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  • Is the Preferance Cascade Beginning?

    Posted by Sgt. Mom on January 9th, 2014 (All posts by )

    All during late November and December of last year, I began seeing internet discussions of the looming disaster that is Obamacare – and yes, I will hang that name on the so-called Affordable Care Act, also known as the un-Affordable Care Act. The man behind the desk in the Oval Office pursued this as his singular achievement; his legislative allies rammed it through over protest, and his media allies have viciously abused those who advised caution. So it is only fitting and fair that his name get attached to it at every opportunity, especially if it brings down his whole political machine in a spectacular fashion, rather like a slow-motion Hindenberg collapsing.

    Just before the disastrous roll-out of the Obamacare sign-up websites, I began to note, among all the chaff, some sober speculations here and there; commenters speculating that once people began having to write substantial checks for healthcare insurance, out of their own pocket – that’s when the beautiful theory of quality healthcare insurance for all would run into the jagged rocks of reality. Exactly those people who had bought into it as a lovely idea, because it was fair and all – they would be disillusioned in large numbers.

    Which is what we see coming to pass; first in blog discussion threads, then the major media organizations begin dipping a cautious toe into reporting the actual impact of Obamacare on real people, I discussed it privately with certain friends who share somewhat of the same beliefs, and just this week, I overheard a vociferous discussion in a public place, among people who were strangers to me. My daughter and I were in a retail store, a defiantly old-fashioned five and dime – and up at the front, the three cashiers were discussing their insurance options under Obamacare. They were all three at a guess, about ten or fifteen years older than me, and the town where this establishment is located is a pretty well-to-do place. No, the three ladies were baffled, upset and venting freely – being of the age when chronic health problems begin to bite.

    Increasingly, the internet ‘chatter’ is speculation that the disastrous roll-out of the Obamacare website, the paltry numbers who have actually been able to sign up for health care insurance through it, and the wide-spread unhappiness with it as evidenced by the overheard discussion, all have another purpose. Yes, the Obama administration had a cunning plan all along – and all this was intended to pave the way to so-called ‘single-payer’ once those pesky private health insurance providers are sidelined. Never mind that this has and will continue to cause disruption of every sort; from employers cutting back on hiring and the number of employee hours worked, to people with serious health issues who will be affected, and those who had health insurance but don’t any more. People will suffer and some – very likely some will die because of it – but apparently the ends justify the means, if the end is a noble goal such as a national health service like Canada, or England.

    Which is apparently what all the civilized nations have, as a commenter on Open Salon had it, some months ago; one nationalized health care service coming up, for which everyone pays in taxes – or at least, those of us who do pay taxes pay for it – and everyone receives what they need in health care services. Just like … the Veterans Administration medical care, or military medical care, or the Bureau of Indian Affairs medical care, only spread nation wide and to all citizens. Yum, yum; the appetizing prospect of having your doctor not work for you, with your best interests and health at heart as a primary goal because if you are unhappy with the result, you will go elsewhere seeking a better result. Instead your medical care provider is working for an impenetrable, unanswerable bureaucracy, a bureaucracy which – no matter what its failing might be in your particular instance, is somehow never found at fault in a meaningful way, especially if you or one of your loved ones suffers or dies from that bureaucratic failing. And the worst insult of all is knowing that those elected officials who are preparing this particular s**t sandwich for us, will exempt themselves from ever having to take a bite of it.

    Interesting times. Discuss.

    (Cross-posted at www.ncobrief.com)

     

    47 Responses to “Is the Preferance Cascade Beginning?”

    1. dearieme Says:

      Answering to a bureaucracy? Could be; consider this.
      http://drmalcolmkendrick.org/2013/12/22/the-state-of-the-nhs-today/

    2. Joe Wooten Says:

      We need to force the apparachtniks to eat the crapwich too. Then we’ll hear about repeal.

    3. Joe Wooten Says:

      And before Pengun chimes in, I just have one question – Why are themajority of the car liscense plates at medical clinics in US cities on the Canadian border (International Falls) mostly Canadian if your system is so great?

    4. Jeff the Bobcat Says:

      17% or $4,500 per month. Plus $1,000 per month in new taxes and fees. That is the net effect to my company’s medical insurance premiums due to Obamacare.

