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Few phrases pepper the rhetoric of Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney more frequently than variations of Justice Brandeis' famous quote that the states may "serve as a laboratory" for the rest of the nation. "Before imposing a one-size-fits-all federal program," Romney wrote in 2009, "Let the states serve as 'the laboratories of democracy.'" Two years later, he reminder readers that "under our federalist system, the states are 'laboratories of democracy.'" And in June, the GOP White House hopeful renewed his attack on the Affordable Care Act, proclaiming "I believe in the 10th Amendment. I believe the states have responsibility to care for their people in the way they feel best."

But Mitt Romney has often acknowledged "what works in one state may not be the answer for another," he seems to have inverted Brandeis' point about states undertaking "social and economic experiments without risk to the rest of the country." Because on health care, taxes, union rights, immigration, abortion and a host of other issues, Mitt Romney is championing some of the most extreme and often dangerously unsuccessful policy prescriptions Republicans in the states have been able to cook up.

For a preview of how President Romney would govern in Washington, D.C., here's a brief tour of some of Mitt's meth labs of democracy* in the states.

Health Care: Mississippi. Once upon a time, Mitt Romney touted his signature health care law in Massachusetts as a "model" for the nation. And with good reason. Back in the Bay State, Governor Romney's 2006 legislation is very popular, having reduced the ranks of the uninsured to a national low of two percent, all while improving residents' health.

But that great achievement was a liability among Republican primary voters. So, Romney disowned what MIT's Jonathan Gruber later called "the same f**king bill" as President Obama's Affordable Care, the law Romney now pledges to repeal. Instead, Mitt has repackaged George W. Bush's prescription of tax deductions, health savings accounts and tort reform, adopted Paul Ryan's Medicare voucher program, and called for Medicaid to be drastically cut and handed over to the states as block grants. As he explained earlier this year:

What I would do is keep--as we have today--state responsibility for those that are uninsured...And states will learn from each other, and some will have good experiences and others will not. That's happening even today and states are learning and trying new ways to care for the uninsured. It's important for us in my view to make sure that every American has access to good health care.
But Romney's scheme wouldn't just leave as many as 48 million more Americans without health insurance. His block grant proposal, one long supported by former Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour, will have predictably dire results. As Jonathan Cohn of the New Republic warned:
That's not to say plenty of governors wouldn't take advantage of block grant status to change their Medicaid programs in ways they cannot now. They surely would--by capping enrollment, thinning benefits, increasing co-payments, and so on.
As the Washington Post explained, that dystopian future is Mississippi's nightmare present:
Mississippi provides some of the lowest Medicaid benefits to working adults in the nation. A parent who isn't working can qualify only if annual family income is less than 24 percent of the poverty line. Working parents qualify only if they make no more than 44 percent of the federal poverty level. Seniors and people with disabilities are eligible with income at 80 percent of the poverty line...

Translated from the federal poverty guidelines, that means a working Mississippi couple with one child could earn no more than $8,150 a year and still qualify for Medicaid, seniors and people with disabilities could earn no more than $8,700, and a pregnant woman could earn no more than $20,000 a year.

As to why his state, one whose health care system is ranked dead last by the Commonwealth Fund, wants control over Medicaid block grants, Barbour offered this Four-Pinocchio protest:
"We have people pull up at the pharmacy window in a BMW and say they can't afford their co-payment."
Taxes and Budget: Kansas. If Mitt Romney's vision of America's health care future can be found in Mississippi, his tax cut scheme looks a lot like what's the matter in Kansas.

(Continue reading below the fold.)

As you may recall, Romney has proposed making the Bush tax cuts permanent and giving a 20 percent across the board tax cut that would deliver yet another massive windfall for the wealthy. But because he wants to boost defense spending by a staggering $2.1 trillion over the next decade while refusing to name a single tax deduction he would close, the result is that President Romney would unleash oceans of red ink from the U.S. Treasury. Even, it turns out, with his draconian cuts to non-defense spending.

Welcome to the budgetary hellscape that is Kansas.

