The House passed a bill 392-37 with strong bipartisan support which permanently eliminates Medicare’s flawed payment formula known as the Sustainable Growth Rate (SGR). For over ten years, the SGR has been a source of pain for lawmakers, doctors and healthcare advocates. The SGR would have led to huge Medicare payment cuts to doctors if congress had not instituted an annual formula patch known as the “doc fix’. If the “doc fix” had not been in place, many doctors would have had to turn away Medicare patients. Lawmakers have been trying to get rid of the SGR for years but there was never a consensus on how to fund a permanent replacement. The new plan allocates payment based on the quality of a doctor’s care vs. the quantity of patients he sees. Doctor payments will increase 0.5% for the first five years with the opportunity to receive extra payments by signing up for the merit based system.
The $210 billion bill is funded through a combination of higher Medicare payments for wealthy seniors and hospital payment cuts. The bill increases the deficit by $141 billion over the next ten years according to the Congressional Budget Office. The bill includes a two year funding extension for the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) and low income community health centers.
- Written by Nicholas Short
“The U.S. Army is the biggest joke the world has to laugh at. It is the army of liars, backstabbers, fools and bullies. I am ashamed to be an American. The horror of the self-righteous arrogance that they thrive in. It is all revolting”.
These were the words written by Bowe Bergdahl to his family on June 27th 2009, three days before he deserted his post in Afghanistan and into the hands of the Taliban.
Fast forward five years to May 31st as news headlines broke informing the public that President Barack Obama, acting unilaterally, had made a deal to trade five high-ranking Taliban officials held in Guantanamo Bay for a deserter, Bowe Bergdahl.
While the administration attempted to spin the truth of the deal, the fact remains that the deal was actually the result of a culmination of negotiations that first began in January 2013 in Washington under a Joint Statement on Peace and Reconciliation.
- Written by Leonora Cravotta
Obama traded five Taliban generals for Bowe Bergdahl who fellow platoon members argue is a traitor. According to Sen. John McCain as many as 14 military personnel lost their lives searching for Bergdahl before his father, Bob Bergdahl tweeted on 05/28/14 "I am still working to free all Guantanamo prisoners. God will repay for the death of every Afghan child, ameen!" Was President Obama's prisoner swap that bypassed Congressional oversight and approval an act of treason that went as far as to negotiate with terrorists in a way to conceal efforts to fulfill a campaign promise and close GITMO at any cost? Look at the feel good news story of a POW release after five years of captivity over here while five Taliban generals waltz out of Cuba as heroes over there, and of course, the mainstream media will provide the cover. Thank god for the internet and the fact that the American people are not as "stupid" as the liberal elite, Obama administration and the Grubers of the world would like to think! BTW, Has anyone ever asked where we keep ISIS prisoners now that we're on a mission to fight back against the terror group with a so-called 60 country coalition, or is this nothing more than a charade, smoke and mirror dog and pony show one sees at a circus? (Intro: Scott Adams - buglecall.org)
- Written by Leonora Cravotta
Rand Paul stole the fire from fellow GOP candidate Ted Cruz’s 2016 presidential announcement earlier this week. Senator Cruz is the first GOP candidate to formally his run for the 2016 GOP ticket. In a moment which should have belonged to the Texas Senator, he found himself sharing the limelight with his Kentucky rival. Paul jumped into the Cruz announcement by questioning his electability. During an interview with Fox’s Megyn Kelly Paul criticized Cruz for having limited appeal beyond the conservative base. “It isn't just about rousing a base. It's about exciting the base by being for the principles of liberty, but it's then taking those principles of liberty — not diluting them — and taking them to new people and bringing them into the party. That's the way you win general elections." Paul also praised his supporters who showed up in Paul tee-shirts at Cruz’s speech at Liberty University. The Cruz campaign tried to dismiss Paul’s comments as a deliberate distraction to draw attention away from the Cruz announcement.
- Written by Rod Eccles
Some may think that I hate our current President. I don't hate President Obama. I could never hate the man. It is not his fault he is in the position of power that he is in. It is ours. The American people.
I don't hate the American people. I love them. I understand them.
With that said, I also understand the position that is the Presidency of the United States of America. I understand the back room deals that must happen on a daily basis. I understand the weight that power puts on the bearer of those in power. I understand how they must lie, cheat, steal, manipulate and even kill in order to stay in power.
Power is nothing more than a drug. It can consume a person not unlike heroin or even marijuana. It’s addictive. It’s all consuming. Many humans cannot control it. Indeed, most of us cannot control it. Once we taste it, power, we want more. It is amazing that there are those who do not want power. They will do anything to avoid power.
They are smart.
President Obama used the five year anniversary of the Affordable Care Act to lambast the proposed House GOP budget and call on the Act’s critics who are largely Republicans to “embrace reality”. “Instead of trying yet again to repeal the Affordable Care Act and allowing special interests to write their own rules, we should work together to keep improving our healthcare system for everybody”, the President remarked. President Obama called the Affordable Care Act a success, referencing the 16 million people who now have health insurance as a result of the Act who did not have it before. He also praised the program with improving the overall quality of health care, crediting it as the main reason that there were “50,000 fewer preventable patient deaths in hospitals over the last three years of data.” President Obama also rallied against the perception that Obamacare is detrimental to the economy and the job market with the argument that in the last year the growth in healthcare premium costs for businesses was at parity to the lowest year on record. Without the Affordable Care Act, “the average family premium would be $1,800 higher than it is today,” The President also pointed out that reducing healthcare costs is the most important driver of reducing the federal deficit.