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Monday, December 09, 2013

Let Ukraine decide for Ukraine.



Ukraine riot police enter central Kiev amid rumours of attack on square

Opposition leader Vitali Klitschko calls on women and children to leave Independence square


theguardian.com, Monday 9 December 2013 07.38 EST


Cordons of riot police moved into central Kiev early on Monday afternoon in what appeared to be preparations by the Ukrainian government to regain control of Independence square and Kiev city hall, occupied by anti-government protesters for the past week.
The move comes after a week of protests against President Viktor Yanukovych's decision not to sign an integration pact with the EU, culminating in the biggest protest since the 2004 Orange Revolution on Sunday, when hundreds of thousands of people flooded central Kiev. The protest ended with the city's statue of Lenin toppled by protesters and attacked with hammers.
Yanukovych released a statement on Monday saying he supported the idea of an "all-nation round table" to include the country's three former presidents to find a solution to the political crisis. "Such a round table could lead to more understanding," said a statement from the presidential press service.
The EU's top diplomat, Catherine Ashton, will also arrive in Kiev on Tuesday. European commission president José Manuel Barroso said she would try to help defuse "the very tense solution that Ukraine is living today".

As the riot police moved into the centre of town on Monday, a priest conducted a religious service from the stage, accompanied by chanting from the assembled crowd, a fraction of Sunday's masses but still numbering several thousand.
"It's the third time I'm here and I'm not afraid," said Bogdan Tsap, 66, from Stary Sambir in western Ukraine, standing by his tent. Several lines of riot police and interior ministry troops wearing helmets and holding shields blocked the roads leading to Independence square and city hall.
"We are here to keep order, we are not going to apply force," one of the officers near Independence square said, refusing to give his name. However, the Kyiv Post newspaper reported a "top government source" saying a decision had been taken to storm the square. Heavyweight boxer Vitali Klitschko, one of the three main opposition leaders, called on women and children to leave the square as rumours spread that it could be stormed.

Three central metro stations were closed over apparent bomb threats, with rumours spreading among the protesters that the metro could be used to deliver soldiers into central Kiev.
The protesters have dug in at the square, with a hardcore of several hundred setting up a makeshift camp with tents, log fires and soup kitchens, while a large stage blasts pop music and speeches by opposition leaders. On Sunday, protest leaders gave Yanukovych 48 hours to fire his prime minister, and said if he did not they would march on his country residence. There have also been demands for snap parliamentary and presidential elections.

As the riot police rumours spread civilians were evacuated from city hall, which has become a makeshift dormitory for protesters since it was occupied a week ago, though hundreds later returned. A few people in hard hats manned barricades on the stairs.

187 comments:

  1. bob, quite your whining about folk posting as anonymous and get a log in. YOU CAN DO IT YOURSELF, you do not need your daughter. I've told you how - why don't you just do it? If you can't remember that far back (like a week) then simply go to google.com and select sign in. When presented with the sign in page select "sign in with different account" then select "add account" and follow the instructions from there.

    Quit your whining. Be a master of your own destiny and quite hanging on to the apron strings of your daughter.

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  2. Okay, bets are being taken now for how many posts are made on this thread before the actual topic changes to you know where.

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  3. Pro-EU Ukrainian protesters on Sunday, December 8, toppled a statue of the Soviet Union's founder Vladimir Lenin in Kiev after hundreds of thousands massed for a new protest in an increasingly ten…se standoff with President Viktor Yanukovych's government.

    They're just now pulling down Lenin. They're putting Farmer Bob to shame, he's just now upgrading from AOL on Windows 3.0.

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  4. Mexican army has taken control of major port in effort to combat drug cartel

    Lazaro Cardenas, Mexico — This strategic port has been a major moneymaker for the powerful Knights Templar drug gang, which extorts millions from the city’s businesses and smuggles in meth-making chemicals from Asia.

    But President Enrique Peña Nieto’s decision this month to deploy troops to Lazaro Cardenas marks a new attempt to sever the cartel’s economic lifeline by putting a stop to its criminal activities here.

    By replacing hundreds of local police and customs officials, many suspected of collaborating with drug cartels, and installing soldiers in top port positions and at highway checkpoints, the government hopes to improve the international image of a port that in recent years has become a key transit point for Asian goods heading to the United States.

    But some port officials and residents in this Pacific seaside city worry that the presence of the troops, patrolling roads and waterways in camouflage, could scare off trade and investors in the short term, at a time when port business is booming.

    Gateway to and from Asia

    Over the past decade, cargo business to Lazaro Cardenas, the deepest port in Mexico, has more than doubled, reaching an estimated 36 million tons this year and putting it in the top 10 of Latin American ports. Japanese cars, Chinese clothes and toys, and giant steel beams are shipped in and run by train through Mexico, north to Texas. Ships laden with Mexican oil and minerals motor out to Asia.

    But amid that trade, mafias have earned soaring profits from extortion and illicit business, in particular from moving precursor chemicals for methamphetamine, much of which makes its way to the United States.

    The Knights Templar, a ­pseudo-religious group, is believed to wield the most influence at the port.

    “The Knights Templar have enormous control over Lazaro Cardenas,” said a security official in Michoacán , the western Mexican state that contains Lazaro Cardenas, speaking on the condition of anonymity in order to discuss the matter candidly. “They are less involved in drug trafficking than they are in charging for each container that enters.”

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/the_americas/mexican-army-has-taken-control-of-major-port-in-effort-to-combat-drug-cartel/2013/11/30/ee768458-523b-11e3-9ee6-2580086d8254_story.html


    bob - the Authentic Anonymous

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    1. .

      Isn't the Knights Templar cartel the one that spun off the Illuminati cartel in Juarez?

      .

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      That is why they are talking Alan Mulally taking over.

      .

      Delete
  6. Greenspan: Economic 'Uncertainty' Greatest I Have Known
    http://www.newsmax.com/StreetTalk/Greenspan-economy-wanders-businesses/2013/12/08/id/540682?ns_mail_uid=64889406&ns_mail_job=1549367_12092013&promo_code=15DE4-1

    "the issue goes beyond that, because, even though we have very major expansion of the balance sheets, it has not essentially spilled over in lending by commercial banks into the usual pattern that one sees when reserves go up,"

    "The first and most important issue to recognize in the United States — and it's a problem to an extent in other countries as well — is that the level of uncertainty about the very long-term future is far greater than at any time I particularly remember," Greenspan said.

    "the extent of government intervention has been so horrendous that businesses cannot basically decide what to do about the future," Greenspan said.

    For example, two years ago the percentage of business cash flow that was invested in any form of capital asset was at the lowest level since 1938, he says.

    "It’s improved somewhat [since then], but it is still extraordinarily low. And what we're observing there is with all this money coming in, all the profit, the cash flow, it cannot find adequate investments."

    "But there's a different type of problem that's going to be occurring. None of us has handled this before,"

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  7. Putin does not want to let Russia be Russia

    (Reuters) - President Vladimir Putin tightened his control over Russia's media on Monday by dissolving the main state news agency and replacing it with an organization that is to promote Moscow's image abroad.

    The move to abolish RIA Novosti and create a news agency to be known as Rossiya Segodnya is the second in two weeks strengthening Putin's hold on the media as he tries to reassert his authority after protests against his rule.

    Most Russian media outlets are already loyal to Putin, and opponents get little air time, but the shake-up underlined their importance to Putin keeping power and the Kremlin's concern about the president's ratings and image.

    The head of the new agency, to be built from the ashes of RIA Novosti, is a conservative news anchor, Dmitry Kiselyov, who once caused outrage by saying the organs of homosexuals should not be used in transplants.

    "The main focus of ... Rossiya Segodnya (Russia Today) is to highlight abroad the state policy and public life of the Russian Federation," said a decree signed by Putin.

    Sergei Ivanov, the head of the presidential administration, told reporters that the changes were intended to save money and improve the state media.

    But the new organization has strong similarities to APN, a Soviet-era news agency whose role included writing articles about "the social-economic and cultural life of the Soviet people and items reflecting Soviet society's point of view on important internal and international events".

    RIA said in an English-language article about Putin's step: "The move is the latest in a series of shifts in Russia's news landscape which appear to point towards a tightening of state control in the already heavily regulated media sector."