There, Gov. Sam Brownback and his GOP allies slashed the upper-income tax rate from 6.5 percent to 4.9 percent, while shifting more of the burden of its already regressive system onto poorer residents of the Jayhawk State. As Reuters described the impact of Kansas' endorsement of the Romney-Ryan approach to taxes:

Backers of recent state tax cuts argue they will create jobs and boost the economy to partially offset lost revenue, with budget cuts solving the remaining shortfall. The tax cuts go into effect in January, and the Kansas Legislative Research Department calculates the lost revenue will amount to the equivalent of 36 percent of the state budget within five years.

Republican Governor Sam Brownback has described the reforms as a "real live experiment" that proponents want to see implemented at the national level.

Education: Louisiana. For Mitt Romney, the love that dare not speak its name is "vouchers." Two weeks after he delivered a major address on education policy in which he never mentioned the V word, the New York Times detailed Romney's proposal to divert $25 billion in taxpayer dollars to religious, private and for-profit schools. But voters don't have to imagine what that plan, an old GOP twofer designed to subsidize Christian institutions while bludgeoning Democratic-friendly teachers unions, will do to American public education. As the frightening results in states like Louisiana, Indiana, Georgia and Arizona show, the Republican voucher dream is fast becoming an American horror story.

Gov. Romney has been an advocate of so-called "school choice" since his first run for the White House. In 2007, Romney suggested American parents should not only be encouraged to abandon the public schools; they should be rewarded for it with a tax break for home schooling their kids:

"I also believe parents who are teaching their kids at home, homeschoolers, deserve a break, and I've asked for a tax credit to help parents in their homes with the cost of being an at-home teacher."
Now, as the Republican nominee outlined in a recent speech to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, Romney wants to redirect $25 billion from two federal programs into a new voucher scheme. As the New York Times explained:
As president, Mr. Romney would seek to overhaul the federal government's largest programs for kindergarten through 12th grade into a voucherlike system. Students would be free to use $25 billion in federal money to attend any school they choose -- public, charter, online or private -- a system, he said, that would introduce marketplace dynamics into education to drive academic gains.
But as the experience in Bobby Jindal's Louisiana suggests, that system would instead introduce large quantities of public cash into the coffers of religious schools and academies whose educational credentials may be suspect at best. There, voucher-receiving institutions must be blessed by the state. As the Daily Kingfish noted, over 90 percent of the 115 schools qualifying for Jindal's $8.500 voucher are religious institutions. And as Reuters documented, many of the 7,450 slots reserved for voucher students are at some pretty suspect schools:
The school willing to accept the most voucher students -- 314 -- is New Living Word in Ruston, which has a top-ranked basketball team but no library. Students spend most of the day watching TVs in bare-bones classrooms. Each lesson consists of an instructional DVD that intersperses Biblical verses with subjects such chemistry or composition.

The Upperroom Bible Church Academy in New Orleans, a bunker-like building with no windows or playground, also has plenty of slots open. It seeks to bring in 214 voucher students, worth up to $1.8 million in state funding.

At Eternity Christian Academy in Westlake, pastor-turned-principal Marie Carrier hopes to secure extra space to enroll 135 voucher students, though she now has room for just a few dozen. Her first- through eighth-grade students sit in cubicles for much of the day and move at their own pace through Christian workbooks, such as a beginning science text that explains "what God made" on each of the six days of creation. They are not exposed to the theory of evolution.

"We try to stay away from all those things that might confuse our children," Carrier said.

Union Rights: South Carolina. Mitt Romney might think the trees are the right in his home state of Michigan, but he's not too happy about the size of the unions there. But in his effort to crack down on what he calls "labor stooges," Mitt looks to South Carolina.

