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1  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: The Present Israel-Palestine Conflict Thread on: July 29, 2014, 12:04:54 pm
One can generally predict a tone of an article on this just by someone's name...
RACIST!
If someone said this about a Jewish writer.....

2  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: The Present Israel-Palestine Conflict Thread on: July 28, 2014, 07:50:55 pm

But what does this have to do with Israel?!

Nothing at all. Let's get back to the issue at hand.
3  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Plan to split California into 6 states advances on: July 28, 2014, 03:41:14 pm
It's worth noting that nobody ever uses "Silicon Valley" as a geographical designation. The Santa Clara Valley is without exception referred to as the South Bay.

Yeah, I have rarely heard anyone say "Silicon Valley" over South Bay.

Nathan, no need to worry. I doubt even a majority of South Bay residents would be in favor if the name "silicon valley" if the Bay Area becomes a state. Especially since there is such an obvious name already....
4  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Is the death penalty justice or revenge? on: July 28, 2014, 03:23:05 pm
It really depends on the crime, but if someone murdered one of your relatives, what kind of penalty would you prefer then?

I made this thread after thinking about that specifically. I am conflicted, but if I were to favor the death penalty, it would be to exact revenge against the killer of my family member.
5  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: The Present Israel-Palestine Conflict Thread on: July 28, 2014, 09:34:14 am
I think Kashmiris should be given a referendum with 3 option; Pakistan, India or independence. Administering free and fair elections would be a challenge though and the referendum should require a majority to pass, meaning the chance of it failing to do anything would be high. I also don't see such a referendum occurring. The best case scenario is a semi-autonomous state of Kashmir, which it sort of already is, except for the soldiers....In any case, I am sure Pakistan would again invade an independent Kashmir, sending us back to square one.
6  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: The Present Israel-Palestine Conflict Thread on: July 27, 2014, 10:58:57 pm
but can you not understand why Palestinians might be just a tad bit pissed off by this situation that was imposed on them? Germany and others in Europe orchestrate the holocaust. Then they eff over the Palestinians to make themselves feel better. Yay colonialism!
I get, I suppose, why they went all "push 'em into da sea" in 1947, but 3 generations later and nothing to show for it (and in fact, a lot of lost...ahem...ground), well sir, that's insane.

More like typical human behavior.
Is it though?  A lot of refugees were created around the same time, yet few of them have grandchildren fighting the same fight grandpa did.  India/Pakistan is the only other one I can think of off the top of my head....and I'm pretty sure India wouldn't sit back and let rockets be fired at their civilians either.

I don't have so much a problem with what Israel is currently doing, but rather with their overall approach to the situation. Hamas firing rockets into Israel is just silliness and to be expected from them. Those people just cannot envision any other option to protest their oppression than with violence.
7  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: The Present Israel-Palestine Conflict Thread on: July 27, 2014, 07:30:30 pm
This whole tragedy is so predictable. Zionists continuing their colonization of Palestine and accelerating it through the building of settlements leading to more desperation on the Palestinian side. Hapless leaders in Palestine not being able to even come into an agreement amongst themselves, let alone being able to negotiate with Israel. Stupid terrorists taking the opportunity to launch rockets they know will not reach their targets due to the Iron Dome. Israel, despite possessing the Iron dome, invades Gaza knowing it will cause massive civilian casualties, despite claiming they care about civilian casualties. And of course self righteous Americans pretending like Israel is in the right even though they would violently destroy anyone who tries to take their land. I really want Native Americans to go back and just randomly take over houses built on top of their ancestral land. I hope it happens to dead0man just to see his reaction. I am sure he will be very understanding.

Because I'm sure you'd willingly surrender your property and assets to the Native Americans who used to live there.

Hell no I wouldn't. I am also not one of those who think Palestinians are in the wrong for trying to fight for the land they have lived on for generations, no matter who may have lived there before them.
8  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: The Present Israel-Palestine Conflict Thread on: July 27, 2014, 07:29:04 pm
I hope it happens to dead0man just to see his reaction. I am sure he will be very understanding.
I have no idea how'd react, but I can guarantee you one funking thing, my grand kids wouldn't still be "refugees" firing rockets across the Missouri River 70 years later.

