Mitt Romney often looks as if he is uncomfortable around regular, everyday people. His grins tend to resemble that of a grimace. What would happen if a voter gave him a big bear hug, and swept him from his feet???
This week Alexandra Pelosi debuted a new video on Real Time with Bill Maher. This video was meant to give contrast to last week’s video which showed Pelosi in Mississippi speaking with lower income conservatives. Many conservatives expressed outrage that Pelosi and Maher would “cherry pick” conservatives in order to show the party in the most negative light possible. Personally, I think that the party does that on its own, with or without the video… but, that’s another story altogether.
Before showing last week’s video, Maher promised that he would send Pelosi into the inner city to get the “other side’s” view. Last night, he kept his promise of a new video and showed the audience Pelosi’s latest installment. Instead of going to the inner city, however, she just went right across the street, from her residence, to the Welfare office where she interviewed several black men and one white woman. All were seeking government assistance in one form or another. One guy said he didn’t know what he was applying for, he just wanted whatever he could get. Another guy was asked why he was voting for President Obama and he said because he’s black, which contrasts the white conservative who said that he didn’t like President Obama because he is a “half-breed.”
All in all, this week’s video showed people who voted democrat because of their belief that they will get handouts if they do, again contrasting the conservatives who say that they would rather go without than have help. I am sure that the video outraged many liberals, but we all know that these people exists on both sides. The problem tends to come in when we try to paint an ENTIRE party with the same brush based upon the most negative, ignorant elements that exists within each party. This puts everyone on the defensive and we spend more time fighting stereotypes than being productive. (Which, I imagine, is by design.) I frequently post on the Huffington Post with my avatar showing me as a black woman, and while I have never once signed up for any government assistance programs and have never been on food stamps, people have implied that I am only a democrat because I want handouts. I don’t want handouts because I haven’t needed them, but I DO like the idea of a safety net considering the state of the economy.
In the end, the questions we have to ask are: Are all lower income conservatives racists who will not support a black president? No, but many are. Are all lower income democrats looking for a handout? No, but many are. That is what the videos showed, that these elements do exist and these people are voters. (Of course, many conservatives also accept handouts, but don’t acknowledge it as a handout… but, again, that’s another story.)
While I support the IDEA of what Maher and Pelosi have been trying to accomplish, I feel as if they didn’t go far enough to create context. In the case of this week’s video, I also do not believe that they did an adequate job of giving an exact contrast to the Mississippi voters that they interviewed. In MS, you clearly saw them speak with working class people, who we honestly do not know whether or not they accept any form of government assistance, or not. Considering that at least 40 percent of the people who receive food stamps live in households with at least one wage earner, that is a question that needed to be asked given this week’s trip to the welfare office in NY. Since Pelosi didn’t interview all food stamp recipients last week, this week’s video didn’t make sense in context.
Another place the video missed is when showing the doorman lament about those at the welfare office not having a job. In context, you would need to consider the jobless rate and whether or not jobs are available for those able bodied individuals. And you would have to also consider whether or not ALL of those going to the office aren’t working, as pointed out above. In the end, however, the men didn’t act as if they had any interest whatsoever in actually working. One man said he didn’t want a job, but a career… As if those are any easier to get.
Pelosi made a good point when referencing that we spend 700 billion on defense, in comparison to the 70 billion spent on government assistance programs. I also think she made a good point when she referenced the billions given out in corporate welfare. These are things that she should have discussed with the anti-handout crowd in MS. Republicans, that they vote for, support corporate welfare while stating that poor people don’t deserve any help. It would have been interesting to hear their take on that.
After it was all said and done, I was left feeling as if Ms. Pelosi really could have done a better job. The first video seemed as if she took the time out to travel through MS to find different people to speak with. (Although conservatives will argue that they were all the same TYPE of people.) The second one seemed as if it was hastily thrown together, and frankly, lazy. She only made one stop and it was to speak only with people looking for a handout.
Maher and Pelosi have managed to piss people off, showing those of whom both sides would rather keep buried, out of sight and out of mind. My issue with the video is completely different, however. I don’t mind that these people were unearthed, only that the videos lacked depth and context. As I’ve already said, I support the idea of what they did, so I am not offended… I imagine many black people will be because they may feel as if Maher and Pelosi are purposely playing into the stereotype that black people want handouts. Which is the argument that the right is making, only it’s for their side. So, there you have it. Something people on the left and right can come together on. And they said it couldn’t be done!
