The sad reality is with a $16 trillon debt, each man, woman and child of this nation’s 320 million citizens is in debt for $50,0000. That includes you and I, our kids, legal residents, and our parents.
The 2nd sad reality is that based on reports released on 9/26/2012 from the Social Security Trustee committee, SS will be insolvent two years sooner than originally estimated.
It is difficult to figure out why many Americans have not done the math or have elected to wear blinders on their eyes when it comes to these two issues.
Politicians are easy to figure out. Many lack true leadership capabilities or are more worried about kicking the “can” down the road for the next guy. I know the difficulties that are faced when decisions have to be made on spending programs. No matter where the cuts occur, someone has a legitimate need for the money that affects their life in the most basic form.
The fisrt task is to show the American people what the facts are on the debt and the peril we are putting our kids and grand kids in. I don’t think many will approve of the picture that is painted.
Spread the word.
I want to start this post by disclosing that my son is a gay man. I will also stipulate that when he came out of the “closet” it was difficult for me to take but I knew some day the reality would have to be dealt with. Like a lot of heterosexual men that have children and specifically boys, I had hopes of carrying on my genes and family name through my son (yes I know my genes carry on through my daughter whom I am also very proud to be a parent of).
After we had and continue to have conversations about the topic, I have learned much about the gay male community and a little about the lesbian community including the struggles with certain protections that are afforded to heterosexual couples.
As a man raised on biblical principals and someone that strives to live to a high standard as outlined in the bible, I had a long and arduous journey when it comes to the matter of marriage and other rights. My son and his past partner would discuss the topic at length with me and did so with respect to each other’s views.
I believe in rights being protected for individuals so they can grow, prosper, and feel secure during their life.
I support and will defend the passage of Federal Legislation legalizing Civil Unions so that LGT couples may have all of the rights, protections, and privileges afforded heterosexual couples.
I have to respectfully not support calling the Civil Union a marriage.
The rights are what I want protected, nomenclature will come over time. I understand the resistance of many well intended people of faith objecting from a religious standpoint to the use of marriage being used to describe a group of rights. To many, marriage is a religious institution that has been codified by government.
I recommend that every Republican, Libertarian, and other party member promote legislation for Civil Unions at their earliest convenience.
Many in the LGBT community will hate this idea and rail against it and call it hate speech but the fact is the rights are what are important right now. Why not get progress moving even faster than it is already.
Speak you mind via the comments,
Author: Anthony Galvez
Protests, Then and Now. Who is really the scariest?
To all those that may think the Tea-Party or “tea-baggers” as they are affectionately called by many are dangerous or instill fear in the nation by their signs or comments, I have done some research to see if a few of their event attendees hold the Patent on poor judgement or alleged “hate speech” through their signs and or rhetoric.
Don’t think that this is an excuse for poor judgement by any event attendee (be them conservative or liberal in their viewpoints). This is a reality check for any that think the level of rhetoric in our country has changed due to who is in the office of the President.
The photo above is of a protester at the 2008 RNC convention. You know, the one where rioters broke windows of store fronts, lit fires on trash cans, and threw debris at the police. He must have been a future “tea-bagger” trying some reverse psychology on his own party. This couldn’t be a motivated Democrat, environmental activist, or the victim of Community Organization endeavors, could it?
Are there conservatives or attendees at conservative minded events that make outlandish statements or have less than appropriately minded signs to promote their cause? YES THERE ARE!!!!!
Are they the norm? No more than this kid who likely was not a supporter of President Bush or Palin or McCain.
Let’s get real and stop the fear mongering.
Author: Anthony Galvez
Health Care Reform, No Problem, Just Read It and Vote
This is not a rant solely against the health care reform law. It is an indication of what our legislators on both sides of the isle are doing on the job when they write legislation. I focused on this portions of the health care reform law because of its reach and complexity but most legislation is written in the same fashion.
I perform contract administration tasks as an integral part of my business and make sure the Contract parties execute what is in the Contract. We will make some simple assumptions in this article for role players in the new Reform Law (aka Contract that all parties must abide by) as follows:
Executor (Contract Administrator): The President’s administration in its entirety,
The Law (The Contract the parties must abide by) : ”Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act of 2010’’
Parties (Stakeholders) to the agreement: All citizens of the United States, Health Care Insurers, Physicians, and Hospitals for the most part.
That was easy enough. Now, let’s administer this jewel. Here is the text that is the first order of business addressed in the law as presented on pages 2 and 3 of this 55 page reconciliation document. I am sure that all of our legislators can determine the appropriate credit for you and I.
TITLE I—COVERAGE, MEDICARE, MEDICAID, AND REVENUES
SEC. 1001. TAX CREDITS.
