Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Don't Get Sick: Obama's Health Insurance Premiums are Going Through the Roof

WASHINGTON - Brace yourselves for higher medical insurance costs that will hit young and old alike as a result of President Obama's nationalized health-care mandates.

Younger, healthier people, many of whom voted for him in droves, will see their insurance premiums climb sharply as Obamacare demands that insurers provide them with more medical coverage than they want or need.

Older Americans and retirees are already seeing a steep rise in their insurance bills, too. And businesses great and small are either curtailing their employee health care plans or dropping them entirely in anticipation of rising costs.

Many seniors who have supplemental policy plans -- that pay 20 percent of the medical bills Medicare does not -- have seen their premiums rise this year.

In California, Blue Shield is seeking state approval to raise its premiums by up to 20 percent, saying that federal mandates under Obamacare was a factor in their request.

Obama and White House officials (where taxpayers foot the bills for a generous health care plan) refuse to acknowledge any of this is happening across the country.

"Already, the Affordable Care Act is helping to slow the growth of health-care costs," Obama boasted in his State of the Union address last week.

"Apart from the fact that the statement is untrue, the line will be a real howler next year, especially for the young people who so enthusiastically supported him," writes veteran health care analyst Grace Marie Turner, president of the Galen Institute think tank.

Obama has made outlandish promises for his health care plan since he began selling it in his 2008 presidential campaign. That's when he promised his plan would "bring down premiums by $2,500 for the typical family" by the end of his first four years in office.

Four years later, "health insurance isn't any cheaper," writes Sally Pipes, president and CEO, and Taube Fellow in Health Care Studies at the Pacific Research Institute, in Forbes magazine.

"In fact, it's more expensive. Premiums have increased by an average of $3,065. And they're about to go up even more, as Obamacare takes effect during the president's second term," Pipes says.

Mark Bertolini, CEO of Aetna -- the nation's third largest health insurance company -- warned at the end of 2012 that Americans will face a "premium rate shock" when the president's tidal wave of regulations kick in next year.

Bertolini predicts unsubsidized insurance premiums will shoot up by 20 to 50 percent, on average.

They may be the lucky ones. Some consumers will see their costs double. "We're going to see some markets go up as much as 100 percent," Bertolini told Bloomberg News.

The reasons for the jump in health care costs were as predictable as the sun coming up in the morning. Obama's nationwide plan forces insurers to offer a larger, far more costlier package of benefits, including long-term treatment for the mentally ill, prescription drugs, contraceptives, and capping out-of-pocket expenses.

"Many 20-somethings who buy their own insurance have plans that are considerably skimpier. So under the new rule[s], they will be getting and paying for more, whether they want the added coverage or not," the Washington Post reported in a front page story earlier this month.

Other factors: Health insurance plans can't charge higher premiums for customers with preexisting illnesses, or rejecting them altogether. And they are limited in charging older customers higher prices than younger and healthier ones.

A new survey by the American Action Forum, a center-right think tank headed by economist Douglas Holtz-Eakin, reveals just how much Obama's health care takeover will cost ordinary Americans.

The survey asked insurers in six key markets (Chicago, Phoenix, Atlanta, Austin, Milwaukee and Albany) how the multiple mandates in Obama's Affordable Care Act (ACA) will affect their prices.

"The findings highlight the sticker shock in health care premiums that awaits the relatively young and healthy in both the small group and individual markets as the ACA is fully implemented.

The survey finds the cost of premiums for this group will increase by an average of 169 percent," the AAF report says.

In Milwaukee, the hardest-hit of the six markets, younger, healthier people will see premiums hiked by 190 percent.

For example, a young man will see his premium jump from $58 a month to $175, according to the survey. In Phoenix, which reported the lowest increase in insurance rates, younger people will face a 157 percent increase.

"Older, sicker people will see their premiums reduced as a result of the changes required by Obamacare, which limits how much insurers can use age and health status in calculating premiums," Turner points out.

But charging younger people more may threaten the precarious financial house of cards foundation on which Obamacare is built. The plan is based on drawing millions of younger people into the insurance market, to offset the higher costs of older Americans who require more medical care.

"With prices like these, that is unlikely, even with [federal] subsidies," Turner says. The AAF survey "provides more evidence of the failure of Obamacare in meeting its main goals of lowering costs and expanding coverage."

While the White House refuses to be honest with the American people about sharply higher health insurance costs, some of its key supporters admit they will go up.

