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#1327 Aug 17 2016 at 8:24 AM Rating: Good
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Looks like Aetna is dropping a majority of their Affordable Care Act coverage, projected to annoy some people but overall not actually cause a problem. Predictably, one side cites it as evidence that it can't work, while the other says it could lead to more support for the program.

Edited, Aug 17th 2016 10:57am by lolgaxe
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#1328 Aug 17 2016 at 9:36 AM Rating: Excellent
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There's also (from reading) a strong argument to be made that Aetna's decision is partially out of spite that the Obama administration blocked a merger they were attempting.
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#1329 Aug 17 2016 at 4:20 PM Rating: Good
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Jophiel wrote:
There's also (from reading) a strong argument to be made that Aetna's decision is partially out of spite that the Obama administration blocked a merger they were attempting.

"Because otherwise we'd lose a bunch of money" =/= "spite"
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#1330 Aug 17 2016 at 4:35 PM Rating: Good
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Demea wrote:
Jophiel wrote:
There's also (from reading) a strong argument to be made that Aetna's decision is partially out of spite that the Obama administration blocked a merger they were attempting.

"Because otherwise we'd lose a bunch of money" =/= "spite"


"Because you wouldn't let us merge" does though, right?
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#1331 Aug 17 2016 at 4:48 PM Rating: Excellent
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Demea wrote:
Jophiel wrote:
There's also (from reading) a strong argument to be made that Aetna's decision is partially out of spite that the Obama administration blocked a merger they were attempting.
"Because otherwise we'd lose a bunch of money" =/= "spite"

"Because you wouldn't let us merger" does though.
LA Times wrote:
Aetna’s announcement this week that it was pulling out of most of the states where it was serving the Obamacare individual exchanges was a head-scratcher; after all, just three months earlier, Chief Executive Mark Bertolini was calling its participation in the market “a good investment,” despite near-term losses.

Bertolini also had tried to tamp down speculation that its withdrawal was anything like a payback for the government’s move to block its $37-billion merger with Humana. That was “a separate conversation” from its evaluation of the exchange business, he said during an Aug. 2 conference call with Wall Street analysts.

Now evidence has emerged that Aetna was lying. The smoking gun is a July 5 letter from Bertolini to Ryan Kantor of the Justice Department, unearthed by Jonathan Cohn and Jeffrey Young of the Huffington Post via a Freedom of Information Act request. In the letter, sent before the DOJ formally announced it would sue to block the Humana deal, Bertolini explicitly ties the two issues together.
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#1332 Aug 17 2016 at 4:52 PM Rating: Excellent
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Trump's campaign apparently found a new way to cope with losing.
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#1333 Aug 17 2016 at 5:06 PM Rating: Good
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That is just... sad. Almost enough to not be laughable.
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#1334 Aug 17 2016 at 5:21 PM Rating: Excellent
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I dunno. I've watched it about ten times now and still laugh. That look on her face the second time she says "All of them" is too much.

Speaking earlier of the Benghazi parents, the guy who wrote the mother's RNC speech is now saying he can't vote for Trump and may, in fact, vote for Clinton.
Quote:
I am a lifelong political animal and a longtime Maryland Republican. I worked on the staffs of Maryland Congresswoman Helen Bentley and Congressman/Gov. Bob Ehrlich. I also served on the GOP staff of the House Financial Services Committee.
[...]
In fact, I personally drafted the speech of the "Benghazi mom," Patricia Smith. In that speech, I concluded with the following line: "If Hillary Clinton can't give us the truth, why should we give her the presidency?" As a political speechwriter, that was something of a home run moment for me. The New Yorker called the speech "the weaponization of grief."

But weeks after the end of the 2016 GOP convention, I am confronted by an inconvenient fact: Despite what I wrote in that nationally televised speech about Hillary Clinton, I may yet have to vote for her because of the epic deficiencies of my own party's nominee.
[...]
To choose otherwise embraces fear, as Donald Trump has chosen to do. Fear sometimes wins you elections, but it doesn't create jobs, build schools, reduce crime or improve the quality of life for all citizens. Great political leaders help us transcend our fears.

Still, the prospect of voting for Hillary Clinton is uncomfortable to me, as if Dr. Van Helsing were compelled to vote for Dracula.

