a few thoughts from liberal librarian….

by Liberal Librarian

The spectacle provided by the GOP primary race is one that could dishearten anyone who believes in the salutary power of democracy. The race has come down to four candidates, only two of whom have any traction with what passes for the GOP base—and the traction is very light, even then.

One, Willard Mitt Romney, is a scion of wealth, running for the Presidency for no discernible reason other than because he feels it is owed to him due to his class prerogatives. He is a man of no values, of no core beliefs, other than a belief that as a wealthy man his assets should be well nigh untouched.

When he ran against Ted Kennedy for Senate in 1994, he claimed to be to the left of the late senator. He failed in that race. He succeeded in gaining the Massachusetts governorship in 2002, during which time he was able to enact comprehensive health reform, one that formed the basis for President Obama’s own successful effort; he now runs away from that worthwhile achievement, not because he thinks it was a bad reform, but simply because it is now associated with Obama’s own signature piece of legislation, and thus tainted with the imprimatur of the foreign, the socialist, the practically evil.

He ran for the Republican presidential nomination in 2008, and lost quite badly to John McCain. But, unlike everyone else, he didn’t stop running after the primaries were over. He kept a low-level campaign going after the November elections, pressing the flesh, building networks, trying to create an air of inevitability around himself so that he could take on the hated Usurper in 2012 and restore America to whatever America needed to be restored to…..

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162 Responses to “a few thoughts from liberal librarian….”

  1. 1 donna dem 4 obama
    February 1, 2012 at 12:45 pm

    A Masterpiece of Truth!

    • 2 JoJothecat
      February 1, 2012 at 1:38 pm

      This is pure genious LL, you should be on tee vee instead of most of those idiots on MSNBC and other pundits who only want to puff themselves up.

      This should be read by all the hand wringgers and poll watchers that everytime their is a drop in the polls by the lame pollsters, to go back and read this. I feel as you that PBO will win once he does start campainging. He will show americans who truly want our government to work that the GOP, Teaparty, empogs, OWS do not have their best interest as a whole. That what the president is trying to do is set america on a better road and to never lose track, don’t go back to reagonomics, wall street greed, for a few pennies in low taxes and higher wealath for the 1%.

  2. 4 FiredUpInCA
    February 1, 2012 at 12:46 pm

    I second that!

    • February 1, 2012 at 3:40 pm

      Me 3…

      Awesome wordsmith!

      And, then, there’s this: (TPV’s Deaniac83, always, at his best…It was posted on an earlier thread.)

      Me, neither…

      YES.WE.CAN…DO.(Much)More, Together – WE MUST!
      YES.WE.CAN, Again…Obama/Biden 2012!
      PRESS ON!

  3. 6 Marlz (@marjgra)
    February 1, 2012 at 12:50 pm

    Wow!! Thank you LL. . . great read!

  4. 7 LOL
    February 1, 2012 at 12:50 pm

    HAhAHAHAH….Looks like Seamus (the Romney dog) actually escaped to Canada. Probably to seek socialized health care after his traumatic journey.

    “But a report in the NY Observer cheekily suggests that might not be the whole story. A trusted source tells them two of Romney’s sons actually told reporters in an off the record chat that Seamus ran away when they reached Canada.”


    • 8 donna dem 4 obama
      February 1, 2012 at 12:54 pm


      Now that would be hysterical if proven true.

      • February 1, 2012 at 12:58 pm

        Actually, I think it’s supremely sad. Dogs are pack animals, and for Seamus to have left his pack just speaks to the utter self-centeredness of the Romney clan: he would rather be alone on the street than spend another minute with the laughing dog-abuser. Just one more reason to revile that man.

        • 10 LOL
          February 1, 2012 at 1:04 pm

          Great post LL..sorry to bring that story to an otherwise serious post. As you said, it speaks to the contempt Romney holds everyone who can’t make him more money.

    • 13 Bill
      February 1, 2012 at 1:06 pm

      This could well be true as the return trip of Seamus has never been reported. Gail Collins needs to get on this story right away.

    • 14 Pamela
      February 1, 2012 at 1:58 pm

      Smart doggie, Canada is a very nice country with many kind and peaceable people. He made a great choice! Seamus had a higher consciousness than his human owners!

  5. February 1, 2012 at 12:53 pm

    BRAVO, LL!!!! Upper class warfare, indeed.

  6. 16 a4alice
    February 1, 2012 at 1:03 pm

    LL: Brilliant!!!!!! off to tweet this to the masses everyone should read!!!

  7. 17 Ladyhawke
    February 1, 2012 at 1:06 pm


    Burn him, bomb him, poison him, hack him into a thousand pieces and he quickly reassembles and gets back up again, madder than before and coming right back at ya’.

    Romney’s Pyrrhic Victory

    By Al Giordano


    But the costs of this victory to Romney go far beyond the $17 million in attack ads he and his Super PACs deployed to stop – now for the second time in a young campaign – the rise of rival Newt Gingrich. Hell hath no wrath like a Gingrich scorched. The former House Speaker is the Keith Richards of US politics: no matter what debauchery he passes through he never dies. Newt is the zombie candidate. Burn him, bomb him, poison him, hack him into a thousand pieces and he quickly reassembles and gets back up again, madder than before and coming right back at ya’.

    The story out of Florida isn’t Romney’s win (and if, as some late polls suggest, it ends up thinner than double digits, even that will be questioned). It is that Romney has failed, again, to eliminate his nemesis. But that’s not even the worst that happened to Mitt in Florida. Ten days ago, general election polls showed him in a tie with President Barack Obama in this must-win swing state. Then Romney had to debate Gingrich and the other candidates and make bold statements to prove his fealty to the far right GOP base that are far outside of mainstream public opinion, especially the views of independent swing voters. The new general election numbers in Florida are Obama 49 percent to 41 for Romney; a dramatic turnabout for the president in a matter of days. (All the Republican candidates have been wounded for the general election by their adventures in pander-to-the-base wingnuttery, the poll also shows: Obama 50, Paul 36; Obama 50, Santorum 35; Obama 52, Gingrich 35.) The survey was taken January 25 to 27 and has a 2.6 margin of error.



