in my neverending and damn near futile mission to try to help inform folks…

THIS GUY? He explains the shutdown so clearly that a Kindergartener could understand it.

This is what Josh Wimmer posted on Facebook yesterday. I see he and I suffer from the same problem of beating our heads against the wall in order to try to help people understand what’s really going on and not what they want to believe is going on. OMG I HATE RHETORIC SO FREAKING MUCH.

Summary for anyone who is interested and who wants to more fully understand what is happening with our federal government right now:

1. This shutdown is not happening because both parties won’t compromise. This shutdown is happening because Republicans in the House of Representatives have refused to pass a b̶u̶d̶g̶e̶t̶ ̶b̶i̶l̶l̶ continuing resolution to provide funding for federal programs without a bunch of amendments tacked on to it, chiefly amendments nullifying Obamacare.

2. Obamacare is not directly tied to this b̶u̶d̶g̶e̶t̶ ̶b̶i̶l̶l̶ continuing resolution in any way. It is a separate piece of legislation, already passed and signed into law back in 2010. The House Republicans are just saying, “We don’t like this law, Obamacare, that was already passed, and because we do not have the votes to repeal it in the manner laid out in the Constitution” — they don’t; they’ve already tried to repeal it 42 times, yes, that is true, 42 times — “we’re going to instead DEMAND that the law be repealed or delayed, or else we won’t pass t̶h̶i̶s̶ ̶b̶u̶d̶g̶e̶t̶ ̶l̶e̶g̶i̶s̶l̶a̶t̶i̶o̶n̶ a ‘clean’ continuing resolution, without any of the stuff about Obamacare, necessary to keep the country running.”

3. Again, Obamacare was signed into law, in the fashion laid out in the Constitution of the United States, in 2010. It was not, like, laid down by martial law, unless you think a bunch of congresspeople and senators voting for a bill counts as martial law.

4. Also, the president behind Obamacare was reelected in 2012. Also also, in 2012 the Democrats retained control of the Senate, and House Republicans actually lost the popular vote, but stayed in control of their chamber because of shrewd gerrymandering. All of which is to say: If Americans hate Obamacare so much, how come they reelected Obama and voted so strongly for Democrats.

5. Remember that in 2012, the Supreme Court, led by a conservative chief justice and majority, upheld Obamacare’s constitutionality, except for one part. (And that part is kaput. The president is not trying to enforce it with UN troops and black helicopters. It’s why we don’t have a state-run health exchange here in Wisconsin.) So, to sum up: Obamacare was not only enacted according to the rule of law in this country, it also survived scrutiny by the highest judiciary body in the land, which is in the hands of the opposition party.

6. The point being: None of this is to say whether Obamacare will be good or bad for the country! It is only to say that it was passed according to the rules, and it’s been legitimized by our top court and implicitly by citizens who voted to reelect the president whose name it bears. Socialist tyranny, it’s just not.

7. What the House GOP is pulling right now — “Get rid of Obamacare or we’ll shut down important services and risk a global financial catastrophe by not raising the debt ceiling” — this is not politics as usual. This is extortion. They are a minority; even plenty of other Republican legislators think that what these guys are doing is absurd and dangerous (and this will likely become more clear the longer the shutdown goes on). If these guys want to get rid of Obamacare, they should go out and campaign and get more senators and a president elected. That is how democracy works. AMERICA, Y’ALL.

8. A note on the debt ceiling: Voting to raise the debt ceiling is not voting to spend money that the U.S. doesn’t have. Congress *already voted* to spend that money. The debt ceiling is a bizarre, redundant device, and we are basically the only country that has one. (Denmark has one, but it’s just a formality and has never been a point of controversy or contention.) Essentially, it’s like if your dad went out and bought a lot of stuff with his credit card, but then he had to ask your mom if it was OK for him to pay the credit card off. The money is already spent. If your mom says no, then your dad is failing to honor his obligations, and his credit rating (and your mom’s!) is going to be trashed. The difference on the larger scale is that if the U.S.’s credit rating is trashed, the whole planet’s economy could take a massive hit, because we are, you know, a global super-power.

9. Again, this is not about a lack of compromise on both sides. The House GOP is demanding that the president and congressional Democrats just undo their chief legislative victory. And it was a legitimate victory! And frankly, Obamacare is something that a lot of Americans *want*. Those Americans are real citizens, too. So this is like if your dad and your mom and you and your sister all vote to go to Olive Garden one Thursday evening, but your little brother wants to go to Applebee’s, and so instead of just accepting that he won’t always get his way and planning a stronger case for Applebee’s for next Thursday, he flips out and runs outside and slashes all the tires on the car so you guys can’t go anywhere. Except, again, much crazier, because instead of just one family it affects millions of people and could also set off an economic calamity of titanic proportions.

