Comments for http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html en-gb 30 Sat 19 Apr 2014 10:55:03 GMT+1 A feed of user comments from the page found at http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html chronophobe http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=99#comment118 It's the foot in the door, people. Nate Silver's pitch to liberals: why the current Bill is actually worth trying to salvage. Thu 17 Dec 2009 02:33:25 GMT+1 GH1618 http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=98#comment117 What Dean is proposing is a parliamentary manoever which will finesse the Senate's cloture rule:http://www.cbsnews.com/blogs/2009/12/15/politics/politicalhotsheet/entry5983608.shtmlI don't think that will fly. Wed 16 Dec 2009 18:37:06 GMT+1 GH1618 http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=97#comment116 The latest on the Health Care Bill is that former Democratic Party Chairman Howard Dean, who happens to be a physician, is saying that the Senate version of the bill has been compromised to the extent that it is better to have no bill at all than that one. Wed 16 Dec 2009 18:32:30 GMT+1 chronophobe http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=96#comment115 And as for development, some interesting thoughts from George Ayittey on the folly of many development efforts in Africa.And some thoughts on the Bolivian and Ecuadorian challenges to development orthodoxy here. Tue 15 Dec 2009 03:15:16 GMT+1 GH1618 http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=95#comment114 "President Theodore Roosevelt used a local insurrection to detach Panama from Colombia, is it just to blame Obama?"I wouldn't "blame" Roosevelt, either. I would credit him. It enabled him to build the Panama Canal, perhaps the single greatest engineering work of the twentieth century, and still a boon not only to Panamanians and the United States, but the rest of the world as well. Mon 14 Dec 2009 18:11:50 GMT+1 RomeStu http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=94#comment113 105. Crataegus Monogyna wrote:"DRM, * "Fluffy – I agree leaving planet Earth in the end will be the only sensible option,"Can you calculate the energy required to accellerate, say, nine billion humans"But would they ever consider taking everone .... I doubt it. Even after the prescient warning given by Douglas Adams in the marvellous "Hitch-hikers guide to the Galaxy" books ..... the protagonist encounters the end of just such an interplanetary escape where they took workers and elite administrators and rulers ..... and ignored a whole lot of others, including the "telephone sanitisers". Later the whole population was wiped out by a disease from a dirty phone booth.OK so Adams didn't predict the mass use of mobile phones and the decline of the phone booth, but I think he still has much to say!;-)))) Mon 14 Dec 2009 17:57:16 GMT+1 fluffytale http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=94#comment112 101 bepa yep that is an old and true point. Most Israeli came from europe. then they complain about the local folk getting angry at being ejected."87. At 11:48pm on 10 Dec 2009, seanspa wrote:#85, oh magic. So it's ok to overthrow a government democratically elected if you don't like them? Unbelievable. The palestinians now have the right to overthrow the israeli government. Magic says so"then me and gherkin are in full agreement. Sat 12 Dec 2009 17:05:19 GMT+1 fluffytale http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=93#comment111 105 crata I hope he was joking. personally I have No time for space dreams. this space is fine if they took the space dreamers that are serious out of the equation. great research into global warming coming from them excelen space folk looking at earth, but the far off dreams ,,,Pah. bunch of idiots ruining our planet to see if next door is any nicer. Sat 12 Dec 2009 16:56:26 GMT+1 McJakome http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=92#comment110 107. At 4:07pm on 11 Dec 2009, SaintDominick wrote: Ref 104, Magic“As a descendent of Spaniards I thank you for your concern about the welfare of my ethnic compatriots, but as a human being I must say I am confounded by your sense of equality.”I agree with your disgust at the state of the Native American peoples, I also agree that the actions of the companies and governments of the major countries [including the US] have been bad not only for the original inhabitants but for the descendents of the conquistadors. Something should be done to redress these grievances.The problem with many solutions is that they also create injustice. Answer these propositions:My great, great grandfather caused the death of your great, great grandfather, would it be just for you to kill me?My grandfather bought land from someone whose great grandfather bought it from someone whose father stole it from a native, but would it be just to steal it from me?President Theodore Roosevelt used a local insurrection to detach Panama from Colombia, is it just to blame Obama? Is it sensible to condemn a Colombian insurrectionist group for taking help from a foreign state [the USA] while supporting a vicious, child murdering Colombian insurrectionist group receiving aid from foreign states [Venezuela, Ecuador, Cuba, etc.]? That is certainly inconsistent!It is also injustice piled upon injustice and no end in sight. It may only bring on more retribution down the line. Look at Israel, an attempt to redress historical wrongs that has been spectacularly successful in doing so, right? Would you like to see the "Israeli Solution" applied from Labrador to Tierra del Fuego?McJakome Sat 12 Dec 2009 14:33:12 GMT+1 chronophobe http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=91#comment109 ooops, 108 should read 'eliminating material want' ... Fri 11 Dec 2009 18:04:44 GMT+1 chronophobe http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=90#comment108 re: 80 via-media Thanks for that link. Thought provoking, intelligent, literate stuff. Fri 11 Dec 2009 17:59:20 GMT+1 chronophobe http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=89#comment107 An interesting juxtaposition of posts -- space travel and clean water. This is completely off topic, but since things have moved on ... Consider this: space travel (interplanetary, never mind interstellar) would require such a huge international effort that it is not possible unless we establish an international order where peace and stability is the norm. And if we accept that material want, in the sense of a lack of basic needs for many in the midst of a grotesque overabundance of stuff for the few, is a necessary (but not sufficient) criterion for such peace and stability, then functioning bore holes and sanitary toilets are one of the keys to space exploration.If we succeed in making this rock a better place to live, there is no way we would all want or need to leave it for a very, very long time. But humans seem to need a dream; an adventure that elevates us above the mundane world of bodily existence. Space travel could be that dream -- and as a dream, it seems an order of magnitude better than the old nightmares of tribalism, religion, and war. Just thinkin'. Fri 11 Dec 2009 17:56:10 GMT+1 SaintDominick http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=89#comment106 Ref 104, Magic"If Morales was serious about self determination why not give the whites the same self dertermination rights he is proposing for his own ethnic group."As a descendent of Spaniards I thank you for your concern about the welfare of my ethnic compatriots, but as a human being I must say I am confounded by your sense of equality. The socio-economic reforms that are taking place in Bolivia, Ecuador and other Latin American countries have nothing to do with the "self-determination rights" of specific ethnic groups and a lot to do with the need to improve the standard of living of those that have been denied the things that we take for granted for centuries. As incredible as it may seem, those Native Americans that are getting small plots of land to cultivate and raise a few domestic animals are also human beings that deserve the same opportunities and have the same needs as the rest of us. Don't fret, the Latin American elite continues to send their children to the best schools in the world, their Rolls and Bentleys are replaced routinely, and shopping sprees in Paris and Rome are the norm. Allowing "Indians" to eat a relatively healthy meal, have running water in their shacks, a small restroom instead of a hole in the ground, and hope for a better future for their children will not deprive those that were born with a silver spoon in their mouths from enjoying everything money can buy. Fri 11 Dec 2009 16:07:04 GMT+1 Crataegus Monogyna http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=88#comment105 Majik,You do your "cause" more harm than good. You display the arrogance, immorality and stupidity of Zionism. Keep it up. Fri 11 Dec 2009 14:57:08 GMT+1 Crataegus Monogyna http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=87#comment104 DRM, "Fluffy – I agree leaving planet Earth in the end will be the only sensible option,"Can you calculate the energy required to accellerate, say, nine billion humans plus the necessary life-support materials and apparatus?Sensible? Fri 11 Dec 2009 13:35:18 GMT+1 MagicKirin http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=86#comment103 ref #103I doubt too many Native Americans in countries like Bolivia and Ecuador see the return of their ancestral homeland as "stealing" from the descendents of the Spaniards that took it from them in the 1500s. Then again, since Pizarro and Co. used the need to convert the savages to Catholicism as one of the justifications to conquer and colonize those countries it could be argued that he had as much divine rights to the land as people in other parts of the world who consistently expand their territory based on similar concepts. ________________You see it returning lands, I see a potential Mugabe situation. Remember Morales sent his supporters to burn an oppnents house down. If Morales was serious about self determination why not give the whites the same self dertermination rights he is proposing for his own ethnic group. And I don't think you can trust a leaders who openly praises and welcomes Acmadenjiad as he and Chavez did Fri 11 Dec 2009 10:44:38 GMT+1 SaintDominick http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=85#comment102 Ref 98, Magic"So lets get this straight it is wrong for Uribe to allow a friendly country to use his nations bases. But it's fine for the other countries to steal land and property of their citzens?"President Uribe and the colombian people are free to do whatever their little hearts desire. If they wish to undermine their sovereignty that's their business.Returning the land stolen from Native Americans to the descendents of Quechuas, Arawaks, Mayans and others in countries where they constitute the overwhelming majority of the population and where that majority has been living in misery for centuries while a tiny elite enjoys all the luxuries of life may seem like a Robin Hood tactic to