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Posts tagged "Senior Citizens"

After warning that marriage equality for gays and lesbians will destroy America, conservative columnist Cal Thomas told Daystar’s Marcus and Joni on Monday that public schools are instruments of “the enemy” and warned that Obamacare and the belief in evolution will lead to the deaths of senior citizens. 

“Don’t put your children in the enemy’s re-education camps where they’re taught they evolved from slime and their nearest relative is down at the zoo and that’s why they like bananas on their cereal, and where they don’t learn the real history of America,” Thomas said before charging that the “government education system” is state-imposed Unitarianism that unfairly demonizes the Pilgrims as people who “hated the Indians and deprived them of their land.”

Later in the interview, Thomas said the theory of evolution will inevitably lead to the murder of “the elderly and then, soon after that, the handicapped, the unwanted, the mentally unfit and the rest” while Obamacare will establish death panels that will decide “who gets care” based in part on “how much you’re contributing to the tax base.”

“I spent a lot of time in the UK and I studied the NHS and I hear these horror stories. This is coming to America. You’re going to have — now Sarah Palin called them death panels, the left didn’t like that— but there will be bureaucrats deciding who gets care, who gets surgery and who doesn’t based on your age, the cost of the procedure and a lot of other factors, how much you’re contributing to the tax base,” he said.

“It’s coming and the reason it’s coming is we’ve devalued human life among the unborn. It will now be attacked at the other end of life among the elderly and then soon after that the handicapped, the unwanted, the mentally unfit and the rest because once you decide that we’re evolutionary accidents, we weren’t created in the image and likeness of an objectively existing God who endows us with a right to life, then all bets are off.”

Host Joni Lamb then asked Thomas and Ralph Reed, the head of the Faith and Freedom Coalition, “Twenty years ago, could you have ever imagined that America would have deteriorated in its moral values to the degree that we have here in 2014?”

“No, I would never have thought that it was possible,” Reed responded.

But Thomas said that Jesus “foresaw everything that was to come,” including the apparent collapse of America.

From the 04.14.2014 edition of Daystar’s Marcus and Joni:

h/t: Brian Tashman at RWW


VA Tea Party Delegate Calls Elderly Woman 'Intellectually Lazy' Over Medicaid Expansion

If you’re an elderly citizen concerned about your healthcare and you don’t understand why your own state legislatures refuse to expand Medicaid because of a Conservative ideological hatred of the government, then be careful when you question or email that representative.


Tea Party Virginia Delegate Tag Greason cares about his constituents. In fact, when they say something with which he disagrees, like ‘As an elderly woman, I think you should support Medicaid expansion,’ he cares so much he feels the need to set them straight–as Loudoun County resident Susan Merk discovered when she e-mailed him on March 28 when he told her she is ‘the problem’ and called her ‘intellectually lazy’ for supporting something that would greatly benefit her.

Merk voiced her support for the Medicaid Expansion. “It’s imperative that federal Medicaid aid is passing the [Virginia] budget,” Merk wrote. Greason respectfully disagreed…well, maybe not respectfully, but he did disagree. Her elected official mansplained to her that, “ObamaCare has already proven to be inefficient, costly, and an utter disaster,” and that “Medicaid is one of the largest and fastest-growing parts” of the budget even without expansion.

read more

Wish there were more weeks, but 12 paid weeks is a decent start. 

h/t: Bryce Covert at Think Progress Economy

Jim DeMint: Today’s worst person in the world!!!

Heritage Foundation president and former Senator Jim DeMint suggested to a town hall audience in Wilmington, Delaware Thursday that health care programs like Medicare and Medicaid are “un-American” and built on the principles of “socialism and collectivism.”

“I cannot think of anything that’s more un-American than national government-run health care,” DeMint said. “Those who believe in those principles of socialism and collectivism we’ve seen over the centuries, they see as their holy grail taking control of the health care system.”

Though DeMint was referring specifically to the Affordable Care Act, a law the Heritage Foundation is urging Congress to defund in next month’s continuing resolution, his comments could also apply to existing programs that have more direct government involvement than the ACA.

While the federal government does establish the rules and guidelines private insurers must follow in offering coverage for the uninsured though reform and directly finances insurance expansion for lower-income Americans who are eligible for Medicaid — often by contracting with private insurers — numerous other popular government programs like Medicare, the Veterans Health Administration and even the Federal Employees Health Benefits Plan (FEHBP) (which DeMint himself relied on for health care coverage as a member of the Senate) are operated by the government.

Public health comprises more than 40 percent of the nation’s health care spending and that percentage will remain stable as the Affordable Care Act is implemented. By 2014,“private health insurance is anticipated to account forroughly 31 percent of national health spending, or about the same share as was expected without enactment of the Affordable Care Act,” actuaries at the Center for Medicare and Medicaid estimate.

