Top Of My Head

Thoughts on everything from Politics to Video Games

Category: Uncategorized (page 1 of 65)

Wisconsin Family Council

The Wisconsin “Family” Council claims to be “Dedicated to strengthening and preserving marriage, family, life and liberty in Wisconsin”. But, alas, it is a lie. A great, big lie. What they are for is shoving their backward, inconsiderate, conservative, and un-Christian views down all of our throats. They are not dedicated to preserving liberty in Wisconsin, they are dead set against it. They believe somehow that if someone with different views engages in liberty in Wisconsin, then their rights have somehow been violated.
These people are the enemy of liberty and justice for all not only in Wisconsin, but in America. These are the people who demand fairness for them. These are the people who point to misused Bible verses and claim righteousness, but then turn their backs on their family members. These are the people who hide among us, acting as if they have hearts, but underneath their phony facade is a heartless, cruel person.
But, I have a favor to ask of all Wisconsin residents — and only Wisconsin residents — to PLEASE, PLEASE take their survey.
You might wonder why and here’s why: Let’s show them just what kind of minority they truly are in this state and then maybe they’ll move to some other state and leave us the HELL ALONE!
However; I digress. We should take pity upon them for we are good Christian people. We should get down on our knees every night and ask the Lord to show them the way. To beg for the Lord’s forgiveness on their behalf to ask Him to have mercy on their hypocritical souls.
They should, also, get down on their knees and beg for God’s mercy. That when it is their time to meet their maker, that He takes great pity upon them and allows them everlasting life and does not throw them into the fires of Hell.

God Bless

Don’t forget to take their survey — answer truthfully — and, please, give them your information, so they know you’re a real person. http://wifamilycouncil.org/Survey_09.htm Thanks!

Recall Wisconsin Attorney General J. B. Van Hollen

Apparently, Wisconsin Attorney General J. B. Van Hollen doesn’t understand just what his job is, nor does he understand what his duty to the citizens of Wisconsin is.

Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen doesn’t want to defend the laws of this great state. He has decided that he isn’t going to defend the domestic partnership law. He expects the state to pay for an outside attorney at $175.00 per hour. Isn’t that why we pay him?!?

Wisconsin Attorney General J. B. Van Hollen doesn’t stand up for Wisconsin Laws.

I want this man gone from office and if we don’t recall him, then we have to vote for the other guy. Van Hollen stands for what is wrong with the Republican Party — they have all completely lost their minds. Defend the law, you self-righteous jerk. If we don’t recall you, I promise by all that is right and holy that you won’t be our Attorney General after the 2010 election. It’s time we take back our country from those who only seek to destroy it with placing their personal views higher than the good of our fellow men and women.

Who’s with me?

God Bless

Disappointed in Paul Ryan

I have to tell you that I am really disappointed in Congressman Paul Ryan. Now, I've never voted for Paul Ryan and since he voted the Republican line 95% of the time, I've spent a lot of time being disappointed in the Congressman from the first district in Wisconsin. But, he is from Janesville — a very conservative town — so I expected he probably wouldn't vote the way this constituent things he should. So, I've been disppointed in the way he votes, but not in him. Does that make sense?

Congressman Ryan has always provided answers as to why he's voted one way or another. I have always received a response from him, even if I didn't like it, and I've always received information from his office. Looking for a fact I couldn't find on my own, his office would lead me to the right government website or article or whatever and the fact would be produced on my computer screen.

Usually when I care about an issue, I write Feingold, Kohl and Ryan. I, generally, write them the same letter. And, Ryan answers every single time. Feingold and Kohl, not so much — which disappoints me, but I give them a little leeway. Feingold and Kohl are responsible to the whole state, Ryan only has our little district.

However; I wrote the three of them my concerns on healthcare and I have received responses from both Feingold and Kohl (Kohl responded first) and NOTHING, NOTHING from Ryan. I can't believe it. Here is the most important issue facing the country and Ryan hasn't sent anything to me. Even when I asked him specific questions regarding his plan.

It is so unusual. I'm really hurt. 🙁 As silly as it sounds, I thought we had a little relationship going. I miss hearing from him.

