Sunday, October 25, 2015

Sure, The GOP Wants To Beat Trump... But With Ben Carson, Who's Even More Of A Crackpot?


The DWT art department never tells the editorial department what to write about; they just send subtle hints that we'll not covering an important story well enough by sending photos that they think need to be seen, like the picture above one of them snapped while he was out selling books. By the way, he's demanding Secret Service protection because so many progressives are in the book stores that he's afraid they'll start pulling out their semi-automatics and now him down. "I’m in great danger because I challenge the secular progressive movement to the very core... [T]hey see me as an existential threat and I know that, but I also believe in the good lord and we take reasonable precautions."

Now that Carson is beating out Trump as the GOP primary voters' nut-of-the-month, both the art department and the murderous, secular, gun-toting progressives haunting book stores seem to be demanding some words of wisdom on Ben Carson. Frankly, I don't have much to say. He's a 64 year old, soft-spoken gaffe-prone guy from Detroit who did well separating siamese twins when he was working as a pediatric neurosurgeon. His ancestors were Makua Bantus from what is now southern Tanzania and his dad was a Seventh-Day Adventist preacher from rural Georgia. Carson is still a Seventh-Day Adventist himself, which has led him to say he doesn't belief in evolution and, bizarrely, that he expects right-wingers to persecute Seventh-Day Adventists for keeping the Sabbath and that this persecution will immediately bring on the Apocalypse and the return to earth of Jesus Christ.

Carson, who insists President Obama is a "psychopath," was a columnist for the right-wing Washington Times and then a regular paid Fox News expert and he pulled down something north of $10 million in 2014, mostly from speeches to right-wing audiences and from book royalties, Fox and by serving on several corporate boards. He quit the GOP over hypocrisy in the 1990s and was didn't re-register as a Republican until the very end of 2014 when he decided to run for president. Although he supports raising the minimum wage a little and he's left of Hillary Clinton and all the other conservatives running for president when it comes to Glass-Steagall, other than that his policy positions are all standard fare GOP claptrap: there's no man-influenced climate change in his orthodox Republican view; he's anti-Choice, pro-flat tax, gun-nut, anti-LGBT, home-school/charter school backer and horribly anti-health care.

A doctor who is anti-healthcare? Well, just for poor people. Aside from calling the Affordable Care Act "the worst thing that has happened in this nation since slavery," he's running on a platform that calls for abolishing Medicare and Medicaid. He's even further right on Medicare than Paul Ryan admits to being and he wants to replace both popular programs with savings accounts that would start with a $2,000 per person grant from the federal government, a third of which they would be required to spend on health insurance. That would amount to between $600-650 billion dollars a year. I recently completed a full year of cancer treatment and stem cell replacement and the bills were somewhat beyond $2,000. In fact, they were somewhat beyond $2,000,000. Carson's prescription for health care has given me reason for pause.

The evangelical blue collar conservatives who have put him ahead of Trump in Iowa and Wisconsin-- and ahead of every other Republican in all the other states polled (his RealClearPolitics national average is 21.4%-- as opposed to Trump's 27.2%. Third place is Rubio with 9.2%, then Cruz with 7.8% and bringing up the rear of the second tier is the Jebster with 7.2%) aren't aware he wants to abolish their Medicare.

When asked by NBC reporter John Harwood if he thinks he could replace the popular Medicare system with his saving accounts scheme he replied like this:
When people are able to see how much more freedom they will have, and how much more flexibility they will have, and how much more choice they would have, I think it's going to be a no-brainer.

The reason that I've come up with the health savings account system, utilizing the same monies that we use to pay for health now, (it) provides a very different paradigm. Eighty percent-plus of your encounters are going to be between you and the health-care provider, with no third-party in there sucking out the resources. When that happens, there's a fiduciary responsibility and relationship that develops between the patient and a care provider. You're going to have much more transparency, much more responsibility. That's going to bring the whole system into a more free economic model. That's how you control price and that's how you control quality.

You also give people flexibility to transfer money within a family. So if you were $500 short, your wife could give it to you, your daughter could give it to you, your uncle, your cousin. The only thing that comes out of your insurance is catastrophic events. How often do you have those? Not very often. So the cost of that drops dramatically. If you make it possible to buy it across state lines, it drops even more.

Now you've got a system where people begin to pay a lot more attention to how they're going to utilize their dollars. You've got a system where members of the family are going to be concerned about you. "Grandpa, how come you're smoking all those cigarettes? You may be affecting me."

You get a diabetic foot ulcer, instead of going to the emergency room and spending a big chunk of your HSA, you're going to go to the clinic. You're going to be incentivized to do that. And of course, the difference is the emergency room patches you up and sends you out. The clinic says, "Let's get your diabetes under control so you're not back here in three weeks." That's how you save money.
The other Republican campaigns are overjoyed to see him knocking Trump out of first place and-- in their ideal situation-- out of the race entirely. Once that's accomplished they all know how easy it will be to eviscerate Carson's Medicare position and make him a non-factor, leaving the GOP primary voters to pick between standard politicians, either an Establishment guy like Jeb or Rubio or a nihilist/fascist like Cruz, presumably with Fiorina as a running mate. But Trump's not going down with a fight. He was already at it on Twitter, his preferred battleground, this morning:

And that last one-- this afternoon, was just a matter of time. Someone finally told Trump to jump on it. Will it lead to the end of the Carson threat? It should. But these Republicans are so out of their minds, who knows? Anyway... better yet... Bernie.

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At 7:44 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

The KKKlown KKKar denizens are NOT distinguishable from one another in terms of "crackpottedness."

John Puma

At 7:46 AM, Anonymous Exit 135 said...

"The only thing that comes out of your insurance is catastrophic events. How often do you have those?"

For the single woman who busts tables, a single visit to a pediatrician is a catastrophic event.

At 7:51 AM, Anonymous Exit 135 said...

"You also give people flexibility to transfer money within a family. So if you were $500 short, your wife could give it to you, your daughter could give it to you, your uncle, your cousin."

According to the IRS, transferring money is an in kind gift, and must be reported as income.

Does Ben know that the disintegration of the nuclear family began over 50 years ago. And that Black Americans have a lower rate of intact families that White America?

Guess not.

At 4:54 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ben Carson proves that you don't need a brain in order to operate on one.


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