  8. 18 FiredUpInCA
    February 1, 2012 at 1:07 pm

    The interesting development in the horrible Republican primary spectacle is the continuing lack of enthusiasm for their frontrunner, their race-baiting book tourist posing as a candidate and their pied piper libertarian.

    The media and the GOP have been and will continue to push a narrative of major disappointment and deflated approval numbers for the President.(See today’s stories about state by state dips in approval.)

    What is underreported is how low — historically low — the approval rating is for the Boehner-led, tea party-flavored House is. We received non-stop coverage of the tea party as they rose but we get scant coverage of how they govern and how they are despised.

    What is underreported is the change in fortunes for Gov. Walker, Gov. Haley, Gov. Scott and others. What is consistently glossed over is how weak of a frontrunner Willard is and unenthusiastic his voters are.

    Because of this biased, dishonest coverage, I believe this year’s electoral landslide for the President will be more satisfying than his historic win.

    • 19 gn
      February 1, 2012 at 1:52 pm

      What a terrific comment. + Compared with the Democratic bench in 2008, the differences could not be more stark. While I’m clearly an Obama partisan, I must say that we had an embarrassment of riches during those primaries—nearly all of our candidates were serious, and brought something to the table; in addition, although I believe that one candidate went way over the top with regards to kitchen sink tactics, the campaigns overall (particularly that of the winner) were positive. The disaster on display this year out of the Republicans is such a vivid contrast: ideology aside, not a SINGLE ONE of those candidates is fit for the highest office in the land, NOT ONE. It’s truly a disgrace and display of contempt for the country. Tens of thousands of 99% negative commercials bombarding Floridians–that’s truly a display of contempt for the electorate and I’d argue, a form of psychological battery (most people, no matter ideological differences, don’t want to see people just slaughtering each other like that).

      It truly makes me appreciate what we have in the WH and what we stand to lose should ideologues and opportunities on both ends of the ideological spectrum get their way.

      • February 1, 2012 at 3:32 pm

        GN, that sound of rushing water you hear is millions of Floridians taking a shower to wash away the stench of the slimy, hate-filled ads that filled their tv screens night and day. Every state on the primary calendar in the months ahead needs to stock up on soap and brace for impact.

    • February 1, 2012 at 2:49 pm

      I just realize how civil and courteous the debates during the Democratic primaries of 2008 were (yes, I know – rolls eyes).

      Even my father – hospitalized for a second operation of his intestinal cancer – noticed the vile language of the Republican candidates …

  9. 22 PurpleShoesLA
    February 1, 2012 at 1:07 pm

    Bravo, LL Bravo. This needs to be an op-ed in our LA Times, Sunday edition. PREACH!!

  10. 23 donna dem 4 obama
    February 1, 2012 at 1:09 pm

    LL I am tweeting this to everyone I can think of. I’ve read it 3 times and each time it sends a chill up and down my spine.

    It’s simply brilliant!

  11. 24 Bobfr (aka Our4thEstate)
    February 1, 2012 at 1:14 pm

    Superb, LL.

    “I think what we’re seeing is the quickening of a process begun in 2008 by the Obama victory. It is a corrective to the conservative dominance of the past 30 years. Just as liberals became bloated and unresponsive to change by the long, post-FDR liberal ascendancy, and were trounced by the Reagan Revolution, the conservative era is at an end.”

    Yes it is. And, as you note, when a genuine conservative opposition party emerges, it will be focused on improved performance of the socially and fiscally just and sustainable programs President Obama has already established during his first 3 years in Office and will extend and perfect during his second term.

    Thank you.

    #LandslideOBAMA2012 #OutPerform1936 #YesWeMust

  12. February 1, 2012 at 1:19 pm

    Great stuff LL. The era of conservatism, as defined by the present bunch of crook, is nearing its end indeed. If the dems (both the congress critters and voters) stick together, they can drive the stake into that dying, heartless monster called the republican party.

  13. 26 utaustinliberal
    February 1, 2012 at 1:19 pm

    Awesome commentary LL.

  14. 27 CTGirl
    February 1, 2012 at 1:19 pm

    This will be shared! Well said LL! thank you for this!

  15. February 1, 2012 at 1:19 pm

    LL, that’s just a completely wonderful piece, I’m re-reading it and re-reading it and relishing every word. Your assessment of Romney is just so perfect:

    “…. running for the Presidency for no discernible reason other than because he feels it is owed to him due to his class prerogatives. He is a man of no values, of no core beliefs…”.

    And your take on the likely fate of the current brand of ‘conservatism’ uplifting.

    I feel seriously honored that you posted it here – thank you so much.

    • February 1, 2012 at 1:26 pm

      Someone should send this piece to Sullivan, I won’t right now because I broke up with him after the SOTU. But Andrew is on a big anti-Romney tear right now.


    • February 1, 2012 at 1:28 pm

      A little bit of kismet.

      I’m at my desk at the moment, and on the bench outside my window there’s a homeless African American family: mother, father, and 3 kids. They used to come to the library and spend the day on a quite regular basis. They come less often now.

      Now, they’re not disheveled; they’re what is known as “functional homeless”. But if the kids are outside, you know they don’t go to school, or at least not on a regular basis. They’re the nicest kids you could hope for, and the parents are kind and polite.

