? Even though Liberal love to say that Obamacare helps the poor, it doesn’t.  That’s a boondoggle. Medicaid has been there for the poor for a long time…and it works. Low income Americans that were stuck financially between Medicaid and Commercial insurance now have insurance that others are paying for: subsidies, employer/employee taxes, levies, etc. Those punitive taxes and fees and penalties were and still are all unnecessary IF Congress would look at a common sense method of reforming healthcare finance.
  • The big stickler for the holdout Republicans is primarily that in Obamacare, large Medicaid subsidies have been given to many states to sweeten the taxpayer funded Medicaid at the state level. Of course most people LOVE handouts — especially those who don’t participate in paying for those handouts. In the D.C. atmosphere of “tax and spend,” it is virtually impossible to takeaway gifts once they are given. Those Legislators find themselves in a position of being threatened with their jobs if those state Medicaid block grants that are in place in Obamacare (and that are primarily the reason for the $1 trillion deficit in just two years of the ACA) are taken away. I’m sorry to have to put it this way, but those Legislators are making their political decisions based on political pressure, NOT what is best for Americans.
  • It will be insanity at the highest level if Congress allows the ACA to continue or if any replacement plan they pass does not terminate any of the Obamacare employer/employee fines, penalties, and other mandates and do NOT take control of the runaway Medicaid spending from Washington. THEY MUST NOT LET THE U.S. GOVERNMENT TAKEOVER AMERICAN HEALTHCARE! Why? Give me one example in U.S. history when the federal government has put its finger on the scales of the U.S. economy to pick winners and losers, take a program out of the private sector and nationalized it, or taxed any business into success. I’m waiting……waiting……waiting. It hasn’t happened! Every time the Government has done so that program has been a total failure. Healthcare finance controlled by the Government will be the same thing. Why would those 535 men and women on Capitol Hill not recognize that and even consider trying to do the same thing that has over and over again in history become a colossal failure!
  • Medicare: over and over again Socialist reformers in Congress and on the D.C. fringes keep crying “Medicare for all….Medicare for all!” What they are really crying for is “Free healthcare for all…..Free healthcare for all!” Most Americans don’t understand that Medicare is NOT an entitlement. All working Americans have a percentage of every paycheck withdrawn. Those withdrawn amounts along with a percentage amount equal paid into a Medicare account specifically for that employee. That was structured when Medicare was founded to be a government subsidized medical savings account that would be there for each American when they retire. Great program, right? Only if the money was there. We were told for decades those deposits were in the “Medicare Trust Fund.” The only problem is that Congress for years has annually raided that fund, withdrawn those taxpayer savings, and spent it to pay U.S. Government bills. That’s worked well, hasn’t it? Even stealing OUR money they have us now owing $20 trillion primarily to China! Single payer healthcare — which is what Obamacare was always intended to morph into — in any country in the World is UNSUSTAINABLE and un-affordable. Even Bernie Sanders — America’s greatest Socialist — has acknowledged that single payer is financially not viable. Who pays for it in other countries? Taxes…..taxes….taxes….more taxes.

Opinion: the U.S. Senate will NOT reach consensus on any straight repeal or a repeal and replace healthcare finance bill before Friday. Why? They don’t want to and they don’t have to. After all, what’s at stake for them? They could lose their cushy Congressional jobs if voters turn them out. But they’ll still have those amazing retirement programs that are vested for life. They’ll still be able to trip their salaries and go to work on K Street in Washington, which is where all the lobbying firms are headquartered, and they’ll be revered in their home states until they die as “great, selfless public servants who gave their lives for their fellow citizens.”

I’m afraid the horse is out of the barn. Because of greed and money and the quest for permanent power, the majority of members of Congress don’t care who controls the House, Senate, or White House. They all have verbally or quietly committed to perpetuate the Ponzi scheme of Washington: perpetuate power and income through legislation, while always turning away any legislation which might be good for Americans, but might turn off the gravy spicket for members of Congress.

If you think I’m wrong, I respect your right for that. But just because you think I’m wrong doesn’t mean I am wrong. Several days ago I released and exhaustively researched skeleton plan to YOU that if put in the hands of honest federal legislators who are really seeking a comprehensive and affordable way to give back to most Americans their healthcare plans the Dems took away with Obamacare, we could expect to see that or something similar put in place. THEY DON’T CARE BECAUSE WE DON’T CARE ENOUGH TO MAKE THEM CARE. The old healthcare finance program had issues, but those issues could have been solved with a plan that provided better access for those with existing conditions and those stuck financially between Medicaid and commercial insurance.

Why did the Democrats blow it up and put us where we are? POWER! With power in Washington, Government can control every phase of your life. Healthcare finance is just the start.

Big Brother showed up around 1984. He still live in Washington, and he’s got your number!

“From each according to his abilities, to each according to his needs”  Karl Marx

This from Karl Marx — the father of pure Socialism and Totalitarianism. Read it. I’d like any Socialist to reply to this post and explain to me who will be the one(s) to decide what the abilities of people are and who will decide who has needs that they cannot meet and how much of others should they receive.

Attorney General Sessions: He’s Not Going Anywhere

Why has President Trump started and maintained his frequent tweets that seem to attack Attorney General Jeff Sessions? That question is burning up broadcast minutes on every news shojw on television and talk radio and eating up ink on the pages of newspapers across the nation. After all, how could President Trump blast his good friend who was the very first major Republican to come out and endorse Donald Trump early in the Campaign? And if he has not liked the job the A.G. was doing, why has he just now started talking about it? Also, why even talk about it at all? He’s the President and A.G. Sessions just like every other Cabinet member works at the will of the President. If he doesn’t like the job Sessions is doing, why not just cut him loose? Remember: Donald Trump is probably the most quoted person from a television series all-time. How so? “You’re fired!” Those two words rocked the award winning and financial giant of NBC: “The Apprentice.” Also the New York billionaire has throughout his career surely fired dozens if not hundreds of managers. Firing Sessions would just be another day at the office.

Let’s look at all of the possible reasons for these apparent attacks on the Attorney General:

  1. Jeff Sessions recused himself from being any part of any investigation involving Russia and the Trump campaign. According to the President that was not discussed prior to his appointment of Sessions. He said several times in the past few days that if he had known Senator Sessions was going to recuse himself, he would have appointed someone else to the post. That recusal has really created issues for the Trump Administration. Maybe that is why he is ready to see the Attorney General move out of the A.G. job. But if so, why did he wait so long?
  2. According to the Mainstream News Media (MSM), the President would like to get rid of Special Counsel Robert Mueller who was appointed specifically to investigate potential collusion between members of the Trump Organization and the Russians. A.G. Sessions cannot fire Mueller because of his recusal. Therefore, the MSM postulate the President must want to humiliate Sessions publicly to force his resignation through his constant negative tweets. He could then have a new Attorney General dump Mueller.
  3. The President (along with millions of Americans) is questioning why the Department of Justice has not under this Attorney General launched investigations into the very obvious wrongdoers from the recent past: former Attorney General Loretta Lynch, former FBI Director James Comey, Hillary Clinton (for her mishandling of classified information and documents and her role as Secretary of State in the uranium sale to Russia), the Clinton Foundation for various issues, and ferreting out the source of leaks of classified documents and information that in doing so commit felonies. Maybe Trump’s tweets are indirectly messaging Sessions to put the A.G. on notice: “You better get going doing your job or you need to go. I’ll get somebody else who will run the Justice Department in a more professional and business like manner.”
  4. Maybe — just maybe — President Trump has ANOTHER purpose for this “dump Sessions noise” that is hidden. Remember this about Trump: he is a wily and tough businessman who negotiates deals of all kinds every day, and maybe even in his sleep. He is known for being a tough negotiator. What could be that “hidden agenda” for all this?

