What’s Behind The Smokescreen???

Smokescreen:  a cloud of smoke created to conceal military operations; a ruse designed to disguise someone’s real intentions or activities.

Smoke and Mirrors … Trump’s most recent rude & crude tweets appear to have taken over the internet, airwaves, and every other communication venue.  I will address those in a later post, as I, too, have much to say about them, however … those tweets are NOT the most important news of the day.  In my last post, I informed you that your voting history is about to be made public information by the Trump administration, and now I have more news …

smokescreenAll week long, the big news has been the Senate’s so-called ‘health care’ bill, written by America’s #1 Obstructionist, Senator Mitch McConnell, with the assistance of only a handful of other senators. The bill, once revealed, showed that the Senate bill was just as egregious as was the House bill that passed the House in May.  In the Senate, however, it requires only three (3) republican senators to vote ‘nay’ and the bill is dead in the water.  As the week progressed, it became clear that the republicans would not have the votes to pass this abomination of a bill that would cost every single lower-to-middle class person in the country.  So, the vote was delayed, much to the chagrin of McConnell & Trump.

So what next?  Well, Congress is now on its week-long July 4th break, but Trumpty-Dumpty has a brilliant idea!  “If Republican Senators are unable to pass what they are working on now, they should immediately REPEAL, and then REPLACE at a later date!”  Excuse me?  Take away healthcare from some 20 million U.S. citizens and give nothing but a vague … “one of these days we might give you something”?  I leave it to your imagination what words initially came from these fingertips, words that I have since replaced with nicer ones. (I may have to have a new computer soon, as I have beaten this poor little Dell to death in the past 5 months!)

Congress is officially on break as of the close of Friday, and the Senate will return on Monday, 10 July for three weeks before taking a month-long break in August.  Must be nice, eh?

To legislate Trump’s ‘repeal, no replace’ plan would cause anywhere between 20 million and 32 million people to suddenly be cut off from affordable healthcare.  Trump and certain members of Congress claim that this is what their supporters want, that they ran on a platform of repealing ACA and that is what they must do, whether or not they can come up with a viable alternative.  I cry FOUL! Though not a Trump voter nor supporter, I am a voter, I am a citizen of this nation, and my voice counts just as much as does any single Trump supporter. And my voice says I do not wish to see one single person lose their medical insurance, have to pay higher premiums, or see a reduction in benefits.

The idea was apparently the brain-child of Senator Rand Paul of Kentucky, and is also supported by Senator Ben Sasse of Nebraska.  However, health industry officials are warning that overturning the existing law, which has extended insurance to roughly 20 million Americans and changed the rules under which insurance is offered across the country, would create chaos in a sector that accounts for one-sixth of the U.S. economy. The Kaiser Family Foundation polled this very approach back in March, and found only 19 percent of Americans favored repealing Obamacare first and then working to replace it. A 51% majority of Americans say they do not want ACA repealed at all, but simply prefer to work through the problems.

ACA  chart.pngOne theory is that repealing ACA now would force Democratic senators to work more closely with Republicans to craft a viable bill.  The fallacy in that, of course, is that the Republicans have made it clear they are gearing any health care bill toward the wealthy and to hell with the rest of us, and I cannot imagine that Democrats are going to compromise their values for that.  Even some of the high-ranking Republicans who have been working on the legislation rejected it as impractical, making it doubtful that they could even obtain the 51 votes required to repeal without replacing.

A group of Senate Republicans suggested Friday that McConnell should scale back or cancel the chamber’s month-long August recess, given the lack of progress they have made on not just health care but a tax-code overhaul, spending bills, the debt ceiling and a budget resolution. Personally, though I think a month-long recess is excessive, I would just as soon they stay on break throughout August and give us a break from their shenanigans.  Perhaps if they get a nice, long rest, they will be able to actually engage their brains and get something right in September.  Meanwhile, we must all hope that Trump doesn’t get a notion to repeal ACA on his own via ‘executive order’!!!

27 thoughts on “What’s Behind The Smokescreen???

  1. The complexities of this question will overwhelm anyone (self included) outside of the USA, but one thing we outsiders can rely on. If the bunch in the Whitehouse are in a hurry to get their ‘whatever’ through then it must be bad for the vast numbers of Americans.
    Always thinking of you guys
    Roger

    Liked by 1 person

    • I appreciate your thoughts, dear Roger. Yes, these are complex issues, and even with all my research I am not 100% clear on all, though I have a reasonably good understanding. But what’s worse is that far too many here, people who will be adversely affected, do not understand and are not making any effort to understand. They don’t even get the very basics, and it is so frustrating to hear them say “we just want Obamacare gone”, when they do not realize that thus far the administration, who promised “something better”, has not offered anything even remotely comparable. I still believe state-sponsored healthcare is the way to go. I’ve talked to friends in Australia, the UK and Canada, and while I can see that there are problems, it is still a better system than the one we have. Sigh.