    Rossiya Segodnya's focus on building up Russia abroad could solidify Putin's grip on information by further limiting sources of news for Russians whose TV screens are dominated by state-controlled channels.

    Putin's decree appeared to have little effect on the two other major Russian news agencies, state-run Itar-Tass and private Interfax, but it could benefit both by making RIA's replacement less of a competitor domestically.

    Itar-Tass is the successor of the Soviet official Tass agency, while Interfax has more leeway as a private agency but is restricted by the Kremlin's dominance.

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  8. NSA spied on 'World of Warcraft,' other online games, leaked documents show

    According to the Guardian, real-world agents were deployed into those virtual worlds to extract communications, recruit potential informants and keep tabs on potential terrorists.

    “So many different U.S. intelligence agents were conducting operations inside games that a ‘deconfliction’ group was required to ensure they weren't spying on, or interfering with, each other,”
    wrote the Guardian.

    The documents don’t indicate whether the push led to any usable information, nor whether any terrorist plots were detected or foiled in "World of Warcraft" or other virtual environments.

    The NSA, Microsoft and Second Life creator Philip Rosedale all declined to comment, the paper noted. But Blizzard Entertainment, the creator of "World of Warcraft," said it was unaware of any attempts to monitor terrorist activity in its game.

    "We are unaware of any surveillance taking place," a spokesman said. "If it was, it would have been done without our knowledge or permission."

    http://www.foxnews.com/tech/2013/12/09/nsa-spied-on-world-warcraft-other-online-games/?intcmp=latestnews

    http://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/dec/09/nsa-spies-online-games-world-warcraft-second-life


    NSA files: games and virtual environments paper
    NSA document, written in 2008 and titled Exploiting Terrorist Use of Games & Virtual Environments
    Revealed: spy agencies' covert push to infiltrate virtual world of online games


    http://www.theguardian.com/world/interactive/2013/dec/09/nsa-files-games-virtual-environments-paper-pdf


    bob - the Authentic Anonymous

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  9. That is too bad. I have found RT to be at least as credible as CNN and far more willing to gore sacred cows. They did tread lightly around Putin.

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    1. I see the censor is still scared of the truth...

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  12. Army kills four city workers in Guerrero
    Saturday, December 7, 2013 | Borderland Beat Reporter un vato

    CHILPANCINGO, Gro. (proceso.com.mx).- Four officials with the Arcelia, Guerrero, ayuntamiento (county government), among them the Director of Municipal Traffic (police), Mario Uriostegui Perez, "La Mona", and the deputy director of the same agency, Josue Gavinez Ramirez, died in an alleged confrontation between soldiers and armed civilians in the vicinity of the town of Palos Altos, located on the border of the Tierra Caliente (Hot Country) of Guerrero and the southern part of the State of Mexico.

    The Army identifies "La Mona" as the father in law of Johny Olascoaga Hurtado, "El Mojarro", one of the main leaders of the criminal organization "La Familia", which operates with impunity under the protection of the civilian and military authorities in the Northern and the Tierra Caliente regions of the state.

    In response, at least a hundred residents of Palo Alto are using heavy vehicles to block the highway that connects Guerrero with the southern part of the State of Mexico, at the location known as El Ushe, where they have detained soldiers, ministerial police officers and dozens of drivers.

    The blockade extended to the entrances and exits of the county seat of Arcelia, located on the Iguala-Ciudad Altamirano federal highway.

    The protesters are demanding clarification of the incident and they accuse the military personnel with the 102 Infantry Battalion, based in San Miguel Ixtapan, Tejupilco Municipality, State of Mexico, of executing the father in law of "El Mojarro" and his three fellow passengers.

    According to official reports, around 5:30 a.m. this Friday, a convoy from the 102 Infantry Battalion intercepted four men who were traveling in a white Nissan pickup near a dirt road located 500 meters from the highway that connects the town of Palos Altos, Arcelia County, with the Teloloapan-Ciudad Altamirano federal higheay.

    Without any explanation being given at this time, the soldiers opened fire against the vehicle and shot the passengers.

    The men killed by the Army were identified as Arcelia County government workers, among them the Director of Traffic (police), Mario Uriostegui, 45 years old, who was carrying a shotgun, as well as the deputy director of that same agency, Josue Gavinez Ramirez, 29 years old, who was driving the pickup, and two employees in the cultural area, Marcelo Martinez Alarcon and Juan Martinez Estada.

    At this time, the PRI mayor of Arcelia, Taurino Vazquez Vazquez, has not taken a position with respect to these events.

    http://www.borderlandbeat.com/search?updated-min=2013-01-01T00:00:00-07:00&updated-max=2014-01-01T00:00:00-07:00&max-results=50


    Roberto

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  13. Betting is now closed, the thread has officially shifted over to that sandy beach on the Eastern Med, and the winner is allen, at only post number twelve.

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    1. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

      Delete

    2. They verbally attacked each other with Mao's quotations,
      making cynical use of his guru-like elusiveness --
      it was easy to select a quotation of Mao's to suit any situation,
      or even both sides of the same argument.

      Jung Chang, Wild Swans: Three Daughters of China

      Delete
    3. .

      Nonsense, T.

      You brought it up at post 3 with your little game.

      .

      Delete
    4. Iran has executed 529 people this year, including more 300 since President Hassan Rouhani assumed office in August, according to a tally compiled by the Iran Human Rights Documentation Center (IHRDC).

      The number of executions have significantly spiked since Rouhani took office, leading some to argue that this clashes with his image as a moderate reformer.

      Iran now has the dubious honor of being the global leader per capita in executions, according to the IHRDC.

      Delete
    5. (CNN) -- China, the United States and three Middle Eastern nations carried out the most executions last year, rights group Amnesty International said Wednesday, but a global trend toward ending the death penalty persisted.
      There were at least 682 confirmed executions worldwide last year, two more than in 2011, according to the group.
      China is believed to have executed several thousand people last year, Amnesty said, but government secrecy makes it impossible to confirm exact numbers.
      "The lack of reliable data does not allow Amnesty International to publish credible figures for the use of the death penalty in the country," the rights group said. "However, available information strongly indicates that China carries out more executions than the rest of the world put together."
      Iran carried out at least 314 executions last year, Iraq at least 129 and Saudi Arabia at least 79. In the United States, 43 people were executed across nine states. Sixth on the list was Yemen, with at least 28 executions.

      Delete
  14. .

    On Health Exchanges, Premiums May Be Low, but Other Costs Can Be High

    Until now, it was almost impossible for people using the federal health care website to see the deductible amounts, which consumers pay before coverage kicks in. But federal officials finally relented last week and added a “window shopping” feature that displays data on deductibles.

    For policies offered in the federal exchange, as in many states, the annual deductible often tops $5,000 for an individual and $10,000 for a couple.


    http://www.nytimes.com/2013/12/09/us/on-health-exchanges-premiums-may-be-low-but-other-costs-can-be-high.html?hpw&rref=politics

    Obamacare is hardly simple. It takes some work to figure out which policy to take or which you can afford.

    .

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    1. It's very important to understand that "deductibles" in Health Insurance don't work the same way as deductibles in, say, auto insurance. It's not a matter of having to satisfy the entire deductible before the benefits start to kick in.

      Also, and this seems to Never get talked about, those at 250% of Poverty limit, and below, get subsidies applied to their Deductibles (in addition to their premium subsidies.)

      Delete
  15. I googled aca subsidy calculator, and came up with the Kaiser site.

    I'm not sure the link will work, but here goes

    Kaiser site (maybe)

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    1. Okay, it "took" that time.

      You'll find out, there, that low income individuals can get a policy for $0.0 premium, that covers 96% (I think it was - I'm operating from memory, here) of medical costs.

      So, a Doctor Visit would run three or four dollars. A twenty dollar prescription, would cost, maybe, a dollar.

      I think a lot of people that have been parroting the republican line, without doing the research, are going to be shocked.

      Delete
    2. Edit:

      The Bronze Plan is typically "zero" at low incomes, but it looks like you will normally pay 40% of expenses out of pocket (up to annual out of pocket limit.)