      The changes haven’t been passed onto the employees through their payroll deductions yet. Key word “YET”. There will be many unhappy people when it happens. I’ve been eating the difference for a couple months to just get everyone through the holidays.

      I expect many more discussions like the one you heard in the Five & Dime, only louder and angrier.

    5. Bill Brandt Says:

      What is worrisome to the Obamacare backers is that mainly the very sick are signing up – they need the young and healthy to subsidize them.

    6. Dan from Madison Says:

      “The changes haven’t been passed onto the employees through their payroll deductions yet. Key word “YET”. There will be many unhappy people when it happens. I’ve been eating the difference for a couple months to just get everyone through the holidays.”

      We have passed our increases through. We are left with no choice. Millions of other small businesses are forced to do the same.

    7. VXXC Says:

      And this unhappiness cascade will change what?

      To the extent the government is now affected by voting, does this mean they will vote for less benefits..or…

      vote for the politician they think will make welfare work for them? The Rainmaker.

      They’ll vote for the Rainmaker.

      Further…What if instead of analyzing policies from a standpoint of cost/benefit or good results vs bad results we were to analyze them from a standpoint of POWER? And Who, Whom? [Who does what to Whom? Who has power over Whom? – Lenin].

      What Obama has done is make it rain for the bureaucracy and for crony connected industries such as Health Insurers who play along, and Pharma.
      What Obama has done is force every business and enterprise into the position of connected or finished.

      All successful Presidents since FDR have fed the government maw or connected industries. The ones that do not end up one termers. Even Truman [who was the last President to cut government] and Reagan [who held it’s growth steady] fed Defense. Both had reasons, but still.

      Apply Machiavellian analysis to our government and it starts looking very different swiftly. Especially when you judge by results over time.

      ChicagoBoyz frankly is stuck on analysis either by intentions or right/wrong, which is not how these people actually think or operate.

      This results in the same stalemate and hence default victory for the statists that has been the case for the last 100 years.

      It’s about POWER, and they are the WHO, you and I are the WHOM.

    8. VXXC Says:

      Obama won on Obamacare.

      The fact that it sucks and will put so many on welfare or near it isn’t a defeat for Obama.

      It’s perennial renewed victory.

      All the victims have to do is have children, they’ll send you a check for it.

      It’s all they ever wanted for us.

      With enough dope, liquor and video games we’ll be “happy”. And soon enough dead that we won’t be unhappy.

      You can always play powerball, and dream.

    9. PenGun Says:

      “With enough dope, liquor and video games we’ll be “happy”. And soon enough dead that we won’t be unhappy.”

      Excellent. Time to fire up some hippey crack, honey oil for the uninformed, have a Ranger, a very nice IPA, and play some Far Cry 3.

      Oh my what a terrible fate for the poor fools who have to depend on Canadian Health Care.

      I hope some of you understand it is the cost. It’s almost twice what the rest of us pay and it hurts your economy. You are less competitive because of your health care system.

    10. Michael Kennedy Says:

      More brilliance from PenGun,

      “I hope some of you understand it is the cost. It’s almost twice what the rest of us pay and it hurts your economy. You are less competitive because of your health care system.”

      The cheapest health care system is one that delivers no care at all. Canada decided to go half way some years ago (about 30) and provided the rubes with free primary care but strictly rationed specialty care and hospital care. They built no new hospitals and closed nursing schools. No new medical schools were built and the government aid hey could get all the doctors they needed from foreign graduates.

      The well off Canadians came south for care to Minnesota or Spokane. The rubes stayed home satisfied with primary care and ignorant of what they were missing. Canadian health care was once the envy of the world with insulin coming from Banting and Best, and Wiiliam Osler designing modern medical education. The government has now backed off and allowed private care to return but quietly enough that rubes like PenGun haven’t figured it out. He/she bags about running and hiking and probably won;t get the idea until he/she needs a knee replacement.

      We actually may end up with something that resembles the Canadian system that is evolving now. Subsidized care for the poor and free market for the middle and upper class. The subsidized care will be rationed, as it is in the NHS, but the poor may not notice although our lawyers are better organized than either the Canada or the IK variety.

