Tuesday, November 17, 2009

1,0000+ Page Health Care Bill has Unhealthy Ammendments

In case a Republican hasn't thrown it at you yet, the health care bill is over 1,000 pages, you should probably start reading up on the bill now. This bill has given random elected officials their day in the sun, from Olympia Snow to Max Baucus, and now Orrin Hatch and Bart Stupak. Hatch has introduced an amendment titled "Religious Non-discrimination in Health Care," and is co-sponsored by John Kerry. Stupak has introduced "the Stupak Amendment," which strictly limits any indirect or direct federal funding of abortions. Both of these amendments are in the House bill that passed, and both are in the Senate bill that is up for debate.

Orrin Hatch, Republican from Utah, and John Kerry, Democrat from Massachusetts, have literally formed an unholy alliance. Under pressure from their Christian Scientist constituents, both Congressmen have decided that the government should pay for prayer. That's right. The new health care bill includes coverage for prayer services. This wouldn't even exist, except for the fact that both Senators' states have large populations of people that don't believe in modern medicine. Christian Scientists believe that the world is an illusion, that all you need is faith to heal yourself, and that taking medicine is a showing lack of faith. Several states and insurance companies already pay for "doctor visits" for the Christian Scientists, which amount to twenty-dollar prayer services. You know, "please Lord, stop making us believe this garbage and give my baby with cancer chemo..." The major problems with this amendment are that "faith healing" costs could sky rocket, and that the amendment is so broad that almost anything can be shown as faith healing. Attention all stoners; this means your bong sessions could be covered if you BELIEVE that pot heals you. There has been a minor uproar about this amendment throughout the skeptical movement, but not enough to remove this retarded vestigial organ.

Bart Stupak is a Democratic Congressman from Michigan. He felt is was necessary to create an amendment to the Health Care Bill that banned Federal funding for abortions. Stupak didn't care that the bill already had zero funds for abortions in it, and that a previous law had already banned abortions! No! Stupak wanted his day in the sun, and he got burned. What the amendment makes sure is that the Federal government doesn't allow any insurance plan with abortion coverage to be offered with the bill or with Medicare, Medicaid, etc. Basically, if you want to have the public option, you won't get abortions covered in your health insurance plan. So to all you women that a. can't afford insurance in the first place, and b. have an unwanted pregnancy, be prepared to save up five hundred dollars and walk through picketed protesters even if you get the public option in three years. The problem with the amendment is what it forces insurance companies to do; make one type of plan with abortions covered, and one without. Many women's rights activists are claiming that this will be too much work on the insurance industry, which will just eliminate abortion coverage altogether. Another major problem is that poor women who are unable to provide for a child, will be unable to get an abortion simply because some religious people think a first, second, or third trimester fetus is an actual American citizen.

The reason why Stupak's amendment passed in the first place; overwhelming Republican support, has come back to hilariously haunt those that voted for it. The Republicans have, for eighteen years, had an insurance policy which covered abortions. When that news came out last week, the GOP dropped their plan, and changed it to one without abortion coverage. Smart move, except that they didn't switch health care providers, so technically, they are still paying for abortions, just not directly. Stay tuned on that front.

The Stupak amendment looks like it will not make it into the final bill, mainly because of women's rights activists and a petition signed by forty Democratic Congressmen and women claiming that they will not vote for a bill with this amendment attached. The Kerry-Hatch amendment has received much less hoopla and has a much greater chance of surviving the final vote; if there is one. So call, email, write, and visit your elected officials and tell them what you think and why you think it. Hopefully more garbage like these two amendments will not be allowed into this bill, and hopefully every piece of trash already in the bill gets thrown out. Stay skeptical, keep reading, and thanks for your support!

The Political Atheist

Monday, November 9, 2009

A View from the Real Right

The majority of this blog's posts have leaned, if not fallen over, to the left. But I have said that Political Atheism is not just one view. And it isn't. It's time for the Right to have a voice. The views in this post may be interpreted as extremely negative, so here is your fair warning. This is my opinion.

