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Malden girl to Obama: what about those "mean things" people say about your health plan??

Posted by Your Town  August 11, 2009 03:28 PM

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BILL GREENE/GLOBE STAFF
Julia Hall poses her question to President Obama in Portsmouth, N.H.

A girl from Malden asked President Obama a question at Tuesday's town hall meeting in New Hampshire about the signs outside "saying mean things" about his health care proposal.

Eleven-year-old Julia Hall asked: "How do kids know what is true, and why do people want a new system that can -- that help more of us?''

The question opened the door for the president to respond to what he called an "underlying fear'' among the public "that people somehow won't get the care they need.''

The girl later told the Globe that picking the president's brain was "incredible."

"It was like a once in a lifetime experience," she said.

Julia's mother was an early Obama supporter and donor in Massachusetts during the presidential election, so she had previously met First Lady Michelle Obama, the Obama daughters Sasha and Malia, and Vice President Joe Biden.

"This was my first time meeting Barack Obama, and he's a very nice man," Julia said. "I'm glad I voted for him."

She said Obama won a mock presidential election at the Cheverus School in 2008. And on Tuesday, he approached her after the town meeting.

"He said 'great question,'" Julia said. "I shook his hand and got his picture."

Kathleen Manning Hall, Julia's mother, was shocked when her daughter said she wanted to ask a question. They wrote it down beforehand, and Julia didn't miss a beat when Obama called on her.

"It was surreal," said Manning Hall, a coordinator of Massachusetts Women for Obama during the election.

She said Julia was moved by a woman's testimonial on Tuesday before the president spoke. The woman described her ordeal battling liver disease without health insurance.

"Julia talked about it the whole way home," said Manning Hall, adding that they often discuss politics. "We talk a lot about human rights and having compassion for people."

Julia also enjoys soccer and playing guitar, especially songs by Taylor Swift, her favorite artist.

"She entertained my whole family on Christmas Day," Manning Hall said. "She's a wonderful child. She's a very sensitive, smart girl and I'm hoping she becomes more interested in politics and helping people."

She may get her wish. Julia said she'd like to run for office someday, maybe even for president.

"It would be awesome if I could work in politics," she said.

Responding to Julia -- an honors student entering grade 6 at the Cheverus School -- Obama said:

"Well . . . I've seen some of those signs,'' prompting laughter. "Let me just be specific about some things that I've been hearing lately that we just need to dispose of here. The rumor that's been circulating a lot lately is this idea that somehow the House of Representatives voted for "death panels" that will basically pull the plug on grandma because we've decided that we don't -- it's too expensive to let her live anymore. And there are various -- there are some variations on this theme.''

According to a White House transcript, Obama continued:

"It turns out that I guess this arose out of a provision in one of the House bills that allowed Medicare to reimburse people for consultations about end-of-life care, setting up living wills, the availability of hospice, et cetera. So the intention of the members of Congress was to give people more information so that they could handle issues of end-of-life care when they're ready, on their own terms. It wasn't forcing anybody to do anything. This is I guess where the rumor came from.''

"The irony is that actually one of the chief sponsors of this bill originally was a Republican -- then House member, now senator, named Johnny Isakson from Georgia -- who very sensibly thought this is something that would expand people's options. And somehow it's gotten spun into this idea of "death panels." I am not in favor of that. So just I want to -- (applause.) I want to clear the air here.''

"Now, in fairness, the underlying argument I think has to be addressed, and that is people's concern that if we are reforming the health care system to make it more efficient, which I think we have to do, the concern is that somehow that will mean rationing of care, right? -- that somehow some government bureaucrat out there will be saying, well, you can't have this test or you can't have this procedure because some bean-counter decides that this is not a good way to use our health care dollars. And this is a legitimate concern, so I just want to address this.''

"We do think that systems like Medicare are very inefficient right now, but it has nothing to do at the moment with issues of benefits. The inefficiencies all come from things like paying $177 billion to insurance companies in subsidies for something called Medicare Advantage that is not competitively bid, so insurance companies basically get a $177 billion of taxpayer money to provide services that Medicare already provides. And it's no better -- it doesn't result in better health care for seniors. It is a giveaway of $177 billion.

"Now, think about what we could do with $177 billion over 10 years. I don't think that's a good use of money. I would rather spend that money on making sure that Lori can have coverage, making sure that people who don't have health insurance get some subsidies, than I would want to be subsidizing insurance companies.

"Another way of putting this is right now insurance companies are rationing care. They are basically telling you what's covered and what's not. They're telling you: We'll cover this drug, but we won't cover that drug; you can have this procedure, or, you can't have that procedure. So why is it that people would prefer having insurance companies make those decisions, rather than medical experts and doctors figuring out what are good deals for care and providing that information to you as a consumer and your doctor so you can make the decisions?

"So I just want to be very clear about this. I recognize there is an underlying fear here that people somehow won't get the care they need. You will have not only the care you need, but also the care that right now is being denied to you -- only if we get health care reform. That's what we're fighting for.''