    11. Michael Kennedy Says:

      Sorry about the typos. I need a new keyboard.

    12. PenGun Says:

      My stepfather, a Goldman Sachs alumnus, recently died. He was my friend and I still miss him. He had boatloads of money and refused to go to the states as he thought the care he got in Canada was as good as it got. We gave him a new knee at 94 years old, only because he blew it up playing tennis, we usually turn down anyone that old. We took our precious public funds and gave this monster a new knee. ;)

      Boy did he ever take us to the cleaners.

    13. newrouter Says:

      >We took our precious public funds and gave this monster a new knee.<

      pay for it yourself novel idea. earn it yourself novel idea.

    14. VXXC Says:

      American Politics are quite a world apart from Canada.

      ACA’s relationship to Healthcare is to use it as a bludgeon to destroy the independent [of government] middle class. As noted above it’s working.

      We’re not going to get Canada because you see they mean us harm. HARM not health or any improvement except for themselves is the motive of Americas elites. This is the critical difference.

      We will be lucky to get Brazil. A colder version of which is Michigan and Detroit. Poverty is spreading and it’s intended policy, not unintended consequence.

    15. PenGun Says:

      “The government has now backed off and allowed private care to return but quietly enough that rubes like PenGun haven’t figured it out. He/she bags about running and hiking and probably won;t get the idea until he/she needs a knee replacement.”

      The only ‘for charge’ services in Canada not billed to Health Canada, really the provincial health organization directly, are what Health Canada considers non essential.

      I am very careful, what I do needs good equipment, I’d have to back off a lot with an artificial knee. I do squats and deadlifts as well as calf lifts, all of which load up the knee, very carefully, and promote various types of growth including bone, cartilage and other connective tissue as well as the muscles involved. An old man just wastes away unless he works it.

    16. Kirk Parker Says:

      Sgt Mom,

      like a slow-motion Hindenberg collapsing.

      Wasn’t the original pretty slow-motion, too?

    17. Michael Kennedy Says:

      The rube states: “The only ‘for charge’ services in Canada not billed to Health Canada, really the provincial health organization directly, are what Health Canada considers non essential.”

      Here is a NY Times piece from 2006..

      “But no one is about to arrest Dr. Brian Day, who is president and medical director of the center, or any of the 120 doctors who work there. Public hospitals are sending him growing numbers of patients they are too busy to treat, and his center is advertising that patients do not have to wait to replace their aching knees.

      The country’s publicly financed health insurance system — frequently described as the third rail of its political system and a core value of its national identity — is gradually breaking down. Private clinics are opening around the country by an estimated one a week, and private insurance companies are about to find a gold mine.

      Dr. Day, for instance, is planning to open more private hospitals, first in Toronto and Ottawa, then in Montreal, Calgary and Edmonton. Ontario provincial officials are already threatening stiff fines. Dr. Day says he is eager to see them in court.”

      That was before the supreme court ruled that a “healthcare system” was not health care.

      The rubes are totally unaware.

    18. PenGun Says:

      And every one of the real charges for knee surgery went to Health Canada. It’s the law.

    19. Dan from Madison Says:

      I don’t even know why we talk about Canada. There are only 35 million people in the whole country. Over half of those people live in the top ten metropolitan areas. Apples to oranges and all that.

    20. Richard Cranium Says:

      “He had boatloads of money ”

      Which had nothing to do with him being at the head of the waiting list.

      Nothing at all.

    21. Bill Brandt Says:

      Some – Bill Kristol? – said something a few weeks ago that resonated with me – when Obamaccare first passed Obama was quite happy to have his name attached.

      Now he calls it the “[un]Affordable Care Act”

    22. T.K. Tortch Says:

      I don’t even know why we talk about Canada.

      Exactly, or for that matter, Europe. Proponents of a single-payer system in the United States imagine a uniformly administered plan intended to serve a population the size of Western Europe over an even greater geographical expanse. The various individual government-run European health services vary widely in their scope of coverage and administrative arrangement, all serving populations smaller and generally less diverse than that of the United States’. “Apples and Oranges” indeed.

      I really don’t appreciate the totemistic posture modern Liberals take towards the idea of free health care; that it is a badge of “civilization”.