Romney has called for a federal "right-to-work" law, which would forbid requiring union membership as a condition of employment. But while Michigan's Gov. Rick Snyder was opposed, Romney has a friend and ally in South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley. As the South Carolina Radio Network reported, Governor Haley didn't merely announce that her right-to-work state "does not need unions." She called for the disbanding of the National Labor Relations Board after it ruled that Boeing had illegally moved production to the Palmetto State solely in order to avoid strikes in its Washington State facilities. Romney was quick to join Haley in declaring the NLRB move "un-American":

"The National Labor Relations Board, now stacked with union stooges selected by the president, says to a free enterprise like Boeing, 'you can't build a factory in South Carolina because South Carolina is a right-to-work state.'"
That's not true. But it was enough to earn Mitt Romney the endorsement of the tea party darling in Columbia.

Public Employees: Ohio, Wisconsin. Mitt Romney's rhetoric is particularly venomous when it comes to government workers and the unions that represent them.

Romney hasn't merely targeted federal employees for a 10 percent workforce reduction despite Uncle Sam's payroll as a percentage of total U.S. population now at its lowest level since the 1950s. He has wrongly claimed both that "average government workers are now making $30,000 a year more than the average private-sector worker" and "federal compensation exceeds private sector levels by as much as 30 to 40 percent when benefits are taken into account." In particularly revealing language, Romney complained about:

"Our servants who are making a lot more money than we are."
All of which explains Mitt Romney's support for Republican efforts in states like Wisconsin and Ohio to crack down on public employee unions. After initially playing dumb, Romney came out in support of Ohio Gov. John Kasich on SB5, a new state law ending collective bargaining rights for government workers, including policemen and firefighters. But after Buckeye State voters overwhelming repealed Senate Bill 5, Romney still had Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker as a role model:
"Governor Walker has shown that citizens and taxpayers can fight back - and prevail - against the runaway government costs imposed by labor bosses. Tonight voters said 'no' to the tired, liberal ideas of yesterday, and 'yes' to fiscal responsibility and a new direction. I look forward to working with Governor Walker to help build a better, brighter future for all Americans."
Just not for Americans who happen to members of Wisconsin's various unions. By June, the ranks of AFSCME, the NEA and AFT dropped by half to two-thirds.

As it turns out, Mitt Romney finds his inspiration wherever Republicans are experimenting with their junk social science. Romney, who in his run for governor told Planned Parenthood that he supported Roe v. Wade, funding abortion services through Medicaid for low-income women and the "morning after" pill, now proclaims, "Planned Parenthood, we're going to get rid of that." Just like Rick Perry in Texas. As draconian new voter identification laws in states like Florida, Pennsylvania, North Carolina and Wisconsin improve his election chances by keeping minority residents (i.e. Democrats) away from the ballot box, Romney unsurprisingly announced, "I like Voter ID laws by the way... more of them." (Just this week, the Romney campaign demanded a probe of voter registration forms distributed in Bob McDonnell's Virginia.) Even though he once declared his "unwavering" support of Roe v. Wade after the death of a "dear, close family relative" from an illegal abortion, Gov. Romney now suggests he could "absolutely" support state "personhood" amendments like the one that went down to defeat in Mississippi. And while he "can't have illegals" because he's "running for office, for Pete's sake," Mitt has called Jan Brewer's hard line immigration laws in Arizona a "model."

In a sense, Mitt Romney has his own plan for secure borders. The borders of Massachusetts, that is. On issue after issue, he has rejected the policies he once advocated in order to win over the Bay State's much more liberal electorate. Put another way, what happened in Boston stays in Boston. But now, Romney instead is turning to policies cooked up in those right-wing meth labs of democracy, GOP states which are already breaking bad.

* Credit to Jon Stewart of the Daily Show for the term "meth lab of democracy."

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Comment Preferences

  •  Make the USA into Mississippi? WTF? ya nutz? (32+ / 0-)

    Mississippi is a model for health care reform? Romney is crazy as hell.

    80 % of success is showing up

    Corporate is not the solution to our problem

    Corporate is the problem

    by Churchill on Sun Jul 29, 2012 at 07:33:34 AM PDT

  •  This is certainly true for most of us: (6+ / 0-)
    Mitt Romney is championing some of the most extreme and often dangerously unsuccessful policy prescriptions Republicans in the states have been able to cook up
    ,,,,but, policies pushed by the republican party and some Democrats have been extraordinarily successful for the top .01% of wealth owners.