MIT economist Jonathan Gruber, an architect of the new law, predicted that premiums in Wisconsin would jump by about 30 percent. In four of five states he has examined, "one-third of them are worse off," he said.

Perhaps the severest impact will be among employers who can't afford Obama's higher health insurance prices. Last year, a Congressional Budget Office and the Joint Committee on Taxation report suggested that about three to five million fewer people each year will be able to obtain employer-provided health insurance in the years to come.

Throw in an economy that's not growing and a very high unemployment rate Democrats call "the new normal," and the future under Obama is looking bleaker every day.

Gun Industry Begins to Fight Back

By: Bob Barr / Townhall Columnist
 
Gun Industry Begins to Fight Back
Firearms manufacturers usually find themselves playing defense. Following virtually every highly publicized incident involving a multiple shooting, manufactures often are among the first round of scapegoats flogged by the mainstream media and gun-control politicians. Indeed, were it not for the 2005 law that protects gun manufactures from frivolous lawsuits by victims of gun crimes, many would be out of business.

Thankfully, at least some firearms manufacturers now are going on the offensive; returning fire in New York’s escalating war against Second Amendment rights in the Empire State.

In a post on its Facebook page, for example, Olympic Arms, Inc., a company headquartered in Washington state but which markets its products, including the AR-15 rifle, nationwide, outlined a new sales policy for New York. The company declared: “the State of New York, any Law Enforcement Departments, Law Enforcement Officers, First Responders within the State of New York, or any New York State government entity or employee of such an entity -- will no longer be served as customers.”

The company has put its customers on notice this new policy will remain in effect until New York repeals its draconian gun regulations passed as a knee-jerk reaction to the December mass shooting in Newtown, Connecticut.

Olympic Arms is one of a growing number of gun manufactures responding to increasingly burdensome gun restrictions, by applying the same standards to government customers as governments are applying to private citizens. “If the leaders of the State of New York are willing to limit the right of the free and law abiding citizens of New York to arm themselves as they see fit under the Rights enumerate to all citizens of the United State through the Second Amendment,” writes Olympic Arms, “we feel as though the legislators and government entities within the State of New York should have to abide by the same restrictions.”

This long-overdue “line in the sand” drawn by firearms manufacturers against gun-control advocates in government, rests on the premise that we have reached a pivotal moment in American history for Second Amendment rights. Opponents of the Second Amendment, including Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel and New York City’s Michael Bloomberg, are -- as they have in the past -- taking full political advantage of the latest mass shooting. Sensing they can use the Newtown shooting as a way to regain gun-control ground lost in the past two decades, they and others on their team are laying the groundwork for perhaps the most serious attack on Second Amendment rights ever.

More important than the actual economic impact of moves like Olympic Arms’, however, is the symbolism of the “reverse boycott,” and the message it sends to government officials at the national, state and local levels who believe themselves emboldened to run roughshod over the people’s constitutionally-guaranteed right to keep and bear arms.

For example, in South Carolina -- the state that led the nullification fight against tyrannical federal tariffs back in 1832 -- State Senator Tom Davis is helping lead a modern “nullification” movement. Davis tells The State newspaper, “[f]or the first time I can remember in recent history ... [states are] actually stepping up (and) challenging the exercise of power by the federal government.”

The backlash against Big Government is an encouraging sign of a growing resistance to the mission creep of federal power. For far too long the American public and business sector have kept their silence as civil liberties have been whittled away by statutory and regulatory measures. Even if private businesses like Olympic Arms, and state officials like Davis, ultimately are not successful in every fight, their actions will at least help to slow down the spread of this toxic mindset that deems the Constitution irrelevant in today’s society.

Their stand may encourage leaders in Washington to begin taking more meaningful action at killing harmful bills before they become laws. Remaining on the sidelines in this battle is no longer an option for freedom loving Americans. The chips are down, and the opponents of the Second Amendment are going all in. For the rest of us, offering encouragement to companies like Olympic Arms that are willing to stand up to the Big Government forces arrayed against them, is a vital service in the never-ending fight to preserve individual liberty against government control.

My my how convenient...


Hagel says he "doesn't recall" his remark about Israel controlling the State Department

From Jihad Watch / Posted by Robert Spencer 

Maybe his Muslim Brotherhood handlers have taught him about that "war is deceit" thing.