      No one in the GOP has any concern for this family. Not Mitt Romney, not Newt Gingrich, not Karl Rove. Not a one. They’re why this near-fascist conservative movement has to be beaten so badly that it can never rise again.

      And what the Koch Bros. and their ilk don’t realize is that they have a choice: a Velvet Revolution, in which they get to keep a good chunk of their money, but give some of it up in taxes in order to maintain social stability, or riots in the streets, in which no one is safe.

      Thank you for letting me post here, Chips. And thanks for the editing. I tend to write long paragraphs. 😆

      • 35 donna dem 4 obama
        February 1, 2012 at 1:31 pm

        OMG you just opened up the floodgates with me talking about that family. There are so many of those stories out there and yet Mr. Romney says he’s not concerned about them cuz they have a safety net. Geesh!!

        • 36 JoJothecat
          February 1, 2012 at 1:41 pm

          Exactly! Where is their safety net from being homeless,jobless, cold and hungry. I know these folks would rather be working and their kids in school….that’s why I can’t stand Newt Robme.

          • 37 anniebella
            February 1, 2012 at 2:37 pm

            Romney is a dam idiot with money.

            • 38 anniebella
              February 1, 2012 at 2:49 pm

              As a darn church man like he says he is the Bible says to always look after the poor. Thank God we have a President who are concern about the poor, the middle class and even the rich. The poor has safety net, yea right which the Republicans is trying to tear that safety net from under them. And Romney is concern about the rich, because under his tax plan the rich will get richer.

          • 39 57andFemale
            February 1, 2012 at 2:58 pm

            I’ve been at work today and didn’t have time to catch much coverage: a little MSNBC this morning and Ed Schultz on the way to the office.

            Ed was fine on the pushback on Romney’s callous comments today and his lies about not caring about the wealthy, but is there no one who can give Ed a few facts?

            What was missing was this simple fact: Romney has already said he will gut the ‘safety net’; his tax policies actually tax the very poor and give humongous tax breaks to the wealthy. ‘Bush tax cuts on steroids’.

            Are you telling me Ed Schultz didn’t know that?

        • February 1, 2012 at 3:45 pm

          Romney’s dismissive words regarding the poor are spoken by a man with no heart and, I’m sorry, with no understanding of the religion he professes to follow. Society’s obligation to help the poor goes far back in our history as human beings and is preached by every religion. He has no idea what he’s talking about as PBO said. Nor does he have any idea how cold, ruthless and empty he appears when he utters these thoughts.

      • 42 gn
        February 1, 2012 at 2:04 pm

        Another treasure of a comment, bringing it home.

        Reminds me of a string of twitters by one of the more thoughtful celebrities (Nick Cannon). He pointed out the millions of children whose only regular meals are those served in school. He asked incredulously whether we are actually supposed to stop helping people in this situation. Per Willard Mitt, yes. They are not fellow Americans, they are losers seeking “cradle to grave” handouts who should be beneath the concern of the POTUS. And ultra-wealthy people (who shudder at the thought of not being able to hoard extra millions which they have no ability to spend in this lifetime) have no problem spending those millions trying to propagandize the electorate into making a foolish decision.

        It’s pretty repulsive to think of it (and standing in such contrast with the current administration which is testing programs which not only extend free school meal programs but seek to remove the stigma from them so that kids are not embarrassed to take advantage of the meals).

        What’s on display in these GOP primaries is truly just the worst that this country has to offer (similar to Palin on a national presidential ticket).

      • February 1, 2012 at 3:16 pm

        LL- this I think is imperative: They’re why this near-fascist conservative movement has to be beaten so badly that it can never rise again.

        Exactly, they have to be completely knocked off their self ordained pedestal.. getting out the vote is the way to do this, we must, imo give Barack Obama & all dems a landslide this year – as a country we really have to choose who we’re going to be going forward.

      • February 1, 2012 at 3:48 pm

        LL, as I said in an earlier thread, you were inspired to real truth with your post about the fate of the GOP. I’m in awe of your talent and your insights. I hope you will submit this as a piece for your city’s newspaper. It should get the widest possible distribution.

  16. February 1, 2012 at 1:20 pm

    Some more good news:

    Gallup: ‘U.S. Job Creation Best Since September 2008’


  17. 47 Bobfr (aka Our4thEstate)
    February 1, 2012 at 1:25 pm

    Hopefully it will attract a few more readers to your fantastic essay, LL. Thank you Chips for featuring it!


    • February 1, 2012 at 1:28 pm

      Excellent Bob, your Twitter work is sublime.

    • 49 Ladyhawke
      February 1, 2012 at 1:51 pm



      You are like the town crier of TOD. Your relentless focus on getting out the facts to the masses is remarkable. Your tweets are masterpieces of targeted messaging. Every time I see one, I just think to myself there goes another crack in the media firewall. I really appreciate your hard work and dedication. Knowledge is power. PRESS ON!

    • 50 Bobfr (aka Our4thEstate)
      February 1, 2012 at 2:26 pm

      Thank you Chips & Ladyhawke!!

      #OutPerform1936 #YesWeMust

  18. 51 GGail
    February 1, 2012 at 1:31 pm

    Got a quick second here and wanted to say thank you to LL – that is a well thought out piece and then you hit it out of the park again with: “Neither of these men can be trusted with power, because they have no concern for anyone who can’t give them something useful to their own ends”.

    Well done LL!

    And rachel ray was on top of the world regarding her interview with the First Lady – so cute.

    Good morning all and thanks Chipsticks – you are one in a million 🙂

  19. 52 tally
    February 1, 2012 at 1:34 pm

    Hey LL – Guess who is coming home to the Gs?