    ",,, the Political whorehouse that is Fox News." Keith Olbermann

    by irate on Sun Jul 29, 2012 at 07:34:24 AM PDT

  •  If Rmoney wins, secede! (6+ / 0-)

    I believe the patriotic response to an election of your despised political foe is secession, as Rick Perry and many others demonstrated in 2009 once Obama was in office.

    Since I live in Seattle, I'm gonna be down with the Cascadia movement.  The vision Romney and the extremists have for this country is just...f'n...awful.   I'm joking about secession, obviously, but it really does terrify me to think how radically they want to transform this country.

    •  Devolution is more likely than not, in time (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      ssmt, Anne Elk, indres

      I don't believe this is far-fetched in the long run...this country is becoming of a size that is not sustainable under a single government.  When you have not enlarged the size of Congress so that today, each Member of the House represents around 800,000 people, representative democracy is a hollow shell.  Most, if not all, other countries of our approximate size hold--or have recently held--some part of their own territory under force of arms.

      I am from Cascadia (Seattle) and have lived in the odious Nikki Haley's South Carolina on and off for some time.  Having also traveled a fair bit I can say that the West Coast has far more in common with Australia or Canada than with the South, with whom we share a flag and some shared history.  This is not meant to be a slam on the South at all, just an observation that what they want for their government and cultural way of life is often diametrically opposed to what those from my part of the country do.  When you throw in the fact that the West and the Northeast subsidize the hell out of them with our tax dollars, sometimes I just feel that we'd be better off as friendly neighbors than part of an unwieldy coalition with dramatically different goals.

      I like lemurs -6.50, -4.82

      by roadbear on Sun Jul 29, 2012 at 08:50:52 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Over time, decentralization will happen (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        roadbear, wsexson, indres

        I agree that we in Seattle have far more in common with our neighbors in Vancouver than we do with South Carolina, Alabama, Florida or even New England.  It's not an insult at all to those who live elsewhere, but geographical reality.  

        My predictions is as energy becomes more and more expensive and we discover alternate energy sources don't scale the way cheap crude does, the country will regionalize significantly.  Washington DC is very far away from Seattle.  Ultimately we may desire a regional government that puts our west coast needs ahead of other needs.  

        That may not happen for a long time (30-50 years...or maybe less, who knows), but I do think it'll happen.

        Romney and the GOP vision for America is honestly one that sends chills through me for its emphasis on greed and exploiting everyone for the benefit of a few elite rich people.

    •  I'm not. California is my country. (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      ssmt, roadbear, indres

      I don't care too much about the other States. And, if people were prepared to admit it, they probably would find that their regional sympathies were now significantly stronger than their national feelings. I am a citizen of the Western side of the continent. WA, OR and CA would make collectively a country of great wealth that would be a significant actor in the world and contribute to its betterment more powerfully than the present United States. The West, freed from the drag of all those old Confederate States, would bound forward. Obviously, we are only at the beginning of the movement and it's a huge hill to climb but the United States has become too big and too diverse to govern effectively. Let the red states go their way. I would not detain them on their path to ruin.

      The universe may have a meaning and a purpose, but it may just specifically not include you.

      by Anne Elk on Sun Jul 29, 2012 at 09:23:10 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  West Coast uber alles (0+ / 0-)

        My dream "nation" would extend from around the Bay Area and head north up through BC.  I'm not sure how far east we should extend.  Perhaps the wine growing parts of eastern Washington, but there are sure a lot of right wing nuts over the Cascades.

        I agree...the Pacific Coast would be a solid, mostly unified entity, at least in theory.  I do wonder if this will eventually play out in my lifetime.  I got probably 30 years left in me to find out.