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Julia Hall meets the President after the town hall.

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96 comments so far...
  1. As a physician who has worked in both France and in the US, I am positive that the rationing of care and the bureaucracy is far more present with the present US system than with the French system.

    Posted by Bob Perry August 11, 09 04:07 PM
  1. Guess Congress already spent the savings on brand new Gulfstream jets for their transportation. Are there any green jobs involved in that expediture? Is this a Government bailout of the ailing Corporate jet business. Remember it's bad to fly a corporate jet. To get anywhere in Corporate America it's time to shove 4 fat men in a little hybrid.

    Why shouldn't the same rules apply to Congress? Oh and why is Congress not signing Congress, the President, Government workers, Unions, Teachers and Community Organizers up to be part of this Health Care Reform bill?

    Posted by William Tells August 11, 09 04:14 PM
  1. This was pretty obvious that this was a typical "plant" as the White House is so often known for.

    Seriously, a child asking this question? Please.

    Posted by nbptma August 11, 09 04:15 PM
  1. I never in a million years thought they would use a child in order to move this forward in such a self serving way.
    I have children. My health plan is amazing. I pay for it. I have no problem with that. If I lost my job tomorrow, I would do what I needed to make sure my children are covered. That is my priority. My responsibility. My choice.
    My dear child, these people are not saying mean things. They have been trying to have a conversation, but have been told to be quiet and go away. They have been told they are not Americans for asking questions. So, now they are angry. They are not mean, they are trying to be thinking Americans. They are patriots.

    Posted by IRERocks August 11, 09 04:22 PM
  1. If it isnt broke, dont fix it!

    Posted by art August 11, 09 04:26 PM
  1. People are so scared by government intervetion in healthcare that they miss the fact that for-profit insurers, providers, and pharmaceutical companies have put a stranglehold on families (or their employers) as good coverage premiums for a family of four approaches $20K a year and has basically doubled every ten years. At this rate the current spiraling costs will strangle the economy and still 50 million or so have no coverage. They do get treatment though--usually very expensive emergency ward treatment that has to be paid by somebody: the hospital, who passes it on to other patients, or the government, who passes it on to taxpayers with higher taxes. Everything has to be addressed. We cannot go on business as usual.

    Posted by Jim C August 11, 09 04:29 PM
  1. If MINE isn't broke, don't fix it for anybody else....

    Posted by D-Glitch August 11, 09 04:36 PM
  1. enough with the details that we should not even be getting near to for the simple reason that WE CAN NOT AFFORD OBAMACARE.

    All other criticisms are moot beyond this 800lb gorilla in the room.

    Posted by pete August 11, 09 04:43 PM
  1. Art.....IT IS BROKE.....Try to watch something besides the fear mongers on Fox.......read something intelligent on the subject......understand the issues. Don't just use the same tired cliches that have kept us from reform for the past 20 years. And most of all.....have a mind of your own.

    Posted by Scott C. August 11, 09 04:45 PM
  1. Absolutely nothing is beneath this administation. They used a "child" as a plant so the Media MESSiah can give a carefully choreographed and overly rehearsed answer. This is putrid. If he'll stoop to this level, what won't he do? He might control the media, but he can't control the truth.

    Posted by PLEASE August 11, 09 04:53 PM
  1. We need to get these words out to people. There are way too many pathetic rumors going around and these are the people that elected George W. Bush twice.

    Posted by Neal August 11, 09 05:02 PM
  1. I'm glad some of you can afford to pay for insurance, many of us cannot. Our family is blessed to live in a state that has a good public health program. Otherwise, since my husband was laid off last year and is growing a small business, we could not afford any insurance for ourselves and our 3 children. We are both well educated people, and have always been solidly middle-class, but life throws you curves. program is better than the insurance we had through his work, and we never had to switch doctors. It is a godsend for us, and we still make more than many many families. To me it has become a moral crisis where people are being denied even basic healthcare and insurance companies make millions. This is so wrong in this country. Healthcare is not a privilege for those who have great jobs or happen to be wealthy. It is a right, like education, nutrition and housing, yet we turn our heads while a good portion of our people suffer. Consider the fear a parent has who cannot provide even those basic things for their children, usually due to circumstances beyond their control.

    Posted by mary August 11, 09 05:07 PM
  1. Why do people keep feeling the need to say "for profit" insurers, providers and pharmaceutical companies. Why is it wrong to make a profit? What happens to the thousands of jobs held by these companies? INSURE THOSE WHO ARE NOT INSURED. Don't change the whole system of care!!!! Don't FORCE people to enroll in a plan! INSURE THOSE WHO ARE NOT INSURED but who WANT TO BE.

    Posted by melli_fera August 11, 09 05:07 PM
  1. 1) Rationing will occur, thats how they can pay for it.
    2) Quality of care will suffer as there is less money to be made - remember you get what you pay for still applies
    3) Rationing (stopping) quality care at the end of one's life will occur. Palin is in fact correct
    4) Private insurance will not be allowed ( it is in the bill)
    5) This will lead to a revolt of some kind. Hopefully at the ballot box, assuming those are not ACORN run.