God Bless

Quiet

I was reading one of my news magazines and I came across a small article that states bipartisanship doesn’t work, which seems unreasonable to me. It has kept our country going for over 200 years, so I was a little confused. Until I read farther, the Republicans of now are not the Republicans of the past. Well, I could’ve told you that. Republicans over the last forty plus years have increasingly moved right, while liberals have barely ticked left. The now GOP is so right wing they don’t even make left turns.
And, I can see this. It is the reason I have walked away, no make that ran away, from my GOP roots. It’s crazy.
I blame Rush Limbaugh.
But, that’s just me.
God Bless

Domesticated Bliss

Yesterday, at around 1:30 PM, Cheryl and I, along with my parents and our good friend, Jerri and Preston, walked into the Racine County Courthouse and registered for domestic partnership. There’s a five day waiting period, so next week, we have to go back and file the paperwork with the County Clerk’s office. Some of our friends and family members read about this yesterday on our facebook pages. Some of our friends have asked what all this entails and I thought I should post a brief outline of our rights.

  • Inheritance and Survivor Protections
  • Family and Medical Leave
  • Medical, Hospital and Visitation Rights
  • Prevention of one Partner from testifying against another Partner
  • Transfer of real estate and car and boat titles are exempt from fees.

There are 43 state rights / protections granted to domestic partnerships, as opposed to the 200 protections offered by marriage.

Just thought I’d fill you in.

