Monday, September 30, 2013

What about those Democrats who oppose ObamaCare?

(My new American Thinker post)

Senator Reid knows two things: 

1) There are a lot of Democrats running scared because of ObamaCare; and,  

2) Union leaders are not crazy about ObamaCare either.   

Deroy Murdock shared some rather interesting polling data on Sunday:   

"This research echoes growing doubts about Obamacare among leading Democrats and the union bosses who love them.    
"We've got millions of people - working-class, middle-class people - who are going to be pushed into a regulatory health coverage no man's land," Senator Ron Wyden (D., Ore.) warned last Valentine's Day. "They are unable to afford the family coverage through their employer and ineligible for the subsidy that could be used by dependents on the exchange."    
On March 21, 33 Senate Democrats voted for a non-binding resolution against Obamacare's medical-device tax. Illinois's Dick Durbin, Minnesota's Al Franken, and Maryland's Barbara Mikulski were among those who decried this job-killing, innovation-crushing 2.3 percent levy on the gross revenues, rather than profits, of health-implement manufacturers. On June 7, 2012, 37 Democrats and 233 Republicans backed Representative Erik Paulsen's (R., Minn.) bill to kill this cruel, senseless tax.   
Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius conceded that Obamacare could cost people more money, not less. "These folks will be moving into a really fully insured product for the first time," she said March 26, "and so there may be a higher cost associated with getting into that market."   
I believe that the Affordable Care Act is probably the most complex piece of legislation ever passed by the United States Congress," Senator Jay Rockefeller (D., W.Va.) lamented April 9. "Tax reform obviously has been huge, too. But up to this point, it is just beyond comprehension."   
In an April 17 candor attack, Senator Max Baucus (D., Mont.), a key Obamacare engineer, notoriously said, "I just see a huge train wreck coming."   
In an April 29 candidates' debate against her ultimately victorious opponent, Mark Sanford (R., S.C.), Democratic nominee Elizabeth Colbert Busch slammed Obamacare. Said the real-life sister of TV comedian Stephen Colbert: "Obamacare is extremely problematic. It is expensive. It is a $500 billion cost [more] than we originally anticipated. It's cutting into Medicare benefits, and it's having companies lay off their employees because they are worried about the cost of it. That is extremely problematic. It needs an enormous fix."   
WHEC-TV Rochester asked Senator Charles Schumer (D., N.Y.) to explain rising Empire State health premiums. "It's in part because of Obamacare," he conceded May 3.    
Representative John Larson (D., Conn.) complained that congressional staffers would be thrown into the Obamacare health exchanges. "'Listen," he said June 13  inPolitico, "this is simply not fair to these employees."   
Obamacare's Independent Payment Advisory Board "is essentially a health-care rationing body," former Democratic National chairman Howard Dean, M.D., opined in July 29's Wall Street Journal. "The IPAB will cause frustration to providers and patients alike, and it will fail to control costs." The Hill reports that Senator Mark Pryor of Arkansas and Representatives Elizabeth Esty of Connecticut and Ron Barber, Ann Kirkpatrick, and Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona - Democrats all - have co-sponsored legislation to padlock IPAB. At least 22 House Democrats favor its abolition."     

I am convinced that there are many Democrats who would love a second chance to amend ObamaCare.  My guess is that they would love to delay it or put off implementation until after the 2014 election.   

This is why I support forcing Democrats to take public positions on ObamaCare.  It's critical to have Democrats vote "yes or no" about all of those waivers, such as the outrage that Congress and their staff are exempt from the law that they passed.    

You can hear CANTO TALK here.







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A 163rd game for the Rangers

The up and down and now up again season of the Texas Rangers finished dramatically on Sunday.  In fact, the season did not really finish because we will need a "163rd" game to settle one of the wild card spots.

The Rangers had the best record baseball at the end of May.  They went into a terrible slump, then came a great month of August and a terrible September.

Frankly, I thought that the season was over a week ago when they lost a 4-0 game to Kansas City.  I really did.  

Like before, the Rangers showed their resiliency and won 7 in a row. Thankfully, they got some help from Toronto but they still had to win their games to extend the season.

The post season is here and it's great to have the Rangers playing baseball!  

Go Rangers!


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Sunday, September 29, 2013

Why is anyone surprised that Obama looks small on the world stage?