you, but that's what the indigenous population of those countries demand from their leaders. I realize that the implications of those acts are extremely offensive and unacceptable to people living in countries that have expanded their territorial possessions through warfare, deceit or claims of divine rights, bur what constitutes stealing in a situation like this is in the eyes of the beholder. I doubt too many Native Americans in countries like Bolivia and Ecuador see the return of their ancestral homeland as "stealing" from the descendents of the Spaniards that took it from them in the 1500s. Then again, since Pizarro and Co. used the need to convert the savages to Catholicism as one of the justifications to conquer and colonize those countries it could be argued that he had as much divine rights to the land as people in other parts of the world who consistently expand their territory based on similar concepts. Fri 11 Dec 2009 09:41:40 GMT+1 SaintDominick http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=84#comment101 Ref 101, bepa"Have people here seen the NY Times article that the Palestinians may actually be descended from the original Jews in Palestine and the modern Jew may actually be genetically european?"The fact that the Palestinians share the same semitic ethnic roots as the Middle Easters Jews has been brought up several times in this forum. The same is true for the ethnicity of the Ashkenazi (European) Jews. Biblical interpretations, and ancient misconceptions or superstitions, are no match to DNA profiling... Fri 11 Dec 2009 09:26:31 GMT+1 bepa http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=84#comment100 Have people here seen the NY Times article that the Palestinians may actually be descended from the original Jews in Palestine and the modern Jew may actually be genetically european?This is a discussion of a book.."The Invention of the Jewish People" by Shlomo Sand http://www.nytimes.com/2009/11/24/books/24jews.html?_r=1"Other theories, like the notion that many of today’s Palestinians can legitimately claim to be descended from the ancient Jews, are familiar and serious subjects of study, even if no definitive answer yet exists.""“The Invention of the Jewish People,” which spent months on the best-seller list in Israel and is now available in English. Mixing respected scholarship with dubious theories, the author, Shlomo Sand, a professor at Tel Aviv University, frames the narrative as a startling exposure of suppressed historical facts.""Consider, for instance, Professor Sand’s assertion that Palestinian Arab villagers are descended from the original Jewish farmers. Nearly a century ago, early Zionists and Arab nationalists touted the blood relationship as the basis of a potential alliance in their respective struggles for independence. Israel’s first prime minister, David Ben-Gurion, and Yitzhak Ben Zvi, Israel’s longest-serving president, made this very argument in a book they wrote together in 1918."" He (Sand) resurrects a theory first raised by 19th-century historians, that the Jews of Central and Eastern Europe, to whom 90 percent of American Jews trace their roots, are descended from the Khazars, a Turkic people who apparently converted to Judaism and created an empire in the Caucasus in the eighth century. ""Professor Sand, a scholar of modern France, not Jewish history, candidly states his aim is to undercut the Jews’ claims to the land of Israel by demonstrating that they do not constitute “a people,” with a shared racial or biological past."Does that change anything for anyone? Just wondering... Fri 11 Dec 2009 06:35:37 GMT+1 David Cunard http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=83#comment99 #88. MagicKirin: 'The Palestinians are not ruled by Israel they have a piece of land that they don't deserve and was never theres."Considering that there was an area known as Palestine long before a modern Israel, I think you're skating on very thin ice. Where do you think Christ was born? He too was Jew - and not born in Israel. Fri 11 Dec 2009 04:39:57 GMT+1 McJakome http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=82#comment98 84. At 11:19pm on 10 Dec 2009, SaintDominick wrote:Ref 81, Magic“Uribe is trying to stabilize Colombia, a country beset by violence and poverty, and because it lacks the natural resources that exist in neighboring countries he has no choice but to sell his country to the highest bidder.”Every one of the Colombians I have had occasion to ask [more than 30 less than 100, and to be honest their staying in Boston for weeks at a time puts them well above the poverty line] have a much more nuanced view.1. They hate innocents, especially children, being injured by indiscriminate FARC bombings and, of course, kidnappings. 2. They applaud President Uribe’s efforts to destroy FARC.3. They think that the US use of their bases is a Colombian internal matter and are hostile to other countries telling Colombia what to do or not to do. [My comment: Funny that people attack the US for having made a habit of this, but no one seems to be criticizing Chaves, Corea, Lula and others for it!]4. They are very angry at Chavez and other leftist leaders funding, protecting and arming FARC.6. They are not happy with the possibility of an extension of Uribe’s term of office as in Latin America that portends a likelihood of loss of democracy and increased opportunity for corruption. [Me again: I think this might explain Colombia recognizing the new democratically elected government of Honduras.]7. They say that while they approve of his extermination of FARC and wouldn’t cry if someone exterminated Hugo Chavez, they think his administration is getting more corrupt and that there should be a change.But not some left-wing dictatorship. BTW most of them think the right wing death squads are a bad idea. They do the same things as the left wing death squads [FARC] do, kill innocents [though not as many as FARC], contribute to drug traffricing and criminality and make Colombia less than it could be. Fri 11 Dec 2009 01:51:36 GMT+1 MagicKirin http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=81#comment97 ref 92 and 93So lets get this straight it is wrong for Uribe to allow a friendly country to use his nations bases. But it's fine for the other countries to steal land and property of their citzens? Fri 11 Dec 2009 01:48:39 GMT+1 MagicKirin http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=80#comment96 ref #96squirrelist wrote:88. MagicKirin:Well, at least in Britain we will now have a clearer idea of exactly where our celery or whatever reallycomes from. Like an illegal Israeli settlement or a truly Palestinian orchard or market garden.In what way do you yourself 'deserve' to live on whatever land you now occupy? By right of conquest? Through personally evicting whoever was there before you? Simple theft perhaps?________________It was never the Palestinians because the land belonged to Jordan they lost a war of agression .The Palestinan claims to the land like the Nbaka are a joke, but the EU is ignorant of the fact. They should not lecture Israel on their land while blocking some countries like Turkey from joining the EU. Fri 11 Dec 2009 01:46:47 GMT+1 squirrelist http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=79#comment95 88. MagicKirin:Well, at least in Britain we will now have a clearer idea of exactly where our celery or whatever reallycomes from. Like an illegal Israeli settlement or a truly Palestinian orchard or market garden.In what way do you yourself 'deserve' to live on whatever land you now occupy? By right of conquest? Through personally evicting whoever was there before you? Simple theft perhaps?What will your response be to any Native Americans turning up on your doorstep suggesting you might just depart, bag and baggage, along with all your relatives, for the Ukraine, Khazakstan, Guatemala, Guinea-Bissau. Papua New Guinea or wherever there are people like you (which is always implicit)? Why not Venezuela, Burma or Cuba? What about Madagascar, perhaps? You might not actually likeit there, but, well, tough, we want your space, we 'deserve' it more than you.I trust you will acquiesce politely and not make any fuss. Send us a postcard. Fri 11 Dec 2009 01:37:46 GMT+1 HERCULE_SAVINIEN http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=78#comment94 WE HAVE LOST CONTROL OF OUR GOVERNMENT[Edward Kennedy]Quote: Your wrath may be directed at the wrong people I think the fundamental problem is that we have lost control over our government and our news media, end of quote. [Source: Edward Kennedy][The totalitarian police state]The Global Community of Peace Loving Nations, are saying that is an understatement to say that the American-Israeli Empire way of voting needs considerable improvement that it should now be obvious to everyone, within the global community of nations, that the Empire, once a beacon of hope, is an entity lacking foresight, compassion, and is indeed, openly and brazenly a subsidiary of a fairly short list of special interests and special relationships, the Political Theatre and the Mass Media are it's propaganda tools that anesthetize and create the illusion of freedom. The Empire has been so corrupted by money and a powerful oligarchy that it is no longer a Democracy, but a totalitarian police state and the people are told what to think and do else they are not good citizens. Which in the end will be made up of only a [2] two class society, one the upper [10%] Ten-percent wealthy with the other [90%] ninety percent poor, minus a strong middle class, a third world nation as predicted by [2020], the fall of the Empire.[The branches the twigs]It has become impossible to even separate which of the branches and twigs belong to either the Democratic or Republican Party, braches of government, as, all members of the government and their staffs are too focused on who has what influence, and how they amass more political power, via the Lobbyist river of money providing the life blood of funding and how they fund their next election campaign, and in exchange for votes as dictated by the [MIC] Military Industrial Complex, Think Tanks Endowed chairs for scholars, [Biddle, Cordesman, Kristol, Kaplan, and Exum] dance for the pay and tune of the piper, the big defense contractors such as Lockheed Martin, Raytheon, Boeing, only and first answer to every policy question is [INVADE SEND THE MARINES THE SEVENTH FLEET], which all mean profits for the defense contractors. Stopping any other necessary needs of the people business, which must be done, beyond standing up and voice the rhetoric about free enterprise as they pass laws that restrict competition, in favour of their Lobbyist backed campaign funding [MIC] Contractors. But sooner or later the wolves will be hungrily roaming the forest and if they step into the forest of reality on their way to their version of the New World Order both are going to get more than fleeced.