But the only prospect more terrifying than voting for Hillary Clinton is not voting for her.


Edited, Aug 17th 2016 6:23pm by Jophiel
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#1335 Aug 17 2016 at 7:28 PM Rating: Decent
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Almalieque wrote:
Gbaji wrote:
To be fair though, when assessing the potential quality of a presidential candidate, you kinda can't judge based on their previous work as president. You can, however, look at their actions and interactions, policy decisions, pull and sway (or lack thereof), and any of a number of other things from past jobs they have held, especially those at a high level in government service. It's somewhat of a cop out to just declare her record as SoS irrelevant because she had a boss higher than her in the chain.
So, we can only attack Sec. Kerry if he is running for president?


You're brain literally works backwards. Of course we *can* attack Sec. Kerry whether he's running for president or not. The question isn't when we can attack someone for their record. The question is whether you attack someone for their past record when they are running for president. The answer is: yes.

You start with a politician running for office. You then look through their past and see if there's some part of their record that might negatively (or positively if you're trying to support their run). Then you talk about that thing. Your argument is like saying that just because NASA pays more attention to the weather over the Cape in the 24 hours prior to a launch that no one's allowed to talk about weather any other time. Um... No. They just care about it more when they're trying to launch a rocket.

In the same way, we care more about a politicians past record when they're running for a new (especially higher) office. I mean, we could randomly at any point in time bring up any of a number of mistakes or unintended consequences of any of a very very large number of elected and appointed people's actions, but then we'd be spending a hundred hours every day talking about stuff. Sometimes, you pick the right time to bring something up. And the right time, in this case, is when that person is asking to hold a high public office.

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As long as he's not running for president, then it's president Obama's and Sec. Clinton's fault?


Again, not getting it. When someone is running for office is when you look at their past decisions. That other people, who are not currently running for office may also have been involved in those decisions, or even made worse ones, isn't the point.

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I'm sorry, but you lose all credibility with that line of thinking.


Tell that to the entire field of political pundits then. It's not like this is some new or strange thing or anything. Why attack someone's record who *isn't* running? That seems like a waste of effort during an election cycle.
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#1336 Aug 17 2016 at 7:31 PM Rating: Decent
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Before, I thought gbaji was nuts for calling Trump a liberal plant. I'm not so sure anymore.


Hmmm... You don't say? And yes, I'm going to go there. Interesting that folks in the media are now saying stuff like "We went easy on Trump when he was running in the GOP primary, but now that he's running for president, our consciences demand that we speak up about all the bad things about him". Yeah... Some of us saw this pattern a year ago.
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#1337 Aug 17 2016 at 7:45 PM Rating: Decent
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So Gbaji, what's your call for the election?

Is Trump going to win? Will the GOP keep the senate?


Eh? No clue. You do recall I said months ago, that I just plan on drinking heavily, right? IMO, both candidates are horrific choices who will cause much pain for us all. It's really a choice between the devil you know and the devil you don't know at this point. We know how Clinton will run things. She'll sell power and influence to those with the right connections and willingness to pad her own pockets and profile. She'll pay lip service to whatever cause or organization comes along and she thinks will make her look good. I honestly don't think she really cares about any sort of agenda or direction. Classic definition of a politician for sale.

Trump on the other hand, is either also just a guy willing to blow in the wind or he's got his own ideas and agenda. Who knows? So far, it looks like he just plays lip service to whatever groups he thinks will support him in return. There is, I suppose, a small chance that his years of being on the other side of the pay to play power structure has given him insight into how the game is played, and maybe he's actually fed up with it and wants to do things "his way". Of course, do we know what "his was" actually entails? Not really. But I suspect he's going to be less likely to effectively sell his power and influence than Clinton will. His poor choices will be more likely to be his own rather than the highest bidder, but who knows?

Yup. Buying more vodka seems like a good strategy at this point.
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#1338 Aug 17 2016 at 7:56 PM Rating: Good
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gbaji wrote:
Uglysasquatch wrote:
Before, I thought gbaji was nuts for calling Trump a liberal plant. I'm not so sure anymore.


Hmmm... You don't say? And yes, I'm going to go there. Interesting that folks in the media are now saying stuff like "We went easy on Trump when he was running in the GOP primary, but now that he's running for president, our consciences demand that we speak up about all the bad things about him". Yeah... Some of us saw this pattern a year ago.

