Postlet #7: Why Am I So Pissed Off?

Because all I wanted to do today was write about the Pee-Pee Patrol.

Sure, I’m oversimplifying a little.

Just trust me, though, if you spent your goddam day doing what I spent my goddam day doing, you’d be pissed off too.  More than the poor French bastard who got to test-drive the new anti-pee wall.

See, it’s not enough to work hard, or to be skillful, or to achieve a deep understanding of a subject, or to do goddam handstands.  I don’t really know what does matter, to tell you the truth.  If I did, I wouldn’t be so pissed off right now.

All I know is, nobody ever busted a blood vessel investigating the Pee-Pee Patrol.

Postlet #6: Fact-Checking Huckabee and Politifact

Dumbass Mike Huckabee, a guy I used to like, defended his idiotic reading of some of the President’s remarks, and their relationship to just-buried Ted Kennedy.

When diagnosed with terminal brain cancer at age 77, Senator Kennedy didn’t do as President Obama suggested and take a pain pill and ride it home.

Politifact, the RC Cola of fact-checking, tries to set the record straight about the pain pill remarks:

Looking at the full transcript, it’s clear that Obama voluntarily brought up the example of having to choose between a surgery and a pill. But he did so as a hypothetical example of difficult decisions about medical treatment for older patients. He was not advocating, much less requiring, bureaucrats to make a potentially life-ending decision for a centenarian.

“I don’t want bureaucracies making those decisions,” Obama said.

Sure, that’s one way to read the President’s remarks.  But I read it more as a weighing of the medical risk of a surgery on someone of that age, versus a possibly limited reward in extension of life.  Risk dying in surgery to get another 2 years, versus a risk-free year on that pill, you know, a medical decision.  Either way, the President was pretty clear.

“I don’t want bureaucracies making those decisions.”

Sit down and shut up, Huckabee.

Postlet #5: Something Besides Public Option Declared Dead

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Every few weeks, it seems, the media is reporting the death of the public health insurance option, so I was happy to see them move on to a new target, the Gang of Six and the idea of a bipartisan reform bill.  What’s really cute is watching seasoned pros buy into the idea that the White House, in a Popeye-esque brogue, is going “That’s alls I can stands, I can’t stands no more!”

The public option was never not going to be allowed to pass.  The fact that the Republicans are giving the White House cover now is just an awesome bonus.

Postlet #4: Longer Lives are Less Than Worthless

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Damn, do I ever get tired of double-talk on health care.  First, Section 1233 was, if not the gateway to Death Panels, then it was a cold, worrisome treatment of mortality vs. cost.  Now, when it comes to the idea of extending life through preventive medicine, that’s a bad idea because longer lives cost money:

As it turns out, there may be very little savings at all from preventive care:

Using data from long-standing clinical trials, researchers projected the cost of caring for people with Type 2 diabetes as they progress from diagnosis to various complications and death. Enrolling federally-insured patients in a simple but aggressive program to control the disease would cost the government $1,024 per person per year — money that largely would be recovered after 25 years through lower spending on dialysis, kidney transplants, amputations and other forms of treatment, the study found.

However, except for the youngest diabetics, the additional services

This is all pushback against a study that says CBO isn’t factoring in savings from preventive care.  But even if you accept the idea that longer lives mean more health care, does that mean that those longer lives will necessarily be unproductive?  And even if you accept that, isn’t rejecting preventive care something akin to a Death Panel?  In other words, won’t these people just say any fucking thing at this point?  And won’t the media, except for Jake Tapper and me, just “he said/she said” the whole deal?

Postlet #3: Tapper Doesn’t Takes Exception, I DO

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Update:  Jake doesn’t take exception.  I do.  I think the President should literally say “Let me be absolutely clear: The media, with the exception of Jake Tapper and Tommy Christopher, have done a lousy job of blah blah blah…”

Jake Tapper posts today about the President and his political arm, Organizing for America, taking shots at the media for not smacking down health care lies, with this pointed addendum:

For the record, HERE’s the first report we did on the erroneous claims about death panels.

I know how you feel, Jake, but in fairness to the President, not every member of the media is as awesome as me:

In the past few days, the Washington Post’s Charles Lane, then Eugene Robinson, and now The Daily Beast’s Lee Siegel have all given Palin’s death panels the “she’s crazy, but there’s a germ of a point here” treatment.

This cowardice in the face of clarity allows these lies to muddy the waters even as they are uprooted.

Postlet #2: Eliot Spitzer Gets a Freebie From NY Post plus Morning Joew

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I got hosed out of 2 Mediaite stories this morning by quicker colleagues, but cannot stand to suffer from writeus interruptus, so I’ll splooge my 2 cents worth here.

First, Joe Scarborough compared conservatives to the Jews in the Warsaw Ghetto on Morning Joe today, and my Chief-a-roony Rachel Sklar had a post up before I could say “What the fuck?”  Let me just say that this is a ridiculous extension of the right’s losing “victim” strategy.  You know, the one where any response to their batshit crazy “dissent” is akin to “1984,” or “Waterworld,” or whatever futuristic cautionary tale strikes the fancy?  “It’s made from TEA BAGS!  Soylent Green is TEA BAGS!!!”

Then, there’s the NY Post’s joke of a story about Eliot Spritzer mulling a run for Comptroller, or Senator, or Mongering Czar, or whatever.  The piece was completely fact-free, and had all the attribution of a man-on-the-street gaggle at a Starbucks.  So, what’s the deal?

Well, Spitzer gets a free trial balloon out of the deal, and Ashley Dupre gets to cry alone in the shower.

Postlet #1: Really? The PhRMA Deal Sucks?

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Tonight, I introduce the postlet.  The name might indicate a short blog post, but what it really is is a post that’s short on links and polish, and long on me mouthing off because I am constantly having my time wasted, so I’m really annoyed.  I’m also including a random picture, because I like my posts to have a picture, but I don’t feel like thinking of one that goes with this post.

I’m not going to tell you who has been wasting my time today, because I want you to have the fun that comes with those “blind gossip” items, like, “Who’s the blonde starlet recently seen playing nude backgammon with that married entertainment lawyer?” or “What committee has press people who don’t, y’know, interact with the press?”

On a completely unrelated note, someone in the press is finally noticing how awful the $80 billion PhRMA deal is.  Except not really.  This Fortune article misses everything I pointed out in June, but does point out new awfulness that’s based on details that hadn’t emerged when I wrote mine.  So, add this + this.  Well, I guess now we know all we need to know about that story.