Monday, July 27, 2009

Call to Action Notes for Tonight’s Mtg

A Call to Action: Pray/Process/Participate/Persevere

Remember: There are FOUR branches of Govt – Legislative, Executive, Judicial, and WE THE PEOPLE! A homeschool legal group – but great political info available for all, including non-members and (can get info on your Congressmen/Senators, as well as others)

1-202-224-3121 Capital Switchboard (can contact any Congressmen/Senators through this)

    I have this number on speed dial on my cell phone! and (can find info on specific bills, track specific congressmen and bills, etc.) and and (leading the fight against abortion) Can see live debates/discussions in Congress and more…     (Great place to see speeches various elected officials are giving, from CSPAN, etc.) Can sign up for their newsletter email list for local TEA Party info (Taxed Enough Already) (American Political Action Committee) – good source of conservative information             (my favorite source of news/info) (my favorite way to keep up w/twitter)

(Where you can tweet me at: cmmjaime)

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Stop Abortion Mandate Webcast

I listened to the Stop Abortion Mandate Webcast, 23 July for almost 2 hours. It was encouraging and discouraging at the same time. I took notes during the webcast, and have included highlights from the speakers. (The emphasized portions are my emphasis.) More information on this vital work can be found at:

I was a couple of minutes late getting on, due to difficulty logging in at the same time as almost 35,000 other concerned Americans. I got in just in time to hear someone explain that the current Health Care Bill could be called the "Planned Parenthood Bailout Bill", and then to point out that "Every American should be concerned…if not outraged…" If this bill passes in anything even resembling the current legislation, taxpayer dollars will be used to fund abortions while other services are being cut…Planned Parenthood is already included in the Senate version of HC bill…

One speaker pointed out that "There is no denying there are problems in the Health Care delivery system…but government takeover is not the answer."

"Phone calls ARE having an effect…Keep the calls, cards, letters coming."


There must be an abortion exclusion in the Bill – or Abortion will be included (and will be funded!) Americans have been continually asked to fund "abortion on demand"

1.    Politically appointed bureaucrats have always filled in the blanks (like Obama's "Health Advisory Committee"), 2008 Candidate Obama made it clear that benefits should include abortions…

2.    4,000 unborn die daily… Why is Obama pushing for increased funding of abortions when more than 70% of Americans oppose. Answer: "He is a true believer"…He equates abortions to having a tonsillectomy…

    DR. JAMES DOBSON, Focus on the Family:

"You've been hearing a lot about Health Care Reform lately…but not hearing about taxpayer funded abortions included in the bill." The Health Care Bill will force taxpayers to pay for abortions…Almost every American will be forced into a plan that pays for abortions…How dare the Congress and the President try to force this legislation on people of conscience?...Many of our elected officials and our President are anxious to make it happen…Call your senators and representatives as soon as possible…Please join me praying that God will intervene…and will have mercy on our Nation and on our pre-born babies."

    DOUGLAS JOHNSON, National Right to Life Committee:

"The pro-abortion forces have been working towards this day for years…This bill would be a platform to extend abortion to all women…Some advocates complain that there are not enough abortions…At least 1 million Americans are alive because of the Hyde amendment…Congress is pushing that every healthcare plan must include 'essential care'…which will include abortions…Do not depend on the Mainstream Media for information…Congressman Tim Ryan of Ohio was allowed to misrepresent the content of the bill and our opposition to it…"

    FR. FRANK PAVONE, Priests for Life:

"If abortion is not specifically excluded in the Health Care bill…this will be the largest expansion of abortion since Roe vs. Wade…How? The fact of the matter is that the Supreme Court has significantly weakened Roe since then, as have some state legislations…One of the goals with this bill is to increase the ease with which abortions are performed and funded…Almost 2/3 of abortion mills have been closed since their height…Abortion being considered an essential health benefit will be funded in a way never been before…AND this will take away rights of providers not to perform them…The Abortion industry is hopeful that Health Care Reform will…this is their last ditch effort…

WENDY WRIGHT, Concerned Women for America:

"…the deceptive language that is already in this bill…we need to be wise as serpents when dealing with the Obama administration…It is NOT their goal to reduce abortions…Obama: 'Let's not get distracted by the abortion debate'…400 activists at the summit…Obama is committed to ensuring the abortion mandate is in the Health Care bill."

