Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Where are the Republicans: Part 1


Below is a screen shot of the pitiful Web Page of the Ohio Republican Party.

You can visit it personally at http://www.ohiogop.org/.

When you go there, take a look at the missing image in the bottom center of the page, and ask yourself if a this page Web page really mattered to the Republican Party, how quickly would it be fixed.

Let us say, for example, there was an image missing from the home page of . . . the Washington Post, Google, or the Microsoft Web page. It would probably be fixed in about ten minutes. In the E-commerce sites I have worked on, a problem like that would be fixed in a day or less.

Would Sears, Pennys, or Best Buy Web let an error go uncorrected on Thanksgiving weekend?

Nope! Someone would get called away from their meal to fix it, so it wouldn't impact the black Friday sales.

But the Ohio Republican Web page? Well, it could just sit there screaming "we're incompetent and we don't care about mistakes on our Web page" for a long time.

Why?

The Ohio Republican Party doesn't feel the page is mission critical.

I mean, it's obvious that nobody from the Ohio State Republican Party is looking at the page and worrying about whether it is changing minds or drawing in new conservative voters.

I guess I would like to know if the RNC (Republican National Committee) thinks they can win with this level of effort?

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Public Health Care Landmines -- Part I

The quality provisions of the Senate Health Care Bill are a roadmap to the future destruction of the American Health Care System.

Section 2717 of the Senate Bill is titled "Ensuring the Quality of Care", but there is nothing in that section that actually concerns itself with ensuring quality of care.

SEC. 2717. ENSURING THE QUALITY OF CARE.

(a) QUALITY REPORTING.—

(1) IN GENERAL.—Not later than 2 years after the date of enactment of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, the Secretary, in consultation with experts in health care quality and stake holders, shall develop reporting requirements for use by a group health plan, and a health insurance issuer offering group or individual health insurance coverage, with respect to plan or coverage benefits and health care provider reimbursement structures that—

Do the Republicans want to Win?

What's going on with the Republicans?

Here's an awesome video about the problems with our government. It would be nice to say that the Republicans made it, but they didn't.


Sunday, November 22, 2009

Rewarding Diane Feinstein's Failure

This morning on Meet the Press, Senator Diane Feinstein complained about unemployment in California.

"I've got two and a half million people unemployed," said Feinstein, "that's bigger than the population of twelve states."

Well, thanks to the government’s misuse of the Federal Endangered Species Act and two
subsequent biological opinions, the vast majority of water that normally flows to California’s West-Side Central Valley farmers has been shut off DURING THE GROWING SEASON in order to protect a 2” baitfish called the Delta Smelt*, and a handful of other marine species.

This means loss of farm jobs and loss of farm revenue in California. What has Senator Feinstien done to protect the Central Valley Farmers?

Starting in 2009 and continuing on thereafter - through the enactment of the San Joaquin River Settlement - water for struggling farms on the East-Side of the Valley will be diverted to restore a long lost salmon run (one that experts say will not reestablish).

This means loss of farm jobs and loss of farm revenue in California. What has Senator Feinstien done to protect the Central Valley Farmers?

THE RESULT is a growing Government created Dust Bowl, 40+% unemployment for surrounding communities, bankruptcy for countless farmers and their families, higher food prices nationally, a greater dependence on foreign produce, and a dangerous precedent for land owners NATIONWIDE.

This means loss of farm jobs and loss of farm revenue in California. What has Senator Feinstien done to protect the Central Valley Farmers?

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Mary Landrieu Should Have Worn Red

30 pieces of silver or $100 million. What's the difference? When you are for sale, you are for sale.

For the relatively small price of $100 million today, Mary Landrieu sold her health care vote to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid.

It reminded me of a story about author George Bernard Shaw at a party:

One evening Shaw was at a party where he met an attractive young debutant who clearly had a very high opinion of herself.

Looking the young lady directly in the eyes, Shaw asked, "Will you sleep with me if I give you a million pouinds?"

The young lady flushed, surprised, but answered immediately, "Yes, Mr. Shaw, I would."

Shaw gets himself another drink, and again looks the woman directly in the eyes.