So what do you think the Palestinians should do? I think the only obvious solution to go is the non-violent resistance route and shame Israel into giving them their own autonomous land, but can you not understand why Palestinians might be just a tad bit pissed off by this situation that was imposed on them? Germany and others in Europe orchestrate the holocaust. Then they fukc over the Palestinians to make themselves feel better. Yay colonialism!
9  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: The Present Israel-Palestine Conflict Thread on: July 27, 2014, 07:25:10 pm
This whole tragedy is so predictable. Zionists continuing their colonization of Palestine and accelerating it through the building of settlements leading to more desperation on the Palestinian side. Hapless leaders in Palestine not being able to even come into an agreement amongst themselves, let alone being able to negotiate with Israel. Stupid terrorists taking the opportunity to launch rockets they know will not reach their targets due to the Iron Dome. Israel, despite possessing the Iron dome, invades Gaza knowing it will cause massive civilian casualties, despite claiming they care about civilian casualties. And of course self righteous Americans pretending like Israel is in the right even though they would violently destroy anyone who tries to take their land. I really want Native Americans to go back and just randomly take over houses built on top of their ancestral land. I hope it happens to dead0man just to see his reaction. I am sure he will be very understanding.

Who needs hypothetical hypocrisy when you can find some Americans complaining about Israeli colonialism while, you know, living in and loving America?
 

I don't think the situation in Israel and America can be compared. Maybe if we are talking about the America that was actively enslaving blacks and removing Natives from their land, sure. But in 2014, Israel is the one actively being a colonial power.

And my point was more about understanding why Palestinians act the way they do, and the inability of many in America to understand it . Obviously it would be preferable if they acted like Gandhi, Mandela or Dr. King, but it should be understandable if they don't. Not everyone can live up to those standards, and for whatever reason, the Middle East isn't the sort if place that is very open to non-violent resistance.
10  Other Elections - Analysis and Discussion / 2014 House Election Polls / Re: CA-52: GBA Strategies (D): Peters leading by 5 on: July 27, 2014, 08:25:23 am
I doubt it's tied, unskewing is never accurate, as proven last cycle. DeMaio is highly overrated and isn't as big of a shoe in as Republicans have made him out to be.

SurveyUSA had Peters down by 7 and a partisan poll has him up only by 5. Do you seriously believe the race is closer to this poll than the non-partisan one? And if so, why do you think that?
11  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: The Present Israel-Palestine Conflict Thread on: July 26, 2014, 09:31:27 pm
This whole tragedy is so predictable. Zionists continuing their colonization of Palestine and accelerating it through the building of settlements leading to more desperation on the Palestinian side. Hapless leaders in Palestine not being able to even come into an agreement amongst themselves, let alone being able to negotiate with Israel. Stupid terrorists taking the opportunity to launch rockets they know will not reach their targets due to the Iron Dome. Israel, despite possessing the Iron dome, invades Gaza knowing it will cause massive civilian casualties, despite claiming they care about civilian casualties. And of course self righteous Americans pretending like Israel is in the right even though they would violently destroy anyone who tries to take their land. I really want Native Americans to go back and just randomly take over houses built on top of their ancestral land. I hope it happens to dead0man just to see his reaction. I am sure he will be very understanding.
12  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Is the death penalty justice or revenge? on: July 26, 2014, 12:09:18 pm
Suppose a convicted serial killer is sentenced to natural life in prison without parole. While in prison the killer manages to fabricate a knife and kills a prison guard. There is no additional incarceration that the justice system can add to the killer's sentence. If the death penalty is used in this case, I would consider it justice, not revenge.

That is an interesting case you bring up and I would agree with you in this particular case. In order to keep society safe, we would need to kill a person like that.