Now, let’s examine the possibilities and probabilities for these four “possible” reasons for the Trump constant blasting of Jeff Sessions:

  1. Jeff Sessions is a successful and very experienced lawyer, former federal Prosecutor and state Attorney General, not to mention a 20+ year U.S. Senator who knows all the operating secrets of Washington D.C. If recusal was even a remote possibility for Sessions he certainly would have discussed it with the President ad nauseum before his appointment. It would have been simple. They were together almost constantly during the campaign and during the run-up to Inauguration.
  2. No one in the Trump Organization including the President has shown any concern at all about the potential of being exposed by any investigation of collusion with Russia. That is directly opposite of Obama folks who when asked to participate in any investigation into potential wrong doing always had Obama enact executive privilege to keep them covered. The Trumpsters have all provided everything asked for in these investigations and have willingly made themselves available to all hearings they have been asked to attend. And none have claimed the 5th amendment. Even President Trump has volunteered to testify if called — something no lawyer would allow a client to do (especially a sitting President) IF he was guilty. The only reason I feel Trump would like to see Mueller go is all the time, effort, energy, and the millions of taxpayer dollars that are being wasted by this Mueller investigation. It’s initiation was virtually unprecedented. Special Counsel appointments always occur when there is evidence of wrongdoing that is presented that warrants such an investigation. From numerous intelligence sources as of this writing, there is NO shred of evidence of any collusion between the Trump Organization and the Russians in any way. The President would like to see Mueller gone but only for these reasons. And it is doubtful he would fire him or take the political risk in doing so since there nothing to hide.
  3. No doubt Mr. Trump has been waiting like all Americans for the investigations of those alleged wrongdoers to begin. However, you can bet unlike you or me, President Trump while waiting can make a phone call or two and find out why those investigations are not underway. What we do NOT know is if they may have actually been initiated and are happening. As much as the MSM think nothing in American government happens without their knowing about it, it is very possible that one or more of these investigations are underway already, especially in light of the fact the Justice Department today said they were about to announce their investigation into the government leaks. Whatever investigations are underway at Justice, Donald Trump knows about them.
  4. BINGO! I am pretty darn sure we found the reason. Read “Conclusion” below to find out what this blogger is confident is going on.

Conclusion

What did the MSM and political pundits think of Jeff Sessions when Trump announced his appointment to be Attorney General?

  • “Sessions’ abysmal record of opposition to fundamental civil rights and environmental protections disqualifies him for service as head of our federal department dedicated to justice for everyone in our country,” said Martin Hayden, Vice President of Policy & Legislation.
  •  “He’s one of the most strident anti-immigrant, anti-Muslim, anti-L.G.B.T. voices in the Senate,” said Marge Baker, executive vice president of People for the American Way, a liberal civil rights group in Washington.
  • Senator Cory Booker (D-NJ) broke Senate tradition to testify at a fellow Senator’s confirmation hearing: “The arc of the moral universe does not just naturally curve toward justice, we must bend it,” Booker said. “America needs an attorney general who is resolute and determined to bend the arc. Sen. Sessions record does not speak to that desire, intention or will.”

What do the MSM and political pundits think of Jeff Sessions this week since the inception of the negative tweets from President Trump?

  • When President Trump launched a tirade via Twitter about Session’s recusal, CNN stated this: “Read between the lines of that statement and you get this: Jeff Sessions didn’t do anything wrong! This whole thing is just Democrats! It’s no accident that within 24 hours of Trump’s angry comments about the Sessions’ recusal, he launched a tweetstorm alleging, with zero proof, that then-President Obama ordered a wiretap of him at Trump Tower during the 2016 campaign.
  • MSNBC said this: “For the president to discard Sessions now, deciding he no longer has any use for his loyal attorney general, is a seismic political divorce. Making matters worse, the president knows that if Sessions is out, Trump can appoint a new A.G. who may be far more amenable to making the White House’s Russia scandal disappear.”

Here’s what I think is going on: President Trump has a plan. He well knows how the MSM demonized Jeff Sessions during the A.G. appointment/confirmation process. They called him everything under the sun. Now, all of a sudden with President Trump’s negative tweets, the MSM and political pundits have all flipped and are all in full support of A.G. Sessions. I am confident President Trump is posturing for what is about to happen and in doing so provide cover for the Justice Department.

What if as we speak Attorney General Sessions already has in full swing or is about to set in motion in-depth investigations for wrong doing of James Comey, Loretta Lynch, Bill and Hillary Clinton and the Clinton Foundation, along with finding the leak sources in the Government?  Pundits and the MSM will no longer be able to denigrate any investigation put in motion by their current “Superstar” and “Legal and Loyal Genius” that they once despised but now all think is the most qualified person in the Trump Administration and far above President Trump in intelligence, commitment, and honesty. That’s the cover for Jeff Sessions.

If President Trump wanted Sessions to go, he’d be gone. He has a reputation for being an all-in person to those with whom he is in relationship. The President’s loyalty to his friends and family members are unquestionable. Why would he change now, especially when it comes to one of his closest friends and allies?

Attorney General Jeff Sessions ain’t going NOWHERE!

Sexism is OK: IF you’re a Liberal

There’s something about the way Liberals feel about Conservatives that becomes obvious when they speak. Remember when I explained some months ago the major differences between Liberals and Conservatives? I stated then “the fundamental premise for every opinion from every Liberal about any Conservative is this: Liberals HATE Conservatives.” That has never been clearer than today in the sometimes icy, sometimes flaming, but always contentious and inflammatory comments and hypocritical attacks on Conservatives — especially against Conservative women. These champions of sexual diversity in the workplace and in politics are forever showing this championing of women is for ALL women — unless they are Conservatives. If a woman chooses to live and support a conservative perspective, Liberals’ hate for her rises to the level of the temperature of the Sun. That Liberal disdain for Conservative women did not just begin. It’s been alive and kicking for many years. Wanna look at a few?

Sarah Palin

                  Sarah Palin
  • No Conservative has been off-limits to Bill Maher. On his show a guest brought up Sarah Palin’s daughter Bristol, who published her memoir “Not Afraid of Life.Maher quickly quipped that the working title was “Whoops, There’s a D**k in Me.”
  • SNL went crazy mocking her, and not just SNL. Palin was the “caribou Barbie,” ripped apart by Katie Couric and lampooned by Tina Fey. She was accused of staging a pregnancy to save one of her daughters from the shame of life as a single momand of being a lousy mother, for maintaining her career with a newborn at home. Internet searches for “Sarah Palin bikini” and “Sarah Palin naked” soared. Male MSM radio and television commentators seemed fixated on her “babe” looks and “heartthrob” appeal and, after the election, those criticisms escalated: they called her a diva, a whack job, a hillbilly, an addictive shopper, a narcissist.
  • David Letterman was not to be outdone: “During her trip to New York, Sarah Palin bought makeup from Bloomingdale’s to update her ‘slutty flight attendant’ look.” ~ David Letterman
  • And even Candidate Obama had to weigh in on the Palin sexism: “That’s not change. That’s just calling something the same thing something different. You know you can put lipstick on a pig, but it’s still a pig…” ~ Barack Obama about Sarah Palin
  • “The high-sheen lip gloss, the ‘Naughty Monkey’ brand red pumps, the black leather outfits, the winking, for heaven’s sake. She’s the original ‘Mean Girl’ — the head honcho of Orwell’s ‘Junior Anti-Sex League’ dressed to kill. You want her, but you can’t have her. ~ Gene Lyons about Sarah Palin.
  • Francine McKenna, a feminist blogger for the Huffington Post, wrote that Palin – who calls herself a feminist – was the “Stepford” robot of the conservative movement. “The Republican strategists have successfully engineered a ‘Stepford-like’ robot candidate intended to appeal to men of all political persuasions who are excited by the sexy schoolteacher kitten with a whip persona she’s so good at promoting,” wrote McKenna. “That segment of the voting population – men between the ages of 18-98  – doesn’t care if she makes up words. In fact, they’d like her even more if she didn’t talk at all.”