[A moral Issue]The Empire is faced with above all is a moral issue of the Tyranny of the Bottom Line, at stake are not just the details of policy, but fundamental principles of social justice and the character of our Empire. The system is corrupt beyond repair and will not change until the Empire is brought down, and the [MIC] dismantled with the people of the new Republics of the North American Continent developing new representative forms of government, in place of the present failed one. It is time for the [350M] Three-Hundred –Fifty Million continent-sized Empire to become a continent of separate Republics, the present system ill suits the needs of the entire nation. The Concept of PEACE THRU WAR, this was the battle cry of [WWI] World War One, The war to end all war, and was correct as you walk across a battlefield after the battle has ended it’s one of defying silence, all is at peace not a sound to be heard, just the smell of Napalm if you consider that Victory, just another [18] months, followed by an endless occupation, of an annexed Islamic Crescent by the Empire, or the war too end all human life on the planet [WWIII] World War Three, the only sound will be the howling of the wind across an ice and snow covered barren globe shrouded in a Nuclear Winter.HERCULE TRIATHLON SAVINIEN Fri 11 Dec 2009 01:22:38 GMT+1 McJakome http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=78#comment93 Obama is returning to America's liberal roots. Trying to find a compromise acceptable to as many citizens as possible is a tradition that brought us both good and bad.The good: a senate and a government with abundant checks, balances and protections of civil rights. The bad: a viper in the very bosom of the republic, toleration of one of the greatest evils conceived by the mind of man, slavery, that reared its ugly head not 2 generations after the foundation of the country in the most bloody and unnecessary war in American history, the Civil War.The propensity to compromise intelligently contrasts with the previous administrations actions. This president's willingness to hold out the hand of friendship to any who unclench their fists is good for the internal politics of the US and for the whole world. Fri 11 Dec 2009 01:11:16 GMT+1 SaintDominick http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=77#comment92 Ref 85, Magic"As far as Zeylia he was trying to rewrite the counstitution with ballots provided bu Hugo, he was in it for himself."President Zelaya did not try to re-write the Constitution of Honduras. He proposed an ammendment to the Constitution to allow presidential second terms using a plebiscite to determine whether or not the majority of the people favored the idea. The use of a plebiscite for matters such as that are covered in Article 6 of the Honduran Constitution. "With all honesty I admidt that I hope all 3 Chavez, Morales and Corea are deposed for the good of the hemisphere."Fortunately for them, their re-election and tenure is not up to American neocons or fundamentalists, but up to the people of their respective countries. As long as they enjoy the level of support they currently we will have no choice but to listen to "sulfuric" speeches...unless, of course, the situation in the Persian Gulf region stabilizes and we need a new front... Fri 11 Dec 2009 00:58:28 GMT+1 SaintDominick http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=76#comment91 Ref 86, Andy PostI should have been more accurate when I wrote my original statement. President Alvaro Uribe granted US military and civilian personnel access to seven Colombian military bases for the purpose of training colombian troops and police, and assisting in the figft against narco-traffickers and leftist guerrillas (FARC). Approximately 800 American troops and 600 civilian contractor will be granted access to these bases and will enjoy diplomatic immunity during their stay in that South American country. Fri 11 Dec 2009 00:52:06 GMT+1 SaintDominick http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=75#comment90 Ref 88, Magic"Two of the three Venezuela and Ecador are illegitimate. So you want thugs like the Palestinian leaders to have more power?"The Presidents of Venezuela, Ecuador and Bolivia were elected and re-elected by a solid majority of the citizens in their respective countries. Their elections were monitored by international bodies that did not see any evidence of fraud or intimidation, moreover, they continue to enjoy the support of their people.How exactly does that make them illegitimate? Compared to the 2000 election in the USA, theirs look like an example worthy to become a model. The fact that we don't like someone, or that there is opposition to them does not mean their elections were tainted. There is opposition to President Obama in the USA, as evidenced on this blog, does that make him illegitimate?One thing is to criticize the policies or actions of a specific leader, another to distort their record or demonize them because their policies are inconsistent with our global interests or offensive to us for other reasons. Fri 11 Dec 2009 00:42:21 GMT+1 Andy Post http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=74#comment89 Ref. 88, MagicKirin:"The Palestinians are not ruled by Israel they have a piece of land that they don't deserve and was never theirs."Really? Your argument is what exactly? How do a people go about deserving the land on which they have lived for centuries? That's another interesting concept. Please fill me in. Fri 11 Dec 2009 00:16:26 GMT+1 Andy Post http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=73#comment88 Ref. 8,. MagicKirin:"With all honesty I admit that I hope all 3 Chavez, Morales and Corea are deposed for the good of the hemisphere."I don't care either way. I'd prefer their fate be determined by election. Right the people in their countries seem to want socialism. As long as they get what they want, what does it matter to the U.S., really? Fri 11 Dec 2009 00:10:31 GMT+1 MagicKirin http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=73#comment87 seanspa wrote:#85, oh magic. So it's ok to overthrow a government democratically elected if you don't like them? Unbelievable. The palestinians now have the right to overthrow the israeli government. Magic says so.___________Two of the three Venezuela and Ecador are illegitimate. So you want thugs like the Palestinian leaders to have more power?The Palestinians are not ruled by Israel they have a piece of land that they don't deserve and was never theres.Let them rot or move to Jordan.Arab reperations to Israel now! Fri 11 Dec 2009 00:00:27 GMT+1 seanspa http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=72#comment86 #85, oh magic. So it's ok to overthrow a government democratically elected if you don't like them? Unbelievable. The palestinians now have the right to overthrow the israeli government. Magic says so. Thu 10 Dec 2009 23:48:17 GMT+1 Andy Post http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=71#comment85 ref. 84, SaintDominick:"His decision to allow US military bases in Colombia and the level of interferrence he allows is nothing short of embarrassing."U.S. military bases in Colombia? You have a reference? Thu 10 Dec 2009 23:41:06 GMT+1 MagicKirin http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=70#comment84 ref #81"I'll take Uribe and the new President of Hondures along with the leaders of Costa Rica and Chile as more reprsetative of the modern Latin america than these three thugs."A thug to you is a hero to someone else. I admire Bachelet and Zelaya for their pragmatism, professionalism and the way they have been deploying their socio-economic reform agenda, but the circumstances, particularly the level of education, is very different in the countries in question. Illiteracy is still widespread in Bolivia and Ecuador, and it used to be 52% in the 1950s (it has improved dramatically in recent decades). Conversely, and in spite of the right wing murderous dictators that ruled Chile with an iron hand, the level of education in that country has been higher than average for Latin America. The same is true in Argentina and Uruguay.Uribe is trying to stabilize Colombia, a country beset by violence and poverty, and because it lacks the natural resources that exist in neighboring countries he has no choice but to sell his country to the highest bidder. His decision to allow US military bases in Colombia and the level of interferrence he allows is nothing short of embarrassing. _________________-Do you think Uribe who has proof that his neighbors on either side are supporting FARC might want to allie with a democracy friendly to him rather than 2 authortarian dictatorships.As far as Zeylia he was trying to rewrite the counstitution with ballots provided bu Hugo, he was in it for himself.Obama made one of his few good foriegn policy decisions recognizing the new President.With all honesty I admidt that I hope all 3 Chavez, Morales and Corea are deposed for the good of the hemisphere. Thu 10 Dec 2009 23:29:05 GMT+1 SaintDominick http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=69#comment83 Ref 81, Magic"I'll take Uribe and the new President of Hondures along with the leaders of Costa Rica and Chile as more reprsetative of the modern Latin america than these three thugs."A thug to you is a hero to someone else. I admire Bachelet and Zelaya for their pragmatism, professionalism and the way they have been deploying their socio-economic reform agenda, but the circumstances, particularly the level of education, is very different in the countries in question. Illiteracy is still widespread in Bolivia and Ecuador, and it used to be 52% in the 1950s (it has improved dramatically in recent decades). Conversely, and in spite of the right wing murderous dictators that ruled Chile with an iron hand, the level of education in that country has been higher than average for Latin America. The same is true in Argentina and Uruguay.Uribe is trying to stabilize Colombia, a country beset by violence and poverty, and because it lacks the natural resources that exist in neighboring countries he has no choice but to sell his country to the highest bidder. His decision to allow US military bases in Colombia and the level of interferrence he allows is nothing short of embarrassing. Thu 10 Dec 2009 23:19:38 GMT+1 bepa http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=68#comment82 #79 Via-MediaWell at least thats proof we have free speech. Thu 10 Dec 2009 21:59:38 GMT+1 colonelartist http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=68#comment81 Has obama given you the objectives of his war? A few days ago everyone was talking about the objectives, and now that forgotten, you will just echo Obama..From this day onwards, obama and his supporters cannot say that he inherited this war, today he defended the war..so it becomes his..And his announcment was clebrated by another drone attack on pakistan today.. Thu 10 Dec 2009 21:50:35 GMT+1 MagicKirin http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=67#comment80 ref #73I'll take Uribe and the new President of Hondures along with the leaders of Costa Rica and Chile as more reprsetative of the modern Latin america than these three thugs. Thu 10 Dec 2009 21:49:47 GMT+1 Via-Media http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=66#comment79 For those with a bit of time, a