Bad Deeds for 3/22/2010

First, the Good News:


How to Win in November: Just Three Words – “Tell the Truth” – The truth is very important, but I don’t think you need me to tell you that. What I feel we all need to be reminded of is the telling part. We need to tell everyone, and we need to tell it often.
That’s why I write-up these Bad Deeds; so that you can recognize bunk when you see it or hear it, and so that you can educate others. Please help by spreading the word, or better yet, get your friends on the Bad Deeds distribution list. Just drop me an e-mail. – Jim
(You can see the long, long history of Bad Deeds.)

An Idea for a Bumper Sticker
“Dear Sarah,
That hopey, changey thing is working just fine for me!”

Tell the Senate to Pass the Final Fixes to Health Care Reform
Get us across the finish line.


Be Part of History – President Obama will soon sign comprehensive health care reform into law. Supporters now have a chance to add our names as “Co-signers” of this historic legislation — adding our names next to President Obama’s to show our pride in helping bring about this great achievement.

Organizing for America will establish a permanent archive with all the signatures, so that generations to come will have a record of those who stood together in this moment and won this fight for our future.


More Hope and Change: House Approves Huge Changes to Student Loan Program – Legislation hailed by supporters as the most significant change to college student lending in a generation passed the House on Sunday night. The student aid initiative, which House Democrats attached to their final amendments to the health-care bill, would overhaul the student loan industry, eliminating a $60 billion program that supports private student loans with federal subsidies and replacing it with government lending to students. The House amendments will now go to the Senate.


Passage of Health Care Reform from David Frum, Former Speechwriter to President George W. Bush

Conservatives and Republicans today suffered their most crushing legislative defeat since the 1960s.

It’s hard to exaggerate the magnitude of the disaster. Conservatives may cheer themselves that they’ll compensate for today’s expected vote with a big win in the November 2010 elections. […]

No illusions please: This bill will not be repealed. Even if Republicans scored a 1994 style landslide in November, how many votes could we muster to re-open the “doughnut hole” and charge seniors more for prescription drugs? How many votes to re-allow insurers to rescind policies when they discover a pre-existing condition? How many votes to banish 25 year olds from their parents’ insurance coverage? And even if the votes were there – would President Obama sign such a repeal?

We followed the most radical voices in the [Republican] party and the [Conservative] movement, and they led us to abject and irreversible defeat. […]

So today’s defeat for free-market economics and Republican values is a huge win for the conservative entertainment industry. Their listeners and viewers will now be even more enraged, even more frustrated, even more disappointed in everybody except the responsibility-free talkers on television and radio. For them (Democrats), it’s mission accomplished. For the cause they purport to represent, it’s Waterloo all right: ours (Conservatives).


And now, on with the Bad Deeds:

Conservative Blogger Calls for President Obama’s Assassination – Self-described conservative blogger and writer Solomon Forell called for Obama’s assassination on the eve of House Democrats’ passage of health care reform.

“ASSASSINATION! America, we survived the assassinations of Lincoln and Kennedy. We’ll surely get over a bullet 2 Barack Obama’s head!” Forell Tweeted.

He added: “The Next American with a Clear Shot should drop Obama like a bad habit. 4get Blacks or his claim to be Black. Turn on Barack Obama.”


Tea Party Protests: ‘Ni**er,’ ‘Fa**ot’ Shouted At Members Of Congress – Preceding the president’s speech to a gathering of House Democrats, thousands of protesters descended around the Capitol to protest the passage of health care reform. The gathering quickly turned into abusive heckling, as members of Congress passing through Longworth House office building were subjected to epithets and even mild physical abuse.

A staffer for Rep. James Clyburn (D-S.C.) told reporters that Rep. Emanuel Cleaver (D-Mo.) had been spat on by a protestor. Rep. John Lewis (D-Ga.), a hero of the civil rights movement, was called a ‘ni–er.’ And Rep. Barney Frank (D-Mass.) was called a “faggot,” as protestors shouted at him with deliberately lisp-y screams.

The Buffalo News reports that Rep. Louise Slaughter’s district office in Pine View, New York, was vandalized on Saturday. Sometime early this morning, someone threw a brick through the front window of her Pine Avenue office.

The Associated Press reports that Capitol Police arrested the man who spit on Cleaver, but the Congressman won’t press charges.


Cigna Gives $110.9 Million Compensation Package To Ex-CEO – Insurance giant Cigna last year gave compensation packages worth more than $120 million to two executives who left the company, according to a filing with the SEC on Friday.

The vast majority of that total went to former chairman and CEO H. Edward Hanway who left his post with a retirement package worth $110.9 million — which included $18.8 million in executive compensation for 2009, as well as a healthy pension plan, deferred compensation and stock options.

Hanway’s retirement package is sure to provide fodder to reform proponents, who insist that too much money and resources are wasted on the excesses of the private insurance industry — often at the expense of consumers.

In addition to Hanway, former Cigna Executive Vice President and CFO Michael Bell received a $10.9 million executive compensation package in 2009. Bell left the company abruptly that year — no reason was given for his departure.

Cigna’s current president and CEO, David M. Cordani, earned a salary of more than $6.5 million in 2009, according to the SEC filing. With more than $19 billion in revenues reported in 2008, Cigna remains one of the most profitable insurers in the country.


Palin’s Latest Health Care Lie – Yesterday, Sarah Palin tweeted:

“Shocking new questions re:whether military healthcare plans r protected under Obamacare. How will underpaid troops afford their own purchase?” [sic]

Palin then posted a Twitter link to a National Review blog raising the issue of whether military health care plans would be covered under “Obamacare” — the derogatory term that the right-wing has labeled health care reform legislation.

As is often the case with Palin, it was as duplicitous as it was disingenuous.

Palin — who her former aides in Alaska say was often “clueless” about the legislative process — was apparently unaware that the House was in the midst of passing legislation yesterday (by a bipartisan vote of 403 to 0) that specifically protected all members of the military from any requirements mandated by the health-care legislation.

John Rowan, head of Vietnam Veterans of America, lauded the passage of the House legislation and said that it “ensures that health care programs for veterans, active duty military, retired military, and their families/survivors will not be affected negatively by the pending health care reform legislation.”

He labeled Palin’s assertions — and others who joined her in raising such allegations — a “false alarm.”


David Gregory Allows Boehner to Tell His ‘Best Healthcare System in the World’ Lie Again – While discussing whether or not the Democrats are going to have the votes to pass this health care bill, John Boehner repeats the talking point that the United States has the “best health care system in the world” with predictions of doom and gloom if the bill passes.

Rather than pointing out that we’re actually about 37th in the world with our health care outcomes, Gregory jumps in there before Steny Hoyer can respond and shows a picture of Nancy Pelosi on a horse trying to herd cats and changes the subject instead.

Is it asking too much of these talking heads to call one of these guys out after they’ve told this lie about a thousand times on the television?


Electric Generating Facility Near Richmond, Texas, Released 889 Pounds of Mercury – In a report released Wednesday, Washington, D.C.-based Environmental Integrity Project found that the W.A. Parish electric generating facility near Richmond, Texas, released 889.2 pounds of mercury in 2008. drastic reduction in the emissions could have been achieved if all plants had installed up-to-date pollution controls.

“But right now there is nothing on the books to regulate these plants,” said Ilan Levin, an attorney for EIP, a nonpartisan nonprofit group.





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About Jim Vogas

Texas A&M Aggie, Retired aerospace engineer, former union member, Vietnam vet, Demcratic Party organizer, husband and father.

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