      It’s not just that this crude notion isn’t true, it’s that it has made them reckless. They love he idea more than they love the people it is meant to serve, and Obamacare is proof in action. If they cared so deeply about individual citizens’ health, they would have burned through Hades before allowing that epic legislative kludge to be passed into law or take affect. It is not only causing grief, harm and confusion to the public, it is damaging public trust in the government’s competence to administer such services, and public trust is the only respectable coin they have to trade in.

      Given that, it’s no wonder that people suspect malice or ulterior motives in those who created the ACA; it doesn’t help that all along there have been Liberals who have openly discussed the ACA as a preliminary step to imposing a single-payer system. It’s hard not to believe that many of them foresaw the possibility that the ACA would be a disaster, and didn’t care what harm it caused if it led to single-payer.

      It’s that recklessness and disregard that’s the “tell”. When it comes to Power, face value doesn’t mean much. It’s power in action that makes the thing what it is, and shows true character. They do love the idea more than care for any reality, any individual. Why anyone would trust that a single-payer system created by them would work any better, I don’t know.

    23. David Foster Says:

      TKT…partly, this is due to the power-obsession in (most of) the kind of people who pursue political careers and especially those who are attracted to Leftism; partly, it is a function of today’s higher education, which too often encourages people to think and communicate in terms of abstract phrases, without really comprehending what is behind the abstractions.

      C S Lewis, in his novel That Hideous Strength, spoke as follows about his protagonist, a sociologist:

      “..his education had had the curious effect of making things that he read and wrote more real to him than the things he saw. Statistics about agricultural laboureres were the substance: any real ditcher, ploughman, or farmer’s boy, was the shadow…he had a great reluctance, in his work, to ever use such words as “man” or “woman.” He preferred to write about “vocational groups,” “elements,” “classes,” and “populations”: for, in his own way, he believed as firmly as any mystic in the superior reality of the things that are not seen.”

    24. Mike Doughty Says:

      Dr. K; I only have personal experience of one situation with the Canadian system. Some years ago my son’s fiance, a Canadian woman that he met while they were both teaching English in Korea, was at home in a small town in Ontario, awaiting her US visa to come to the US to marry my son. She noticed a mole on her leg that seemed a little “off”, so she went to her local GP. He also didn’t like the look of it and told her that he’d schedule her for an appointment with a dermatologist in Toronto. His office called her the next day and told her that the appointment was over 4 months in the future. She called my son and mentioned this to him. He told her to get in the car and drive to Baltimore, where he lived, and she did so the following day. The day after that she was seen by a dermatologist at Johns Hopkins, who diagnosed a malignant melanoma, which needed to be removed immediately. This was done within a couple days, and afterwards he told her that had she waited several months there was a high probability that it would have metastasized, with potentially deadly consequences. One data point, I know, but it reinforces your point.

    25. Subotai Bahadur Says:

      Mike Doughty Says:
      January 10th, 2014 at 3:29 pm

      Another anecdotal story. Friend of ours was [now retired] the Chief Pharmacist at the pharmacy we go to. In the 1980’s she went down to the Cayman Islands on a diving vacation, where she met and fell in love with the divemaster. He was a Canadian from Port Hardy on Vancouver Island. He kept having to go back to Canada for medical care under their national health system, due to chronic internal “disturbances”. They would keep giving him the same tests, and not come to a diagnostic conclusion and give him palliatives that really did not work. This had been going on for a couple of years.

      She got tired of him complaining, and insisted that he come to Colorado. He did. Within 24 hours he was seen by a specialist who diagnosed Crohn’s Disease. Treatment, effective treatment, started immediately and made his life a lot better. They got married a year or so later, and he moved here and became a Physician’s Assistant.

      On one trip to Vancouver Island myself [I am more than passing fond of there] I was on the ferry between Tsawwassan and Saanich and talking to a Canadian woman from an RCMP family who could not believe that earlier in the year I had had my knee rebuilt.

      Over the weekend I had gotten tired of it chronically hurting. Called my doctor Monday morning and saw him later that day. Got a referral to an ortho specialist Tuesday, who ordered an MRI for Wednesday. Surgery on Friday. Out of pocket expenses a couple of hundred dollars, the rest picked up by insurance.