fascinating take on modern American politics and society by a future-thinker:davidbrin.blogspot.com/ (and yes, that is the science fiction author, who describes himself as holding a mix of liberal and libertarian views.)The most recent posting contains an interesting discussion of the Right and Left faceoff, the "culture wars", and the death of the true conservative movement. I don't agree with all of his predictions, but it's very thought-provoking nonetheless... And it does have a lot of relevance to the Health Care debate. Thu 10 Dec 2009 21:48:18 GMT+1 Via-Media http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=65#comment78 71 bepaApproximately one month after the election- and, if memory serves, before the inauguration- I spotted a new bumper sticker at work: "Impeach Obama." For some of the far fringe, there is no rational thought, merely a visceral, even feral, antipathy.Oh, and the irony, this was in the parking lot of a Federal facility... Thu 10 Dec 2009 21:31:21 GMT+1 bepa http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=64#comment77 #72 MagicKirinYou are so spoiled..here it is..with a few quotes...http://publicpolicypolling.blogspot.com/2009/12/obamas-december-standing.html"For the second month in a row we find Barack Obama's national approval rating at 49%, with 47% of voters disapproving of him. He has the support of 83% of Democrats, 46% of independents, and 11% of Republicans. None of those numbers have really changed from our November poll.""Perhaps the greatest measure of Obama's declining support is that just 50% of voters now say they prefer having him as President to George W. Bush, with 44% saying they'd rather have his predecessor""Finally 20% of voters, including 35% of Republicans, support impeaching Obama for his actions so far. I'm not clear exactly what 'high crimes and misdemeanors' they are using to justify that position but there may be a certain segment of voters on both the right and the left these days that simply think the President doing things they don't agree with is grounds for removal from office."if you go to the link there is a pdf file that gives the full poll results...it says "Full results here" and then you click on the "here"... Thu 10 Dec 2009 21:30:41 GMT+1 chronophobe http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=63#comment76 Hail Caesar! I like the discourse, but, you know, Suetonius says some rather nasty things about old Lucan.And on a completely different subject, some interesting health care polling numbers from Nate Silver here. Thu 10 Dec 2009 21:29:18 GMT+1 BienvenueEnLouisiana http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=63#comment75 HERCULE TRIATHLON SAVINIEN, whose propaganda ministry do you work for?Russia, China, Iran, Venezuela, Cuba, or other? Thu 10 Dec 2009 21:27:08 GMT+1 bepa http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=62#comment74 Merry Christmas (early)http://video.telegraph.co.uk/services/player/bcpid1529569286?bctid=5524339001and there are red squirrels in the video with the requisite tufted ears Thu 10 Dec 2009 21:21:28 GMT+1 squirrelist http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=61#comment73 An alternative speech for Oslo today:"What made our forefathers embark on such ann orgy of self destruction? And why were their hated enemies permitted to enjoy the spectacle? . . .It is bitter indeed to reflect how much of the earth's surface -- from the lands of sunrise to those of sunset-- could have been bought with the lives so fruitlessly squandered.Granted that we have an insatiable craving for war, why could we not have waited at least until all foreign nations had become subject to our laws before entering upon this criminal career?. . ,the end may here be offered as sufficient justification of the means--including ll the crimes committed. . .As great edifices collapse of their own weight, so Heaven sets a similar limit to the growth of prosperous states. In this case, the partners, all disastrously pledged to the same purpose but each blinded by his own ambitions, joined hands in common mischief. . . But the people too had a secret propensity for war, characteristic of every sovereign race; masters of the world, endowed by Fortune with such an excess of wealth that it had corrupted their public morality. Spoils won in war tempted them to extravagance; they all felt entitled to possess as much money and as many houses as they pleased. . .because poverty now seemed odious, they rifled every foreign land of whatever produce had most contributed to its downfall.Frequent breaches of the peace resulted, as did also vile crimes prompted by the unequal distribution of wealth. To be above the laws of one's own country became a distinction worth winning; and might was right."(Written in advance, actually about 1,940 years ago, by one Marcus Annaeus Lucanus of Cordoba.) Thu 10 Dec 2009 20:52:53 GMT+1 SaintDominick http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=60#comment72 Ref 30, Magic"Apologizing to Latin American countries for dictating"When did President Obama apologize to Latin America for past wrongs?If he did, I applaud his decision, which is long overdue. I lived in Latin America in the 1940s and 50s, at a time when United Fruit, oil companies, and other U.S. corporations exploited the host nations with impunity and imposed their will with total disregard for the rights and aspirations of the local population.Because of my nationality and the fact that my Dad had a good job I lived on the right side of the chainlink fence and enjoyed everything money could buy in those days, but I will never forget the poverty that was evident on the other side where people lived in conditions so deplorable that they can only be described as inhumane and unfit for human beings.Things have improved in recent decades, in part because of increased awareness in the USA and the world at large, and because of the rise of local leaders that are, predictably, labeled as dictators and despots by those who long for a return of the good old days. Forget it, it will never happen again.Our misguided policies and excesses contributed to the rise of socialism and anti-American feelings that are now evident throughout Central and South America, Mexico, and the Caribbean, and if we think stationing mercenaries and paying death squads in Colombia will reverse the trend we better think again.Chavez' megalomaniac goals and immature rhetoric is unbecoming of a national leader, and Morales' and Correa's approach to problem solving may be aggressive, but considering the injustices that characterized life in that part of the world since the days of the conquest I understand the urgency of their actions. Reversing the abuse and exploitation that has taken place for centuries, mostly by an arrogant and unscrupulous elite, requires drastic measures to achieve.We are not responsible for all the ills that afflict Latin America, but we have definitely contributed to them. Thu 10 Dec 2009 20:52:31 GMT+1 MagicKirin http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=59#comment71 ref #71 bepa wrote:This is the craziness we have to deal with in America:http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2009/12/10/poll-35-of-republicans-wa_n_387093.html"Thirty-five percent of Republicans said that they would support impeaching Obama for his actions so far, though there is no indication of what specific "actions" they think could potentially merit impeachment. Twenty percent of all respondents were in favor of impeachment.""I'm not clear exactly what 'high crimes and misdemeanors' they are using to justify that position but there may be a certain segment of voters on both the right and the left these days that simply think the President doing things they don't agree with is grounds for removal from office," said pollster Tom Jensen. "They have absolutely no grounds for impeachment....These people are nuts and there are a lot of them."In addition, 44% of voters said they'd rather have George W. Bush back in the White House. "__________________On your first point, I'd like a more relliable source than the Huffington Post, although I am sure there were a good percentage of Dems who felt that way about Bush.In regard to the 44% as an independent I would rather have Bush over Barack the clueless. Thu 10 Dec 2009 20:42:41 GMT+1 bepa http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=58#comment70 This is the craziness we have to deal with in America:http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2009/12/10/poll-35-of-republicans-wa_n_387093.html"Thirty-five percent of Republicans said that they would support impeaching Obama for his actions so far, though there is no indication of what specific "actions" they think could potentially merit impeachment. Twenty percent of all respondents were in favor of impeachment.""I'm not clear exactly what 'high crimes and misdemeanors' they are using to justify that position but there may be a certain segment of voters on both the right and the left these days that simply think the President doing things they don't agree with is grounds for removal from office," said pollster Tom Jensen. "They have absolutely no grounds for impeachment....These people are nuts and there are a lot of them."In addition, 44% of voters said they'd rather have George W. Bush back in the White House. "Oh God! Does anyone still wonder why Obama is cautious. Thu 10 Dec 2009 20:31:14 GMT+1 SaintDominick http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=57#comment69 Ref 64, Magic"In regard to your post removal, I emphasize because moderators over do it."The moderators did not specify why my post was removed, but I suspect the reason involved hyperbole when I compared our vacation resort in Guantanamo to some well known and very nefarious prisons. Clearly, that was unnecessary and inappropiate and, as a result, I deserved having my post removed. Thu 10 Dec 2009 20:27:31 GMT+1 bepa http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=57#comment68 yes Saint Dominick is right#63"Even a hint of defeat or not having accomplished our stated goals - whatever they may be - would be fatal for any American President and Obama is well aware of that."President Obama has accurately portrayed the American point of view about war with his acceptance speech.Now we should accurately look at whether this expansion in Afghanistan is successful or not. Obama has given a chance to the hawks..now lets see if they can produce.If it not successful then we should change strategies.Imo this use of war will not produce the changes we would like to see..and it will fail...but the hawks have yet to be convinced of that...So yet again we will have the Charge of the Light Brigade...How many more times do we have to sacrifice people in wars that are not successful? How many more times will the Hawks give excuses for their failures? ( If only we had more troops..we needed better supplies..we needed more time..the people didn't support us...we shouldn't tell them when we are leaving..we should have told them we would leave...etc...)All that a military can do is offer some order ..a military solution can not change