"Would you sleep with me for five pounds," he asked.

"Of course not," she answered. "What sort of lady do you think I am?"

"Madam," replied Shaw, "we have already decided what sort of lady you are. We're simply hagging over price."

Mary Landrieu put her political principles up for sale today. She should have worn red.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Japanese Company Introduces Congressional Intern Robot

HITYONDA INTRODUCES FULL FEATURED CONGRESSIONAL INTERN ROBOT
Model Features Rechargeable Nasal Battery and Bong Accessory

Washington D.C., Nov. 15, 2009 (OMG Booth #1209) – Hityonda, a Japanese company, today announced a tatooed high nasal capacity congressional intern robot, adding more options for those seeking a true Generation Y Congressional Constituent experience.

The new COCN-420 congressional intern functions identically to older flesh and blood units feature for feature. It automatically refuels itself with cocaine, cannabis, or any other available pharmaceutical, comes with an iPod and Blackberry which it continually adjusts while pretending to listen to calls from constituents, and repeating in a stuporific monotone, "Good idea (dhuuuude!), I'll send that along to the Congressman."

COCN-420 is also programmed to respond to questions from Congressional constituents about Cap and Trade and Health Care; and it is fully capable of saying "I don't know" (IDK™)., and "I'm not sure" (INS™), and "no, I didn;t know they were voting on that today".

According to a Hityonda spokesperson, the COCN-420 is available immediately in offices of Republicans and Democrats for about $30,000 year, comes with its own backwards ball cap, is self replicating, and has advanced agenda driven neural net programming lethargy features specifically designed to gut democracy from the inside while preserving an image of propriety and customer service.

COCN-420 is available in two models:

Option-JO responds to spoken commands preceded by the proper name "Josh". This unit spoke Standard English until it was 16 years old, but now speaks only in rapper dialect.

Option-JU responds to spoken commands preceded by the proper name "Justin". This unit introduces itself to people with the salutation "whut up?", and it has infinite battery resources to repeat the phrase "no worries" over and over.

Both models can be programmed to Kill/Protect Sarah Connor, and are shipped with a spare set of ankle length "plumber butt" shorts and "no fear" T-shirts for business casual functions.

###

©2009 Sam Mela

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Homeland Security Gets an "F"

Two events happened in the last month that every American should find disturbing, because they demonstrate that Homeland Security Department under Janet Napolitano cannot get the job done.

The first event, Northwest Flight 188, involved a failure of the TSA to alert the Air Force when a commercial jet overshot its destination and went out of radio contact for an extended period of time.

Shades of 9/11.

Luckily there were no terrorists on the plane, but if there had been, the Air Force would have been unable to help, because it took the TSA 40 minutes to contact the Air Force after Flight 188 overshot it's destination and both pilots went out of radio contact. Plenty of time to crash the plane into the Chicago Sears Tower.

Homeland Security gets an F.

The second event, the shootings at Fort Hood, was a tragedy of the first magnitude and, in my opinion, it was completely preventable. The perimeter of a military base it its teeth and claws. Access to a military base is normally defended by barbed wire fences and armed guards. Persons allowed past those defenses are generally deemed to be trustworthy.

The statements made by Major Malik Nidal Hasan to his co-workers were warning enough. Do you want to trust your life to someone of questionable loyalty? Should Janet Napolitano's Homeland Security Department put our military personnel in a position of jeopardy by failing to filter out individuals of questionble loyalty?

I'm very sorry, but on the basis of these two incidents, it is time for Janet Nepolitano to go.

This is a no brainer.

The Department of Homeland security is not operating in a state of readiness. How do you maintain a state of readiness? Simple. You drill. You make a list of the likely security breach scenarios and you train for them. You write procedures for what people are supposed to do to detect and react to security breaches, and then you train people to follow those procedures. And then you drill. You have announced drills and you have unannounced drills; and you keep training records and you evaluate readiness.

The military drills and evaluates its readiness every day. Generals know how to do this. Homeland security under Janet Nepolitano obviously does not. If the military operated at the same state of readiness as the Department of Homeland Security under Janet Nepolitano, none of our troops would come home from Iraq or Afghanistan alive.