The word abortion is not in the bill, but that doesn't mean the bill won't increase funding for them…It is Legislation with deceptive language…It would hand over power to define and decide what will be covered…Who will decide?...Bill proposed this week claims to reduce abortions, will actually increase abortions…One main reason to oppose this bill: It will empower bureaucrats to decide who will get what treatment – who will live and who will die

    TOM MINNERY, Focus on the Family:

"Just after Obama was elected, Planned Parenthood and other groups gave him a wish list of what they want…They will reap the benefits of our tax dollars…Candidate Obama claimed he 'wanted to make abortion very rare'…but whatever is subsidized will expand…So this will cause more abortions…Congressman Mike Pence of Indiana proposed an amendment to ensure that Planned Parenthood shouldn't receive ANY federal money because of this bill. (The amendment failed on Friday, July 24)...34% of Planned Parenthood's income last year was from the government…

    KRISTEN DAY, Democrats for Life:

"This bill must include language which prevents money from going to fund abortions…There are at least 39 Democrats in the House who plan to vote against if bill includes abortion funding…"

CONGRESSMAN CHRIS SMITH, U.S. House of Representatives (from NJ):

"Some in Congress are trying to cobble together a phony compromise about abortion…Don't believe that Obama wants to reduce abortions…Please, Mr. President, give me a break…Pro-life amendment would bar funding for abortions…so far has lost in every committee vote…We will persist in spite of those losses…Both Pro-life amendments are straightforward…Passing airtight language is paramount…The potential for deceit is high, and we must guard against it…This is the big one!...Not since Roe v Wade have our children and our Moms been more at risk!"

Another speaker (I missed the name):

"The goal of the pro-choice movement is to include abortion in this bill…This is the big one!...We've got to do ALL the things mentioned in the handout…We need to confront our Congressmen and Senators during recess…Write a hand-written letter to each of them – put on it "hand-delivered"—and then take to their district offices…NO ABORTION in health care or health insurance funded by our money…"

KRISTAN HAWKINS, Students for Life of America:

"How would these bills ration care…This bill rations care, especially for those with special needs…Obama said in May 'the chronically ill, and those towards the end of their lives are counting for 80% of our health care bills…' Health care will be rationed for people like my son because he is less valued…A nationalized health care system will mean the difference between life and death…shows us the culture of death we have arrived at…Please join us in calling and visiting Congressional members…demanding that Health Care Reform not use federal dollars to…We must speak for those among us who cannot speak for themselves…"

    CONGRESSMAN JOE PITTS, U.S. House of Representatives (Pennsylvania):

"Will force us to subsidize abortions with taxpayer dollars…the biggest fight for life in decades…Two amendments have been proposed to Energy and Commerce (already turned down in 2 committees) – last chance to amend the bill before it hits the House floor…20 Democrats have sent a letter to Pelosi saying they will NOT support the bill unless it excludes Abortion!...we must speak out before it is too late…Abortion is NOT health care…Health Care is about saving life…Want to see an explicit exclusion of Abortion in any health care plan."

PEGGY HARTSHORN, Heartbeat International:

"The research arm of Planned Parenthood says abortions will increase by 30% if funded by government….Pro-life medical folks may have to stop practicing medicine because of the requirements to do or recommend abortions…Fear for women, and men, and babies…Abortion mandate is an assault on human dignity…"


"America is becoming more pro-life…Mandated coverage by Medicare would result in at least 30% increase in abortions, probably more…We want to reach abortion-vulnerable and abortion-minded women…If abortions are provided free of charge…what will that do this most at risk population…The lack of protection for right of conscience…When we lose those state laws, and we will lose them under this bill, we will lose a window of opportunity…"

JIM SEDLAK, American Life League / STOPP:

"Planned Parenthood is in a fight for their survival…Operators of largest abortion chain in the nation…They will be on the sidelines if they don't get abortion in this bill…Last Thursday they had a tremendous force meeting in D.C….did get themselves written into the Senate version…Another bill making its way through Congress this week…opportunity to let our representatives know that Planned Parenthood is NOT Wanted!...No money in this bill to be used by PP for any purpose….Up or down vote tomorrow on the House floor…Contact members of House tonight and tomorrow…want them to support Pence amendment (part of Health & Services)…take all $ away from PP (The Pence amendment failed the next day.)

We have to ACT!

DAY GARDNER, National Black Pro-Life Union

"…It is especially important to the black community…1939 "The Negro Project" – "get rid of black people" through abortion and sterilization…Killing centers are still purposely placed in minority areas…Abortion is the number one killer of black people in America!...Why do our taxpayer dollars go to support this racist organization?..."