"Hagel 'Doesn't Recall' Remark on Israel Controlling State Dept.," by Rachel Hirshfeld for Israel National News, February 18 (thanks to Voice of the Copts):
Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) said that he has accepted a new disclaimer from President Obama’s defense secretary nominee Chuck Hagel (R-Neb.) disavowing one of his many offensive statements about the state of Israel. 
Graham told “Fox News Sunday” that he received a new letter from the beleaguered nominee in which Hagel claimed he “did not recall” the odious statement-- allegedly made during a speech at Rutgers University in 2007-- in which he argued that the State Department is controlled by the Israeli Foreign Minister’s office.
“Well, if in fact that’s true, that would end the matter,” Graham said, adding, “I just take him at his word unless something new comes along.”
“I'm glad he answered my question about a very disturbing comment he allegedly made,” he told Fox News.
Graham joined fellow Republicans in filibustering Hagel's nomination on Thursday, marking the first time a defense secretary has been filibustered in the Senate.
Graham is continuing to seek more information from the Obama administration this week on the Sept. 11 attacks on the U.S. embassy in Bengazi, Libya, which resulted in the death of four Americans, including U.S. Ambassador Christopher Stevens.
The senator warned last week that he would hold off approval of both Hagel and John Brennan, Obama's nominee for CIA director, until he receives more answers.
During the interview, however, Graham indicated that he would support ending debate on Hagel when the Senate returns from recess next week, despite considering him “one of the most radical and unqualified choices” to be defense secretary.
Hagel’s numerous other anti-Jewish and anti-Israel comments include the former senator claiming that “the Jewish lobby intimidates a lot of people" in Congress into “doing dumb things”; that the Jewish state is keeping the “Palestinians caged up like animals” and that Israel has kept the Palestinian people “chained down for many, many years.”
He has further come under fire for his feeble position on military action against Iran, his willingness to open direct talks with Hamas, his opposition to declaring Hizbullah a terrorist organization, as well as a long list of other highly provocative issues and associations.

Obama: Free At Last Obama: Free At Last

by / Personal Liberty Digest

“Free at last! Free at last! Thank God Almighty, we are free at last!”
 — Martin Luther King Jr., at the conclusion of his march on Washington, D.C., Aug. 28, 1963

President Barack Obama has a dream, and he made it clear to the Nation a week ago during his State of the Union address. In it, he laid out how it will be manifested in his last term. Obama has four more years to be free at last, four years to dictate his economic and energy visions to the United States.

We are at the cusp of a revolutionary period — a time for Obama to right a ship that he, with his Ivy League idealism, never believed was properly upright. The President will use these years to cement what he believes is his rightful place in history.

But these next four years will reap an economic crisis, planted by the President and from which the only harvest can be the destruction of the U.S. dollar.

Obama’s audacious plans for America’s future were laid out plainly during his State of the Union speech last week.

“Deficit reduction alone is not an economic plan,” he said.

I know the President said this because I was watching Obama’s address with my wife. I asked, “Did he just say what I think he said?” She looked as surprised as me and gave me an affirmative nod.

With the power of the Internet, I understood that evening that indeed neither of us had been dreaming. Instead, the President had been on television sharing his dream for America’s future.

Then, this past weekend, the President gave his weekly radio and Internet address to reaffirm his position that deficits do not matter.

According to Obama, no American who works full-time should live in poverty. He was asking Americans to support his proposals to raise the minimum wage, pass comprehensive immigration reform and incentivize companies to create jobs in the United States. The President clearly believes that the long-term solution to America’s economic problems is more short-term debt. What Obama doesn’t realize is that we are already late in the game.

When I started out writing about the Federal government more than 30 years ago, the Federal debt was just more than $900 billion. I remember my father, who was my publisher at the time, fretting about what $1 trillion in Federal debt would mean for the economy. As it turned out, it meant very little. We blew past that total, then many other milestone numbers. The biggest debt accumulator of all time is Obama.

Continued deficit spending is part of Obama’s dream; but it is a dream I very much doubt that King would endorse, given the increase in poverty to American minorities.

Earlier this month, The Washington Informer stated:
There is nothing wrong with Blacks “having Obama’s back” if we were all enjoying high levels of economic success, but continuing to applaud ineptness is dishonest. Suppose you spend more money this month than your income. To keep going you borrow. The amount you now owe is “debt.” You have to pay interest on your debt. If next month you spend more than your income, you must borrow more and still have to pay the interest on your now larger debt. If you keep borrowing eventually you will reach a point where all you can do is pay the interest and not have money left for anything else. This is known as “bankruptcy.”
… It’s time Black Americans ask themselves: “Can these practices go on forever and can we pretend that what has been occurring is “good governance?” Talk about a “racial divide”: Polls show that Blacks and mainstream America view this economic imperative differently. While 96 percent of Black Americans support Obama and his policies, 85 percent of Americans worry that growing deficit spending will hurt their children and grandchildren, and 56 percent think that within the next decade the red ink will spark a major economic crisis.
Since Obama took office, the Federal debt has increased to $16.5 trillion, up from $10.6 trillion when George W. Bush left office.