(My new American Thinker post)

A couple of days ago, I was talking to an old Latin American friend. He retired as a college professor and now lives in his native Chile. 

We spoke about President Obama and he made two profound points:

1) President Obama does not come across as a man who likes foreign policy. He reminded my friend of President Carter.  

2) President Obama does not understand the world.  He came into office without an understanding of the role of the US as the sole superpower.

Before you send me an email saying that my friend is another right winger who hates Obama, let me tell you that he is actually a center-left guy.  We would call him a "liberal" in the US.  

I was reminded of my friend's remarks after reading Peggy Noonan's column about President Obama on the world stage:     

"It is a world in a new kind of flux, one that doesn't know what to make of America anymore. In part because of our president.  "We want American leadership," said a member of a diplomatic delegation of a major U.S. ally. He said it softly, as if confiding he missed an old friend."

The key word is "leadership".  

It does not mean that we fix every problem or send troops to every corner of the world. 

It means that we are respected and countries know where we stand.  As my friend said, the US needs to do more than "vote present"!

Yes, the world misses a strong America. 

P.S. You can hear my chat with Bill Katz of Urgent Agenda about President Obama's foreign policy problems.





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More thoughts about the 1960 JFK-Nixon debates



We spoke with Bill Katz of Urgent Agenda about his recollections of the 1960 Kennedy-Nixon debates.  

As you will hear from our chat, Bill actually saw JFK a couple of hours after the debate.

Click here to listen:


Tags: A few thoughts about the Kennedy-Nixon debates  To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the My View by Silvio Canto, Jr. Thanks!

September 28 and the great Ted Williams

Ted Williams is featured twice on this day in history:

1941:


"Batting .399955, Ted Williams elects to play in a doubleheader against the A's on the final day of the season rather than to back into the coveted .400 average because the number is rounded up. 


The 'Splendor Splinter' comes through by going 6-for-8 in the twin bill to finish the season with a .4057 mark (.406)."


1960:


"In his last a major league appearance, an at-bat that will be immortalized by John Updike's Hub fans bid Kid Adieu, Ted Williams homers off Orioles' hurler Jack Fischer. 


The Boston writer's explanation of why the 41-year old superstar did not acknowledge the Fenway faithful's thunderous ovation is because "Gods do not answer letters”. "

He also hit .388 in 1957!  


Was Williams the greatest hitter ever?    He is #1 on my list and I never saw him play.

  


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Saturday, September 28, 2013

Force Senate Democrats to vote on Obamacare waivers

(My new American Thinker post)

Kentucky's Democrat Governor Beshear is out with his party's favorite talking point:   

"The Affordable Care Act was approved by Congress and sanctioned by the Supreme Court. It is the law of the land.   Get over it ... and get out of the way so I can help my people. Here in Kentucky, we cannot afford to waste another day or another life."

Law of the land?  It depends what you mean by that!  

Can we agree that a law should apply equally to all of us?  Sadly, this one does not! 

Where are the liberals complaining that there is a selective application of this law?

The AHCA (ObamaCare) has been modified and amended several times since it was "sanctioned" by Chief Justice Roberts.     Just recently, the law was "amended" again to so that members of Congress and other federal employees would get subsidies for their health care.  

Is that fair?  I don't think so.  At the very least, such a "waiver" should have passed by Congress, the legislative body the last time that I read the US Constitution.

Did the "law of the land" include that when it was presented to The Supreme Court?  No, it was added by executive decree, along with all of the waivers.

My plan is simple:  Force Democrats to vote "yes or no" on these waivers.  Put them on the record by voting.   Senate Democrats have been hiding from ObamaCare for too long.

A few days ago, I saw Eileen Toplansky's article on the pages of American Thinker:     
"It is mindboggling that so many people are totally unaware of ObamaCare, have no interest in discussing it, and are dismissive and rude if someone attempts to have a rational conversation about a law that will drastically change the landscape of this country."

Eileen is right.  We need more debate about this law because the people who voted for it do not understand it.  

P.S. You can hear my chat with Eileen Toplansky here



  



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What if the Affordable Act becomes very NOT affordable?

The AHCA (Obama Care) will take off next Tuesday, or at least the exchanges will be open.