    To Tally –

    I cannot express how proud and honored I am to have rejoined your club. While I enjoyed my time in Germany, it couldn’t compare to the years that I spent in Southern California, wearing the Galaxy uniform. This is the club that gave me a chance and believed in me when others did not. This is the club that helped me to grow and improve into the player that I am today.

    A year ago, when I left the club, I said I was hopeful that one day I could return to the Galaxy and help lead them to an MLS Cup championship. Now that I’m back, my goal for 2012 is to do that and more.

    Your support of this club is essential to our success and without it we could not achieve the things that we have in the past and that we hope to in the future. It’s also the reason that I’ve chosen to return to the LA Galaxy. You help to make us a better team and I intend to reward that support with my performance on the field.

    I can’t wait to get back to Los Angeles, get on the field and see you all again very soon.


    Edson Buddle

  20. 64 isonprize
    February 1, 2012 at 1:35 pm

    LL WOW, just wow. In honor of your brilliant piece I will work even harder to register more people to vote for Pres. Obama.

    I just came in from presenting to parents who have kids with special needs. Along with the familiar that you mentioned, “my families” are just the type of folks that Myth Robme and Leroy GrinchGetRich would just as soon sweep from the face of the earth.

    We must stop their hateful ways and the mean spirited policies that they are working to put in place. The recent actions by the Komen foundation are examples of how their thoughts work against everyday, ordinary Americans.

    LL, Thank you so much for putting your thoughts to paper (or cyberspace, as it were…) My brain is certainly the better for it.

  21. 66 Claire
    February 1, 2012 at 1:35 pm

    I know this is off topic but I am so upset with the Komen decision. Susan G. Komen for the Cure, is halting its partnerships with Planned Parenthood affiliates because of an inquiry initiated by Rep. Cliff Stearns, R-Fla., into whether Planned Parenthood has used public money to provide abortions. MANY low income women use PP for cancer screenings. Komen gave about $680,000 to Planned Parenthood affiliates last year and $580,000 the year before, according to the AP. Planned Parenthood says Komen grants have paid for about 170,000 breast exams in the past five years. That Komen, an organization founded by women would so easily cave to the right wing hate, makes me sick. I have informed Komen that I will no longer participate in the race for the cure nor will I be a donor.

    • February 1, 2012 at 1:39 pm

      The only thing we can do is give PP the resources it needs. As PBO says, we are the change we’ve been waiting for. In the end, we can depend only on each other.

    • 70 isonprize
      February 1, 2012 at 1:42 pm

      Claire, not only cancer screenings, but also STD tests and basic gynecological health exams. Many low-income women of color rely of Planned Parenthood for their health care.

      Komen will never, from this point forward get a penny from me. I will not support any friends who “walk” for them, and I will be sure to tell them this reason why I don’t support Komen. Namely that Komen withdrew funding for basic healthcare service to women.

      I will not buy any products that have the Komen pink ribbon. I think that pink ribbon has just become a marketing ploy anyway, with scant dollars actually going to breast cancer research. But I definitely will not purchase any ‘pink ribbon’ products from now on.

      • 71 Claire
        February 1, 2012 at 1:51 pm

        Couldn’t have stated it better isonprize! I am with you!

      • February 1, 2012 at 3:53 pm

        Right on, isonprize. Komen can stuff it. They have showed they could care less about the women whose lives they’re supposed to be fighting for. I’m going to make sure as many people as I know learn about Komen’s actions and boycott them.

    • 80 Dudette
      February 1, 2012 at 1:43 pm

      Brava, Claire! I echo your sentiments and have already sent some money to Planned Parenthood, as well as a note to Komen why they’ll get no further support from me.

  22. 82 nintendowii10
    February 1, 2012 at 1:37 pm


    • 83 FiredUpInCA
      February 1, 2012 at 2:22 pm

      Thanks for this Nintendowii10. Ed Shultz pointed out that in the last quarter less than 9% of Romney’s donors gave $250 or less in contrast to President’s Obama’s contributors where 98% did so.

      The President attracted 200,000 new donors last quarter just as he did the previous quarter. All the trends are going the right way for the President and a resilient grassroots campaign that will be able to rapidly respond to Willard’s lies and gaffes.

  23. 84 Dudette
    February 1, 2012 at 1:42 pm

    Brilliant LL, just brilliant!!

  24. 85 Bill
    February 1, 2012 at 1:43 pm

    Liberal Librarian,well thought out piece, and I have had similar thoughts when thinking about the results of a possible 2012 Democratic landslide. I think what you are suggesting is a Republican party similar to “conservatives” in Europe, something what would horrify Willard with his averison to anything European. However, your perspective is coming from California, I think, and you may not understand the hate and deep ignorance that still prevails in the south where I live. As we are now witnessing, this attitude, and not only in the south, must be addressed for anyone to capture a Republican nomination. Another concern is I see no one on the Republican horizon leading the Republicans out of their wilderness. Most sensible people are simply going to look towards the Democratic party. I do love your optimism and hope your reasoning prevails. The country needs it.

    • February 1, 2012 at 1:49 pm

      I agree with you Bill, the South is a hard nugget to crack. What I see, though, is an acceleration of a process that began with the Dem victories in 2006 and 2008, where the GOP basically becomes a regional party of the Deep South, speaking only to a certain type of white cultural resentment. Really, I see a complete splintering of the GOP, with a new party being reconstructed on a more moderate, Western basis, which may in time grow to be the moderate conservative opposition to the Democrats. The Democratic Party has been around since Jefferson, and made the transition from being the party of the slaveholders to the party of the 99%. For all its faults, it knows how to reform and rejuvenate itself. The GOP is now the party of the Dixiecrats, and it just won’t last long on that basis.

  25. February 1, 2012 at 1:46 pm

    Really great read LL.