      The Silver normally covers about 94% of expenses, but the premium seems to run between twenty-something to forty dollars per month.

      Delete
    3. Oh, something else; someone mentioned the other day that they were going to have a colonoscopy.

      Preventative Care, such as colonoscopies, are covered, With No Deductibles, under the new law.

      Delete
    4. .

      How can you come up with these numbers when every state and every individual is different?

      .

      Delete
    5. You didn't go to the calculator, did you? :)

      I used U.S. average, and Mississippi (they were the same in the instances I looked up.)

      And, I was using 21 yr olds, since that seems to be where the interest is right now.

      And, other than number of kids, that's pretty much it. There are no Health questions.

      Delete
    6. .

      No. I didn't go to the website.

      What you have quoted was an average prices for a specific group. There is no way of knowing whether it is applicable to 'average' Americans.

      My comment above was merely a caution that people have to be fully aware of what they signing up for.

      The bigger question, what this will mean to the nation generally, will likely take a year to answer.

      .

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    7. Yeah it is. Quit commenting on it if you're not going to do a minimum of investigation. There are only 3 age groupings, for premium purposes, and a sliding scale for no. of people in family to income.

      It's a really easy calculator. Put in income, and age, and voila.

      Delete
    8. As for effect on the nation, it should be mildly stimulative.

      I say, "mildly," because, at its bottom, it's a transfer from those making $250K and over, to, in many (most?) cases, people making $250K, and over - with a short "reroute" through the lower 99%.

      Delete
    9. Actually, it's not really a "reroute." The patient never touches the money. The upper 1% is paying the upper 1% to provide some services to the 99%.

      Yeah, yeah, I know; I'm way oversimplifying. There are nurses, and receptionists, and so forth involved, but . . . . . .

      Delete
    10. .

      Don't tell me to quit commenting on it you dumb shit.

      .

      Delete
    11. Well, go ahead then; embarrass yourself.

      Delete
    12. .

      I'll take my chances.

      When pressed about the high costs of the Affordable Care Act, its defenders have answered that most of those saddled with higher premiums and deductibles will actually not be hurt because they will be given subsidies. But as the Times points out, the idea that the ACA will be dishing out widespread subsidies is a myth:

      Many people buying insurance on the federal and state exchanges are expected to qualify for subsidies. But in the first month, for reasons that are not clear, only 30 percent qualified. The others must pay the full premium and will be subject to the full deductible.

      Most people shopping in the exchanges are expected to choose bronze or silver plans, which provide less generous coverage than most employer-sponsored plans.

      A study by Jon R. Gabel and colleagues at NORC, a research organization affiliated with the University of Chicago, found that 65 percent of employees in group health plans had higher-value coverage that would be classified as gold or platinum under the Affordable Care Act.


      http://www.commentarymagazine.com/2013/12/09/aca-obamacare-not-so-affordable-deductibles-premiums/

      This is from the NYT and the Kaiser Foundation no the Rufus Trust Me website.

      .

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  16. .

    Contractural obligations? Well there are contractural obligations and then there are contractural obligations.

    The Michigan constitution says you can't cut pension obligations for public workers, yet...

    As we passed the fifth anniversary of the peak of the financial crisis this fall, the giant insurance company AIG was prominently featured in the retrospectives. AIG had issued hundreds of billions of dollars of credit default swaps (CDS) on subprime mortgage backed securities. When these mortgage-backed securities failed en masse, AIG didn't have the money to back them up.

    This would have forced AIG into bankruptcy. However Lehman had declared bankruptcy the day before and the world was still engulfed in the aftershocks. The Bush administration and the Federal Reserve board decided that they would stop the cascade of failing financial institutions and bail out AIG. As a result, the government agreed to honor all the CDS issued by AIG and effectively became the owner of the company.

    Chicago has been in the news recently because its mayor, Rahm Emanuel, seems intent on cutting the pensions that its current and retired employees have earned. Emanuel insists that the city can't afford these pensions and therefore workers and retirees will simply have to accept reduced benefits.

    If the connection with AIG isn't immediately apparent, then you have to look a bit deeper. Folks may recall that AIG paid out $170m in bonuses to its employees in March 2009 with its top executives receiving bonuses in the hundreds of thousands of dollars...


    http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2013/dec/09/chicago-detroit-pensions-might-be-cut

    .

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    1. .

      There are contractural obligations for the 99% and then there are contractural obligations for the 1%.

      .

      Delete
  17. The colonoscopy mentioned would be me.

    ReplyDelete
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    1. .

      :)

      Did you have it?

      I won't ask how much you enjoyed it.

      .

      Delete
    2. No, not yet, Quirk. Working up to it.

      Delete
    3. The worst part is drinking that horrible crap the night before.

      Delete
    4. .

      Working up to it?

      How...

      Naw, probably better not to know.

      .

      Delete
    5. One GALLON of that horrible crap.

      Neither me nor my wife got all that shit down in 4 hours, or so.

      She got the tube down the mouth torture also, and puked as I was driving her home.

      Luckily, I had bought something at radio shack, so when she warned me, I quickly emptied the plastic shack sack and she had a vomit comet container.

      Delete
  18. Weak Japanese economic data released Monday added to questions about whether the aggressive economic program of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, known as "Abenomics," can sustain its recent momentum, or will be derailed by a rise in the sales tax in April. And while no one is predicting a recession yet, some have begun talking about that possibility, not ruling one out should other problems arise.

    "There is no driver of growth," said Yasunari Ueno, chief market economist at Mizuho Securities.

    ReplyDelete
  19. .

    One Billion and Rising Campaign to fight violence against women coming to major cities on January 8, 2014

    http://www.theguardian.com/society/womens-blog/2013/dec/09/one-billion-rising-2014-campaign-end-violence-against-women-justice

    .

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  20. Replies
    1. .

      Couldn't pull up the video.

      From the solicitation below, it looks like one of those porn sites where you have to drop in a few coins to see the action.

      .

      Delete
    2. .

      Not that I have ever visited any of those places.

      I mean...

      Well, I just heard. Ya know?

      .

      Delete
    3. When I click on it, it goes to a CNS (Conservative News Service) page that has the video.

      Your computer must have a well worn rut to other pages where Quirk ruts his stuff.

      Delete
  21. Rufus IIMon Dec 09, 04:29:00 PM EST

    "It's very important to understand that "deductibles" in Health Insurance don't work the same way as deductibles in, say, auto insurance. It's not a matter of having to satisfy the entire deductible before the benefits start to kick in."

    ---

    OK, Helpful Genius Insurance Guy, How DO they work in Health Insurance?

    I've always paid 15 bucks per doctor visit because my deductible was 15 bucks.

    ...but I'm just an innocent babe in the woods confronting Socialized Healthcare for the first time.

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    1. .

      You are talking Co-Pay, Doug.

      A deductible is the amount you must personally pay before the insurance kicks in and starts paying.

      I have never heard of what Rufus is talking about with regard to deductibles either.

      .

      Delete
    2. .

      A co-pay is a cost savings arrangement where a person pays a specific charge for a specific medical service - e.g. $20 for an office visit.

      .

      Delete
    3. All I know is when we had 6 figure hospital bills, we paid next to nothing, but obviously that was before Obama, Rufus, and other medical experts explained how shitty our insurance really was.

      Feels great not to have it anymore.

      Only have to wait six more months to get Medicare, if I'm lucky.

      ...and see if my Doctors will take poor bastards on Medicare, as our Supreme leader steals hundreds of billions from it for "Affordable Care"

      Delete
    4. It's not "socialized" medicine, Quirk. These are the biggest insurers in the world, selling policies in a competitive marketplace (albeit, a more regulated marketplace.)

      If you have a $1000.00 Deductible in your car insurance, the deductible has to be satisfied before the insurance company pays anything.

      But, if you have a $4,500.00 Deductible on, say, a Silver Plan, that simply says that your Co-Pays for the year can't exceed $4,500.00. In many cases, the policyholder will only pay Six Percent of his/her expenses during the year. Only in the most catastrophic situations (Cancer, etc) would the insured ever reach his/her yearly maximum deductible.

      Delete
    5. .

      A deductible is the amount of money you must pay each benefit year for medical care expenses before your insurer begins to reimburse the costs. There are individual deductible amounts and family deductible amounts.