According to some news reports, it will not be very affordable:

"New research from the Manhattan Institute estimates that insurance rates for young men will rise by 99 percent. Rates for younger women will rise between 55 percent to 62 percent, according to the right-leaning New York think tank. "

We spoke with Eileen F Toplansky, contributor to American Thinker.  She just posted a new article about Obama Care:

"As of September 9, 2013, Investor's Business Daily had compiled a list of 258 companies "that have shed work hours, jobs or taken other steps to avoid [the] costs" of [ObamaCare]. This following list dated September 18, 2013 shows "strong proof that ObamaCare's employer mandate is behind [the] cuts to work hours or staffing levels." In only nine days, the list has now increased to include 301 employers. The cuts are staggering when one contemplates the hardships families will incur. These cuts are occurring all across the nation."

It's a mess, big mess. 

Click here for Friday's show:




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ObamaCare: Another union leader screams “que paso?”

(My new Babalu post)

There are two big lines forming in Washington DC these days:

1) "I need a waiver" line, approximately 1,500 the last time they counted; and
2) "I am a union leader and I don't like this law anymore".    
The latest union head to scream "what?" is from Chicago:
"Members of the Chicago-based Service Employees International Union Local 1 have gone on strike over recent job cuts by a janitorial company called Professional Maintenance.
The reason for the cuts? The employer says it is because of the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare. This is ironic since SEIU is a major supporter of the law.
Tyler French, Local 1's organizing director, told Mediatrackers Ohio the company claimed it had to cut its employees' hours due to Obamacare mandates."
According to news reports, union leaders have suddenly realized that ObamaCare means that they will lose their plans. After all, isn't "health benefits" one of the big reasons to join a union?
I have a couple of questions for Mr French and all of the other union leaders who've suddenly discovered that ObamaCare stinks:
1) Where were you in 2009 when this law was rushed through Congress?
2) How can you look at your members and defend your support for President Obama, or the man who gave you this law?
I don't expect union leaders to answer my questions. However, I am hoping that union members do a little "regime change" and get some leaders who read the laws that they support.
Where did the money come from for the unions to reelect President Obama and his ObamaCare? It came from "the dues" that union members pay every month.
Who was looking out for the union members? It wasn't the leaders who supported ObamaCare!
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Friday, September 27, 2013

1960 this week: The Kennedy-Nixon debates

(My new American Thinker post)

This is a post from 2013.

Millions of Americans tuned in for a real "TV first" 53 years ago this week.   They watched a debate by the two major presidential candidates running for president in 1960. 

Who won?  Did the debates impact the vote?

Senator Kennedy won by 114,000 votes out of 70 million cast that day.  It was 49.72% vs 49.55%.  

The conventional wisdom is that JFK won "the video" and Nixon won "the audio"

I've watched these debates and give both guys good grades on their answers.  It's true that Nixon was ill in the first debate and it showed. However, he still gave good answers.  Nixon did not look as telegenic as JFK but his answers were very cogent.

I also thought that the reporters were very serious, a statement about the media before style took over substance.

W. J. Campbell just wrote on 'Media Myth Alert" that the narrative is dead wrong about those debates:  

"The myth holds that people who watched the debate on television thought that Senator John F. Kennedy won; those who listened on radio thought Vice President Richard Nixon had the best of it.   The myth was long ago debunked by scholars David L. Vancil and Sue D. Pendell, in an article in Central States Speech Journal. They noted that reports of viewer-listener disagreement typically were anecdotal, and the few surveys that hinted at a viewer-listener disconnect were too small and unrepresentative by which to make confident judgments."

Again, your guess is as good as mine.  It's like losing the pennant by one game and arguing about what "one game" made the difference.

What impact did it have?   

President Kennedy was reminded of all of his "tough talk" about Cuba when he fumbled The Bay of Pigs in the first few months of 1961.   JFK hit the Eisenhower administration very hard about the growing communist menace in Cuba.  His debate comments actually had an impact on many Cubans, like my father, who were following the debates by shortwave radio.

What else?

We did not have another televised debate until 1976 when Governor Carter challenged President Ford.  You may remember that President Ford issued a "debate challenge" during his convention speech.  Governor Carter accepted even though he had a huge lead at the time.