    I have a question for anyone to answer. Now I know Newt says some off-the-wall stuff, but I really would like to know what he meant by President Obama is “destroying religion” in this country? Newt rarely offers a how and why the President is doing something, but I was just wondering if anyone has an idea of what this idiot could mean.

    • February 1, 2012 at 1:50 pm

      I don’t think Newt knows himself what he meant by that. No one’s cornered him to explain himself. It was just another chunk of red meat to throw to his supporters.

    • 89 LOL
      February 1, 2012 at 1:53 pm

      He meant the President respects other religions……besides Christianity. Novel concept, huh?

    • 91 Bill
      February 1, 2012 at 1:57 pm

      Newton Leroy’s latest rant is concerning the administration’s directive that religious organizations must provide for birth control in their health insurance plans for employees.

    • 92 Don
      February 1, 2012 at 1:59 pm

      Sabreen60, to answer that question one must swim in the same waters that Newt has swum in. Newt’s “destroying religion” comment comes from someone that has had three wives and has transverse several religions. In other words, only a fool can understand another fool.

    • 93 FiredUpInCA
      February 1, 2012 at 2:08 pm

      He was most likely referring to the new HHS rule requiring employers to offer birth control coverage to women they employ:

      “At a Monday morning rally at the Hyatt Regency Riverfront in Jacksonville, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich sharply condemned the Obama administration’s recent decision not to exempt religiously-affiliated groups from a rule requiring employers to offer birth control coverage to the women they employ.

      “The Obama administration is engaged in a war against religion,” he said….”

      “Their decision last week that they would impose on every Catholic institution, every Jewish institution, every Protestant institution, the Obamacare standard of what you have to buy as insurance is a direct violation of freedom and religion — an example of the increasingly dictatorial attitude of this administration,” Gingrich said.

      “Cardinal Timothy Dolan has said this is a direct assault of freedom of religion in America and a complete violation of our First Amendment rights,” he added, referencing objections of the new rule by the Catholic Church, of which Gingrich is a member.


    • 94 57andFemale
      February 1, 2012 at 3:05 pm

      Far be it from me to make sense out of anything Newt says, but I think his recent diatribe is about the requirement that Catholic hospitals offer birth control as part of their health care benefits.

      here’s what I don’t get: is anyone forcing Catholics to take birth control? Just don’t get a prescription, if that is your religious belief. But how the eff can you demand that I kowtow to YOUR religious beliefs and you accuse us of being anti-Catholic? You’re anti-everything that doesn’t conform to your religion.

      • February 1, 2012 at 4:25 pm

        If every Catholic family had 20 kids, then they’re “concern” would be more believable. As it is, they’re using birth control, so why deny others? Besides – what business is it of theirs?

  26. 96 LOL
    February 1, 2012 at 1:53 pm

    Back in a place I like to call reality

    The Obama administration announced Wednesday that the Medicare Advantage program, which allows seniors to receive health coverage through a private insurer, is enjoying lower costs and more customers as a result of the health care reform law.

    Medicare Advantage enrollment has risen 10 percent over the last year while average premiums have fallen by 7 percent, said Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius. She also pointed out that similar improvements were seen the previous year.

    Source: http://tpmdc.talkingpointsmemo.com/2012/02/did-health-care-reform-hurt-medicare-advantage-apparently-not.php?ref=fpnewsfeed

      February 1, 2012 at 1:57 pm


    • 98 57andFemale
      February 1, 2012 at 3:48 pm

      We can attest to this. My husband is in a Medicare advantage plan. Thom Hartmann may carry on that insurance companies get rich off these plans but our experience has been completely positive. Thom has misrepresented these plans and he should know better.

      FYI — these plans must offer everything Medicare offers and must also offer more. When we signed up, we were so broke and couldn’t really afford a medigap policy. In a big market like Chicago, we pay NO extra premium above the regular Medicare premium; and even in smaller, more expensive markets the cost is minimal.

      My husband has had excellent care for the last 7 years. He has had two primary doctors, who have been excellent. Referrals have never been a problem, he’s had a few minor surgeries and a colonoscopy, he can see his doctor within hours of calling. His care has been excellent, well-organized, caring. We’re thrilled.

      After ACA was passed and Medicare benefits improved, we saw major changes in the plan — in our favor. A cap on out-of-pocket spending was added. Extra preventive services — even a regular eye exam once a year. 0 co-pays for his primary doctor, twice a year blood work that his doctor wants him to have. When my husband and our two dogs were attacked by a giant pitt bull and a bull dog, after we got the dogs to doggie ER, we went to ER to check out my husband’s scrapes and his knees. $50. When he needed an ER on Christmas Day a year before he was Medicare eligible, after 25 years of paying through the nose for private health insurance and NO claims, BCBS denied his claim for the ER. Wasn’t ‘life-threatening’. He had a pinched nerve in his neck and the pain was so bad his BP was 210/110. As my goddaughter the surgeon said, “That BP reading WAS life-threatening”. But BCBS wouldn’t pop for the one and only claim we had made in 25 years. They certainly weren’t going to cover my asthma, which I paid for out-of-pocket all those years. Now THOSE are crooks.

      In order to compete with a more robust Medicare, the Advantage plans are making it more attractive to stay with the plan. Yes, it’s managed care but there is emphasis on eating right, exercising, and doing what you need to do to get healthy and stay healthy. What’s wrong with that? We have not had one single question on anything his doctors have deemed necessary. Not an ounce of trouble – ever.

      The worst told story in Democratic policy is ACA, particularly with seniors. I remember before the 2010 election: we got our Medicare benefits book the Friday before the election — even someone like me who follows this stuff, didn’t realize how much Medicare had been improved by ACA. No one group benefited as much and as early as seniors — who fell for the lies of Republicans and are still doing it.