CARMEN PATE, Point of View Radio Show

Bishop Jackson:

"Abortions will continue to soar…if action is not taken…Hope must be kept alive…Keep hope alive!"

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Menendez on Health Insurance Companies

I watched Senator Menendez' Briefing on Health Insurance Companies this evening. I wasn't sure which side of the Health Care "Reform" issue he was on until I started watching the you tube video...It was a pretty good guess right at the beginning that he wanted the government to get involved, when he's standing there with a big chart next to him showing "Health Insurance Profits" from 2000-2007. I guess the chart was showing that they had made a 428% increase during that time, and something about $32.9 billion, though I never heard him address it, or its "facts", specifically.

Senator Menendez starts right out letting us know that "Truman understood the meaning of community...that we have obligations to each other to be part of the solution." Senator Menendez, the government is NOT community. If we have an obligation to each other it is as citizens who are part of that community, not the government interfering with that community.

Then the Senator spoke harshly of Private Insurance Companies and the fact that they "use their 'market power' to boost their bottom line...." ....As if such a thing is such a condemnation...

Then he points out that it is necessary for "insurance companies to be...more responsive to their policy holders." It made me think of our representatives in Congress, and how responsive most of them are NOT!

Senator Menendez then reassured us (or at least tried to) that the "public option is to drive competition" (as opposed to drive out competition...not seeing how that would work out, sorry!)

And he ended by stating that "If you like what you have, you get to keep it." I see. But of course he fails to tell us that page 16 of the 1000+ page bill currently in the House makes it fairly clear that we may be able to keep what we have, if we have it when all this starts, but don't count on getting something new after that, at least not from outside the Government. Did you miss that part, Senator Menendez, or did you not think we needed to know that?

Friday, July 10, 2009

More on Health Care

In the midst of all that is being said about the sad state of Health Care in our country, it's nice to know that there are still reasonable articles being written about its true state:

10 Surprising Facts about American Health Care

In spite of its title, I didn't find the facts contained in it surprising at all!

Herman Cain and Health Care issues

There are a growing number of articles on what's wrong with the Government taking over Health Care.

Two from Herman Cain, one explaining the problems with the current plans:
Five Traps That Trick Americans Into Accepting Socialized Medicine

and another suggesting REAL improvements to it:
Seven Ways to Make Health Care in America Better

We have to keep those in D.C. from continuing to enlarge their power at our expense!
Just as true today as it was in 1822:

"Knowledge will forever govern ignorance and a people who mean to be their own governors must arm themselves with the Power which knowledge gives."

James Madison in letter to W.T. Barry

Join Us for the July 17th Nationwide Protest

For those in the greater Huntsville area, Christie says:

"July 17th Nationwide Protest -- Protesting Nationalized Health
Insurance and the Cap & Trade bill. President Obama wants the
nationalized health insurance bill passed through the House by August,
and Cap & Trade (HR 2454) is on its way to the Senate for final
passage. Two bills that would put us in much greater debt, devestate
private businesses, and worsen our recession. We are still working on
the permit, but for now are tentatively meeting where we did for the
Tax Day Tea Party (across the street from the post office on Clinton
Ave) from 12:00pm - 1:00pm. Please come out and join us! These are two
of the most dangerous bills our Congress has ever voted on and we must
show our opposition! This protest is geared toward local congressional
offices around the country. However, as there is not enough room for
all of us to protest in front of Parker Griffith's office we have
chosen this location, which is actually quite close. Griffith's office
is just on the other side of the Parkway at 2101 Clinton Ave. If you
are coming, bring a letter to Parker Griffith! We will be personally
delivering them afterward! If you are unable to stand with us for the
entire time, stop by and drop your letter off so we can deliver it! If
you are unable to drive by, call/fax/email him!§iontree=4 Griffith
voted against Cap & Trade, but stated at a recent Health Care Town
Hall that he 1) thinks health care is a right and 2) thinks we are
past adhering to the Constitution. This time you'll be parking on Lot
K, where we met for the Tax Day Tea Party. I'll let you know when our
permit goes through. Bring your signs!!!"

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Health Care -- Private versus the Government

In case anyone is sleeping through the current wave of legislative nightmares working their way through our Congress -- the Federal Government is trying again to socialize our medicine. HillaryCare on steroids = ObamaCare, and it is not a pretty sight.