What do we remember from presidential debates? It amazes me how little the actual presidency has to do with the issues debated. Vietnam was not an issue in the Kennedy-Nixon debates but it would become the issue of the 1960's.

Civil rights was discussed but nothing really happened until President Johnson used his legislative skills to pass important laws. None of that was really mentioned in those 1960 debates.

I guess that debates are important and we should continue the tradition.  However, the reality of the presidency often overwhelms campaign promises or 'tough talk" at the debates.  

Wonder if anyone remembers that Obama was going to close GITMO and never use military force unilaterally? 

You can hear our comments about the debates here: 


.



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Today's political battles with Leslie Eastman & we recall The Battle of Salamis with Barry Jacobsen

THURSDAY:  Leslie Eastman reviews the cultural battles on the frontlines of college campuses and California, and Barry Jacobsen reviews the famous Battle of Salamis between the Greeks and the Persians.

Listen in now at 
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Tags: Political potpourri  To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the My View by Silvio Canto, Jr. Thanks!

Cuba and the 1960 Kennedy-Nixon debates

(My new Babalu post)

We celebrate another anniversary of the Kennedy-Nixon debates.  The first of the debates was on this day in 1960.  It was the first time that two presidential candidates had debated on TV, the new medium.
Kennedy won the 1960 election by 114,000 votes out of more than 70 million.  It was close, very close!   

According to news reports, Nixon won the audio and Kennedy won the video:
 "According to the Museum of Broadcast History, radio listeners considered Nixon's answers to questions to be more substantive and gave Nixon the advantage over Kennedy after the first debate. By contrast, television viewers gave Kennedy the edge, as their impressions were based on how the candidate looked as much as what he said."
We did not have another debate until 1976, when Governor Carter challenged President Ford.  

In the second debate (October 7, 1960), Cuba became a very hot topic:
 "The reporters are: Paul Niven of CBS, Edward P. Morgan of ABC, Alvin Spivak of United Press International, and Harold R. Levy of Newsday. Now the first question is from Mr. Niven and is for Vice President Nixon.
MR. NIVEN: Mr. Vice President, Senator Kennedy said last night that the Administration must take responsibility for the loss of Cuba. Would you compare the validity of that statement with the validity of your own statements in previous campaigns that the Truman Administration was responsible for the loss of China to the Communists?
MR. NIXON: Well first of all, I don't agree with Senator Kennedy that Cuba is lost and certainly China was lost when this Administration came into power in 1953. As I look at Cuba today, I believe that we are following the right course, a course which is difficult but a course which under the circumstance is the only proper one which will see that the Cuban people get a chance to realize their aspirations of progress through freedom and that they get that with our cooperation with the other organi- of the states in the Organization of American States. Now Senator Kennedy has made some very strong criticisms of my part - or alleged part - in what has happened in Cuba. He points to the fact that I visited Cuba while Mr. Batista was in power there. I can only point out that if we are going to judge the Administrations in terms of our attitude toward dictators, we're glad to have a comparison with the previous administration. There were eleven dictators in South America and in Central America when we came in, in 1953. Today there are only three left including the one in Cuba. We think that's pretty good progress. Senator Kennedy also indicated with regard to Cuba that he thought that I had made a mistake when I was in Cuba in not calling for free elections in that country. Now I'm very surprised that Senator Kennedy, who is on the Foreign Relations Committee, would have made such a statement as this kind. As a matter of fact in his book, The Strategy for Peace, he took the right position. And that position is that the United States has a treaty - a treaty with all of the Organization of American States - which prohibits us from interfering in the internal affairs of any other state and prohibits them as well. For me to have made such a statement would been in direct uh - opposition to that treaty. Now with regard to Cuba, let me make one thing clear. There isn't any question but that we will defend our rights there. There isn't any question but that we will defend Guantanamo if it's attacked. There also isn't any question but that the free people of Cuba - the people who want to be free - are going to be supported and that they will attain their freedom. No, Cuba is not lost, and I don't think this kind of defeatist talk by Senator Kennedy helps the situation one bit.
MR. McGEE: Senator Kennedy, would you care to comment?
MR. KENNEDY: In the first place I've never suggested that Cuba was lost except for the present. In my speech last night I indicated that I thought that Cuba one day again would be free. Where I've been critical of the Administration's policy, and where I criticized Mr. Nixon, was because in his press conference in Havana in 1955, he praised the competence and stability of the bicta- bict- Batista dictatorship - that dictatorship had killed over twenty thousand Cubans in seven years. Secondly, I did not criticize him for not calling for free elections. What I criticized was the failure of the Administration to use its great influence to persuade the Cuban government to hold free elections, particularly in 1957 and 1958. Thirdly, Arthur Gardner, a Republican Ambassador, Earl Smith, a Republican Ambassador, in succession - both have indicated in the past six weeks that they reported to Washington that Castro was a Marxist, that Raul Castro was a Communist, and that they got no effective results. Instead our aid continued to Batista, which was ineffective; we never were on the side of freedom; we never used our influence when we could have used it most effectively - and today Cuba is lost for freedom. I hope some day it will rise; but I don't think it will rise if we continue the same policies toward Cuba that we did in recent years, and in fact towards all of Latin America - when we've almost ignored the needs of Latin America; we've beamed not a single Voice of America program in Spanish to all of Latin America in the last eight years, except for the three months of the Hungarian uh - revolution." 
My father, like many other Cubans,  followed this debate with incredible interest.   It was clear by the fall of 1960 that Castro was not going to hold elections or follow up all of those promises about "pluralism":