a culture.Too many of the decisions are being made by military minds that can not see any other solutions but by using war and the military.But the military is an important part of the US role in the world and they are asked to do things a that are very stressful and I thank them for their service...and sometimes they give up their lives for us...Its the strategy that is wrong... Thu 10 Dec 2009 20:04:52 GMT+1 HERCULE_SAVINIEN http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=56#comment67 YANKEE ABUSE OF LATIN AMERICA30. MagicKirin wrote: At 12:12pm on 10 Dec 2009.Apologizing to Latin American countries for dictating(he should be calling out rouge nations like Cuba and Venezuela and demanding apology from Morales for expelling our ambassador without cause)***********************************************************************TRIATHLON REPLYS:VENEZUELA: On this point we are force to agree with the Media Messiah Imperial President of the American-Israeli Empire, Latin America deserves far more than just an apology, they could do with a lot of pay back, in Venezuela we viewed for ourselves TOU-AMORO prisoners brought to their place of execution by (CIA) Central Intelligence Agency operative and Venezuela Troops taken out in boat with handcuffs with only the handcuffs coming back, the way they looked death would have been nothing, more than a blessing.CUBA: The Bay of Pigs is just another of those moments in history were the Empire got caught, the Cuban Missile Crisis, and over [50] Fifty-years of illegal embargo upon the people of Cuba, and declared as illegal by the [UN] United Nations.Argentina: The Yankee American-Israeli Empire, [CIA], and Ring Thumping West Point Graduates, were involved in the set up and personal use of the {Rape] camps were thousands of women have never been found.MORALES: Morales for expelling our ambassador without cause. Morales does not have to give any cause for expelling the Empires Ambassador, or for that matter breaking direct relations with the Empire by totally closing the Embassy, and recalling his people from the Empire.These countries are all preparing for the next American-Israeli Empire War of Economic Stimulus, Blood for Oil, Markets and Resources, as the Empire builds military bases in Bolivia, both Cuba and Venezuela are not going to lay down and just be rolled over.From trading weapons for drugs to sell in the Ghettos of the Empire, Setting up Rape Camps, Empire backed Invasions, Illegal Embargos, and Murder, Latin America is not only due an apology they are due a little retribution.HERCULE TRIATHLON SAVINIEN Thu 10 Dec 2009 20:02:44 GMT+1 colonelartist http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=55#comment66 President Obama finds himself in the unenviable role of having to clean up someone else's wars (and war crimes). He is not profiting from any of this -- as even the many hostile statements targeting him indicate. ------------------------------------------------------------------------He didnt find himself in that situation, he chose to inherit bush's war..and he chose to expand it. Thu 10 Dec 2009 20:01:38 GMT+1 colonelartist http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=54#comment65 I opposed the invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq from the outset, but under the present circumstances it may take a surge and a claim of victory to sell withdrawal to the American people. Even a hint of defeat or not having accomplished our stated goals - whatever they may be - would be fatal for any American President and Obama is well aware of that.-------------------------------------------------------------------------But this and but that, A person openly talked about war as he received the peace prize...thats the first time in the history of that prize..Now everyone will pathetically echo obama's justifications for war...Such excuses for war have been said for the past 8 yrs...Next time you defend this man of peace and his followers, just remember, the west's attack on the religon of peace...Even fox news which regularly targets religon of peace has defended the man of peace intentions of war.. Thu 10 Dec 2009 19:53:18 GMT+1 Maria Ashot http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=53#comment64 No. 63, the difference between Obama's speech and Bush's hypocritical pronouncements is that Bush-Cheney and their acolytes cooked up the war specifically to make themselves and their golfing/hunting buddies wealthier... Much wealthier than they already were, if you recall W's cynical quip defining his constituency as the "Haves and the Have-Mores"... Delivered with a smirk and actually quite apt.President Obama finds himself in the unenviable role of having to clean up someone else's wars (and war crimes). He is not profiting from any of this -- as even the many hostile statements targeting him indicate. And I write this, as many of you know, as a person who opposed his candidacy vehemently and did not wish to see him win. So that tells you something about his capacity to overcome arguments raised against him, and demonstrate an ability to impress even someone who was a very determined adversary, by having exercised his influence and authority wisely since arriving in the White House. Thu 10 Dec 2009 19:47:02 GMT+1 MagicKirin http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=52#comment63 ref #31In regard to your post removal, I emphasize because moderators over do it.I am equally oppurtunity on political corruption, I want them all to do the perp walk.Oh fluff brain soros illegally funnels money into political campaigns violating finance laws, he doesn't pay his share of taxes, and was no better than the Wall street people in disrupting the economy. Thu 10 Dec 2009 19:29:49 GMT+1 SaintDominick http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=52#comment62 Ref 60, colonelartist"He is a man who talked about waging war while receiving the nobel peace prize...You can praise the kong of the rhetoric but he is the master of wars.."I opposed the invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq from the outset, but under the present circumstances it may take a surge and a claim of victory to sell withdrawal to the American people. Even a hint of defeat or not having accomplished our stated goals - whatever they may be - would be fatal for any American President and Obama is well aware of that. Thu 10 Dec 2009 19:21:32 GMT+1 colonelartist http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=51#comment61 The main aim of nobel prize is peace, not defend war in the name of peace..Those who will praise his speech will have to defend war, and as bush had already done before.."sometimes war is a must for peace"..Now we will see people saying the same again, because obama said so...Mccain never once said about expanding the war to Pakistan...Obama said during his campaign... Thu 10 Dec 2009 19:01:54 GMT+1 frayedcat http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=50#comment60 Colonel I think we are better with him in office than McCain in this matter/time on war topics. Kucinich again maybe peferable on war issues, but he didn't win the primary. Thu 10 Dec 2009 18:46:43 GMT+1 colonelartist http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=49#comment59 He is a man who talked about waging war while receiving the nobel peace prize...You can praise the kong of the rhetoric but he is the master of wars.. Thu 10 Dec 2009 18:14:35 GMT+1 GH1618 http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=48#comment58 I just read Obama's Nobel speech, and I agree with the characterization of it in the last paragraph of post #58. Thu 10 Dec 2009 18:06:51 GMT+1 frayedcat http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=47#comment57 I think these bills are always a mish mash, each lobbying group getting this or that changed or added. HR 3962 has become a joke through the efforts of Congress (industry lobbies) and thanks to our vocal zombie teabag loonies. Kacunich has a great handle on it even if he does believe in UFO's. http://kucinich.house.gov/News/DocumentSingle.aspx?DocumentID=153995 A single payer system would be best to control costs, despite that it resembles goverment intervention into a private industry profit spread - just like when Roosevelt made the utilities go public.As to Obama, he certainly knows making law is the domain of Congress. Fox news published something nice about his nobel speech today:"He is a man of thoughtful vision who understands the complexities of human nature as well as war, peace and good and evil. The speech will go down as one of the greatest made on these difficult issues and it will endure past his term in office." ratner op ed fox news Thu 10 Dec 2009 17:53:46 GMT+1 fluffytale http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=47#comment56 55 lol philly That's OK I couldn't afford the ticket anyway.;) I just wanted to live in a truly red state. . Thu 10 Dec 2009 17:51:54 GMT+1 fluffytale http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=46#comment55 53 philly mom. it seems to be that way. we can but wait and see how it works and if that synopsis is right. Thu 10 Dec 2009 17:16:38 GMT+1 Philly-Mom http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=45#comment54 BTW: there was a version circulating that would eliminate tax exemptions for employer contributions for about 5-10% of domestic employers. My impression was that this would affect Medical, Dental, Vision, and even Retirement Contributions. Ouch. These companies would probably stop providing employer contributions, forcing their employees to accept whatever 'option' the government is (or is not) going to provide. Hmmmm.... -- anyone know if that hiccup is still on the proposition?Also: 36. DRMurrell / 43. Fluffy :Ya'll forget -- The world is flat and the space administration is fake. Mars is not an option, because it is merely a small hole in the firmament. So sry. At least the end is near... Thu 10 Dec 2009 17:09:33 GMT+1 U13817236 http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=44#comment53 "President Obama has welcomed a compromise on health care that is widely being interpreted as scrapping the public option, which has been a touchstone for many liberals"...which is exactly what was intended all along. Corporate Uncle Tom Obama bought the Oval Office with a billion bucks, most of it from big business interests who control the Democratic wing of Amerika's one-party state, as much as they do the Republican wing. It is these corporate interests that are Obama's "core supporters" as much as they were for Bush - and it will go down very well with them, thank you. The insurance corporations will make out like bandits, just as was planned, all along. And Obama's re-election coffers will be re-filled even more generously in return. That's the way the system works in Amerika, so none of this should come as any surprise. Corporate interests have won the rigged lottery as usual; the great huckster Obama will get his 'vigorish'. And Robert Gibbs will go on dissembling, just as he's paid to do. Nothing has changed, there is no new hope, and there never was. Thu 10 Dec 2009 17:08:39 GMT+1 Philly-Mom http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=43#comment52 This matter is pertinent to my interests... because I and many loved ones have gone without medical coverage for long periods of time. My mother-in-law is still paying hospital bills that her "Coverage" as a Waitress didn't "Cover" when she broke an ankle and was out of work for a long while.Anyway -- Isn't this the proposition from Hillary's platform?The development of a brand new 'public option' ex nihilo seemed a bit grand. A friend in gov liked the idea, but was against it - because our Government Bureaucracy tends to screw up the administration of what operation it touches.But, our public servants on Capital Hill already have a medical insurance plan that is provided for by the US Gov & taxpayer dollars. The current 'non-public' idea seems to be that the options made available to our Senators would be made available to the public. This option is practical because it's a nation-wide system that's already in place and working just fine. Also, it is still Gov Funded and coordinated coverage which acts very much like a 'public option' but isn't called that. It's an easier pill to swallow.I think that sums it up. But, if I'm wrong - could someone throw a life-line over here? Thu 10 Dec 2009 17:04:35 GMT+1 fluffytale http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=42#comment51 "Exactly right. Why can't the US provide health care for its people? How stupid are Americans not to realize we are getting scr*w*d?