      I assume that any subsidies available could be used against premiums, co-pays, or deductibles, but I would be very surprised if an insurance company would start paying anything before the deductible was covered.

      But heck, Rufus has been a-studying this stuff. Don't embarrass yourself.

      I am not sure how the subsidies are paid out, whether it is monthly or in a lump sum but regardless, it could cause problems for people with high deductibles. The worse case, as described in the NYT article would be for those who have the high deductible and don't qualify for the subsidy. (70% so far in one study. Nobody seems to know why. Perhaps it is another glitch in the system.)

      For those who don't qualify yet end up with a deductible of $5,000 there is good news and bad news.

      The good news is that overall health care costs would drop dramatically.

      The bad news is it would drop because the person couldn't afford to pay the high deductible. Of course, that would be like having no insurance at all.

      Wait...

      .

      Delete
    6. yeah, Doug, you had a Great, GROUP POLICY. Guess what? YOU DON'T HAVE IT ANY MORE. THEY TOOK IT AWAY FROM YOU.

      YOUR WIFE DIED, AND THEY DROPPED YOU.

      Of course, I don't believe a fucking thing you're saying. The last time you started posting this shit you were all over the map. First you were one age. Then you were another age. Then you described buying one type of policy with premiums and deductibles that were all over the place, and then you said, in essence, mea culpa, and started describing a Medicare that I've never heard of.

      You're just shooting the shit.

      Delete
    7. I never misrepresented my age, you lying SOB.

      Go back to kicking Allen around for being a Jew or something.

      Delete
    8. And, Quirk, you're just babbling. On one hand you admit that you don't know how deductibles work, and proceed to prove it, and then proceed to make all sorts of false assumptions.

      Just go to the Kaiser calculater. It's considered to be very accurate, and it will explain a lot of what you don't know.

      Delete
    9. We had the same HMSA insurance here for 20 years. I told you it was group under Marriot.

      If you have to think either I'm lying, or we were getting screwed somehow with this insurance so be it.

      If you have to think the helpful lady in Honolulu was lying to me about Medicare, so be it.

      I think you judge others by yourself.

      Just keep telling yourself Socialism's gonna work, this time, you'll be fine.

      Delete
    10. Doug, you most certainly did. Go back and check. None of what you were typing made any sense after a few minutes. Bring those comments forward, and prove me wrong.

      Delete
    11. Thanks for reminding me: I asked for you to explain to us Rubes how Healthcare Deductibles Work.

      You haven't, yet.

      Delete
    12. .

      You ass.

      The term is sarcasm. Look it up.

      You claim to be an ex-insurance salesman and don't even know what a deductible is.

      Go diddle with you computer old man.

      .


      Delete
    13. "Bring those comments forward, and prove me wrong."

      You're so sure, do it yourself.

      You're the one making the charge.

      Delete
    14. No, you dumb fuck, the point is THEY DROPPED YOUR ASS.

      It was great coverage, BUT, YOU DON'T HAVE IT ANY MORE.

      AND, YOU HAVE A PRE-EXISTING CONDITION - CARDIAC.

      If you were not eligible for Medicare you would be a screwed duck - IF IT WASN'T FOR OBAMACARE. And, evidently you're too fucking stupid to realize it.

      Delete
    15. "YOUR WIFE DIED, AND THEY DROPPED YOU."

      It was terminated a year and a half after she stopped working, just like they said it would.

      Had I immediately applied for Medicare Part B, I could have gotten a really great supplemental policy under Marriot for $34/month.

      Hopefully I still can, but must wait til July to get Medicare Part B.

      ...I hope.

      Delete
    16. "If you were not eligible for Medicare you would be a screwed duck"

      We were working before we were eligible for Medicare.

      Like most people.

      Delete
    17. I had no Cardiac issues when I was working.

      Except for bad genes.

      Delete
    18. And, Quirk, you asinine prick, this

      "A deductible is the amount of money you must pay each benefit year for medical care expenses before your insurer begins to reimburse the costs."

      IS NOT CORRECT. Now kiss my rusty, red ass.

      Delete
    19. So please tell us what IS CORRECT, all knowing one.

      Delete
    20. .

      IS NOT CORRECT

      Tell it to Ford Motor Company, you tiresome old fart.

      I copied it word for word from my retiree benefits handbook.

      Lord you are dense you screaming red ass sock monkey.

      :)

      .

      .

      Delete
    21. Well, I sold insurance, and Ford tried to build cars. They misstated it.

      Delete
    22. .

      Do you think Ford writes their own benefits manuals?

      http://personalinsure.about.com/od/health/a/aa032805a.htm

      .

      Delete
    23. Whoever wrote it, wrote it poorly.

      Delete
    24. Use your head. Did you have to satisfy the stated deductible before Ford kicked in on those Doctor visits?

      Delete
    25. .

      Whoever wrote it, wrote it poorly.

      The link I provided you reads exactly like healthcare.gov

      https://www.healthcare.gov/glossary/deductible/

      Doctor's visits?

      That's it? What was Doug's question? If you have a $20,000 bill what is your deductible? Hospital bills aren't covered.

      If you go to the doctor and he tells you have to have a procedure, or a CAT scan, or an operation, that's not covered.

      So the Doc says you've got a problem or may have a problem and you've got a $5,000 deductible. To the very people this was supposed to help, that could be a killer situation. They have to make the choice come up with the money or put off the healthcare they need.

      Thus, my initial point that people have to read what they are being offered and what it will cost them carefully. Also, that there is currently something wrong with the system if 70% of the people who should qualify for subsidies aren't qualifying for them.

      And don't give me the bull about FOX News. The article was printed in the NYT.

      For many, things remain the same. Things are great as long as you don't get sick.

      .

      Delete
    26. Are you drinking, Quirk? None of that made any sense at all.

      Delete
    27. .

      To an Obama slappy, I guess not.

      To anyone struggling with I would imagine it would.

      .

      Delete
    28. .

      Whoops, wait perhaps it was my fault. When I said that hospital bills weren't covered and when I said CT Scans and operations weren't covered what I meant to say was the insurance company wouldn't cover anything until the deductible was covered by the policy holder.

      Given the context and the extent of the conversation on this subject so far I figured most would understand that.

      However, I forgot I was talking to Rufus.

      .

      Delete
  22. On this day five years ago, Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich was arrested amid allegations of using pay-to-play tactics, including the jockeying for Barack Obama‘s vacant Senate seat.

    ReplyDelete
  23. See if this works, Quirko:

    http://cnsnews.com/mrctv-blog/matt-vespa/knockout-game-goes-terribly-right-woman-wails-her-attacker

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. .

      It took a while. I found a link about the initial video. I was some trouble but well worth it.

      Damn, she beat the hell out of the guy. Had to be dragged off him by a couple other guys.

      Wowyer.

      .

      Delete
  24. "As for effect on the nation, it should be mildly stimulative."

    :-)

    I hope the rest of you enjoy Rufie's comic relief as much as I do.

    Give him your thanks now and then.

    We're the Helpful Libertarian Legionnaires, after all.

    Think how much more Liberty we'll enjoy with affordable healthcare.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, you dumb fuck, there are EXACTLY TWO WAYS that you can buy insurance. (you have a heart condition, remember.)

      Obamacare, or if/when you're old enough, Medicare.

      dumb, hateful asshole.

      Delete
    2. "dumb, hateful asshole."

      ...only you and your "Progressive" buddies in DC.

      Gaurantors of our welfare and liberties.

      Delete
    3. Yeah, you rail againt "Socialism," and the only way in hell that you could buy insurance is through either a Socialist program, or one that you accuse of being a socialist program.

      Delete
    4. If we had invested all the money we paid in taxes for socialized this and that, we could have paid for our bills ourselves.

      And would have been charged much less than Insurance Companies are charged.

      Delete
    5. Yes, and your Group Health Policy was Subsidized by the Other Taxpayers.

      It was paid for with "Before-Tax Money," remember.

      Delete
    6. .

      If I was paying taxes, mine wasn't subsidized by them anymore than theirs was subsidized by me.

      .

      Delete
    7. .