Doctor" Castro?  Did he say "Adam and Eve"?
Cubans in the island, and those preparing outside for the liberation of Cuba, must have been very impressed by the comments that they heard in this debate.  It's obvious that both candidates in 1960 communicated their concern for the communist dictatorship forming in the island.
Sadly, it all fell apart 6 months later at The Bay of Pigs!

P.S. For a little history, click here for the Bay of Pigs' 50th anniversary show with our dear friend Humberto Fontova.


Tags: 1960 debates and Cuba  To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the My View by Silvio Canto, Jr. Thanks!

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Clear media bias: Wendy Davis and Ted Cruz

(My new American Thinker post)

We all remember how the media reacted to Texas State Senator Wendy Davis' filibuster in Texas.   

Our friends at POLITICO remember the "media bias" too:   

"When a Democrat like Texas state Sen. Wendy Davis filibusters against abortion restrictions, she is elevated to hero status, her tennis shoes become totems.  When Cruz grandstands against Obamacare, he is a laughingstock in the eyes of many journalists on Twitter, an "embarrassment" in the eyes of The New York Times editorial board."


There is another point here.  

Abortion in the 20th week was opposed by most Texans.  Nevertheless, Senator Davis was presented as a principled woman who stood up to the big boys in Austin.  Senator Davis was allowed by a very friendly media to turn the narrative from "late term abortion" to "choice." No one in the media challenged Senator Davis' false narrative. No woman in Texas was denied her "right" to an abortion.

ObamaCare is extremely unpopular.  In fact, did you see any Democrat running in a competitive election stand up for ObamaCare during the Cruz speech?  ObamaCare has been amended and changed without a congressional vote.  Why?  Because Senator Reid will lose Democrats if there is a vote in the Senate.

Cruz stands up to oppose an unpopular law and he is a "wacko bird".

Davis supports an unpopular procedure and she is treated like a modern Joan of Arc.

Media bias?  Do you need any further evidence?

You can hear CANTO TALK here.



Tags:  Media bias:  Cruz vs Davis  To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the My View by Silvio Canto, Jr. Thanks!

Iran is not going to shake our hand because we want to shake theirs

(My new American Thinker post)

We got another taste yesterday that the world may love Obama but it does not respect him.  I don't know about you but I want our presidents respected rather than loved.  It's a safer world when they respect rather than love our president.

President Obama went to the UN assembly meeting hoping to make history by shaking hands with the Iranian moderate.  He left town without a handshake and his speech was "all mush," specially the line about the world being more stable than it was 5 years ago.

The humiliation was complete when "the Iranian moderate" refused to shake President Obama's hand:  

"For days before the U.N. conclave, White House aides had broadcast the President's desire to shake Mr. Rouhani's hand. By Monday, the press was overflowing with leaked accounts of where and how it would happen. Having thus turned down the lights and turned up the mood music, it made the snub that followed especially potent. What the Administration is trying to spin as a function of complex Iranian politics was, in blunt fact, an expression of lordly contempt for what Iranian leaders consider to be an overeager suitor from an unworthy nation."  (WSJ)

Another bad day for those who thought that Obama would change the world with a speech and a smile. 