Condoleeza Rice

Even before the 2008 Presidential campaign during which the world was introduced to the former Republican governor of Alaska, Liberal bashing of conservative women was almost non-stop. Condoleeza Rice was an easy target for Liberal sexists.  She was the perfect mark: African American, good looking, brilliant (much smarter than most men), well spoken, well liked, and of course a Conservative. She was the perfect fit for Secretary of State when Bush 43 needed a replacement in that position for Colin Powell.  She was politically saavy, a history buff, and knew most of the World leaders with whom she would regularly interface in the wake of the greatest terrorist attack in U.S. history. She started her political career as an expert on the Soviets. And her southern roots in Birmingham, Alabama gave her an understanding of America, Americans, racism, sexism, and how to deal with it all. She told one MSM Liberal show host: “I, frankly, think we crossed the bar on African-Americans quite some time ago. I’m not sure we’ve crossed it on women.” She not only had to deal with issues regarding a black woman being Secretary of State; she had to deal with being a woman. And boy did she get razzed:

Condoleeza Rice
  • Glenn Kessler of the Washington Post had this to say about his friend Coit Blacker and Secretary Rice: “Blacker, who is gay, wanted to show his partner how tight her [Condoleezza Rice’s] behind is; he postulated that if he aimed a quarter at her butt, it would bounce off like a rocket. He was right. Rice, who was dancing, didn’t realize what he had done until everyone began laughing hysterically. She was flattered — and proud.”
  • Rice’s nomination as Secretary of State brought those from the Left out in droves: According to the Washington Post, her nomination garnered “the most negative votes cast against a nominee for that post in 180 years.” As the Senate debated her nomination, Senator Barbara Boxer charged that Rice “frightened the American people” into supporting the Iraq War; Senator Jim Jeffords accused her of being part of an effort to “distort information” in the service of “political objectives”; and Senator Pat Leahy, who voted in her favor, endorsed her by saying that her tenure as national-security adviser lacked “strong leadership, openness, and sound judgment.”
  • But the remarks of Senate Democrats paled in comparison to the material served up by America’s humorists. Syndicated cartoonist Ted Rall depicted Rice proclaiming herself Bush’s “house nigga.” Rall’s depiction was followed months later by that of Jeff Danziger of the New York Times Syndicate. Danziger drew a big-lipped, barely literate Condoleezza Rice, nursing the aluminum tubes cited by the White House as evidence of Iraq’s pursuit of nuclear weapons.

Kellyanne Conway

The first woman to ever run a winning presidential campaign would expect to be lifted up by all as an extreme success, especially in doing so providing the win to a man who defeated the most prominent female Democrat in a generation. One would expect that feminists would lift her up as a hero of accomplishment to women everywhere. Not so. Kellyanne since assuming in post-election the Senior White House Advisor position in President Trump’s Administration, almost daily receives sexist cracks from all fronts.

  • Democratic Congressman Cedric Richmond made a bizarre, sexually charged joke about Kellyanne Conway looking “familiar” on the Oval Office couch — obviously a reference to White House intern Monica Lewinsky’s storied visits to President Clinton’s Oval Office.
  • Richmond’s joke was immediately followed with this from a Democratic operative: “Why does Kellyanne Conway always look like she’s still drunk & wearing make up from last night’s bender?”
  • When Kellyanne did not appear on television for a series of days in a row, one reporter tweeted this: @KellyannePolls Where is Kellyanne Conway? Is the “poor waif” hiding or is she the “wicked witch of the east” & the WH has fallen on her?
  • SNL depicts Conway — the president of a successful polling company she launched at age 29 — as “an airhead, a publicity hound, and a gold digger.”

Conway has a lot to point out about sexism from the Mainstream Media. Conway was on CNN with Anderson Cooper, who rolled his eyes at her when she reminded him that she was predicting President Trump would win Michigan. Many felt Cooper’s eye-rolling was because of his sexist contempt for her. Why? She’s a Conservative. She had this to say: “Hillary Clinton is in search of sexism as a lame excuse for why her disastrous candidacy and campaign lost six months ago,” she said. “I face sexism a lot of times when I show up for interviews like that. She continued: “Could you imagine rolling your eyes, having a male anchor on a network roll eyes at Hillary Clinton, at … a female representative spokeswoman for President Obama or President Bill Clinton? I think not,” she said.

 

 

“Others”

  • Sara Huckabee Sanders just named as the new White House Press Secretary. She as a Conservative gets the sexist Leftist shots every day. “I feel like Sarah Huckabee Sanders left and right eye switched places or something,” comedian Akliah Hughes wrote on Twitter.
  • The propagandists at The New York Times and MSNBC questioned Sanders’ character and called her a liar, but now journalists are attacking her physical appearance. “Sarah Huckabee Sanders looks like every woman eating lobster on a cruise ship,” “Family Guy” writer Damien Fahey tweeted.
  • After Jerry Brown was caught discussing whether or not to call his conservative opponent Meg Whitman a “whore,” NOW barely batted an eyelash – and endorsed Brown just hours later. In fact, the president of the California chapter of NOW even agreed with Brown’s characterization of his opponent. “Meg Whitman could be described as ‘a political whore.’ Yes, that’s an accurate statement,” California NOW president Parry Bellasalma told Talking Points Memo after the incident.
  • “Many senators are known for many things …. We in the Senate refer to Senator Gillibrand as the hottest member.” ~ Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid on Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand
  • about Nevada senatorial candidate Sharon Angle: Citizen Radio host and “feminist” writer Allison Kilkenny has bashed Sharon Angle as “crazy.” “Unlike Rand Paul, Sharon just can’t hide the crazy, and she’s not savvy enough to pass off the delusional stuff spewing from her mouth as ‘being mavericky,’” wrote Kilkenny. In a column denouncing “Republican ‘Mean Girls,’” Maureen Dowd compared Angle to “the inebriated lady in a country club bar” and described her views as “nutty.”
  • about Delaware GOP senatorial candidate Christine O’Donnell:  The avowed feminist blog Jezebel regularly mocks O’Donnell, and has called her “batsh-t,” and the Rachel Maddow show has featured videos on O’Donnell’s sex life and views on masturbation. Last month, Joy Behar called the Delaware candidate a “witch who doesn’t masturbate.”
  • First Lady Melania Trump does not escape the sexist attacks either. There was intense media scrutiny over Melania Trump’s White House portrait, in which she crosses her arms. The Boston Globe’s headline asked, “So what’s with the crossed arms?” while former President Barack Obama had his arms crossed in one of his presidential portraits, as did John F. Kennedy, Abraham Lincoln and Joe Biden in his vice presidential portrait. But for some reason, it was significant that Melania had done the same.
  • Gene Lyons of Salon had this to say about Michele Backmann, Sarah Palin, and Christine O’Donnell: “To the connoisseur of American political theater, the most entertaining aspect of the 2010 election season has been the rise of the right-wing cuties — political celebrities whose main qualification is looking terrific on television. From where I sit, in a comfortable chair in front of the tube, the GOP Cupcake Factor has enlivened an otherwise dreary campaign season.”

Summary

We could go on and on with example after example of the extreme sexism from the Left for Conservative women. But fortunately for Conservative Americans, we now understand the root of the hatred that causes this sexism: it is the frustration of the Left’s not understanding the ability of Conservative women to rise above Party, to put political correctness to the side, reject the Elitism of the Left, and naturally and forcefully to simply do and support the one thing that sets Conservatism apart from Liberalism — Honesty. Additionally, conservatives trust that most other Americans will do the right thing and support American leadership — even if those leaders are from a different political party. Those characteristics of Conservative women make Liberals’ heads spin.

But isn’t that the Liberal mantra? They couldn’t pass the Civil Rights Law in the Johnson Administration. It took Republicans to get it done. Liberal Democrats had no desire to end slavery. It took a Republican President and a War. Liberal Democrats did not give women the right to vote. It took Republicans. But those truths are substantive as are the positive accomplishments great in number by Conservative women. Rather than examine the substance that is there and try to adopt all or some of it, Liberals prefer to simply make fun of, tell jokes about it, and laugh at Conservatives that happen to be women.

Makes me feel a little dirty to think about it. What about you?