For the most part though, the death penalty is just government sanctioned revenge killing. I can see how that could be fine in really heinous cases like the rape/murder of the PT student in India(where the death penalty was used after a long time) or the Boston marathon bombers, but the death penalty really needs to be used much more selectively than it is today in America. It should not be used for every random gang member who shoots another gang member.
13  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Arizona execution lasts almost 2 hours on: July 26, 2014, 07:12:08 am
I really think we should use the guillotine in public squares for capital punishment or at least broadcast it on TV. It is a humane way of killing people and if as a society we decide to kill people, we should have to look at the consequences of our decision. If you can't do that, you shouldn't be in favor of the death penalty.
14  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Is the death penalty justice or revenge? on: July 26, 2014, 07:02:14 am
Just something I was thinking of while reading about the Arizona case. I feel it is revenge, which is not necessarily an attack on the death penalty. I think it is natural for family members to want revenge and one cannot fault them for that. Still, we should stop pretending the death penalty is justice.
15  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Subsidies through Healthcare.gov may be illegal. on: July 22, 2014, 05:28:46 pm
I won't comment on the decision because I don't know enough about the law to comment intelligently.

That being said, the consequences of this being upheld by the supreme court would be devastating. This would in effect lead to many more healthy people not joining plans, leading to a sicker pool of patients signing up for ACA plans, leading to higher and higher premiums. While some conservatives who live in their mom's basements and don't interact with the real world will be ecstatic, this decision would unnecessarily hurt a lot of people.

There are a lot of problems with the ACA, and I have outlined some myself and been accused of posting clickbait, but the subsidies are not it. Whoever came up with this challenge is an ideologue whose only concern is defeating Obama, not upholding the constitution or creating better public policy. The ACA is the law of the land and businesses have adjusted to it. There are many ways of making the law better but destroying it creates more uncertainty and hurts the economy.
16  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Obamacare enrollees having trouble finding specialists on: July 20, 2014, 06:01:11 pm
I never said that all plans by one insurer have the same network. BlueCross of TN has several, and I believe all of them are available on the exchange. My point, and I don't think you get this, is that my network is shared with other insured people and not all of them bought their policies on the exchanges. There are people who have their policies sponsored by their employers who have the exact same network I do. There is no such thing as an Obamacare network. But even if there were, it would be incumbent on you to mathmatically demonstrate that the problems are substantially more severe than for the same population, many of whom had no legit insurance at all, before the ACA. Otherwise, your headline may as well say "Chinese people having trouble finding specialists." In some cases, it may be literally true because it's an issue for everybody, but there is a profoundly misleading issue of connectivity implied.

Sigh. Some plans are narrow network and some are not. I don't understand why this is so hard for you to get, although I should not be surprised. Even BCBST, who you say is your insurer, has a P network and a S network.

And before you say both networks are available on the exchange, in order to get the better network one must pay more. My point is that even the cheapest plans on the exchange with the crappy network has a high premium and high deductible.
And this is different than employer sponsered plans because? Restrictive networks are an issue. I agree with you on that. My concern is that you are suggesting it's a problem primarily for the "Obamacare" crowd. Many employers also give a few options with different (subsidized) prices for insurance, even if they are within the same insurer. Before the exchanges were in operation, I had a policy that I bought individually and I also had to choose my network carefully then. What is the specific connection between the ACA and the network issue? 

It's not a good value considering the premium, especially for the young.
17  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Obamacare enrollees having trouble finding specialists on: July 19, 2014, 10:57:29 pm
I never said that all plans by one insurer have the same network. BlueCross of TN has several, and I believe all of them are available on the exchange. My point, and I don't think you get this, is that my network is shared with other insured people and not all of them bought their policies on the exchanges. There are people who have their policies sponsored by their employers who have the exact same network I do. There is no such thing as an Obamacare network. But even if there were, it would be incumbent on you to mathmatically demonstrate that the problems are substantially more severe than for the same population, many of whom had no legit insurance at all, before the ACA. Otherwise, your headline may as well say "Chinese people having trouble finding specialists." In some cases, it may be literally true because it's an issue for everybody, but there is a profoundly misleading issue of connectivity implied.