        •  hello, fellow Cascadia citizen :) (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          ssmt

          I, too, live in the Seattle area, and have often wondered if the West Coast wouldn't split off from the rest of the country someday.  I agree that it would probably be better for us, and I don't much care for the rest of the country.  Having grown up in Eastern WA though, I must defend my birthplace.....they're not all wingnuts, I swear.  ;)  In fact, there are many liberals, and even those that are Republican are still quite moderate in their views (especially compared to Repubs in the Old South).  Besides, if we do ever secede, we'll need the agricultural regions of Eastern WA and OR.  There are many Eastern WA crops, such as wheat, that just don't grow as well on this side of the Cascades.  

          •  My mom's side of the family is from the tri cities (0+ / 0-)

            Although about half of the nine are total right wingers (my mom probably the most down the rabbit hole of Palin/Bachmann nuttiness, unfortunately), they are from the Pasco area so I have some roots in that area.  Sort of.  My mom ran off to Colorado and married my dad so that's originally where I'm from.

            That said, once I moved to the Pac northwest, this really felt like my home.  Like I should have moved here years before I got around to it.  

      •  I totally agree with this sentiment (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        indres

        re: regional identity. Do I feel great pride and patriotism in being American?  Not really.  Do I feel great pride at being born and raised in Eastern WA, and now being a current resident of Western WA?  Absolutely.  I've traveled enough to know that I don't want to live anywhere else in the country except for the West Coast and the northern Nevada/Reno area.  I'd also make exceptions for parts of Montana and the North Idaho/Coeur D'Alene area.  ;)  The rest of the country though.....meh.  I don't really care what happens there.  My only concern is that, if we let the reds states go their own way, what happens when they inevitably collapse?  We'd have some Third World nations uncomfortably close for my taste.  

  •  excerpt email moveon.org (9+ / 0-)
    The Olympics are on now and the Romneys' dancing horse, Rafalca, is there to compete. The horse lives quite a cushy life on a 5,000-acre estate, with a chartered jet, and better healthcare than the average American family—including chiropractors and massages.

    The irony jumps out at you: Romney pampers that precious horse, but he can't wait to repeal affordable healthcare for Americans.

    moveon.org

    A former Bain Capital man and Romney supporter says income inequality shows our economy is working. Edward Conard, former managing director and partner at Bain Capital from 1993-2007, worked side-by-side with Mitt Romney.

    by anyname on Sun Jul 29, 2012 at 07:41:56 AM PDT

  •  My question is (8+ / 0-)

    WHY THE HELL DOES MISSISSIPPI KEEP VOTING THESE MOTHER FUCKERS IN?

    Are they that fucking stupid?  Surely some of them must realize that their lives are complete and utter shit.  

    This is your world These are your people You can live for yourself today Or help build tomorrow for everyone -8.75, -8.00

    by DisNoir36 on Sun Jul 29, 2012 at 07:43:37 AM PDT

    •  Their Only Alternative is Enemy of Their Clan nt (5+ / 0-)

      We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

      by Gooserock on Sun Jul 29, 2012 at 07:50:39 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Because communism failed (6+ / 0-)

      and anything that isn't unbridled capitalism must be communism. Moderation is alien to movement conservatives to an extent it will never be for progressives.

      Also, religion plays a major role. This is not only true in the more obvious areas of social policy, but also in labor policy, where working 70 hours a week is seen to be morally upright, while insisting on 40 hours and decent pay is greedy and slothful. Mammon can quote scripture to his own advantage, and does.

      Finally, there is group resentment. This includes racism, which definitely exists in Mississippi, but is not limited to it. People are made to look down on anyone below them on the totem pole (blacks, minimum wage workers, etc.), while seeing anyone immediately above them as a threat (public employees, blacks with decent jobs, college students, etc.).

      Male, 22, -4.75/-6.92, born and raised TN-05, now WI-02, remorseless supporter of Walker's recall. Pocan for Congress and Baldwin for Senate!

      by fearlessfred14 on Sun Jul 29, 2012 at 07:57:34 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I think that's a part of it (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        fearlessfred14

        But I also think at they see the world as a pie, and if somebody else gets more, they have to get less.