 

 

 

 

The Deep State: “RussiaGate”

“There is no serious person out there who would suggest that you could even rig America’s elections…There is no evidence that has happened in the past, or that there are instances that that could happen this time…So I’d advise Mr. Trump to stop whining.”Barack Obama, October 2016

One of two things is apparent: either Barack Obama ignored the “real” news he had received from the Intelligence Community two months before saying the above, or the “real” news was not real at all, but “fake news.” Stating either one of those two to be correct would be pure speculation on my part. But one thing is certain: RussiaGate is alive and kicking. Whether “real” or “fake,” it has already cost taxpayers millions of dollars as multiple investigations by Congress, the FBI, and now Special Counsel Robert Mueller are engaged and all aggressively pursuing any evidence of collusion by anyone affiliated with Donald Trump or even the President himself with the Russians.

I have asked this question before, but its significance bears its repeating: with the most elaborate, most well equipped, most proficient intelligence gathering capabilities on the face of the Earth, is it plausible to believe at this point almost a year into RussiaGate not a single shred of evidence of Russian collusion by the Trump Organization has been leaked to and/or unearthed by the Press? Certainly in this 24/7 news cycle in which we live (that has turned into the 24/7 “Leak” cycle), if there was any evidence of collusion, we would certainly know about it. Further, I hear every day this statement from multiple news sources: “Every Intelligence Agency has confirmed the Russians tried to hack the 2016 Presidential election.” THAT IS NOT TRUE! Even the NY Times corrected that fake story by stating that just 2 of the 16 intelligence agencies had participated in the preparation of a report that was then given to the Department of National Intelligence (DNI) about Russian hacking. Later it was revealed that 13 handpicked intelligence employees prepared that report. No big deal? Normally when such a report is prepared, several HUNDRED intelligence specialists are involved!

Even if their conclusion was legitimate and accurate, where is the evidence? When I ask that question to people in a position of authority, all I am told is that “the evidence of Russian election interference is classified since it’s part of an ongoing investigation.” Really? Are we expected to believe that ANY evidence at all of ANYTHING illegal in the political world of Washington D.C. can possibly remain secret — no matter if classified? Don’t tell the news media that — they’d go out business not having any “fake news” from “anonymous source leaks” to report.

Based on simple logic, I have over this past weekend — in the midst of numerous hours of exhaustive investigation looking for Russian election hacking evidence — made a blockbuster conclusion: there was NO Russian attempts to hack into the 2016 election that had not been attempted in previous American elections over and over again. And the Obama Administration knew about them for years and did nothing about them. Additionally, Russians have been caught over and over again attempting to hack into numerous other countries’ election systems as well as have other countries like Iran and China.  Attempted foreign election hacking is not new! (Even the Obama State Department participated with a liberal Israeli political organization, spending millions to try and unseat Prime Minister Netanyahu in his last election. That’s not “hacking,” but definitely is “collusion!”) The NY Times, the Washington Post, all the broadcast news agencies, and the Justice Department have known about this and monitored these election hacking attempts for years. Since it’s nothing new, why the big deal about it now? And who started it? The answer to those questions are revealed below.

The Deep State and the White House

Remember that President Obama is the first U.S. President in almost a century to remain in Washington D.C. when leaving office. The previous five have not only immediately left town, they all have maintained silence when it comes to opinions and discussions about their successors in the White House, usually for years if not always. Not so Barack Obama.

The Obamas setup shop in a mansion barely two miles from the White House. It’s a huge house. But it has to be. Not only do the Obamas live there along with Michelle’s mother, Valerie Jarrett moved in. And it’s the headquarters for political operatives that apparently are frantically creating opportunities to keep the former president active in D.C. politics. The apparent main objective? To discredit Donald Trump, everything he stands for (and that he was elected for), and everything the President initiates that is perceived by Obama to in any way diminish his accomplishments during his 8 years at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. And there’s more “there” there than we expected was there.

The non stop leaks from the government moles (or “unnamed sources”) to the media appear to originate from various leakers that are comprised of carryover Obama Administration government “lifers” whose loyalties remain with their former boss. It further appears that much of the “leak process” — in which leaks are delivered to which media outlets and their timing — is also coordinated. Conventional wisdom is that the coordination is initiated very quietly from the “Obama bunker” and its inhabitants. The fact that as recently as October of 2016, then President Obama would actually say about the purported Russia election hacking what he did above shows that someone somewhere is coordinating all the attacks on the current administration. How else would he so suddenly change his tune, and why? Because the plan of attack from the Deep State initiated it.

Who comprises the “Deep State?”

It has long been known that Obama’s closest advisor and confidant is Valerie Jarrett. In D.C. political circles she was quietly called Obama’s “Handler,” by some. Although she had no formal Administration title during those eight years, (see her “real” titles below) nobody or no thing ever made it to the Oval Office without first getting her approval. And she more than anyone else had the President’s ear.

Jarrett is not a media hog. In fact she shuns media attention, preferring to operate behind the scenes with as little attention as possible focused on her. This gives her uninterrupted time to concentrate on the Obama agenda, both during and after the White House Obama occupancy. Jarrett was born in Shiraz, Iran, to American parents James E. Bowman and Barbara Taylor Bowman. One of her maternal great-grandfathers, Robert Robinson Taylor, was an architect who was the first accredited African American architect, and the first African-American student enrolled at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. She is is an American lawyer, businesswoman, and civic leader. She served as the Senior Advisor to the President and Assistant to the President for Public Engagement and Intergovernmental Affairs from January 20, 2009 to January 20, 2017. Prior to that, she served as a co-chair of the Obama–Biden Transition Project. Jarrett was one of President Obama’s longest serving advisors and confidantes and was widely tipped for a high-profile position in an Obama administration. Jarrett had a staff of about three dozen and received full-time Secret Service protection. Jarrett’s role as both a friend of the Obamas and as senior advisor in the White House was controversial: Robert M. Gates, former Secretary of Defense, objected in his memoirs to her involvement in foreign security affairs; David Axelrod reported in his memoirs Rahm Emanuel’s attempts to have her selected as Obama’s replacement in the Senate, due to concerns about the difficulty in working with a family friend in a major policy role. So you see, she is a substantive person. And very quietly she is an Obama activist. She is formally joining the Obama Foundation, the 501(c)(3) non-profit foundation of the Obamas. There is no publicly listed address for the Foundation. But the telephone number to call for information is in area code 202 — Washington D.C. Construction of The Obama Library is scheduled to begin shortly on the south side of Chicago, and the Obama Foundation is scheduled to be headquartered there. When that happens, the unofficial address of the Deep State will change zip codes, but not bosses.

ANTIFA

Antifa, which stands for “anti-fascist action,” is a network of loosely affiliated far-left anarchist and communist groups that orchestrate violent protests and attacks on populists, conservatives, and anyone else its members deem to be “fascists” or “Nazis.”  Antifa was formed originally in Germany in the 1980s, its members taking the name of the communist paramilitary groups that engaged the Nazis in street-fighting in the 1930s. It now has active cells across the world, including in Germany, the U.S., Canada, the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, Czechia, and France.  And it has been verified that in multiple pro-Trump rallies, the campus rallies to promote Free Speech and other conservative causes, and in even those town hall meetings by Republican Congressmen and Congresswomen, in those that turn violent the perpetrators of the violence (the ones who mask themselves and refuse to be identified) are on the most part members of Antifa.  “Anyone who tries to hold any sort of right-wing event literally gets beat up by militant communists in the street,” said independent journalist Lauren Southern, who was present at one of the pro-Trump Berkeley rallies, in a video taken immediately following the violence.  Harrowing video footage taken by Southern’s crew showed Antifa street fighters throwing bricks and M-80 explosives into the crowd, as well as assaulting Trump supporters. Other footage released by someone present at the event showed one Antifa thug hit a Trump supporter over the head with a bicycle chain and lock.

Make no mistake about it, Antifa is doing the bidding for someone or some group. They are well funded. There are chartered buses parked near to the sites where they demonstrate and riot to bring the Antifa members to the demonstrations that have often morphed into riots. Members of Antifa are all dressed in black and wear masks. The signs and posters they bring and use in their demonstrations are professionally designed and printed. They are simply a “demonstration front” for the Deep State.

