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Stephen Colbert, Back From Russia


      Stephen Colbert, Back From Russia,

      Apology For Trump

      "I’m a big enough man to apologize. And I believe I speak for the majority

      of Americans when I say this: I’m sorry you’re president.”

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      Pundit Post

      The Cartel, The Candidate And The Callous Lie


          Times of great upheaval and times that bring great suffering to many, worry to others and with those upheavals comes a silent suffering. The silent suffering that during the sell of campaign season is held up as a wrong that will be righted and any and all opportunities for a candidate to show they truly care, they claim to feel both sympathy to the victim and anger and rage at the reason.

          No more is this evident in the opioid epidemic in the US and indeed around other developed nations. The scratch of a syringe and the warm feeling of heroin coursing through veins that were never in danger of being near that most feared addiction and one that has been used as a political football with plenty of pain and suffering to manipulate for a political message.

          As you know the scourge of Opioid Addiction and the fact that this is happening in the white population is a concern to those who cannot have white kids dying with a heroin needle in their arm. Of course those in control could draw upon their experience from dealing with the drug epidemic within poorer minority areas.......but then they would have to simply ignore the problem as they have done with minorities and the most impoverished.

          But this is a different type of epidemic.......

          Firstly, it is completely avoidable and this epidemic is not an epidemic but a side effect of the side effects of powerful painkillers. The most dangerous of gateway drugs is painkiller that doctors will readily prescribe knowing full well that giving out painkillers for a broken leg to a teenager is dangling that teen over a needle. Some doctors in the US seem to be not only the drug dealers as they push new product on broken people they do so knowing that the patient is joining in a game of 'Russian Roulette'......no guns, just pills.

          Here's a statistic that should scare the hell out of anyone and everyone that 75% of heroin addiction in the US is connected to prescription painkillers, although you won't hear that in the war drugs or the most benign painkiller of them all in the form of Marijuana and the other benefits from Hemp.....although tell that to Jeff Sessions.

          What you won't hear from Sessions or any other political head on this...........Is where the real blame is. It is with both Republicans and Democrats who feed off of donations from Pharma who themselves are in bed with the Health Insurance companies who as you know are all the rage right now in the US as Trump's healthcare plan is in the process of being rammed through the Senate by a man with features similar to a tortoise.


          Now one of those departments who will suffer as a result of the Republican budget cuts will be the CDC, the same CDC who may have to treat a pandemic, or a chemical or biological attack or managing outbreaks of whatever and the same CDC who deal with the Opioids currently wrecking millions of families. The CDC itself addressed the culture of doctors being opioid street dealers requesting them to maybe lay off writing prescriptions for Oxycontin and those other deadly drugs.

          What was overlooked during the election of 2016 amongst the strong rhetoric regarding Opioid abuse was the law passed by both houses and signed by President Obama. The law known as the '21st Century Cures Act' secured bipartisan support and more importantly billions were secured for treatment and addiction services within all the states.

          However, nothing happens in a bipartisan way entirely and of course those who are responsible for this epidemic were themselves were able to negotiate certain regulations in regards to cheaper drugs.....albeit without the time needed to measure those pesky things like side effects such as......well addiction.


          Congress Is About To Pass A Bill That Shows D.C. At Its Worst — It May Also Turn Around The Opioid Crisis And Cure Cancer

          Use of OxyContin and other opioids grew to crisis levels. As federal and state governments cracked down on doctors who dispensed pills and prescriptions indiscriminately, users turned to heroin instead: Four out of five new heroin users started out by abusing prescription painkillers. The results have devastated and overwhelmed first responders and an ill-equipped and ideologically hidebound treatment system. From 2010 to 2012, heroin overdose rates doubled in 28 states, according to a 2014 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report. In 2014, more than 28,000 Americans died of opioid overdoses, an all-time high, according to the agency. There’s no reason to think the death rate has slowed since then.

          Congress, however, has finally done something. On Nov. 30, the House approved the 21st Century Cures Act by an overwhelming 392-26 vote. This Wednesday, with a 94-5 vote, the Senate did the same, sending the bill to President Barack Obama’s desk for his signature. The bill commits billions of dollars to medical research while sending $1 billion to states to help combat heroin and painkiller addiction and assist with recovery.