God Bless

My Healthcare Plan

Let me come clean and tell you which plan was written by whom:
Plan A is the House Democratic Bill. Plan B is the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee’s Bill. Plan C is a plan under discussion by a bipartisan group of six senators on the Finance Committee. Plan D is the House Republican proposal. All of these can be found here: http://www.desmoinesregister.com/article/20090813/NEWS/90813006/-1/NEWS04 It is the news site where I found them.
Now, I try to stay positive about all of the plans, but I have to say I’m highly disappointed in Plan D – the House Republican proposal. It pretty much leaves things as they are and that bothers me. I know Republicans don’t want a government run plan. I know Republicans think that government interference is a bad thing and I can understand that. But, what I can’t understand is how they can just continue to ignore the fact that the system is broken. 47 million American citizens have no health insurance. That is 13% of the population. It is a high enough number to swing an election. On top of that, those 47 million Americans leave the rest of us paying a much higher price. Hospitals, when they provide care and aren’t reimbursed, have to make up the money loss somewhere and that means charging more for the care those of us who are insured receive. Which means the insurance companies pay more and the premiums go up and so on and so on. We all suffer.
Now, I’m not saying I’m extremely happy with any one of the four plans, but I think combining them might not be a bad idea.
First, the who is covered: the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee bill aims to cover 97% of Americans, as does the bipartisan, Finance Committee’s plan. This is very important. The whole point is to get as many people covered as possible.
Second, the cost: I think the Senate plan at being only $650 million over ten years and covering 97% of the people is a little unrealistic. I think the $1 trillion mark sounds about right. This doesn’t mean I think we should spend that much, but that it is a reasonable to believe the healthcare plan will cost that much over ten years.
Third, how’s it paid for: Let’s face it, a plan with this much coverage is going to cost us some dough. The Republican plan, which didn’t even offer a proposed cost, states no new taxes. Boy, that sounds good. The plan implies that by reducing Medicare and Medicaid fraud, the plan would be paid for. Unfortunately, I don’t have the numbers for the amount of money lost due to Medicare and Medicaid fraud, but I’m thinking it probably isn’t enough to pay for any plan. Now, I would be interested in hearing or reading someone’s idea on how it could. I wrote Paul Ryan regarding his plan and I still don’t have an answer. (Which I’m very disappointed, he is usually right on the ball.)
I think a combination of all four plans might be the answer to how to pay for this. Raising taxes on singles who earn more than $280,000 a year seems reasonable to me. Most of the people I know don’t come anywhere near that figure. Raising taxes on families that earn more than $350,000 isn’t a bad idea either. The highest tax bracket in this country is 33%. We jump from 15% to 25%, but after 25%, the jumps are much smaller. Trust me, a single person earning $280,000 a year will be able to afford a two percent tax raise. I’m also for raising the taxes on other items, such as cigarettes or liquor, but I think I’m alone in that regard.
I’m not for cutting Medicare nor am I for cutting Medicaid. No cuts. The elderly have enough problems. No cuts, but rooting out fraud — that’s a good idea.
Further – charging companies a portion of the insurance costs the government pays is a terrific idea. I think that it is only fair. Companies benefit from their workers’ hard work. More and more companies are expecting more from their employees – especially salary employees – without offering raises. Being penalize if they allow employees and employees’ children to be on a government program is a good thing. Penalizing companies such as, oh, I don’t know, Wal-Mart, could help pay a great deal toward the program.
I think the combination of rooting out Medicare and Medicaid fraud, a small tax raise on the wealthy and penalizing large companies for not providing affordable health insurance should be able to pay for the plan. I think not purchasing the F-22 from Lockheed, which has cost us the taxpayers over $351 million in overruns is an example of government waste we could cut and use to help pay for the plan.i
Fourth, the mandates: I know the government mandates a lot of different things and that’s not always a good thing, but the only way any healthcare plan will work is if we all have insurance. The healthcare costs of those people who are uninsured are staggering. This is not to say that we all have to have fancy group coverage. The bare minimum should be catastrophe insurance, along with a pre-taxed Health Savings Plan. I know that some people say, well, rich people don’t need health insurance, so they shouldn’t be forced to carry it, but even a rich person could have their entire wealth wiped out by the cost of cancer treatments.
To support my argument further, let’s consider this: everyone of us who has care insurance has coverage that includes uninsured and under-insured motorists. And, why do we do that? So, we can still be protected if someone that doesn’t have insurance slams into our car. Hospitals will need the same protection. There are some people out there who can cover $3200 out of pocket expense for a cardio-test, but I’m not one of them. Had I had to pay for the test myself, I’d still be making payments. And, the hospital would still be waiting for their money, which is one of the reasons hospitals have to charge so much. If everyone is covered by health insurance, hospitals wouldn’t to write off unpaid bills, thus reducing their overhead. Of course, I’m notoriously cheap and I probably wouldn’t get the test. I would be the type of person who would take chances with her healthcare. In interest of full disclosure, in this case, I would be okay without the test. My heart is strong, like bull.
Fifth, how to choose the health insurance plan. I like the exchange idea, but I was just reading an articleii that in Massachusetts the exchange isn’t working. That being noted, I think if the Massachusetts plan isn’t working, we use it to take what does work and throw away what doesn’t. I, also, like the idea that the exchange is state run, with Federal standards. Each state should know what its citizens need and is better prepared to make changes for what doesn’t work more quickly than the Feds.
Sixth, for the benefits, I like the Democratic plan, so I just copied it verbatim: “A committee would recommend an “essential benefits package” including preventive services, mental health services, oral heath and vision for children; out-of pocket costs would be capped. The new benefit package would be the basic benefit package offered in the exchange and over time would become the minimum quality standard for employer plans. Insurers wouldn’t be able to deny coverage based on pre-existing conditions.”iii
Finally, the government run plan, I like the idea of a government run plan to a point that competes with private insurers. I think private insurers deserve a little unfair competition. However; I think it should be limited to cover those who don’t qualify for any other plan or subsidy. Let’s not create a huge fiasco here. Also, I like the part in the Senate where the plan would “would pay doctors and hospitals based on what private insurers now pay.”iv
Okay, that’s it. That’s my plan in a nutshell. I think it works better and is better for all of us than the four plans.
This is a pretty long blog post, but I wanted to include as much as I could. I’m posting this as a PDF, as well, so you can print it out and share it. If you like my idea, please feel free to post it on your own blog – as long as you link back to mine. Further, send it to your representative and say you support it. I’m sending it to mine. We need to improve healthcare in this country, but none of those four plans mentioned are going to cut it. If you don’t like what I’ve outlined, I’d love to hear why and I encourage you to come up with your own plan. I, also, encourage you to make sure you write your representative. Healthcare is too important to leave up to the politicians and lobbyists.
God Bless
iMother Jones September / October 2009, page 41
iihttp://www.motherjones.com/mojo/2009/08/obamas-insurance-plan-comes-right-wing-think-tank
iiihttp://www.desmoinesregister.com/article/20090813/NEWS/90813006/-1/NEWS04
ivibid