I will attempt to collect some various articles, youtubes, etc. and post here for those who want/need Health Care information at their fingertips. And if you haven't already done it -- put the Capitol Switchboard # on your speed dial -- these folks work for us -- and they need to hear from us: 202-224-3121.


A great starting point is a Wall Street Journal article from July 1,
Parsing the Health Reform Arguments

And another one from the Opinion section of July 7: Of NICE and Men


There'a a petition about Health Care.


And here is a summary of Democrat Health “Reform” by the Numbers


Congressman Blunt spoke briefly about Health Care this morning:


And Senator DeMint sent out the following "Freedom Alert" today:
July 08, 2009
Dear Friend,

In many ways, our health care system is broken. Even people satisfied with their own care are nervous about losing it, concerned about rising costs, and frustrated by the failure of government to bring about genuine reform. But the reason Congress has so far been unable to fix our health care problems is that Congress is too busy creating the problems in the first place. That’s why the current proposals emanating from the White House and congressional Democrats won’t work either. Those proposals would hand over the most personal, private undertaking of our lives -- health care -- to the most impersonal, inefficient, and broken system in our society -- the federal bureaucracy.

These programs will only grow government, limit options, encourage waste and abuse, and ultimately lead to rationing of health care by bureaucrats and politicians in Washington. If you’ve ever wondered if there might be a better way, then my new Health Care Freedom Plan might be for you.

The plan, which I introduced last month in the Senate, is the opposite of a government takeover like HillaryCare in 1994 or ObamaCare this year. It does not force any American off of their current plan, but provides them with the ability to access and own a health plan that best meets his or her needs. Compared to the Democrats’ plan, my bill will cover more uninsured Americans, in half the time, at no cost because it will be paid for entirely by terminating the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP) and reclaiming the Wall Street bailout funds over the next five years.

Here’s how it works:

My plan puts individuals back in control of their health care decisions by offering every American a health care voucher -- worth $2,000 for individuals and $5,000 for families -- to purchase a plan that best works for them. It doesn’t force anyone who likes their employer-sponsored health care to leave it. If you like your current plan, you can keep it. If you don’t have insurance, or if you do have insurance but might want to shop around, you can claim the voucher. My plan finally allows comparable tax benefits for those without employer-sponsored care, like small business workers and the self-employed.

The plan also breaks down barriers and creates a nationwide insurance market that doesn’t restrict individuals from purchasing insurance plans in other states. It also allows greater flexibility to use Health Savings Accounts (HSAs) to pay for insurance premiums.

To bring down overall health care costs, my bill reduces predatory malpractice lawsuits against physicians and hospitals and brings more transparency to the industry by requiring that true costs of health care are disclosed before patients receive treatment. My plan also ensures that Americans with pre-existing health conditions would be provided access to affordable coverage through federal block grant funding of state high-risk projects.

Americans should have access to health insurance that they can afford, own, and keep -- and that the government can never take over or take away. The Health Care Freedom Plan guarantees every American’s freedom to choose and own a plan that is best for them. You can rest assured that I will continue to fight for real reforms that allow Americans to regain control of their health care choices.


And if you want to get in on the debate, the Republicans have a "Senate Doctors" site where they are seeking questions to answer about Health Care.

Monday, July 6, 2009

Town Hall Meeting vs TEA Party

I sent the following letter to the editor in to my local newspaper today about the political events I attended last week. Time will tell whether they print this one or not. (They printed a letter I sent in in January about their awful coverage of Home Births, and they didn't print the one I sent in in April about CPSIA.)

This was a very political week for me. On Tuesday I attended a fundraiser for the next District 6 Congressman, Phil Williams; On Thursday I attended a Town Hall Meeting on Health Care put on by our U.S. Congressman Parker Griffith, and on Saturday I attended the Huntsville TEA Party. Needless to say they were very different events.

It was shocking to see how many folks Thursday evening supported Griffith and others in the idea of allowing the government to meddle in the greatest Health Care system in the World. The pleas for Congress to go to a “Single Payer” system shocked me.

On the other hand it was exciting to see 5,000 other concerned citizens from the greater Huntsville area at the TEA Party. It was not a protest; it was a gathering; an assembly; an opportunity to express our frustrations with a government that has gotten out of control at multiple levels. We want our government to return to its true role in our lives – as a government of the people and for the people.
Contrary to the voices of a few on Thursday, we do not need a Nanny State. We are adults. We are ready and willing to make decisions for ourselves. We want those in our government to abide by the law of the land, the U.S. Constitution, no more and no less.

