Rush Limbaugh’s white horse prophecy: America is hanging by a thread

I’m wondering if the entire country will soon be channeling Joseph Smith’s supposed white horse prophecy.  Rush Limbaugh led his show today by saying that “America is hanging by a thread.”  Setting aside whether or not this is hyperbole (it certainly is), where did Limbaugh get that particular phrase?  Is it possible he took it from Glenn Beck’s conversation with Orrin Hatch?    The Elders of the Church sure are getting around a lot lately.  Of course, the use of that particular phrase could be pure coincidence — it’s a pretty common image.

Anyway, now is the chance for the majority of Bloggernaclites to gloat about the passage of the health care bill.   Meanwhile, the majority of Latter-day Saints will continue to oppose such measures.  If you’re going to gloat, or even if you’re going to lament that America is hanging by a thread, please be nice.  Your comments are hanging by a thread.

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About Geoff B.

Geoff B graduated from Stanford University (class of 1985) and worked in journalism for several years until about 1992, when he took up his second career in telecommunications sales. He has held many callings in the Church, but his favorite calling is father and husband. Geoff is active in martial arts and loves hiking and skiing. Geoff has five children and lives in Colorado.

99 thoughts on “Rush Limbaugh’s white horse prophecy: America is hanging by a thread

  1. Well the healthcare reform is ridiculous and I do hope many of the states planning on fighting it as Unconstitutional do so. I guess we`ll see fewer Canadians coming over for health care since our system will be as messed up as theirs soon enough if the President has his way. As for Rush…he is a sensationalist and always has been. Make it big is how he broadcasts not matter what topic it is. That`s just Rush!

  2. No gloating here, just relief.

    If the vision of America that Rush Limbaugh, et al., promulgate is hanging by a thread, I say let’s send him a pair of scissors to make a clean cut of that thread. His America is filled with hate and fear and greed and selfishness, and the sooner he and it go away, the better.

  3. Ardis, one of the few benefits of the health care bill is that you feel it will be beneficial to you. For that, I am glad because you are one of the nicest bloggers out there. Personally, I feel there would have been other, less expensive ways to resolve it for you, but I’ll feel happy (relieved?) for you because I have to find some positive feelings somewhere. 🙂

  4. Well I’ll tell ya’ll what I am STOKED about…

    I am finally going to “get it” as one of those selfish, racsist, jingoist conservatives!! I’ve had it coming to me for sometime as a Big Corporation operative and Tea Party wacko!

    I am so excited to pay more taxes!! Thank goodness, I mean, saving for my own child’s expenses and a bigger house was selfish and racisit and I’m sure jingoistic in some way! What was I thinking that taking care of myself and my own family and my neighbors in my own way and on my own terms? Government will show me the way.

    I am also happy that last week we found out that the insurance that is offered to us thru DH’s work will be dropped, because it will be cheaper for them to just pay the fine! AWESOME!! I can’t wait to go to the exchange and figure it all out! I’m sure they’ll just add a wing on the DMV to save me time.

    I am sooooooo excited that my parents Medicare and supplemental medicare insurance will be cut and taxed! They worked all those years and should be punished!! After all they did make me ride around in that station wagon all those years!

    I’m also soooooo glad that after all those years of aching to have a baby and being willing to take any unwanted child into my home, that now women who don’t care to have theirs can just kill at will! I mean, who wants to be punished with a baby? Now I can watch more Kardashians and Real Housewives!

    I am beyond words that my state, which already has NO MONEY will have more unfunded mandates to deal with. I really don’t mind driving around, over, under and thru the pot holes. In fact, we’re thinking about just filling them with water this summer and calling them the swimmin’ hole!

    Yes, so great “something” got passed.

    This is so AWESOME, so totally AWESOME!

  5. One little noticed effect of health care reform will be that fast offering funds which have been used to pay doctor and hospital bills can now go to other uses.

    I suspect that some of the brethern were quite pleased to see health care reform pass, though they never will admitt it.

  6. Joyce, I would not be surprised if my company decides to drop health insurance and pay the fine as well. A lot of companies will do this in a high unemployment marketplace (it’s an easy way to cut costs, especially with health insurance premiums certain to skyrocket, and employees don’t have that many alternatives). I am hopeful that the coming wave of companies dropping health insurance will help fuel a repeal of this bill.

    Tossman, Obama is NOT a Marxist, and claiming he is won’t change the minds of a single person out there.

    Universal health care was first proposed by TR, who is a progressive Republican and certainly not a Marxist. It was championed by Truman, who did more to fight Marxism at a crucial time than perhaps any president in American history. Health care has been the primary cause of Democrats at least since Truman’s time and probably before.

    Having said that, I will defend the proposition that Obama is the most left-wing president since FDR. Doesn’t make him a Marxist by a long stretch.

  7. I didn’t listen to Rush today, but as a lover of liberty I find the provision fining Americans who choose not to buy health insurance grossly un-American, and if that’s what Rush meant, I agree. I’ll add there‘s nothing wrong with hyperbole to make a point; Jesus used it all the time. But I’m not sure it’s hyperbole, as however good the intent of this nanny state, it’s just another step towards totalitarianism where the state rules the citizen.

  8. Joyce,

    Seeing conservatives like you freak out over this is making this more precious to me that I ever would have imagined. Thanks for brightening my day.

  9. Geoff, I’m not going to waste time typing my argument here, but there two-part piece that shares my train of thought on this. A quick excerpt:

    “Barack Obama’s father was a Marxist not just because he supported an isolated legislative measure or two, but because he firmly embraced the dogma of wealth redistribution as a guiding principle of his political philosophy. And, it is a principle his son has also fully embraced.”