      And if you are returning taxes to people you have taken them from is that really subsidizing them?

      A philosophical question. Where is Anonymous-Bob?

      :)

      .

      Delete
    8. What about all of us that did Not have group policies to participate in. We paid for our insurance with after-tax dollars, and paid more in income taxes so that you could pay with "before-tax" dollars.

      Delete
    9. Consider it a loafers penalty, in your case.

      Delete
    10. Supreme Court Case: Flemming vs. Nestor

      You pay taxes, you may or may no recieve benfits, later.

      There is no legal connection between the two.

      This fellow explains it, in detail, for anyone interested.
      But it is well settled law, make no mistake about that.

      http://www.supremelaw.org/authors/mcdonald/vol1-8.htm


      boberto - el auténtico anónimo

      Delete
    11. .

      Surely, Paul Krugman and the other economists, old Ben Bernanke and the boys at the FED can explain it to you. They have all used the argument. We paid for those benefits as part of our pay package. Without them we would have made much more.

      Your insurance was still part of your healthcare costs and deductible on your income taxes.

      .

      Delete
    12. No, wrong answer Q.

      What you propose IS NOT the case.

      Delete
    13. Your Total Compensation Package would have been Smaller if part of it wasn't Taxpayer-Subsidized. Period.

      Delete
    14. .

      I didn't 'propose' anything, rat.

      .

      Delete
    15. You propose, Q ...

      Your insurance was still part of your healthcare costs and deductible on your income taxes.

      You are WRONG.

      Delete
    16. .

      See the link to Turbo Tax

      https://turbotax.intuit.com/tax-tools/tax-tips/Tax-Planning-and-Checklists/Medical-Expenses-Checklist/INF12018.html

      Half way down the page of qualified medical expenses that are deductible over a certain percentage of AGI is

      'Insurance premiums for medical care coverage'

      .

      Delete
  25. "It's very important to understand that "deductibles" in Health Insurance don't work the same way as deductibles in, say, auto insurance. It's not a matter of having to satisfy the entire deductible before the benefits start to kick in. "

    ---

    OK, an example might help, right now I still have to guess how they work.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. For fuck's sake. Scroll down asshole.

      Delete
    2. You spend more effort being an asshole than it would take to be helpful.

      Delete
  26. Say I go to the hospital and the bill is 20 grand, and I had a 6,000 buck deductible.

    What would I pay?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It Deeeepends.

      Theoretically, it could be anywhere from $0.00 to $6,000.00

      I would put the over/under at $1,200.00 on the Silver Plan.

      Delete
  27. "The Bronze Plan is typically "zero" at low incomes, but it looks like you will normally pay 40% of expenses out of pocket (up to annual out of pocket limit.)"

    40 percent of 20 grand is 8 grand, far as I can tell.

    Enough to notice.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. On the other hand, The Silver Plan normally pays 96%. The Silver looks like the sweet spot for most people. I think that's where I'd start a potential customer.

      Delete
    2. And the MSM lies when they assert that these plans often cost much more than the plans many had before?

      Delete
    3. Who? Fox News? That's your "main street medium?

      Of course these policies would cost more than a Large Group (to the individual, anyway.)

      Also, if you had a piece of shit that wasn't going to pay anything, anyway, then the Obamacare policy is going to be more expensive.

      Understand this, half of bankruptcies are caused by Medical reasons, and Half of Those HAVE HEALTH INSURANCE.

      Delete
  28. Merry Christmas to one and all!

    (If I don't make it back here before then.)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks.

      Stick around and enjoy the Merriment here!

      It's a virtual lovefest.

      Delete
    2. .

      Merry Christmas.

      Looks like you and your family are ready.

      .

      Delete
    3. That was last year.
      This year is going to be a mini-Christmas.
      Less of everything except love

      Delete
    4. .

      Still sounds pretty good to me.

      .

      Delete
  29. "Of the five behaviours – exercise, not smoking, having a low bodyweight, a healthy diet and low alcohol intake – exercise was found to be the most effective at improving long-term physical and mental health."

    ---

    I wonder what four out of five would be worth?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The doctor told Doug to give up wine, women, and song. He's gonna miss song.

      Delete
  30. It kind of reminds me of my wife's family.
    They argue and fight about everything, then give each other kisses and hugs before they part.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'll politely turn down any requests here.

      Delete
    2. These assholes won't be getting any kisses from over here. I might would hug a couple right before I threw them off a very tall building.

      Delete
  31. U.S. household net worth hit a record high in the third quarter as home prices marched up and the value of stocks and mutual funds surged, a hopeful sign for the economic recovery.

    ...

    Though the surge in net worth was encouraging, economists cautioned against reading too much into the rise as it would have benefited only the portion of the population with access to equities and those who owned homes.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. And, U.S. MEDIAN Household Net Worth is still about One Fourth what it is in Australia.

      Delete
    2. That's why in the previous thread I suggested Australia get with the program and import a shitload of illiterate, unskilled, culturally deprived aliens to strengthen their power through diversity.
      "Our Strength be our Diversity, Hommie"

      Likewise the Scandinavian countries.

      Delete
    3. Not that Swedes or Aussies are superior to third generation welfare recipients here.

      Genetically, anyhow.

      Delete

    4. “Give to every other human being every right that you claim for yourself - that is my doctrine.”
      ― Thomas Paine, The Age of Reason


      boberto - el auténtico anónimo

      Delete
  32. Rush Limbaugh condemned Pope Francis and called him a Marxist. The Pope probably got it from Acts chapter 2, and chapter 4.

    Acts 2:

    [44] And all that believed were together, and had all things common;
    [45] And sold their possessions and goods, and parted them to all men, as every man had need.

    Acts 4:

    [34] Neither was there any among them that lacked: for as many as were possessors of lands or houses sold them, and brought the prices of the things that were sold,
    [35] And laid them down at the apostles' feet: and distribution was made unto every man according as he had need.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hard to be a Capitalist and a member of the Jesus sect.

      Easy to be a Christian, though.

      Two things that have not a lot in common.



      boberto - el auténtico anónimo

      Delete
  33. The Kremlin has chosen its messenger. Dmitri Kiselyov, the Russian news anchor known for his on-air tirades against Americans and homosexuals, was appointed on Monday to lead a new state-run media conglomerate, Rossiya Segodnya (Russia Today). Even among the cynical ranks of Russia’s journalists, the news came as a shock. But it was not so much the fear of censorship that bothered them – the airwaves in Russia are already tightly controlled by the state. It was rather the standard-bearer President Vladimir Putin chose, one whose venom toward the West and its values would make all but the fiercest Cold Warriors recoil.

    In April of last year, Kiselyov stated on national television that homosexuals killed in automobile accidents should have their “hearts buried in the ground or burned” to prevent their transplantation into another human body. Though rights groups pointed out that this remark constituted hate speech under Russian law, Kiselyov was not reprimanded. In fact he was promoted a few months later to become the anchor of Russia’s premier news program, Vesti Nedeli, a platform he has used to deliver weekly diatribes against Russia’s enemies, both real and imagined.

    In June, he accused the U.S. of forming an alliance with al-Qaeda and other terrorist groups in order to “spread chaos” and achieve “world domination,” while European societies, he said, are succumbing to a “cult of homosexuality” and a “betrayal of Christianity.” The only one who can beat back these threats to civilization, he argued, is President Vladimir Putin, whom Kiselyov holds up as a national savior. “From among his peers in the 20th century, Putin the politician is comparable in the scope of his efforts only with Stalin,” the anchor said last year. He meant this as a compliment.

    Read more: Putin Disbands RIA Novosti, Appoints Gay-Basher to Top Media Post | TIME.com http://world.time.com/2013/12/09/kremlin-appoints-gay-bashing-anchor-to-lead-its-media-empire/#ixzz2n204adxX


    boberto - el auténtico anónimo

    ReplyDelete
  34. The WikiLeaks staffer and Snowden collaborator Sarah Harrison has criticised Pierre Omidyar, the eBay founder who is setting up a new journalism venture with Glenn Greenwald, Laura Poitras and Jeremy Scahill, for his involvement in the 2010 financial blockade against WikiLeaks.

