Tag Archive: Howard Dean

Et Tu, Howard?

Cross posted from The Stars Hollow Gazette

Gaius Publius at AMERICAblog is not alone in “hating this stuff“.

Money buys the world, both the Dem side and the other. In fact, I’ve said far too many times – the goal of Money is to enable Republicans and neuter the Dems. It’s why the rachet works.

And by Money I mean the big boys (Our Betters) who own both sides of every bet. Money is why progressives never win, even when Democrats do.

Lee Fang: Howard Dean Advises Corporate Health Care Clients To Fund ‘Both Sides,’ Run Attack Ads

One of the biggest problems with lobbying in Washington D.C. is the extent to which so many influence peddlers work behind closed doors, refusing to disclose their clients or register their work with the ethics office. Newt Gingrich became the poster boy for this phenomenon with the revelation that he was paid $1.6 million by Freddie Mac’s lobbying office, a fee the former Speaker laughably tried to downplay as part of a contract for “history” lessons. But Gingrich isn’t the only politician working as an unregistered lobbyist.  I have uncovered video that shows liberal icon Howard Dean discussing his government affairs work for corporate interests. [..]

Dean has been lobbying without disclosure for about three years. In 2009 after his stint as chairman of the Democratic Party, Dean joined the law/lobbying firm McKenna, Long & Aldridge as a non-attorney “Strategic Advisor.” The firm’s lobbying practice has a wide range of clients, from health care, to insurance, to even Keystone XL beneficiary TransCanada. The firm website says Dean “focuses on health care and energy issues, as well as providing expertise derived from his extensive experience in public office.” The firm seems to advertise Dean as a lobbyist, despite the fact Dean has not registered as a lobbyist.

What is even worse is his support of an organization that has been designated as a terrorist organization under US law. From Glenn Greenwald at Salon:

One of the most under-reported political stories of the last year is the devoted advocacy of numerous prominent American political figures on behalf of an Iranian group long formally designated as a Terrorist organization under U.S. law. A large bipartisan cast has received substantial fees from that group, the Mojahedin-e Khalq (MEK), and has then become their passionate defenders. The group of MEK shills includes former top Bush officials and other Republicans (Michael Mukasey, Fran Townsend, Andy Card, Tom Ridge, Rudy Giuliani) as well as prominent Democrats (Howard Dean, Ed Rendell, Bill Richardson, Wesley Clark). As The Christian Science Monitor reported last August, those individuals “have been paid tens of thousands of dollars to speak in support of the MEK.” No matter what one thinks of this group – here is a summary of its activities – it is formally designated as a Terrorist group and it is thus a felony under U.S. law to provide it with any “material support.”

There is more from Jeremiah Goulka, formerly a lawyer from the Bush administration and an Iraq analyst for the RAND Corporation, in these two op-ed articles posted by Greenwald at Salon:

THE IRAN WAR HAWKS’ FAVORITE CULT GROUP

Despite the flurry of support by some prominent politicians as Secretary of State Hillary Clinton scrutinizes its case, the Mujahedin-e Khalq (MEK), a dissident Iranian group based in Iraq with a propaganda arm in Paris, is no enigma.

The U.S. declared the MEK a terrorist organization 13 years ago partly because the group is thought to have assassinated three U.S. Army officers and three U.S. civilian contractors in Tehran in the 1970s. The group’s pep rallies feature U.S. politicians lured with high fees to come speak on its behalf. The MEK wants the U.S. government to take the group off its terrorist list – as the E.U. and U.K. have already done. But before that happens the group requires close scrutiny.

INVESTIGATIONS BEGIN INTO MEK SUPPORTERS

The U.S. Treasury Department has begun an investigation into nearly two dozen prominent former government officials who have been paid tens of thousands of dollars to promote the Mujahedin-e Khalq (MEK), an Iranian dissident cult group that has been designated by the State Department as a Foreign Terrorist Organization (FTO) since 1997.

These officials include several prominent George W. Bush Administration anti-terror officials like Homeland Security secretary Tom Ridge, Homeland Security advisor Frances Fragos Townsend, Attorney General Michael Mukasey, UN ambassador John Bolton; as well as former Republican Mayor of New York, Rudolph Giuliani; former Democratic governors Ed Rendell of Pennsylvania and Howard Dean of Vermont; ex-FBI Director Louis Freeh; and retired chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Hugh Shelton.  These former officials have given speeches at home and abroad urging the State Department to remove the MEK from the FTO list.