          But there’s a complication: Instead of cracking down on the pharmaceutical companies that fueled the boom in opioid abuse, lawmakers rewarded the industry. No health care-related bill of this size could move through Congress without the support of Big Pharma. The authors of the 21st Century Cures Act earned the industry’s support by including regulatory rollbacks that drugmakers have long sought and creating cheaper and quicker paths for drug approval by reducing safeguards. It’s as if the fire department had to pay off the arsonist to get permission to put out a fire.

          You see what they did there?

          Like most drug dealers they made themselves indispensable and made sure that they would get something from their murderous bottom line.

          Then of course you must look at the person running the US now.....the man who talked about this wave of avoidable addiction and death and the need to call the true dealers out on their wanton murder of thousands, 30,000 addiction deaths a year with four fifths of those deaths connected to prescription pills?

          Funny how you never really see the faces of those lost to the clutches of Pharma....

          Here they are....

          Here are some more........

          Sometimes the victims are those around the addicted adult.

          One pill, one painkiller, one deadly mistake.....

          Londyn Raine Robinson Sack

          Funny how some can claim they want to do so much to bring an end to the suffering of all dealing with these insidious poisons sold as relief........Not so funny when the addiction centres close and the treatments all of a sudden disappear and all those who bought the rhetoric now have to find that cheaper alternative to the expensive pills the doctor said would make them feel better.......that little bag of heroin.

          Trump lied to those facing up to addiction. His healthcare plan proves it.

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          Pundit Post

          22 Million More Uninsured Under Senate GOP Health Care Bill, CBO Reports


              The far left wing of the Democratic Party, the Sanders wing, often accuses the "establishment" wing of the party of not being progressive enough. What Sanders supporters don't seem to understand is that politics don't happen in a vacuum. In order to enact more of the kind of legislation progressives want, the Democratic Party has to be the majority in Congress and the president has to be a Democrat or someone who is willing to work with Congress to carry out the will of the people.

              Since Harry Truman was president, every president except Reagan/Bush 41/Bush 43 and now Trump have attempted to enact legislation to put in place some kind of system to provide health care for all people, or if you will, some kind of single payer health insurance plan. Reagan Republicans have fought these efforts every step of the way, despite the fact that the overwhelming majority of Reagan Republicans would benefit from such a plan as much as those who support it. And yes, I am saying the Reagan Republicans existed long before Ronald Reagan became president. Just as Trump didn't create the people who support him, but he merely spoke to them, so it was with Reagan as well.

              The only reason President Obama was able to do what Harry Truman, Dwight Eisenhower, Richard Nixon, John Kennedy , Lyndon Johnson, Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton could not do related to health care, was because during his first term he had a near super majority in the Senate and a majority in the House. IMHO, President Obama actually missed a golden opportunity to enact, at the very least, a private health insurance system with a public option. Ideally though, he could have and should have forced through a single payer system.

              The reason President Obama should have forced through a single payer system is because people who support Republicans are by and large, selfish people (among other undesirable character traits) and they honestly don't believe the government, i.e. the people acting collectively, should do certain things, one of which is ensure that every person in the country has access to adequate health care. This is a fundamental difference between people who support Democrats and people who support Republicans.

              The reason it is ok with Republicans and those who vote for Republicans that at least 22 million people are projected to lose access to health care under their replacement for the ACA, is they approach health care, like they approach everything else, focused on "me" rather than "us". Remember when President Obama made the statement that, "You didn't build that!", and Republicans retaliated and successfully ran political campaigns on, "Yes, "I" DID build that"? Member? You member! You don't member?

              My point is simply this. We have been at a crossroad in the USA for several decades related to how We The People want to govern ourselves. One of the primary weaknesses in our society is that The People don't understand how the founding fathers designed our government. The only flaw in the "practice" of the design is they practiced it by limiting access to it to white males, initially. In the 240 years or our existence, we have yet to make our government of, for and by The People, responsive to The People. For example, ninety percent of The People want common sense gun control legislation to reduce gun violence. Yet, Congress refuses to enact such legislation because of the influence of the gun lobby.