The Liberal Alt-Left Media

Please do not tag me as a conspiracy theorist, but I’m pretty certain the puzzle pieces are fitting together to reveal the puzzle. And the Alt-Left Media are multiple pieces of the Deep State puzzle. I doubt if there are regularly scheduled conference calls between the Obama Foundation, Antifa, and members of the Media. But there certainly is communication if for no other reason than to coordinate. Note that in all these demonstrations-turned-riot, the Media is always right there on the spot, showing every second of the demonstrations and especially the riots. There is a definite left leaning purpose for the in depth coverage of Antifa. And the Media are all-in.

Members of Congress

There is NO way that activist members of both Houses in Congress are not directly involved in the Deep State.  There are far too many connected statements, press releases, talking points, and buzz words and phrases for that not be true. And surprisingly, Deep State legislators are not restricted to only the Left — establishment G.O.P. members in some cases sit in the Deep State front row. What other explanation could there be for multiple Senators who on numerous occasions voted for the Repeal/Replace of Obamacare bill to now say they will not support that exact same bill they accepted before? They knew then their Deep State membership could be protected. They knew no bill passed to do away with Obamacare would ever be signed into law, so they could vote that way. Now their Deep State ties are being exposed. There can be NO other explanation.

Additionally, RINO’s have over and over again taken pot shots against President Trump, spoken out against him personally and his Presidential persona, and have viciously rebuked his proposals — the very ones many supported during their campaigns for re-election in 2016 and that they were returned to Congress to support! Remember this: REAL liberals think conservative Americans are either too dumb to understand what liberals are doing or that conservatives do not care.

The Money

No doubt all of these Deep State actions require money, and a lot of it. Think that through: the paying of demonstrators and rioters has been verified as has paying for charter buses, payroll, printing and design, all of which do not come cheap. There are numerous leftist organizations who could be guilty in the funding of the Deep State. But the entirety of this operation is far too expensive than to rely on a few non profit political organizations for the dough. It takes deep pockets with staying power. Who has the deepest pockets on the Left? George Soros. It is almost a certainty that Soros personally and through any of the multitude of companies and/or organizations he controls, many of which are non profits, are funneling millions of dollars to fund these Deep State operations. The coordinated attacks on all things Trump, the likes of which have never been seen in the U.S., obviously originate from very concentrated and sophisticated sources for planning, operational control, and finance. Soros has been known to fund these types of operations before. I believe he is at it again.

The Democrat Party

The DNC and almost every Dem in Congress could easily be part of this Deep State operation. Let’s face it: the DNC, even with its fragmentation during and since the 2016 election, is the most structured, well-funded, and organized political organization in U.S. history. Even though their leadership is weak, the throngs of adherents who were whipped into constant frenzy by Hillary during the campaign to hate all things Donald Trump are still panting to find any way possible to un-seat President Trump. Congressional Democrats understand that. And in their trek to get away from the horrible national, state, and local election losses over the past years, they are today turning Americans’ attention and blame away from the Democrat Party and are finding new ways to focus that blame and the attention of voters to Donald Trump. “Trump hate” is abundant. Obama put “RussiaGate” on the table, Democrats and the Alt-Left Media are playing that game as long as they can. Their mantra has always successfully been “spew the negative against all things and all people conservative as long as it works.” Through the assistance of their media minions, Democrats are doing so and will continue until Democrat Leadership blows the retreat bugle. And they do not give up easy.

Summary

The Deep State is no longer the moniker for members of the intelligence community. It has become the name for the haters, obstructionists, Antifa, Alt-Left, anti-Trump factions who through a partly coordinated and partly free lance continues a negative and hurtful campaign against not just President Trump, but ALL conservatives. They are fighting to bury conservatives of every ilk. The cast of Deep State fighters is comprised of numerous well known politicians, entertainers, financial empires and billionaires, and blue collar Americans who have swallowed the Socialist pill. The goal? Put the U.S. government back on the Obama track toward Globalism that will make European Socialism look like a weekend at Disney World.

I long ago heard a sermon in which a pastor said the greatest trick of Satan is to make people think he is not real or not there, or he really cannot do anything to hurt humans. I am not saying the Deep State or those who are part of it are Satan, but I DO feel strongly that they share the same methodology that the pastor said Satan uses: to make Americans think the Deep State is a figment of conspiracy theorists minds and is not real. There are too many puzzle pieces that have begun to very nicely and smoothly fit together to ignore the existence of the Deep State. Watch D.C. over the next few months and see if more and more of it is revealed. Be cautious and be vigilant. Don’t let it take you by surprise.

It’s real.

 

 

 

 

 

 

“Conflicts of Interest”

There are so many conflicts of interest in Washington D.C. that have consumed the U.S. political system that Americans are becoming numbed to them. It reminds me of the old story of the frog and boiling water. If you boil a pot of water and then toss a frog into the pot, it will immediately hop out. But, if you put the frog in a pot full of tap water, set the pot on a stove and slowly heat the water until it boils, the frog will boil. Many Americans have been in the “conflict of interest” boiling water pot for so long they do not understand what is happening. There are many conflicts right under our noses today and others that have been front and center over the last few years. Let’s look at a few:

Bill Clinton/The Clinton Foundation/Secretary Hillary Clinton

Wow. Where to begin! Foundations are typically established to raise tax free dollars for charitable purposes. The Clinton Foundation was no different. Bill Clinton was the official “rainmaker” for dollars when it was established. His being past President opened doors around the world for donation opportunities. According to IRS From 990, (which is the financial form all 501 c3 charitable organizations file) the year after Hillary left her post as Secretary of State, the Foundation received $148 million in contributions and had $85 million in “expenses.” Two questions immediately come to mind: where did the $148 million come from and where did the $85 million in expense go, especially since Bill, Hillary, nor Chelsey took salaries from the Clinton Foundation. There were extensive private jet charters, lavish receptions, “The Clinton Initiative” — which brings the Nation’s A-list Liberals to New York to rub shoulders each other every year and costs millions to produce — of course by the Clinton Foundation.

When Hillary Clinton was appointed by Obama as Secretary of State, she signed a form for herself as did the Clinton Foundation which bound both to not accept contributions from foreign governments during her service. The 2008 ethics agreement had been hashed out by top aides for President Obama and Clinton Foundation officials. The agreement provided an avenue for the foundation to accept donations from foreign governments that had never given before or were increasing the size of their donations. Those donations were to be submitted to the State Department for vetting. But State Department officials have said the process was never used. According to an email sent to Clinton Foundation officials, the ambassador to Qatar requested a meeting with former president Bill Clinton in 2012, apparently so that he could present a $1 million check that Qatar had promised in honor of Clinton’s birthday in 2011. Amitabh Desai, who served as a foreign-policy adviser to the former president, wrote other officials that he had met with the Qatari official. Using Clinton’s initials, Desai indicated that the ambassador had requested “to see WJC ‘for five minutes’ in NYC, to present $1 million check that Qatar promised for WJC’s birthday in 2011.”

Hillary as Sec. of State had to sign off on the deal that brokered the sale of 20% of America’s uranium to a Russian entity controlled by President Putin. The initial sale was to a Canadian company who then sold to the Russian entity. The officers of the Canadian entity subsequently donated millions to the Clinton Foundation and Bill gave a $500,000 speech in Russia. Any conflicts of interest there?

Of course the multitude of speeches given to foreign entities — many with government ties — and the tens of millions of dollars that were subsequently made to the Foundation violated those two 2008 agreements.

Many Americans do not even care about the obvious conflict of interest represented here. Why can that be? Such has become so common place in Washington many just accept it as “business as usual.”

Attorney General Loretta Lynch re: Bill Clinton and Hillary email investigation

Bill Clinton was as part of the Clinton Foundation investigation underway by the FBI as a principal in that ongoing investigation: a subject of the matter and also a potential witness. How could the Attorney General of the United States meet with a person involved in an active case? Further, she wrote an email that many think was a product of her infamous Sky Harbor tarmac meeting with Bill telling the DNC that she would make sure that if the FBI investigation into Hillary got “sticky,” she would intervene. THEN she instructed FBI Director Comey to not call the HRC investigation an “investigation,” but rather a “matter.” Conflict of Interest and possibly Obstruction of Justice.