DeMint warned his town hall audience that the system threatens Americans’ freedoms. “[Health care is] such a personal service, it’s such a big part of the economy,” he said. “If [Democrats] can control that, they can control most areas of our lives.”

h/t: Igor Volsky at Think Progress Health

Fox News continues to be a reliable mouthpiece for screwing Americans for the hell of it. No, it doesn’t really even count as news anymore, but I’m still stumped as to just who the Fox News audience is. Who is this network catering to at this point, pissed-off ferrets with a craving for human flesh?

On Fox & Friends, co-host Steve Doocy asked why the AARP would want to enroll eligible seniors in the [SNAP] program and “encourage a welfare state.” Fox Business host Stuart Varney responded by dismissing the need to feed seniors — even those in extreme poverty — and claiming that the effort in Pennsylvania was about buying votes. He expanded:
VARNEY: Now the AARP, huge supporters of President Obama politically and financially. Big supporters of Obamacare. And now they’re out there signing people up for food stamps. This is part of the buy the vote campaign. They’re really shifting America, changing what America really is.

Oh no, an advocacy group for seniors is helping poor seniors eat food. Those bastards. But I have to ask—who, in the (remarkably, stunningly old) Fox News audience is this meant to piss off? I can see getting your audience riled that the probably-not-Christian black fellow probably did something-something-something therefore Benghazi. I can see how the particularly dim corners of the Fox News audience, the dirt-stupid folks for whom waving a little imported flag around constitutes the beginning and end of their entire civic duty towards their country and fellow citizens, will clutch the “IRS scandal” to their chests and never let go, not if you debunked it ten times or a hundred. “The AARP” was already a damn unlikely addition to the ACORN-Benghazi-Obamaphone conspiracy roundup, though, and that their perceived crime is wanting poverty-stricken people to get access to a monthly food budget considerably smaller than the price of the wine at Stuart Varney’s last restaurant outing—no, that one’s a bit odd.


(Hypothesis: “business networks” are nothing but the prosperity gospel with the God stuff taken out of it. It’s all faith based, it’s all based on motivational-sounding hucksterism masquerading as a genuine expertise in something else, and it’s all presented by people who make the majority of their money telling you why you should send them yours.)


Daily Kos Tumblr: 

h/t: Hunter at Daily Kos

AARP strives to serve the interests of all people over the age of 50, and that includes members of the LGBT community. The organization has a webpage dedicated to AARP Pride, with resources related to issues like marriage equality’s legal benefits, nondiscrimination protections in nursing homes, and unique health concerns like HIV. Because of AARP’s inclusiveness, the American Family Association is specifically targeting the retirement group for contributing money to the “homosexual agenda.” AFA Executive Vice President Buddy Smith offered this warning:

SMITH: When you reach the age of a person like myself and you begin to get information from the AARP saying that they will represent you and your values and standards, you’d better be careful. This group is a very, very powerful Washington lobby, and you just may be very surprised and disappointed to see those things that they are promoting and those things they are opposing.

Be very careful that you know what your fees are going for because the AARP is not on your side. If you are a Christian and believe in Biblical values, you can pretty much count on the fact that everything that you are in favor of, the AARP is opposing.

LGBT older adults face many unique challenges, especially in regards to their very economic well-being. Because of discrimination and alienation throughout their lifetime, as well as their inability to claim partner benefits like Social Security, LGBT older adults are much more likely to be living in isolation and poverty.

H/T: Zack Ford at Think Progress LGBT

Gordon Klingenschmitt typically uses his Pray In Jesus Name Project email list to attack gays and gay right supporters, but yesterday he asked members to join renewed efforts by the House GOP to repeal the health care reform law. Klingenschmitt, a longtime Religious Right activist who once performed an exorcism on a gay rape survivor, warned that “federal bureaucrats will enforce Obamacare to exterminate the elderly, systematically” and claimed that “the government is now abolishing the church with the state sword.”

h/t: Brian Tashman at Right Wing Watch

On October 30, Fox & Friends hosted game show host and Generation America spokesperson Chuck Woolery to slam AARP as a partisan organization that has lobbied in support of President Obama’s health care reform law. That Fox would host Woolery to slam the AARP as “partisan” simply isn’t credible, given that Generation America is itself a conservative advocacy group that lobbied stridently against the Affordable Care Act. Generation America also has a financial stake in attacking AARP, as both groups compete to offer the same services and discounts to senior citizens. 

Host Steve Doocy began the interview by questioning AARP’s nonpartisan stance and introduced Woolery as a spokesperson for Generation America, the “largest conservative alternative to AARP.”

Woolery slammed AARP for engaging in the fight for health care reform, calling it “disgusting” for the organization to say it is nonpartisan. He claimed that AARP coordinated with Obama administration officials to orchestrate the passage of the bill, and said that health care reform “would not be a law today if it were not for AARP.”  

