Who do you support for Governor in Pe...

Since: May 12

Chambersburg, PA

#54119 Nov 18, 2013
GOP Ramps Up Smear Campaign Against Obamacare Navigators

Beware anybody trying to help people sign up for health insurance under Obamacare.

That's the line from top Senate Republicans, who have magnified their smear campaign against the law's so-called navigators, groups that have received federal money to assist people in enrolling for coverage. Their latest shot: darkly warning that Americans could put their personal and financial safety at risk if they seek out assistance.

Republicans have a longstanding animosity toward the navigators -- state officials in a number of red states have put up roadblocks for them -- but the comments of Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), Senate Minority Whip John Cornyn (R-TX) and Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) are a new extreme in the party's assault on those tasked with helping Americans navigate the health reform law.


Since: May 12

Chambersburg, PA

#54120 Nov 18, 2013
We have officially reached peak 'Obamacare/Dems in disarray' delusion

Josh Kraushaar of National Journal opines:

Unless the HealthCare.gov website miraculously gets fixed by next month, there's a growing likelihood that over time, enough Democrats may join Republicans to decide to start over and scrap the whole complex health care enterprise.[...]

Would President Obama sign a death warrant on his own signature legislation? That's almost impossible to imagine, but it's entirely reasonable that he may not have a choice in the matter.

And why would they have no choice in the matter? Because, Kraushaar says, Congress may soon have veto-proof majorities in both chambers that want to repeal Obamacare. But, as Jason Linkins asks:

Cool story, bro, but you got any sources on this?

As it turns out, the answer is no. The closest he comes is an anonymous quote from a "Democratic campaign operative," but even that quote ("we don't care what the White House says") doesn't support Kraushaar's claims that repeal is right around the corner.


Since: May 12

Chambersburg, PA

#54122 Nov 18, 2013
Right wing cyber attacks on Healthcare.gov website confirmed

Roberta Stempfley highlighted one successful attack that is designed to deny access to the website called a Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attack. A DDoS attack is designed to make a network unavailable to intended users, generally through a concerted effort to disrupt service such as repeatedly accessing the servers, saturating them with more traffic than the website is designed to handle.

Right wingers have been distributing the link to the necessary tools to perform the attacks on the Healthcare.gov website through social networking, as pointed out by Information Week, and other websites .

The name of the attack tool is called, "Destroy Obama Care!"


Since: May 12

Chambersburg, PA

#54126 Nov 18, 2013
Which of the following politicians apologized after uttering erroneous claims about the Affordable Care Act?

Hint: The only guy who apologized is the Democrat.

And he's also the only one being exorcised on the 24/7 news cycle daily, even though he did apologize. The rest? Hey, they're Re- and tea-publicans, so it's their right to be wrong:

"If you like your health insurance, you can keep it." -- Barack Obama

"This is government taking over the entire health insurance industry. The American people ... do not want the government telling them what kind of insurance policy they have to buy, and how much they have to pay for it, and if you don’t like it we’re going to tax you." -- House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio)

"Obamacare adds trillions to our deficits and to our national debt.... Only one president has ever cut Medicare for seniors in this country: Barack Obama." -- Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney

"The health care law rations care, like systems in Canada and Great Britain." -- Florida Gov. Rick Scott

"The health care law has 'death panels.' " -- Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin

The IRS is going to be "in charge" of "a huge national database" on health care that will include Americans’ "personal, intimate, most close-to-the-vest-secrets. " -- Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minn.

Under Obamacare, "75 percent of small businesses now say they are going to be forced to either fire workers or cut their hours." -- Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla.

Since: May 12

Chambersburg, PA

#54127 Nov 18, 2013
GOP Food Stamp Cuts Would Kick 170,000 Vets Out of the Program

Republicans will salute America's veterans Monday, while simultaneously trying to deny them benefits. In addition to reducing housing aid, and denying health care to vets, the GOP is also trying to remove thousands of vets from the food stamp program, known as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or SNAP.

At least 900,000 veterans rely on SNAP. The House Republican version of the farm bill, the five-year piece of legislation that funds nutrition and agriculture provisions, would slash funding for the food stamps program by nearly $40 billion and boot 2.8 million people off the program next year. That includes 170,000 veterans, who would be removed through a provision in the bill that would eliminate food stamps eligibility for non-elderly jobless adults who can't find work or an opening in a job training program.