              EVERY SINGLE PERSON in this country at some point in their lives will need access to health care. However, even those who can afford insurance often incur such a large cost that it puts them in financial hardship, and millions of our citizens only have access to emergency room care, which btw is borne by all of the rest of us at a very high cost. Yet, many of The People continue to support candidates who would deny them the same kind of access to adequate health care that they themselves have. I repeat, This is a fundamental difference between people who support Democrats and people who support Republicans.

              So remember when we resist, we don't only resist Trump, we have to resist a party that does everything with a primary focus on protecting wealthy people, by dividing everyone else.


              Twenty-two million fewer people would have health coverage over the next 10 years under legislation that Senate Republicans aim to bring to the floor for a vote this week, according to the Congressional Budget Office.

              The measure would dramatically scale back federal funding for Medicaid and financial assistance that low- and middle-income people receive to make private health insurance affordable. The hundreds of billions of dollars saved would mostly be transferred to wealthy people and health care companies in the form of tax cuts. And the bill would reduce the federal budget deficit by $321 billion over the coming decade.

              Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) wants the upper chamber to pass the bill, called the Better Care Reconciliation Act, as soon as Thursday. To date, at least five Republican senators have expressed opposition to the legislation, along with a variety of health care and patient groups, including the American Medical Association, the American Hospital Association and AARP.

              Senate GOP leaders, who just released the text of the bill last Thursday, have already made major revisions, adding provisions that would lock people out of the health insurance market for six months if they go without health coverage for more than 63 days. That part of the bill is intended to prevent people from waiting until they develop costly illnesses or injuries to sign up for coverage.

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              Pundit Post

              Trumpcare/RyanCare/McConnellCare: Each One A Disaster For My Mo. Neighbors


                  5 ways the House GOP Obamacare Repeal and Replacement would affect Missourians

                  Republicans say their proposal would "rescue" Americans from the failures of the Affordable Care Act, which they have blasted as a one-size-fits-all law that forced consumers to purchase expensive insurance plans they didn't necessarily need and often could not afford. Democrats say the GOP's efforts to repeal-and-replace the ACA, or Obamacare, would strip health insurance from millions of Americans and shred the current safety net for the poor.

                  The Congressional Budget Office clearly agrees with the Democratic Interpretation. In its two reviews of bills from House and the Senate the CBO has pointed to how hard the GOP will be on the very poor, the working poor, the chronically ill, the old and women.

                  I worked as a Navigator for the Affordable Care Act in 2010 and 2011 in a rural Missouri County. I live in a farming community composed of mostly small family farms where the wage earners usually have to have jobs to supplement farming income. It was not at all unusual for most to have little or no insurance for the adults in the family relying on insufficiently staffed and provisioned clinics. Children were covered by the CHIP program.

                  I am proud to say that several dozen of my neighbors got health insurance they could afford that covered them very well thanks to the ACA. Sadly ost of them voted for Trump and the GOP believing his promises to lower their premiums, expand coverage, and improve accessibility and now nearly all of them face an end to the kind of care they have gotten used to and most of them do not realize what is coming their way.

                  Here is what I have been sharing with them based on a number of state based research findings:

                  A) The state’s uninsured rate would rise.

                  More than 200,000 Missourians have gained insurance since the Affordable Care Act took effect, with the uninsured rate dropping from 13.2 percent in 2010 to 9.8 percent in 2015.

                  Forecasts show that nearly 80 percent of those Missourians would no longer be covered. 160,000 Missourians will no longer be insured.

                  Some people would choose to drop their coverage, because the GOP repeals the individual mandate that requires most Americans to purchase insurance. Others would no longer be able to afford health insurance under the Republican plan.

                  B) The mandates on individuals and businesses would be nixed.

                  Under the Affordable Care Act, people who failed to buy insurance faced a tax of as much as $2,676 in 2016. The penalty would go away under the GOP plan.

                  However, if an individual or family dropped coverage and then decided to re-enroll, the House GOP plan would allow insurers to charge them 30 percent more for premiums for one year.