I was a supporter and admirer of Dr. Dean when he ran for the Democratic nomination in 2004.  I met him at a conference in 2009 and had a conversation with him about humanitarian aid. As of late, I’ve been extremely disappointed with many of the things he’s said and policies he has espoused. I should not have been too surprised at this, since most of the Democrats that I supported have left me hating the stuff that they do.

Healthcare: A Blast From the Past

December 7, 1964  from a newspaper in the national archives

Says Medicare Bill Will Be Passed

Newark – Speaking at a meeting of the New Jersey Association of Health Underwriters at the Military Park Hotel here Friday, Joseph J. Sear, president and chairman of the board of the Progressive Life Insurance Company of Red Bank, said the outcome of the recent election makes it virtually certain that the 89th Congress, meeting in January, will pass a Medicare bill, and that it will be signed by the President.

“We, in the accident and health insurance business,” he said, “should have no fears that the passage of such a bill will hurt our business unless it becomes the opening wedge for a socialized medicine program such as in Great Britain, which includes everyone from cradle to the grave. The bill before Congress is generally restricted to providing medical aid for persons 65 years of age and older under the Social Security Program, and we are still insuring primarily persons below the age of 65.

“Since I last spoke to you 13 years ago, (note: 1951) the people cared for by hospital expense policies increased from $85 million to $145 million and the people cared for by medical expense policies increased from $28 million to $102 million, and the trend is still upward.”

Forty Six Years Later

March 23, 2010. Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA), aka Dole/Nixon/RomneyObamaCare, signed into law by “Democratic” President.   2009 Bill passed by Senate still lacks universal coverage and the option of purchasing government insurance, but contains universally loathed tax mandate and excise tax pushed by “Democratic” Senator from Massachusetts and WH “Economist” consultant from MIT.  Bill not designed to add more Medicaid coverage until 2014.   http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/P…

September 17, 2010. Number of uninsured Americans now rises to 50.7 million, or 1 out of 6, or 16%.   Workers now paying 47% more for family health insurance coverage than in 2005, while employers pay 20% more.

http://www.usatoday.com/news/n…

January 3, 2011 New Republican Majority leader Eric Cantor introduces bill to rules committee called “Repealing the Job Killing Health Care Law Act”   “Effective as of the enactment of Public Law 111- 148, such act is repealed, and the provisions of law amended or repealed by such Act are restored or revived as if such act had not been enacted.”

pdf download text here: http://rules-republicans.house…

January 4, 2011  from Kaiser Health News-

House Republicans have scheduled a Jan. 12 vote to repeal the health care law. While the measure is expected to pass the House, Democrats in the Senate have pledged to stop the bill.

http://www.kaiserhealthnews.or…

January 5, 2011 Shuffle the Deck Chairs on the Titanic


The Office of Consumer Information and Insurance Oversight, created just after the law passed, is about to be folded into the federal Medicare agency, signaling a major organizational shift just months after the office was created, administration officials said.

In addition, Michael Hash, who has been serving as a top White House health adviser, has taken the reins of the Office of Health Reform at the Department of Health and Human Services. Hash succeeds Jeanne Lambrew,  who has been director of the office since May 2009 and has played a central role on the health law. Lambrew, a former aide to President Bill Clinton, will stay on at HHS as an adviser to Secretary Kathleen Sebelius.

The insurance oversight office was headed by Jay Angoff, who battled with insurance companies both as a Missouri official and a class-action litigator. He’ll become a senior adviser to Sebelius.

The office will become part of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, and will be managed by Marilyn Tavenner, deputy administrator of CMS.

http://www.kaiserhealthnews.or…

January 5, 2011.   Blue Shield of CA seeks rate increases of up to 59% for customers by March 1st. They blame costs of hospitals

http://www.latimes.com/health/…

Hospitals treat the un insured when their health descends into the most expensive crisis mode,  and pass the markup, make it up prices along to the insured, while charging the uninsured the highest rates, so they can still have their debts “sold.”

And nothing has changed the basic dynamic of leaving a portion of the population uncovered to act as a price lever on the rest.

Nothing.

A million and a half people filed for bankruptcy last year.  The leading cause is uncontrolled medical debt.

