"Not having enough money was a cause of constant tension. And when you are five or six years of age and your parents are yelling at each other, it's, you know–thinking back on it now–you know, it's traumatic and it's hard." –U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders
Despite passing of the Affordable Care Act, millions of Americans still cannot afford healthcare insurance or prescription drug coverage.
Congressional Panel: Healthcare in the United States versus Canada
7 biggest economic lies being told by Republicans on the campaign trail:
Spending on Healthcare, Insurance Spending. Click to enlarge image:
"Medicare-for-all would not only guarantee health care for all people, not only save middle class families and our entire nation significant sums of money, it would radically improve the lives of all Americans and bring about significant improvements in our economy."
"People who get sick will not have to worry about paying a deductible or making a co-payment. They could go to the doctor when they should, and not end up in the emergency room. Business owners will not have to spend enormous amounts of time worrying about how they are going to provide health care for their employees. Workers will not have to be trapped in jobs they do not like simply because their employers are offering them decent health insurance plans."
Sanders' video below titled 'Budget Priorities' and our favorite world traveler's trip to Vaux-le-Vicomte in France inspired Rick Steves to compare Louis XIV and nobles of pre-revolution France to bankers and financiers of today.
Rick's post titled Old Regime France, America’s Grand Old Party, and the Gap Between Rich and Poor–Facebook link, text below–asks if whether members of Congress are public or private servants.
I'm taking off for Europe in a few days. And when I travel, I enjoy unplugging from the news cycles. But the news hit me with a parting shot: Our Republican-controlled Congress has proposed budget cuts directed at our country’s most vulnerable citizens.
I have to ask: What motivates Congressional Republicans to work so hard to exacerbate the gap between rich and poor? With the disturbing redistribution of wealth in our society in the last generation, I’ve been fascinated by an earlier age of unbridled wealth and decadence that
I see in my travels. The châteaux of the "one percent" of the Old Regime — those 17th- and 18th-century French tycoons whose insatiable greed eventually drove their country to such despair that it erupted into violent revolution--provide a vivid example. This video clip from my most recent trip to France's Loire Valley — essentially a tour of one of their homes — helps illustrate the state of our 2015 union in “1715 King Louis” terms. (Full video: Starts at 15:10)
Nobles of France vs. Bankers of Today
Bernie Introduces Fed Chair to Realilty
Bringing home these impressions to an America I care so much about, I've been struck by these words from Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders:
“As I examine the budget brought forth by the Republicans in the House and here in the Senate, this is how I see their analysis of the problems facing our country: It is apparently not good enough that since 1985 the top one-tenth of 1 percent has seen a more then $8 trillion increase in its wealth than what they would have had if wealth inequality had stayed at the same level that it was in 1985. An $8 trillion increase in the wealth of the top one-tenth of 1 percent! Apparently, that is not enough.
Meanwhile, as I understand the Republican view of our country, as manifested in the House and Senate budgets, it appears that millions of middle class and working families — people who are working longer hours for lower wages and who have seen significant declines in their standard of living over the last 40 years —apparently do not need our help. Rather they need to see a major reduction in federal programs that help make their lives, and the lives of their kids, a little bit better.
At a time when we have over 45 million Americans living in poverty — more than almost any time in the modern history of this country — my Republican colleagues think we should increase that number by cutting the Earned Income Tax Credit, affordable housing, and Medicaid. At a time when almost 20 percent of our children live in poverty, by far the highest childhood poverty rate of any major country on earth, my Republican colleagues think that maybe we should raise the childhood poverty rate a bit higher by cutting childcare, Head Start, the Child Tax Credit, and nutrition assistance for hungry kids.
To summarize: the rich get much richer, and the Republicans think they need more help. The middle class and working families of this country become poorer, and the Republicans think we need to cut programs they desperately need. Frankly, those may be the priorities of some of my Republican colleagues in this room, but I do not believe that these are the priorities of the American people.”
America’s economy is much stronger than Europe’s right now—but the gains are limited to the top strata of our population. Yet, because of Europe’s different approach to wealth distribution, when I travel I notice that the average European is doing better than then average American. And the poorer-than-average European is doing much better than the struggling American.
I wonder at what point, if ever, our Republican legislators will heed the lesson that the privileged of France's Old Regime learned the hard way: The growing gap between the elites and everyone else is not only un-American, it’s a recipe for instability.
Please help me understand this. If these numbers are correct, how can they be defensible? Are our Congressional Republicans, with their fierce advocacy, public servants or private servants? Considering all of our wealth and resources, is this the best we can do in America?
history more than American Revolution? Are we in the midst of another revolution?
Question 3: You've talked in your campaign about how it is immoral to protect the billionaire class at the expense of the most vulnerable in our society: obviously, children. A majority of Christians would agree with you, but would also go further to say that children in the womb need our protection even more. How do you reconcile (long applause)..How do you reconcile the two in your mind?
Senator Sanders: Understand, this is an area where we disagree. I do understand and I do believe that it is improbable for the United States government or state government to tell every woman in this country the very painful and difficult choice that she has to make on that issue.
And, I honestly don’t want to be too provocative here, but very often Conservatives say, “You know, get the government out of my life. I don’t want the government telling me what to do.” But on this very sensitive issue on which this nation is divided, a lot of people agree with you, a lot of people agree with me. But my view is, I respect absolutely a family that says, “No, we are not going to have an abortion.” I understand that. I respect that. But I would hope that other people respect the very painful and difficult choice that many women feel they have to make and don’t want the government telling them what they have to do.