( But Cuba invests heavily in its medical doctors and uses them for propaganda purposes in other nations...so I would not use Cuba as an example)"lol bepa but hey whatever works. they need that good will generated after all america is still tying it's hardest t6o prove their point by fixing the game on the communism working n cuba. Thu 10 Dec 2009 17:03:43 GMT+1 bepa http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=42#comment50 #47 D R Murrell"From an outsiders point of view it does worry me that a rich powerful democracy seems incapable of doing something all the other rich powerful democracies can and even the apparently failing Communist countries can manage. Cuba that has suffered sanctions for decades, under an apparent corrupt uncaring tyrant (if certain sections of the US population are to be believed) yet they can manage to run a universal health care system, yet the sole world power would apparently disintegrate it tried to."Exactly right. Why can't the US provide health care for its people? How stupid are Americans not to realize we are getting scr*w*d?( But Cuba invests heavily in its medical doctors and uses them for propaganda purposes in other nations...so I would not use Cuba as an example)-- “What we face is above all a moral issue; at stake are not just the details of policy, but fundamental principles of social justice and the character of our country.”Edward Kennedy Thu 10 Dec 2009 16:51:21 GMT+1 bepa http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=41#comment49 #25 BienvenueEnLouisianaIt is so outrageous that Americans are unable to get health care and that some Americans are defending that... and some of the tea baggers have even harassed people who have suffered without health care...It makes America look so bad as a nation. They are an embarrassment...#27 MagicKirin The left is very visible..but did you ever hear of the Koch brothers? These wealthy people are hidden from us but very active politically. #29 SaintDominick" definitely don't understand why President Obama "Because the right wing has some very powerful and wealthy people who will sabotage anything this president tries to do. You can see how they are even as President Obama does things they would normally approve of...#31 SaintDominickYes..there have been a whole slew of sexual scandals concerning Republicans... They may not know about them in the UKSanford has escaped being removed as Governor but he is being censured...and what he did was criminal imo because he misused state funds to carry on an affair.http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mark_Sanford"On June 24, 2009, Sanford resigned as chairman of the Republican Governors Association, after he publicly revealed that he had had an affair with an Argentine woman, María Belén Chapur.[1] Sanford has since been criticized for his external affairs and use of taxpayer-funded planes to fly to Argentina, while previously insisting that he went hiking on the Appalachian Trail during his five-day absence."# 33 KingLeeRoySandersJryes I agree that it is very clear the government is being run for the benefit of the large corporations. and we can't do a d*m thing about it...but look at who is making money..and its these wealthy people who are behind the scenes... Your wrath may be directed at the wrong people#35 arclighttSoros is a response to the right wing that has been so wealthy and so active in a hidden way in US politics. I think the fundamental problem is that we have lost control over our government and our news media. There should be a set of facts that everyone agrees to ..but instead we are arguing over whether Obama was born in Kenya or Hawaii. People are being distracted by nonsense.Thats a shame about the Voice of America... Thu 10 Dec 2009 16:41:17 GMT+1 Maria Ashot http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=40#comment48 fluffy: Fully agree about the "cruel & unusual" -- not to mention the environmental damage from the costly print ads, the power generation (i.e. Wattage) wasted on the relentless TV ads, the mind-blowing numbness of the whole stultifying ordeal...Really & truly: greatly enjoyed spending most of the past US Presidential election season (all 2+ years of it) in the UK. And that was a huge reason for being able to enjoy it in spite of the financial catastrophe underway... The American way of voting needs considerable improvement. (Understatement.) Thu 10 Dec 2009 16:12:49 GMT+1 Maria Ashot http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=39#comment47 squirrellist, No. 37: Did say it would last long? Thu 10 Dec 2009 16:07:26 GMT+1 D R Murrell http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=38#comment46 Fluffy – I agree leaving planet Earth in the end will be the only sensible option, unless those life extension techniques they keep promising do turn up and work really well I don’t see it happening significantly in our lifetimes though. Probably all for the best just imagine all the new ColonelA’s coming on these boards complaining about the US’s imperial conquest of Mars!Back to the actual topic even though this is a compromise at least it is a step in the right direction and hopefully not the last. From an outsiders point of view it does worry me that a rich powerful democracy seems incapable of doing something all the other rich powerful democracies can and even the apparently failing Communist countries can manage. Cuba that has suffered sanctions for decades, under an apparent corrupt uncaring tyrant (if certain sections of the US population are to be believed) yet they can manage to run a universal health care system, yet the sole world power would apparently disintegrate it tried to. There was I foolishly thinking that the US was meant to be the pinnacle that everyone else should aspire to, well that’s what Nero keeps telling me and surely a world class engineer should know! Thu 10 Dec 2009 16:06:07 GMT+1 colonelartist http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=37#comment45 Regardless of how the minority may feel about this distinction, I find this recognition a reason for all of us to rejoice in the knowledge that, for once, we have a President that elicits respect from the world community, instead of those that use force, intimidation and deceit to govern. -------------------------------------------------------------------------Half of his speech was adressed to the americans, the rest had no substance just the rhetoric of the highest order..We have already heard the concpet of "war for peace" from george bush..Obama just recycled it.. Thu 10 Dec 2009 16:01:55 GMT+1 fluffytale http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=36#comment44 Gherkin your constant attention to George Soros is very strange. Why do you keep bringing him up. Your obsession with him seems borderline obsessive Thu 10 Dec 2009 15:52:16 GMT+1 fluffytale http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=36#comment43 13via."I can see it quite possible that the insurance companies, given enough rope, ...."as I say he gives rope."Obama the rope giver"All around he has been laying down rope. and some they seem to think they have steel necks.He can't Dictate. then it is his failure. he can do what he said he would do. try to moderate the debate and get something going.He has done that. but yet again certain polititians let us all down again.Sure it is a risky strategy that relies on americans being smart enough to figure out exactly who is screwing them.(which is real risky) Not jumping at Obama because he let the likes of dem bags ruin it. when really he has no choice. He's got the fortitude in the spheres to play this game.They need to look at the elected idiots that prevented healthcare. The baggers on both sides have to be chucked out. A bagless society needs to emerge. Thu 10 Dec 2009 15:49:36 GMT+1 fluffytale http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=35#comment42 36but it doesn't effect the environment. On mars much. which is where we should all be living. or beyond...... . . . . . Thu 10 Dec 2009 15:41:32 GMT+1 fluffytale http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=34#comment41 39 well said, shame they can't see the same in the rest of the stupid polyticksMaria that polyticks screaming all the time. could we do them for "cruel and unusual punishment? Thu 10 Dec 2009 15:38:38 GMT+1 fluffytale http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=33#comment40 "It seems instead of a government-run insurance scheme providing an alternative to the big insurance firms there would be several privately-run, but not-for-profit schemes under the authority of a federal agency that currently looks after politicians' health care."Now lets look at a not for profit hospital. in the USA.http://www.peacehealth.org/oregon/News/Facilities/RiverBend/SHMC_RiverBend.htmhere's a hospital that was just recently built on a floodplain at over local objections and to the annoyance of so many. EMT personnel ,Nurses ,doctors and surgeons, complain because the architects that came up with it were hotel designers, really. So hey presto what will one day be a great hospital but at the moment is the bane of so many of the staff, but of course in this economy who wants to complain too loud.Nice rooms for the family visitors to stay in when coming from across the USA. Strange thing is so many should be treated in their own communities.And peace health hardly helps its own. Charges $150 to say "yep you need antibiotics for that cat scratch". SAyit and think how long it takes to say then grab your arm and look at it for an extra 20 seconds . ask yourself if that has any pain. then think how much was done to get $150. and was it really fair or should we just allow people to self prescribe?;) (which as Micheal Jackson proved is possible if rich enough,).No Squirrelist there is no simple answer.Just as when John Major was in. He didn't have the votes so suddenly every little group starts screaming their cause. In this case the washbags of those dems that would sell their mothers to slave traders;) there's some rude accusation keep up Gherkin.So the president could veto it. where would we be then.Still buggered.34 Maria has the answer. Stop electing long enough to do something. It might have even helped in the war effort if GW the idiot had ben able to think "Ok no mid terms i'm going to actually send enough troops to secure and fix (even though he should have really just stayed away but .).NoNo he had to go in light and have no presence. and thenthe crap hit the fan. not enough to secure the peace. Who knows if he would have . dumb attack in the first place. but them elections I watch n the USA local races mean nothing ever gets done. just the process of the process never a result. same here with the health care. So maria I'm with you that election reform would be a bit of a bonus. But then systems can stay the same and work. If only idiots don't get voted in. And it seems these "blue balled" democrats are so selfish as to think "screw the people" Thu 10 Dec 2009 15:30:54 GMT+1 _marko http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=32#comment39 To MagicKirin #30 Do you believe that people (like Sarah Palin) who do not denounce the Palestinians actually support them?