    In her first interview since leaving Moscow for Berlin last month, Harrison told German news weekly Stern: "How can you take something seriously when the person behind this platform went along with the financial boycott against WikiLeaks?"

    Harrison was referring to the decision in December 2010 by PayPal, which is owned by eBay, to suspend WikiLeaks' donation account and freeze its assets after pressure from the US government. The company's boycott, combined with similar action taken by Visa and Mastercard, left WikiLeaks facing a funding crisis.

    "His excuse is probably that there is nothing he could have done at the time," Harrison continued. "Well, he is on the board of directors. He can't shake off responsibility that easily. He didn't even comment on it. He could have said something like: 'we were forced to do this, but I am against it'."

    Harrison joined WikiLeaks from the Bureau of Investigative Journalism, and worked with the organisation on the Afghan war logs and leaked cables projects. She now works on the WikiLeaks legal defence team, although she has no legal qualifications, and was catapulted to fame when she accompanied Edward Snowden, the NSA whistleblower, on his flight from Hong Kong to Russia in June 2013.

    Referring to Omidyar's plans to set up a new media organisation, in which the former Guardian writer Greenwald – who wrote a number of stories from the Snowden revelations – will play a central part, Harrison said: "If you set up a new media organisation which claims to do everything for press freedom, but you are part of a blockade against another media organisation, then that's hard for us to take it seriously. But I hope that they stick to their promises".


    boberto - el auténtico anónimo

    ReplyDelete
  35. http://www.forbes.com/sites/joannmuller/2013/12/09/taxpayers-dont-have-government-motors-to-kick-around-any-more/


    Despite the $11 billion loss on the GM bailout, the Treasury Department was quick to point out that it has recovered a total of $432.7 billion on all investments under the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP) – including the sale of its shares in AIG – compared to $421.8 billion disbursed. Treasury said it will continue to wind down the remaining investments”in a manner that balances maximizing the taxpayer’s return on investments with the speed of our exit.”

    A study released Monday by the Center for Automotive Research concluded that the government bailout of GM spared 1.2 million jobs in 2009 and preserved $39.4 billion in personal and social insurance tax collections in 2009 and 2010. “Any complete cost-benefit assessment of the federal assistance to GM in its restructuring must consider the total net returns to the public investment…” researchers Sean McAlinden and Debra Maranger Menk wrote in “The Effect on the U.S. Economy of the Successful Restructuring of General Motors.”

    “If the U.S. government had refused to assist (GM and Chrysler)… in a financial crisis of unprecedented proportions, then the whole U.S. economy was operating without a safety net, with the exception, of course, of the banking system,” McAlinden and Maranger Menk conclude. The center independently funded the new study as a follow up to a November 2008 analysis.

    “The bottom line is that a failed GM would have left a lot of collateral damage,” said Karl Brauer, senior analyst at Kelley Blue Book. “Instead, GM is profitable, it’s making the best products in its 100-plus-year history, and it’s growing sales in the U.S. and globally. In looking at the recent history of government intervention, this one rates pretty well.”


    boberto - el auténtico anónimo

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Us taxpayers owed that money to the autoworkers unionistas.
      Rufus told us so.
      Obama is our savior.

      Delete
    2. Forbes.com is telling us, Doug.
      Rufus has nothing to do with it.

      http://www.forbes.com/sites/joannmuller/2013/12/09/taxpayers-dont-have-government-motors-to-kick-around-any-more/


      boberto - el auténtico anónimo

      Delete

  36. Is There a Right to Social Security?

    By Michael D. Tanner
    November 25, 1998

    You worked hard your whole life and paid thousands of dollars in Social Security taxes. Now it’s time to retire. You’re legally entitled to Social Security benefits, right? Wrong. There is no legal right to Social Security, and that is one of the considerations that may decide the coming debate over Social Security reform.

    Many people believe that Social Security is an “earned right.” That is, they think that because they have paid Social Security taxes, they are entitled to receive Social Security benefits. The government encourages that belief by referring to Social Security taxes as “contributions,” as in the Federal Insurance Contribution Act. However, in the 1960 case of Fleming v. Nestor, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that workers have no legally binding contractual rights to their Social Security benefits, and that those benefits can be cut or even eliminated at any time.

    http://www.cato.org/publications/commentary/is-there-right-social-security

    ReplyDelete
  37. "New York Times: ObamaCare's More Expensive than Obama Claims

    www.breitbart.com/Big.../New-York_times-obamacare-not-a-good-deal
    10 hours ago - Like the rest of the mainstream media, The New York Times is right ... The latest nasty ObamaCare surprise is outrageously high deductibles."

    ---

    Damned Conservative Rag.

    Just ask Rufus

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. According to Breitbart.

      Goddamned boy, you're a hoot. :)

      Delete
    2. Yeah, I'm sure you read the Times Article.

      Delete
    3. You lie.
      Again.

      On Health Exchanges, Premiums May Be Low, but Other Costs Can Be High

      By ROBERT PEAR


      WASHINGTON — For months, the Obama administration has heralded the low premiums of medical insurance policies on sale in the insurance exchanges created by the new health law. But as consumers dig into the details, they are finding that the deductibles and other out-of-pocket costs are often much higher than what is typical in employer-sponsored health plans.

      Until now, it was almost impossible for people using the federal health care website to see the deductible amounts, which consumers pay before coverage kicks in. But federal officials finally relented last week and added a “window shopping” feature that displays data on deductibles.

      For policies offered in the federal exchange, as in many states, the annual deductible often tops $5,000 for an individual and $10,000 for a couple.

      Insurers devised the new policies on the assumption that consumers would pick a plan based mainly on price, as reflected in the premium. But insurance plans with lower premiums generally have higher deductibles.

      In El Paso, Tex., for example, for a husband and wife both age 35, one of the cheapest plans on the federal exchange, offered by Blue Cross and Blue Shield, has a premium less than $300 a month, but the annual deductible is more than $12,000. For a 45-year-old couple seeking insurance on the federal exchange in Saginaw, Mich., a policy with a premium of $515 a month has a deductible of $10,000.

      In Santa Cruz, Calif., where the exchange is run by the state, Robert Aaron, a self-employed 56-year-old engineer, said he was looking for a low-cost plan. The best one he could find had a premium of $488 a month. But the annual deductible was $5,000, and that, he said, “sounds really high.”

      By contrast, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation, the average deductible in employer-sponsored health plans is $1,135

      ---

      If you liked your plan, tough shit.

      Delete
    4. .

      Come on, Doug.

      How many times must he tell you, that just doesn't make any sense.

      After all, he is a professional.

      .

      Delete
    5. "the deductibles and other out-of-pocket costs are often much higher than what is typical in employer-sponsored health plans."

      Then, you would keep your Employer-Sponsored Plan, wouldn't you.

      Delete
    6. Millions did, before Obama made it illegal.

      Delete
    7. "Goddamned boy, you're a hoot. :)"

      Must be nice to be able to gloat when you're wrong.

      "boy"
      ...old habits die hard.

      Delete
    8. "In El Paso, Tex., for example, for a husband and wife both age 35, one of the cheapest plans on the federal exchange, offered by Blue Cross and Blue Shield, has a premium less than $300 a month, but the annual deductible is more than $12,000. For a 45-year-old couple seeking insurance on the federal exchange in Saginaw, Mich., a policy with a premium of $515 a month has a deductible of $10,000."

      First, a less than $300.00 premium for a 35 yr old couple is Very Low. The $12,000.00 is, actually, $6,000.00 per person.

      $515.00/mo for a 45 yr old couple is ridiculously cheap. And, as for the $10,000.00? Ditto to the paragraph above.

      And, remember what I told you about how the deductible is actually applied.

      You're just reading breathless bullshit by people that either have an agenda, or don't have the foggiest how health insurance works (like someone that has had a group policy supplied to them their whole lives. Horsehocky.

      Delete
    9. .

      There should be very little issue with larger company's 'employer-sponsored plans' but those aren't the ones Obamacare was designed to take care of.

      The plan was designed to help the lower income people who have trouble paying for healthcare. At this point, we really don't have a feel for what will happen with small employers who have employee health plans. Will higher prices on the new plans cause them modify what they offer (in terms of co-pays, coinsurance, deductibles) or adjust work rolls to drop the insurance altogether, or simply move more people to part time?
      We don't know.