(a) PREMIUM TAX CREDITS.—Section 36B of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, as added by section 1401 of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act and amended by section 10105 of such Act, is amended— (1) in subsection (b)(3)(A)—
(A) in clause (i), by striking ‘‘with respect to any taxpayer’’ and all that follows up to the end period and inserting: ‘‘for any taxable year shall be the percentage such that the applicable percentage for any taxpayer whose household income is within an income tier specified in the following table shall increase, on a sliding scale in a linear manner, from the initial premium percentage to H. R. 4872—3 the final premium percentage specified in such table for such income tier:
‘‘In the case of household income (expressed as a percent of poverty line) within the following income tier:
The initial premium percentage is— The final premium percentage is—
Up to 133% 2.0% 2.0%
133% up to 150% 3.0% 4.0%
150% up to 200% 4.0% 6.3%
200% up to 250% 6.3% 8.05%
250% up to 300% 8.05% 9.5%
300% up to 400% 9.5% 9.5%’’; and
(B) by striking clauses (ii) and (iii), and inserting the following:
‘‘(I) IN GENERAL.—Subject to subclause (II), in the case of taxable years beginning in any calendar year after 2014, the initial and final applicable percentages under clause (i) (as in effect for the preceding calendar year after application of this clause) shall be adjusted to reflect the excess of the rate of premium growth for the preceding
calendar year over the rate of income growth for the preceding calendar year.
‘‘(II) ADDITIONAL ADJUSTMENT.—Except as provided in subclause (III), in the case of any calendar year after 2018, the percentages described in subclause (I) shall, in addition to the adjustment under subclause (I), be adjusted to reflect the excess (if any) of the rate of premium growth estimated under subclause (I) for the preceding calendar
year over the rate of growth in the consumer price index for the preceding calendar year.
‘‘(III) FAILSAFE.—Subclause (II) shall apply for any calendar year only if the aggregate amount of premium tax credits under this section and cost sharing reductions under section 1402 of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act for the preceding calendar year exceeds an amount equal to 0.504 percent of the gross domestic product
for the preceding calendar year.’’; and
There was actually more to this small portion of the legislation’s page 3, but I didn’t have the will to make you endure it.
Alrighty then, let’s look at this logically. We know that the legislators don’t write the bills because of time and competency as most legislation is exacting in language. They delegate the task to aids, lobbyists, PACS, special interest groups, and all others that want the legislation to pass. The language must amend any prior laws that may be contradicted and the language must gain the support of the other legislators (note that a majority of Stakeholders need not support it, just the legislators)
Whom among you can say that you have confidence that your Representative or Senator could determine the Tax Credit calculation without the aid of others? If you answered mine can, you are likely very confident in the abilities of your agents in Washington DC or your state. If you answered mine can’t, you are likely accurate in your assessment of your agent in DC or your state.
The President has put his appointees for consumer protection initiatives on the news telling us that our credit card and mortgage applications and contracts should be no more than two pages and understood by a high school graduate with a 9o% comprehension level. They believe this will make our consumers less likely to make bad decisions or be mis-lead during the purchase.
Sadly, I suspect no more than 10% of the US population meet that standard. That said, I suspect less than 4% of the population could read the legislation above, refer to the affected legislation as amended, and determine anyone’s credit.
How can any sane person believe that this legislation is more positive than negative. There are positive parts of this legislation that I support and would admonish others for not supporting, but you cannot vote affirmative and then enact (sign) a bill simply because it has some good parts. That is like meeting someone on a weekend, finding out they are gainfully employed, have $10K in their checking account, they are a 7 of 10 on your scale for physical appearance and they go to church, so you marry them.
You find out after the ceremony on the honeymoon they earn minimum wage on a part time job, just received $10k as an inheritance from their grandmother, recently completed 4 plastic surgeries (including a sex change), and are the only survivors of the Branch Davidian church that arrived late at the Waco complex. They met your short list of good character traits/stats as a partner in your future.
That may sound a little extreme but no one can say in good faith that this Law is the compilation of a careful thought process to establish provision to address a problem, namely high insurance premiums that make private health care less accessible to 30 million +/- Americans and legal residents.
If you have a comment, post it, if not, accept what you just received.
Contrary to the speech you hear from those in Washington, neither party has a problem with lobbyists. They have a problem with lobbyists that oppose their specific agenda. Republicans may object to the Lawyer lobby and Democrats may object to a Commerce (Insurance, Pharmaceutical, Medical care providers) lobby. Neither opposes Lobbyists in principle because they can be a source of campaign contributions and an honest representation of their constituency’s views and opinions.
This is my view on lobbyists. The American people have nothing to fear from lobbyists, they should fear their elected politicians that vote contrary to their constituent’s best interest because of a lobbyists influence. I’ve had this discussion with friends and most fall into the trap that says lobbyists are terrible and need to be stopped or eliminated.
I have never seen a lobbyist issued a voter’s card. I have never seen a corporation (I own one and haven’t received my registration card) issued a voter’s card. I have never seen a union head or another group issued a voter’s card. Lobbyists and corporations cannot vote, period. The individual Lobby-er can as a citizen but his group has no voting power.
Lobbyists represent Unions, Businesses, medical causes, environmental causes, senior citizens, minor children advocates, charities of all sorts. Each has a reason to petition for their client’s cause. The fact is that anyone that has ever communicated with their Congressional representative is a lobbyist.