Former FBI Director James Comey

Comey — because of conflict — had no business investigating the Clinton email scandal. There are stark similarities to a previous Clinton scandal. In 1996, James Comey acted as the deputy special counsel for the Senate committee investigating the Whitewater scandal. The Senate was investigating shady real-estate loans authorized while Bill Clinton was governor of Arkansas. (via ABC News) Many people connected to the Whitewater company were arrested and charged with over 40 crimes, yet the Clintons remained unscathed. James Comey acknowledged that Hillary Clinton obstructed the investigation and destroyed evidence, yet he decided not to prosecute due to lack of “intent.” That was in the Whitewater case!  Sound familiar?

Additionally, through his brother Peter, James Comey has another Clinton conflict: Peter Comey is an executive at DLA Piper, the law firm responsible for filing the Clinton Foundation’s taxes. James Comey personally holds a significant mortgage on his brother’s home. Though that in itself is not a direct conflict, it further aggravates the conflict of interest in Comey’s involvement in the Clinton investigation and should have never been allowed. Because of ethics, James Comey should have recused himself. And necessary recusal does not stop with Comey.

Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein

Everyone who knows Rod Rosenstein has nothing but good to say about him.  In his Senate confirmation hearing, he was drilled with question after question by primarily Democrat Senators who were trying to link him in some way to President Trump and somehow disqualify him. He handled himself honestly and professionally. All who watched the hearing could in no way feel uncomfortable with his serving as Deputy AG. However, there are some problems of potential conflict that have arisen. And now Rosenstein himself has even mentioned a “possible” need for his recusal in the Russian investigation. The most obvious reason for Rosenstein to recuse himself would be the prospect of his being a potential witness in the obstruction of justice investigation against President Trump. Recently a leak from the special counsel investigation revealed that Trump is now a potential target — a leak clearly calculated to deter Trump from his reported consideration of firing Robert Mueller — the Special Counsel appointed by Rosenstein. If this account is false and Rosenstein is not thinking of recusing himself, he should be. He recommended that Comey be fired. That made him a critical player and potential witness to the events underlying the obstruction allegations. He also holds the final word on whether Mueller can continue as special counsel. That gives him a modicum of influence over a Special Prosecutor who could be investigating Rosenstein’s own role in the firing of Comey. Rosenstein could also be a witness on the narrative put out by the White House after the firing — citing Rosenstein as the moving force behind the termination (an account Rosenstein reportedly objected to as false or misleading).

Special Investigator Robert Mueller

Here’s where Conflict in all this begins to get really creepy. Robert Mueller actually interviewed with President Trump in the Oval Office for Comey’s job as FBI Director! Imagine the extent of conflict of interest for Mueller just for that. But it gets deeper. Not only did James Comey and Mueller work together in the Justice Department, they are close personal friends.  Mueller recommended to then President Obama to appoint Comey as his replacement at the FBI. After Mueller was appointed Special Counsel by Rosenstein and Comey was asked to testify before the Senate Judiciary Committee, Mueller and Comey met to discuss what he was allowed to say to the Committee. How odd is that! Comey is a key witness in the Russia Investigation that Mueller was appointed to lead, Mueller is his close friend, Mueller applied for Comey’s position when President Trump fired Comey, and both Comey and Mueller’s longtime friend and associate while at the Justice Department with Rosenstein was appointed to investigate Russian election interference regarding possible involvement with the Trump Campaign! This example of collusion in D.C. and that no none has screamed of the conflict is mind boggling.

House Speaker Paul Ryan

This inclusion in the list of he most obvious with conflicts may surprise you. But the House Speaker has on multiple occasions during the campaign and since the election shown his disdain and vocal laugh of support for the person who G.O.P. delegates nominated to be the Party’s. candidate and then Americans elected to be the President. The Speaker of the House has several jobs but one main one: to work with the President (and coordinate with House members) to establish the legislation that the President was elected by the People to put in place. Ryan continues both quietly and sometimes vocally to reject Trump as President — maybe not outwardly, but often with actions and in-actions. But he very vocally has several times put distance between himself and President Trump: “There are basically two things that I want to make very clear, as for myself as your speaker. I am not going to defend Donald Trump, not now, not in the future, as you probably heard I dis-invited him from my first congressional district GOP event this weekend, I think I do one every year, and I’m not going to be campaigning with him in the next 30 days. Look, you guys know I have serious concerns about our nominee. I hope you appreciate that I’m doing what I think is best for you, the members, not what is best for me.” If there were questions about Paul Ryan’s ability and commitment to serve whoever was elected as President by Americans, that statement he made erased those questions. He has numerous Conflicts of Interest.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell

I honestly could not believe that voters in Kentucky returned McConnell to the Senate. He walks a very thin line between being truly conservative and being a RINO — “Republican in Name Only.” And he does NOT like President Trump. Just like Ryan as House Speaker, McConnell as the Majority Leader in the Senate has the principle job of getting the legislation (promised by the President during his campaign and for which voters elected him) written and passed in the Senate. Not only has McConnell slow played to the extreme getting legislation passed, he has both during the campaign and since the election been a vocal detractor of President Trump in similar fashion the Ryan. The fact that the Republican leader in the House would ignore the will of the American people who elected the President and who also assured G.O.P. control of not only the White House, but both the House and the Senate, and embark on a path of his own in the Senate. That in itself conflicts McConnell in many ways.

In Conclusion

There are numerous other Conflicts in Washington D.C. that are perpetuating the significant and rapid decline of simply representing Americans and working with the White House going about the Peoples’ business every day. Do you know what’s scary? Americans are becoming more and more numb to the Conflicts daily. It seems acceptance of Conflicts as simply normal operating procedures for our government is dangerously eroding the effectiveness of Constitutional work by ALL in federal public service in D.C.

I remember a time when being in Congress, the White House, or being staff members or even interns or volunteers in any department of the U.S. Government were admirable, honorable, garnered respect from Americans. But for many years now the approval ratings by Americans for those in Congress has hovered in the teens. The same holds true for most others in D.C. Trust in their true representation of Americans is withering a little more each day. And the danger is that the thin line between representative democracy and socialist and totalitarian government withers away along with Americans’ trust.

President Trump with his sometimes narcissistic attitude and brash ways of communication seems to be the first American President in decades that conservative American voters can relate to and therefore support him in his efforts. Ask some who live somewhere other than the two coasts or Chicago how they feel about the job he’s doing. Don’t trust the polling agencies: they are just like the Congressional Budget Office when they make financial predictions — they’re usually way off and always have their own agenda.

It’s time for all those with Conflicts of Interest with Americans and this Administration to step aside. They in spite of making commitments to serve Americans and those in authority American voters put there illustrate daily their major Conflicts of Interest: they choose to “do their own thing.” At a company when any employee who knows the plans and directives that company’s Administration has put in place and that employee refuses to comply with “the bosses,” those “bosses” put that employee in the road.

Americans are the bosses. Let’s stop the Conflicts and put those people on the street.

 

 

 

 

American Justice System is Seldom Just

Living in the greatest country in the World, (which we do) we expect every system and process in to be the greatest in the World when compared to those of other countries. Most Americans’ default mindset is that America in every area is the best on Earth. That is not so, unfortunately. I won’t analyze every process and system in America, but I want to look at one: the Justice System.

I echo the teaching of many sociologists who say “Standing still in life is not possible. In all of life’s processes we are either moving forward or slipping backwards. Simply remaining at the same life level is not achievable.” No doubt at one time in U.S. history our Justice System was the best there was. I think we have, however, bogged down after a couple of centuries of improving the American Justice system and we are sliding backwards. For the purpose of this discussion we will look at the Justice system splitting it in two: Criminal Justice and Social/Political Justice.

Criminal Justice System

The “Pledge of Allegiance” ends with the guarantee that in America, there is “liberty and justice for all.” Not so in the Criminal Justice system. Until a few years ago I thought the system was clicking along as always, keeping Americans safe from those who take advantage of others by breaking laws. I have tremendous respect for those who serve in the law enforcement community in the U.S. In many ways those are thankless jobs. The horrors they live through at work everyday are mind boggling. And as serious and violent crime in America grows and spreads daily, so does the potential for personal harm for those who serve. When those who have committed crimes are taken off the streets and inserted into the Criminal Justice system, the Justice System “injustice” begins.