Yet, according to the President, education, job training and benefits to the elderly should not be sacrificed to reduce the deficit.

So where then is the sacrifice? It seems Obama wants to have his cake and eat it, too: He wants to bankrupt America.

One thing college did not teach Obama is that deficits will matter in the long run. (In fact, we are rapidly approaching the time when they will matter.) Deficits matter because the Federal government is borrowing $5 billion per day to pay its operating expenses, and many of the Treasury auctions are being attended by foreign investors. The last data on a full month was for December; foreigners bought almost $30 billion in Treasury debt. Currently, China and Japan are sitting on $2.3 trillion in U.S. Treasury debt. And for Obama and the United States to continue to meet its spending plans, it needs these two countries and many others to keep bidding at Treasury auctions.

What happens if investors in Beijing and Tokyo lose confidence in the ability of the U.S. government to deliver back dollars that have “not” lost their worth because of inflation?

The first thing that would happen is that the U.S. bond market would begin to snap, since the United States would be forced to pay higher interest rates to sell its lifeline of debt. Higher interest rates would impact not only the bond market, but the stock market, real estate market and every component of the U.S. economy. In a matter of days or even hours, we could have an economic bust that would make the Crash of 2008 a footnote in history books.

Yet I believe that Obama remains unfazed by the size of the exploding Federal deficit and the resulting whirlwind that will drive interest rates higher and implode the U.S. economy. Either Obama is willfully unaware of the risks facing the Nation or he simply does not care about them. His ultimate economic and political endgame may be known only to him and a few insiders, but I believe he is the most dangerous President America has elected in the past 100 years.

While King revealed his dream for America half a century ago, Obama is just beginning to fully disclose his vision. It is the antithesis of King’s dream. It will not strengthen nor unite a Nation; it will weaken and rip us apart, both blacks and whites. The President’s dream will become the Nation’s nightmare.

Yours in good times and bad,
John Myers
Editor, Myers’ Energy & Gold Report
The man NEVER should have been 'elected' BREC Chair (if you call that farse an election) in the first place.

Important BREC Announcement

February 20, 2013

Dear Members of BREC:

It is with regret that your Executive Board has accepted Rico Petrocelli’s unexpected voluntary resignation as Chairman, effective immediately.

On behalf of the Board, I wish to thank Rico for his contributions to the Board and years of service as executive director of BREC. We extend our warm wishes for his success in his future endeavors. Rico will continue to serve as a Precinct Committeeman, to support the election of Republican candidates.

Going forward, as Vice Chairman, it becomes my responsibility to assume the role and function of Interim Chairman until a new Chairman is elected. Under RPOF rules, an election must be called within 60 days. The Executive Board will convene promptly and make a separate announcement calling for election of a new Chairman.

Be assured that the business and programs of the BREC will remain on schedule during an orderly transition in the leadership of BREC. Your Board remains committed to furthering the mission of BREC and working for Republican victories.

All of us on the Board value your input, suggestions and continuing support.

Very truly yours,
Christine A. Butler / Vice Chairman

WooooHoooo...MARCO 2016!!!





Rubio Establishes ‘Victory Committee’ With Eye Towards 2016

ByJavierManjarres

While there is increasing speculation that U.S. Senator Marco Rubio will run for President of the United States in 2016, is it too early for Rubio to start campaigning for the job?  Rubio is already positioning himself for a possible run in several different regards, as he’s stepped up his rhetoric against Obama and the Democrat party, recently toured Israel and the Middle East, and enlisted new consultants to assist him with crafting his messaging and policy.

U.S.Senator Marco Rubio (Shark Tank) 
Presidential primary campaigns don’t usually rev up until about two years before the next presidential election, so the question begs- just why is Rubio printing up bumper stickers with the slogan “Victory?”

It’s becoming ever more apparent that Rubio is engaged in some serious preparation for 2016. 

With the Organizing For America data collection/fundraising juggernaut looming in the background, any aspiring Republican candidate for president in 2016 had better be preparing early.