In closing, am I the only one amused by the fact that the welfare office had a DOORMAN? Really?
As posted by Outlandish, a user on the Huffington Post:
Republican base belief system.
You have to believe you know what women want but deprive them of the right to choice.
You have to believe that a man who has no core belief system is one of you because he described himself as a severe conservative.
You have to believe that those privileged from birth achieve success all
On their own!
You have to believe that wars are good so long as the rich make money out of them.
You have to believe that tax cuts for the wealthiest creates jobs and subsidies to job exporters are vital for America’s future.
You have to be against government programs, but expect your Social
Security checks on time.
You have to believe that government should stay out of people’s lives, yet
You want government to regulate only same-gender marriages, what a woman
Does with her uterus, and what your official language should be.
You have to believe that pollution is OK so long as it makes a profit.
You have to believe in prayer in schools, as long as you don’t pray to
Allah or Buddha!
You have to believe that only your own teenagers are virgins and het ro.
You have to believe that a woman cannot be trusted with decisions about
Her own body, but that large multi-national corporation should have no
Regulation or interference whatsoever!
You love Jesus and Jesus loves you and, by the way, Jesus shares your
disdain of LGBT’s and Obama!
You have to believe that society is color-blind and growing up black in
America doesn’t diminish your opportunities, but you wouldn’t vote for a
You have to believe it is wise to keep contraceptives out of schools, because we
All know if teenagers don’t have access they won’t get pregnant.
You have to believe that a man can dictate what women’s’ rights should be.
You have to believe that the ACLU is bad because they defend the
Constitution, while the NRA is good because they defend 1 section of the Constitution.
You have to believe that socialism hasn’t worked anywhere, and that
The Nordic block and Australia don’t exist.
You have to believe that the federal government doesn’t have the right to mandate healthcare.
But states have the right to disenfranchise voters.
Facts and Palin just don’t mix.
Read the Article at HuffingtonPost
::impersonates Tina Fey impersonating Sarah Palin::
There goes the LAME STREAM MEDIA again and their fact checking and using the words that come out of my mouth to prove that I haven’t a clue of what I’m talking about. The important thing here is not that my data is, in fact wrong, it’s that the American people get that I’m a real person, just like they are; and, also, too, Mister Fancy Elitist_Pants Wall Street Journal Guy with your fat_juicy steaks and succulant (succulent) lobsters every night for dinner, real people like me notice when our food prices rise 0.011111% from the previous year. Perhaps that’s not a lot where YOU live, but I absolutely refudiate and refuke (rebuke) everything that passes through your educated lips as I am a TRUE American scraping by like everyone else and if it wasn’t for the hundreds of thousands of dollars I make at speaking arrangements I would be on the streets, in line for free government cheese and chicken broth, waiting for retirement age so that I could live off of Medicare and Social Security.
The LSM just don’t get it!
OK, I could have taken a half a second to come up with a more original title for this post, but honestly, I’m fighting the Ambien to get this out. So work with me.
I had to post a blog today just to note history, for myself. I want to record my thoughts and observances… as someone who has only been following this “debate” from afar for the last month or so. Politics burn me out. I get too wrapped up in it and there are times that I have to step back for my own personal sanity. With that said…
Let’s face it. The health care debate has been a heated one from the start. But as we got closer to actually PASSING health care reform, things reached a fever pitch, to say the least. One thing that, those of us who actually have functioning brain cells, realize is that dramatic change does not come without a big fight. And a fight it has been….
As a 30 year old woman who did not have to live through the civil rights movement, it’s a tad shocking to see this kind of ugliness. It’s 2010. For a good 2 years, I’ve been stating that the republican party needed to get together and condemn the blatant fear-mongering, and the racism, bigotry and threats of bodily harm from those on the fringe. This is something that has been escalating since the 2008 election year; yet the GOP remains silent.
I have not heard the GOP, as a whole, come out and state that their constituents behavior has been inappropriate. Why not call for REAL conservatives to come forth with their ideas and ideology? Without the side show circus of placards with President Obama depicted as Hitler (because we all know that Hitler was all about making sure people had health care) or Stalin or Mao or whatever the flavor of the day.