First, criminal defense is horrendously expensive. Many criminal defense attorneys recognize the financial opportunities in criminal defense and specialize in that sector. Most attorneys today concentrate on other areas of law that are less controversial, easier to navigate through, and more profitable. Therefore those facing criminal prosecution often find it difficult to obtain the best criminal defenders. Some will counter by stating that every state has an Indigent Defender Division that (for those who for financial reasons cannot get the best representative there is) guarantees everyone facing prosecution are able to get “adequate” representation. With rare exceptions that is NOT the case. Why? Needless to say the list of attorneys excited to perform pro bono criminal services is rather short. I’m not saying there are not many attorneys who practice law because of their commitment to provide their services to any who need them. I am saying that most who enter the practice of law seek areas in which to practice that are more profitable than criminal cases. Most jurisdictions require a certain number of pro bono hours or cases, but the criminal defense work overload in almost every American jurisdiction dictates far less legal concentration on cases that put indigent defendants at a tremendous disadvantage. In those types of cases, almost always all of the elements that constitute a thorough defense are performed at a much lower level for indigent defendants than for those able to pay for private representation. Elements of prosecution like discovery, depositions, filing of motions, managing cases in hearings and actual trial all suffer in the Indigent System.

Why is that? “Follow the money.” Again I am not stating that all attorneys are so greedy as to not care about assuring those accused in criminal cases adequate representation. What I AM saying is that because there is so little compensation in that field with so many cases, most attorneys opt to practice in other areas, and many who do practice there are just getting started in Law.

I will say something that will probably shock many readers: if you are African-American or Hispanic, the American Criminal Justice System does not work as well for you as it does for others. In addition to the reasoning above, minorities constitute the large majority of those caught up in the Criminal Justice System. And typically those are the least likely to be able to afford the best defense. There are many reasons we could discuss for the ethnic disparity in the system, but we will not in this conversation. For discussion simply know that disparity is factual.

On the flip side is the fact that Caucasians who break the law typically have a tremendous advantage in the criminal process. Much of that advantage is a direct result of their ethnicity and the perceptual and real benefits of that: economics being the main one. Odds are that a White man age 18-34 will be able to obtain better legal representation that a Black man the same age because of financial capability. There are dramatic race differences in crime rates. Asians have the lowest rates, followed by whites, and then Hispanics. Blacks have notably higher crime rates. This pattern holds true for virtually all crime categories and for virtually all age groups. In 2013, a black was six times more likely than a non-black to commit murder, and 12 times more likely to murder someone of another race than to be murdered by someone of another race. Attention to race in law enforcement is a natural result of knowledge of these and other crime statistics.

An unfortunate result of these statistics and conditions is U.S. incarceration. One report states that U.S. Whites comprise 64% of the population and 39% of local, state, and federal prison population, while U.S. Blacks comprise just 13% of the population but 40% of those incarcerated. In many states sentences for Blacks and Hispanics convicted of serious and/or violent crimes are stiffer than sentences for Whites convicted of the same or similar crimes. Much of this can be considered as a product of the disparity of justice in the Justice System. I live in Louisiana where I have learned from experience through close relations not just racial disparity but economic disparity in the Criminal Justice System. I honestly believe that here it is possible for someone with a lot of money to escape incarceration or worse for first degree murder. Unfortunately is is “Follow the Money.”

Social/Political Justice System

Disparity and unfairness in this system is not racist. There are everywhere daily examples of political and economic partisanship based solely on political and social standing. All one needs to do is watch, listen, and then chronicle examples of how hypocritical — especially on a national level — Political and Social Justice is processed. In just the past few months we have seen Hillary Clinton walk away unscathed from certain charges for violations of multiple federal laws pertaining to her handling and miss-handling of classified information and documents. Former FBI Director James Comey himself broke several laws by leaking information to a Columbia professor for the express purpose of informing the media of memos the Director prepared after meeting several times with President Trump. His leaking that information violated federal laws. In both of these cases it is highly doubtful either will face criminal penalties.

Other examples of such hypocrisy are the illegal unmasking of Americans’ identities for political purposes by National Security Advisor Susan Rice; former Attorney General Eric Holder ignoring a subpoena to appear before Congress to answer questions under oath for his involvement in the “Fast and Furious” debacle on the southern border; former Attorney General Loretta Lynch’s interference in the FBI investigation of Hillary Clinton by meeting with Bill Clinton, who himself was a subject of a purported FBI investigation at the time into improprieties of the Clinton Foundation. Her doing so violated federal statute as well as Justice Department directives against such conflict of interest.

There are multiple other such cases that are not specific to Party, political affiliation, or office, but most seem to be closely related to or as a direct or indirect result of which political party is in control in Washington D.C. Political Correctness seems to rule the Justice System leaning at the time. But Social/Political Justice is soiled in many of the same ways as the Criminal Justice System.

The Costs of these Injustices

Make no mistake: there is a price to be paid for each Criminal Justice System injustice. Who pays the price? In the case of racial injustice, it seems today that African American males are leading that list. And because of the disparity, many of their families are broken by incarceration. Every member of such a family is forced to deal without that male living in that social group. That man’s incarceration can only enforce in his mind and heart hard feelings of anger, hurt, and abandonment knowing there IS racial injustice at play — even when guilty of the crime. In Society there is very little more hurtful and permanently damaging than knowing simply because of racial disparity one is paying a much higher price than would be paid by a person guilty of identical infractions simply because of their race.

In the Social/Political Justice world the same holds true. Different sets of standards are confusing, unfair, unjust, but real. Knowing the differences and accepting those differences are two different things. Unfortunately, such happenings and their being commonplace for many years has conditioned a large part of the American population to accept these as normal rather than to confront the evil they bring to American individuals, families, and other social groups. Acceptance of these inequities serves to only lower the standards of Justice that were implicitly and emphatically detailed in the U.S. Constitution. Our ancestors emigrated from a society that not only allowed these same injustices, many embraced them. They lived in an environment that had to deal with the results of this acceptance, and they saw it tear their countries apart.

Thanks to the miracle of digital broadcasting, the internet, and the ease of mass communication, these injustices are chronicled daily through television, radio, internet, and print news. Thanks to the creation of Conservative radio and television news and talk shows, the “other” side of political and social injustices are being exposed after years of Americans seeing and hearing only one side of these incidents. No matter what the Mainstream Media think of Americans — Asian, Caucasian, Hispanic, or Black — most Americans when given facts are very capable to process facts and make right decisions.

Many politicians carry forward the same thinking of Mainstream Media and disregard how Americans feel about disparity in the Justice System. They are making mistakes. Leaders in the Asian, Hispanic, and Black communities are awakening to the facts of this disparity and are slowly but surely crafting methods to educate their communities to the real causes of these problems, and are recognizing there really is unfair but real disparity driven by race. But they now realize some of that disparity is driven by political correctness that has become embedded in the minds of those in minority communities.

Remember this: “You shall know the Truth and the Truth will set you free.”

 

 

 

The ONLY Fix for Healthcare That Will Work: Part 2

In Part 1 of this Analysis, we discussed the specific and integral parts of Healthcare Finance so all could understand the elements critical to making it work.  Let’s detail the “Fix” so we can get started:

Fee Schedule

  1. Medicare Part B has an existing fee schedule as does Medicaid. To “fix” healthcare finance, Congress needs to pass a law (enforced and administered through the CMS) requiring ALL insurance companies who wish to remain part of the Medicare Part B Reimbursement system to adopt a private insurance fee schedule that will parallel the Medicare Part B fee schedule long in existence, and agree to NOT balance bill policy holders for any amounts charged above the fee schedule amounts. (See the “Fee Schedule” detail section of Part 1 of this posted yesterday)
  2. Healthcare Providers will also agree to accept fee schedule payments from ALL insurance companies — Medicare, Medicaid, active and retired military and military family dependent payers, AND private insurance companies — as payment in full for their services and will not balance bill patients for amounts billed which are above the fee schedule allowable amounts.  (See “Fee Schedule” detail section of Part 1 of this posted yesterday)
  3. Hospitals which now are paid primarily under a Medicare Part A plan fee schedule (which is drastically different than Part B and we will not get into today) will be included in the CMS fee schedule requirement to continue to operate in the Medicare system. (Again see “Fee Schedule” detail section of Part 1 of this posted yesterday)
  4. Most out-patient providers are already involved in the Part B fee schedule system for government payers. They will also be required to adopt the private insurance fee schedule for payment for their services rendered under ALL payer policies.
  5. Drug companies will be required to enroll in a separate but similar fee schedule system created and administered by CMS as part of the same law passed by Congress.