      According to her, it would take over a year at least in Canada to get it done, the nearest MRI being in Alberta. At the time in Canada, there were only a couple of medical MRI machines in the entire country. There were more MRI’s being used for unregulated veterinary medicine than for people. In my small, mountain town, we had a mobile MRI riding circuit to the hospitals in our part of the state, stopping at my town’s hospital every Wednesday. We got our own at the hospital a couple of years later. I think we had more MRI’s in Colorado than in all of Canada.

      Government run healthcare is designed for the convenience of the bureaucracy and not delivering actual care to patients.

      VXXC Says:
      January 9th, 2014 at 5:35 pm

      If I may have your indulgence, here is part of something I posted elsewhere yesterday that seems on point with your post.

      Power is very definitely what is in play. And I suspect that this year is going to be what we Chinese call “interesting times”.

      Every player in politics has their own version of what they consider to be “victory”. The thing is, what those victory conditions are; are not necessarily the same thing for all the players. And each player tends to assume that what they consider to be victory is what the other players consider to be victory, and act accordingly.

      In real life, that does not hardly ever obtain. Every player has a separate concept of victory, and is playing for that and not what the other players think they are. Case in point, the administration is playing for a permanent Statist dictatorship. And they are well along in their game with most of their opponents assuming that they are playing by the rules and the Constitution for limited stakes. This ignores the fact that they have abandoned both the law and Constitution and have already committed such acts that if the law and Constitution ever come back into force; the only choices are going to be a profusion of oubliettes, a bunch of bullet-pocked walls, or lamp post ornaments strongly coming into fashion.

      The Patriot movement wants a return to the law and Constitution, and a government that is both within its bounds and is actually on the side of Americans. But they are only just now starting to realize that conventional electoral politics have been functionally rendered moot; by the actions of the regime, and by the fact that the supposed opposition party is anything but. And that as it is said: “Der Krieg ist eine bloße Fortsetzung der Politik mit anderen Mitteln.”.

      That leaves the Institutional Republicans and their allies. The Institutional Republicans have no intention of ever defeating the Democrats on any point. Aside from sharing the Democrats’ Statist beliefs; if they won, they would have to do something [or more likely NOT do anything] and be held responsible for it. They are in it for the illusion of power and the perks, believing that their honorable colleagues across the aisle will never really treat them the way that the regime’s base calls for. After all, they are all part of the Nomenklatura together. Of course, so were the Mensheviki and later the Old Bolsheviks in the 1920’s and 1930’s. It did not work out well for them.

      Their best case scenario does not include winning, but it also does not include losing so badly that even the Institutional Nomenklatura loses seats or they are reduced to less than 1/3 of Congress. If they reach that point, they might as well not bother to even show up, and they will be ignored and treated like …. well, like they and the Democrats treat us.

      They figure they can hold enough seats and power if we Conservatives just stay home, but not enough if we form a 3rd [or really a SECOND] party. Their victory conditions are to suppress the Patriot movement and cling to privilege.

      It is interesting, but not frequently noted, that there are events in train; political, economic, and foreign affairs, that will impact all the plans in play.

      Subotai Bahadur

    26. Michael Kennedy Says:

      “nearest MRI being in Alberta. At the time in Canada, there were only a couple of medical MRI machines in the entire country. ”

      Ask Natasha Richardson about the MRI situation. Oh wait, you can’t. .

      “Our system isn’t set up for traumas and doesn’t match what’s available in other Canadian cities, let alone in the States,” Tarek Razek, director of trauma services for the McGill University Health Centre in Montreal, which represents six of the city’s hospitals, told the Associated Press. Montreal and its suburubs, the second largest urban region in Canada, has a population of more than 3.6 million. Richardson was treated in the intensive care unit at Sacre-Couer and it is believed her husband, Liam Neeson, first saw his wife after her fall there sometime Monday night after abruptly leaving a Toronto film set.

      MRI ? We don’t need no stinkin’ MRI at our ski resort !

