All of the female Democratic senators signed a secret letter to Hillary Rodham Clinton early this year encouraging her to run for president in 2016 – a letter that includes the signature of Sen. Elizabeth Warren and other senators who are mentioned as potential candidates, two high-ranking Democratic Senate aides told ABC News.
The letter, organized at the urging of Sen. Barbara Boxer, D-Calif., was meant to be a private show of support from a group of 16 high-profile former colleagues and fans who are now senators, urging Clinton to do what much of the Democratic Party assumes she will, the aides said.
The existence of the letter was not revealed publicly until this week, when Sen. Kay Hagan, D-N.C., mentioned it at an event in New York City on Monday. That was an apparent slip-up that prompted a round of apologetic e-mails from her Senate office to other offices on Capitol Hill, according to the aides.
Now, to be fair, just because Warren signed a letter encouraging Hillary to run doesn't mean she can't run herself. Read below the fold...
Obama's HAMP program, if you remember, was sold as helping homeowners to avoid foreclosure, but ended up "foaming the runway" for the big banks and leaving the homeowners worse off than before. From back in 2010:
HAMP leaves 95% of borrower in a worse negative equity position than before.
And quoting Credit Slips:
[T]he message to take away from HAMP is that the Obama administration just isn’t serious about helping homeowners. The plight of distressed homeowners is subsidiary to protecting the banks from having to take serious write-downs.
And not that I'm foily, but ObamaCare was sold as helping people without health insurance, was designed to "foam the runway" for the health insurance companies by forcing people to buy their defective product, and hard evidence is beginning to emerge that the plans are crappy.
And getting down to cases, there's the phone support. You remember that one of the many problem of healthcare.gov has been duplicate accounts? From today's putative WaPo blockbuster, all the way down at the end, here's how the Federal phone centers are handling that problem: Read below the fold...
ObamaCare Clusterfuck: Will the administration slip its self-imposed November 30 deadline for fixing healthcare.gov?
Troubled HealthCare.gov unlikely to work fully by end of November
Software problems with the federal online health insurance marketplace, especially in handling high volumes, are proving so stubborn that the system is unlikely to work fully by the end of the month as the White House has promised, according to an official with knowledge of the project.
The real horror show is still to come.
It took 50 years in Canada to develop our universal program, piece by intricate piece. The Democrats in Congress tried to do it in one 2,000-page statute that hardly any of them had read. What could go wrong?
But I want to focus on a different kind of challenge. To meet its budget targets, Obama’s Affordable Care Act requires a massive intergenerational transfer of wealth.
Well, that's how private insurance works -- a transfer of wealth from the well to the sick. And maybe if the no-longer-young weren't hooked up to immensely painful, soul murdering, and hugely expensive hence highly profitable rental extraction machines at the end of their lives, the "transfer" from the not-yet-old would be a good deal less, eh? That said, the administration from day one has adopted this framing, so presumably they had their reasons, among which might be:
- Long-term, easing the young to accept compliance with the first coerced marketplace, ObamaCare ("If we can sell them this, we can sell them anything!") and
- Short-term, setting the table for cutting Social Security, as a matter of "intergenerational equity." (How that nets out as a win for the rentier class, I leave to smarter financial heads than mine.)
But back to the (relative) Canadian sanity. Read below the fold...
The survey of 200 U.S.-based data security analysts reveals that 40 percent removed malware from a senior manager’s computer or mobile device after the frisky executive visited an X-rated website.
Though malware poses a security threat, it appears companies are not being held accountable for their executives’ naughty behavior. The survey indicates that 57 percent of data breaches are not disclosed to company’s clients, partners or other affected parties.
Of course, if you work in a cube, watching porn is a firing offense, and don't think you're not watched. Read below the fold...
The fight over how to define the new health law’s success is coming down to one question: Who counts as an Obamacare enrollee?
Health insurance plans only count subscribers as enrolled in a health plan once they’ve submited a payment. That is when the carrier sends out a member card and begins paying doctor bills.
When the Obama administration releases health law enrollment figures later this week, though, it will use a more expansive definition. It will count people who have purchased a plan as well as those who have a plan sitting in their online shopping cart but have not yet paid.
“In the data that will be released this week, ‘enrollment’ will measure people who have filled out an application and selected a qualified health plan in the marketplace,” said an administration official, who requested anonymity to frankly describe the methodology.
It's exactly as if Amazon counted books left in people's shopping carts as sales. I've got plenty of stuff in my Amazon (sorry!) shopping cart -- I leave it there so I can find it again, and I've heard people have plenty of problems doing that. Read below the fold...
ObamaCare Clusterfuck: The ObamaCare Rollout, Organizational Dysfunction, and Public Relations in the Administration
[This combines the data from two earlier posts with some new interpretations. Basically, I'm not satisfied with a Big Lie interpretation for how the administration acts, and I'm seeking something more flexible and nuanced, and more susceptible to generalization across administrations. Basically, you can skip the aggregation of all the lies, and then start. Originally posted at NC. --lambert]
Administration officials and defenders often claim that demand and volume overloaded the Federal exchange when it was rolled out. This claim is, in fact, not true, and I'd like to see what that lie tells us about organizational behavior inside the administration, and how it will react to future ObamaCare problems -- which will be numerous.
First, some examples of the false claim, both from the administration and its defenders: Read below the fold...
Lately, I've had the feeling that “progressive” journalists and commentators too often pull their punches in calling attention to social problems, by underestimating the magnitude of problem-related statistics such as the unemployment rate and the number of fatalities due to lack of health insurance in the United States. My theory about this is that “progressives” are being defensive in their approach and bending over backwards to give the right wing the benefit of the doubt by understating numbers out of an abundance of caution.
If this is right, then my reply is that underestimating problem-related numbers is just as bad as over-estimating them, and that what people ought to do is try to provide the best estimates they can and let the critical chips fall where they may. In this post, I want to raise a question about the accuracy of the numerical estimates of US deaths due to lack of health insurance often seen in articles and blogs authored by people, like myself, who favor eliminating insurance coverage shortfalls by passing Medicare for All. Read below the fold...
The Finks - Emma Again
Previously posted here, but the band has shut down their Soundcloud page. (Looks like they've moved to Bandcamp.) In all honesty though, I'm just looking for an excuse to post this song again because I love love love it.
Grooveshark location, in case they move from Bandcamp:
The rules of Obamacare seem to push people into a benefits wall if you're even one dollar over 400% of Federal Poverty Level (FPL). Using the Kaiser subsidy calculator, I'd noticed a disquieting pattern a couple of months ago that affects older people who can expect to pay higher premiums.
For instance: a couple, both 62, making 400% of FPL:
- Household income in 2014: $62,040
- Maximum % of income for premium: 9.5%
- Likely "silver" plan premium: $14,567 per year
- Potential tax credit subsidy of up to: $8,673 per year
- Amount you pay for the premium: $5,894 per year
- Out-of-pocket maximum, in-network costs*: $12,700
- Total: $18,594. (That's "affordable" with an adjusted gross income of $62,000, right?)
Okay, now consider the same couple making one dollar more than 400% of FPL: Read below the fold...
I am a great admirer of nakedcapitalism, and I think Yves Smith does a huge service to the progressive community. That said, a recent postrecent post over there by Philip Pilkington, has me steaming. The question asked, in generic terms, is 'What ever happened to research funding in the US?' More specifically, to funding in industrial research labs. Read below the fold...