    Check them out. I’m truly interested in your response. One need not accept Marx’s philosophy in its entirety or implement it the exact way it’s been done in the past to be a Marxist. Here are the links:

  10. Chris H, I’m begging you, there is a difference between insulting an idea or some amorphous person who will never read this blog (ie, Rush Limbaugh) and insulting other commenters, as you do in #11 and #13. Please keep your comments focused on the ideas that you disagree with, not the people.

  11. Tossman, when I went to college I knew professors who were actual Marxists. They favored the actual overthrow of the U.S. government by the proletariat to install a working class utopia. Such ideas are pretty commonly discussed on many college campuses.

    Guilt by association, which is the primary argument of the piece you link, simply doesn’t work unless you espouse such ideas and want to implement some of them yourself. I think you could make a strong argument that Obama is sympathetic to social democratic ideas and favors making the United States more like European social democracy. But calling him a Marxist is so far from what Marxism actually is that I have to agree with Biden that it really isn’t even worth discussing.

  12. Chris H, on this blog, we avoid ad hominems aimed at bloggers and other commenters. Concentrate on the ideas, not the people espousing them.

  13. Tossman, Although Marx had other ideas of considerable influence, the idea that he is infamous for is his advocacy of _violent_ revolution. By convention, these days no person or political movement these days is considered Marxist unless it advocates violent revolution in favor of socialist ends, whether it its home country or in that of others.

    So while Obama may be sympathetic to some Marxist leaders and movements, which would be understandable for nearly any person of a leftist inclination, he has certainly not shown any serious indication that he personally advocates such measures, and has indicated on multiple occasions that he does not. If he is a socialist, he is a democratic socialist, not a Marxist.

  14. I don’t like this bill and I really don’t like the Canadian styled system the Democrats want. However I do think medical reform is drastically needed and think it shameful that the very people who should have been for medicare reform were the ones scare mongering over any cut. I think this whole obstructionist approach Republicans had over health care reform was a mistake. They put political opportunism above getting a bill that would have been much better. (Divorcing health care from work, for instance) Given how similar Romney’s own statements on health care are to what got passed it’s hard to see it as much beyond opportunism.

    That said, now that it passed I think it’ll ultimately be better for Republicans. Now if I just had any faith they’d reform themselves to worry as much about actually running the country as in getting elected. I yearn for the pre George W days.

  15. Hmmm, nobody is getting much out of my Rush Limbaugh/white horse prophecy connection. Is it too much of a stretch to think that the whole “hanging by a thread” terminology is becoming more commonplace?

  16. Clark, I have to disagree with your #22 in the sense that Obama and the Dems made it clear they were not going to take the path that Republicans wanted. There really were two separate paths — one was the Dem bill and the other was what you and I both favor, which is to de-link insurance from employment and make it portable (the McCain and Paul Ryan plan). You can’t have both of them. It’s kind of like saying Dems and Ron Paul were obstructionist for voting against the Iraq war. No, they weren’t obstructionist — you are either for the war or against it. You can’t be on both sides of that issue (even though John Kerry tried).

    So, the Republican position was to try to kill this bill to get to a bill they favored. That’s not being obstructionist — that’s being principled and actually sticking to what you believe.

  17. Joyce, as always, I like your style. Finally someone more sarcastic than myself.

    As one of the great unwashed who this bill is about; I agree with Clark. We needed something, just not this.

    This bill makes me nervous that government bureaucrats will have their fingers in our health- pie making it dirtier than it already is. My IRS fight is what I am afraid will become the norm, only not money but more importantly our health/lives. For example, the IRS will not speak to me, only Mike, who is dead. They know he is dead, but the case is with Mike not me, so they put a levy on my house, but will not speak to me, only MIke. Stuff like this keeps me up at night.

    Geoff I agree with you. Limbaugh- WHP has conspiracy written all over it. Rush has lots of LDS fans and this is a case of either pandering to us (conservative LDS) or inadvertently using one of our own legends/terms. Either way it has the potential of further whipping us all into a frenzy.

  18. Do you really think that Obama is going to come straight out and let the American people know that he is a marxist, or a communist? I think not, stop drinking the koolaid and believing everything that liar says. He is showing his true colors through his policy and the way he goes about getting it done (chicago style). I’m not a crazy conservative either, I just don’t believe in corruption and that goes for any administration. My problem is that you keep defending a man who clearly isn’t what he claimed to be. If you like him so much, perhaps you’re a marxist. Just own it and stop trying to make others think that this man is something he’s not. Be honest with yourselves, it’s pretty obvious to the majority that he’s more than far left. Honestly, I really don’t get how some of you guys are Mormon. Tell me, cause it doesn’t make sense. I thought we believed in agency and free will, this marxist stuff sounds more like satan’s idea.

  19. All the hysterical wailing and gnashing of teeth is a little hilarious. Even Mitt Romney is getting in on the act, accusing Obama of “betraying his oath” because tomorrow he will sign into law provisions very like what Romney himself signed on a state level only a few years ago.

    The discussion could benefit from a bit of perspective. Far from being a government takeover, the bill is really quite centrist and modest:

    Although it has many flaws and much more will have to be done in the future in the way of further reforms, thanks to this bill we live in a more civilized country, a big improvement from the unsustainable and unjust status quo.

    In any case, I just sent a contribution to Betsy Markey, among others.