Since: May 12

Chambersburg, PA

#54132 Nov 18, 2013
Serial Liar, James O’Keefe, Releases Another Deceitfully Edited Video: ObamaCare Edition

However, we can’t know for sure whether they did that because the videos are so heavily edited that there is no way to discern the actual context. Also, the people O’Keefe’s shill spoke with weren’t certified navigators, but were in fact trainees. So the prospect of them making a few mistakes shouldn’t shock anyone.

In one case, though, it is apparent that the navigators did not do what O’Keefe accused them of doing. O’Keefe alleged that the navigators advised the shill to misrepresent his income. In reality, they simply told him to report on the ObamaCare website the same amounts he reported to the IRS. It’s his responsibility to file his income taxes honestly. But the conclusions drawn in the video conceal that. That’s just one example of how creative editing can distort the true picture of what occurred.

Since: May 12

Chambersburg, PA

#54133 Nov 18, 2013

Since: May 12

Chambersburg, PA

#54134 Nov 18, 2013
Bill O'Reilly Pushes Latest Hit Piece by James O'Keefe's Project Veritas

The segment was even too much for Fox faux-liberal Juan Williams, who pointed out to O'Reilly that just catching a couple of trainees on video doesn't mean this is going on all across the system. O'Reilly just brushed off the complaints and went on to attack Williams for his belief that everyone should have access to affordable health care... even if they're lazy, having children of wedlock or not terribly smart. I can't imagine just who Billy boy was trying to stereotype there, can you?

Someone needs to tell him to get some new material, because the rehashing of Ronald Reagan's attacks on "lazy welfare queens" is getting tiresome, as is his support of O'Keefe and his drummed up "scandals."


Since: May 12

Chambersburg, PA

#54135 Nov 18, 2013
The Obamacare Cancellation Notices You Haven’t Heard About
-The GOP is denying coverage to 5 million working poor Americans.

The stories of private market enrollees being forced to purchase more substantive insurance have animated politics for the last three weeks. But the failure of 25 states to expand Medicaid coverage to 133 percent of the federal poverty line, as envisioned by reform, is actually far more disastrous and undermines the promise of health care for the millions who earn “too much to qualify for Medicaid but not enough to qualify for Marketplace premium tax credits.”
Yet the very same Republican lawmakers and conservative advocacy groups who have seized on the cancellation notices to argue that the law has failed are actively campaigning to prevent states from expanding public health insurance to these people.


Since: May 12

Chambersburg, PA

#54136 Nov 18, 2013
Talking Points Memo:

Companies Use Obamacare Confusion To Sell 'Junk Insurance'

The Affordable Care Act was designed to make sure all Americans had a certain level of insurance. But TPM has learned that USHealth Group is actively telling consumers that they don't need that minimum level. In fact, company representatives are telling people they'd be better off without it. And the company may be just one player in a larger industry trend, where companies see non-ACA compliant plans, like the so-called fixed benefit coverage marketed by USHealth Group, as a business opportunity.

Health care industry analysts have long derided the kinds of non-insurance health care coverage products the company is selling as "junk insurance."

"They were not intended to be health insurance," Sabrina Corlette, a research professor at the Health Policy Institute at Georgetown University, told TPM, speaking about fixed benefit plans. "They were intended to be what are called income replacement policies.... But over the years, these things have kind of morphed. And for many people, unfortunately, mainly because they come with a cheaper sticker price, they are marketed as and treated as health insurance. Even though the coverage is really crappy."

USHealth Group's pitch is three-fold, according to accounts provided to TPM by Mortimer and another prospective customer. First, it says, it is a misconception that everyone needs ACA-compliant insurance. Second, USHealth Group plans are cheaper than ACA-compliant policies, even after customers pay the tax penalty for failing to comply with the ACA's individual mandate. Third, Obamacare is scary.

Since: May 12

Chambersburg, PA

#54137 Nov 18, 2013
Consumer Reports:

Junk health insurance
Stingy plans may be worse than none at all

It might seem to be health insurance, if you don’t look too closely, and most people don’t. The premiums are surprisingly affordable. And so millions of unemployed people, service industry workers, and those taken in by fast-talking telemarketers sign up. They may think they’re insured-- until they have a medical problem and find out that their coverage is as skimpy as a hospital gown.
Legal but inadequate
“I was aware that it wasn’t a great plan, but I wasn’t concerned because I wasn’t sick,” she says. But in July 2011 she was diagnosed with breast cancer, at which point the policy’s annual limits of $1,000 a year for outpatient treatment and $2,000 for hospitalization became a huge problem. Facing a $30,000 hospital bill, she delayed treatment.