        Others see it as a plant. If you tend it and water it, it grows, giving you flowers, fruit, and seeds, which can create more plants. In that case, sharing doesn't diminish what you have, it just means there's more of it.

        Totally different world views.

  •  question (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Calamity Jean

    JFK was repeatedly asked if his allegiance was first to the constitution or to the Vatican--yet I never hear a similar question asked of Romney.  I don't like the question--but realize it is a powerful negative to much of the Republican base.  This election is important enough to borrow the R tactic from 1960.

    Apres Bush, le deluge.

    by melvynny on Sun Jul 29, 2012 at 07:46:06 AM PDT

  •  Breaking Bad... not a bad metaphor for Mittens... (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    StrayCat, judyms9, llywrch

    ... and the GOP.

    I'm a BIG fan of the series and there are a lot of parallels between this tragicomedy and the GOP... although I would probably rank Walter White's motivations higher than Mitt's...

    Karl Rove is a better example of a "Meth-cook"... the lies and criminal behavior he has concocted is highly addictive to the right and just as 99% pure as Walter White's blue ice. And Rove, Mittens, Kochs, et al , just like Walter, have become increasingly bold and unconcerned over who they will kill in their quest for power and money.  Mittens is going to wind up just like Gus, metaphorically and politically dead with half his face blown off in Rove's quest to eliminate middlemen...

    Yep... Modern GOP = Meth Lab

    Dudehisattva...

    "Generosity, Ethics, Patience, Effort, Concentration, and Wisdom"

    by Dood Abides on Sun Jul 29, 2012 at 07:54:51 AM PDT

  •  Math correction? (0+ / 0-)

    If I'm not mistaken, the Federal Poverty Level (FPL) for a single person is around $22,000.

    80% of FPL for "seniors and people with disabilities" would be more like $17,600 wouldn't it?

    Or am I missing something?

    Anyway, it's still lousy.

  •  It's about time 60 minutes, CNN, etc. just go (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    StrayCat, indres

    back to driving around in MS, Al, and some other hard hit areas and just show the misery to the American people
    The people that are voting for the gop are deluded because they are allowed to be deluded by big media.
    It's shameful.

    You can't make this stuff up.

    by David54 on Sun Jul 29, 2012 at 07:58:08 AM PDT

  •  I feel so bad for those children. (6+ / 0-)

    We are going to raise a generation of ignoramuses.

    I wish I could open a school and really teach kids, but I can't imagine how I could do that.

    This is just sad.

    Thank you, Jon, for your continuing excellent work. I'm so glad Markos finally noticed.

    "The difference between the right word and the almost-right word is like the difference between lightning and the lightning bug." -- Mark Twain

    by Brooke In Seattle on Sun Jul 29, 2012 at 08:01:11 AM PDT

    •  Privatize, privatize... (0+ / 0-)

      The republican platform is to privatize every last element within our society and remove any government entity that they describe as "interference."

      The kids will be sitting in classrooms brain dead from the lack of educational stimuli and then republicans will proclaim success.
      Success?
      Yes, because they will have built a system of schools that make them money, but offer squat in education.

      The republicans Shrangi-La is to make money on anything and everything because remember, everything that comes from government is bad and evil.

      Meth lab of democracy fits perfectly.

      "We can either have democracy in this country or we can have great wealth concentrated in the hands of a few, but we can't have both." Louis Brandeis

      by wxorknot on Sun Jul 29, 2012 at 08:23:49 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  many states have "tort reform" (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    StrayCat, SueDe, Calamity Jean, mmacdDE

    for medically related claims, some for decades (MICRA in CA). This does nothing to control costs, and everything to allow a broken system to persist while weakening victims rights.

    •  Same in Texas. (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      tegrat, Calamity Jean, indres, mmacdDE

      Doctors realized savings on their medical malpractice insurance for a short time, but that did not translate into lower health care costs.  Now the doctors' malpractice insurance costs are back on par with the national average, health care costs remain high, and patients have no protection against or accountability from either doctors or health care institutions that cause grievous and irreparable harm.

