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Lakeshore
An author of no particular popularity

Jay Lake
Date: 2009-08-24 06:29
Subject: [links] Link salad lights out for Omaha
Security: Public
Tags:culture, funny, healthcare, links, personal, politics, publishing, science, tech
Sally Forth on movie remakes and rights releases — Heh.

The Mainzer Rad — Heraldric neepery and history of German microstates.

Quadrilingual Washlet Instructions — Hah! Longtime readers will recall my extensive toilet misadventures in Japan two years ago.

Morning glory clouds over Australia — In case you forgot that the earth is a fundamentally alien place.

Poll: Republicans Think Government Should Stay Out Of MedicareAmong Republicans, 62% say the government should stay out of Medicare, compared to only 24% of Democrats and 31% of independents who agree. How can you have a serious discussion about anything with people whose starting position on the matter is so profoundly counterfactual?

Justice too long delayed is justice deniedThe Edge of the American West on Senator Lieberman comparing healthcare reform to Civil Rights legislation, and defending incrementalism by example. Do you really want to go there, Joe? Civil Rights incrementalism is not exactly a proud history for conservatives, or Americans in general.

?otD: Who put the Mon in the Monday?



8/24/2009
Body movement: n/a (traveling)
This morning's weigh-in: 230.4 (yikes!)
Currently reading: The Real Wizard of Oz by Rebecca Loncraine

Originally published at jlake.com.

Post A Comment | 12 Comments | | Link






Kerry aka Trouble: cat mountain
User: controuble
Date: 2009-08-24 14:39 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Keyword:cat mountain
Getting an authorization failure on the Sally Forth link. :(
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biomekanic
User: biomekanic
Date: 2009-08-24 16:11 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/cgi-bin/comics/archive.pl

That one works, it's the 8/23 entry.
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Kerry aka Trouble: cat mountain
User: controuble
Date: 2009-08-24 19:02 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Keyword:cat mountain
Sorry, but that link gives me a blank page. No error, but no comic, either.
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biomekanic
User: biomekanic
Date: 2009-08-24 20:22 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Weird... I just did a search on the comic and went back through their archives.
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scarlettina: LOL!
User: scarlettina
Date: 2009-08-24 15:44 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Keyword:LOL!
The reminder of your adventures in Japanese plumbing serve as a cautionary tale for me. I've actually been reading everything I can on the subject as I face the week ahead.

The things we do in the name of adventure. :-)
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Jay Lake
User: jaylake
Date: 2009-08-24 17:33 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Travel safe, and have a LOT of fun!
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ericgregory
User: ericgregory
Date: 2009-08-24 15:59 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Loath as I am to defend the anti-health horde...

I'm pretty wary of any poll that asks questions based on false premises, and the range of possible answers there doesn't allow for much nuance. There's no clear way for a respondent to signal that they know Medicare is a government program, or that they know it but believe it should be privatized, or whatever. Moreover, I think folks have a tendency to assume that questions are being asked in good faith, and therefore operate on the assumption that the premise is coherent. Note the unsettlingly high percentages of liberals and moderates answering "yes"...

There's obviously a lot of misunderstanding--much of it willful--out there, but I'm not sure that the poll gives us any new or genuine insight into it.
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bemused_leftist
User: bemused_leftist
Date: 2009-08-24 16:41 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Thanks for good sense. We liberals don't want Medicare cut either. Why increase confusion and alienate people who are basically agreeing with us on this point?

Here, we might say, is a law that 'doesn't know' that Medicare is a federal program.

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/08/21/health/policy/21seniors.html?_r=4&ref=politics
The 1965 law that created Medicare prohibited “any federal interference” in “the practice of medicine or the manner in which medical services are provided,” or in the operation of any institution providing health care.
Sara Rosenbaum, a professor of health law and policy at George Washington University, called this “a majestic message from Congress about how it expected the Medicare program to be run.”
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Jay Lake
User: jaylake
Date: 2009-08-24 17:34 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
I take your point, but if it's a poll effect, then the erroneous Democratic and Republican responses ought to be roughly equivalent. Note the enormous spread between them. And it's not like these numbers are a surprise, given the discourse of the past few weeks.
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ericgregory
User: ericgregory
Date: 2009-08-24 18:18 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Well, I think the differential is just loosely suggestive of people's general attitudes on the subject of Government + Health Care. If you were to ask "Should the government stop paying people to get gay married?" I suspect you'd get similar results, skewing rather high on "yes" across the board but nonetheless tracking somewhat predictably according to party affiliation.
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ericjamesstone
User: ericjamesstone
Date: 2009-08-27 03:47 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
> I take your point, but if it's a poll effect, then the erroneous
> Democratic and Republican responses ought to be roughly equivalent.

Wrong. All the Democrats who don't think Medicare is a government program but that it should be would answer that the government should not stay out of Medicare.

Also, for the poll, the only possible answers were "If yes, press 1. If no, press 2. If you’re not sure, press 3." It's a question of the "Have you stopped beating your wife?" variety. If someone knows Medicare is a government program but believes that Medicare should be privatized or disbanded, what is the proper number to push? 1 obviously comes closest.

I'm not denying that there are Republicans who are factually mistaken about Medicare's status as a government program, nor am I making any claims about the relative percentages of people of different parties who hold incorrect beliefs about it. I'm merely pointing out that this poll is so flawed that no valid conclusions about such numbers can be drawn from it.
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Jay Lake
User: jaylake
Date: 2009-08-27 11:25 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Point taken. Though I will offer the observation that the fact that the question has any legitimacy at all is a very sad comment on the the current state of political discourse. That the conservative commentariat and leadership is doing nothing to clarify the issue, and rather working to further obscure it (see Steele's recent remarks on Medicare, which represent an about face of 40 years of GOP stance) is highly irritating.
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