  20. I thought once this was over I would so miss the hyperbole endemic to the righteous, Joyce. Not so, I see. I am so naive. I still see the all-caps tactic, the blatant and cutting sarcasm, the almighty exclamation point. I also see the way greed works in free enterprise — doing whatever it takes to make a buck, the excessive use of o’s and other vowels, and the blatant murder of those unborn fetuses that haven’t even been and maybe never will be conceived and even if they were aren’t in danger.

    Nope, the entertainment continues on and on, into the eternities, especially here in Utah where the masses usually are so allied against the unholy notion of medical malpractice lawsuits — no matter how deserving a case may be — and such people will now humbly unite and pledge to sue that evil, greedy, corrupt U.S. government.

    Keep up the great entertainment. Glenn Beck can’t be on 24/7.

  21. Just to follow up on what Bill said…

    I did some googling today to see what the atmosphere was like in 1935 when FDR signed the Social Security act. I found out that people opposed Social Security on the following grounds:

    1. It would create new taxes. (this is true, social security was the beginning of payroll taxes.)

    2. It would weaken the economy and cause unemployment. (maybe true. Some economists blame the recession of 1937 on the social security act.)

    3. It was a good idea but the country just couldn’t afford it. Remember, this was in the depression.

    4. It was an unconstitutional power grab on the part of the executive.

    Do those objections sound familiar? I realized that it really didn’t matter if any of those things were true. Some of them obviously are, but so what? Social Security still presents us with some real challenges, but do any of us want to go back to a time when senior citizens and disabled people didn’t have social security? Thirty years from now people will be shaking their heads at us incredulously and asking if we were really serious about all the paranoia. Every other industrialized country and even many undeveloped countries manage to do this. I have great confidence that America will succeed.

    Rush ought to hit the trail for Costa Rica as he promised, where he can get decent health care coverage for under $20.00/month. Perhaps they can help him with his thumb-sucking and bed-wetting problems, it is obvious that the private sector in the U.S. hasn’t done him any good.

  22. And Geoff, I want to offer one correction to the original post. You claim that most latter-day saints oppose such measures. That is most likely true of LDS people in the U.S., but as you know, U.S. Mormons are now in the minority. I think it is likely that a majority of LDS in Europe, Asia, Canada, Latin America and Australia are very much in favor of their health care arrangements in their respective countries and simply cannot understand what all the hoopla is about. And their understanding of agency and free will is just as valid as Hillary Harrison’s.

  23. And one more interesting angle for LDS people to consider.

    If U.S. conservatives succeed at making the Health Care bill the focus of the elections in November 2010 and 2012, that would be very bad news for Mitt, given that he is so closely associated with health care reform in Massachusetts when he was guv. If the GOP makes health care reform the main issue, Mitt is toast. So that leaves us with the choice of Huckabee or Palin.

    No thanks.

  24. So that leaves us with the choice of Huckabee or Palin.

    That is a little premature, don’t you think? I don’t think Palin has the slightest chance of being the 2012 Republican nominee. I don’t think she has a particularly good chance of being the Republican nominee, ever.

    Huckabee probably has a reasonable chance. What about Ryan, Pawlenty, Santorum, Jindal, or Thune?

  25. Divorcing health care from work, for instance

    Much better, yes. Politically possible in the near future, no. The best short term way to ameliorate the third party payer problem is to transfer the tax deduction for health care from employers to individuals.

    Then the employer based health benefits can survive on their own merits, without an artificial subsidy. Of course, politically possible or not, the most effective way to control health care costs would be to remove the tax deductibility of health care _completely_.

    As far as the role for government is concerned, I can see definite benefit in government involvement in catastrophic coverage. However, I think involvement in non-catastrophic everyday coverage is going to make the looming health care expense crisis worse rather than better, and drive premiums way up in the meantime. Personally, I would rather not exchange the present rates or wait times in Utah for those in Massachusetts.

  26. Geoff, I had Marxist professors in college too- card-carrying, avowed Marxists. Most openly called themselves Marxists, and none of them advocated the violent overthrow of the government.

    Do we really define a philosophy by the means rather than the end? To me, Marxism has always centered on class warfare (of the sociopolitical variety) and the redistribution of wealth.

    If I can allude to what started this debate (another comment thread where we discussed Glenn Beck’s accusations of Marxism), Mr. Beck stipulates that rather than violent overthrow, Obama seeks the same end, but via sociopolitical evolution. If you listen to more than just the soundbytes, you’d be very familiar with that stipulation. The end is the same, the means different. To claim so vehemently that Obama is not a Marxist is to dismiss how much of the philosophy he actually embraces.

  27. Hillary,

    I am trying to decide if I should be embarrassed or angry at your suggestion that policy enacgted by a duly elected congress is somehow the plan of Satan.

    Here’s how I can be a Mormon: I honor my covenants and I hold a currect temple recommend, the quilifications for which do not ask me any question regarding my political affiliation.

    Joyce, can you explain the “kill at will” comment? Seems to me the legality of abortion is not changed in this bill. Or did I miss that?

  28. Bill, a contribution to Betsy Markey, in my district? That’s a low blow! The good news for me is that she doesn’t have a chance. You’re throwing good money after bad.

    Mark, I think there was once a time you called yourself a conservative. If you favor this health care bill, there is no way you can possibly continue to call yourself this, which may be neither here nor there, but is reality. Your comparisons to Social Security are valid, but I deny your conclusion that 30 years from now people will be wondering what the fuss was about. When I look back at the 1930s, I think, “too bad government didn’t make ways to control the costs of Social Security, such as making part of the investments in the private market or planning for future generations when people would have fewer children. Now, the system is nearly bankrupt and nobody has the political will to deal with it.” Thirty years from now many people will be looking at this health insurance bill (if it is not repealed) and wondering, “how was that generation so irresponsble as to institute a new entitlement when the yearly deficit was $1.5 trillion-plus?”