10. Let me be clear: I do not hate Republicans. My dad is a Republican! I am a small businessperson! I go to church! I LOVE CHRISTMAS. This is not about name-calling or hating on anyone, and frankly, I do not expect to change anyone’s mind about any of the proceeding details. But I am tired of the notion that both parties are equally to blame for our troubles; it has surely been true in the past, but it’s not right now. (And it is entirely possible for ALL POLITICIANS TO BE AWFUL and for ONE OF THE TWO PARTIES TO STILL BE CONSIDERABLY WORSE.) Believe me, I would love nothing more than to see a revitalized Republican party, with views that I might disagree with but which were not straight-up lunacy. IT WOULD MAKE MY DUMB INTERNET FIGHTS A LOT MORE INTERESTING.

I can’t believe I’m posting this. I am a fool. I don’t know if I will even respond to comments. I have a headache already. Maybe it would not be so bad if we all downloaded our consciousnesses into computers after all.

[We covered this in the comments here yesterday, but a lot of people don’t read the comments. And I’ve seen retorts about Congress’s “exemption” from Obamacare come up frequently in some of the responses to this post, so here’s a link explaining the truth behind that lie. The short version is: No, Congress is not exempt from Obamacare. And what John Boehner and other Republicans are claiming is an “exemption” is actually the result of *an amendment that the GOP themselves suggested, and that Boehner and his people voted for* back in 2009. See link below and another in the comments. —jw 10/2.]

[Updated to correct the post: It’s not a budget bill that is tripping things up in the House; it’s a continuing resolution. My apologies for the error! I’m learning as I go here, people. —jw 10/2, 11:56pm]

You know, I know that people really don’t want to be armed with facts. People are afraid of the truth, especially when it goes against everything they were taught growing up. You’re not born conservative or liberal, you become that way. And I have no issues with leanings left, center or right. I do take issue with people who believe what they want because it makes them more comfortable with their ideals, instead of educating themselves with FACTS and then saying “fuck it. I know those are the facts, I still chose to be ignorant.” Fine. Be ignorant. But do the rest of the world a favor and stop passing on the rhetoric and ignorance blindly and hoping that people will latch onto it as truth.

Like this stupid piece of Obamacare Trolling that is going around. It is a flat out lie. You know how I know? Well, because I fact checked it. Also, the ONLY websites that are printing this as truth? Right wing, ultra-conservative, tea-bagging websites. RHETORIC. PROPAGANDA. Welcome to North Korea, folks.

Here’s your daily dose of stupid, copied straight from a Facebook friend’s status. That friend is now hidden because I cannot read is moronic posts anymore. He has the right to post them. I have the right to hide him before my brain explodes.

“I actually made it through this morning at 8:00 A.M. I have a preexisting condition (Type 1 Diabetes) and my income base was 45K-55K annually I chose tier 2 “Silver Plan” and my monthly premiums came out to $597.00 with $13,988 yearly deductible!!! There is NO POSSIBLE way that I can afford this so I “opt-out” and chose to continue along with no insurance. I received an email tonight at 5:00 P.M. informing me that my fine would be $4,037 and could be attached to my yearly income tax return. Then you make it to the “REPERCUSSIONS PORTION” for “non-payment” of yearly fine. First, your drivers license will be suspended until paid, and if you go 24 consecutive months with “Non-Payment” and you happen to be a home owner, you will have a federal tax lien placed on your home. You can agree to give your bank information so that they can easy “Automatically withdraw” your “penalties” weekly, bi-weekly or monthly! This by no means is “Free” or even “Affordable.”

Got a notice today from our health insurance co… premiums are going up. No surprise there. We were told it would happen and it did. Now the gov will be in charge of what care we get even though we pay for our own insurance… commonly called a ‘death panel’. Population control has now been instituted by Obamacare, unless it is defunded. WAKE UP PEOPLE!!! Better to shut the gov down than the gov shut your life down!!! This is NOT a conspiracy theory… it is a fact! Do the research yourself. It’s all there in black and white. I’m wasting my breath here, but will pray for this country and it’s citizens… including those who support Obama for they have been deceived . DENNIS

You know how I knew this was false? From CONSUMER REPORTS:   Penalty. If you don’t have health insurance, you’ll have to pay a tax penalty, starting at $95 per individual, $285 per family, or 1 percent of income, whichever is greater, for 2014. (That rises to $695 per individual, $2,085 per family, or 2.5 percent of income in 2016.)

C’mon people. Please use the brain that your God gave you!

Second thing that is a tip off? The driver’s license suspension and automatic withdrawal of penalties. HORSE SHIT. The ONLY websites who are spouting this rhetoric as truth are the damn tea-baggers. Again.

So again, from Consumer Reports: Because the vast majority of people will already have qualifying health insurance, few will confront the choice of buying a plan or paying a penalty. Moreover, you won’t have to pay it if you make too little money to file a federal tax return or would have to spend more than 8 percent of your household income on the cheapest qualifying plan, even including subsidies. Americans living abroad, and those in prisons, are exempt from the mandate and associated fines.