Hold that thought – I’ll get back to that in a bit, but I want to touch on the mention of the Civil Rights movement above, I want to add this quote from Newt Gingrich – so that I won’t forget:
Newt Gingrich outlined the Republican strategy going forward, saying that the Democrats “will have destroyed their party much as Lyndon Johnson shattered the Democratic Party for forty years” by signing civil rights into law.
With that in mind, I just have to ask:
- Where were the Conservative leaders when their constituents were outside calling Barney Frank a Faggot?
- Where was the Conservative Leadership when Rep. Emanuel Cleaver was spat upon, by their constituents?
- Why is the GOP also MIA when Rep. John Lewis is called a nigger?
- Where was Michael Steele as democrat offices, across the country, were being vandalized?
Crystal Lee Sutton, whose courageous efforts organizing Southern textile mills inspired the award-winning 1979 film “Norma Rae,” passed away on Friday after a long battle with brain cancer. Sutton’s story is particularly tragic because after fighting her whole life for rights of working Americans, her health insurance wouldn’t cover the medications she needed:
She went two months without possible life-saving medications because her insurance wouldn’t cover it, another example of abusing the working poor, she said.
“How in the world can it take so long to find out (whether they would cover the medicine or not) when it could be a matter of life or death,” she said. “It is almost like, in a way, committing murder.”
Although Sutton eventually received the medication, the cancer had already taken a toll on her.
More from ThinkProgress:
NOTE: This is the first installment of our series — Meet Your Insurance Company Executive: An Interview with Wendell Potter.
Yesterday, ThinkProgress talked with Wendell Potter, Cigna Health Care’s former Communication Director, about a common and widespread practice among insurance companies called “rescission.” As the former Cigna executive explains, rescission is the insurance industry practice of finding reasons — even reasons as flimsy as typos on your enrollment form — to cancel your coverage when you get sick. According to Potter, insurance companies are saving billions by rescinding coverage from Americans who purchase individual insurance:
POTTER: If they determine that you might have left out something that they consider pertinent on your application and might have indicated that you would have had some illness or might get an illness down the road, and you’ve been getting treatment and submitting claims to your insurance company, they will go back and look at that application and they will often rescind or cancel your policy even if you’ve been paying your premiums on-time, every month, for years. You will be left holding the bag with the responsibility of paying all of your medical care when insurance companies do this. They’ve been doing it for many years and saving billions of dollars as a result of this.
The Washington Post recently highlighted other examples of rescission:
Woman Lost Her Home Because Coverage Was Canceled For Condition She Didn’t Have. “For Teresa Dietrich, it was fibroids. The Northern California real estate agent was left to pay $19,000 after Blue Cross said she did not disclose a diagnosis of the benign uterine tumors. But Dietrich said the doctor who had written ‘fibroids’ on her medical record never mentioned his suspicions to her. The bills destroyed her credit and cost her her home – and, in a comically cruel twist, the surgery proved the doctor was wrong. ‘They said I had a condition I didn’t even have,’ Dietrich said. ‘And they canceled me.’”
Woman Saddled With $25,000 Debt For Not Disclosing Condition She Didn’t Know She Had. “The untimely disappearance of Sally Marrari’s medical coverage goes a long way toward explaining why insurance companies are cast as the villain in the health-care reform drama. ‘They said I never mentioned I had a back problem,’ said Marrari, 52, whose coverage with Blue Cross was abruptly canceled in 2006 after a thyroid disorder, fluid in the heart and lupus were diagnosed. That left the Los Angeles woman with $25,000 in medical bills and the stigma of the company’s claim that she had committed fraud by not listing on a health questionnaire ‘preexisting conditions’ Marrari said she did not know she had.’”
Woman Denied Coverage For Gall Bladder Surgery Because Of Husband’s High Cholesterol. Washington Post: “In a pending case, Blue Shield searched in vain for an inconsistency in the health records of the wife of a dairy farmer after she filed a claim for emergency gallbladder surgery, according to attorneys for the family. Turning to her husband’s questionnaire, the company discovered he had not mentioned his high cholesterol and dropped them both. Blue Shield officials said they would not comment on a pending case.”
Rescission is widespread – an investigation by the House Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations found that three insurance companies alone (WellPoint, UnitedHealth and Assurant) cancelled more than 20,000 policies in the last five years.