    27. Sgt. Mom Says:

      Unless I have badly miscalculated the state of mind of my fellow American citizens (and I will admit some possibility of that, because of living in a mostly conservative state, and hanging out in the internet with mostly libertarian-conservative types of the sensible and logical kind) I believe that Obamacare, or whatever they want to call this putrid abortion of a health-care-insurance law, will crash and burn spectacularly in the near future. There are simply too many people who were perfectly happy with their medical care plans, people whose medical issues were taken care of to their satisfaction in a brisk and efficient manner, people who know that their lives were saved by timely treatment, who had insurance plans they could easily afford.

      And now – to have to pay more for worse, and to look around and see that critical care will be delayed unless you pay out of pocket for concierge care, or you are one of the politically-favored groups? When it all starts to bite big, and when people with formerly-manageable conditions begin to suffer and die? When people who thought they had coverage realize that they don’t? Yeah, that will get interesting.

      I am hoping that the sentiment for repeal of Obamacare is politically overwhelming. I don’t see how the political elite can keep it in place, not when it lands so heavily across the necks of all citizens of whatever class and to their considerable personal disadvantage. It is my hope that our political class will discover that – as T.K. said “It is not only causing grief, harm and confusion to the public, it is damaging public trust in the government’s competence to administer such services, and public trust is the only respectable coin they have to trade in.” There’s only so much air cover the establishment media can provide, when the fallout hits so many people of whatever political persuasion.

    28. Michael Kennedy Says:

      Here we go.

      Humana Inc., the nation’s fourth-largest health insurer by market share, warned Thursday that the risk pool of applicants for insurance through President Obama’s health care law would be worse than previously expected.

      Ever since the botched rollout of the health care law’s exchanges in October, the policy community has been eager to know more about the mix of individuals signing up for insurance through the law.

      Because the law forces insurers to cover those with pre-existing conditions, insurers need to attract a critical mass of young and healthy individuals with lower medical costs into the exchanges to offset the cost. But the Obama administration has yet to release demographic data on those who have picked a plan through the exchanges.

      But in a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission, Humana disclosed to investors, “as a result of the December 2013 federal and state regulatory changes allowing certain individuals to remain in their previously existing off-exchange health plans, the Company now expects the risk mix of members enrolling through the health insurance exchanges to be more adverse than previously expected.”

      It couldn’t happen to a better bunch. Obama and the Dems bought them off and they say “you can’t cheat an honest man.” In 1994, the insurance industry was opposed to Hillarycare and did a good job of expressing their doubts. This time Obama “filled their mouths with gold,” as Bevin said of the specialists in Britain in 1948.

    29. Sgt. Mom Says:

      Well, my daughter did her bit through Humana – as one of those relatively healthy young adults, she got a policy through Humana last year, which costs her $86 per month. Towards the end of last year, she got a message saying that the policy is still good through this year – but by next she will have to upgrade to the un-ACA compliant package. $230 a month – not doable in the least, economically.

    30. Bill Brandt Says:

      Sgt Mom – as a veteran your daughter is eligible for VA care – they sure saved me

    31. Bill Brandt Says:

      It couldn’t happen to a better bunch. Obama and the Dems bought them off and they say “you can’t cheat an honest man.” In 1994, the insurance industry was opposed to Hillarycare and did a good job of expressing their doubts. This time Obama “filled their mouths with gold,” as Bevin said of the specialists in Britain in 1948.

      Schadenfreude…

    32. Michael Kennedy Says:

      The LA Times is in full support mode for Obama and attack mode for insurers.

      It may be possible for them to divert the blame for the Low Information types.

    33. Sgt. Mom Says:

      Bill – I have told her over and over again (and some of my veteran friends and co-workers have also done the same) – go get registered with the VA. No dice.

    34. Abbie Normal Says:

      Sgt Mom: “I don’t see how the political elite can keep it in place, not when it lands so heavily across the necks of all citizens of whatever class and to their considerable personal disadvantage.

      The MSM will blunt the worst criticism, and help the Democrats blame the Republicans for throwing wrenches into an obviously well-designed machine. As for electoral consequences, the Left has thoroughly spooged the electoral process to their continuing advantage. They’ll skate.

    35. Bill Brandt Says:

      Sgt Mom – I had Kaiser for many years – and once I turned 60 and they arbitrarily raised my premium $200/month – I couldn’t afford them.