Blue Shield spent $16 million on federal lobbyists in 2010.  The top recipient was “Democrat” There Will Be No Public Option Blanche, the former Sen. Lincoln of Arkansas.  Eric Cantor got $22,500.

http://www.opensecrets.org/org…

They have a PAC, too, for their executives to use.

http://www.campaignmoney.com/p…

There’s more – each of those executives will be making other, individual donations.

But in CA, the real action is at the state level.  How they loved Schwarzenegger, the ex governator.  And the Republicans. And the Democrats.  Last year’s money bomb:

http://cal-access.ss.ca.gov/Ca…

http://cal-access.ss.ca.gov/Ca…

most complete list of donations in 2009 – 2010 election cycle:

http://cal-access.ss.ca.gov/Ca…

Poor Jerry Brown only got $2,500 out of all of that ?  

 

Bloggers Behaving Badly: Rayne at FireDogLake.com, Part Deux

And the attacks on the left by the so-called left just keep on happening.  Rayne is at it again, this time using analysis of the failure of Howard Dean’s organizational methods as cover for once again insulting the left.

Right off the bat, Rayne dismisses the left as being “poorly informed” about how and why the Democrat Party victories of 2006 and 2008 have gone once again to the very likely prospect of huge losses in 2010.

For the last several weeks there’s been an increasing number of posts which bash all manner of Democrats, from the president to the party itself and plead for alternatives. The anger driving this bashing is understandable since the country’s economy has floundered and promises made and values shared haven’t been kept under a Democratic president with a Democratic majority in Congress.

The anger also stems from disillusionment; after the great double-emotional high of the first person of color and Democrat winning the White House in 2008, there was the expectation that winning could continue, sustained in terms of legislative initiatives.

But unfortunately, much of this anger is poorly informed. There’s backstory which explains in part why we are here today.  . . .

I find it difficult to believe that, as someone who regularly posts on a blog that goes out of its way to inform its readers about what the far right in the Democrat Party does on a daily basis, Rayne would think the left is “poorly informed” about how and why we’ve gone from victory over the GOP to facing a repeat of ’94.

Core liberal values

Freedom of (and from) religion is a core liberal value.  There are good reasons why core liberal values are fundamentally American values embodied in our Constitution deriving directly from Enlightenment philosophy.  The following anti-rational, blindly racist and stupidly insular sentiment (emotional outburst?) common to current right wing “thinking” is decidedly anti- or counter-Enlightenment in its expression on so many levels as to be automatically revolting to a modern, liberal mind:

“Everything I ever needed to know about Islam I learned on 9/11”

Photobucket

Liberalism defines modernity.  The exact specification of liberalism will vary between taxonomists, but some very general themes emerge from a period of time designated as the Enlightenment.

DADT: Dr Dean & Choi @ Today’s WH Protest, More Arrests

This was so totally fitting for today, as the President gave a short on details and lackluster speech down in Louisiana, during day 12 of the BP Deepwater Horizon oil spill blowout.  

SIX ARRESTED AT WHITE HOUSE PROTEST  5/2/2010 The Advocate

http://www.advocate.com/News/D…


Choi, who has twice been arrested after handcuffing himself to the White House gates and has now been court ordered not to enter a certain perimeter around the White House, was joined by a handful of other speakers, including former Vermont governor and Democratic National Committee chairman Howard Dean, Servicemembers United executive director Alex Nicholson, and Servicemembers Legal Defense Network executive director Aubrey Sarvis.

The protest came on the heels of a letter leaked late Friday afternoon in which Department of Defense secretary Robert Gates urged House Armed Services Committee chairman Ike Skelton “in the strongest possible terms” to delay legislative action on repeal until the Pentagon completes its assessment of how to implement repeal.

Nader on Health Care and Howard Dean

PhotobucketJust the other day, I declared my liberation from politics and talk radio and blogs that promote the party line.   With this liberation came a renewed interest in the only man outside the system, Ralph Nader.

Today, I got this email from him on health care.  It contained the usual stuff that we all know.  The bill is corporate welfare and was written by the health care corporations.  Many people recognize the Obama spin for the lie it is, and it contains many money quotes from Chris Hedges and others who know that when it smells like a skunk, looks like a skunk, well you know the rest of that.

I have copied and posted the entire email below in case someone wants to donate to the single payer cause; but there is one short paragraph on Howard Dean in the email that caught my attention.  I bolded it because I think it is important.  Apparently Howard Dean and Bernie Sanders got their pound of flesh for their support shutting up.  Bernie got clinics for the people, and Dean got – well read it for yourself.  