    Mark Brown, as for your international comparison, it may be valid in other cases but is simply not relevant for this discussion. Would you like to comment on Latter-day Saints’ attitudes towards health insurance privatization in Brazil? I wouldn’t and I lived there for 4 years, and the reason is that the systems are so different that there is no basis for comparison. Would the majority of Latter-day Saints worldwide favor the health care bill? I would argue that they have no way of knowing its various complexities.

    Mark Brown, as for your #31, those types of comments are not appropriate for this site. Again, if you’re going to make a comment keep it based on ideas, not ad hominems. I agree with your #33, however. If health care repeal is the central issue of the 2010 and 2012 campaigns, Mitt Romney is toast, and probably should be. Romneycare in Massachusetts is a disaster, and he is at least partly to blame for it, unfortunately.

  29. Walt Eddy, your #29 is inappropriate for this site. Last warning, folks. Discuss ideas or your comments will be deleted.

  30. Mark B @10.06:

    “I think it is likely that a majority of LDS in Europe, Asia, Canada, Latin America and Australia are very much in favor of their health care arrangements in their respective countries and simply cannot understand what all the hoopla is about. And their understanding of agency and free will is just as valid as Hillary Harrison’s”.

    You got that one right, Mark. We’re sitting here watching the hate and vitriol, with jaws a-dropping. It’s completely baffling to me that any decent human being would not want to pay into a joint fund to assist all their fellow citizens, safe in the knowledge it’s there if we need it. Fully state funded insurance is much cheaper than paying private insurance companies- I pay less for my national insurance (which includes all health appointments and treatments, as well as unemployment cover) than I pay in tithing.

    A comment earlier threw me too, someone commented that at last now people wouldn’t have to use fast offering to pay for doctors or medical treatment. I’d never realised that happened. Another reason for members outside the US to welcome the reforms; as long as the US is spending so much on military exploits, there can be no justification for claiming healthcare is unaffordable.

  31. Anne, do you think it is appropriate and responsible for the United States to institute another entitlement when deficits are at $1.5 trillion? I’m not sure you have considered the worldwide affects on your country and others of a complete bankruptcy of the U.S. financial system. I agree with you on our military exploits — we have a responsbility to ourselves and the world to get spending down, way down, but again, two wrongs (excessive spending on the military AND a new entitlement) don’t make a right.

    Clark, if you are still reading this, regarding your #22, I would urge you to read this:

  32. Yes, Anne. Didn’t you know that deficits trump all other moral considerations?

    Mark Brown: You obviously not a real conservative. Welcome to the darkside.

  33. Holy crap Geoff. Hillary questions how people can even be Mormons and calls this Satan’s plan, I laugh about it and you think I’M making personal attacks?

    A big part of the reason I no longer identify myself as a conservative is because I’m so embarrassed by the ridiculous nature of the arguments being made on conservatism’s behalf. When you are riding the conservative bus and many of the people around sound crazy, it is safe to conclude that you are probably on the bus to Crazytown. See various comments on this current thread for confirmation of that assertion. I won’t identify them by number because I don’t want to be accused of making ad hominem attacks, but believe me, every normal person on earth who reads this can readily see what I am talking about.

  34. Also, Geoff–I think your swipe at “the majority of Bloggernaclites” was gratuitous. I haven’t seen a single post about healthcare, and honestly, despite having been hanging around for about as long as anybody, I couldn’t tell you where most ‘Naclites lean politically. There are theologically conservative political liberals, theologically liberal political conservatives, and a range of devotional practice that seems disconnected from either. To suggest, even obliquely, that people who disagree with your position on healthcare are in opposition to “the majority of Saints” is beneath you.

  35. Mark Brown, “normal” is pretty subjective. We all hear these kinds of comments all the time. I don’t agree with them and have pointed that out pretty clearly, but you may find that your vision of “normal” is pretty narrow.

    Kristine, thanks for bringing that up. So, can we now count on you to vote for Mitt? 🙂

    In any case, my opposition to Romneycare is based on the following:

    To sum up, premiums continue to skyrocket and the plan is unsustainable in the long-term and relies on federal aid to remain solvent. Who is going to bail out the federal government when Obamacare’s costs continue to skyrocket in similar fashion?

  36. Kristine, no reason to get worked up about a throw-away line. What has been the position of the majority of commenters on this thread so far? I rest my case.

  37. Geoff, you might want to double-check the tally of commenters pro- and anti- before you rest your case.

    Does it occur to you that maybe, just maybe, Tim Cahill’s evaluation is influenced by his current political ambitions?

  38. Also, you really want me to take an article based on a Rasmussen poll seriously??

  39. Hmmm, I guess my case depends on total commenters or total comments. Ah, to be a lawyer!

    All politicians are influenced by their political amibitions, but I still think his points are valid.

  40. I’m interested in this new animus toward Rasmussen these days. Obama supporters loved Rasmussen just 18 months ago, because Rasmussen polls accurately reflected the country’s position on our new president. What changed? This is not a snarky question, I’m truly interested.

  41. I suppose national health care had to eventually come to pass. I just don’t like a lot of stuff in this bill. When several billions of dollars had to be used as bribes, just so DEMOCRATS would vote for it, you KNOW there’s a lot of bad stuff in it! 😉

    That said, I mostly worry about the unfunded mandates of Medicare/Medicaid that still remain, as well as any new ones that this health care bill creates. Are we getting health care, only to bankrupt the government before our children and grandchildren get a chance to vote?