Our elected representatives are the people that matter. We need to elect people that promote what we want to get done. I have no problem with my representative meeting with special interest groups as long as they are relative to my needs. If they meet with someone, let us know who you’re meeting with and who they represent. If you get a contribution from someone or something (lobby group), report it, and I mean all of it. Ignore the size limits permitted by the FEC that allows non disclosure if the amount is below some amount (let’s say $250.00 as an example). If you get a contribution, report it no matter how small.
If your representative doesn’t tell you who they meet with and what was received and what was discussed, you need to talk with your Representative. A lot of detail on the discussions is not the goal, but topics discussed should be disclosed.
We do not need laws for this issue, we need to elect Representatives that will unilaterally enact these policies because they are the right thing to do.
You are the kings/queens of your own kingdom.
Step up and rule.
Author: Anthony Galvez
I do not want to hear Republicans crying about the Slaughter Rule!
I want them to gather every Democrat and Independent and repeal this rule and denounce any instance that used it.
The majority of the Congressmen are lawyers or should have understood rules by shear osmosis from hanging around their lawyer associates. They should understand rules. They should understand that anything you will use can and will be used against you.
Each Congressman (I do not have the time to be gender neutral) should have a press conference and request for this rule to be repealed and denounce its use on principal. No grandstanding on how evil the other party was for when they used it. THE AMERICAN PEOPLE DON’T CARE ABOUT THEN, THEY CARE ABOUT NOW.
None of the Congressmen can take the high ground on being the purest servant of the people to ever grace the office. Each has their weaknesses and have been human and made mistakes. NOW IS THE TIME TO WALK TALL.
I doubt if any constituent will hold it against his/her Congressman for standing for what is the only sensible thing to do. Imagine if your kids or an employee (which a Congressman is) tried to take this route on responsibility?
I do not support the legislation as it is in either body of the Congress, but I would have denounced this long ago if I knew it was a ploy used by either party.
Refute this if you dare and tell your kids about how you support anything like this.
Author: Anthony Galvez
We have all heard from the President and the Democrats in the Congress that those waskilly Medical Insurance companies are making outlandish profits by mistreating their customers, namely us. The $12+ billion value is used most often.
I decided to see just how treacherous this group was and did some investigating. It turns out, the $12 billion value is correct for 2009 annual profits for the major providers in the US that provide the lion’s share of the coverage.
Man oh man does that sound like a lot of money. Let’s take a look at that for a minute. One of the most frequent complaints lodged by the President and the Democrats is the immoral profits that insurers make.
Let us presume that 275 million people of the United States are insured (we won’t say citizens because not all of the insured are citizens). We will agree to the figure thrown out by many supporters of the current health care legislation now under consideration by the Congress that 40 million are uninsured. That doesn’t affect the math but I don’t want anyone saying we are ignoring the facts.
Let’s dissect this into simple terms. $12,200,000,000 divided by 275,000,000. You take the outlandish profit and divide it by the number of people they have allegedly bilked out of a lot of money. Let’s do the math, you don’t need a fancy calculator. You can use the one on your cell phone.
- Let’s take those 6 zeros off of both numbers. 12,200,000,000 and 275,000,000
- That leaves 12,200 divided by 275
- That equals $44.36 profit per patient per year per insured.
Chuck Schumer scored a perfect 1600 on his SAT so I am surprised he never brought this fact to light.
Still, it is profit. So let’s see what they do to earn that money.
- They have to get investors to give them money to open the Company,
- They have to jump through bureaucratic hoops in each state to do business,
- The have to comply with regulations that change (sometimes often and sometimes not often),
- They have to clearly figure out what they can afford to offer their customers so they can 1) know what their liabilities will be and 2) make sure they have the money to pay for it,
- They have to advertise to customers to provide this service/product because they don’t have a monopoly, they have some competition,
- They have to get doctors to agree to take what they want to pay for a service (this helps them be competitive with other Insurers),
- They have to hire employees (our fellow citizens) to handle all of the paperwork that is required to comply with the regulations from the State and Federal agencies,
- They have to hire employees (more of our fellow citizens) to process the claims from their customers, us.
- They have to do some tough decision making on who they can cover based on their respective health (pre-existing conditions) to make sure they have enough money to pay the bills of all of their customers and keep the company running for another day.
- They have to set a limit on how much they can pay for any one person’s care. The sad truth is that no matter how much the Government or an Insurer wants to take care of someone, there is a point that no amount of money will save the patient.
I agree that the health care system and insurance policies needs to be reformed. I agree that there are some insurers that will deny coverage when they are obliged to cover the patient. Medicaid and Medicare decline procedures also to contain costs. To our politicians (Republicans and Democrats alike), please lead us on the basis that we are smart enough to understand an issue on its merit, not its rhetoric.
What I don’t agree with is the use of figures to distort the facts for a cause. Insurers and Petroleum companies are the easiest targets because what they provide, we can’t live without for the most part and most Americans have to work to get ahead and it is not easy.
Let’s legislate to end worst practices. Let’s not legislate to look good for our neighbors, but provide no tangible benefit for them.
I will happily pay my $45 in profit for the services provided to me. For all those that will review the number of insured that I used, let me save you some time. If the number of insured is 1/2 of what I estimated, that only makes it $90 in profit per year. Still no problem for me. Sorry to disappoint the people that like to misrepresent the facts.