We learned again that Iran does not like us, whether our president is a Texas Cowboy or "a self proclaimed enlightened liberal" who promised to meet unconditionally with our enemies when he was a candidate.

Again, they don't like us and have no serious desire to change their nuclear plans. Another waste of time at the UN!
You can hear CANTO TALK here





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My new Babalu post: “Obama que malo baila Usted”

(My new Babalu post)

Beny More would agree with me.  He'd be joining me today singing  "Obama que malo baila Usted".  What a pathetic performance by President Obama at the UN.
President Obama headed to the UN this week desperately hoping to make history.  He was determined to make something happen by shaking the hand of the new Iranian "moderate", or the new kid in town who recently posted an Op-Ed over at The Washington Post.  He left town without a handshake and his speech was "all mush", specially the line about the world being more stable than it was 5 years ago.
The humiliation was total and complete.  It  ended when "the Iranian moderate" refused to shake President Obama's hand.  Here is an account of the week's events:
"For days before the U.N. conclave, White House aides had broadcast the President's desire to shake Mr. Rouhani's hand. By Monday, the press was overflowing with leaked accounts of where and how it would happen. Having thus turned down the lights and turned up the mood music, it made the snub that followed especially potent. What the Administration is trying to spin as a function of complex Iranian politics was, in blunt fact, an expression of lordly contempt for what Iranian leaders consider to be an overeager suitor from an unworthy nation." (WSJ)

Another bad day for the "si se puede" gang who bought into the idea that Obama would change the world with a speech and a smile.
We learned again that Iran does not like us.  They don't our like our leaders, whether our president is a Texas Cowboy or "a self proclaimed enlightened liberal" who promised to meet unconditionally with our enemies when he was a candidate.
Again, they don't like us and have no serious plan to change their nuclear plans.  They are just buying time, as the leader of Israel warned us.
Another waste of time at the UN and don't forget that we pay 22% of the dues.
We repeat:  They are not going to shake our hand because we want to shake theirs!   My guess is that they are laughing in Cuba, Venezuela and North Korea.
What's next?  When will Raul Castro proclaim himself  "a moderate", write an Op-Ed and get the story going about shaking hands with President Obama?
You can hear CANTO TALK here.

Tags:  Obama, and Iran at the UN  To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the My View by Silvio Canto, Jr. Thanks!

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

ObamaCare is like that song: 'Every day I have to cry some'

(My new American Thinker post)

Pick your version (I like the Steve Alaimo original) but the chorus is the same: 

"Everyday I have to cry some  Everyday I have to cry some   Dry the water from my eyes some Everyday I have to cry.." 

Everyday, we learn something new about Obama Care and "everyday you want to cry some".
 
POLITICO adds another article to the growing list of daily surprises about the law that no one read.   I'm convinced that most Senate Democrats voted for this law hoping that The Supreme Court would kill it.  How do you explain responsible legislators voting for this law?
 
By the way, don't you love the article's title?  Obamacare: One blow after another

"The Obamacare that consumers will finally be able to sign up for next week is a long way from the health plan President Barack Obama first pitched to the nation.   Millions of low-income Americans won't receive coverage. Many workers at small businesses won't get a choice of insurance plans right away. Large employers won't need to provide insurance for another year.  Far more states than expected won't run their own insurance marketplaces. And a growing number of workers won't get to keep their employer-provided coverage."  

Can we agree that this is a mess?   Yes it is a mess.   Worse than that, it is going to wreck the world's best health care system.
 
This is why I love what Senator Cruz is doing.  He won't get it defunded but we are having a conversation about this horrible law.     

You can hear CANTO TALK here.



Tags: ObamaCare  To share or post to your site, click on "Post Link". Please mention / link to the My View by Silvio Canto, Jr. Thanks!

Dilma gains a few points back home by beating up Obama at the UN today

(My new American Thinker post)

President Dilma Rousseff of Brazil unleashed on President Obama today.  It was rather entertaining to say the least. 

My guess is that most analysts will say that this is a reaction to the NSA stories. Yes it is but I think that this is another sign that Latin American leaders are sick and tired of the indifference shown by this administration.