  42. I’m sorry if I offended any of you out there with my satan reference, but I really don’t understand it. I don’t understand how you can claim to live by a certain standard on one hand and then when it comes to politics, throw it away and say now I have another set of standards. Mostly I’m talking about abortion and gay marraige. I know the church doesn’t ask you how conservative you are, but I thought those were just principals that we as mormons upheld. It makes no sense, you want to force me to give my money to others to have health insurance, that just irritates me. Besides, the church doesn’t force us to do anything. Why should the government make the decision for me? My husband and I worked our butts off to get through school just to turn around and pay high taxes for others who are unwilling to do so. I live in an area of the country where it’s not just, oh, he’s too old or too sick, it’s more about sitting on your can and waiting for your welfare check. I didn’t work hard for someone else, do you see the dilema? I have no problem being charitable, but I’m not going to be forced by my government to do so. I also don’t understand how you don’t see the problem of no money? Why does the church tell us to have food storage? There are many reasons, but we as a nation are already going into bankurptcy, we cannot afford this, we cannot even afford social security. It makes no sense to spend more than you make, it’s very simple. There are too many people in this country who have their hands out because we keep them dumb and poor. Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day, teach a man to fish and you feed him for life. Did you also know that in this health care bill they are taking out private funding for education, this is not just about health care. You may think I’m too stupid to understand your so smart liberal lifestyle, but I don’t think like that, I was raised differently.

  43. Hillary, your comments are pretty reflective of how many people feel today, but I think it’s a bit much to throw abortion and same-sex marriage into this discussion. I think you make the mistake of saying, “well, we all must agree on political issues in the Church,” and the reality is there is a wide variety of political viewpoints within the Church and there always has been and probably always will be. The majority of Latter-day Saints voted for FDR, despite Pres. Grant openly urging them not to. He was far to the left of Obama.

    Look, I oppose this health care bill with all my heart, and I know the majority of people in my ward and probably my stake do also. Having said that, there are some really smart people — good Latter-day Saints — whom I respect a lot who disagree with me. I will continue to put forward my political beliefs, but I will never question the righteousness of those who disagree with me. You never know: you may change your opinions over time and then you feel pretty silly insulting other people who disagree with you today, especially if you call their views Satanic.

    My comment at the top was simply meant to point out that the political opinions of most Bloggernaclites are not really reflective of the opinions of most Latter-day Saints. It is great that people in the Bloggernacle have a place to put forward such opinions because they most likely are in wards where their (liberal) opinions are a minority. I usually feel like my opinions are a minority in the Bloggernacle, so I know how they feel.

    No aspersions intended to be cast in either direction.

  44. @Chris #12

    Glad you got a laugh.

    But I have a feeling it’s me and other ‘right wing crazies’ or whatever you called me, will be laughing at you when your taxes go up and you won’t be able to afford to use the insurance you are forced to buy.

    Have a nice day.

  45. “Seeing conservatives like you freak out over this is making this more precious to me that I ever would have imagined. Thanks for brightening my day.”

    That is the comment you are referencing. I did not write “right wing crazies” or anything like it.

    I am willing to pay more taxes if it makes the lives of others better, and if I cannot afford insurance…I am glad that I will no longer be left to go without.

  46. @Paul #38

    In this country it is legal for anywoman up to 20 weeks of prenancy to have an abortion for no reason, any reason = killing her baby at her own will. And I am talking about elective abortion not rape/incest/health of the mother terminations. Those seem to be the instances that the pro-abortion left cites in their quest to keep the murder of the unborn legal. Those are two seperate issues.

    As a person who struggled to have a child for years, abortion is disgusting to me, and it upsets me greatly that my taxes will now go to kill the unborn. It disguts me even more that Harry Reid, a member of the LDS Church and Nancy Pelosi, a Catholic, are ok with this.

    You want real sexual freedom feminists? You want to truly have choice? Choose not to create a life if you don’t want or are not ready for a child. Choose to be responsible with your sexuality. Chose to respect the power to procreate.

    That’s all.

  47. I am open to other opinions on this matter, but it seems pretty clear to me that the health care bill DOES fund taxpayer-funded abortion. I consider it incredibly offensive that my tax money goes to fund abortion, and I speak as someone who favors abortion in some cases (incest, rape, mother’s life in danger). I also favor the morning after pill and I do not believe life begins at conception, so I am far from an extremist on this issue.

    Please convince me that this bill will not provide for taxpayer-funded abortion. I’m open to being swayed.

  48. Chris H, regarding your #8 (or 58, if you will), how does it make you feel that people like myself and Joyce are likely to lose our health insurance because of this bill? And before you blame it on evil corporations, keep in mind that businesses are all about profit and loss or else they cannot remain in business. This bill will increase health care costs immediately, and any smart businessman will say, “either I drop health care or I have to fire 20 percent of my workforce.” So, the evil corporation is actually making a moral choice to keep people on the payroll but to drop benefits. At least they will keep their jobs.

  49. I do not think that corporations are evil. Geoff, since you get to decide the parameters of the debate, including the parameters of my own arguments. I am not really interested.

  50. Christopher, given the differences between the U.S. systems and other systems, could you provide me some proof that that will take effect here?

    Chris H, I was just anticipating a possible line of discussion. I know you don’t think all corporations are evil. I truly am interested in your answer.

  51. The most interesting (and nauseating) thing about this legislation is that its Democrat supporters claim they’ve struck a blow against the big, bad health insurance industry, when, in reality, they’ve just forced every American to become a customer of the insurance industry.