Here’s the information on what your salary and family size needs to be to qualify for a lower premium:

Savings depends on income and family size

The amount you save depends on your family size and how much money your family earns. In general, if your income falls within the following ranges you’ll qualify to save money on your premiums in 2014. The lower your income within these ranges, the more you’ll save. (The amounts below are based on 2013 numbers and are likely to be slightly higher in 2014.)

  • $11,490 to $45,960 for individuals
  • $15,510 to $62,040 for a family of 2
  • $19,530 to $78,120 for a family of 3
  • $23,550 to $94,200 for a family of 4
  • $27,570 to $110,280 for a family of 5
  • $31,590 to $126,360 for a family of 6
  • $35,610 to $142,440 for a family of 7
  • $39,630 to $158,520 for a family of 8

If your income falls below the amounts shown, you may qualify for coverage under your state’s Medicaid program. But if your state is not expanding Medicaid in 2014–and you don’t qualify for Medicaid under your state’s rules–you can’t get lower costs on Marketplace coverage based on your income. You’d have to pay the entire cost of a Marketplace insurance plan.

Ugh. Do me a favor, just run the numbers yourself.

Also, don’t forget to sign the petition and spread the word. If the government is shut down, then the government officials shouldn’t get paid until they fix this mess. I know I’m being ideological here, but trying to do something about it makes me feel better.

9 thoughts on “in my neverending and damn near futile mission to try to help inform folks…

  1. Sadly, Mel, nobody who wants to be mad about this and be mad at the President NOT those congressmen that are laying in the floor kicking and screaming are going to listen or care about this. They DO NOT want to know the actual nonpartisan facts about whats going on. They hate Obama (most of them because he is black but they SAY its for other reasons. Ive paid attention. Most of the people I know who hate Obama with undying passion, dont really know shit about him, his policies, or politics at all………..but those people are racist in their every day lives. Im confident thats not coincidence) Anyway….. I would really like to kiss this Josh person right in the mouth (maybe slip him a little tongue) for FINALLY saying what I want to say except he was far nicer and didnt call anyone a stupid uninformed asshole who has been drinking the Fox News Kool-Aid (which I totally would have) I had someone tell me yesterday that Americans didnt want ACA. Ummmm you cant speak for the country. In fact the country has spoken………Obama’s campaign kinda hinged on this legislation and he won the election. He won fair and square! He won the electoral vote 332 to 206 and the popular vote 51.1% to 47.2%. So Americans spoke…………this is what they wanted. This is WHO they wanted **clutch your pearls girls** THEY WANTED A BLACK MAN!!!!!!!!!!!! This country voted Obama in ……… we voted for him knowing this was a major part of his campaign, so if you didnt want this you are either outnumbered or half of the people bitching didnt get out and vote.


    • I know I’m banging my head against the wall. I just have such a hard time truly believing that people HATE Obama so much that they are unwilling to actually educate themselves WITH FACTS not RHETORIC. Who wants to be purposefully ignorant? El Jefe says I really am naive because I truly believe in humanity and that there is more good in people than bad. But how much good can a person have in them if they are unwilling to educate themselves? I just don’t know and it makes me sad for this world.


  2. Well you cant waste time trying to make the world more like us (although clearly it would be awesome if they were) Some people want to listen to Fox News, and they want to hate Obama, and they want to believe everything that is spoon fed to them by the conspiracy theorist. The truth is we have been through many many ups and downs in this nations history and these people running through the streets calling out that the apocalypse is coming are just uneducated. This too shall pass………..OH and if I hear one more person say that Obama isnt qualified to be President because he isnt an American citizen my head will explode. Does ANYONE honestly think that the Democratic Party DIDNT vet their damned candidate?? AND if you are so blinded by rhetoric that you think he is a CIA plant to bring down the country (Ive yet to ever get a reason as to WHY the CIA would want to do this) dont you think they could have found a nice average looking white dude with two white parents? Why would they pick someone who could be even the SLIGHTEST controversial to do that job????? Fuck it……….just make me a tin foil hat, I will meet you at Robyns for wine later. We can drink in the end of the world together because trying to make people believe that we dont have an alien cyborg for a President is frankly exhausting and making my head hurt. I give


    • I just love how people are trying to make “opinions” into “fact.” You can have differing opinions, hell, I’m glad we do. This is America. But to base your “opinion” on lies just makes you ignorant. And that’s not name calling. That’s the truth. I just wish people respected themselves and their country a little more than to just accept shit at face value. It really doesn’t take much to do a little honest, unbiased research. Sigh.


  3. I use the term ‘teahadis’ myself when speaking about the people trying to extort the nation.

    Like the jihadists (Note: not Muslims but that tiny subset of Islam that hates everything about the modern world, except the weaponry) it is their intention to burn America to the ground and rebuild from the ashes. Although considering their economic determinism they more resemble the Bolsheviks than anything else.


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