(Footnote -- They did print the editorial in the opinion section of the paper on 8 July, under the heading "Rein in Government")

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Notes from our Independence Day TEA Party

I did not try to send tweets during the Thursday evening Town Hall Meeting, I just took notes and came home and tweeted afterwards. But during the TEA Party, I sent tweets. (44 to be exact.) I decided there were advantages and disadvantages to both.

We were late to the TEA Party in April, so we did a better job this time of getting here early. There are probably only a few hundred folks here already when we arrive (nowhere near the 5,000 or so that will be here during the event). We set up our chairs, get a bite to eat and take in the crowd and signs around us. There are several great signs to be seen, including: "No Trap and Raid" "How is Change Working for you?" "Don't spread my wealth, spread my work ethic"

Then the Band starts – nothing against them, but Christie, if we do this again, can we get a Band that plays patriotic music? Please!

After the band, Christie opens the ceremonies by reading from the Declaration of Independence; moving words at any time, but especially during this event.

Christie asks what our Government is guilty of, and suggests we look at the Preamble to the Constitution and the 10th Amendment. (I think those are missing sections of the Constitutions in Washington, D.C.) Then she mentions Cap&Tax (there are boos from the audience), Socialized Medicine (more boos), and the fact that Congress votes on bills they haven't read (even more boos). She ends with a shout of "God bless America" and gets a standing ovation. The evening is off to a good start. Then we are all happy to stand for the posting of the colors, the Pledge of Allegiance, and the Star Spangled Banner.

We welcome the first speaker, Roger Richardson: "It is a joy to be here tonight to celebrate the birth of our nation…We are not here because we hate America. We are here because we LOVE America…We LOVE freedom...We want future generations to have more freedom…and more rights...not less."

Richardson asks: "Do you believe government should be running car companies? banks? passing Cap&Trade?" There are resounding "No's" after each question! He finishes by telling us "A Minister wrote 'My Country 'Tis of Thee' for such a time as this."

The next speaker, Mary Scott Hunter, is a local attorney and veteran. She speaks of "...Liberty...working hard and achieving goals." She says she is "scared of the spending spree Government is on… Government mandated 'gifts' rob the giver and the recipients... Education is absolutely essential...I got here because of choices I made and my family made... We have to make ourselves heard through movements like this, and we need to educate our kids... Resist the expansion of government; in a country with representative government, participation is mandatory!"

Our next speaker, Rachel Gray, is a young college student. She starts with "Good evening fellow domestic terrorists...Nice to see you peaceably assemble again!" Then she asks "How are we going to defend our personal liberties? Put the power back in our hands in 2010...Young Conservatives...stay strong...Persevere...Stop apologizing for America..."

Les Phillips, one of our candidates for US Congress for next year was our next speaker: "Regardless of what the media says, we are not alone…I have no tolerance for anyone who enters the country illegally (my parents waited 3 yrs for their visa)… The Constitution is the law of the land...At 18 I took an oath to defend this country against enemies domestic and foreign...I took an oath to defend the Constitution, not to defend a politician… What's different about us is that this country was founded on God…Stand up to liberals, enough is enough… Our political leaders underestimate us today...We need to stand strong!"

Then Mo Brooks, our MC for the night, came back up on stage: "Mr. President, the United States is not arrogant...Stop apologizing for our heroes."

Our next speaker, Sergy Braylyan, lived in Russia for many years; he has been to many different "tea parties", usually discussing politics! "I took my 1st breathe in USSR...My Mom watched many other women die of infections in that hospital...I have used medical services in 4 different countries...By far...the best in the world is here in the US…There is a lot of talking care is too costly...In Soviet Union we gave away our freedom completely...If you went to the hospital for any problem...turned down...or have to bring your own medications...long waits for any treatment..." He ended by reminding us that "Utopia, the road to socialism, is the road to nowhere."

Linda Lawrence has been leading the charge against the Federal Government's takeover of housing in South Huntsville. "Our government is thumbing its nose at the Constitution...and subjecting us to an experiment of Socialism...but Socialism NEVER works…Socialism is unsustainable...they are using Socialism to create more dependencies..."

Our last speaker, Vince Croyl, finally came up: "No matter what Obama is doing in DC, no matter what Pelosi is doing...I'm proud to be an American!" He went on to make the valid point that "Socialized medicine will have the efficiency of the Department of Motor Vehicles and the compassion of the IRS!"

