Saturday, December 29, 2007

The real goal of Shock and Awe in Iraq

I'm reading Shock Doctrine by Naomi Klein right now, and it's a very enlightening look at the U.S. involvement and how Milton Friedman's economic theories have played a role across the globe. Iraq was the ultimate testing ground for the theories Friedman espoused. As we now know, the experiment has gone very badly and has been a catastrophe for U.S. foreign policy.

Friday, December 28, 2007

3.3 Million MoveOn Members Target Joe Knollenberg

Joe Knollenberg is one of the most vulnerable members of Congress. We will have a strong, well funded candidate that will finally flip the 9th Congressional District of Michigan to the Democratic column and help turn this country around.

To help, please consider donating at Peters for Congress. There is no coordination of effort between MoveOn and the Peters campaign. However, Joe Knollenberg is one of the races that MoveOn has targeted in the 2008 election cycle.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Joe, Santa could use your help to bring them home for Christmas

I'm getting to spend the holidays with my granddaughter, so I know how special it would be if all of our soldiers serving in Iraq, Afghanistan and around the world could spend the holidays with their spouses and children, the way it was meant to be. We can do it. Our soldiers have done all they can in Iraq. Let's show some real family values and reunite our service men and women with their families. Not one more Christmas in Iraq.

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Joe, this is why we need, single-payer, universal health care

(From Many people have followed the horrifying story of Nataline Sarkisyan. She was denied a liver transplant by health care giant CIGNA because they called it “experimental.”

Play video

CIGNA has ignored this medical decision and calls the transplant “experimental” as justification for denying the treatment. CIGNA’s refusal of Nataline’s liver transplant—overruling the urgent appeals of an array of doctors and nurses—is indicative of the failures of the new healthcare plan sponsored by Arnold Schwarzenegger and Fabian Nunez. That plan, which is actively supported by CIGNA, requires every single Californian to purchase insurance products from companies like CIGNA, but does not address the problem of denial of care evident in this situation.

After a protest led by the California Nurses Association along with family and friends turned the heat up on CIGNA, they finally approved the life saving procedure, but…

In a stunning turn around, insurance giant CIGNA has capitulated to community demands, and protests that the California Nurses Association/National Nurses Organizing Committee helped to generate, and agreed to a critically needed liver transplant for Nataline Sarkisyan, a 17-year-old girl in the intensive care unit at UCLA Medical Center…

…they acted too late and she died.

The California Nurses Association/National Nurses Organizing Committee today blasted insurance giant CIGNA for failing to approve a liver transplant one week earlier for listen to 17-year-old Nataline Sarkisyan, who tragically died last night just hours after CIGNA relented and agreed to the procedure following a massive national outcry.

An editorial by the Houston Chronical called CIGNA’s decision to deny the teen a liver transplant until it was too late “Heartless.”

As California and the nation debate how to institute universal health insurance coverage for citizens, the Sarkisyan case indicates that more must be done than simply covering everyone with a policy. All too frequently, insurance company bureaucrats are making medical judgments that should be left in the hands of a patient’s physician…

If the staff at the UCLA transplant unit approved Nataline’s procedure, that should have been the end of the discussion. For universal health coverage to be meaningful, such decisions must be taken out of the hands of insurance adjustors and placed with an impartial arbiter whose interest is the welfare of the patient rather than a corporation’s balance sheet.

Will the tragedy that struck Nataline Sarkisyan and her family because health care giant CIGNA initially refused a life saving medical treatment become an important story for the voters in Iowa as they begin the process that will determine which candidate will represent each party in the upcoming Presidential election?

Republican voters may face the same situation as the Sarkisyan’s. The CIGNA’s of the world could care less if a family filled out a GOP loyalty oath or did the Pledge of allegiance to President Bush...

Monday, December 24, 2007

Trent Wisecup - The Gift that keeps giving (Crain's)

I found this little gem in Crain's Detroit Business.

Gifts we hope will keep on giving
Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick and U.S. Rep. Joe Knollenberg: New press aides. Though hailing from different political parties, these guys share at least one thing in common: Both had press aides flame out in spectacular fashion during 2007. Kilpatrick aide Matt Allen was out after his arrest for domestic violence in November. Knollenberg aide Trent Wisecup had been sending bizarre emails to news media for months before he left the congressman's office. What took so long?