The job of Homeland Security, contrary to what Washington Bureaucrats, led by Janet Nepolitano, seem to think, is not to make a big show of harrassing people's grandmother's at airports; even though this is a high visibility activity.

Where did Janet Napolitano train to operate a Department of Homeland Security? I don't think she did. I don't think she's qualified for the job. Every day Ms. Napolitano stays on the job is another day American Military personnel and civilians are put needlessly at risk.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Let's not Pretend Barack Obama is a Real President


Warning . . . rant ahead . . .

Ha ha . . . ok, it's a joke . . . sort of . . .

I just thought it would be a funny thing to say . . . now that the White House Communications Directors seems to think she should be in the business of telling me where I should get my news, one of the first things that always happens in countries ruled by dictators.

Yeah, I'm laughing at Barack Obama. But I am not disrespecting the office of the President. Barack Obama heaped disrespect on the office of the President by allowing his Director of Communications, Anita Dunn, to blur the sacred separation between government and news that Americans have cherished for 200+ years.

That Anita Dunn has not apologized to the American people for sticking her nose in matters where it doesn't belong, tells me her boss, ostensibly our President, has no repect for that separation.

This is America. As far as I'm concerned if Anita Dunn wants to say about Fox News, "let’s not pretend they’re a news network . . .", it's ok with me . . . sort of . . .

But she needs to remember she's speaking for the White House, which means she's speaking for Barack Obama. And you know what? In America we don't have dictators, and we don't have royalty, and we don't have to let our Presidents or their Communications Director lackeys to tell us who is a news network and who is not.

At least I can see the Fox News broadcast license and articles of incorporation if I want to, unlike Obama's birth certificate. So who's really pretending?

Maybe Communication Directors who live in glass White Houses shouldn't throw stones.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Update on Michele Bachmann High Noon Event

Just in from Tea Party Patriot Diana Reimer on the West Lawn of the Capitol.

Ms. Reimer is supposed to call in for a live interview later today, but the crowd has gotten so big, she's not sure if she'll be able to talk to us on her cell phone.

Ms. Reimer says many in the crowd are singing and the energy level is through the roof.

Live coverage at http://www.blogtalkradio.com/TeaPartyPatriots/2009/11/05/Live-Coverage-of-the-Vote-on-Health-Care

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

High Noon

Date: November 5, 2009
Time: High Noon
Location: West Lawn of Capitol Building

Do not forsake me Madame Speaker
On this healthcare voting day
Do not forsake me O my Bahhhh-mah
And don't throwwwwwwwwwww
The Constitution Awayyyyyyyy


Question for US Representative Pete Hoekstra

Dear Congressman Hoekstra,

I like you.

I like what you are doing.

But . . .

I just watched you on TV and you were asking the American people to come to Washington tomorrow to protest the House health care bill.

Then I called your office and the intern who answered was unaware of your request or the impending vote.

I suggest you train the interns who answer the phones in your office; and if there's an important event like a health care vote on Capitol Hill, maybe your interns should take a break from their iPods and PearlJam, and take a few minutes to understand the issues people are calling them about.

Can your Chief of Staff take care of that?

Thank you

Followup with other Michigan Republican Congressmen:

I called some more Michigan Republican offices

Representative Vern Ehlers (R)
Matt Evans in the Michigan didn't know anything about the Michele Bachman "High Noon" event.

Alicia Chatterdon in the DC office knew it was happening, but didn't know any details.

Representative David Camp (R)
Tom Smith in the Michigan office said he had heard about it but didn't know details, and forward me to the Washington Office.

Ashton (wouldn't give her last name) knew it was happening. Knew the sponsor, but not what time it was scheduled for.

Representative Fred Upton(R)

Mitzi Fitzpatrick in the Michigan office said said she couldn't tell me ANYTHING. So I aked her if her office had a policy about her not being able to answer any questions but she wouln't answer that question either.

Katy Novaria in the DC Office knew about the Michele Bachman protest at noon.