Ron Paul says, "I have heard that people will be slaves as long as they are well fed and entertained," at the end of his book The Revolution, a Manifesto. Though he disagrees with this statement, I think it rings all too true. The most popular parts of American culture; fast food, reality TV, pop music, movies, and professional sports are all giant industries in which the main goal is simply entertainment and instant gratification. The average American is bombarded by advertisements though out the day, everyday. Ads tell Americans what to eat, drink, wear, play, watch; what to want in every aspect of life.

All the while, voter turn out is low, few people pay attention to their government and most assume it is so corrupt that there is nothing they can do. But this is the United States. Public libraries contain free access to knowledge and the Internet. Free schools provide educational opportunities to every child, no matter how poorly funded and under-run some actually are. The point is that people in America have the freedom to try and do whatever they want to do. Most of them just choose to plop in front of the TV and let NBC, CBS, ABC, and Fox tell them what to like, love, hate, etc...

Atheism is not a secret society. You don't have to be initiated or invited; you just have to learn the truth for yourself and you're in. This is the same with conservative intellectualism. Once you realize that everyone has a chance to make something of themselves, yet they choose not to, you stop caring about them and care only for your own. If the majority of people without health insurance aren't marching on Capitol Hill in favor of reform, then why pass it? Why try to help those who don't want to be helped and couldn't care less if they were helped? After all, a health reform protester on Capitol Hill recently suffered a heart attack at a rally. He was treated by the Congressional Health Staff, the definition of government run health care! Just keep showing those sweet ads during the Superbowl.

This form of atheism can manifest itself out of nihilism and conservatism. Since life has basically no meaning, other than what you make of it, and there is no afterlife or final judgement or god; it becomes very easy to say 'I am going to make this the best possible life I can for myself and those I love, and screw everyone who gets in my way.' It is even easier to do those necessary tasks when you realize that people don't even care about them, as long as they are well fed and entertained.

The average American is extremely uneducated in the basic history of our universe, solar system, planet, and species. The majority of them don't even want to know about those things. They want to say "God has a plan" and other expressions that absolve them or others of events and place them in a mystical realm where they will never be explained. The majority of Americans believe in God. 92% of them. The vast majority of those are Christian. Read the Bible and tell me that thing's story is anywhere close to the factual history of our universe.

So we have a recipe for a conservative mindset; no purpose to life, no one cares, people don't want responsibility, and most people think that they will go to Heaven regardless of what horror happens on this life. There is only one problem. Not only do open atheists make up around 8% of the country, they are vastly liberal. The majority of conservative atheists have to cover their non-belief up. And they do it to get a base. The conservative intellectuals have made a pact with the devil; supporting the religious right. As long as the political movement's base is obsessed with what other people do in privacy and is pushing its religious garbage, the real conservative movement can push its own agenda.

The Earth cannot remain suitable for humans on a wide scale. The very first life forms to dominate the planet, primitive bacteria, wiped themselves out because they created an oxygen rich atmosphere that suffocated them. Life's goal is not to regulate itself, it is multiply. Generate more life, enough to survive and make more life. People are concerned with saving species that are incapable of surviving in an ever changing world, one that has seen 99% of its species go extinct. Species are transient. They are not stepping stones, but bleed into one another in a blur of sexual reproduction. There is no such thing as "save the Earth," it is "save the Humans." Why help those species unfit for reproduction and adaptation on their own? Why save people incapable of saving themselves?

But the conservative plan is not to get rid of humans that are not genetically ideal. The plan has to do with money of course. A man that can't see gets glasses. A woman with confidence problems gets implants. A child gets braces and grandpa gets hip surgery. Human inadequacies are not problems that need to disappear, but business opportunities to generate an economy based on flawed creatures. Health care is 20% of the American economy. That doesn't include daily toiletries and other basic components of an "imperfect creature economy."

Capitalizing on the majority's physical weaknesses is only the beginning. Major corporations use psychology to manipulate the consumers into wanting the wrong things. Coca-Cola should have a huge stake in dental health care equipment manufacturers. There are countless examples in which the basic flaws of humanity are exploited for the financial gain of the conservative intellectuals. And what is wrong with that? Would people rather be weeded out through natural selection or even worse; genetically modified humans?