It is also not unusual for the AARP to be actively involved in legislation. The group routinely spends millions per year on lobbying efforts.

Meanwhile, Doocy failed to note that Generation America is a direct competitor to AARP, offering much of the same benefits to seniors, such as insurance, credit cards, and travel discounts.

On Fox & Friends, Woolery claimed that Generation America wants to ”inform seniors more than anything else.” But the group has been a vocal opponent of the Affordable Care Act, promoting a petition on its website to repeal it. In a December 2010 op-ed in The Washington Times, Generation America founder Michael Young wrote, “Americans reject Obamacare by overwhelming — and growing — majorities because it was shoved down our throats with none of the transparency Mr. Obama repeatedly promised, using the kind of partisan politics he assured us would by now be a thing of the past.”

As previously reported by Media Matters, Generation America has also sponsored Glenn Beck, who called the group “your conservative voice in the government” and the answer to the “sham” that is AARP.

From the 10.30.2012 edition of FNC’s Fox and Friends:

h/t: MMFA

The nonpartisan Kaiser Family Foundation said Monday that a year-long study has found that Rep. Paul Ryan’s (R-WI) plan to turn Medicare into a privatized “premium support” coupon program will result in higher costs for six out of every 10 beneficiaries just to maintain their current levels of service.

Kaiser’s study (PDF) found that his plan to partially privatize Medicare would result in wild variations in policy costs across the country, with some states set to be hit much worse than others, confirming in greater detail earlier studies that found Ryan’s plan would result insignificantly higher costs for most seniors.

In particular, Kaiser notes that the crucial swing state of Florida — where former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney currently enjoys a slight lead in the polls over President Barack Obama — would see the worst fallout, with about 77 percent of Medicare beneficiaries expected to pay $200 or more per month under the Republican’s coupon program.

It would be especially expensive in areas with the highest concentration of Medicare enrollees, like Miami-Dade County, where nearly all seniors face paying nearly $500 more per month, or Palm Beach County, where 99 percent of plans would go up by more than $370 a month. Kaiser added that Los Angeles County and Orange County in California also face some of the worst price hikes under the Ryan coupon plan, where 99 percent of seniors face paying an additional $$216-$260 more per month.

Overall, seniors would face increased costs of about $720 per year on average across the country under Ryan’s proposed plan, Kaiser added.

“That means that under Romney’s plan, millions of people—especially those with complicated health needs who see a lot of different doctors—would have to give up their doctors or pay extra to maintain access to their choices,” a prepared statement from the Obama campaign claimed. “Even worse, this study is just examining the impact of their plan in a single year. It ignores the role of adverse selection against traditional Medicare—which would drive costs higher and force more people to give up their choice of doctor. It also doesn’t factor in the impact of the cap Romney would place on the growth rate of the vouchers, which results in seniors paying thousands of dollars more every year regardless of which plan they choose.”

Both Romney and Ryan have campaigned on the claim that 7.4 million seniors will lose their access to Medicare due to cuts in Obama’s health reforms, but many fact checkers have refuted that representation of the law. The Affordable Care Act does not cut Medicare benefits, but instead aims to find billions in savings in the Medicare Advantage program, which officials say is unnecessarily costly. The 7.4 million figure cited by both conservative candidates is actually the Congressional Budget Office’s estimate of how many more people would be covered under traditional Medicare plans that cost beneficiaries less. Additionally, Ryan’s budget includes the same provision, and most Republicans in Congress have voted for it twice.

The Romney/Ryan proposal to transform Medicare’s guaranteed benefit into a “premium support” structure for future retirees could increase costs by almost $60,000 for seniors reaching the age of 65 in 2023, a new report from the Center for American Progress finds. Current seniors would also have to pay more for preventive, hospital, and physician services should Romney and Ryan repeal the Affordable Care Act, facing an increase in health spending of between $7,900 and $18,600 over the course of their retirement.

 If seniors choose a plan that costs more than the voucher, they will have to pay the difference. As a result, most seniors will have to spend more on coverage. Here are 5 reasons why:

1) Current seniors will pay more. The premium support structure does not kick in until 2023, so current seniors will remain in the existing Medicare program. But should Romney/Ryan repeal the Affordable Care Act’s savings, beneficiaries will face higher cost sharing and premiums (particularly for preventive services) and seniors who have received prescription drug discounts, will now pay more for their medications. What’s more, Romney/Ryan would lower Medicaid spending significantly beginning next year, shifting federal spending to states and beneficiaries, and increasing costs for the 9 million Medicare recipients who are dependent on Medicaid.

2) Cost shift to future retirees. The average beneficiary will receive a premium support credit of $7,500 in 2023 to purchase coverage in traditional Medicare or private insurance. But that amount will only grow at a rate of GDP plus 1.5 percentage points and will not keep up with health care costs. So while the federal government will spend less on the program, seniors will pay more in premiums.