How To Save Health Reform?

Markos Moulitsas (DKos) is now calling progressive Congressman Dennis Kucinichreprehensible” for having the strength of integrity and character to refuse to agree to this hollowed-out, Insurance-Monopoly, bailout-bill (unlike Barack Obama and the Democratic Leadership).   Link:  Markos attacks the progressive Congressman.

Gee, isn’t that what we all wanted from Democrats? The strength not to just cave in all the time like scared sheep, and actually stand up for something? (unlike Markos himself apparently).

Even as we speak, both Howard Dean and Alan Grayson have now also ramped-up the rhetoric for introducing some type of Medicare Buy In (a.k.a. “public option”) as a reconcilliation fix for the existing corrupt Health Care Bill. Alan Grayson has even formally proposed a “public option act” H.R. 4789.

In reality, Obama and Rahm Emanuel really don’t want there to be any “fixes” of any consequence made to their happy Insurance Monopoly bill.  And without Presidential leadership and support, any reconcilliation efforts will quickly fail, and may never even see any formal debate or consideration (as the Democratic Leadership always happily succumbs to the pressures exerted by Rahm Emanuel and Obama — like yet another massive War Funding bill).

Perhaps the best thing that could happen here would be that the Obama Health Care Bill falls short by a vote or two in the House. At that point, instead of a $70 Billion Bailout to Insurance Fat Cats, and IRS fees for defenseless U.S. citizens, the whole process would then have to be rethought.

In the event of Obama and Rahm having failed to shove a Insurance Monopoly bill down our throats, perhaps then a set of individual, stand-alone bills could be brought forward to make some real progress on Health Care Reform. For example:

  • A stand alone bill to end the denial of care based on “pre-existing conditions” (even many GOP members support this provision).
  • An expansion of Medicare, or Medicare-Buy-In, passed through the reconcilliation process.
  • A repeal of the existing Anti-Trust rules that protects the Insurance Monopoly.
  • Funding for local, cost-effective Health Care Clinics.
  • How about a bill to actually allow the reimportation of cheaper generic drugs from Canada? (Rahm and Obama would be pissed)

The Democratic talking-point here that the Obama’s sell-out bill is “the only way” to ever make forward progress on Health Care, is just like the same faulty logic that we heard before with the crooked Goldman Sachs/Wall-Street bailouts (who by the way are now making big profits, and the CEOs are getting huge bonuses — with that money that we gave them).

Lies don’t equal reform.

And neither does a corrupt system of bailouts, and mandates in the service of a Monopoly.

[VIDEO] Dean, Billionaires for Wealthcare, and a Public Option Superstar…

Cross-posted from Sum of Change

Today I dropped in on the health care rally in DC. Everyone who’s anyone was there (not literally, but it certainly felt that way when I was there).

Howard Dean was there. We got to ask him if he thinks the Democratic leadership is prepared to move forward without Republicans and if he agrees with the statement that House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer made at the health care summit that everyone shares the same goal of covering all Americans:

video below the fold…

Howard Dean: “People who blame others are losers”

Crossposted at Daily Kos

    Before the circular firing squad slash blame game begins, let’s get this straight right the fuck now.

    Former DNC Chair Howard Dean told Rachel Maddow on MSNBC moments ago that Democrats aren’t necessarily to blame for what seems like a likely loss in today’s special senate election in Massachusetts.

    “I certainly don’t think it’s a referendum on President Obama,” Dean said.

~snip~

    “This is not the time for pointing the blame.”

    People who blame others are losers. If you want to win elections, you stop blaming and get to work.

talkingpointsmemo.com

    So let’s get this straight, Coakley lost, she lost for reasons all of her own. I am not really interested in the blame game. I am interested in learning from this experience so that Progressives don’t make the same mistakes the next time.

    Anyone who is interested in winning elections is more than welcome to join me below the fold.

FDR warned about Economic Royalists — Looks like he’s STILL RIGHT!

Economic Royalists:

President Franklin D. Roosevelt, in his speech accepting the Democratic nomination for a second term, delivered at Philadelphia on 27 June 1936, said, “The economic royalists complain that we seek to overthrow the institutions of America. What they really complain of is that we seek to take away their power. Our allegiance to American institutions requires the overthrow of this kind of power.”

(emphasis added)

http://www.answers.com/topic/e…

How about a “Case Study” using a recent history of their HandiWork … and their apparent Victory — AGAIN!

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