    This bill is a textbook example of corporatocracy: Government is in the pocket of big business, creating legislation that gives corporations more unwilling customers and protecting monopolies.

    In that sense, it’s not that different than the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, and the billions of dollars in contracts they brought to the military/industrial complex (Halliburton, Blackwater, and the defense industry).

    People on the left and on the right both love corporate/state solutions. They just don’t like the ones supported by the other side the aisle.

  52. OT: I suggest that the pager be turned off, or the number of comments per page increased to a large number, because it is confusing and makes the site hard to use.

  53. Mark D, agreed. I don’t know how to do that in WordPress. I am open to guidance.

    Mike Parker, count me as one small voice against govt/corporate deals of all stripes. The military-industrial complex is real and dangerous. Now we have a health care-industrial-government complex.

    Every time the government decides to get out (or stay out) of an industry it flourishes. Think of the telecom business or the internet. We should learn from those examples.

  54. Christopher, interesting link. There appear to be several variables that decrease abortion, one of which is greater health care access, one of which is higher rates of employment and another of which is pro-life beliefs. I guess I would say that there are easier and less expensive ways of increasing health care access, such as de-linking employment from health insurance. Such a move would have the added benefit of lowering costs for businesses, which would mean more employment, which would also decrease the number of abortions. Clearly, we should be promoting pro-life views as well, right? 🙂

    Anyway, thanks for the link. Instructive.

  55. Geoff: “Every time the government decides to get out (or stay out) of an industry it flourishes. Think of the telecom business or the internet.”

    More to the point, when the government deregulates and breaks up monopolies, consumers win. Anyone remember the poor service, expensive long distance, and crappy equipment forced on us by Ma Bell? That breakup required the Baby Bells to be more innovative and charge customers less…or die. Some of them did die. But no one can say the long distance telephone market is more expensive or lower quality than it used to be.

    The Democrats’ health care legislation preserves the anticompetitive markets (there are only one to three major insurance carriers in each state) and requires people to buy insurance from them. What more could the insurance corporations ask for? No innovation, no cross-state competition. You think the health insurance market stinks now? Just wait.

  56. “My husband and I worked our butts off to get through school just to turn around and pay high taxes for others who are unwilling to do so. I live in an area of the country where it’s not just, oh, he’s too old or too sick, it’s more about sitting on your can and waiting for your welfare check. I didn’t work hard for someone else, do you see the dilema?”

    Hillary,I wish you and your husband good health all your lives, I really do. But this statement just shocks me. Do you honestly think anyone *wants* to be sick? Are you privy to the personal and medical histories of every single one of those people you say are ‘sitting on your can and waiting for their welfare check’? do you honestly know why they can’t work, or are you just assuming they choose not to? Are you (whisper the word) prejudging?

    Many of us worked our backside off through university and higher ed, but sometimes stuff happens. Sometimes we are at the mercy of our genes- nothing we can do about that. Some people have been irreparably damaged by poor working environments, harsh living conditions,ageing, dementia, all sorts of factors outwith our control.

    Your argument cuts to the core, it would appear to those living outside the US- dress it up as you will, from concerns about the Constitution, to whatever-, but the impression received by the rest of the world is that the haves don’t want to pay for the have nots. At the moment the US appears an ugly place to be; I hope for the sakes of all my American friends that the situation calms down soon.

  57. Geoff at 5.25am (I’m impressed- who is blogging at 5.25 am?!)

    “I’m not sure you have considered the worldwide affects on your country and others of a complete bankruptcy of the U.S. financial system”.

    We had a little taste of the like with the fiasco of the US sub prime mortgage market and the knock on effects that had around the world. We’re all still paying for it.

  58. Anne, I believe with all my heart that our huge deficits will have an adverse effect on the entire world economy, and this is my primary reason for opposing another entitlement. Take a look at this chart:

    Government spending as a percentage of GDP is unprecedented except for wartime. This is simply not sustainable. The new entitlement will make the situation worse. I hope it does not happen, but the coming credit meltdown is likely to be worse than the sub prime mortgage meltdown. Don’t say you weren’t warned.

  59. The way I look at it is: would you rather pay to kill people, or pay to give your fellow citizens the gift of health?

    It may sound simplistic, but if your argument is that the deficit is so bad, then make up your mind which one you want.

    If the answer is to fund an unwinnable war, then that speaks for itself.

  60. No question that (white anglo) LDS in the US are far to the right politically. (I do not consider Geoff B to be far to the right.) Hillary’s views are fairly representative of (white anglo) US LDS views. The fact that Utah’s attorney general was among the 13 who sued to overturn the law, a few minutes after Obama signed, probably represents the views of most of his constituents.

    Those views are not reflective of LDS views outside of the US (I don’t have statistical info on views of nonwhite nonanglo LDS in the US, but I suspect the views differ as well). The most recent issue of the Journal of Mormon History reviews a book on political attitudes of LDS inside and outside the US. Jeffrey C. Fox, Latter-day Political Views reviewed by John J Hammond. With respect to their own countries, LDS views tend to be conservative. However, conservative LDS Canadians are quite pleased with their [socialist?] healthcare system, and most view the US system (pre-reform) as immoral.

    I suspect that there are very few LDS outside the US who advocate repeal of their government provided or subsidized healthcare.

  61. @Anne, “The way I look at it is: would you rather pay to kill people, or pay to give your fellow citizens the gift of health? It may sound simplistic…”

    Yes, it does sound simplistic, Anne. Ridiculously so.