Will Hospitals, Physicians, out-patient Providers, and Drug companies agree to these requirements?

Of course in the free market system a business typically has the right to set its own operating rules and guidelines, particularly as they pertain to pricing for their goods and services. However, Healthcare is a different and unique beast. There are currently existing issues from time to time with timely and accurate payment by the private insurance companies who are contracted with the Federal and State governments to be claim processors and claim payers for government insured individuals and also for their private insured policy holders. These primarily pertain to timely payment for provided services, accurate payment for provided services, and claim denials and the subsequent appeals process for providers. For this process to work, Congress and CMS would have to assure providers and require insurance companies that payments for ALL provider services will be paid within no more than 45 calendar days of receipt from providers by the insurance companies of accurate and complete coded bills and applicable medical treatment documentation sufficient to adjudicate the validity of each claim. Further, for denied claims, the appeals process for providers must be streamlined so as to resolve claim disputes with providers that provides resolution within 15 days of receipt of secondary data, documents, and/or information by the payer from the provider for each denial sufficient to determine treatment necessity.

Hospitals will balk and fight prolifically to stop implementation of such a system. Why? $$$$$ The billions they make now will be reduced initially. However, market forces of supply and demand in the competitive business environment will over a short time significantly reduce their costs of operations which will offset most of their initial revenue decrease. However, when a business has for years because of NO competition been able to price their goods and services at any prices they choose, they have been able to pile up profits with no regard for their “customers.” Unfairness and greed now drive the healthcare pricing model. Competition with open and public information about services will take care of that. The same holds true for Drug companies. Insured people will actually be able to check prices and know in advance what costs will be.

Guaranteed payment for medical services within these specific times will be mandatory for providers and insurance companies to agree to this system. Insurance companies currently operating as Medicare and Medicaid claims processors, payers, and administrators are handsomely compensated for their services under government contracts. But they all fight government red tape. The payment process to providers must immediately move up to #2 in the Healthcare Reimbursement pecking order barely behind the healthcare provided to patients. Healthcare professionals and institutions are required to obtain initial and continual significant education and certification in their respective fields. The costs to them for this are staggering as are costs for treating patients. Fair and timely compensation MUST be a priority.

Healthcare Lobbying

In today’s healthcare system, special interest groups continually drive the cost of medical services steadily upward. Those special interest groups are comprised of multiple non profits, lobbying firms and individuals, politicians, and attorneys — all who have built-in objectives for pushing for and against regulations in healthcare, healthcare provider issues, patient issues, facility issues, and even federal and state legal issues. Hospitals have lobbyists that lobby Congress for assistance.  Patients have lobbying entities that operate on their behalf like AARP and others that market their services for a price to their “members” — American citizens — who trust these and others to lobby Congress for their specific desires in healthcare. The AARP is one example of hundreds of lobbying entities whose lobbyists “get” face-time with government officials to “sell” their products, ideas, and concepts. Lobbying of Lawmakers and others on Capitol Hill for any and all issues concerning Healthcare Finance must immediately be terminated by law. The massive flow of lobbying dollars that go to influence lawmakers to make decisions on healthcare finance must be shut off. They alone have driven the costs of healthcare to astronomical levels over the last two decades.

Healthcare Tort Reform

This too must be immediately tackled as part of Healthcare Finance reform. We all see and hear the constant 60-second commercials by attorneys, “phishing” for clients as part of  “pending” Class Action lawsuits against pharmaceutical companies for complications attorneys claim occur from certain drugs. The same holds true for purported problems with certain medical devices and treatments. The common denominator of these is Litigation. Certainly there are times when litigation for some of these is justified and the responsible entities should be held accountable for harm to patients. But “phishing for clients” on radio, television, the internet, and print media, while occasionally will help a injured person who has no idea what to do, most often simply creates massive malpractice insurance premiums for healthcare providers of all kinds who are punished — not for their misdeeds, but for the greed of attorneys. Many of those attorneys often are not as deeply concerned as it may appear for the injured persons they are trying to reach in those ads. Often they will file suits with no plan to litigate and take a provider or insurance company to trial. They know the cost of litigating a case is high. They will offer to settle, knowing that those they sue understand the costs and will pay up front rather than finance a trial — even when those providers and/or insurance companies know they are right.

How do we fix Tort Reform? By a law, (that does not impact the injured) that sets damages that can be collected from such a lawsuit at “actual damages” with no “punitive damages” paid above “actual.” In fact, some states already have those laws in place. This will pay those injured fairly, but will only pay attorneys legitimate amounts for their services. This in itself will stop much of the senseless and often unethical litigation that has driven the cost of healthcare dramatically higher. And in most of these cases, the attorneys are the only winners, eating up huge percentages of settlement amounts instead of those injured.

What do we do about Medicaid funding?

Simple: for medical treatment providers must accept Medicaid fee schedule payments from insurance companies. But the overall funding of Medicaid must go back to the strict combination of Federal and State funding through block grants. States need to be responsible for their Medicaid patient treatments and provider payments. What needs to change immediately is “Means Testing” for Medicaid coverage. The current system for eligibility is broken. Example: a man and a woman live together but never marry. They have children. Because they are not married, even though he works as does she, if she applies for Medicaid they are immediately covered because eligibility is computed using solely her income but NOT his. The process must be revised based on REAL financial needs rather than social obligation (which is promoted by Democrat Party social politics). If someone truly needs coverage because of income and obligations, it will be provided.

What About Pre-existing Conditions?

The cost for treatment of those in this category will dramatically drop with the institution of the fee schedule system. However, a fund exclusively for this coverage must be created to begin coverage at implementation of this system. Because there is no way to accurately predict what those costs will be, this fund will have to be flexible. One suggestion for the source of funding is to use the billions of dollars collected by the federal government as fines and settlements from corporations and other entities for various violations of regulations and laws. Examples of this are the billions of dollars banks have paid for improprieties in mortgages and breaking other banking laws, chemical companies for environment regulation violations and others that most often under the Obama Administration have been paid to partisan non profit organizations as partisan campaign seeding and “payback” for political support. (This would be another way to “follow the money” in political campaign contributions)

Summary

Without this or a similar Healthcare financial overhaul that protects actual healthcare and providers, America will soon be a socialist third-world country — at least in Healthcare. Americans do not deserve that. But any such overhaul will not happen without the stopping of people and entities with their hands in the pockets of Uncle Sam.  They are taking Americans’ dollars for corporate, personal, and political purposes that are earmarked for the health and welfare of American citizens. The greatest healthcare system in the World does NOT need to be blown up. Healthcare finance does, using the skeleton of the government/private funding system that is already in place and has worked with dramatic and positive results for decades.

Who can get this done? That’s the big question. The answer? Only Americans who activate themselves and others to educate friends, relatives, business associates, and political representatives to the concept, then push to get it done. There MUST be demands for legislators to immediately instigate the legislation mentioned above (and any other necessary) to stop the lobbying in Healthcare while initiating the laws necessary to structure compliance obligations from facilities, providers, and insurance companies to operate in this scenario. Tort reform goes hand in hand with lobbying termination. It CAN be done. But it will NOT just happen.

Please forward yesterday’s Part 1 and today’s Part 2 of this: “The Only Fix for Healthcare that WILL Work.”

 

 

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