      We won't have a clue on the overall effect of the ACA for at least a year.

      .

      Delete
    10. .

      For your own good, please forget how Rufus said deductibles are actually applied.

      :)

      .

      Delete
    11. "And, remember what I told you about how the deductible is actually applied."

      Actually, you didn't.

      DougMon Dec 09, 07:43:00 PM EST
      Say I go to the hospital and the bill is 20 grand, and I had a 6,000 buck deductible.

      What would I pay?

      ReplyDelete
      Replies

      Rufus IIMon Dec 09, 07:51:00 PM EST
      It Deeeepends.

      Theoretically, it could be anywhere from $0.00 to $6,000.00

      I would put the over/under at $1,200.00 on the Silver Plan.

      Delete
    12. "those aren't the ones Obamacare was designed to take care of."

      He just said everyone could keep them if they liked them.
      Likewise, their doctors.

      For 3 years leading up to the election.

      Delete
  38. Dec 3 (Reuters) - The U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday unanimously ruled that Texas billionaire Billy Joe "Red" McCombs must pay steep penalties to the Internal Revenue Service related to more than $45 million he tried to shield from taxes.

    The decision could lead to the payment of hundreds of millions of dollars in penalties and interest that the government has alleged other taxpayers owe in disputes similar to the McCombs case.

    McCombs, former owner of the Minnesota Vikings football team, and his business partner Gary Woods in 1999 set up a partnership to run a tax shelter known as a "current options bring reward alternatives," or COBRA. It was designed to create financial losses to offset windfall gains McCombs was expecting.

    The tax shelter itself had already been ruled a sham by lower courts. But McCombs and Woods argued that a 40 percent IRS penalty should not apply.

    In an opinion written by Justice Antonin Scalia, the high court said the Texans' arguments were "unpersuasive."

    "At the end of the day, Woods' and McCombs' $3.2 million investment generated tax losses that, if treated as valid, could have shielded more than $45 million of income from taxation," Scalia wrote.

    "The penalty is applicable to tax underpayments resulting from the partners' participation in the COBRA tax shelter," Scalia wrote.

    Woods and McCombs did not immediately respond to requests for comment on Tuesday.

    Greg Garre, the lawyer who represented the Texans before the high court in October, declined to comment on the decision. An IRS spokesman also declined to comment.

    It was unclear exactly how much money McCombs and Woods owed the IRS because interest has accrued on the penalties, tax lawyers said on Tuesday.

    The ruling dealt a blow to other taxpayers fighting the IRS in court or in audits over 40 percent penalties, said Nathan Clukey, a former Justice Department attorney.

    "It's game over," said Clukey, now with the law firm King & Spalding LLP.
    "It's not like the court minced words here. They were fairly explicit.

    It's an impressive win for the government."



    boberto - el auténtico anónimo

    ReplyDelete
  39. .

    Some people (and countries) like Detroit's chances.

    Some guy's like Mike Ilich and the Ford's have been investing in Detroit for years. New billionaires are also jumping in. Dan Gilbert has bee buying up properties for the last few years. Warren Buffet and Lloyd Blankfein just announced a partnership to invest in Detroit small business. Most of the resources have been invested in the central core and are spreading outward at a rapid pace. A lot of young people are moving into the corridor between the Ren Cen and the New Center area and Wayne State Univ.

    Now, it appears the Chinese are looking for bargains.

    Who says the Chinese are waiting? Dongdu International Group of Shanghai bought, sight unseen, two downtown icons, the David Stott building for $4.2 million and the Detroit Free Press building for $9.4 million, both at auction this September.

    Moreover, Chinese purchasers are making bulk purchases of “inexpensive properties”—those selling for $25,000 or less—in the rings surrounding the city center. “They’re banking on the downtown resurgence spiraling out into those rings,” explains Kelly Sweeney of Coldwell Banker Weir Manuel. Mainland parties often buy at tax and foreclosure sales, hold their property, and patiently wait for appreciation.

    The Chinese certainly have made an impact on the locals in Detroit. “I have people calling and saying, ‘I’m serious—I wanna buy 100, 200 properties,’ ” said Caroline Chen, a real estate broker in nearby Troy, Michigan, to Quartz.com. “They say ‘We don’t need to see them. Just pick the good ones.’ ” Chen reports that one of her colleagues sold 30 properties to a Chinese investor.

    The Chinese are coming, but what are they doing? Dongdu International will make a big contribution to downtown by redeveloping the Detroit Free Press building, turning it into a retail and residential complex, but that ambitious plan appears to be the exception. China’s rich are investing in the Motor City like they invest in their own country, where they buy multiple units at a time. In China, like here, they often keep their acquisitions vacant, treating new properties like stores of value.

    The Chinese buy-and-hold tactics in Detroit suggest patience, but that’s not the whole story. The bigger story is that the parking of wealth offshore indicates capital flight. The Chinese have only 13% of their wealth outside China, according to Oliver Williams of WealthInsight, while the global average is 20% to 30%, so some of transfers of wealth abroad are normal for a developing society.


    http://www.forbes.com/sites/gordonchang/2013/12/08/chinas-newest-city-we-call-it-detroit/

    .

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. So the taxpayer is out from under the investment in Gummint Motors. How many billions dod we lose?

      Delete
    2. Rufus can't count that high.

      Delete
    3. Bankruptcy's never worked before.

      Why start now when the Unionistas get to keep their unfair share this way, courtesy of the taxpayers.

      Delete
    4. On that particular trade, Ms T, only $11 billion.

      On the whole Bush Recession bailout package, the Federals are up $11 billion.
      So the whole deal was a 'wash', so far.

      Not a dime invested that was no returned, on the macro level.
      On a micro level, the Federals made $11 billion in the Financial Industry and lost $11 billion in manufacturing.

      Which is, indeed, is the story of modern America.

      Delete
    5. the Treasury Department was quick to point out that it has recovered a total of $432.7 billion on all investments under the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP) – including the sale of its shares in AIG – compared to $421.8 billion disbursed. Treasury said it will continue to wind down the remaining investments”in a manner that balances maximizing the taxpayer’s return on investments with the speed of our exit.”

      http://www.forbes.com/sites/joannmuller/2013/12/09/taxpayers-dont-have-government-motors-to-kick-around-any-more/

      Whether bankruptcy would have 'worked' or not is really irrelevant, Doug.

      As old man Rumsfeld would say ...
      "There are too many unknowables in that hypothetical"

      Delete
    6. .

      Sorry, Doug.

      (And we were getting along so well, too.)

      I've got to go along with the rat and Rufus on the GM deal. To my mind it had to be done due to the way the industry is constructed. If GM went into bankruptcy they would have likely taken some major suppliers with them and many more smaller one. Most of the major suppliers were in serious trouble (Johnson Controls,Lear, Visteon, PPG, Delphi, etc) with some entering or coming out of bankruptcy themselves. Without the business from the auto makers and in some cases loans, credit, or other concessions, more than did would have gone under.

      The problem is that most of the suppliers supply to all the auto companies and if a few big ones go down it could take quite awhile to resource and move tools if you could find a company with the right capabilites. it could have crippled the industry. That's why companies like Ford and Toyota favored GM and Chrysler being bailed out even though in some ways it provide the bailed out companies competitive advantages.

      But as rat said, all we can do is speculate.

      However, one thing is certain, if GM and Chrysler went under, the worker's pension obligations would have been dumped on the government through the PBGC. I suspect that would have cost a lot more than we have lost in the bailout.

      .

      Delete
    7. .

      Why start now when the Unionistas get to keep their unfair share this way, courtesy of the taxpayers.

      See my point above regarding the PBGC. It's easy to say the companies pay into the PBGC so it's like an insurance policy. But anyway you look at it, the taxpayer was going to end up paying, either through the bailout or through the PBGC. At least with the bailout the union kept working and paying in taxes.

      [Likewise, I have little sympathy for the bondholders. In most cases, they were the same dick banks that caused all the problems and took auto sales from 16 million down to 8-9 million overnight. The stockholders were going to take it on the chin whichever way it worked out.]

      .