                  The ACA also requires businesses with at least 50 full-time employees to provide its workers with “affordable” insurance — essentially, a plan that cost less than 10 percent of a worker’s household income. Failure to do that currently costs business owners up to $2,260 per employee annually. The GOP plan would nix that tax, so those business owners could stop offering insurance.

                  C) Insurances rates would vary wildly (as would coverage benefits) and costs would increase significantly for older, low-income consumers.

                  Much of the criticism of Obamacare has centered on the rising cost of private insurance plans, especially for individuals buying insurance on the health care exchanges with no federal help to offset the costs.

                  In Missouri estimates are that premiums would rise for most of the insured by 15 to 20 percent over the next three years. Of course, many would be forced to drop insurance since their ages and medical conditions would permit far higher premiums for those who most benefit from having insurance. Additionally, since GOP plans allow states to eliminate many of the guaranteed coverage benefits, a number of insurance plans will be economical but will provide few benefits.

                  In general, the cost of buying insurance on the individual market would go up for low-income, older Americans, and it would go down for younger, wealthier Americans. Both plans (although with each using different formulas) offer far less in the way of tax credits to those who qualify. They actually increase the number of those who will get no credits at all because the "working poor" will be excluded. The "working poor" are those who make less than 138% of the Federal Poverty Guideline. The assumption was that those individuals would qualify for expanded Medicaid. Missouri chose to "take advantage" of the Supreme Court ruling that said states could opt out of the expansion.

                  In addition, the House GOP bill would ease limits on how much insurers could charge older consumers, who tend to have more health problems than younger ones. The GOP change is aimed at drawing younger people into the market, but it could mean higher premiums for seniors.

                  D) Missouri hospitals could take a financial hit.

                  With more Missourians uninsured, hospital officials fear they would have to provide more uncompensated care. Hospitals are required to serve patients who have no ability to pay their bills, but those costs have diminished under Obamacare, as fewer uninsured patients arrived at their doorstep. The GOP bills will leave those hospitals with much more uncompensated care.

                  The Missouri Hospital Association estimates that the Republican plan could cost the state’s hospitals $5.5 billion over the next decade. The MHA also estimates that 30 public clinics and 9 hospitals will be forced to close their doors. Hospitals would be paying for a significant portion of the new law, at the same time as uncompensated care costs explode and Medicaid comes a less reliable source of care for the poor.

                  When the hospitals take a hit so does the local economy. In many of the counties in my state the hospitals are one of the top employers. Closing hospitals hits the local economy and makes the poor poorer.

                  E) Missouri would lose federal funding for Medicaid even the state chose not to participate in the expansion option.

                  Missouri never took advantage of the Obamacare provision that allowed states to expand Medicaid, the joint federal-state health insurance program for the poor and disabled. So in some ways, the GOP plan — which phases out the Medicaid expansion — will be less painful here than in other states that have come to rely on a generous federal match to expand coverage for low-income residents.

                  But Missouri — like every other state — would still lose federal funding under the GOP bills because of other changes the measures would make to Medicaid.

                  Right now, the federal government pays about 65 percent of the health-care costs for Missourians who are on Medicaid, and the state pays the other 35 percent. Under the GOP bills, that formula would be nixed, and states would instead get a capped amount of money for each Medicaid enrollee.

                  The capped federal contributions would not increase as much as the projected cost of treating Medicaid patients, so states would face a growing tab for the program. In other words the GOP programs pass the expanding costs on to the states such that they become responsible for more and more of the costs of Medicaid.

                  Critics say that would blow a hole in state budgets, prompting governors and state legislators to cut benefits and restrict eligibility for low-income residents. Supporters of the bill say Medicaid’s costs are unsustainable and the GOP bill puts the program on a more fiscally responsible course.

                  In Missouri the largest single bloc of Medicaid holders are the elderly with more than half of these in nursing homes. If Medicaid is reduced what happens to them. Medicaid in Missouri is generally for the very poorest who can barely hold on now. What happens to them?

                  I am a member of two Indivisible Groups that are focusing on the Health Insurance Bills. In meeting after meeting with GOP staff and members of Congress.....all they have is generalizations and platitudes.....they cannot respond substantively to concerns and questions. In my opinion they know how terrible their bills are.