As long as people financially support those companies that don't care about them, the conservative movement wins. You buy Nike shoes, you support $1 a day sweatshops in southeast Asia. Wear Abercrombie, you support sweatshops in China. Major corporations do not care about the average consumer and it makes perfect since why they don't. The average consumer doesn't even care about his or her own self. They care about their favorite fictional character, their local football team, and every other ridiculous and truly worthless invented problem and form of entertainment. If you want to change the world you live in, and don't agree with this post, then stop supporting the major corporations that you allow to screw you over. It is incredibly hard to convince people to help those that do not want help. There are really only two choices; wake everyone up from their self-induced comas, or join the dark side. The choice is yours and good luck with either. Stay skeptical.

The Political Atheist

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Fox News' Judge Andrew Napolitano: Factually Challenged


If you ever flip over to the Fox News channel, you will undoubtedly run into Judge Andrew Napolitano. In his most recent opinion article, in his second sentence, he jumps right into the lies. He states that the health care bill "will raise your taxes, steal your freedom, invade your privacy, and ration your health care." He must mean that by 'rationing' your health care, you actually get it for the first time. Your 'ration' will increase from zero to one.

Napolitano goes on to say that "if passed, [the health care bill] will compel employers to provide coverage, bribe the states to change their court rules, and tell insurance companies whom to insure." He acts like those are all horrible world ending scenarios! He thinks companies shouldn't want their employees to be healthy; when the employer mandate is essential to health care reform, and stops companies from abusing their employees' well being in favor of a buck. It's also not called a 'bribe' when states change their laws from allowing health insurance companies to screw over their constituents, to making it illegal to refuse someone for a pre-existing condition and stripping the industry's anti-trust exemptions. Because outlawing denial for "pre-existing conditions" would, according to the Judge, "tell insurance companies whom to insure." Yeah, like everyone who can afford their rates.

Here's where Napolitano drops the bomb; "We do not have two political parties in this country, America. We have one party..." the Democrats. And this is simply because the Republicans are infighting and falling into the religious right, where their top three candidates for the Presidential election are; a guy who thinks Jesus came back to life in Missouri and turned every one's skin red that didn't believe he was the son of some god in Mitt Romney, a woman who thinks the Earth is six thousand years old in Sarah Palin, and a guy who thinks the Bible is the literal word of some god in Mike Huckabee. They make up twenty percent of the country and are pushing the conservatives in the party further to the right. The election of the 23rd congressional district of New York is the most recent and perfect example of Republican infighting causing them to lose seats.

Napolitano finally tries to drag the health care debate into a general theory of how each party is pro big-government in terrible ways. He says that Democrats want "wealth transfer, taxes, and assaults on commercial liberties." "Commercial liberties" is the best euphemism for "the ability to screw people over" that I have ever heard. The phrase almost makes it sound like a bad thing. He claims that both parties are in a plot to control your every aspect of life, and that
"the government wants you to follow the will of some faceless bureaucrat." Yeah, who wants to follow the policy that every one's elected officials voted for in the first place? The judge makes it sound like we don't even have the freedom to run for office, or help get someone elected, or even vote!

This is a cheap trick that some people play when trying to convince others. Anthropomorphising gigantic corporations and the government in order to make you feel a certain way about them, like that they are out to get you, when in reality you have every ability to be out to get them. You buy the products and you vote for the candidates. He says that "Congress recognizes no limits on its power." Is he forgetting that they let Presidents go to war without voting on it? That was a right fundamentally given to Congress, and "it" gave it away. There is no it. The House is so big and filled with people who shouldn't be there but represent their district well. The Senate is designed to be inefficient and slow. There does, however, need to be campaign finance reform to stop people like Joe Lieberman from staying the Senator from Aetna.

Napolitano ends with an amazing oxymoron; Congress "doesn’t even read the laws it writes." Have you ever written anything blindfolded? This is Judge Andrew Napolitano's opinion, and it is misleading and wrong. This is the kind of hot garbage that comes out of Fox News everyday. It is cycled and recycled on conservative websites like Prison Planet and Info Wars. Fox News is not news. Alex Jones is not news. Check your sources, always.

The Political Atheist