Wait, you think the liberal media (and only the liberal media) are all in on this conspiracy as well?

Also, they didn't "go easy" on Trump. Rather, they resisted covering him as a serious candidate for a while, because they thought he was a so terrible and unserious of a candidate with no chance of winning that it wasn't proper to devote so much time to him. And then when he started winning primaries, he started getting tons of coverage, because he and his rise were so shocking, and the coverage reflected his awfulness. I don't think your story holds water at all (you know, not even getting into your nutballs possibility of a conspiracy that thousands are keeping secret).



Edited, Aug 17th 2016 9:02pm by trickybeck
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#1339 Aug 17 2016 at 7:59 PM Rating: Excellent
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Clinton wins, Democrats take Senate.

It's funny that, for someone who always gives long lectures on how polling should work and what we're all so foolishly forgetting during elections, you're so afraid to just take a stance on how it'll shake out.

Oh, and speaking of election guesses, I'll note that Smash paid up his bet to me regarding Clinton's primary run via a sweet Hillary Clinton paper doll book Smiley: laugh
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#1340 Aug 17 2016 at 8:02 PM Rating: Excellent
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Regarding the "Trump is a liberal plant!" conspiracy theory: Does this mean that figures like Christie, Giuliani, Gingrich, Manafort, Hannity, Bannon, Coulter, etc are all in on this or are they all just morons being played for saps by the Liberal Conspiracy Machine?
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#1341 Aug 17 2016 at 8:05 PM Rating: Good
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Jophiel wrote:
Regarding the "Trump is a liberal plant!" conspiracy theory: Does this mean that figures like Christie, Giuliani, Gingrich, Manafort, Hannity, Bannon, Coulter, etc are all in on this or are they all just morons being played for saps by the Liberal Conspiracy Machine?

If the liberal media and political string-pullers were this brilliantly predictive, competent, and manipulative, then how have they lost so many elections recently? Like...everything went exactly according to plan, apparently.
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#1342 Aug 18 2016 at 7:57 AM Rating: Good
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gbaji wrote:
You do recall I said months ago, that I just plan on drinking heavily, right?
I remember you saying you'd rather vote for Clinton.
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#1344 Aug 18 2016 at 9:23 AM Rating: Good
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Trump donates to the Hillary Clinton Campaign ... kind of.
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#1345 Aug 18 2016 at 9:27 AM Rating: Excellent
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And all she wanted was some ear bling... Smiley: oyvey

More importantly shouldn't she have someone who has someone who can buy stuff for her? What is with these rich people these days? Seriously slacking...

Edited, Aug 18th 2016 8:29am by someproteinguy
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#1346 Aug 18 2016 at 11:29 AM Rating: Good
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Proceeds off of an $84 peice of jewelery, split 3 ways. That'll go far...
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#1347 Aug 18 2016 at 4:23 PM Rating: Good
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The letter was specifically requested by the DoJ to solicit Aetna's likely course of action should the merger be blocked. They honestly replied that they would seek to reduce losses in the insurance exchanges. I don't see how it's a threat so much as honestly assessing, and executing, sound business strategy, especially since Aetna has carried plenty of water for Obamacare since before it was passed.

But if you're predisposed to think that anything negatively affecting the law's livelihood is spiteful, I suppose I understand why you perceive it that way.
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#1348 Aug 18 2016 at 4:47 PM Rating: Excellent
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Right. Or, you know, because I'm literate and can read the whole article.

And I never said it was 100% spite, but it sure looks as though that helped.

"If you're predisposed to be against the law though... blah, blah, blah..."
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#1349 Aug 18 2016 at 7:19 PM Rating: Excellent
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Gbaji wrote:

You start with a politician running for office.
No, you start with the person at fault. Starting with the person running for office only validates that your intent is political.
#1350 Aug 18 2016 at 7:39 PM Rating: Good
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LAWYERED!
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#1351 Aug 19 2016 at 8:07 AM Rating: Good
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Uglysasquatch wrote:
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It's the thought that counts.

Pole vaulter loses event, wins at life.

Edited, Aug 19th 2016 10:11am by lolgaxe
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