      Delete
  40. Deuce,
    It looks like you “missed” taking this down. Having said you are a “vile little man”, I did not expect you to demonstrate my observation so blatantly.

    Back in the good old days in the Fatherland, professors and teachers were fired, books and papers were banned and/or burned, music shelved, cemeteries desecrated, memorials defaced, and monuments toppled. The Party media organs’ every message contained something derogatory and false.

    None of that changed the outcome, your side lost. You will continue to lose.

    For all your Strum und Drang, your own countrymen disagree with you overwhelming and laugh at your piddling scribblings. Grass will grow through your jaw before America turns on its Jews, although it will before the end of the century; but you will never see the day.

    At this writing 64% of Americans support Israel, while only 12% support the Palestinians. Every terror attack only serves to strengthen that number. When Israel goes to war, the number will go through the roof, as usual. You can thank Evangelical Christians for your sorrow. These same Evangelicals will destroy the political career of any politician (other than Michigan – Palestine West) who causes Israel grief. To add further to your angst, Mr. Netanyahu is the darling of the demographic, which is why he feels at ease coming to the US and spanking Barak.

    Your discomfiture, evidenced by your daily obsessive, delusional paeans eagerly anticipating, puppy like, the unmasking of the world’s greatest evil is laughable. You are the Generalissimo of an army of three sycophants. All these years and the most you can muster on a good day is a party of three – what a pathetic waste of time.

    By steadfastly holding to a gigantic conspiracy theory concerning the USS Liberty, you betray your own country to feed your paranoiac shibboleths and those of your pet viper (sorry, Quirk, you aren’t even close).

    QuirkSun Dec 08, 02:17:00 PM EST
    .Speaking of assholes and the appropriateness of its application.
    nig

    Yid

    Re: "silly-assed rants" Oh, this is such a pleasure. Do you mean these kinds of rants?

    phony-balony, drug-addicted bitch.
    Pissant
    phony piece of shit.
    You are one crazy dick.
    bitch.
    lying maggot
    you are a Fraud
    Junkie. Another Rush Limbaugh.
    asshole
    asshole, allen
    deranged motherfucker
    phony motherfucker
    asinine
    asshole
    idiot phony motherfucker
    sad-sack maggot
    goofy, drugged-up ass
    full of shit as the druggie.
    asshole
    pop a pill, prick
    phony motherfucker
    dipshit
    asshole
    Motherfucker!!!
    Dumbfuck
    phony sonofabitch
    asshole
    unpleasant asshole
    nuttier'n hell
    work the VA for drugs (which he could, of course, sell to allen.)
    lying piece of shit,

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The Jews in Jerusalem ...The Nazis in Germany…the Japanese in Shanghai…Treating people as less than human because of the shape of their faces or the sound of their names. Sometimes it feels like the whole damn world is unraveling.

      boberto - el auténtico anónimo

      Delete
    2. .

      Gee, it appears that Allen is upset (again). However, what is also obvious is that he lacks the skill to do a simple cut and paste, either that, or he is merely kinda sneaky.

      In his post above, below the point where he puts up QuirkSun Dec 08, 02:17:00 PM EST, he lists a number of derogatory remarks, leaving the impression that they originated with Quirk. In fact, Allen merely cut out relevant portions of my post and all of the context within which it was written.

      Allen and I were having an disagreement about the appropriateness of the word 'asshole', a word defined as

      2. usually vulgar : a stupid, incompetent, or detestable person [Merriam-Webster Dictionary]

      My post which Allen referenced above merely contained a few lines of commentary on Allen's post of Dec. 6, a reference Allen conveniently left out. Allen's post follows.

      1. allenFri Dec 06, 03:51:00 PM EST

      The wall of fame has grown with two additional invectives from our own Terresita. "From the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks":

      nig

      Yid

      Re: "silly-assed rants" Oh, this is such a pleasure. Do you mean these kinds of rants?

      phony-balony, drug-addicted bitch.
      Pissant
      phony piece of shit.
      You are one crazy dick.
      bitch.
      lying maggot
      you are a Fraud
      Junkie. Another Rush Limbaugh.
      asshole
      asshole, allen
      deranged motherfucker
      phony motherfucker
      asinine
      asshole
      idiot phony motherfucker
      sad-sack maggot
      goofy, drugged-up ass
      full of shit as the druggie.
      asshole
      pop a pill, prick
      phony motherfucker
      dipshit
      asshole
      Motherfucker!!!
      Dumbfuck
      phony sonofabitch
      asshole
      unpleasant asshole
      nuttier'n hell
      work the VA for drugs (which he could, of course, sell to allen.)
      lying piece of shit,


      .



      Delete
    3. .

      Bad form, Allen.

      Real bad form, Allen

      And really pretty stupid too if you really didn't think you would be called on it.

      .

      Delete
    4. He gets confused about things other than the minute details of being a marine.

      Delete
    5. ...of course, he did have an embarrassing lapse trying to answer questioned posed to him by a real marine.

      Delete
    6. This comment has been removed by the author.

      Delete
    7. .

      However, to a more relevant point.

      Grass will grow through your jaw before America turns on its Jews, although it will before the end of the century; but you will never see the day.

      Haven't a clue as to what the whole sentence implies; however, one phrase seems obvious, 'turn on its Jews'.

      There are three stooges here who accuse this blog of being anti-Semitic. One is a self-proclaimed Israeli-firster (No divided loyalty!), the other is an AIPAC member who has also declared himself a member of the ADL, and the third is a faux farmer who claims we may have to use nukes in order to bring about peace in the ME.

      To this trio, arguing against the policies of the current Israeli government because you believe they are antithetical to American interests is anti-Semitic. But then, heck, to these three not liking chicken soup would raise suspicions you were anti-Semitic.

      But back to the question at hand. Why would America turn on it's Jews? Why would we (this blog) want America to turn on it's Jews? They are Americans. And if push came to shove, I expect most would put the interest of America first, even before those of Israel.

      However, it would be interesting to witness what qualms of conscience (if any) these three would go through if presented with that survey BN was sending out that asked where their loyalties would lie in the event of an American-Israel crisis.

      .

      Delete
  41. That Big Bopper Woman Beater suffered a negative health outcome.

    ReplyDelete
  42. Just one more thing - from the Kaiser faq page

    That depends on your income and where you live. To give a general idea, a typical Silver plan might have an annual deductible of $2,000 to $3,000 and an annual out of pocket limit on all cost sharing of $6,350. But if your income is between 100% and 150% of the federal poverty level, the cost sharing reductions will modify a Silver plan so that the annual deductible might be closer to $0 and the annual out of pocket limit on all cost sharing would be no more than $2,250.

    If your income is between 150% and 200% of the federal poverty level, the cost sharing reductions will modify the Silver plan so that the annual deductible might be around $500 and the annual out-of-pocket limit would be no more than $2,250.

    If your income is between 200% and 250% of the federal poverty level, the cost sharing reductions will be more modest. At this income level, your annual out-of-pocket limit will be reduced to no more than $5,200.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. .

      Not fair.

      Doug already left with his half of the pot.

      .

      Delete
    2. And the lying bastard said he was done!

      He don't even believe himself!

      Delete
    3. "an annual out of pocket limit on all cost sharing of $6,350"

      OK, I give:

      WTF is "all cost sharing" Mr. Socialist Apparatchik?

      Delete
  43. Allen, I prefer when you pretend to be a marine over when you try to be intelligent.

    ReplyDelete
  44. Jesus gave up his normal job, formed a group, lived off the wealth of the women who had some to live off of, gave the money bag to Judas to carry and would have been a lousy Mayor.

    So economically speaking only, is he a failed capitalist, a socialist, a communist, hippie, an anarchist, a welfare cheat and leech, what?

    ;)

    Everyone seems to be throwing around the usual invective today.

    ReplyDelete
  45. I'm for the Ukrainian farmers.

    ReplyDelete
  46. There ;is going to be good skiing out this way this year.

    ReplyDelete
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    ReplyDelete
  48. How come Ford Motor Company took zero taxpayer dollars, and did just fine?

    Should they have been robbed like the Dick Bondholders to?

    ...just to even the scores.

    Obamastyle.

    GD Commie Dictator.

    ReplyDelete
  49. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete