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The New York Times Editorial Board states in The Syrian Pact:

President Obama deserves credit for putting a focus on upholding an international ban on chemical weapons and setting aside military action at this time in favor of a diplomatic deal. The Syria crisis should demonstrate to Iran’s new president, Hassan Rouhani, that Mr. Obama, who has held out the possibility of military action against Iran’s nuclear program, is serious about a negotiated solution. Mr. Obama’s disclosure that he had indirectly exchanged messages with Mr. Rouhani was encouraging.
John Nichols at The Nation writes The Populist Rebellion That Tripped Up Larry Summers:
Unfortunately, the Fed has a long history of serving Wall Street, while neglecting the rest of the country. This reality owes something to that fact that the Fed has been chaired by fiscal-policy insiders, be they Democrats or Republicans, be they theorists or doers. Fed chairs have tended to embrace the thinking of the free-market fundamentalists and free-trade absolutists who have created an economy characterized by declining wages and expanding income inequality. [...]

That’s why, as the speculation rose about the prospect that President Obama would select Summers, Democratic senators started announcing that they would vote with Republican critics of the administration to block confirmation of Summers.

E. J. Dionne Jr. at the Washington Post urges those who believe in stricter gun regulations to dust themselves off after last week's defeat and imitate the NRA's relentlessness in The Colorado recall’s morality lesson on guns:

Certainly Colorado shows that when sane legislation is enacted, its supporters need to sell the benefits far more effectively and to persuade more voters to see gun sanity as a make-or-break issue. And they should follow the NRA in never allowing setbacks to demobilize them.

But they also need to be clear that they seek background checks, smaller magazines and the like not to disempower gun owners but to liberate all of us from fears that madmen might gun down our children and wreak havoc in our communities.

Those of us who support gun regulations share with most gun owners a devotion to a rather old-fashioned world. We believe that the possession of firearms comes with responsibilities and that we need to take seriously our obligations to protect one another.

Leonard Pitts Jr. at the Miami Herald writes—Dead girls and the lives they might have lived:
This is for four women who are not here.

It is for grandchildren who never existed and retirement celebrations that were never held. It is for Sunday dinners that were never prepared in homes that were never purchased. It is for children who were never born and fathers who never got to walk daughters down the aisle. It is for mortarboards that were never flung into the air, for first kisses that were never stolen, for dreams that ended even as they still were being conceived.

This is for four little girls who died, 50 years ago today.

Barry O'Neill at the Los Angeles Times explains some relevant history in—The Founding Fathers made a push for 'international norms' of human behavior:
However the Syrian crisis turns out, it holds a lesson for American leaders. They have often been ready to confront those who violate international norms, such as Syrian President Bashar Assad, but reluctant to join worldwide agreements that express those norms. Such treaties would help deter the would-be perpetrators and would increase the legitimacy of actions taken against them.

American leaders have been suspicious of diplomacy and multilateral negotiating, but the founders took a different view. It was Benjamin Franklin who devised the first treaty provision restricting the conduct of future war, and at the behest of the new Congress, John Adams, John Jay and Thomas Jefferson helped bring it into force.

Richard Lamm, the former governor of Colorado who just turned 78, writes at the Denver Post, Society's unsustainable burden:
I am a fan and a friend of Dan Callahan, a medical ethicist who believes that beyond age 85 we should not make available expensive, high-technology medicine. At age 85, Callahan suggests we have had our "fair innings" (Norm Daniels' term) and that money would be better spent on the health needs of younger Americans who have not had their fair innings. I believe people over 85 should get ordinary medicine, kept pain free, but not the expensive high-technology medical miracles.

No other society would take a 90-year-old with a terminal disease out of a nursing home and put them into an intensive care unit. My wife and I were once at the bedside of a 93-year-old man with three fatal diseases (metastatic cancer of the prostate, end-stage kidney failure, and he had just been brought into the intensive care unit with a serious stroke). Massive resources were being poured into this gentleman, while blocks away people were going without primary care and kids were going without vaccinations. The nurse in the room asked the cosmic question: "When God calls, how much do we argue?"

Robert Fisk at The Independent is known for going for the jugular and he does in There is something deeply cynical about this chemical weapons ‘timetable’:
First – and let’s remember the narrative of events – Obama last year was really, terribly, awfully worried that Syria’s chemical weapons would “fall into the wrong hands”. In other words, he was frightened they would fall into the hands of al-Qa’ida or the al-Nusra front. Seemingly they were still, at that moment, in the “right hands” – those of the regime of President Bashar al-Assad of Syria. But now Obama and the US Secretary of State, John Kerry, have decided that they are in the wrong hands after all, since they are now accusing the “right hands” of firing sarin gas shells at civilians. And that crosses the infamous “red line”.

I am overlooking, for the moment, the almost magical moment when Kerry told the world that America’s strike would be “unbelievably small”, followed by Obama telling us all that he doesn’t do “pin pricks”. What does all this twaddle mean? [...]

Molly Redden at The New Republic writes that Liberals and Obama are Like College Sweethearts (After Graduation):
In piece for New York Magazine that ran in late 2011, Jonathan Chait argued that the persistent disappointment liberals feel is the product of self-sabotage. “Liberals are dissatisfied with Obama because liberals, on the whole, are incapable of feeling satisfied with a Democratic president. They can be happy with the idea of a Democratic president—indeed, dancing-in-the-streets delirious—but not with the real thing.” It’s a partial history of how liberals have never been satisfied with any Democratic president—not Obama, not Clinton, not Carter, not Johnson, not Kennedy, not Truman—at least not until after he had left office. Time and again, he wrote, these presidents failed to live up to liberals’ expectations in almost identical ways: “He is too accommodating, too timid, too unwilling or unable to inspire the populace.”

In other words, liberals keep calling things off with Obama for the same reason that a lot of serial couples split—someone’s expectations are just too idealistic.

Sarah Jaffe at In These Times writes—Nurses Taste Victory in Battle That Shook New York Politics:
The momentum in the fight to save Brooklyn's hospitals seems to have shifted decidedly to the side of the community, not the bosses.

Not only did the fight over the hospitals prove central to the mayoral primary, helping sweep Bill de Blasio from the back of the pack to near-certain Democratic nominee and overall favorite; not only did a judge step in last month to side with nurses in declaring that SUNY Downstate had no right to close Long Island College Hospital (LICH); but now, another judge has issued a sweeping ruling in favor of the nurses that may have consequences for other embattled institutions.

Debra F. Saunders at the San Francisco Chronicle occasionally comes down on the right side—as opposed to the rightist side—of things. She writes—Green Acres 94103:
In 2012, the federal government paid about $5 billion directly to farmers of wheat, corn, barley, oats, cotton, rice, soybeans, peanuts and other crops - except the recipients cannot all be farmers. According to the Environmental Working Group, 116 of those tillers of the earth reside in San Francisco. For their farming activities, they pocketed $446,302.

How is it, you might ask, that a government saddled with $17 trillion in debt can afford to send checks to more than 18,000 urban farmers? The working group's vice president, Scott Faber, calls the direct payments program "one of the most ridiculous" government programs in recent history, as it pays "farm subsidies to farmers regardless of whether they have suffered a loss or whether they even planted a crop."

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Comment Preferences

    •  I did, about 2 years ago. (4+ / 0-)

      It was fascinating.  The New Deal was a shadow of what it started out to be, so insignificant due to compromise and Republican intransigence it could never fix the serious problems this nation faces, Social Security, intended to secure the lives of the elderly, was an insult, leaving too many with nothing and all with not enough.  Then I searched Medicare-- same thing, a sellout, dealt away in smoky back room deals.  Civil Rights legislation- more raging against compromise and accommodating racists.  Then I looked at Democrats rejection of Carter, McGovern, Humphrey, Kerry and Gore during their respective runs and the Op-Eds could have been taken direct from RW think tanks.  As soon as Republicans started calling them weak, ineffectual, waffling, Democrats piled on like obedient lemmings.  It was an eye-opening day on the Internet, and I'm a wretched researcher.  

      It might be a worthwhile exercise for today's disaffected lefties.  Many of the headlines could have been mistaken for wreck list titles during the ACA battles, the anger with the Stimulus, Obama's efforts to block Republican sabotage of the economy, Dodd-Frank's process and final form.

      We have a longstanding love/hate relationship with power and governing, seem most comfortable as the opposition party pointing out the failures of the ruling party.  Compromise and negotiating are anathema, power is assumed to be absolute once attained.  

      I'm not looking for a love that will lift me up and carry me away. A love that will stroll alongside and make a few amusing comments will suffice.

      by I love OCD on Mon Sep 16, 2013 at 06:29:23 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  ..... online working ..... (0+ / 1-)
      Recommended by:
      Hidden by:
      Tempus Figits

      I make up to $90 an hour working from my home. My story is that I quit working at Walmart to work online and with a little effort I easily bring in around $4Oh to $86h… Someone was good to me by sharing this link with me, so now i am hoping i could help someone else out there by sharing this link... Try it, you won't regret it!...  

       http://xurl.es/...

  •  Saunders: "Why is Obama paying SF liberals for (0+ / 0-)

    not farming?" (At least that is her usual MO.) (the rightest side.)

    You can't make this stuff up.

    by David54 on Mon Sep 16, 2013 at 04:45:21 AM PDT

  •  Thanks for the roundup, MB, good selection! (10+ / 0-)

    I think Dionne is on to something when he urges us to be as relentless as the NRA in pursuing our goals and not giving up too easily.

    And I'm encouraged by the results of "fighting back"--both Sarah Jaffe item and the fact that Summers has withdrawn from consideration as head of the Fed.

    Things could be worse.

    "Religion is what keeps the poor from murdering the rich."--Napoleon

    by Diana in NoVa on Mon Sep 16, 2013 at 04:46:10 AM PDT

    •  could be a lot worse (6+ / 0-)
      But even some staunch supporters of gun rights concede that advocates of stronger legislation have won some striking victories.

      “I think the Bloomberg side made very significant progress in some states,” said Dave Kopel, a lawyer and the Second Amendment project director at the Independence Institute, a research group.

      “When you look at the state scoreboard,” Mr. Kopel said, “they’re roughly in a position of parity this year, which is doing well for them.”

      http://www.nytimes.com/...

      "It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends upon his not understanding it!" — Upton Sinclair

      by Greg Dworkin on Mon Sep 16, 2013 at 04:55:29 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Maybe liberals are remembering that HUGE ORGASM (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Stude Dude

    they got from their first love Franklin Delano Roosevelt called Social Security , 000hhhh, or that HUGE ORGASM they got from Lyndon Johnson called Medicare, OOohhh that turned to disappointmment with Viiet Nam (you had sex with WHO???). . Maybe we are still waiting for that HUGE ORGASM from Obama? The ACA feels nice but it's just foreplay. Maybe if he'd taken his clothes off for Single Payer Healthcare -OOOoohhhh, instead of going for keep his clothes on and copping a feel with ACA we wouldn't be mooning over FDR.

    Slow thinkers - keep right

    by Dave the Wave on Mon Sep 16, 2013 at 04:48:04 AM PDT

    •  Need a tiny pinprick of brain bleach (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Tempus Figits

      now!

      Hi NSA. I am doing constitutionally protected stuff - like free speech. Too bad you are not!

      by glitterscale on Mon Sep 16, 2013 at 05:35:30 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  Ah the why didn't Obama go for single payer (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      TexasTom, Tempus Figits

      Maybe because he knew it would NEVER PASS. It also because he was very clear throughout his campaign that single payer was not on the table. Did you think he was kidding?

      If you are against sane gun regulations then by definition you support 30,000 deaths a year by firearms.

      by jsfox on Mon Sep 16, 2013 at 06:06:28 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I Didn't Thhink President Bush Could Sell (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Meteor Blades

        The Iraq war, which very few people fervently wanted.  However, he did just like P&G sells soap.  He used an advertising campaign for the war that scared the bejeebus out of people.  Republicans are ingeniously masterful at selling unpopular policies.  Fear is a powerful motivator.

        The thing is that President Obama didn't even try for single payer.  An acquaintance who works for United Health Care smugly bragged to me, "We wrote that bill (the ACA)."

        President Obama didn't fight for it or anything as Van Jones, Susan Rice and Elizabeth Warren found out.

        The only policy that President Obama is STILL tenaciously fighting for is Social Security and Medicare benefit cuts.

        If I was a communist, rich men would fear me...And the opposite applies. The history of all hitherto existing society is the history of class struggles.

        by stewarjt on Mon Sep 16, 2013 at 08:51:01 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  Not even a public option (0+ / 0-)

        Thanks to Ben Nelson of "Cornhusker Kickback" fame and a handful of other senate DINO's, who threatened to filibuster the final ACA bill if a public option were included, it died in negotiations.  Back then, conservative Democrats presented more obstruction to sane legislation  than the Republicans.  It's no wonder liberals are not always satisfied when Democrats win.

        "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 Mon Sep 16, 2013 at 08:53:27 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  What amazes me is that some people (0+ / 0-)

        continue to delude themselves that Obama is a leftist :D

        He's a confirmed middle-of-the-roader and swings whichever way the wind blows him.  Now that he's Preznit, he listens to the banks, mostly.

        They REALLY want a war with Syria!  But sigh they will have to wait until a suitable false flag can be arranged that will pass muster with the public and scare everyone enough that they support a new war effort.

        By my count, there are only THREE countries left without Rothchild central banks:  Iran, North Korea and Cuba.  (In 2000 there were seven countries.  One of the first things the US backed "rebels" in many of them (like, say...Lybia for instance?) did after taking over, was to establish a central bank.

        Control of money creation is at the bottom of all this messy war stuff:  https://www.youtube.com/...

        and this
        https://www.youtube.com/...

  •  15 Days til the end of the world........Obamacare (5+ / 0-)

    Implementation.

  •  Nichols, one of my favorite hacks: (5+ / 0-)
    Unfortunately, the Fed has a long history of serving Wall Street, while neglecting the rest of the country
    Gee John, what a great observation!  And why is that, do you suppose?

    How is it that the U.S., with only "two" parties, always seems to have the same economic policies advanced?

    There's a real mystery there, aye!  

    Perhaps we could assemble a crack team of status quo political apparatchiks to get to the bottom of this great impenetrable mystery?

    /sarcasm

    Why, just the other day, President Obama (D) was pushing for Wall Street advocate Larry Summers to be the new Fed Chairman.  

    Poor Larry had to withdraw.. what a shame Obama already gave the Treasury Secretary spot to a Wall Street Bankster (Jack Lew), otherwsie Larry might have had that as a consolation prize.

    Damn those Rethuglicans!  /snark

    Waking Up Yet?

    The excuses for Obama's behavior have long since passed the point of predictability neccessary to qualify as an absurd production of Kabuki Theater.

    by Johnathan Ivan on Mon Sep 16, 2013 at 04:56:52 AM PDT

    •  One thing to be thankful for - (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Johnathan Ivan

      Tim Geithner says he's not interested in the job.

      "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 Mon Sep 16, 2013 at 09:13:12 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Wall Street's bag man has worked hard (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        SueDe

        enough apparently.  He's probably wanting to relax and take it easy.

        He's at the Council on Foreign Relations.. I'm sure they'll make him a nice comfy spot.

        The excuses for Obama's behavior have long since passed the point of predictability neccessary to qualify as an absurd production of Kabuki Theater.

        by Johnathan Ivan on Mon Sep 16, 2013 at 09:39:56 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  As a liberal, I'm not here to fall in love... (22+ / 0-)

    with any politician, but to support a series of ideals (and ideas) that I believe help the nation and people in general. When the president supports those ideals, I support him. When he opposes those ideals, I oppose him.

    Leave it to the conservatives to treat politics like a father-figure cult. Let them worry about turning guys who acted alongside a chimp, and guys who just acted like a chimp, into icons. I'm not interested in hiring  an idol or anointing a messiah..

    Obama is not my dad, my bestest bud, or even my friend. He's my president. I reserve the right to cheer, or boo, when appropriate.

    Molly Redden is looking at the situation with conservative-colored glasses.

    •  Excellent points as long as that sensible view is (13+ / 0-)

      applied to the work of doing our part at the one instant of time when our view has a practical effect as we cast a vote.

      Back in a time when civics was taught as a subject in grade, middle and high school I got the idea that voting was like housekeeping or farming. It was not to fall in love. Not to get excited about. It was sanitation, making good things grow and pulling weeds, mucking out the shit, unplugging toilets as well as the pleasure of seeing things clean and working. Back in that day "progressive" had a definite connotation of pragmatic, good government, make things work and keep the shit out action. If I recall correctly the "progressive movement" started with exactly that, not some starry eyed utopia now requirement.

      What I snarl about, often reading things right here, is the "if I don't see it all now I won't vote" crap. Frankly, after watching since the 1950s, I've seen only a few "demonstrations" that had much effect. Even those took repeated efforts and background hard work as with the civil rights movement. Marching about, carrying signs, chanting slogans has damn all effect if you then stay at home and fail at that one couple of minutes when a vote can send some politician to oblivion or put one on track to do at least some of that civic housekeeping that must be done.

      Flushing the toilet isn't particularly satisfying, just necessary—else the crap builds up and overflows.

      Changing the oil isn't joyous, doesn't turn your Ford into a "sexy beast" or even a joy to drive, it just keeps the engine going.

      Political action without voting is largely self pleasuring without other effect.

      The only foes that threaten America are the enemies at home, and those are ignorance, superstition, and incompetence. [Elbert Hubbard]

      by pelagicray on Mon Sep 16, 2013 at 05:43:44 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  In keeping with Molly's metaphor... (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      tb mare, colinm, SueDe

      The initial courtship was wonderful with our beau promising the moon and the stars. Once we committed to the relationship, the abuse started almost immediately. Sure, there were some nice times, but our needs and wants never mattered, and sometimes he just seemed to enjoy beating on us to impress the other frat guys. We got angry and threatened to leave, but four years later he talked us into staying. And really, where else were we going to go? Once we committed the second time, we found that nothing had changed (not that we really expected it to). And now Molly's telling us that there is something wrong with us because we don't like being lied to and abused. We're just too sensitive and emotional.

      Conservatives are so full of shit.

    •  It always boggles my mind that these experts (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Mark Sumner

      are so surprised that we disappointed liberals still supported Obama in the last election.  Who were we going to support, Romney?  We may be disappointed but we're not stupid.  We knew (know) that if we were to stay home or vote for a "third" party that the end result would have been a President Romney.

      Now we may know that Obama's ideals don't always (actually seldom) align with ours but we also know that Romney's would not just fail to align, but be in total opposition to our ideals.

      We also know that it's likely we end up in the toilet with either option, with Obama we have somewhat of a chance to divert the inevitable, but with Romney the path there is more direct and he would have flushed.

  •  I'm logging off until you restore the margins (0+ / 0-)

    Site looks like a sympathy card.

  •  outbreak of peace? (4+ / 0-)

    could it be possible?

    a decade after W Bush lied us into Iraq war in spite of millions around the world demonstrating against it?

    peace is too much to hope for, these days not bombing, for now, is a huge success

    Syria Is an Epic Victory for the Superpower of Peace

    Harvey Wasserman writes mostly about nuclear issues including a couple of books. He also writes about election integrity.

    The United States is not now bombing Syria.

    Let’s savor that again: for the moment at least, the United States is not now bombing Syria.

    That alone qualifies as an epic, unprecedented victory for the SuperPower of Peace, the global movement to end war, win social justice and somehow salvage our ecological survival.

  •  Dick Lamm is on to something. I know that the (20+ / 0-)

    half-term half-wit will scream "death panels", but we need to make much greater use of hospice care. Many folks do not enter hospice until a few days before they pass. Hospice is fully paid for my Medicare, and it means that those with terminal illnesses will not suffer pain in their final days. My mom, who died a few week before her 93rd birthday, received wonderful care in hospice.

  •  There are some good points in Lamm's piece (8+ / 0-)

    such as this:

    Among the 19 wealthy countries, the United States ranked 19th in curing people who could be cured with decent care. The number of people under 75 who die from curable illness was almost twice as high in the United States as the best on this measure from France, Japan and Spain, writes T.R. Reid. We have technologically brilliant medicine, but a morally flawed health care system.
    but others are questionable:
    At age 85, Callahan suggests we have had our "fair innings" (Norm Daniels' term) and that money would be better spent on the health needs of younger Americans who have not had their fair innings. I believe people over 85 should get ordinary medicine, kept pain free, but not the expensive high-technology medical miracles.
    To which I say not all age alike.  There are 85 yo out there still playing golf and 60+ who are unable to walk unassisted.

    Then there is this:

    Why give chemotherapy or even antibiotics to people with end-stage Alzheimer's disease?
    Okay, maybe not chemo, but to withhold antibiotics?  I don't get that one at all.

    As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them. John F. Kennedy

    by JaxDem on Mon Sep 16, 2013 at 05:14:04 AM PDT

    •  antibiotics by mouth (4+ / 0-)

      vs antibiotics IV, ie hospital vs at home or hospice. Different animals.

      "It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends upon his not understanding it!" — Upton Sinclair

      by Greg Dworkin on Mon Sep 16, 2013 at 05:27:12 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  We can't, as a culture, face aging. Death is (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        coquiero, JaxDem

        incomprehensible.  If we ever get the whole cycle of life thing we'll be able to make structural changes in medical care.  My sister needed Hospice a month before we called and asked- her doctor had suggested it 2 months prior to that call.  She was 37 and we demanded a miracle, in our minds.  Mom was on Hospice for 2 years.  Her dementia didn't qualify her but she started having cardiac events- radical drop in blood pressure, trouble oxygenating due to low heart rate.  A radically wise and kind EMT told us that if they transported her we could not be present during her various procedures once admitted and might be prevented from staying beside her in ICU or CCU.  She was 85 and at early toddler level.  That was advice we sought and valued.  Hospice gave us a respite from 24 hour care.  They took over showering, watched her for bedsores, provided a magic air mattress that kept pressure off her joints and skin, taught us what do during her "events".  They assigned volunteers to give us shopping and rest hours.  They were wonderful helpers when she finally slipped away, and she died peacefully without excessive pain.  

        I'm not looking for a love that will lift me up and carry me away. A love that will stroll alongside and make a few amusing comments will suffice.

        by I love OCD on Mon Sep 16, 2013 at 06:52:35 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  If you're an 85 yo still playing golf... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      ratcityreprobate

      ...changes are you are not in imminent need of "expensive high-technology medical miracles."

      My grandmother was tending to her household and most of her needs up until she was 93. She declined rapidly and died at age 96 living with her youngest son those last years. She died mostly on her own terms: no "heroic" or "extraordinary procedures" to extend her life a few more months.

      Living well late in life is largely luck of the draw. My father died of heart disease at age 78. His older brother died a couple years ago of heart failure at age 91. They were both non smokers and "social occasion" drinkers (and even then my father nursed a glass an entire event). If I get to and past 85 and I'm not still vigorous enough to negotiate the stairs, I certainly hope that my family gets it that I don't want expensive procedures that might extend my life a few more months or less just because they exist.

      Minimize my pain and let me go when "it's time." Please.

      Change does not roll in on the wheels of inevitability, but comes through continuous struggle. --Martin Luther King Jr.

      by Egalitare on Mon Sep 16, 2013 at 06:47:32 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  My mother is 92 with Alzheimer's. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      JaxDem

      Her Living Will requests no medical intervention if she is at a level where she can non longer independently manage her ADLs (activities of daily living). She is decidedly there and then some now so we will withhold antibiotics if she should get, say, a urinary tract infection. It is her wish as expressed and codified years ago when she was compus mentas (sp?).

    •  JaxDem is right. We don't all age the same way. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      JaxDem

      My mother will turn 100 in November.  She still drives (never had an accident or ticket), goes to the gym 5 days a week and walks a mile, plus does separate weight training 3 of those days, and has a part-time job doing admin work in a real estate office.  She also volunteers in the community and warbles in the church choir.  She has gone through 3 bouts of cancer (lung, breast and melanoma) and one of pneumonia since she "retired" at 75.  In other words, she still contributes to society.

      When would Mr. Lamm have cut off health care for her?

      "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 Mon Sep 16, 2013 at 09:33:41 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Sue, that's a fantastic real life story (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        SueDe

        to illustrate the point.  And God bless your mom!  I would be honored to know her.  Thanks for sharing and tell her she's a hero!

        As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them. John F. Kennedy

        by JaxDem on Mon Sep 16, 2013 at 12:25:01 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I would, but she doesn't like to be (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          JaxDem

          "singled out."  She refused to attend church on Mother's Day this year, because they always give a white rose bouquet to the oldest mother in the congregation, and she knew she would receive it.  She received it last year, and she was embarrassed to tears.  

          Some of her friends (in their 70s and 80s) earlier this year started planning a big bash of a birthday party for her 100th, and she kept telling them, over and over for months, that she didn't want a big party.  She wanted her friends to take her out to dinner, that's all.  Finally during her last objection she broke down in tears and begged them to stop planning the party and telling everyone about it, and they have now decided to honor her wishes.  About a dozen people will take her out to dinner, and that's it.

          Maybe her attitude about being "honored" is just a product of the times she grew up in.  I don't know, but I figure at her age she shouldn't be forced to do anything she doesn't want to do.

          "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 Mon Sep 16, 2013 at 01:49:42 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

  •  Morality of whistleblowing/immorality of obedience (4+ / 0-)
    Tellingly, a recent Time magazine cover story has pointed out a marked generational difference in how people view these matters: 70 percent of those age 18 to 34 sampled in a poll said they believed that Snowden “did a good thing” in leaking the news of the National Security Agency’s surveillance program.

    So has the younger generation lost its moral compass?

    No. In my view, just the opposite.

    ---Peter Ludlow
    http://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com/...

    Be the change you want to see in the world. -Gandhi

    by DRo on Mon Sep 16, 2013 at 05:14:05 AM PDT

  •  Happy to see Summers quashed. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Hillbilly Dem, Stude Dude, coquiero

    Would be happier if the leading alternative candidate, Yellen, were not Summers Lite.

    LG: You know what? You got spunk. MR: Well, Yes... LG: I hate spunk!

    by dinotrac on Mon Sep 16, 2013 at 05:23:13 AM PDT

    •  Yellin would be worlds better than Summers (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Meteor Blades

      ever would.  We're not going to get Richard Wolfe or even Joseph Stiglitz as Fed chairman.

      "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 Mon Sep 16, 2013 at 09:43:59 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Given that the Reign of Fed Chairs starting with (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Stude Dude, coquiero

    our dear Mr Volcker has been governed by a drive to beat inflation into submission.  Unfortunately this also coincides with the decline in real wages for people who actually have to work for a living....

    I want 1 less Tiny Coffin, Why Don't You? Support The President's Gun Violence Plan.

    by JML9999 on Mon Sep 16, 2013 at 05:27:45 AM PDT

  •  Lamm's basic assumption is off base; (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    salmo, tb mare

    At 89 my father was far into Alzheimer's disease and a failing circulatory/respiratory system. As a disabled vet who had been in the Battle of the Bulge he was entitled to be in a VA hospital (side note; it was the cleanest, best staffed hospital I had ever been in) and the doctor told us they could do surgery to enhance his respiration and circulation and we declined knowing that his quality of life had gone to about zero some time ago. So he died in the VA hospice a few days later.

    Lamm is off base because his method for conserving medical resources assumes some sort of bureaucracy that would make these decisions instead of them being made by the individual or the individuals family. There is no way to construct such a bureaucracy that would not be flawed either through corruption or privilege or whatever.

    The answer is to make all levels of medical care available to all citizens. Expensive yes, but not impossible if for instance we could do with a few less aircraft carriers or if there were a small uptick in taxes on the rich or on stock profits, etc. combined with some cost controls on medical devices and procedures. And what is our purpose as a society if not to try to give each person, no matter how old or sick or deranged as much time on earth as possible?  

    •  terrible answer (4+ / 0-)

      ICUs for everyone? There aren't enough resources in the world for that, and, btw, no one else in the world does that. We do too much of it as it is, not too little.

      Researchers studying critical care in four intensive care units at large medical centers report that almost 11 percent of patients received care that their doctors considered futile.
      And you want to increase that?

      "It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends upon his not understanding it!" — Upton Sinclair

      by Greg Dworkin on Mon Sep 16, 2013 at 05:39:28 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I want to keep the choice making in the hands of (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        tb mare

        the individual and family/extended family. Doctor's, nurses, clergy etc. can certainly improve their skills at explaining a patients condition and odds of recovery, quality of life, etc. but unless I am missing something they don't get to be the "plug pullers" now nor should they be.

        And then there is profit...had a girl friend dying of "wild fire" lung cancer at age 35. She was pretty much gone already with a morphine drip. etc. and in comes a surgeon to drain her lungs of fluid. She screamed as we held her down while he performed what sure seemed to be a futile procedure but I was not her health proxy and her nurse was crying and begging the doc to just leave her alone but the family had not been consulted and so on he went with the procedure. My guess is he was paid well for his work. So that is one case where if the family understood the futility of the effort they would have nixed it.

        So in the study you reference above about ICU's was there any information about what was or wasn't the information shared with the family or individual in those cases of futile services provided?

    •  a much better answer (8+ / 0-)

      is realistic expectations and aid in dying with dignity, which does not mean ICUs and futile care. More hospice, more long term care coverage. Less "everything possible".

      "It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends upon his not understanding it!" — Upton Sinclair

      by Greg Dworkin on Mon Sep 16, 2013 at 05:40:47 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Docs have to do a better job of communicating (4+ / 0-)

        I personally know of two cases where seniors didn't even know they were going to die within 6 months because the doctor wasn't able to lay it on the line without a lot of medical jargon that the senior didn't understand.

        In one case, the child had to get involved and actually tell the doctor to give her mother the plain-language truth.

        In the other case, the ER people switched the patient to hospice, where it was finally made clear what the patient's condition was.

        •  absolutely yes (5+ / 0-)

          see this,as well.

          Jargon: Boy, this one is tough. I’ve got a pretty good jargon detector, but after watching the docs speak to Mom for a few days, I realized that half of what I say is probably unintelligible to my patients. One of the surgeons, who I regard as a fabulous communicator, came in one day to talk about Mom’s surgical options. “We can go in there and try to lyse the adhesions, but this only will work if we can find a focal lesion,” he said. Not the worst I’ve heard, but listening through my mother’s ears, I realized that she did not understand anything after, ‘We can go in there…” On our rounds, perhaps we should appoint one team member to be our official jargon-detector, offering the speaker feedback in an effort to sensitive all of us to this pernicious problem. (Sure, the patient-centered view would have us empower patients to speak up if they don’t understand something, but I think few patients will. Certainly not my mom – unfailingly polite, she just shook her head in agreement, despite understanding very little).
          http://thehealthcareblog.com/...

          "It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends upon his not understanding it!" — Upton Sinclair

          by Greg Dworkin on Mon Sep 16, 2013 at 05:53:30 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

      •  I agree, but some patients will make the (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Greg Dworkin, coquiero

        "everything possible" choice in their advance directives, then where are you?

        I agree wholeheartedly with more hospice and expanded hospice home care assistance.  The home health visits that are prompted after a hospital stay were worthless in my experience and a complete rip off.  Home physical therapy was very good and I wish there had been more of that instead.

        As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them. John F. Kennedy

        by JaxDem on Mon Sep 16, 2013 at 05:54:15 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  The last time congress tried to include (0+ / 0-)

        "more long term care" to Medicare by raising taxes on the rich and a small rise in Medicare premiums, seniors revolted, chased Dan Rostenkowski down a Chicago street threatening his physical safety, and caused the law to be repealed.  Elderly folks might be more amenable to it these days, but since many older Americans are now teapartiers, maybe not.

        "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 Mon Sep 16, 2013 at 09:55:04 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  I often wonder if what Redden says is true. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Tempus Figits

    Certainly seems that way.

  •  Diane Ravitch has an important new book (4+ / 0-)

    which is officially out tomorrow

    Yesterday I posted a detailed (and somewhat lengthy) review of it, a review she thought very much got what she was doing with the book

    I invite you to read Reign of Error: the important new book by Diane Ravitch

    "We didn't set out to save the world; we set out to wonder how other people are doing and to reflect on how our actions affect other people's hearts." - Pema Chodron

    by teacherken on Mon Sep 16, 2013 at 05:39:33 AM PDT

  •  Dionne, this is asinine & this is why gun control (0+ / 0-)

    loses:

    "liberate all of us from fears that madmen might gun down our children and wreak havoc in our communities."
    It is far more likely (yet still extraordinarily unlikely) that a child will be kidnapped by a sick fuck in a van: Does that mean banning vans will 'liberate all of us from fears that madmen might kidnap our children'?
    Would warrantless wiretaps "liberate all of us from fears that madmen might attack us"?
    What about Gitmo? Has that 'liberated all of us'?
    Has torture 'liberated us from fear'?

    Asking people to give away liberties isn't going to 'liberate' anybody from fear, from madmen nor from anything else.
    This arrogant, hypocritical & utterly clueless attitude is exactly why gun bans fail time and again.
    We're not stupid, we're not afraid, we're not guilty & we're not going to give away liberties for a laughably false promise of 'liberation'.

    Those who would sacrifice liberty for security deserve neither.

    by FrankRose on Mon Sep 16, 2013 at 05:43:03 AM PDT

    •  gun legislation doesn't always lose (4+ / 0-)

      The CT republican that sponsored our legislation will move on and run for Governor.

      “I think the Bloomberg side made very significant progress in some states,” said Dave Kopel, a lawyer and the Second Amendment project director at the Independence Institute, a research group.

      “When you look at the state scoreboard,” Mr. Kopel said, “they’re roughly in a position of parity this year, which is doing well for them.”

      http://www.nytimes.com/...

      Keep it reasonable 9that's the key), and we'll keep making progress.

      "It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends upon his not understanding it!" — Upton Sinclair

      by Greg Dworkin on Mon Sep 16, 2013 at 05:51:17 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  You won't get any argument out of me that (0+ / 0-)

        gun control helps elect Republicans.

        However, support for gun control, political & otherwise drops once you can no longer smell the ocean.

        Regardless of the 'bigger picture' read that OpEd, "gun manufactures lobby", "liberate us from fear", "gun extremists",

        For god's sake, without an iota of self awareness the  Georgetown professor & Senior fellow of the Brookings institution, congratulates Bloomberg on his attempts to ban guns & applies this completely invented statement to explain opposition: "If you feel your power ebbing, grab a gun & don't let the elitists disarm you because the disdain you and your way of life"
        Never mind that his entire 'understanding' of the opposition comes from what a single pollster told him this one time; This is an elitist, disdaining people & their way of life while trying to disarm them & simultaneously mocking them for thinking that....thoughts he knows because he talked to a pollster once.
        This isn't even a 'straw-man', because the word 'straw-man' suggests something that has a form instead of this pile of.....whatever the fuck it is.

        Holy fuck, the man invents his opposition's viewpoints & then dismisses it by doing exactly what he claims he isn't doing.
        Reading that OpEd is like the movie "Inception" that uses stupidity, lack of self-awareness & hypocrisy in lieu of dreams.
        It is such an exorcise in self-love I hope the man had a cigarette after that piece of self-congratulatory porn.

        Those who would sacrifice liberty for security deserve neither.

        by FrankRose on Mon Sep 16, 2013 at 06:15:38 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

    •  Stranger kidnappings in the US (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      salmo, TexasTom, Tempus Figits

      Have been dropping for decades. Yes, it's terrible when it occurs, but rare enough that almost every such case becomes not just local, but national news. I believer the number nationwide is about 115 a year. How that compares to gun "madmen" would have to depend on what you consider mad.

      No other comment except that the "sick fuck in a van" is way, way down the list of threats, no matter how often it features on Criminal Minds.

    •  A child is much more likely to shot be (6+ / 0-)

      a family member (or themselves) than to be kidnapped by some sick fuck in a van.

      "Drudge: soundslike sludge, islike sewage."
      (-7.25, -6.72)

      by gougef on Mon Sep 16, 2013 at 05:56:14 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  And far less likely to be killed in a school (0+ / 0-)

        shooting.

        But thank you for illustrating exactly what is already common knowledge; the end game for gun controllers is confiscation/banning of all guns.

        And you wonder why you're not trusted.

        Those who would sacrifice liberty for security deserve neither.

        by FrankRose on Mon Sep 16, 2013 at 06:21:23 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  With the flair of being an ASS, you ASSume (3+ / 0-)

          something about me.

          I don't give a damn what weapons you own. Buy a fucking M-1 Tank if you want to.

          All I want is people to be responsible. You buy a weapon, you are responsible for it until it legally leaves you hands. There are NO accidents when it comes to guns.

          And stop be a damn drama king, "..end game for gun controllers is confiscation/banning of all guns." Yeah, right, that's going to happen in the US.

          And let me part with this, "A life lived in fear ain't worth living.."

          "Drudge: soundslike sludge, islike sewage."
          (-7.25, -6.72)

          by gougef on Mon Sep 16, 2013 at 06:47:03 AM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  Confiscating all guns is the only thing that (0+ / 0-)

            your given stat would be relevant for.

            "A life lived in fear ain't worth living"
            I couldn't agree more.
            I can only assume that you are also against both the AWB & magazine bans, seeing as how fear is the only justification for both.

            Those who would sacrifice liberty for security deserve neither.

            by FrankRose on Mon Sep 16, 2013 at 06:55:03 AM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  You're starting to lose it, Frank (0+ / 0-)

              You're not even making sense anymore.

              Pointing out that children are usually shot by family members is advocating for gun confiscation?

              Nonsensical.

              I blog about my daughter with autism at her website

              by coquiero on Mon Sep 16, 2013 at 09:09:14 AM PDT

              [ Parent ]

              •  Not at all. (0+ / 0-)

                Both Dionne's & my theoretical van situation were explorations in the banning of objects.

                Using the example he used in this context is only relevant if gougef was suggesting banning all guns.

                But, then again, you have been unable to follow your own repeated suggestion of ignoring me:
                Why would you be expected to follow a conversation?

                Those who would sacrifice liberty for security deserve neither.

                by FrankRose on Mon Sep 16, 2013 at 09:30:59 AM PDT

                [ Parent ]

  •  How old is Robert Fisk? (0+ / 0-)

    He's turning into Grandpa Simpson.

    Gee, Mr. Fisk, what could have possibly happened at the end of the summer of 2013 to change how the US looked at Syria's chemical weapons? Why, I just can't imagine.

    Oh, nice use of "accusing the “right hands” of firing sarin gas shells at civilians." Why, we just don't know. It's just an accusation. eye roll

    Art is the handmaid of human good.

    by joe from Lowell on Mon Sep 16, 2013 at 07:08:31 AM PDT

  •  Regarding Richard Lamm (0+ / 0-)

    Mr. Lamm offers a false dilemma: adequate medical care for the young or the old, but not both.  

    The US has the ability and the resources to take care of everyone, young and old.  The rich are always going to be okay regardless.  They need to pay their fair share or more in taxes so that all people can have a decent life, food, shelter, education and medical care.

    Medical care shouldn't be a for profit enterprise.  No one chooses to get sick or old.  They should be taken care of without someone profiting off their illness or age.  That's how a humane society behaves.

    If I was a communist, rich men would fear me...And the opposite applies. The history of all hitherto existing society is the history of class struggles.

    by stewarjt on Mon Sep 16, 2013 at 08:42:33 AM PDT

  •  Liberals, please shut up and clap louder. (0+ / 0-)

    Thanks!

    -Molly Redden

    What was wrong under Republicans is still wrong under Democrats.

    by gila on Mon Sep 16, 2013 at 09:21:55 AM PDT

  •  Progressive expectations were set by Obama. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    stewarjt

    The stark difference between campaign Obama and President Obama explains 99% of the gap between what progressives expected and what they got.

    Journalism is printing what someone else does not want printed: everything else is public relations. - George Orwell

    by Wayward Son on Mon Sep 16, 2013 at 09:41:51 AM PDT

  •  The true unsustainable burdens (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    stewarjt

    There simply aren't enough 85 year-olds needing high monetary cost medical interventions to make a difference in our nation's total medical care budget.  They are not the reason our medical costs are so high.  Those total costs are high because we have prices for individual medical interventions that average 2-3 times what they cost in other countries, not because we do more such interventions.  

    Medical services cost that much in this country because we allow cartels in health insurance and medical care.  That's our true unsustainable burden, at least insofar as we have a cost problem in medicine.

    Another unsustainable burden we carry is that we tolerate people like Lamm spouting off as corporate shills, while posing as elder statesmen.  He wants us to believe that the problem isn't the cartels charging 2-3 times what they actually cost, the problem is that 85 year-old who needs a heart bypass.  Brilliant.

    Sure, no doubt there are cases you could find of 85 year olds receiving the sort of unnecessary, highly invasive and highly expensive care that Lamm cites.  That our system tolerates, even in some ways promotes, inflicting such care in even a few cases is no doubt a problem.  But that's a quality of care problem, not a cost of care problem.

    Because high monetary cost almost always derives from high invasiveness, and therefore high human cost to the patient, high quality care involves using highly invasive and expensive interventions only when the benefit is substantial enough to justify the human cost.  But that trade-off is highly individualized.  No doubt some 85 year-olds are dying of three different diseases, and it would be a travesty to do something invasive to them that has no chance of improving their lives.  But many 85 year olds are not dying of three other diseases, and really would benefit.  No way is a blanket rule based on the age of the patient even slightly appropriate as a response to the real problem that some 85 year olds receive inappropriately invasive care.  Some 25 year olds receive inappropriately invasive care.  

    The states must be abolished.

    by gtomkins on Mon Sep 16, 2013 at 09:48:38 AM PDT

  •  ONLINE WORKING. (0+ / 0-)

    I make up to $90 an hour working from my home. My story is that I quit working at Walmart to work online and with a little effort I easily bring in around $4Oh to $86h… Someone was good to me by sharing this link with me, so now i am hoping i could help someone else out there by sharing this link... Try it, you won't regret it!...  

     http://xurl.es/...

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