      The administration and the DNC should stand proud behind this bill and start changing the narrative. My one disappointment with this administration.

      • February 1, 2012 at 4:14 pm

        57, I’m also on a Medicare Advantage program and completely echo your statement. I’ve never had a procedure questioned and have had nothing but courtesy and helpfulness from the people I call. I have been thinking that the Obama Administration has been waiting for some of the good results to come out of ACA to begin really touting its effectiveness. Slowly people are catching on to the benefits and I would be willing to bet there are going to be lots of advertising from the president’s campaign on this subject in the summer and fall.

      • February 1, 2012 at 4:37 pm

        57 – you should send your story to the White House and Kathleen Sebelius! This is the best testimonial I’ve read about seniors benefiting from ACA. I’m sure that your story would help so many more people. Please send it to them – you’ve expressed it so well.

      • 101 Obama Grandmama
        February 1, 2012 at 10:04 pm

        When I signed up for Medicare last year I had a choice of Original Medicare Part A, B, C, D or Medicare Advantage. I had thought that Medicare Advantage was Republican instigated pandering to the insurance companies giving the insurance companies something like a 12% increase over the regular profits of original medicare. That move decreases the longevity of the Medicare program and gave extra money to the Insurance Companies. I signed up for the original plan not to allow these insurance companies the extra profit.

        I do think the extra profit problem is part of what was handled in the ACA. It may even be part of the complaint against Obama in the Republican complaint ads. I think the 80% to 85% of the money taken in must be used for healthcare purposes that went into practice just in the last few months might have also taken care of this.

    February 1, 2012 at 1:54 pm


  28. February 1, 2012 at 2:08 pm

    Absolutely incredible LL. Thank You So Much. No matter how much the MSM pretends even they know a landslide is coming. In many ways it will not only be the best thing for the country but also the GOP. You will finally get to see something we have not seen in four decades and that is the reemergence of moderate and liberal Republicans who finally will stop being afraid to make their voices heard.

    Reagan Democrats? Try Obama Republicans!!

  29. 106 tally
    February 1, 2012 at 2:10 pm

    everyone needs to go sign this please if they haven’t already:

  30. February 1, 2012 at 2:12 pm

    LL, I have always enjoyed and been illuminated by you comments. This, however, goes beyond excellent. I don’t know of a word to describe it. Like you, I am not as dismayed by all of the Republican nonsense as many people are. That is because, quite simply, there is nothing new in any of this since the Reagan revolution. Of course, prior to now, it was much better camouflaged, whereas now it is right out there in the open for everybody to see.

    And a disease, which is exactly what I would call the current manifestation of what passes for conservatism in this country, must be noticed before I can be treated. As you say, it will be good to have a conservative movement in this country that actually has a sense of sanity at its core. I have no doubt that there are some Republicans who fit that mold, even some that are in public office. But instead of denouncing what we are seeing, they, like all cowards, have allowed themselves to be bullied into submission.

    In 2007, when then Senator Obama announced his candidacy for President, a lot of people thought he was doing it too soon, that he should wait 4 or 8 years. But he himself, in addressing that very question, said he had decided that this was exactly the right moment for him to run. I think his brief stint in the Senate gave him an idea of what was to come from the Republicans and made a vow to do his best to expose it to the American people. And his first term has been devoted to doing exactly that. Unfortunately, due to faint hearts on the left (not here though) he was unable to prevent what happened in 2010. On the other side of the coin, however, the Republicans saw 2010 as a vindication of all they have been working for and brought out into the open all their, to be honest, evilness. That camouflage has been torn away and they have been exposed for just what they are, power hungry lizards who really don’t give a damn about this country or the people who live here.

    And this is why it is so important the we work not just for President Obama’s reelection, but work hard to make sure that at all levels, from Congress down to school boards, this cancer is removed from our national body. Winning is not good enough, it must be a trouncing of epic proportions. Republican voters have long had an ability to be in denial about what the party is doing to them. We must spread far and wide exactly what cockroaches, of Kochroaches if you prefer, they really are. And to that end, I have a couple suggestions.

    Whenever somebody complains, for example, about all the benefits public workers enjoy that they don’t, inform them that they have a right to be upset, but not at the workers but at the private sector which has refused to provide them with those benefits. The question is not “Why do those people have benefits I don’t have?” but “Why don’t I have the benefits those people have?”

    Secondly, whenever you here somebody say, “That is good news for Obama” answer by saying, “No, that is good news for the country.” And conversely, when somebody says “That is good news for Romney or Gingrich or the Republicans” respond by saying “No, that is bad nr the country.”

    • February 1, 2012 at 2:21 pm

      Clapclapclapclap!!! Just spot on. People need to realize that this isn’t just another election with an interchangeable cast of characters. This is literally a battle for the country’s soul. No one can stay neutral.

    • February 1, 2012 at 2:28 pm

      And, furthermore, I didn’t know about that quote from then-Senator Obama. Which just goes to bolster one of my main arguments: PBO’s goal isn’t just to win a couple of elections, but to eviscerate the Brown Shirts that are rising to take this Republic to a very dark place.

    • February 1, 2012 at 4:20 pm

      Japa, very insightful. In retrospect it may be the 2010 elections that finally lifted the lid off the slime and showed the world what the GOP has truly become. There have been insidious attempts to disguise what they are over the years and now it’s there for all to see. The 2010 election made the GOP arrogant and they misread its meaning. They can’t put on their invisibility cloaks anymore because now we’ve seen them in all their ugliness.

  31. 112 eveingeorgia
    February 1, 2012 at 2:15 pm

    Oh wow! Liberal Librarian. Just awesome. As someone else has said, you should submit this to major papers and blogs.

    I’d love to see it at NYT and WaPO, The Daily Beast ( Andrew’s site, especially ).