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                  Pundit Post

                  The War On Seniors


                      The War On Seniors


                      The Congressional Budget Office just released its estimate on the impact of the Senate’s health care repeal bill ― and it’s even worse than the House’s bill. These numbers are a terrifying confirmation that Trumpcare is the first part of a Republican war on seniors.

                      The CBO confirms that the Senate’s version of Trumpcare would raid $772 billion from Medicaid by 2026 ― and that's BEFORE the largest cuts kick in. If the bill passes, 15 million Americans would lose their coverage next year, a number that would climb to 22 million by 2026.

                      The bottom line: Americans will suffer and die so that Donald Trump and Republicans can give huge tax breaks to the rich.

                      Six Republican Senators appear concerned over Trumpcare’s devastating Medicaid cuts. If three of them vote no, this bill will fail in the Senate. Sign the petition. Send them a message now!

                      Senators Shelley Moore Capito (WV), Bill Cassidy (LA), Susan Collins (ME), Dean Heller (NV), Lisa Murkowski (AK), and Rob Portman (OH) have objections to the bill. We can stop this in the Senate!

                      Send a message to the Senate: Vote NO on Trumpcare!

                      These devastating cuts will disproportionately hurt older Americans by creating caps on how much Medicaid can pay per person, eliminating subsidies for out-of-pocket expenses such as co-payments and deductibles, allowing insurance companies to charge older Americans five times as much as younger people, and making nursing home care unaffordable.

                      On top of all of that, Trumpcare also raids billions from the Medicare trust fund. That sets up Speaker Paul Ryan’s plan to go after Medicare next.

                      Three Senators can stop Trumpcare in its tracks. Add your voice!

                      Thank you for standing with us,

                      Michael Phelan
                      Social Security Works

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                      Pundit Post

                      "Banana Republicans"​


                          "Banana Republicans"

                          By Ray Cunneff


                          I found a great deal of the commentary over this past weekend very depressing. There was talk of "constitutional rot", the electorate's lack of understanding how our government works, the educational system's failure to teach civics and the power consolidation of oligarchy.

                          It seems that no matter how crazy Trump becomes, his base of supporters is sticking with him. His latest tweet-storm this morning, basically accusing Obama of treason for colluding with Russia is just one more example of his twisted, often contradictory logic. And I learned a new term to describe the sorry state of today's GOP, "banana Republicans".

                          This Senate health care bill is not only a calamity for millions of Americans, it is likely to pass. Those four or five senators who have expressed reservations about the bill will inevitably wilt under pressure from McConnell.

                          It's not about health care at all but another tax cut for the super-rich and will be jammed through regardless of the CBO report (which we haven't yet seen) for no other reason than to score a political victory. Many of the senators have not heard from their constituents or have even read the bill.

                          Of course, the ultimate irony is that it's the red states that will suffer the most from this cruel legislation.

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                          Pundit Post

                              This will test the resolve of the country given that it has not been under any similar attacks that have occurred in Europe. The attacks in America has been at the hands and weapons of those that subscribe to White Supremacy (Racism) in this country.

                              It is still interesting that the one country that supposed to have been behind the 9/11 attack and the same country that Congress has now allowed the families of the victims to sue is not on the list. This speaks volumes regarding the American people's ability and willingness to support the country when it seems to support those that utilizes terrorism as a basis for strength and obtaining wealth in this country and abroad.

                              The American people will continue to be had, took, hoodwinked, bamboozeled, led astray, and run amok as long as they allow this administration to remain in control. This is an important time in history where all those that oppose this administration must unite for at least one common goal and that is the preservation of life. Anything less, it will cause the people to become totally lost and loathe by the known universe.

                              Supreme Court allows limited version of Trump travel ban to go into effect and agrees to hear the case in the fall - The Washington Post

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                              Pundit Post

                              Bad News Good News


                                  Sure the GOP healthcare plan is the single biggest assault on America's poorest and most vulnerable and flies in the face of their bullshit about being in the round 'Prolife'.......

                                  Bad News.......sure you might die......but hey....look on the brightside......

                                  Shovel ready jobs people.........Good news??

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                                  Pundit Post

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