      At least at my VA facility (Mather) the hospital is state of the art – far better appointment system – I have never waited more than 20 minutes – I think they are much better than Kaiser.

      Gosh in San Antonio with the retirement population they have to have a great facility.

      My neighbor, old Huey mechanic from Vietnam, reports a similar experience.

      I hope your daughter “sees the light”!

    36. PenGun Says:

      “Which had nothing to do with him being at the head of the waiting list.”

      LOL. UBC medical did him about a mounth after they decided to.

    37. Bill Brandt Says:

      I am not sure how much influence the legacy newspapers have any more – I doubt that “Low information” (what a nice neutral term) voters stay with the LA Times or NYT.

      Or maybe I am just hopeful.

    38. Kirk Parker Says:

      Sgt. Mom,

      perfectly happy with their medical care plans

      “Happiness” (much less “perfect happiness”) is really not the point! There are quite a few of us who weren’t perfectly happy with our existing health “insurance” plans, who nevertheless are perfectly capable of distinguishing “bad” from “worse”, and are beyond pissed at both our regrettable politicians who brought us this mess, and also our demented fellow-voters who made it all possibie.

    39. Michael Hiteshew Says:

      I am not sure how much influence the legacy newspapers have any more – I doubt that “Low information” (what a nice neutral term) voters stay with the LA Times or NYT.

      It works like a social network to become ingrained in the popular mind as fact. LAT reports X. Leftist News TV breathlessly reports that LAT is reporting X. Leftist Entertainment Network make reference to the facts, having been thusly reported by both LAT & LNTV, and therefore having the provenance of a peer reviewed academic study. Leftist politicians and paid rabble rousers and community organizers cite LAT & LNTV as factual background.

    40. David Foster Says:

      Indeed. The legacy newspapers may not have all that much *direct* influence anymore, but they have considerable *indirect* influence. You can bet that a high % of the people who write and produce TV shows are themselves heavily influenced by the NYT, etc.

      The flow of “progressive” opinion seems to work somewhat as follows:

      ACADEMIA>>>”RESPECTABLE” PRINT MEDIA>>>ENTERTAINMENT WRITERS & PRODUCERS

      and continuing

      ENTERTAINMENT WRITERS & PRODUCERS>>>ACTORS AND OTHER CELEBRETIES

      with direct feeds from academia and the “respectable” print media to people in the higher professional and economic categories, and direct feeds from entertainment media and celebrities to a much broader range of the population.

    41. David Foster Says:

      I understand there was a saying in the Royal Navy: “Today’s wardroom roast beef is tomorrow’s lower-deck stew”…suggesting, I believe, that what is being discussed among the officers today will be talked about tomorrow–probably in garbled and confused form–by the enlisted sailors.

      Nicely encapsulates the relationship between academia and the “respectable” print media, on one hand, and the entertainment media and the mass of the population, on the other.

    42. Sgt. Mom Says:

      All very apt, David – that the flow of proper progressive thought is channeled out into the pop-mind. But I wonder; when what people experience in their daily lives, and the lives of friends, neighbors and relatives becomes very bleak, and contrary to the rosy picture painted by the whole rotten media cabal, if the media won’t loose a lot of credibility? Eventually even the LIVs have to notice that their own lives are becoming nasty, poor and brutish, while the media paints a sunny picture of happy tractor drivers, crime-free streets and health-care miracles for all.

    43. David Foster Says:

      The media will not paint a picture of happy tractor drivers & health-care miracles for all. The will report poverty, people suffering and dying because of inadequate HC, etc…and they will blame it ALL on the designated targets, such as The Rich, the EEvil Corporations, etc.

    44. Michael Kennedy Says:

      Would anyone like to show me a mention of Obamacare here?

      Ignore it and it will go away.

    45. Jonathan Says:

      This “Obamacare” you speak of, wasn’t it a Chris Christie policy?

    46. Michael Hiteshew Says:

      We have always been at war with Eastasia, haven’t we? I’m sure we have been, I just heard that yesterday…

      Orwell understood how effective it is.

    47. Dr. Weevil Says:

      For an interesting (= horrifying) picture of Canada’s national healthcare system, watch Denys Arcand’s 2003 movie “The Barbarian Invasions”.