    I’m saving it. There is something so gratifying hearing one’s own thoughts expressed so well. Thank you, thank you!

  32. February 1, 2012 at 2:16 pm

    The Hedge Fund Candidate

    Well at least we now know a bit about who gave Romney the money to carpet-bomb Gingrich in Florida, and Wall Street was high on the list. I love this detail:

    One of the Goldman executives who donated to Restore Our Future, Jim Donovan, is the same person who handles the Romney family’s considerable investments with the firm, which total as much as $36.7 million.

    But the idea of any “coordination” between them is preposterous. Bonus nugget: another Adelson, Sivan Ochshorn, gave to Gingrich. We really have returned to the days when political candidates were run and financed by plutocrats. From the small donors of the Obama campaign in 2008 to the Wall Street financiers of 2012 – all made possible by a Republican majority on the Supreme Court.

    And what do Romney and Gingrich promise? An end to re-regulating Wall Street and a return to the wild days before the Great Recession.


    • 116 Ladyhawke
      February 1, 2012 at 2:43 pm

      THE REPUBLICAN PARTY WANTS TO GO BACK TO: “legalized gambling, bribery and dark-alley trading”

      Why won’t he perpwalk them!!!


      And so we have – or at least had – prior to the Dodd-Frank Act – legalized gambling, bribery and dark-alley trading. This is what was accomplished by 8 years of Reagan, 12 years of the Bushes, and I’m sorry to say, the Clinton years. President Clinton did a lot of good things for our country and for that he is to be commended, but by signing the repeal of Glass-Steagall into law, dismantling the last of the protections that the American people had built themselves in the aftermath of the Great Depression. This repeal let banks essentially do whatever they wanted and make up any financial … umm… “product” that they wanted. Bill Clinton was not the only Democratic accomplice in that horrendous surrender to the banking industry. Here is the Congressional final vote on the repeal:



  33. February 1, 2012 at 2:22 pm

    Excellent piece, LL. Just spot on.

    • 122 donna dem 4 obama
      February 1, 2012 at 2:42 pm

      What Chris says here is so very profound. Those who have will pay for those who do not have either way. You either pay on the front end or you pay on the back end. There is essentially no getting around it.

      If the homeless take over your community you can ignore them until they take a toll on your community and then you have to ante up.

      When people have no health insurance you can ignore them until they show up in the emergency room and then our tax dollars go to pay for their limited care.

      You can let a recession destroy the housing market just allowing it to bottom out or you can implement programs that help homeowners keep afloat so that we all can maintain the value in our homes.

      Dems believe that we are here to pay-it-forward for the greater good of society and Repubs believe that you pay yourself and let everyone else fend for themselves. Now isn’t that one hellava philosophy.

      • February 1, 2012 at 2:55 pm

        oh so right Donna- we all pay one way or another.. better to pay ahead and lessen the cost to all involved and lessen the pain more importantly. Loved Chris’ comments too.

      • February 1, 2012 at 3:00 pm

        It’s basically preventative medicine. Do you want to spend a little money to do the things that will keep your society healthy from the beginning? Or do you want things to get progressively worse because for the time being you can afford to ignore it, until the situation becomes unbearable and you have to spend an order of magnitude more to return things to the previous status quo?

  34. 129 overseasgranny
    February 1, 2012 at 2:46 pm

    LL, Well said and beautifully written. Applause from here.

  35. February 1, 2012 at 2:51 pm

    Holy smokes, Liberal Librarian- this is indeed a masterpiece of insight and intellect.. and frankly uplifting imo. Well said in all respects. Thank you for sharing it, and thank you Chips for posting it.

  36. February 1, 2012 at 2:54 pm

    bravo bravo bravo

    thank you thank you thank you

  37. 132 meabloom
    February 1, 2012 at 2:59 pm

    LL, I had to read this to my grandmother. She and I both agree that you hit the nail square on the head.

  38. February 1, 2012 at 3:13 pm

    Snoop dog just endorsed Ron Paul!
    Because he wants to get high.

    You know what…?

  39. 137 donna dem 4 obama
    February 1, 2012 at 3:21 pm

    Apparently Jim Demint just made this statement??

  40. February 1, 2012 at 3:22 pm

  41. February 1, 2012 at 3:23 pm

  42. February 1, 2012 at 3:25 pm

    The proposed Mortgage plans that the President is sending to Congress, is paid for by a tax on financial industry.


  43. 143 vero804
    February 1, 2012 at 3:30 pm

    I am representing an uninsured individual who was in a car accident. He’s ok, for the most part. The ER just sent us his bill. Mind you, the client did not stay over night. He received a CT scan to his head and body and some other tests, then released to follow up with his primary care provider (which he doesn’t have since he’s uninsured). Anyway, the grand total……………………..$26,000.

    If I can’t win his case for him, someone is going to pay for it, and I doubt he will be able to.

    • February 1, 2012 at 3:31 pm

      Wow. Just, wow. And this is what the GOP wants for the country.

      • 145 overseasgranny
        February 1, 2012 at 3:45 pm

        Now. Now. Take your Socratic oath to become a billionaire and be happy.

      • 146 SUE DUVALL SMITH
        February 1, 2012 at 3:50 pm


    • 147 overseasgranny
      February 1, 2012 at 3:43 pm

      Now that is horrifying. here in Ireland, if you come in by ambulance, the ER is free, otherwise 50 Euro. The max you will be charged if hospitalized is 75 Euro a day for a max of 10 days, or 750 Euro for your bed. If you stay longer, it is free. That’s it!
      $26,000 for a couple of hours and a scan. Criminal.

      • February 1, 2012 at 4:28 pm

        OG, sounds like heaven in Ireland. US health insurance is a nightmare for the uninsured and under insured. Think of the massive lowering of blood pressure throughout the US if we had a health care payment system similar to Irelands. Wow!