After almost two hours of speeches, our MC came back up to end the evening with "Let's Take America Back". A long evening, but all in all, a good way to celebrate the birth of our Country!


And my final thoughts that evening, in response to a text one of my kids sent me, "Yes, Happy Birthday America: 233 candles on the cake. May she survive to see many more birthdays."

Parker Griffith and Our Health Care

I started the week attending a very positive, enjoyable event for Phil Williams. Then on Thursday evening I attended my first Town Hall Meeting with our U.S. Congressman Parker Griffith: "A Healthy Alabama is a Prosperous Alabama". It was co-hosted by two groups I hadn't heard of: Alabama Appleseed's Health Insurance Project and Arise Citizens Policy Project. I don't know anything about the two groups, but if they were happy about how the event unfolded, it would speak volumes about them; to me, that night was as depressing as Tuesday night had been uplifting.


On Wednesday evening I did some more research on Health Care, in preparation for the Meeting. I already know where I stand on it, but I wanted to have more facts. A great article on Health Care came out in the Wall Street Journal on July 1: "Parsing the Health Reform Arguments" ( The author does a great job of summing up the arguments against the Government messing around with Health Care. I strongly recommend it for anyone who wants to understand the arguments being made.


While I was doing my research, I ran across references to the Arizona Health Care Freedom Act. More attention will definitely need to be paid to that...It looks like Arizona may be the first state to pass its own law saying they don't have to participate in whatever disaster the Federal Government comes up with for Health Care.


As the meeting Thursday evening was about to begin, I listed the points that I would want to have made about Health Care:

1) Our system brings Medical Innovations like no other in the world.

2) The system being proposed in Congress leads to long waits and rationing.

3) Even if it doesn't begin as a Government Monopoly, it ends that way because Private Companies won't be able to compete.

4) And most importantly, it is Unconstitutional. There is no way to construe anything in the Constitution as giving the Federal Government the right to deal in any way with Health Care!


After he was introduced, Congressman Griffith gave his overview. He said that there is a general feeling among businesses, the AMA, and the population as a whole that our Health Care system needs to be improved. Really? Interesting, since most folks I know understand our Health Care system to be the greatest in the world!)


He spoke of our 233-year Democracy, and something about not living up to its ideals. I knew we were in trouble then. Especially when Griffith followed it up with a comment about 47 million Americans being uninsured or not having access to Health Care. That is when I really wanted to scream. Note for Parker Griffith and those who think like him: Not having Health Insurance is not the same thing as not having access to Health Care! Five of my older children are currently uninsured. They all have access to Health Care.


And yet Griffith went on to admit that deaths from Cardio Disease and deaths from cancers (besides smoking related) have gone down. What, in our failing medical situation, how could that be?


He spoke of the options: A single payer (everyone in the U.S. has the same Insurance card -- Medicare-like). Why would anyone want a system like that?!?
Or where we just ADD Govt Health Care option to existing options since "some" of us are actually satisfied with our existing insurance, we would get to keep ours -- at least until the Govt drove our companies out of business. It wasn't clear to me that either of those were good options, but a small portion of the audience seemed to thing they were.


Griffith went on to say that "We want everyone to have access at a reasonable cost, quality, choice..." Wish we could have asked him right then when the Federal Govt became Santa Clause and how we were going to pay for such offerings.


Then Griffith talked about trying to reform a system around a shortage; in this case a shortage of Physicians. What part of this program does he really think will lessen the shortage of Physicians?


Then the ground rules were set and the floor was opened for questions.

