Sam Seder filling in for Cenk Uygur on The Young Turks takes a call from a conservative who resents paying for health care for his fellow citizens, but doesn't mind paying for the Iraq War. Why in the hell is this man not on the radio every day of the week?
Larry King Live has a sneak peak at the premier of Michael Moore's new movie, Capitalism: A Love Story.
Even after admitting that Tom Ridge's revelations that he felt the terrorist threat level was being used for political purposes was pretty stunning, Matthews and his guests go on to just diminish this as politics as usual and some kind of running joke they were all in on. Too bad the media didn't treat it as such when it was occurring instead of doing their part to help scare the crap out of gullible Americans who didn't see right through this stuff. And this is not politics as usual. It's criminal. But our media treats the criminal as politics as usual, so sadly their reaction isn't surprising.
From The Daily Show:
Barney Frank confronts a Nazi name-calling protester at a health care reform town hall meeting.
August 19, 2009 News Corp
VAN SUSTEREN: Voters want answers on health care. What they don't want is for the Democrats to go it alone. Now, according to one poll, 59 percent of people say Congress should not approve a health care plan if it's not bipartisan. But will the Democrats go it alone anyway, shut Republicans out of the health care debate? The New York Times reports that Democrats do not think the GOP is going to cooperate on health care reform. The Times quotes White House chief of staff Rahm Emanuel as saying, "The Republican leadership has made a strategic decision that defeating President Obama's health care proposal is more important for their political goals than solving the health insurance problems that Americans face every day."
In a press briefing today, White House press secretary Robert Gibbs pulled back from the report.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
ROBERT GIBBS, WHITE HOUSE PRESS SECRETARY: We are focused on a process that continues in the Senate with both parties. The president again met with Senator Baucus on Friday in Montana, and they discussed the progress that was being made among Democrats and Republicans on the Finance Committee. That's our focus.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VAN SUSTEREN: Senator Chuck Grassley is ranking Republican member of the "Gang of six," a bipartisan group of senators working for a deal in the Senate on the health care bill. and according to The New York Times, the White House sees criticism by Senator Grassley as a sign there is little hope of reaching a bipartisan deal. Is that true?
Senator Grassley joins us live. Good evening, Senator. And is there little hope of a bipartisan deal, sir?
SEN. CHARLES GRASSLEY (R), IOWA: I haven't given up yet, and I haven't said anything new since we adjourned for the summer break that I've been saying for the last three months. So for the White House to draw any conclusions other than what I've told the president right to his face -- and I've said a couple things that are very important, and I've said them before. I've told him for several weeks that, number one, it would really help get bipartisanship if he would make a statement that he would sign a bill that didn't have a public option, or what some of us call a government-run health plan, in it.
And the second one was, in response to a question he asked me about would I be (ph) three or four Republicans going along with the Democrats to make a bipartisan issue, and on that issue, I answered him the same way I've been telling a lot of people for three or four months, that I would not go along because that's not bipartisan.
What you have to have when you're rejiggering one sixth of our U.S. economy, and when you're dealing with health care because that's life-and- death issue for every American, affecting every American citizen, it's got to be done with lots of Democrats and a lot of Republicans, and that's bipartisanship. And it's my responsibility to do something that would get broad support among Republicans, and it's Senator Baucus's Republican to get something that would get broad support among Democrats.
August 19, 2009 CNN
KING: In Raleigh, North Carolina, Elizabeth Edwards, senior fellow at the Center for American Progress, primarily focusing on health care issues. She's the wife of the former Democratic vice presidential candidate, John Edwards, and "The New York Times" best-selling author of "Resilience."
And Madison, Wisconsin, Tommy Thompson, who was the secretary of Health and Human Services under President George W. Bush and is the former Republican governor of Wisconsin.
Elizabeth, in an interview last month, you said you thought substantial -- substantive health care reform would be enacted.
Do you stand by that?
ELIZABETH EDWARDS, SENIOR FELLOW, CENTER FOR AMERICAN PROGRESS, AUTHOR, "RESILIENCE": I still do. I'm incredibly optimistic. And I think the American people are still in favor of health care reform, despite the assault they've had of a lot of hyperbole and misstatements. And people know, in their real lives, that -- that they need -- that they're going to need change -- we're going to need change in health care, nationally and in their own communities and in their own families. KING: Tommy, in an interview with Dr. Val Jones, the CEO of Better Health -- that's a medical blog or education network -- in February, you said you can bet your bottom dollar that the health care system that we know today is going to be changed so considerably that I doubt you'd recognize it a year from now.