Monday, November 2, 2009

111 New Bureaucracies. How much is all THIS going to cost?

The House Republican Conference has compiled a list of all the new boards, bureaucracies, commissions, and programs created in H.R. 3962, Speaker Pelosi's government takeover of health care:

1. Retiree Reserve Trust Fund (Section 111(d), p. 61)

2. Grant program for wellness programs to small employers (Section 112, p. 62)

3. Grant program for State health access programs (Section 114, p. 72)

4. Program of administrative simplification (Section 115, p. 76)

5. Health Benefits Advisory Committee (Section 223, p. 111)

6. Health Choices Administration (Section 241, p. 131)

7. Qualified Health Benefits Plan Ombudsman (Section 244, p. 138)

8. Health Insurance Exchange (Section 201, p. 155)

9. Program for technical assistance to employees of small businesses buying Exchange coverage (Section 305(h), p. 191)

10. Mechanism for insurance risk pooling to be established by Health Choices Commissioner (Section 306(b), p. 194)

11. Health Insurance Exchange Trust Fund (Section 307, p. 195)

12. State-based Health Insurance Exchanges (Section 308, p. 197)

13. Grant program for health insurance cooperatives (Section 310, p. 206)

14. "Public Health Insurance Option" (Section 321, p. 211)

15. Ombudsman for "Public Health Insurance Option" (Section 321(d), p. 213)

16. Account for receipts and disbursements for "Public Health Insurance Option" (Section 322(b), p. 215)

17. Telehealth Advisory Committee (Section 1191 (b), p. 589)

18. Demonstration program providing reimbursement for "culturally and linguistically appropriate services" (Section 1222, p. 617)

19. Demonstration program for shared decision making using patient decision aids (Section 1236, p. 648)

20. Accountable Care Organization pilot program under Medicare (Section 1301, p. 653)

21. Independent patient-centered medical home pilot program under Medicare (Section 1302, p. 672)

22. Community-based medical home pilot program under Medicare (Section 1302(d), p. 681)

23. Independence at home demonstration program (Section 1312, p. 718)

24. Center for Comparative Effectiveness Research (Section 1401(a), p. 734)

25. Comparative Effectiveness Research Commission (Section 1401(a), p. 738)

26. Patient ombudsman for comparative effectiveness research (Section 1401(a), p. 753)

27. Quality assurance and performance improvement program for skilled nursing facilities (Section 1412(b)(1), p. 784)

28. Quality assurance and performance improvement program for nursing facilities (Section 1412 (b)(2), p. 786)

29. Special focus facility program for skilled nursing facilities (Section 1413(a)(3), p. 796)

30. Special focus facility program for nursing facilities (Section 1413(b)(3), p. 804)

31. National independent monitor pilot program for skilled nursing facilities and nursing facilities (Section 1422, p. 859)

32. Demonstration program for approved teaching health centers with respect to Medicare GME (Section 1502(d), p. 933)

33. Pilot program to develop anti-fraud compliance systems for Medicare providers (Section 1635, p. 978)

34. Special Inspector General for the Health Insurance Exchange (Section 1647, p. 1000)

35. Medical home pilot program under Medicaid (Section 1722, p. 1058)

36. Accountable Care Organization pilot program under Medicaid (Section 1730A, p. 1073)

37. Nursing facility supplemental payment program (Section 1745, p. 1106)

38. Demonstration program for Medicaid coverage to stabilize emergency medical conditions in institutions for mental diseases (Section 1787, p. 1149)

39. Comparative Effectiveness Research Trust Fund (Section 1802, p. 1162)

40. "Identifiable office or program" within CMS to "provide for improved coordination between Medicare and Medicaid in the case of dual eligibles" (Section 1905, p. 1191)

41. Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation (Section 1907, p. 1198)