  62. David H, you need to start hanging out with non-Anglo Cuban-Americans in Miami. It may give you a different view. But your larger point is probably accurate.

  63. Anne, I’m not sure I understand your point. Is it that people who oppose the health care bill are all war-mongerers who support the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan? If so, that is not accurate. A very large percentage of tea party protesters, for example, are anti-spending libertarians who oppose spending on health care and the war. That is my personal opinion as well.

    If your point is that people are supporting death of their fellow citizens by not favoring health care, I would point out that the current U.S. health care system is the envy of the world. Wealthy Europeans and Canadians regularly fly to the U.S. to undergo complex surgeries that cannot be done in their countries. I would also point out that government does not run anything well, and at the end of the day, yes, people die because of government mistakes and government interference. We’ve been reading about a lot of government mistakes with the British system these days that have caused a lot of unnecessary deaths. The balance between overweaning government and freedom is a delicate one. I fall on the side of freedom.

  64. GeoffB, The bill per se does not ban federal spending on abortion, but the President has said that he will extend that ban via an executive order. It’s what helped to bring some of the last votes on board in favor.

    As to the special deals cut for Nebraska, Louisiana, and Florida, that helped to get the bill passed in the Senate, IIRC, ththe provisions for Nebraska and Florida were extended to all the states in the house version, and the Louisiana provisions were primarily in support of Hurricane Katrina victims.

    One of the best things, in my opinion about the bill, is that one of the first things that happens is the ending on lifetime benefit caps imposed by most insurers. No insurance company can throw you out of treatment now when your cancer treatments, being somewhat successful, extend your life, just because they are expensive.

  65. KevinF, in a perfect world everybody could have all of the health insurance they wanted. Unfortunately, health insurers have lifetime caps, and do not cover pre-existing conditions, for a reason. The reason is that health care is expensive. Health insurance is all about risk. The health insurance companies are betting that a certain amount of people will not get sick and if they do get sick they will not have to spend $10 million treating them.

    When you start forcing health care companies to change the way they do business, it is like squeezing a balloon. Yes, it is great there is no longer a lifetime cap and it is great people with pre-existing conditions must be covered, but you are forcing health insurers to come up with extra revenue somewhere else. The balloon is squeezed one place, but it just pops out another. Where will they get the extra revenue? By raising rates on other healthy people. As a result, companies like mine will start dropping coverage.

    There is no free lunch, especially with government mandates, which add extra layers of bureaucracy and cost. There will be a lot of new winners and a lot of new losers. But the government will choose them, rather than the marketplace.

  66. Ann,

    I in no way would wish for anyone to get sick, my mother was recently diagnosed with grave’s disease and last week I had a miscarraige. I know all about heart ache and medical problems, I’m not perfect and I feel horrible about the fact that people will have health challenges but playing on my moral feelings does not change the fact that I will only resent my government for making me hand over my hard earned money. Some are ok with that, I am not and it does not mean that I’m not charitable or kind. Having said that, I would in no way expect others to pay for my medical bills, they are mine and mine alone. I do not disagree with assistance for those who are in need, but a complete overhaul of our system is not needed. This is a power grab by our federal government and most Americans would not want our system down graded. I’m glad that you seem happy with the UK health system, but I’m sure there are plenty out there who don’t like waiting in line when they are having an emergency, or when they are told they have cancer and can’t get treatment for 8 months and could be dead by then. Mandating that everyone have healthcare and that everyone else should pay for it will not create a utopia of healthy people, it just makes for crappy healthcare and more dead people. As far as the haves not wanting to give to the have nots, I guess that’s why we Americans are the most charitable nation on earth.

  67. D&C 104:16

    … behold this is the way that I, the Lord, have decreed to provide for my saints, that the poor shall be exalted, in that the rich are made low.

    See, the Democrats are just “the voice of one crying in the wilderness”, preparing us for the eventual return of the Law of Consecration…

  68. Geoff B: the NHS is not perfect, but it is a pretty decent system. It is improving year on year.On average, one British person will use the NHS 2,153 times in their lifetime.You hear about the mistakes, and get them blown up into full scale scare stories (example: the rubbish about ‘death panels’). Human error can happen under any system. The scare stories get pushed by media with an agenda.

    I don’t know anyone queuing up to go to the US for routine treatment. It’s pretty much impossible to get travel insurance to the US if you have a pre-existing condition, anyway.Only the ‘haves’ could afford to consider that as an option. I agree that with cutting edge treatment the US is probably ahead of us, but what’s the use of that for the majority of people who will never need it but do need to see a doctor regularly or who need lifetime medications for a chronic illness?

    Look at a list of life expectancy, look at the US position as opposed to those ahead, compare systems, and look at how well your current system is serving your fellowman.

    Hillary: I am sorry to hear of your mother and indeed your own recent miscarriage. truly.
    Please let me address more untruths though:

    emergencies are triaged. No-one waits more than 4 hours to be seen in A&E (government directive), and are seen according to the urgency of their complaint. Last year I woke with chest pains at 2am, rang for advice, and was taken to hospital by ambulance and on an ECG machine within 30 mins of phoning for advice (a paramedic was at my house within 7 mins of the call).

    No-one waits 8 months for cancer treatment. They used to, under a Conservative government, but no longer. My brother was diagnosed with bowel cancer the week before Christmas. He was offered surgery the next day but chose to wait until after the holiday period.I was offered an appointment for screening the next week (we have an unfortunate family history of that cancer). The maximum wait for non urgent referrals is now 12 weeks. Next day appointments are more often than not offered for urgent referrals. The decision to treat to start of treatment must now be less than 30 days.