Plumber

Yesterday, we had a plumber come out to get my basement sink to drain again. It took two guys – Dan and Derek – ten minutes to open up the pipe enough to unplug the sink and, thus, allow me to use my kitchen sink again. Then, they sent a fiber optic camera down there to show me how much icky grease and crap is in my pipes and offer to charge me $850 to clean it out, which really pissed me off, because what the hell did I just pay you $285 to do? I thought it was to clean out the pipe. When I wouldn’t go for the additional $850 job, they offered a $500 one. Really? I’m going to pay you a total of $785 for one clogged drain, right, that’s not happening.
BTW, they didn’t put back anything they moved out of their way. And, Derek’s attitude was pretty crappy once I said I didn’t want the additional work done.
Now, flash forward to this morning, Derek had the nerve to call me this morning – from a blocked id – to tell me that something was “wrong” with my credit card and he wanted the number again. So, I tell him, you’re not calling from an office phone and I’m not giving you my card number. I don’t even know that he’s calling from the office, since it is a blocked id. I tell him, have someone from the office call me on Monday and I’ll give them my number. Oh, no, he says, I need to run this today.
Really? Then, I tell him, call me from an unblocked number. I’m not giving my credit card number to you when you’re calling from a blocked id. Well, he starts to argue and I tell him that I’ll gladly call the office on Monday and straighten the whole thing out, he gets madder. So, I just hung up. I figure if they’re really a legit business, they wouldn’t call from blocked ids. Plus, they took an imprint of my credit card, so what could he possibly need?
Guess who’ll be calling them on Monday? And, guess who will NEVER use that plumber again?
The nerve!

God Bless

Last Post…

The last posting I made is a little misleading. I hadn’t finished my thought process, nor did I finish writing the post, but I had scheduled it, so it posted this morning. Bad idea to schedule something I hadn’t finished writing. I didn’t want to take it down because someone all ready commented on it, so I’m leaving it up for now, but watch this space on Monday, because I will reveal my healthcare plan.

God Bless

My Opinion on the Healthcare Plans

Okay, I’m hoping all of my gentle readers have had a chance to read all four parts. And, since I’m writing this in advance, I’m hoping all of you have posted your opinions. I’d like to read them.
Here’s the thing. I think we can all agree that the healthcare system in America needs work. I think we can all agree that everyone deserves some form of health insurance to cover them in their time of need. None of us want to end up paying more than we all ready are. We don’t want to have our choices limited.
Now, I’ve read all four summaries and I think Plan A is the best choice, allow me to explain why.

Healthcare Plan D

Here’s the second summary. The whole thing was written by the Associated Press, so I take no credit. I tried to actually find this on the Associated Press website, but I couldn’t find it.

WHO’S COVERED: The House GOP’s plan, in outline form for now, says it aims to make insurance affordable and accessible to all. There aren’t estimates about how many additional people would be covered.

COST: Unknown.

HOW’S IT PAID FOR: No new taxes are proposed, but Republicans say they want to reduce Medicare and Medicaid fraud.

REQUIREMENTS FOR INDIVIDUALS: No mandates.

REQUIREMENTS FOR EMPLOYERS: No mandates; small business tax credits are offered. Employers are encouraged to move to “opt-out” rather than “opt-in” rules for offering health coverage.

SUBSIDIES: Tax credits are offered to “low- and modest-income” Americans. People who aren’t covered through their employers but buy their own insurance are allowed to take a tax deduction. Low-income retirees younger than 65 (the eligibility age for Medicare) would be offered assistance.

BENEFIT PACKAGE: Insurers would have to allow children to stay on their parents’ plan through age 25.

GOVERNMENT-RUN PLAN: No public plan.

HOW YOU CHOOSE YOUR HEALTH INSURANCE: No new purchasing exchange or marketplace is proposed. Health savings accounts and flexible spending plans would be strengthened.

CHANGES TO MEDICAID: People eligible for Medicaid would be allowed to use the value of their benefit to purchase a private plan.

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