Sigh. Some plans are narrow network and some are not. I don't understand why this is so hard for you to get, although I should not be surprised. Even BCBST, who you say is your insurer, has a P network and a S network.

And before you say both networks are available on the exchange, in order to get the better network one must pay more. My point is that even the cheapest plans on the exchange with the crappy network has a high premium and high deductible.
18  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Obamacare enrollees having trouble finding specialists on: July 19, 2014, 10:12:05 am
Even those bronze plans and ones with narrow networks have very high premiums as well as deductibles. It is really not a good deal for a whole bunch of people.
Insurance is not supposed to be a good deal. It's not an invrstment. It's insurance. It's there to cover your Inks just in case something terrible happens.

And if you are having trouble finding a specialist to treat your cancer, it defeats the purpose.

Also, one can determine value in insurance. It actually is a great deal for those who are old, because their premiums are lower now. Not so much for Obama's base.
Obama's base is the working poor. They are getting enormous subsidies. It's an incredible deal for them. And despite the clickbait headline, I don't see any evidence here that people in exchange based plans have more difficulty finding docs than those with employer sponsered plans. These are the same private insurance plans that people get through their employers. Mine is with BlueCross. I doubt the doctor's office even knows that I bought mine on the exchange. There is, in fact, no such product as Obamacare.

Every plan has its own network, and the premium is priced based on that. Of course there are employer plans with narrow networks as well, but it's a hilariously naive thing to say that all plans by an insurer have the same network. It could be true for a PCP or a hospital, but plans within an insurer will vary when it comes to specialists as their service is more valuable and they have an upper hand in negotiations with insurers. When designing narrow network plans, such as the Obamacare plans, insurers will likely not include a lot of well known and sought after specialists in that network.

Also, Obama's base includes young, single people of all economic backgrounds. The subsidies for these plans aren't so great if you haven't popped out a couple of kids yet.
19  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Obamacare enrollees having trouble finding specialists on: July 19, 2014, 09:10:36 am
Even those bronze plans and ones with narrow networks have very high premiums as well as deductibles. It is really not a good deal for a whole bunch of people.
Insurance is not supposed to be a good deal. It's not an invrstment. It's insurance. It's there to cover your Inks just in case something terrible happens.

And if you are having trouble finding a specialist to treat your cancer, it defeats the purpose.

Also, one can determine value in insurance. It actually is a great deal for those who are old, because their premiums are lower now. Not so much for Obama's base.
20  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: Pew polls the world on opinions of the US, China, etc. on: July 18, 2014, 09:43:38 am
What has Pakistan ever done for the US though? Why would they have any expectations from a relationship where they have given nothing? Even helping the mujahideen was ultimately in Pakistan's interests as they gained greater control over Afghanistan.

In addition, why do they think the US should support them in wars they unilaterally start against India for no good reason? Every single war in the history of India/Pakistan has been started by Pakistan. They have deluded themselves into thinking this is proper behavior befitting a country that is committed to a peaceful and prosperous world. And to make things worse, they have nuclear weapons.
21  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: Obamacare enrollees having trouble finding specialists on: July 18, 2014, 07:55:02 am
Even those bronze plans and ones with narrow networks have very high premiums as well as deductibles. It is really not a good deal for a whole bunch of people.
22  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: Pew polls the world on opinions of the US, China, etc. on: July 17, 2014, 08:07:09 pm
The ISI supported the Pakistani Taliban as much as the CIA did. It turned out be unfortunate for both countries.

That was a long time ago, and as pointed out, they weren't the Taliban. The ISI built the Taliban so they could have control of Afghanistan. As you may know, the relationship between the non-Pashtun Afghani population and Pakistan is not great. And to this day the ISI continues to support terrorist groups, and will continue to do so.
23  General Politics / International General Discussion / Re: Pew polls the world on opinions of the US, China, etc. on: July 17, 2014, 05:40:51 pm
Tue fact that Pakistanis hate America as much as India and fear us more really shows how bad our foreign policy really is.

