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11.16 Scotland was first Industrialized Country to Run wholly on Wind in October

11.16 How pesticide bans can prevent tens of thousands of suicides a year [how many thousands more die early from eating pesticide-laced food?]

11.15  The long read:  The plastic backlash: what's behind our sudden rage – and will it make a difference? [the world wants to throw-up...]

11.15 Claws out: crab fishermen sue 30 oil firms over climate change [workers are waking-up...]

11.15 Trump administration to cut air pollution from heavy-duty trucks

11.14 Backed by Ocasio-Cortez, Youth Climate Activists Arrested in Pelosi's Office Demanding Democrats Embrace 'Green New Deal'

11.13 What would a smog-free city look like?

11.13 Global report highlights Australia’s renewables potential amid mixed signals for coal

11.13 Interior department whistleblower: Ryan Zinke hollowed out the agency

11.12  This Land is Your Land:  The Zinke effect: how the US interior department became a tool of industry [behaving ignorantly again...]

11.12 Planned Parenthood's new president warns of 'state of emergency' for women's health

11.11 Trump responds to worst fires in California’s history by threatening to withhold federal aid [behaving ignorantly again...]

11.11 Interior department sued for ‘secretive process’ in at-risk species assessment [behaving ignorantly again...]

11.11 Keystone XL pipeline: judge rules government 'jumped the gun' and orders halt [behaving ignorantly again...]

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11.17 As Energy for Medicare for All Explodes, Steny Hoyer's Plan Includes Waiting for Trump to Help Make Obamacare Better [Another who is unfit to be Democrat leader]

11.17 'A Staggeringly Bad Idea': Outrage as Pelosi Pushes Tax Rule That Would 'Kneecap the Progressive Agenda' [Unfit to be Democrat leader]

11.17 Trump Is Starting to Panic

11.16 As 'Green New Deal' Demand Grows, Democrats Have Choice: Confront and Defeat Fossil Fuel Industry or Take Credit for 'Doomed' Planet [Two choices: Save life-on-Earth or help Republicans let it die?]

11.16 Trump’s latest interview shows a president who’s in way over his head

11.16 Why the political fight in Georgia is far from over

11.16 Florida judge sides with Democrats, giving thousands a second chance to fix their ballots

11.15 Democrats Won Big. Can They Go Bold, Too? [it's about suppressing the influence and leadership by Republican-like Democrats who counsel 'íncremental' (no) change, such as Nancy Pelosi, Steny Hoyer, Hillary Clinton, Chuck Shumer and Joe Biden]

11.15 Pentagon Officials Forced to Make Fewer Public Appearances to Avoid Provoking Trump [...by revealing Trump's huuuge ignorance]

11.15 REPUBLICANS USED A BILL ABOUT WOLVES TO AVOID A VOTE ON YEMEN WAR [if there are 'defense industry' profits to be made—including congress-critter insider-trading—and political 'donations' to be had, we mustn't stop killing innocent civilians!]

11.15 Big Oil v the planet is the fight of our lives. Democrats must choose a side

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11.14 The Guardian view on Yemen’s misery: the west is complicit [WAR CRIMES]

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11.16 Amazon’s HQ2 Will Get a Tax Break Designed to Help the Poor [a Republican program that directly helps participating wealthy companies—but only helps workers if and when 'trickle-down' occurs.]

11.16 Trump doesn’t want to punish Saudi Arabia over Khashoggi. His new sanctions prove it. [George W. Bush made a similar immoral decision for the same oily reasons after 9-11, protecting Saudi defense contracts while facilitating the slaughter of poorer Arab "terrorists" in the region.]

11.15 The Earth is in a death spiral. It will take radical action to save us [fossil fuel burning, un-recyclable plastic production/use and methane gas release must cease ASAP.]

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11.17 Saudi crown prince's 'fit' delays UN resolution on war in Yemen

11.17 Thousands gather to block London bridges in climate rebellion [We're losing WWIII because the enemy is invisible while we're like frogs slowly cooking. We aren't informed enough to be alarmed, but must get organized and motivated to fight back. We need a War Plan to ruthlessly pursue the fight of our lives!]

11.17 Policies of China, Russia and Canada threaten 5C climate change, study finds [Climate catastrophe is increasingly likely without worldwide organization, funding and commitment to winning THE WAR AGAINST GLOBAL WARMING.]