  1. An older gentleman right in front of us asked Congressman Griffith right away where in the Constitution the Government has the right to provide Health Care. Parker Griffith tried to put the gentleman on the defensive by asking him if he was on Medicare. Griffith wasn't happy when he got a Negative answer from the gentleman, who persisted in asking Griffith to "follow his oath". We could have ended the evening right there and I would have been happy…Very few of the questions that came after this one were worth listening to.
  2. Now the complaints began: "Prescriptions in the U.S. cost $50, in Europe they are the equivalent of $5…How can the Government do worse than Private Industry…We need Single Payer…" I personally think that the Government can do MUCH worse than what we currently have, but pray we will never find out!
  3. Next complaint came quickly: "Policies today are too complicated" Griffith quickly comments, "We have lots of Single Payers here"
    (Really, he was able to determine that by two questions. Amazing.)
  4. Another Conservative finally got a question in: "When Medicare was started in 1965 they predicted the cost would be $12 million. By 1990 the cost had exceeded 98 million." Not much Griffith could say to that, so he didn't say much.
  5. A sad story about a 29-year-old sister who's insurance lapsed through no fault of her own. (A bad situation, but socializing Health Care is not the answer.)
  6. A small business owner shared his frustrations about not being able to compete with big businesses for Health Care plans. (Must be an answer to this besides the ones being suggested.)
  7. The point was made that the quality of care of Dialysis patients on Medicare is much worse than those of commercially insured patients. Like most of the questioners here tonight, it wasn't clear if they actually had a question for the Congressman, or just wanted to make a statement. At this point Griffith took the opportunity to point out that a child with appendicitis is five times more likely to die if has no insurance.
  8. The point was made that Medicaid should reimburse for prenatal care…And then that infant mortality is so bad in the United States. (Sorry, don't buy that statistic at all.) Parker Griffith used this opportunity to point out the big problem we have in this country of the distribution of doctors. Really?Again, how will socializing Health Care fix anything?
  9. Another sad story – but this one was from a small businesswoman whose husband had been in a really bad car accident. She was very thankful that the hospital's main emphasis was on saving his life - -and pondered whether that would have happened if they didn't have insurance. Griffith pointed out that the unique thing about OUR system is that we are making advances…we see whoever in the Emergency Room…(So why do we want to want to change this great system?)
  10. The next gentleman went on and on and on (people started yelling "What is the question?"). After Griffith asked, "Would you like to ask me a question," he finally got to saying something about regulatory issues in medicine being a big joke. We moved on finally…
  11. Now someone complained about going to the Emergency Room and how bad it was there, and how he spent 4 hours waiting to see a Doctor. And yet somehow he was convinced that nationalizing Health Care would somehow be an improvement!
  12. Someone got up and pointed out that a Government Option would compete with private insurers. Then asked Griffith bluntly, "Do you support a Government option?" Griffith was not straightforward with his answer, "We don't want unintended consequences." (Really, Congress actually thinks about unintended consequences? That would be a nice change!) And then he actually made two more reasonable comments: "If Government Care equals Medicare, we will be destroying." And "The public option is okay, if we have level playing field." He was quite accurate in that second comment, and since we'll never be able to level the playing field – I would like to take his third comment to mean we can't do it! (Though I'm sure that's not what he meant.)
  13. A real question finally – "Recently President Obama appeared before the AMA and said he doesn't support Tort Reform" (The audience booed!) "What is your position on Tort Reform?" Griffith had a great non-answer, "Tort Reform and Distribution haven't been addressed in current bills." Moments later he made another couple of interesting comments, "We may be promising people something we can't provide"
    (You think!) and "…These are not easy decisions…."
  14. More of a comment than a question: "You Republicans are selfish, you want roads…water…but no taxes."
  15. Another good question snuck in: "How can private companies compete with the Government…Maine and Massachusetts have tried public options and failed, how can the federal government do better?" I know, I know, they can't! Griffith mentions his own efforts with Health Care, "I am introducing legislation to say that any Health Care bill as to be on our desks one week in advance of the vote." (Why isn't that the case for ALL major legislation?!?) and "Whatever legislation we pass for Health Care for the Country, we will have to have the same care. (Can we all say, "Yeah, right!)
  16. "Insurance companies have to earn profit on each patient enrolled…" (and he went on and on and on) He finally got to a point. "You can't force everyone to buy insurance – or the government will have to subsidize those who can't/don't." Griffith pointed out that the expected cost will be between $1 – 2 Trillion. (And remember, that's expected costs!) And then the questioner pointed out that a Single Payer is a better solution, but that Griffith is not supporting it because it isn't politically feasible. Griffith pointed out that the Single Payer in the bill is NOT better! But the concept of eliminating administrative costs is good!
  17. An employee of a small company pointed out that he can't afford his company's insurance. How will we lower our costs without putting for profit insurance companies out of business? The answer to this question was not an answer, "Big pharmaceuticals need to be regulated."
    (Yeah, we all know how effective Govt regulations have been in other areas!) And "the Health Care Industry is the largest industry in America." (And this is before the Government takes over!)
  18. Good question: How do we convince Insurance Companies to reimburse Nurse Practioners, PA's, etc. Good question, no answer.
  19. The United States is built on free trade and capitalism. We can't we regulate these problems away? (Yeah, I got lost with that argument too!) Griffith just went on to make an unrelated statement: "I disagree with President Obama on 30-45 day timetable on something so critical as Health Care."
    Okay, we can agree on that position! And then he went on to say that "Competition is good".
    (We agree on that too – so how do we go from that to socializing medicine? Got me!)
  20. Then we got the guy who wanted to say that "Health Care is a right in so many countries…" Griffith said, "There are many improvements that we could make." To which someone yelled, we "Have to go to Single Payer option!" Really? And how will that improve anything? I was particularly disturbed by Griffith's next statement, "Health Insurance is a right."
  21. The next questioner complained that the Insurance Company is making the decisions.
    Griffith's next statement was interesting in light of his positions: "Medicare is a form of Single Payer, and it reduces your choices."
  22. Some good questions came up from the next person: "So many foreigners come to our shores for health care, where will we go…How will we pay for this?...Government Health Care is limited for older folks in other countries…." Interesting response from Griffith to these questions: "We're asking Congress to reform Health Care, and Congress has less than a 25% approval rating."
  23. Next questioner mentioned that we're trying to force everyone through a Cadillac Health Care system…Why not try a free market?
  24. With current layoffs, joblessness, the loss of Health Care to the forefront…Griffith mentions that we need to fix Medicare/Medicaid fraud.
  25. How can we trust that Congress will do the right thing on this – when so many in Congress are taking money from Pharmacies and Insurance Companies? Interesting answer: "Everyone is a special interest…trying to influence Congress for a vote…we have to be savvy enough and try to make decisions on what is best for MOST of the people." Questioner then makes the claim that "60% of Americans want Single Payer and 83% favor a Government Option." (Where do people get those types of statistics from?)
  26. A college student with an immune disorder has great insurance now, but worries about being dropped in the future. Griffith responds that he wants reforms so that "Every American has access and has insurance." (There we go with the access = insurance nonsense.)
  27. Next person claims that we "All know that the system is broke." And that "Canada has a pretty good system".
  28. Good response from the next person. "Let me throw some caution in here. I've lived under Canada's single payer system for 8 years…Our primary care was good, but I was glad that nothing unusual happened to me during that time. There was 1 MRI Machine for the over 4 million in the entire city of Toronto. We need stop gap coverage for people between jobs, etc. We are the medical treatment country of last resort for Canada.
  29. Our last question for the evening ended with "Do you believe illegals should be entitled to our Health Care?" Griffith answered with an emphatic "No" and then caveated that "Problem is, every child born in the USA is a US citizen".