Are you arguing that we shouldn't have killed Bin Laden?
No, but just about everything else we've done has been horrible. The drone strikes, the interventions in the Tribal Regions, etc. And I do think that we could have handled the UBL raid better, but his death is enough for me to shove my principles under the rug.

That is a very naive view of the world. The Pakistanis hate us because we are actually doing something about their constant coddling of terrorists. The ISI trains terrorists and the Pakistanis celebrate them as freedom fighters. I was the biggest opponent of the Iraq war and I still strongly oppose invasions and regime changes, but surgical strikes against terrorists is one of the best innovations of US foreign policy in recent years.
24  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Obamacare enrollees having trouble finding specialists on: July 17, 2014, 02:07:24 pm
Quote
Primary care doctors have reported problems making referrals for patients who have purchased some of the cheaper plans from the federal insurance marketplace. Complaints about narrow networks with too few doctors have attracted the attention of federal regulators and have even prompted lawsuits.


Quote
Narrow provider networks are not new, but they’ve attracted attention again with the rollout of the ACA. Analysts point out that narrow networks are a powerful tool for insurance companies seeking to control costs – especially since they can no longer control costs by excluding sick people or adjusting premiums by gender or age.

The insurance industry's position is that patients have choices. Plans with access to more hospitals and specialists are available, but usually at a higher price.

"Our goal was to offer an array of plan choices,” says Louis Adams, a spokesman for Blue Cross Blue Shield of Texas. “We created more focused networks as a way to offer a broad range of plans with lower premium prices, both on the exchange and in the retail market in general."


Quote
Sawhney worries that when patients learn that some medical doors are closed, they will decide insurance is simply not worth the money.

“I don’t want patients to get discouraged,” she said. “I don’t want patients when they have a choice again to say, ‘You know what? I’m just not going to sign up because it doesn’t matter if I have insurance or I don’t have insurance, I still have problems getting health care.’”

The president of the Harris County Medical Society, Dr. Elizabeth Torres, said she fears there could also be a backlash among primary care doctors. Not because the narrow-network HMOs have lower reimbursements, she said, but simply because it’s too hard to find the specialists.

“If it’s going to cost us a lot of hassle, administratively and as far as finding the specialists, then it’s going to be less likely and less favorable for us to actually want to be part of the plan,” said Torres, an internist in the Houston suburb of Sugar Land.


Quote
That could change going forward. CMS regulators have told insurers they will be examining the new batch of plans in 2015, to make sure plans offer “reasonable access” – particularly in the areas of hospitals, mental health, oncology and primary care. Regulators also hinted they might develop rules in the future that are more specific: for example, a limit on how far a patient must travel to reach an in-network specialist, or a limit on how long a patient must wait for an appointment.


http://www.kaiserhealthnews.org/Stories/2014/July/17/narrow-networks-specialists-community-health-centers-insurance.aspx
25  General Politics / U.S. General Discussion / Re: US uninsurance rate drops to 13.4%, record low on: July 17, 2014, 07:28:49 am
I have insurance because of it and I am immensely grateful.

I think most people in this forum, unless they got covered by the Medicaid expansion or through their parents, lost out because of the ACA. I will actually have to pay more than double the amount I pay for insurance next year because of the ACA.

As a self-employed freelancer, I too have insurance solely because of the ACA. Best of all, it's at a significantly lower rate than when I had to make COBRA payments several years ago.

I bought insurance from the individual market last December and it was much cheaper than I thought it would be. Of course, it doesn't cover pre-existing conditions or maternity coverage, but it covers everything else after a $2,500 deductible. The plan is grandfathered in till this December but after that I must buy from the exchange. Those plans have premiums that are double what I am paying currently, and a higher deductible. My experience with the individual market was surprisingly pleasant and I would like the option of not having to pay for maternity coverage, which is not an option on the exchange plans.
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