11.17 CIA finds Saudi crown prince ordered Jamal Khashoggi killing – report

11.15 Cuba to pull doctors out of Brazil after President-elect Bolsonaro comments [terms must be negotiated for fairness to Cuba's health professionals without disruption of healthcare for Brazil's poor]

11.14 'Appalling' Khashoggi audio shocked Saudi intelligence – Erdogan [Exposing a psychopath?]

11.14 Israel and Hamas launch hundreds of attacks in Gaza clash

11.14 Mueller seeking more details on Nigel Farage, key Russia inquiry target says

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  False Health-Scare Ad on CNN
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IMMORAL CAPITALISM AT ITS WORST:

False Health-Scare Ad on CNN

by Robert Parry
Originally published 25 June 2009

A right-wing group called Conservatives for Patients’ Rights is airing a political attack ad against the idea of a public option for health insurance by turning upside down an analysis showing that 119 million Americans would jump from their private health insurer to a government plan if one existed.

According to that analysis, 119 million Americans – roughly two-thirds of those now on private plans – would defect to a public option if they had a choice. But the right-wing group, in airing its ad on CNN, presents that number as a case of denying those Americans the choice of staying on their private plans.

“Experts say a government plan could result in 119 million Americans coming off their existing coverage,” a woman’s voice intones over the image of a Wall Street Journal article. “They’d end up on a government-run plan.”

However, those 119 million Americas would be “coming off their existing coverage,” according to the analysis, because they would choose a public health option over their existing private plan. In other words, what the CPR group wants to do is to deny those 119 million Americans the choice they want.

In opening the ad, CPR leader Rick Scott explicitly flips the issue of “choice,” maintaining that a public option “could mean taking away your choice.”

Scott is a multimillionaire who built Columbia/HCA into the largest U.S. health-care company before being removed by the board of directors in 1997 after a fraud investigation that led to a guilty plea for the company on overbilling state and federal health plans and to a record $1.7 billion in fines.

Coordinating Scott’s anti-public-option attack ads is the CRC Public Relations firm that devised the “Swift boat” attacks on Sen. John Kerry’s war record during Campaign 2004. [Washington Post, May 11, 2009]

In one of the strange twists of the current health-care debate, the industry’s defenders have repeatedly cited the potential 119 million American defectors to a public option as an argument for denying them that choice. The argument is that so many Americans would vote with their pocketbooks against the private insurers and in favor of a government-run plan that the private industry would collapse.

“As many as 119 million Americans would shift from private coverage to the government plan,” one of the industry’s chief protectors, Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, wrote in a column for Politico.com, arguing that the result would be cataclysmic for the industry.

Though some analysts question the accuracy of the 119 million estimate, its use by industry defenders represents a remarkable admission of failure by private health insurers to meet the needs of their customers.

That failure was underscored again on Wednesday by the findings of a congressional investigation that two-thirds of the industry used a faulty database that overcharged patients for seeing out-of-network doctors. The use of the flawed database cost private insurance subscribers billions of dollars that they should not otherwise have paid, the report said.

Given the many complaints that Americans have expressed over the years about denials, limits and cost of health insurance, it probably shouldn’t be a surprise that millions of Americans would trust a government-run insurance plan over a private one.

But the main point of U.S. public opinion has been that health care reform should offer a choice for Americans to pick one or the other.  According to a New York Times/CBS poll, 72 percent of the American people favor “offering everyone a government administered health insurance plan like Medicare that would compete with private health insurance plans.”

However, the attack ad appearing on CNN has turned the choice issue inside out, with the goal of leaving the American people with only the choice of signing up with a private insurer or going without insurance.


Robert ParryRobert Parry broke many of the Iran-Contra stories in the 1980s for the Associated Press and Newsweek. His latest book, Neck Deep: The Disastrous Presidency of George W. Bush, was written with two of his sons, Sam and Nat, and can be ordered at neckdeepbook.com. His two previous books, Secrecy & Privilege: The Rise of the Bush Dynasty from Watergate to Iraq and Lost History: Contras, Cocaine, the Press & 'Project Truth' are also available there. Or go to Amazon.com.

This article is republished in the Baltimore Chronicle with permission of the author.



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This story was published on June 26, 2009.

 

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