42. Public Health Investment Fund (Section 2002, p. 1214)

43. Scholarships for service in health professional needs areas (Section 2211, p. 1224)

44. Program for training medical residents in community-based settings (Section 2214, p. 1236)

45. Grant program for training in dentistry programs (Section 2215, p. 1240)

46. Public Health Workforce Corps (Section 2231, p. 1253)

47. Public health workforce scholarship program (Section 2231, p. 1254)

48. Public health workforce loan forgiveness program (Section 2231, p. 1258)

49. Grant program for innovations in interdisciplinary care (Section 2252, p. 1272)

50. Advisory Committee on Health Workforce Evaluation and Assessment (Section 2261, p. 1275)

51. Prevention and Wellness Trust (Section 2301, p. 1286)

52. Clinical Prevention Stakeholders Board (Section 2301, p. 1295)

53. Community Prevention Stakeholders Board (Section 2301, p. 1301)

54. Grant program for community prevention and wellness research (Section 2301, p. 1305)

55. Grant program for research and demonstration projects related to wellness incentives (Section 2301, p. 1305)

56. Grant program for community prevention and wellness services (Section 2301, p. 1308)

57. Grant program for public health infrastructure (Section 2301, p. 1313)

58. Center for Quality Improvement (Section 2401, p. 1322)

59. Assistant Secretary for Health Information (Section 2402, p. 1330)

60. Grant program to support the operation of school-based health clinics (Section 2511, p. 1352)

61. Grant program for nurse-managed health centers (Section 2512, p. 1361)

62. Grants for labor-management programs for nursing training (Section 2521, p. 1372)

63. Grant program for interdisciplinary mental and behavioral health training (Section 2522, p. 1382)

64. "No Child Left Unimmunized Against Influenza" demonstration grant program (Section 2524, p. 1391)

65. Healthy Teen Initiative grant program regarding teen pregnancy (Section 2526, p. 1398)

66. Grant program for interdisciplinary training, education, and services for individuals with autism (Section 2527(a), p. 1402)

67. University centers for excellence in developmental disabilities education (Section 2527(b), p. 1410)

68. Grant program to implement medication therapy management services (Section 2528, p. 1412)

69. Grant program to promote positive health behaviors in underserved communities (Section 2530, p. 1422)

70. Grant program for State alternative medical liability laws (Section 2531, p. 1431)

71. Grant program to develop infant mortality programs (Section 2532, p. 1433)

72. Grant program to prepare secondary school students for careers in health professions (Section 2533, p. 1437)

73. Grant program for community-based collaborative care (Section 2534, p. 1440)

74. Grant program for community-based overweight and obesity prevention (Section 2535, p. 1457)

75. Grant program for reducing the student-to-school nurse ratio in primary and secondary schools (Section 2536, p. 1462)

76. Demonstration project of grants to medical-legal partnerships (Section 2537, p. 1464)

77. Center for Emergency Care under the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response (Section 2552, p. 1478)

78. Council for Emergency Care (Section 2552, p 1479)

79. Grant program to support demonstration programs that design and implement regionalized emergency care systems (Section 2553, p. 1480)

80. Grant program to assist veterans who wish to become emergency medical technicians upon discharge (Section 2554, p. 1487)

81. Interagency Pain Research Coordinating Committee (Section 2562, p. 1494)

82. National Medical Device Registry (Section 2571, p. 1501)

83. CLASS Independence Fund (Section 2581, p. 1597)

84. CLASS Independence Fund Board of Trustees (Section 2581, p. 1598)

85. CLASS Independence Advisory Council (Section 2581, p. 1602)

86. Health and Human Services Coordinating Committee on Women's Health (Section 2588, p. 1610)

87. National Women's Health Information Center (Section 2588, p. 1611)

88. Centers for Disease Control Office of Women's Health (Section 2588, p. 1614)

89. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality Office of Women's Health and Gender-Based Research (Section 2588, p. 1617)

90. Health Resources and Services Administration Office of Women's Health (Section 2588, p. 1618)

91. Food and Drug Administration Office of Women's Health (Section 2588, p. 1621)

92. Personal Care Attendant Workforce Advisory Panel (Section 2589(a)(2), p. 1624)

93. Grant program for national health workforce online training (Section 2591, p. 1629)

94. Grant program to disseminate best practices on implementing health workforce investment programs (Section 2591, p. 1632)