‘Insurance’ that isn’t

Fixed benefit indemnity plans.

Medical discount cards.
The problem, say regulators and consumer advocates, is that all too often they’re sold to unsuspecting consumers as if they were health insurance -- these days, sometimes with the implication that the plans are part of health care reform.“It’s amazing how quickly these companies appear and disappear,” says Stephen Finan, senior director of policy for the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network.“They’re small operations that are one step ahead of the sheriff.”

Since: May 12

Chambersburg, PA

#54138 Nov 18, 2013
Miami Herald:

Sorry, Obamacare haters: 300k FL Blue customers no longer 'losing' insurance policies for 2014

According to the state's insurance commissioner, the insurance company is holding off on the cancellations. It should be noted as well that these cancellations did not mean people were going with or went without coverage. They were being shifted over into Affordable Care Act-compliant (that is, richer and, in some cases, more expensive plans).

Since: May 12

Chambersburg, PA

#54139 Nov 18, 2013

House GOP 2014 agenda starts with blank slate

Last Thursday, a group of House Republicans filed into Majority Leader Eric Cantor’s Capitol office suite and received a blank piece of paper labeled “Agenda 2014.”

The blank slate just about sums up where Republicans find themselves after a year marked by the first government shutdown in 17 years, futile efforts to repeal Obamacare and the inability to pass spending bills at the levels set by Republican leaders.
“What we have done so far this year clearly hasn’t worked,” said the GOP aide involved in the planning sessions.“Cantor wants to take us in a new direction, which is good. The problem is we don’t know where we are headed, and we don’t know what we can sell to our members.”

Since: May 12

Chambersburg, PA

#54141 Nov 18, 2013
Talking Points Memo:

Special Investigation: How Insurers Are Hiding Obamacare Benefits From Customers

Across the country, insurance companies have sent misleading letters to consumers, trying to lock them into the companies' own, sometimes more expensive health insurance plans rather than let them shop for insurance and tax credits on the Obamacare marketplaces -- which could lead to people like Donna spending thousands more for insurance than the law intended. In some cases, mentions of the marketplace in those letters are relegated to a mere footnote, which can be easily overlooked.

The extreme lengths to which some insurance companies are going to hold on to existing customers at higher price, as the Affordable Care Act fundamentally re-orders the individual insurance market, has caught the attention of state insurance regulators.

The insurance companies argue that it's simply capitalism at work. But regulators don't see it that way. By warning customers that their health insurance plans are being canceled as a result of Obamacare and urging them to secure new insurance plans before the Obamacare launched on Oct. 1, these insurers put their customers at risk of enrolling in plans that were not as good or as affordable as what they could buy on the marketplaces.

TPM has confirmed two specific examples where companies contacted their customers prior to the marketplace's Oct. 1 opening and pushed them to renew their health coverage at a higher price than they would pay through the marketplace. State regulators identified the schemes, but they weren't necessarily able to stop them.
Murders row

West Mifflin, PA

#54143 Nov 18, 2013
Ghost of Trayvon Martin wrote:
My murderer is be in jail again. When will da Black Panthers avenge me?
George Zimmerman charged with felony after allegedly pointing gun at girlfriend

George Zimmerman was charged Monday with felony aggravated assault after allegedly pointing a shotgun at his girlfriend, according to Dennis Lemma, chief deputy with the Seminole County, Florida, Sheriff's Office.

Zimmerman, who was acquitted earlier this year of murdering teenager Trayvon Martin, was arrested after the incident at the home of Samantha Scheibe, Lemma said. He also was charged with two misdemeanors -- domestic violence battery and criminal mischief -- in connection with the same incident, Lemma said.

Zimmerman is being held in jail without bail and will make his first appearance in front of a judge Tuesday at 1:30 p.m. ET.