Do you stand by that?
TOMMY THOMPSON, FORMER SECRETARY HEALTH & HUMAN SERVICES: I stand by it because it already has many changes. In the stimulus package, there was a comparative equivalences. There's $20 billion set aside for electronic medical records. There is a lot of other projects that have been already passed that's going to transform health care in the future.
The truth of the matter is and I think the question you're getting at is what about the Barack Obama legislation and what the Democrats are doing in Congress?
I think the Democrats are going to have a very difficult time passing a comprehensive bill unless they want to bring in the Republicans and scale back and have a really comprehensive bipartisan bill. And that's what I'm hoping they will, because I believe that Elizabeth and I both agree that there needs to be comprehensive health care reform in America.
But the kind of comprehensive health care reform is what really is going to be the most important item. And I hope that it's a bipartisan one that I think can be passed energetically and have a great deal of support in the country.
August 19, 2009 MSNBC
SCHULTZ: Welcome back THE Ed Show. Got some advice for the Obama White House, you dance with the one who brought you. Progressives put the president in office. All last year, they knocked on doors, raised money, got out the vote, did it all. So comments like this really burn me up. Here`s an anonymous Obama adviser quoted in the "Washington Post" today: "I don`t understand why the left of the left has decided that this is their Waterloo, said a senior White House adviser, who spoke on the condition of anonymity. We`ve gotten to the point where health care on the left is determined by the breadth of the public option. I don`t understand how that has become the measure of whether what we achieve is health care reform."
OK, this is what`s known as a five-second cooling off period.
I wonder where the left of the left got the idea that a public option was key to health care reform.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
OBAMA: I also strongly believe that one of the options in the exchange should be a public insurance option.
An option out there for people where the free market fails.
We should have a public plan to compete with the private plans. But, you know, these private insurance companies are always telling me what a great deal that they give to the American consumer. If it`s such a great deal, why are they worried about competing against the public plan?
We will not sign a bill that isn`t right for the American people. And I`m for the public option.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
SCHULTZ: Joining me now is Congressman Dennis Kucinich, vice chair of the Progressive Caucus. Congressman, great to have you back on THE ED SHOW.
REP. DENNIS KUCINICH (D), OHIO: Great to be with you,Ed.
SCHULTZ: Is the president playing this correctly? Is he patience going to pay off? Or is it time for him to get tough with Republicans, in your opinion?
KUCINICH: First of all, you raised a question about the left. And I think it is all about the left. It`s about 47 million left without insurance, about another 50 million left as uninsured. Millions left bankrupt because they can`t afford to pay hospital bills. It`s about what`s left.
I think that the president needs to go back to the drawing board actually, because the only true public option that will work is HR 676, the bill that I drafted with John Conyers, which is a single-payer, not-for- profit bill, that recognizes that one out of every three dollars in the system goes for the activities of the for-profit system. This is what the whole fight is about.
It`s about a fight over 800 billion dollars. And the insurance companies will stop at nothing to hold on to the American people`s wallet when it comes to health insurance.
Where to even begin with this segment from MSNBC's Morning Meeting. I've really got to wonder if a single one of these people has ever done a hard day of physical labor in their entire lives to be able to carry on trashing unions the way they did.
First, Dylan Ratigan asks if unions are against health-care reform because everyone having health-care benefits would mean union members' benefits are no longer better than other non-union members' benefits, and of course the only thing unions care about is getting bigger. Ratigan doesn't seem to understand that those benefits are bargained for and part of an overall compensation package, and that if we weren't having to bargain for the health-care benefits, that would likely play out in being able to negotiate for higher take-home pay or some other benefit instead.
He also ignores the fact that this would be good for unionized companies if the burden of paying health-care expenses were taken off of their backs, which would make them more competitive, thus also benefiting the workers at those companies. Bernard follows with this:
Absolutely, the labor unions right now simply exist for one reason. To self perpetuate receiving union dues and having political influence. I think it's absolutely amazing to watch that clip from The Rachel Maddow Show last night. This guy is, he's saying to President Obama, I'm strong-arming you buddy. And my answer to this would be they are showing themselves to be as ridiculous as many members of the American public think they are. What happened to pragmatism? What happened to competition, and what actually happened to winning?
Maybe it would be great for the Democratic Party to lose the support of labor unions because quite honestly a lot of labor unions are what holds America back and keeps us from being as good as we can be.
I'd like to see these clowns try to have this conversation with someone like Leo Gerard at the table. He'd have eaten them for lunch. Heaven forbid someone who represents labor might have a seat at this table.