95. Demonstration program for chronic shortages of health professionals (Section 3101, p. 1717)

96. Demonstration program for substance abuse counselor educational curricula (Section 3101, p. 1719)

97. Program of Indian community education on mental illness (Section 3101, p. 1722)

98. Intergovernmental Task Force on Indian environmental and nuclear hazards (Section 3101, p. 1754)

99. Office of Indian Men's Health (Section 3101, p. 1765)

100.Indian Health facilities appropriation advisory board (Section 3101, p. 1774)

101.Indian Health facilities needs assessment workgroup (Section 3101, p. 1775)

102.Indian Health Service tribal facilities joint venture demonstration projects (Section 3101, p. 1809)

103.Urban youth treatment center demonstration project (Section 3101, p. 1873)

104.Grants to Urban Indian Organizations for diabetes prevention (Section 3101, p. 1874)

105.Grants to Urban Indian Organizations for health IT adoption (Section 3101, p. 1877)

106.Mental health technician training program (Section 3101, p. 1898)

107.Indian youth telemental health demonstration project (Section 3101, p. 1909)

108.Program for treatment of child sexual abuse victims and perpetrators (Section 3101, p. 1925)

109.Program for treatment of domestic violence and sexual abuse (Section 3101, p. 1927)

110.Native American Health and Wellness Foundation (Section 3103, p. 1966)

111.Committee for the Establishment of the Native American Health and Wellness Foundation (Section 3103, p. 1968)

NY 23rd Problems Started in Utah, South Carolina, Virginia, other states

Reporters, as we have traditionally understood their role, are supposed to get the real story.

But the story of what happened in New York's 23rd District started long ago and in many other places. The problem has been building up for a long time, and the media never seems to do what media is supposed to do -- get the whole story.

The Preston Bryant Story

I knew a RINO once.

He started out as a little baby RINO on the Lynchburg Virginia City Council; and later he was a Republican Delegate in the Virginia General Assembly. Today he is the Secretary of Natural Resources for Governor Tim Kaine of the Commonwealth of Virginia. His name is Preston Bryant and his facebook friend's list reads like a Who's Who of Virginia Progressives.

In my opinion, Preston took what the Republicans could give him and when he had taken everything they could give him, he moved on to take what the Democrats could give him, and at one point from his trusted position within the Virginia General Assembly, he was pretty much a one man wrecking crew against traditional conservative values in the Virginia General Assembly.

I don't read minds, but it is my opinion that Preston Bryant would have continued to milk the Republican Part for as long as it suited to do so, calculating to eventually become an embedded party boss in Central Virginia, or perhaps he set his sites higher, governor perhaps.

Fortunately, Preston Bryant has been flushed out of Central Virginia Republican Politics, but it was an ugly and (in my opinion) unnecessary process.

Central Virginia Republican leadership finally grew a pair and ran a candidate against Preston in a primary election in 2005. Democrats voted heavily in the Republican primary (they can do that in Virginia), so Preston skated through to the 2005 fall election, but he got the message and accepted a political appointment to the Democrat Governor Tim Kaine adminstration in 2006; and Central Virginia was finally (we hope) rid of "Republican" Preston Bryant.

Don't Blame Bryant's

I don't personally blame Preston Bryant for the damage he did, because I think Preston did the best he could with the ethical tools that were given him by God and his parents. I don't think Preston was morally capable of doing anything different than what he did.

I think that Republican party leadership was either unwise or corrupt in Virginia at a lot of levels, and rank and file Republicans did not move quickly enough to correct the problem.

Leadership Problems

The RINO problem in the Republican Party has become exaccerbated by Republican leadership that deals with the problem (until now) by simply pretending it doesn't exist; in effect tossing grassroots Republicans under the bus, in favor of incumbent RINOs.

Meanwhile, as if to add insult to injury, the RINO nearly always couches his betrayal as being "bipartisan" or "reaching across the aisle", which is something the 21rst century media just gobbles up.

And the problem with News Reporters is this -- they don't get what the average Republican really wants and they don't understand why Republicans have been frustrated since about 2004 and in some cases earlier.

For the most part, Republicans are frustrated with their own leadership. In many instances, Republican feel their leadership has asked them to vote for less than acceptable candidates out of "party loyalty".





To be continued . . .