Since: May 12

Chambersburg, PA

#54144 Nov 18, 2013
Murders row wrote:
<quoted text>
George Zimmerman charged with felony after allegedly pointing gun at girlfriend
George Zimmerman was charged Monday with felony aggravated assault after allegedly pointing a shotgun at his girlfriend, according to Dennis Lemma, chief deputy with the Seminole County, Florida, Sheriff's Office.
Zimmerman, who was acquitted earlier this year of murdering teenager Trayvon Martin, was arrested after the incident at the home of Samantha Scheibe, Lemma said. He also was charged with two misdemeanors -- domestic violence battery and criminal mischief -- in connection with the same incident, Lemma said.
Zimmerman is being held in jail without bail and will make his first appearance in front of a judge Tuesday at 1:30 p.m. ET.

Who could have ever predicted?

Since: May 12

Chambersburg, PA

#54145 Nov 18, 2013

President Obama Check-Mates Health Insurance Lobby

The entire problem of people who are currently in the individual insurance market being dropped resulted not from the president making a disingenuous promise to the contrary but from insurance companies making the conscious decision to drop their insured and blame it on Obamacare.

Insurers have had more than 3 years to bring their plans into alignment with the minimum coverage requirements of health reform, and they have chosen not to do so over time, instead choosing this moment to scare their subscribers.

The president just turned the tables on the great villain, the insurance companies. He knows what everyone in Washington and the beltway media also know but won't tell you: insurance companies are dropping their coverage without offering reasonable alternatives to their individual market subscribers for one primary reason: they want a piece of the federal subsidies available to millions of Americans through the health insurance exchanges.

They need people buying from the exchanges with the subsidies to help their bottom lines as much as President Obama needs Americans to sign up in order for the Affordable Care Act to succeed. They want a piece of that pot of money, but they want to blame the Obama administration for dragging you there.

And so what the president did was simple, yet brilliant: he told Americans who are distressed that yes, they could keep their insurance plans if they like, instantly making all the cancellation letters blaming the ACA moot and taking away the insurance company's excuses for dropping people.

But, with that same brilliant stroke, he forced insurance companies to do something they haven't been familiar with in decades: to tell their subscribers the truth.

Since: May 12

Chambersburg, PA

#54146 Nov 18, 2013
I’m the story Obamacare’s opponents don’t want you to hear
- I’ve officially enrolled in coverage through the marketplace. It was easier than I expected — and will save me about $10,000 a year.

Under my current insurance plan, I’m paying $1,400 a month for coverage. Yes, it’s comprehensive. At that price, it had better be. But my rates had been going up by $100 a month annually in the last few years and, as a self-employed woman with a pre-existing condition, I didn’t have a lot of choices.

Starting January 1, I’ll be paying $530 a month for almost identical coverage. Actually, my deductible is less —$150 instead of $250. My prescription co-pay will be just a tad higher, but that still won’t bring me anywhere near what I’m paying per month now. The cost to see a doctor is just about the same if I stay in-network, and the nationwide network is huge. All the other benefits are comparable, with the added bonus of programs to help me better manage my diabetes. Plus, I can keep every single one of my doctors.


Since: May 12

Chambersburg, PA

#54155 Nov 19, 2013
Another Obamacare horror story debunked

Deborah Cavallaro is a hard-working real estate agent in the Westchester suburb of Los Angeles who has been featured prominently on a round of news shows lately, talking about how badly Obamacare is going to cost her when her existing plan gets canceled and she has to find a replacement.

She says she's angry at President Obama for having promised that people who like their health plans could keep them, when hers is getting canceled for not meeting Obamacare's standards.

"Please explain to me," she told Maria Bartiromo on CNBC Wednesday, "how my plan is a 'substandard' plan when ... I'd be paying more for the exchange plans than I am currently paying by a wide margin."

Bartiromo didn't take her up on her request. So I will.


Since: May 12

Chambersburg, PA

#54156 Nov 19, 2013
The myths of Obamacare's 'failure'

Attacks on the Affordable Care Act have stepped up over the last week or so. You'd think that the healthcare reform known as Obamacare is leading to the wholesale loss of affordable insurance by huge sectors of the American public, many of whom will be impoverished by being forced into low-quality health plans at exorbitant prices.

You'd think the entire reform is on "life support," as the usually judicious National Journal put it today, speculating that Democrats may soon start calling for its repeal.

Don't buy the hype. The numbers tell an entirely different story. What they also demonstrate is that the myth of Obamacare's "failure" is a product of the same Republican noise machine that has been working to undermine this crucial reform since Day One. It's assisted by news reporting about canceled health policies that typically ranges from woefully misinformed to spectacularly ignorant, and even at its best is incomplete.


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