Can you recall a US president so uninterested in US-Latin America issues?  I can't.

Here is a bit of President Rousseff's speech:  

"Tampering in such a manner in the lives and affairs of other countries is a breach of international law and, as such, it is an affront to the principles that should otherwise govern relations among countries, especially among friendly nations," Rousseff told the annual gathering of world leaders at the United Nations.   She also proposed an international framework for governing the internet and said Brazil would adopt legislation and technology to protect it from illegal interception of communications.   "Information and telecommunication technologies cannot be the new battlefield between states. Time is ripe to create the conditions to prevent cyberspace from being used as a weapon of war, through espionage, sabotage, and attacks against systems and infrastructure of other countries," Rousseff said."

In all fairness, Dilma Rousseff is doing a little "samba" for her Brazilian audience. She is also a bit hypocritical because there is a lot of spying going on in Brazil and other Latin American countries.

In other words, don't cry for Dilma's privacy anytime soon!

I believe that this UN speech was rooted on two issues:

First, there is a lot of discontent down in Brazil about the spending related to the World Cup and Olympics.  We saw riots and huge demonstrations after bus fares were raised.  This speech, or the attack on President Obama, is a bit of a distraction for the Brazilian president.

Second, there is concern in that President Obama only thinks of Latin America when he is pandering for votes in our immigration reform debates.

How do you say "I'm angry" in Portuguese?  I don't know for sure but Dilma  just sent President Obama a warning that Latin America wants more attention.

You can hear CANTO TALK here.


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Happy # 83 to Ian Tyson



We say happy # 83 to Ian Tyson of Ian & Sylvia, the wonderful Canadian folk duo. 

Ian Tyson wrote, and along with his wife Sylvia, recorded some great songs.  One of his songs was "Someday soon' recorded by Judy Collins.

This is from Ian's official website:


"Ian Tyson’s story is familiar to most.  He learned guitar in hospital, recovering from a bad fall in a rodeo, he upped stakes from Vancouver Island and hitchhiked to Toronto, where he met a young singer from small-town Ontario called Sylvia Fricker. As Ian & Sylvia, they were the Canadian stars of the early ’60s folk boom that gave the world Bob Dylan, Phil Ochs, Joan Baez, the Clancy Brothers and the Kingston Trio.Married in 1964, the pair made almost a dozen albums — and wrote some of Canada’s best-loved songs, including Ian’s “Four Strong Winds” and “Someday Soon,” and Sylvia’s “You Were on My Mind — songs that have all been covered countless times by some of the most famous artists of our time, including Dylan, Neil Young, Judy Collins, and a young Canadian singer the couple mentored in his early days, Gordon Lightfoot.During the British Invasion, Ian and Sylvia evolved into pioneers of country-rock. Their band, Great Speckled Bird, rivaled the Byrds and other groups which helped create modern country, a decade before the Urban Cowboy phase of contemporary “new traditionalists”.After hosting a national Canadian television music show from 1970 to 1975, Tyson realized his dream of returning to the Canadian West. The music and marriage of Ian and Sylvia had ended and it was now or never. Disillusioned with the Canadian country music scene, Tyson decided the time had come to return to his first love – training horses in the ranch country of southern Alberta.After three idyllic years cowboying in the Rockies at Pincher Creek, Tyson recorded the album Old Corrals & Sagebrush, consisting of cowboy songs, both traditional and new. “It was a kind of a musical Christmas card for my friends” he recalls. “We weren’t looking for a ‘hit’ or radio play or anything like that.” Unbeknownst to Tyson and his friends, the cowboy renaissance was about to find expression at the inaugural Elko Cowboy Poetry Gathering in 1983; a small coterie of saddle makers, rawhide braiders, cowboy poets and pickers discovered one another in a small cow town in northern Nevada. Tyson was invited to perform his “new western music”— and he’s missed only one or two gatherings in the 30 years since.He has continued to be honoured for his achievements. After numerous Canadian Country Music Awards, membership in the Juno Awards Hall of Fame — one of five such honours with various industry organizations — he has three honorary Doctorates, and is proudly a member of the Order of Canada.  “Four Strong Winds,” in 2006, was chosen Canada’s #1 song of the 20th century by CBC listeners,"
Click here for "Four strong winds":




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