(note: this is not a call to repeat a discussion about the Middle East, but more about the rationale behind your assumptions about people and whether lack of denouncement implies agreement) Thu 10 Dec 2009 15:27:36 GMT+1 SaintDominick http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=31#comment38 Ref 34, Maria"It was a sublime speech, full of truth, but also -- and probably even more importantly -- full of love."It was indeed, but that will not stop neocon extremists from transforming it into some form of apology or expression of appeasement.Regardless of how the minority may feel about this distinction, I find this recognition a reason for all of us to rejoice in the knowledge that, for once, we have a President that elicits respect from the world community, instead of those that use force, intimidation and deceit to govern. Thu 10 Dec 2009 15:09:35 GMT+1 fluffytale http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=31#comment37 "But keeping a handful of right-wing Democrat " douche bags Thu 10 Dec 2009 15:04:04 GMT+1 squirrelist http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=30#comment36 34. At 1:54pm on 10 Dec 2009, Maria Ashot wrote: "So, you see, President Obama may be the main thing America has going that still makes it look respectable in the world."Given what has begun today (with American 'advisors' present) along the Egypt/Gaza border that 'respectability' is soon going to look a very, very, thin veneer. Thu 10 Dec 2009 14:42:01 GMT+1 D R Murrell http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=29#comment35 Well that’s me decided then if Chuck Norris says that Climate Change is based on fake data then it must be true! After all a man who has saved the world as many times as he has must know what he’s talking about………… What do you mean those were just films and all he is, is an aging martial artist and ropey actor!?! Who needs science when you can drop kick an elephant unconscious?Oh Magic I guess NASA is part of the Climate Change conspiracy? Poxy left wing liberals with their spaceships and satellites, pretending man has gone to the Moon, I mean everyone knows the world is flat and the moon is made out of cheese – I’ve seen the film proof showing how a Yorkshire man and a dog went there with crackers (yes I am aware that I am contradicting myself since how could the Yorkshire man have gone to the Moon, if the Moon landings are all fake, I am just using the same type of internal logic that says cutting down country sized chunks of RAIN forests and pumping poisonous gasses has no effect on the environment)! Thu 10 Dec 2009 14:38:05 GMT+1 arclightt http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=28#comment34 @24 (bepa): Your comments are half-right. The fact is that buying and selling influence in Washington is a completely bipartisan game. George Soros is not at all ashamed to use his billions to do that, and he's an ardent leftist. He matches his counterparts on the political right.We said months ago that focusing on the Congress was the only way to get this ship headed in a good direction. It's absolutely still true, because the Congress controls the budget, the tax code, and the law. Obama controls none of the three.With regard to the public option, I oppose it primarily because (a) unlike the for-profit deliverers, it can operate forever at a loss if the Congress decides it should (remember, they control the budget, and have lied for 44+ years about what's owed, and the size of the debt, etc.), and (b) it can set its prices anywhere it wants, because it has a money supply (our tax dollars) that is "infinite" relative to the money supply of the for-profit deliverers. These two considerations mean that the Congress can use the "public option" to drive every private insurer out of business (or they can be selective, depending on who contributes to who's political campaign). It's the same as the Feds competing with private industry in every other area. Remember General Motors? When GM was determined to close dealerships to as part of trying to become profitable again, what happened? Individual Congressfolks had their hands in the stew over and over again trying to ensure that this dealer or that was "protected". Anyone believe that this WON'T happen in health care, with so much more $$$$$ at stake? At this point campaign contributions become "protection money" in this industry, just like they already are in other industries.In other areas the Feds are generally prohibited by law from competing (e.g. the Smith-Mundt Act prohibits the Voice of America from targeting an American audience). It's not clear to me why the Feds should pose as competitors in health care unless the goal is to drive private insurers out of business. If that's the goal, then be up-front about it and do it, and live with all the consequences. If that's not the goal, don't give the Congress the tools to do it with, because they'll ultimately do their best to do so, lying about it all the way.There's no question that we have to do some serious work on health care, and that the current system has serious problems. It's not clear to me, though, that our current Congress is up to the task of trying to chart a really better course. They and their staffs are too focused on who has what influence, and how they amass more political power, and how they fund their next election campaign, to do the kind of job that needed to be done.Let nobody be deceived here: Until we have public financing of election campaigns, and the shackling of the Congress to amendments requiring an honest balanced budget with no accounting tricks, a tax code that's not a "goodie bin", and mandatory year-over-year funding of every law that's actually passed, we are going to continue down this road. Correction starts with dumping the current residents of Capitol Hill--ALL of them. Thu 10 Dec 2009 14:15:12 GMT+1 Maria Ashot http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=27#comment33 Greetings from sunny, cool Ventura County.Just watched President Obama's speech & the Nobel ceremony.It was a sublime speech, full of truth, but also -- and probably even more importantly -- full of love. And it was followed by a riveting interpretation, as gentle as a caress, of Liszt's Liebestraum, by China's inspiring & impressive pianist, Lang Lang.A key moment in modern world history, and also coincidental with another turning point being worked out these very days in Copenhagen, just down the street (in the broadly Nordic geographic sense).Certainly The Story of The Day and looking forward very much to your point of view, and thoughts -- as well as everyone else's -- Mr Mardell. And of course there will also be more on the stressful debates ongoing in the US Congress. Alas, still stuck there, all these people: good ideas coming unglued through silly fussing by blindly partisan legislators already pitching battles for the 2010 & 2012 elections...Maybe the reform America most needs is actually something that would either make elections less frequent -- so there would be time for US politicians simply to get some work done instead of being in Full Campaign Mode essentially, for ten months out of every twelve...Or, alternatively, an earth-friendly moratorium on campaign or equivalently partisan communications for all but the three months immediately before an actual vote. It is an absurdity to hold some 120 million potentially voting households in the US hostage to year-round shrill politicking.Just to illustrate, let me share some of the kinds of things the rabidly right-wing are circulating in the USA (because as a matter of principle, I signed up to some of the lists on both sides of the political debate here in the States, so I have access not only to the MoveOn positions, and the White House positions, and the Green positions, but also the opposing end of the spectrum's).This morning, right here, in my mailbox: an appeal to make sure to refuse the Swine Flu Vaccine. A letter from Chuck Norris denouncing the Copenhagen meetings as based on "fake data". Ann Coulter vilifying the woman selected to run for the Ted Kennedy seat in the US Senate (proof the election of 2010 is already on) -- the argument being that this woman should be stopped because she may have been inclined to believe some children who claimed they were being sexually abused at their day care centre (decades later, we know these kinds of crimes actually do take place). And the usual peddling of survivalist gear, conspiracy theories & Sarah Palin's ghost writer's tome "just for me" for under $5. That would be US currency. So, you see, President Obama may be the main thing America has going that still makes it look respectable in the world. Thu 10 Dec 2009 13:54:14 GMT+1 KingLeeRoySandersJr http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=26#comment32 It looks like a lot of name calling is going on concerning the health care proposal. My country, The Republic of the United States of America is a totalitarian police state and the people are told what to think and do else they are not good citizens. Politics and the Mass Media are it's propaganda tools that anesthetize and create the illusion of freedom. Universal Health Care that would be wonderful it it had the peoples welfare at heart and no governor on it. Instead though it does and is no use to the people. President Obama, here is a man that puts war and government powers above the welfare of the people. The disabled and retired existing on Social Security for their only source of income are being targeted. Not until 2013 are they going to receive a increase