        • 149 overseasgranny
          February 1, 2012 at 4:45 pm

          Jackie, We are having problems with the health service right now, but not the cost to the patient. The hospitals’ budgets are way out of control and the managers aren’t cutting what should be cut and saving what needs to be saved. We might have an ugly couple of years to get this fixed right.

    • 150 donna dem 4 obama
      February 1, 2012 at 3:46 pm

      Well there ya go!

      This is exactly my point.

      BTW Hi Vero. I thought about you and VAgg when I saw that tremendous turnout for the opening of the new Richmond OFA office last Saturday. They said over 500 volunteers showed up. VA is Fired Up!!!

      • 151 vero804
        February 1, 2012 at 5:21 pm

        Hey! I was out of town, but my candidate who’s running against Cantor was at the opening. He said it was great to see so many people there! There’s pictures of him there on his facebook page…check him out. Search “Wayne Powell” on FB.

    • 152 Dudette
      February 1, 2012 at 3:48 pm

      That is obscene!

    • 153 57andFemale
      February 1, 2012 at 4:00 pm

      My husband’s bill for ER when he and the dogs were attacked: First of all, he wasn’t injured. I just wanted to make sure he was okay, and it was 6:30 p.m. on Mother’s Day, a Sunday. He was scraped and he has bad knees and was dragged by the pit bull who was ripping at my little 14-pound Kasper and my husband tried to hold on and not rip the little guy apart. The ER cleaned up his many scrapes, took x-rays of his knees, made sure his vitals were okay.

      The bill read as follows: Services rendered: $2,000 (!) “Discount to Humana Advantage plan: $1,500. Billed to Humans: $450. Co-pay: $50.

      Now read between the lines of that bill: there were not $2,000 worth of actual services rendered. The actual cost was $500, but because of insurance running this country, bills are padded beyond what regular people can weather.

      I am not insured (I really need to check Illinois’ plan for pre-existing conditions. It was unaffordable 5 years ago, but should be affordable now, thanks to ACA). Had I needed the services my husband needed, I would have gotten a bill for $2,000.

      Before everyone asks: we almost lost Kasper. He was ripped apart but luckily no organs. He had three emergency surgeries in 5 days, infected wounds but we were blessed to have a wonderful doggie ER a few blocks from our house (and we had doggie insurance). The other doggie, Nickelby, had a small bite from the bull dog but was okay. My husband was able to get everyone home so I could take care of them all. Kasper is now his usual, feisty self and doing great, after 3 months of nursing.

  44. February 1, 2012 at 3:37 pm

    Thanks to everyone for answering my question re Newt’s destruction of religion comment. I should have known it had something to do with a woman’s right to choose and that he’s an idiot.

  45. February 1, 2012 at 3:45 pm

    On a rainy day here, I got myself comfortable with green tea in hand getting myself ready to read Liberal L’s post. I felt like I was reading something Steve Benen put together 🙂 It was just THAT great! Thank you so much for sharing

  46. February 1, 2012 at 4:05 pm

    “ But the next conservative movement that arises will not be one that gets built up to undo the achievements of liberal governance; it will be a movement that will perforce accept the broad outlines of liberal programs; it will just claim that it can run them more efficiently, at less cost.

    ……… voters will expect nothing less from a party that wishes to govern.”

    Late to the dance though I am, LL, allow me to say ‘Thank you!’ I am particularly appreciative of the ending you shared – the ‘hope’ it contains, as well as you highlighting that President Obama has kept his promise to bring ‘change’ to the American political scene. Thanks for your willingness to share your insight into how the 2012 election will end.

  47. 159 nabsentia23
    February 1, 2012 at 5:05 pm

    Great analysis, Liberal Librarian.

    However, this moment doesn’t just parallel what happened in the ’80s with Reagan. It also parallels with what happened between 1968-72.

    Politics is cyclical.

  48. February 1, 2012 at 6:43 pm

    Liberal Librarian you have done all of us a world of good with this positive, insightful and I hope, prescient, characterization of the political scene we are currently suffering through. Your writing is cogent, well-organized and paints in a reasoned way a picture of the decline of the hateful fascists in all of their retrograde glory. I tend not to be positive, but you present your case in a way that makes me feel it is safe to believe that we can succeed in a fight to re-elect what is best about this country. Thank you. And thank you to Ms. Chips for making your words an ongoing feature of her important blog.

  49. 161 sjterrid
    February 1, 2012 at 11:14 pm

    LL, Your comment was brilliant.
    I don’t comment often, but I love coming to the site everyday because there are so many excellent people writing here or posting great links.
    Thank you Chips for creating this great community.

  50. 162 susanne
    February 11, 2012 at 4:00 am

    hi lib-lib
    i finally got a chance to really read your piece through, and i’m grateful for your unflinching analysis. just thinking about your final point, and the rethugs’ apparent lack of interest in the future, evidenced by their willingness to say or do anything to get elected. it occurs to me this perspective arises from the bottom-line business model, which rewards short term gains and disregards long term impacts.

    i’ve never understood why a business background would be seen as preparation for public office–except for the voters who want to see business interests advanced. after all, business has the express purpose of exploitation, whereas government is designed to prevent abuses of power. yes, it helps to have supervised staff, but the mentality of business is antithetical to that of public service.

    so we have romney who is oblivious to the looks of horror when he speaks to an audience, because he probably actually believes the business model is the ideal. lie, cheat, manipulate, exploit, then celebrate. not an entirely stupid man, but acting like an idiot, in part because the quarterly bottom line model has formed a kink in his brain.

    best wishes with your new gig! look forward to seeing more of your writing. you made me think, and thinking is good!

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