      "In this world of sin and sorrow there is always something to be thankful for; as for me, I rejoice that I am not a Republican." - H. L. Mencken

      by SueDe on Sun Jul 29, 2012 at 10:47:55 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  you know the best tort reform? (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      tegrat

      Universal coverage.

      If you know you'll always have care, never have huge bills, no matter whether you can work or not, a lot of the reason for suing over every little issue goes away.

      And if the doctor can do what they think is medically necessary and not just what the insurance will pay for, they practice medicine with a completely different view.

      Especially if they're paid a salary, and not just per service.

  •  doesn;t someone (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    judyms9, trueblueliberal

    saying they can't afford a copay say more about wages in Mississippi than health care?

    "It's almost as if we're watching Mitt Romney on Safari in his own country." -- Jonathan Capeheart

    by JackND on Sun Jul 29, 2012 at 08:20:17 AM PDT

  •  i teach international students at a university in (4+ / 0-)

    california, and i have a hard time explaining why each of the 50 states has its own set of laws - why something that is legal in oregon can land you in a texas dungeon eating baloney and mush

    is this any way to run a nation?

    I got the crabs from Christian Mingle!

    by memofromturner on Sun Jul 29, 2012 at 08:39:10 AM PDT

    •  It's because the US is a federation (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      fearlessfred14

      Switzerland has a similar structure, as well as India (although I'm not familiar how it works in detail there). Nothing truly wrong about a federation: while it has its drawbacks, it has its strengths. The eight years under the Shrub would have been far worse had he been in charge of a unity government such as France or Italy.

      I'm surprised you didn't know this fact. They taught this in Junior High back when I was a kid. I guess schools have since stopped teaching civics, along with making kids read the important parts of the Federalist Papers.

      •  go back and read my post (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        WheninRome, wsexson, FishOutofWater

        i teach at a major university (and was born during eisenhower's first term), so i think i took "civics" classes and probably know what a "federation" is

        my international students have a difficult time understanding the wondrousness of the real life consequences of our federation, which i believe is the topic of this diary

        thanks for the attempt at condecension, however

        I got the crabs from Christian Mingle!

        by memofromturner on Sun Jul 29, 2012 at 09:48:55 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  without checking for myself, (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    indres

    what has romney released so far that could be shielding a medical condition he's being treated/been treated for, that would disqualify him as a candidate ?

    or is this just a bad case of overnight indigestion causing lightheadedness (aka featherbrain syndrome) in your koggy bird ?

    Addington's Perpwalk: TRAILHEAD of Accountability for Bush-2 Crimes.
    * Join: OBAMA'S TRUTH TEAM *

    by greenbird on Sun Jul 29, 2012 at 08:45:17 AM PDT

  •  Know We Are Supposed To Bow Our Heads (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    indres

    when we talk about the Founding Fathers and the constitution. Think their emphasis on states rights though limits us greatly.

  •  On Day One a romney president will proclaim (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    annieli, jo fish, WheninRome

    that the Confederacy is being given a posthumous victory in the Civil War and will be setting the agenda for the nation, and everybody gets a free posthumous baptism for their trouble.  
    All I can say is "Walmart greeters, unite!"

    Romney went to France instead of serving in our military, got rich chop-shopping US businesses and eliminating US jobs, off-shored his money in the Cayman Islands, and now tells us to "Believe in America."

    by judyms9 on Sun Jul 29, 2012 at 08:55:46 AM PDT

  •  Fiefdom Federalism or Confederacy of Dunces: (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Egalitare

    the tenther fantasy, 1% pork barrels and bacon for baronial  rule for the American Taliban's Sharia States

    Präsidentenelf-maßschach"Nous sommes un groupuscule" (-9.50; -7.03) "Ensanguining the skies...Falls the remorseful day".政治委员, 政委‽ Warning - some snark above ‽

    by annieli on Sun Jul 29, 2012 at 08:58:36 AM PDT

  •  The reality of school choice... (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    annieli, kimoconnor, otto, Calamity Jean

    ...is that the school you "choose" is very often not obligated to accept you for a variety of reasons.

