Day: October 21, 2009

Time To End Anti Trust Exemption for Health Insurance Companies

With the decision of the health care industry to go on the attack against health care reform, after agreeing last spring to support it, creates a moment to do what should have been done long ago–to remove the anti trust exemption against the health insurance companies.

The industry has had an unfair advantage over the years since the anti trust exemption was established in 1945, and millions of Americans over these years have been victimized in relation to costs and coverage.

The movement is on in both houses to change this exemption, and I say HOORAY to this action, long overdue!

Good Move To Require Pay Cuts At Wall Street Firms That Received Federal Support

It is an excellent move that the Obama Administration is promoting against Wall Street business firms that received federal assistance during last year’s financial crisis–that its top executives take major pay cuts due to the fact that they have not repaid taxpayers for their bailout.

The idea that these top executives should receive outrageous salaries and bonuses at the public expense is an insult to all Americans.

It is long overdue that these companies understand that this nation will not allow abuses and practices that show no concern for the nation’s future, but rather just selfishness and greed. This should be a popular move with the American public, and is totally justified!

Criticism Of News Network Nothing New

Republicans are showing hypocrisy when they criticize President Obama and his administration for their attack on Fox News Channel.

Former White House Press Secretary Dana Perino under President George W. Bush attacked NBC News for criticism of her boss, and Vice President Spiro Agnew under President Richard Nixon regularly attacked the news media, specifically the three major networks, the New York Times, and the Washington Post, for their reporting on the Nixon Administration.

For Perino to say that what the Obama Administration is doing was signs of a dictatorship only proves what many believed when she was Press Secretary: that she displayed large amounts of ignorance and even stupidity much of the time. Let’s just say that she was probably the biggest embarrassment ever in the position of Press Secretary to a President!

Is Obama Becoming Another Nixon?

We are reaching the silly season when we have two Republican senators claiming that there are signs that Barack Obama is becoming another Richard Nixon.

Lamar Alexander of Tennessee worries that Obama is forming an “enemies list” because of criticism of Fox News. Judd Gregg of New Hampshire, who briefly planned to be Secretary of Commerce under Obama before changing his mind, stated that he was wondering if Alexander was correct in his judgment.

The fact that Obama is coming out swinging against his critics after many months of being overly gentlemanly and bipartisan in tone does not mean that he is pursuing the worse instincts of Richard Nixon. His response was long overdue.

What can be said is that IF Obama can be as successful in diplomacy as most historians perceive Nixon was, and IF Obama can accomplish the passage of major domestic reforms as Nixon presided over, then indeed it would not be a bad thing if Obama is compared to Nixon in these positive ways, rather than the negative ways that led to the Watergate scandal and the resignation of the 37 th President in 1974.

Time To Vote Joe Lieberman Out Of The Democratic Senate Caucus

Senator Joe Lieberman of Connecticut has really changed since he ran for Vice President with Al Gore in the Presidential election of 2000.

As a major backer of George W. Bush’s intervention in Iraq in 2003, and unwilling to back off in his support as his party turned against the war, Lieberman was challenged for reelection in the Democratic Senate primary in his home state in 2006, lost the nomination, formed an independent candidacy, and ended up winning reelection over his Democratic and Republican opponents.

He then proceeded to be very negative toward his party’s Presidential nominee, Barack Obama, and to cross party lines and support wholeheartedly the candidacy of Republican Senator John McCain, a close personal friend, who flirted with the idea of choosing Lieberman as his Vice Presidential running mate before selecting Sarah Palin.

By backing McCain, Lieberman was in danger of being read out of the Democratic party caucus and of losing chairmanship of a Senate committee. But the party decided to allow him to remain in the Democratic Senate caucus despite his official independent status, and let him be the chairman of the Homeland Security Committee.

Lieberman went so far as to speak positively of President Obama in the early months of the administration, therefore making many Democrats feel satisfied.

But lately, Lieberman has been his old ornery independent self, critical of Obama on foreign policy and now unwilling to support a public option on health care. So the idea that the Democrats would have 60 votes, enough to prevent a filibuster, has now dissipated.

Therefore, there is some discussion of repudiating Lieberman, and reading him out of the Democratic Senate caucus, as simply a politician unwilling to show loyalty on such an important issue as health care.

It is my view that Lieberman has been treated too well by Democrats, and does not deserve to have their support and respect,including committee leadership. I hope that he will be voted out of the Democratic caucus for lack of loyalty by the end of this year. The way he has been acting makes it seem that he may very well be better as a true independent or even maybe as a Republican.