And with that, a very painful evening of "questions" and "answers" came to an end.

Phil Williams -- Alabama District 6

I have really gotten behind on posts to this blog this summer -- for a combination of reasons. But it is not because I have been thinking less of my Civic Duty. In fact, I have done more as a civics-minded citizen during the last couple of months than I normally do.

A friend of mine introduced me to Phil Williams, the Conservative who is running in a special election for Alabama Congressman from our district. I have now been to and/or hosted 3 events for Mr. Williams. If he is elected he will bring the number of Republicans in the Alabama House up to 44, almost half, for the first time in a very long time. From everything I have seen and heard, I believe he will do a great job.

On Monday, we went to a fund raiser for Phil at the Botanical Gardens. It was great to be in a room with over 200 like-minded people from our area. Governor Riley spoke highly of Phil, and looks forward to Phil joining him from Montgomery. One of the points Gov. Riley made was that Phil Williams understands business (which is sadly, unusual for someone running for public office). The Governor sees this election as a great opportunity for this area, and I have to agree with him.

Then Phil addressed us for a few minutes: "I'm so proud to be from Alabama... Everything great that's happened to me has been in Alabama..."

And he wisely noted, "We need to be prepared for a storm...get out of debt...Get to know your elected officials now (get ready for 2010).

If you are in Alabama District 6, get out and vote for Phil Williams on July 14. It is a special election, only for this position, so it is critical that we take the time to vote that day.

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Shakespeare quotes for Independence Day

I just posted these quotes on my new Shakespeare blog, but thought they would be appropriate here as well:

Shakespeare quotes for Independence Day:

"Let's all cry peace, freedom, and liberty!" Julius Caesar

"I am a foe to tyrants, and my country's friend."Julius Caesar

"Who is here so vile that will not love his country?" Julius Caesar

"Having my freedom, boast of nothing else."Richard II

"This liberty is all that I request." The Taming of the Shrew

Quotes Courtesy of American Shakespeare Center