3) Private insurers will charge more. Private plans lack the market clout and efficiencies of traditional Medicare, experience higher profits and administrative costs, and will charge more for the same coverage seniors currently enjoy in the traditional program.

4) Private insurers will cherry pick the healthiest beneficiaries. The existing private plans in Medicare — insurers that participate in Medicare Advantage — have long attracted the healthiest, lowest-cost enrollees from the Medicare population. Without robust regulations, private insurers will have an incentive to ramp up benefits that attract healthier seniors (i.e. preventive services), while playing down care that sicker beneficiaries rely on (i.e. chemotherapy or services to manage expensive chronic conditions).

h/t: Igor Volsky at Think Progress Election

WASHINGTON — The Medicare proposals advocated by presumptive Republican vice-presidential candidate Paul Ryan are at the heart of the Democratic campaign to take back control of the House of Representatives. A close look at the most competitive races, via the new House Outlook section of The Huffington Post’s Election Dashboard, helps explain why.

Republicans currently hold a 49-seat majority in the House; 242 seats are held by Republicans and 193 by Democrats. In order to regain a majority and put Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) back in the Speaker’s chair, Democrats would need to pick up 25 seats.

A Huffington Post analysis shows that 43 of 45 incumbent Republicans regarded as vulnerable by political handicappers voted for the budget that Rep. Ryan (R-Wis.) authored as House Budget Committee chairman in 2012. All 45 voted for Ryan’s budget in 2011.

Current US House projections, via The Huffington Post's House Outlook

As of this writing, the handicapper ratings show that Democrats will fall short of a majority even if they sweep all of the districts currently leaning their way or regarded as toss-ups. To take back the House, they would also need to pick off another 16 seats among those currently rated as “leaning” Republican by the handicappers.

Democratic candidates across the country have been quick to tie their opponents to the Ryan budget, which would overhaul Medicare and make deep cuts to other government spending. They see the issue as politically toxic for the Republican Party, especially in competitive races in states with high populations of senior citizens, such as Arizona, Florida and Pennsylvania.

h/t: Max Blumenthal and Adam Carlson at The Huffington Post

Texas Gov. Rick Perry (R) is taking a lot of well-deserved criticism for his absurd claims that Medicare and Social Security violate the Constitution. But these are hardly the only part of Perry’s constitutional agenda, which seem designed to inflict unnecessary cruelty on America’s seniors. Perry also wants to repeal the federal government’s 16th Amendment authority to enact income taxes and replace it with a tax system that would slash millions of Americans life savings:

Perry declares that the 16th Amendment represents “the great milestone on the road to serfdom” because it represented “the birth of wealth redistribution in the United States.”

Perry clearly states that “we should restrict the unlimited source of revenue that the federal government has used to grow beyond its constitutionally prescribed powers.” How? Here’s what Perry suggests, in addition to scrapping the current tax code:

Another option would be to repeal the 16th Amendment to the Constitution (providing the power for the income tax) altogether, and then pursue an alternative model of taxation such as a national sales tax or the Fair Tax.

There are countless problems with Perry’s national sales tax proposal (“Fair Tax” is just a more Orwellian term for the national sales tax), but one of the biggest problems is its impact on seniors or anyone else with significant life savings. Perry’s plan would require millions of Americans to be taxed twice on much of the money they have saved for retirement.

magine that you earn $10,000, and are required to pay 25 percent income tax on those earnings. That means that you are left with $7,500 that you are free to spend or save however you choose. If Perry gets his way, however, Congress will suddenly enact a massive new sales tax after you have already paid income taxes on your earnings. The result is that every single one of your $7,500 will be taxed again when you make a purchase — causing nearly one in three dollars in your savings to be eaten up by sales taxes. Thanks to Rick Perry, you are left with only about $5,000 of your original $10,000 in income.

h/t: ThinkProgress Justice

Last week, ThinkProgress reported that Texas Gov. Rick Perry (R) believes that Medicare and Social Security are unconstitutional. Turns out, he’s not he only one. At a town hall in Tulsa, Oklahoma, Sen. Tom Coburn (R-OK) appeared to embrace Perry’s claim that providing for America’s seniors is unconstitutional:

QUESTION: With more and more cuts in Medicare and Medicaid on the horizon, I’m really worried about protecting our frail elderly in the Medicare and Medicaid facilities. So I would like to know how Congress proposes to balance the budget and still make sure our frail elderly in these facilities are protected and have trained care staff.

COBURN: That’s a great question. The first question I have for you is if you look in the Constitution, where is it the federal government’s role to do that? That’s number one. Number two is the way I was brought up that’s a family responsibility, not a government responsibility.


More proof that the Rethugs don’t give a shit about senior citizens (or anyone who isn’t like them).

h/t: ThinkProgress Justice