in their incomes. That shows a country's government that certainly does not have any scruples or ethics because it is starving and economically abusing the aged and crippled! Insurance companies such as Blue Cross and Blue Shield that offer a supplementary insurance called C Plus is in fact raising it's monthly premiums. Where is the money going to come from to pay that bill? The State's Welfare system is set too low below the ability of the people to access the help they need. Prices on everything has gone up. Items once purchased have been downsized and are now being sold for a higher price. The government is stealing from the people every way they can. Money is being taken out of Social Security to pay for bills it was not created for. The government does not replace it, tells us Social Security is going broke and we can do nothing about it. Thu 10 Dec 2009 13:46:12 GMT+1 ghostofsichuan http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=26#comment31 The very same people who counldn't vote fast enough to bail-out the banking industry with a trillion dollars that has apparently disappeared or paid out in bonuses are againist providing citizens with heaalthcare. The reasons are clear. These elected officials represent big business and not the people. In both cases, the industry is calling the shots. The Congress is simply run by lobbyist who shovel money in to campaigns in exchange for votes that mean profits. As they stand up and voice the rethoric about free enterprise they pass laws that restrict competition. The system is corrupt beyond repair and will not change until the people of the United States develop a representative form of government. Thu 10 Dec 2009 13:25:47 GMT+1 SaintDominick http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=25#comment30 I just had the exhilarating experience of having one of my posts removed, apparently, because I had the audacity to mention a number of Republican "conservatives" involved in scandals in recent years in response to one of Magic's repetitive claims. It appears that only right wing claims are admissible without evidence of proof, but any criticism of the right wing is considered as potentially libelous. Coould it be that our conservative friends are more likely to take legal action when they are criticized or when their wrongdoings are cited than the lefties?Well, Magic, I definitely don't consider any of the examples you mentioned an apology. Statements of fact are simply that, and condemnation of Zionist policies are, in my opinion, long overdue. Thu 10 Dec 2009 12:47:43 GMT+1 MagicKirin http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=24#comment29 ref #29Magic, would you care to elaborate on your constant reference of an apology tour? An example of apologies would be enlightening.____________-O.KSpeech in Cairo where he said the U.S did not try to work with Arab nations and did not show respect and williness to work with them(when it is the U.S which has bent over backwards and the Arab nations refused to put pressure on the Palestinians to make concessions to Israel and return to talk)Similar speech at the U.N which was another blame Bush speech(No help)Saying the U.S has not done enough on climate change(when the data is flawed and results have been doctored)Apolgizing for Gaunatamo which is not a gestapo type prison, they are treated better than sday in a Supermax.Apologizing to Latin American countries for dictating(he should be calling out rouge nations like Cuba and Venezuela and demanding apology from Morales for expelling our ambassador without cause) Thu 10 Dec 2009 12:12:59 GMT+1 SaintDominick http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=23#comment28 Yes, the best way to achieve a goal that involves a major change in direction is to do it incrementally, but that doesn't make the defeat of the public option more acceptable to those who are convinced it is part of the solution to the socio-economic woes we are experiencing.I definitely don't understand why President Obama embraced Bush's withdrawal schedule from Iraq, why he increased troop levels in Afghanistan twice, or why he backed off from closing Gitmo when the right wing went up in arms at the suggestion of closing our Gestapo/SS style prison.Magic, would you care to elaborate on your constant reference of an apology tour? An example of apologies would be enlightening. Thu 10 Dec 2009 11:39:52 GMT+1 SaintDominick http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=22#comment27 This post has been Removed Thu 10 Dec 2009 11:01:11 GMT+1 MagicKirin http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=21#comment26 ref #24Do I blame Obama? No ...I blame a very corrupt political system that is too influenced by money and I blame the people who have used that corrupt system to satisfy their own greed and right wing ideologies._________________-What about the left? Trial Lawyer corrupt unions like the SEIU who engage in voter intimidation lets not forget the corrupt ACORN or financier like George Soros Thu 10 Dec 2009 10:34:22 GMT+1 MagicKirin http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=21#comment25 ref #13Via-Media wrote:10 St. DominickWell said. Personally I'm of the opinion that there will be some planned and unplanned actions and events that are likely to re-interest the Democratic core, though:-Guantanamo: those the prison closing is off schedule, it will surely be done before the primaries- the promised drawdown in Iraq- the end of Don't Ask, Don't Tell- the omnipresent assault from the voices of the Right (lest they forget the alternative)(closing Guanatamo if they do is a mistake it is the right place to keep the terrorist and could have jept this circus of a trial that Eric Holder is orchestrating from happening)Like you, I'm disappointed about the way the health care bill is heading. But I don't see this as an end process, but as a beginning. There was and is a lot of wisdom in Sen. Kennedy's approach (as referenced by Andy Post.) (The people of Mass have a duty to elect Brown as out next Senator to make up for the damage Ted Kennedy did. If the President has put his prestige and had put tort reform and buying across state lines a bill may have passed. But kotowing to his leftist base who did not get him elected doomed the bill)Five years down the road, perhaps in Obama's second term, I can see it quite possible that the insurance companies, given enough rope, will have hanged themselves- this is going to be their chance to shine, and when we don't see costs decreasing, or treatment improving, then the first steps will already have been taken. Especially when people see that we haven't devolved into anarchy or dictatorship.( I am not worried about a second term unless the repubs do nominate Palin. Obama popularity is already under 50 and his apology tour has been a disaster with no dividends. When he is going to take responsibility instead of blaming Bush for everything. He need to apologize to Bush at the Nobel peace prize ceremony for his disgraceful behavior) Thu 10 Dec 2009 09:41:35 GMT+1 BienvenueEnLouisiana http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=20#comment24 Bepa, it looks like you're all worked up. Today's corruption pales in comparison to historical corruption, so don't fret too much, just stay aware and vote the corrupt pigs outta office the next chance you get. Thu 10 Dec 2009 07:22:35 GMT+1 bepa http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=19#comment23 I'm an Obama supporter and right or wrong this is what I think...The US system is so corrupted by money and a powerful oligarchy that it is no longer a democracy...While other western nations have had health care for all their people for decades ..America even after this health bill, will still have millions without health care. Its even been difficult to get health care for children.When i read articles like this one:http://www.alternet.org/politics/144455/meet_the_billionaire_brothers_funding_the_right-wing_war_on_obamaabout the Koch brothers and their manipulation of the political system by using their billions of dollars..it makes me question how free America is. They are funding some of the opposition to health care and the opposition to global warming...and manipulating news organizations.So I think President Obama has to deal with some tough and powerful characters and he is trying to bring on board as many people as he can...because these people will purposefully damage America rather that change.If Obama is unsuccessful then imo America will be destroyed from within by wealthy and powerful conservatives. There will be two Americas..one wealthy and the other poor and America will be like a third world nation in its economic class split and without a strong middle class.Do I blame Obama? No ...I blame a very corrupt political system that is too influenced by money and I blame the people who have used that corrupt system to satisfy their own greed and right wing ideologies.Its government by bribery. Thu 10 Dec 2009 07:00:06 GMT+1 BienvenueEnLouisiana http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=18#comment22 "keeping a handful of right-wing Democrats happy will annoy a lot of the people who voted for the president."Mark, I completely disagree. It may annoy left-wing Democrats, but this move could potentially swing the pendulum of public support back in favor of this version of reform. It also makes the bill more palitable to "moderate" Democrats like my own Senator Landrieu who rely on moderate "swing" voters to retain their office. I'm tellin ya, this is a smart move for the Democrats in Congress and it will actually please many of the people who voted for the president. Thu 10 Dec 2009 06:54:36 GMT+1 ann arbor http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=17#comment21 As long as Big Pharma funds politicians and tort attorneys rape the system, health care costs will continue to rise.Squirrel, I would appreciate if you did not associate "conservatives" with the health insurance companies. (OK, GW was too darn close and ran interference for them.) But, Tom Daschle has done quite well ($5 million/year) by talking to them. The DNC got the majority of the insurance and drug contributions last year ('cuz the GOP was not going to win). Thu 10 Dec 2009 05:29:42 GMT+1 squirrelist http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=16#comment20 19. Via-Media:Glad you liked it; nice and cheerful and lively, we thought. The words are here, btw.(Though depending on where the ViaMedias live, might not be wise to join in too loudly, perhaps. . .) Thu 10 Dec 2009 03:43:25 GMT+1 squirrelist http://wwwsearch.bbc.co.uk/blogs/thereporters/markmardell/2009/12/paring_down_the_public_option.html?page=15#comment19 129. At 02:31am on 10 Dec 2009, Via-Media wrote:"Alvin & the Boys are born and bred capitalists".Oh. Not quite our thing. Not related to the Capitalist Ferrets of America, by any chance? We were actually quite friendly with them, but we haven't heard from them for ages. We think they may have been scared away by those Vampire and Dragon pests, even though they had guns and religion to back them up. . . Thu 10 Dec 2009 03:28:14 GMT+1