      Liked by 1 person

      • From outside looking in, within the USA there is an inherent suspicion and subsequent antagonism to Government intervention in Life.
        Historically this actually is quite logical, The USA is populated by people whose ancestors left their homelands to start new lives away from, as they saw it, authoritarian regimes and be independent. Hence a worthy cultural inheritance, but if pushed can become knee-jerk.
        Of course without ‘Government’ in a 300,000,000 population, five time zone nation things would get ‘sticky’ but let’s ignore that contradiction for the moment!
        Add to that the feature which dare not speak its name in public (whisper) “one of ‘those’ people got into the Whitehouse” and you have an undignified stampede to ditch all legislation enacted in 8 years. Of course they can pretend it’s because it was ‘socialist’ legislation, but gee guys…we all know why, don’t we…uhh?
        Annndd, finally we have the big bucks fraternity who have their own pet idiot in the Whitehouse.
        ‘Perfect’ Storm. 😞

        Liked by 1 person

        • Yes, all good points, and it does, in fact, create a perfect storm. I wonder how the masses will feel when they find that they can no longer afford their insulin, their pregnancies are not covered, and oh, that heart attack? Sorry, it was a result of high blood pressure you had before … pre-existing condition, y’know. The one good thing that could come of it is that they wouldn’t be able to afford to reproduce … 😀

          Liked by 1 person

            • You are quite right about that, Roger! They are too narrowly focused on greed and how to attain more wealth and power to look at the wider picture, or to learn the lessons of history.

              Thank you, Roger … we spent a low-key day because my daughter Chris, who is a drummer with a competition Pipe & Drum band, had to play in a parade today and was gone most of the day. Now she is home and sleeping from the hours of marching in the hot sun, I am catching up on blog-stuff, and it’s a nice, peaceful day. 🙂

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  2. Jill, the whole repeal and replace efforts have been done in secret in the House and Senate. Per conservative pundit David Brooks, this is due to there is no overriding principles behind the mission of the GOP.

    Also, I have heard on more than one occasion that the Democrats did this with the ACA creation. But, that is not a true statement. There were many months of open meetings where Republicans were at the table. What is true when it came time for the vote, Republicans were told to vote no. Yet, the irony of all of this, is the ACA is largely based on a Republican idea that was actively promoted by Tea Party leadership to President Bush. Google “Senator Jim DeMint and Romneycare” and just read away. Americans are unaware of this and how complicit the GOP is in making it harder for the ACA to be successful. It is Machiavellian and that is a shame because Americans have suffered. Keith

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yes, I agree … and I am tired of hearing how Obama did the same with ACA, because that was many months in the making, and as you say, with open meetings, and I’m sure more input from experts in the field than McConnell & Co have consulted. What galls me the most is there seems to be no conscience, no remorse for the millions of lives … taxpayer/citizen lives. Of course his supporters still fail to realize that this is going to adversely affect them too. And they are mean about it … somebody told me on Facebook earlier today that she hoped I got run down by a car!!! Sheesh … what are people turning into over this?
      And, I heard that Dean Heller who said he could not vote for this bill was greeted with jeers, taunts and rage when he returned to his home state of Nevada. Personally, I would have applauded him!

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      • You should tell them if you were run over by a car this year, you would know you have coverage. By the way, there were some pretty sharp folks working on the ACA. I do not get that same sense from the GOP plan, yet how would we know.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Dear Jill,
    Why is it that those who are so blessed just want more, and that sharing the spoils with all who have contributed their part to help this already great country become more prosperous, successful and productive is an incomprehensible concept? Mr. Rand Paul is a follower of the quintessential libertarian and author Ayn Rand who posted this quote in the appendix of her book, “Atlas Shrugged:
    “My philosophy, in essence, is the concept of man as a heroic being, with his own happiness as the moral purpose of his life, with productive achievement as his noblest activity, and reason as his only absolute. .
    He had developed a reputation as being a policy wonk, but frankly, I am have not seen this side of him.

    Hugs, Gronda

    Liked by 1 person

    • I’m still not quite sure what to make of Paul Ryan. I have always thought that somewhere deep down he had compassion and humanity, but he has been such a boot-licker of late that … I’m just not sure he’s any better than Mitch McConnell. You can be the best person in the world, but if you do not have the courage to stand by your convictions, then you are not a good person at all.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Rand Paul is a little too condescending for my taste. Plus his stance on the Senate healthcare bill not going far enough flies in the face of the ACA success in Kentucky. As for Paul Ryan, he is very disappointing to not pull in Democrats like John Boehner. His one shining moment was after Steve Scalise was shot.

        Liked by 1 person

        • I agree with you, Keith, on both Rand Paul and Paul Ryan. I have always felt that Ryan was a good man … somewhere down in there … and perhaps he once was, but now I believe that he has sold his soul for what he believes, likely erroneously, Trump can/will do for him. Also, I saw tonight that he mocked an elderly man who was protesting at one of his Town Hall meetings, and frankly, that just doesn’t sit well with me!

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