But, but...I want to take that question a step further, David. We do disagree on that issue, no if, and, or buts about it. But here is where I hope we have common ground. Now, I've not tried to be partisan during my remarks. I have not. But I'm going to be partisan for a moment, because I wanna lay this on your shoulders. I am the ranking member of the U.S. Senate Budget Committee. That means I lead the Democrats in opposition. The Republicans control the House and the Senate. continued below...
Bernie Tackles Healthcare & Pharma Fleecing of America
Now I wanna to tell you what was in the Republican budget that passed a number months ago. Check it out if you think I'm not telling you the truth. When you talk about issues of children, understand that the Republican budget threw 27 million people off of healthcare, including many children, at a time when many families cannot afford to send their kids to college. And I'm running on a program, by the way, that says every college and public university in America should be tuition-free. But at a time when families cannot afford to send their kids to college, the Republican budget cut $90 billion in Pell Grants over a 10 year period. At a time when children in America are going hungry, the Republican budget cut billions of dollars in nutrition programs, including money for the WIC program which goes to low-income pregnant women and their babies. And to add insult to injury in that budget, the Republicans provided over $250 billion over a 10-year period in tax breaks to the top 2/10 of 1 percent (top 0.2%). I don't think that is a moral budget.
Nasser (as a loss of words): I'm not..I don't pretend to be an expert on budgets, but, uh, I think a lot of us would be very interested in our government and budgeting for Planned Parenthood. I think a lot of us would be interested at looking at those budgets..I think they get a lot more complex.
One student took issue with Sanders:
“The biggest inconsistency is the woman’s right to control her own body,” said Cameron Swathwood, a student [at Liberty] who attended the speech. “That assumes her body is the only one in question. … But if the unborn is in fact a human being which science and philosophy say it is, that killing the unborn is a grievous moral wrong.”
Our Amazing World's take:
Is it not equally as immoral and a greater detriment to our country to allow children to grow up in poverty with parents that struggle to provide appropriate care (and healthcare) for their children because of poverty?
PBS Frontline: Poor Kids
“How can this be the wealthiest country in the world when one in four of America’s children has been living in poverty for over four decades?” said Thomas K. McInerny, MD, president of the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP). "The AAP and the Academic Pediatric Association (APA) have decided that now is the time to work on reducing childhood poverty as a major step to improve the health of our nation’s children, our most precious resource.”
"One feature of low-rank is being low-ranking. The reality. An even stronger feature by the time you get to humans is not just being low-ranking or poor, it's feeling... low-ranking, or poor. And one of the best ways for society to make you feel like one of the have-nots is to rub your nose over and over again with what you don't have." –Robert Sapolsky
Pushing a Boulder To Your Grave?
- Children are the poorest segment of society: 22 percent of U.S. children live below the federal poverty level, a prevalence that has persisted since the 1970s. The effects of poverty on children’s health and well-being are well-documented. Poor children have increased infant mortality; more frequent and severe chronic diseases such as asthma; poorer nutrition and growth; less access to quality health care; lower immunization rates; and increased obesity and its complications.
Inequality dampens investment, and hence growth, by fueling economic, financial, and political instability:
Financial crises: A growing body of evidence suggests that rising influence of the rich and stagnant incomes of the poor and middle class have a causal effect on crises, and thus directly hurt short- and long-term growth. In particular, studies have argued that a prolonged period of higher inequality in advanced economies was associated with the global financial crisis by intensifying leverage, overextension of credit, and a relaxation in mortgage-underwriting standards (Rajan 2010), and allowing lobbyists to push for financial deregulation (Acemoglu 2011).
Health Preventative Medicine? What is the Connection?
FDA-Approved Drug Therapies and Classic Hallucinogens to
Treat Alcoholism: Barriers, Background, and the Latest Research
Is it Moral to Allow Corporations to Continue Making Huge Profits on Harmful and/or Addictive Psychoactive Drugs to Ineffectively Treat Anxiety and Centralized Pain, While Politicians Turn a Blind Eye to Non-Addictive Means of Resilience like Meditation and Therapy with Hallucinogens?
The cost of American higher education is
the laughingstock of the developed world.
WHY DOCTORS ARE SICK OF THEIR PROFESSION
This is a big reason people are having fewer kids or none at all. Add onto that expensive health insurance driven by overpriced healthcare and prescription drugs, high cost of college that is laughed at by the rest of the world, reduced religiosity, American society's tendency to self-medicate with alcohol and psychoactive prescription drugs (benzos, opioids, muscle relaxants, etc), few means of resilience and scarce/expensive mental health care, it's why we have a huge mental health and substance abuse problem in the United States.
The Problem with Mental Health and Substance Abuse Care in the USA
Eisenhower Smiles from the Grave as Bernie Sanders Tackles Defense and FDA Corruption
Treating the Uninsured Mentally Ill
Bernie Channels FDR, JFK, Arnie
HRC: I basically said, "cut it out."
Bernie: Going to them and saying 'please do the right thing' is kind of naive
O'Malley: Hillary Clinton is not for Glass-Steagall
Bernie Sanders Blitzes Wolf About Netanyahu
CLICK IMAGES BELOW FOR LINKS
Sources of FDA Addicted, regulatory agency ethics, studies and
lawsuits that target fraud in psychoactive drugmaker research and marketing.