Archive | Class War

The four-and-a-half-hour Nazi documentary you can’t afford to miss

I have watched part of the Nuremberg trials since the election, and it’s incredibly compelling in light of current events:

First released 40 years ago, ‘The Memory of Justice’ uses the Nuremberg Trials as a springboard for unanswerable questions. A newly restored version will be streaming on HBO from April 24 By Jordan Hoffman NEW YORK — Marcel Ophuls demands your time. Moreover, the 89-year-old documentary film director, born in Germany and holding French and American… Continue Reading →

Meet the lawyer trying to pry drug pricing secrets out of Big Pharma

Big Pharma Develops New App To Reduce Prescription Painkiller...

He has a private jet, a pedigree of winning billion-dollar settlements, and the (sometimes grudging) respect of his adversaries. Now, he wants to become pharma’s latest headache. Class-action attorney Steve Berman is coming after a drug industry he says is “gouging” the American consumer. And his suits have the potential to crack the lid on the… Continue Reading →

Here we go again

He’s still trying to kill Obamacare:

The showdown involves an Obamacare program know as “cost sharing reduction,” which requires insurance companies to offer discounted copayments and deductibles to low-income people who buy health plans on the individual market. In return, the federal government makes payments to compensate insurers for this expense. Last week, Trump threatened to stop making these payments to insurers—a move that could lead to massive price spikes for millions of people and cause insurers to flee from the individual marketplaces.

“We will not negotiate with hostage takers,” Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) warned.
By issuing the threat, Trump was attempting to scare Democrats into agreeing to repeal Obamacare. “Obamacare is dead next month if it doesn’t get that money,” Trump told the Wall Street Journal. “I haven’t made my viewpoint clear yet. I don’t want people to get hurt…What I think should happen and will happen is the Democrats will start calling me and negotiating.”

But Trump’s gambit may have backfired. Democratic leaders are now saying they might not vote to keep the government funded next week unless that funding bill includes a provision appropriating money specifically for the cost sharing reductions. “We will not negotiate with hostage takers,” Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) warned last week.

Democrats may actually have a surprisingly strong negotiating position. Despite controlling both chambers of Congress, the GOP needs their help to keep the government open. Republicans will need support from at least eight Democratic senators in order to avoid a filibuster. And given House Republicans’ penchant for defying party leadership, Speaker of the House Paul Ryan (R-Wisc.) might also need some Democratic votes to overcome conservative objections to the funding bill.

When it comes to the controversies surrounding Obamacare, the cost sharing reduction payments have received relatively little attention. But they are an essential component of how the law makes insurance affordable for lower-income families. For anyone who makes less than 250 percent of the federal poverty line ($30,150 for an individual, $61,500 for a family of four), the government pays insurance companies to lower out-of-pocket costs.

Professional weasel Grover Norquist: ‘Democrats and grasshoppers don’t get to vote on tax reform’

Grover Norquist

The one thing holding Donald Trump in office is his promise to rich cable news on-air talent and executives that they are going to get a honking big tax cut before the year is out. So of course, MSNBC’s chairman Phil Griffin makes a place at the table for intellectual bed wetter Grover Norquist to pound… Continue Reading →

DeVos civil rights office pick once claimed she faced discrimination for being white

04062017 SLAM-5

The new acting head of the U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights once complained that she experienced discrimination because she is white. As an undergraduate studying calculus at Stanford University in the mid-1990s, Candice Jackson “gravitated” toward a section of the class that provided students with extra help on challenging problems, she wrote in… Continue Reading →

In planned EPA cuts, US to lose vital connection to at-risk communities

MonumentValley1

By Nicole Smith Dahmen, Assistant Professor of Visual Communication, School of Journalism and Communication, University of Oregon and Deborah Morrison, Professor of Advertising, University of Oregon. Activists, federal workers and union representatives rallied for environmental protection policies at the EPA. American Federation of Government Employees, CC BY Recent headlines point to a relentless undoing of policy… Continue Reading →

Report: Trump to take ACA cost-sharing subsidies hostage to force negotiation

Cuando comía el postre, decidió atacar… (Video)

The latest Trump strongarm tactic on health care is intended to aim straight at the voters who voted for him, by making their copays and deductibles so expensive they can’t afford them. There are two different kinds of subsidies in the Affordable Care Act. One is the premium subsidy, which everyone knows about. The other is… Continue Reading →

Jeff Sessions: ‘We ask God’s blessings on the success’ of deporting immigrants

Jeff Sessions and Granny Clampett separated at birth

Attorney General Jeff Sessions on Tuesday asked for “God’s blessings” to help in the Trump administration’s effort to crack down on undocumented immigrants. In a press conference on the U.S. border with Mexico, Sessions announced that the “Trump era” in immigration enforcement had begun. “For those who continue to seek improper and illegal entry into this… Continue Reading →

Official involved in Bush-era purge of gay employees now working for Trump

As Seen on the Hill:  Rainbow Flag/"Don't Tread on Me" Flag Mashup

It was one of the uglier scandals of the Bush administration: Top officials at an agency dedicated to protecting whistleblowers launched a campaign against their own employees based on suspected sexual orientation, according to an inspector general report. Staffers were abruptly reassigned from Washington, D.C., to a new office 500 miles away in Detroit in what… Continue Reading →

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