    When you are right you cannot be too radical; when you are wrong, you cannot be too conservative. --Martin Luther King Jr.

    by Egalitare on Sun Jul 29, 2012 at 08:59:41 AM PDT

  •  The Mississippi model for America (0+ / 0-)

    Mittens intends to complete what George W Bush started.

  •  Bomb, bomb, bomb (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    indres

    ..Bomb bomb Iran.

    Where have I heard this tune before?

    I want a living planet, not just a living room.

    by Anthony Page aka SecondComing on Sun Jul 29, 2012 at 09:12:40 AM PDT

    •  That's what they say (0+ / 0-)

      becausesay because it's easy to say. But it's not a serious option and they know it.

      The universe may have a meaning and a purpose, but it may just specifically not include you.

      by Anne Elk on Sun Jul 29, 2012 at 09:29:07 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  We need to nuke them (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        indres

        ..in order to keep the world free of nukes

        Republican logic 101

        I want a living planet, not just a living room.

        by Anthony Page aka SecondComing on Sun Jul 29, 2012 at 10:15:48 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Have you read what Romney's (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        WheninRome

        campaign staff has been saying about his "support" for Israel if they decide to attack Iran?  Have you noticed that Romney's foreign policy advisers are drawn from the Project for the New American Century, same as George W. Bush's team?   I wouldn't be so sure these people don't consider bombing Iran as "a serious option."

        "In this world of sin and sorrow there is always something to be thankful for; as for me, I rejoice that I am not a Republican." - H. L. Mencken

        by SueDe on Sun Jul 29, 2012 at 10:59:21 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  My Gramma in Texas (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Calamity Jean

    When my gramma was alive, she wasn't able to get Medicaid in Texas, because she made to much money.  She was living on SS and an extremely tiny retirement.  I'd guess she was living on roughly 800/month.  

    She ended up dying in a hospice as a result of lung cancer which went untreated for a long time.  She thought she was just under the weather, but that wasn't the case.  

    She was on medicare, but in small town TX, it's hard for a senior to get to the doctor, because there are no taxi services, and there aren't any civic institutions that support driving seniors around, and nobody from her church bothered to check on her.  

  •  To Haley Barbour: God forbid that you borrow (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    indres, trueblueliberal

    a car to go pick up your prescriptions because you don't have a car, there is no public transportation, or you can't afford to get your car out of the repair shop.

    That narrow minded judgemental mentality drives me nuts.

    "I like paying taxes. With them I buy civilization." - United States Supreme Court Associate Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes (Republican) -8.12, -5.18

    by ncarolinagirl on Sun Jul 29, 2012 at 10:06:35 AM PDT

    •  And there are BMWs and there are BMWs (0+ / 0-)

      A new one will set you back a pretty penny. A 30+ yr old one might set you back a couple thou, or less, depending on what shape it's in.

      Just because somebody has a 'BMW' doesn't mean theyre rich.

  •  I suggest (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Calamity Jean

    we make the term "Absolute Failure" in a search engine result in the Republican Party's Website coming up first.

    Education is a progressive discovery of our own ignorance.

    by Horace Boothroyd III on Sun Jul 29, 2012 at 11:19:24 AM PDT

  •  Older Bimmers are notoriously (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mmacdDE

    easy to work on and keep running and usually cheap to acquire.

  •  Romney's problem is he is too rich (0+ / 0-)

    He hears "public servants" and thinks "maids and gardeners."

    Public employees in general do complex work requiring significant education. (Most of the research analysts I used to supervise had master's degrees.) There aren't any burger-flippers in the mix. Therefore, the average public employee salary will by definition be higher than the average salary in the general population.

    I see letters to the editor expressing the same sentiment Romney did about "our servants" making more than us. No amount of reason ever gets through to most of these people, but as a former governor, Romney knows  better.

    You just have to wonder whether his brain ever engages when he flaps his jaws - no public employee makes more than he does!

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