Yes America, it’s true. The media is giving power to the most ignorant segment of our country. Of course, the first clue that these people were not the brightest bulbs in the chandelier is when they decided to call themselves “Teabaggers.” While they may be a great source of entertainment for those of us who have more than two brain cells to bump together, the topic of health care is an important one. These people are grossly uninformed, misinformed, and generally motivated by their fear of the unknown. Never once do they consider that perhaps they know so little because they are so overwhelmingly brainless. Oh, and that they refuse to get their news from anywhere other than right-wing propagandists and Fox News – who are bought and paid for by the same corporations that have brought us to the brink of disaster.
They believe that czars are bad, generally because it is an unfamiliar word in their vocabulary. When informed that Reagan also used czars, and that czars were expanded under George W. Bush, the crowd expressed dumbfounded confusion and disbelief. Their level of skepticism increased further as they were educated on the roles of the czars here in America. That they wield no executive power and act as advisers. Not to mention that most of them have been confirmed! Dubiously, one man questioned, “and you know this how?” If Glenn Beck didn’t say it, it must not be true. One woman worried about whether or not they are given land to lord over (like those czars that Caesar had back in “Roman Times.” )
Another deep thinker also contributed to the discussion about czars, stating that, “in Russia, czars are kings. I want people to know that in America, Jesus is king.'” I wish that the guy interviewing her would have said, “many people believe that Jesus was a socialist.” But, he may not have gotten out of there alive.
A man goes on and on about abortions and how black women make up a high percentage of said abortions. But this has nothing to do with race.
A man wielding a wooden cross, typically used for cross burnings by the KKK, states that he had no clue that the rally was going on. He goes on to ask the people around him if they wanted to sign the cross, which already had several signatures. But, this has nothing to do with race.
More mention of President Obama being a Muslim, and not a Christian as he states. But, this has nothing to do with race.
A man holds up a tall sign that proudly states, “Joe Wilson for President.” He changed his mind after he was informed that Joe Wilson actually voted to pay the hospital bills of illegal immigrants that visited the Emergency Room – with taxpayers money.
A man states that there are simply not enough doctors in America for everyone to receive health care. That we would be 200,000 doctors short! When asked what should be done for the millions of Americans who lack coverage, he didn’t have a solution. Especially when there is no solution that would conjure up more doctors. In other words, those without health care, feel free to rot.
A woman states her belief that President Obama is interested in building an army of 2 million people who will be as well armed as the military. She goes on the repeat the false claim, even as she is corrected. I guess she also believes in FEMA Death Camps.
A man states that Hitler wooed all with his fancy words, just like President Obama. Does this mean that all educated men with charisma should be out of the question for the presidency in the future?
A woman whose been in the health care industry 20 years claims that the, “Bury Obamacare with Kennedy” signs are simply “sarcastic.” While another individual goes on to state that the sign was okay, because the Kennedy’s had “done other stuff too,” though he could not think of any of that stuff “off the bat.”
And finally, ignoramuses attending the rally believe that being a communist, fascist, and socialist are all the same thing. Practically interchangeable. To top it off, when further questioned about just WHY they are protesting, most of them can’t come up with an even halfway coherent response.
There are other blatant examples of the overall ignorance of the crowd. All brought together by the hard work of Glenn Beck and Faux News.
These are the people keeping us from having a REAL health care debate. And their “representatives” are allowing it to happen!
At the end of the video, a woman is in a tizzy about how she is frustrated that they aren’t being listened to by the government, as a whole…
God help us if they ever are.
Thursday’s annual Census Bureau report on income, poverty and access to health care-the Bureau’s principal report card on the well-being of average Americans-closes the books on the economic record of George W. Bush.It’s not a record many Republicans are likely to point to with pride.On every major measurement, the Census Bureau report shows that the country lost ground during Bush’s two terms. While Bush was in office, the median household income declined, poverty increased, childhood poverty increased even more, and the number of Americans without health insurance spiked. By contrast, the country’s condition improved on each of those measures during Bill Clinton’s two terms, often substantially.
Let’s see. The economy IMPROVED under a democratic president… The economy TANKED under a republican president. Tsk, tsk, tsk. Where are all those “fiscally responsible” republicans that you Teabaggers are ACHING to put back into power?
Facts are such a pesky little thing, aren’t they?
Surprise, surprise. So, he was for it before he was against it? Joe Wilson’s bridge to no where.
Read the Article at HuffingtonPost
Just how pathetic do you have to inflate numbers to that degree? And if you would lie about that, what else are you lying about? Things that make you go, “mmmm!”