Rubio-Victory-bumper-sticker-mailer_Page_1-343x1024

Here are some supporting documents for the the newly minted joint Committee-

 
rubio victory2
Op-ed: 
Neither gun control or banning high-capacity magazines will accomplish anything 
By: Diane Sori


As Barack Hussein Obama plays golf with Tiger Woods, and Michelle and the girls are off on yet another vacation on our taxpayer dime (after all she works so hard doesn't she...gag), on Monday, cleverly hidden under the media radar, four gun control bills passed the Colorado House of Representatives, and are on their way to the State Senate where they're likely to pass.

Passing the House on a mostly party-line vote (a few Democrats did side with the Republicans and voted nay), these bills are a dangerous foreboding of Obama's gun control agenda. Focusing on gun magazines, Colorado’s House passed House Bill 1224 that would limit magazines to 15 rounds. Its backers used the shootings in Newtown and at Aurora (the Batman Movie Massacre) as justification for this limit. HB 1226 banned concealed firearms on college campuses, HB 1228 requires gun buyers to pay for their own criminal background checks (more money taken from our pockets), and HB 1229 makes background checks mandatory for all firearms transactions (kind of redundant as reputable dealers already do that).

And here's more NOT happy news...

While Colorado (the new heart of stoned-out La-La Liberaland) moves forward with their useless ban on high-capacity magazines (I'll explain why it's useless in a bit), Washington State is moving forward with their own outright assault on the Constitution with Senate Bill 5737. This bill would make many currently legal firearms, illegal, and this is the biggie...it would give law enforcement officials permission to disregard the 4th Amendment (the right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated...) and to enter law-abiding citizen's homes once a year to search for, inspect, and make sure legally owned firearms are safely and securely stored, and to do so without a warrant.

Firearms bought legally by law abiding citizens now would become suspect it seems.

And as Colorado and Washington press on with their infringement on our 2nd Amendment right to keep and bear arms, which by the way the Supreme Court upheld in 2010, at least those in Congress realize that an outright ban on assault weapons themselves would be political suicide, but unfortunately they do seem quite receptive to a ban on high-capacity magazines, believing banning them will stop high fatality mass shootings. But that will NOT be the case, because the simple fact is you can tape magazines together and make the very thing the government is trying to ban. Anyone with a roll of tape can turn 10-round magazines into 20-round magazines in a few seconds. In a few more seconds you can make two 20-round magazines, and in a few more seconds you can make more...and have them ready to go before the killing starts.

Obviously those who live by the law won't do this, but criminals, the very people who do NOT live by the law, will either get higher-capacity illegal magazines, or simply they'll make them, and it doesn't take any great brain or money to do so...and there's even instructional videos on the Internet on how to do this, and last time I looked tape was still cheap...so will tape be banned next and the will the Internet be shut down...with those in crazy DC who knows.

And so the battle for gun control moves forward, it appears state by state, but this idiocy needs to stop and stop now. Thankfully, some are trying to do just that. For example, Missouri State Representative Mike Leara recently introduced a measure that would make it a felony to propose legislation that erodes the 2nd Amendment right to keep and bear arms, doing this in response to a Democratic proposal giving Missouri gun owners 90 days to turn in rifles, pistols and shotguns deemed to be 'assault weapons'.

We sure need more like him doing just as he did...state by state.

And as Obama claims gun control is 'for the children' I say, 'bullsh*t' as this is just another bold faced lie told by him and his liberal Democratic cohorts whose real goal is to undermine, if NOT outright do away with, the 2nd Amendment, and when done with that then to move on to the 4th, and 10th Amendments as well. And those who really in their hearts believe that gun control is the answer to stopping violent crime are fooling themselves as they're obsessing over an inanimate object, instead of looking at and placing blame on those who actually pull the trigger and commit the violent acts. And remember, 40+% of Americans legally own firearms, and whether the gun control freaks like it or not, the overwhelming vast majority of gun owners are law-abiding citizens, and that means that the criminals who commit these kinds of violent acts aren't obeying the laws already in place, so why would the gun controllers even remotely think criminals would obey stricter laws...it makes NO sense.

Bottom line...the Obama Administration is tearing apart our Constitution and the rights it gives 'We the People' a little bit at a time, each and every day, but as long as we firearm owners stand united behind the 2nd Amendment and against this gun control abomination we will prevail...or our Constitutionally given rights may just have to be exercised before too long...just saying...