    However the scare stories suit the agenda far more than the reality, which is a huge pity and an insult to the NHS and those who work in it.

    I have one American friend who has never been unemployed but had the misfortune to have an asthma attack last year and spent 24 hours in hospital. She will spend 10 years paying off her bill. How can that be fair? How can your current system be satisfactory if that is the case?

    I have another American friend who developed health probs on her mission and is now facing bankruptcy because she can’t pay for her medication and the regular meds she needs for the rest of her life as a consequence. How is that Christlike treatment of others? Where’s the charity there?

    I have a friend who needs monthly meds but has to choose between paying her rent or buying her meds. She can’t afford both. So she compromises and maybe only buys meds one month in 3. That has to be wrong. she’s employed.

    Under our system they would all be covered- and it costs me less each month than I spend on tithing. I don’t know anyone who resents paying it; ‘there but for the grace of God’ and so on.

  69. Anne, thank you for your thoughtful input. Once again I am up very early, but today we’re going on holiday, so no time to respond to all your good thoughts.

    All the best to you and yours. Geoff B

  70. I am impressed again at your early rising!

    I’m off line for a couple of days myself anyway from tonight, but thanks for the discussion, it’s been illuminating.(I’ll be able to read via my phone, but not post).

    Enjoy your holiday!

  71. I’m glad that it’s working out for you and if what you say is true then great! I also agree that your friends shouldn’t be bankrupt and should be able to get quality care without having to go without food, ect. Most Americans will agree that we need some change, we all know that it isn’t perfect but this is not the kind of change we wanted. We overwhelmingly said no, and they did it anyway. The corruption and back room deals that went on are a complete slap in the face. My problem is the fact that our government does not grant our rights to us, that comes from god. Taking ones money away and giving it to another, for whatever reason is called redistribution of wealth and is not what you claim as charitable. Charity comes from an individual giving freely to another, not by being told they have to. You have no choice, you have to do it by mandate from your government, even though you aren’t upset about it, it’s not true charity. We are probably never going to agree on this because let’s face it, I’m an American, our system has always been a capitalist one. You on the other hand, live in more of a socialist society. We see things very differently based of the environment that we’ve been brought up in. Americans hold the constitution up as the banner in which we govern ourselves and our polititians have just sold us out. Most of us would have been fine with reforming and debating it, but they didn’t even do that, they just pushed it though. Overall, our country cannot afford this right now, we are already in bankruptcy and this bill will put us over the edge. I’m sure we can at least agree upon the fact that it’s not wise as a nation to spend more than you make. This bill is part of that. We are not just worried about what it will do to our healthcare system, but we are also worried about freedom!

  72. As a bona fide Americano, I want to say that I am mad as all heck at the way the government strongarms us and takes away our freedom. I just found out that the government forces, FORCES us, genuine American citizens, to have car insurance! Can you believe that?!?!?!?!?! The constitution says nothing about car insurance, therefore this encroachment on my rights is unconstitutional! If I want to drive without insurance, it’s nobody else’s business.

    The insurance/industrial complex has now become a partner with the government, not only with health insurance but with car insurance too. They are taking away our freedoms and free agency bit by bit, and are forcing us to become socialist. None dare call it conspiracy. Anyone who understands the pre-existence can recognize this as part of Satan’s plan. The Kingmen are taking over.

  73. Geoff,

    You state that you know that most members in your ward and stake oppose the health care bill. Please back this up with how you “know” this. By your statement, you and the members of your ward and stake must be talking about political issues while in church meetings. NOT THE PLACE FOR THAT TO OCCUR!

  74. I just found out that the government forces, FORCES us, genuine American citizens, to have car insurance! Can you believe that?!?!?!?!?! The constitution says nothing about car insurance, therefore this encroachment on my rights is unconstitutional!

    Car insurance is different for three reasons:

    (1) It is mandated by states rather than by the federal government. No one has made the argument that the Massachusetts mandate is against the Constitution of the United States, for example. The reason is that the constitutionally enumerated powers of the federal government do not constrain the states. That is what state constitutions are for.

    (2) States require drivers to purchase auto insurance not to cover injury to themselves, but rather injury to others.

    (3) The state requirement only applies to the operators of vehicles on public roads. The federal requirement applies to everybody.

    As a consequence of (2) the requisite level of auto insurance coverage is inexpensive. The government doesn’t make people purchase gasoline coverage, or lube and oil coverage, auto repair coverage, collision coverage, etc. Only coverage of possible injury to others.

    The biggest problem about government involvement in health insurance is that as a consequence of various WWII era tax laws most health insurance is not insurance (i.e. an indemnity against events that have not yet occured) at all. It rather is an extremely bureaucratic tax avoidance system on run of the mill, every day expenses.

    If the government exempted food from corporate income taxes you would see food “insurance” plans in a heart beat as well, to the great detriment of the country.

    What about “rent” insurance plans? Surely food and housing are at least as important as medical care.

  75. racoon113, we don’t discuss politics in Church. I live in a small town. We just had the Republican caucuses in Colorado. Most of my ward was there and spoke out against the health care bill. My father-in-law is in another ward in my stake and had the same experience.

  76. Chris,

    Are you new to proof reading your comments? Are you saying that just because our congress cuts deals and takes bribes on a regular basis that it’s ok? It’s never been ok and as an upstanding church member I’d would hope that you’d be against corruption of any kind. It’s in both parties and should not be the stardard by which we go about legislation.

  77. Thanks, Geoff. The upside of this situation is that the U.S. is going bankrupt so fast that we will probably see a snapback to a system more conservative than we have now within a decade.

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