    Posted by Dave M August 11, 09 05:10 PM
  1. People are so desperate for relief from double digit increases in health insurance premiums that they don't care that the solutions being offered here are the same "solutions" that got us into this mess. "Managed Care" and "HMOs" were supposed to reduce cost by having big insurance companies negotiating rates with hospitals. Figuring that the power of collective bargaining could be put to work for patients who were often too sick to care what things cost.

    Nice theory, but it turns out that health insurance companies get paid as a percentage of the cost so they have every incentive to increase costs. And the patients care even less about limiting costs because with better plans they are paying a fixed monthly premium. Even worse high deductible plans are subsidizing the Cadillac plans because no one can afford to use a plan that doesn't actually kick in until you have already spent three to five thousand dollars out of pocket. That is quite a co-pay.

    We need fairer health care reform and not reform that perpetuates and exacerbates an inequitable system with ultimately the only real benefit going to insurance executives in the form of bonuses.

    Posted by Pat August 11, 09 05:19 PM
  1. IRERocks: You say that if you lost your job you would still make sure your children were taken care of, but you are leaving out several possibilities that could very much prevent you from doing that, like what if you were diagnosed with a life-threatening disease, and you lost your job and on top of that, your insurance company stopped paying for your treatment? There are many horrendous stories and one of them could be your story and at any future time. It's very difficult to understand how any American could be happy with their own health insurance no matter how wonderful when millions of their fellow countrymen are denied cover and have to go into bankruptcy or don't have any cover. That millions cannot afford simple preventative costs and end up with serious complications is totally unacceptable. You may be doing just peachy but unfortunately that may not be the case for you down the road. Reforming healthcare is in everyone's interest.

    Posted by DMW August 11, 09 05:22 PM
  1. I agree with a lot of what he says BUT, how is he going to accomplish it? I still think the main reason health care is so expensive is because the high cost of malpractice insurance.

    If we want to give 42,000,000 americans free health care then why don't they set up a group of Physicans that don't have to pay malpractice insurance. In other words these 42M people should have NO RIGHT TO SUE FOR MALPRACTICE.

    Wouldn't that be a good idea? I don't know maybe I'm stupid?

    Posted by Jim O August 11, 09 05:28 PM
  1. Thank you, Jim C. As for 'Art', if you don't think the current system is 'broke,' it's time take a closer look. We currently spend nearly 17% of our GDP on health care costs; no other industrialized nation is close (and even at that staggering cost, we have 48 million people uninsured). As Jim C points out, this is already putting a stranglehold on our economy and will continue to do so as it continues to increase. The system as it currently exists is unsustainable and needs to be addressed. Don't buy into the fear factory that's dishing out garbage about trying to put down Granny. Allowing our current HC system to continue to drain money out of our economy while providing no better care than far less expensive systems is what's truly scary.

    Posted by Ben August 11, 09 05:30 PM
  1. You Obama haters are so Patriotic. Brings a tear to my eye. Be sure to play the Battle Hymm of the Republic as you watch more and more of your money get sucked in by insurance companies, supported by Republicans. Or, if you really want your kids to have better more affordable care, then hope Obama's plan succeeds. The idea that we have a great home-grown healthcare system right now is a complete joke, propogated by people that simply hate Obama. Insurance companies laugh as people hand over their hard earned money at higher and higher rates while Republicans tell us that it's more "American" to not regulate these thieves. When all else fails, they throw out the word Socialism to rile people up and create fear. If you honestly don't think something needs to be done then you watch too much FoxNews.

    Posted by chibos11 August 11, 09 05:39 PM
  1. mary - have you looked into programs such as SCHIP and (I believe) Medicare, which are supposed to cover children whose parents don't make enough money to get them health care?

    Posted by Mike S August 11, 09 05:46 PM
  1. We have rationing of care right now! I don't understand why people think that having accountants deny you health care to increase wall street earnings reports is so much better than having an independent panel of experts help regulate the health care system and moderate costs while focusing on improving clinical outcomes as the primary goal. It's interesting that people claim we cannot afford to provide health care at a reasonable cost for all of us, but we sure can afford to build space stations, continue revving the military-industrial complex and bailout the financial system. But no, we can't afford simple affordable health care for all of us. We have our priorities backwards and in our ignorant collective anti-altruism, we get what we deserve. We can't even help ourselves; it's shameful.

    Posted by AMW August 11, 09 05:47 PM
  1. The story has changed so many times and yet we are to have answers to the portions of this reform package which are just not on the table. This is too much and being forced. We are not at the point of a crisis. And as long as Mr. President is touting his "program" by bashing critics like me, an independent with a keen mind, until BHO discusses the points of contention and having rational responses, then I will not support the initiative. Forget it Mr. President. You are a fool and a fraud. I don't buy your slick puerile methodology. Enjoy Martha's Vineyard and help boost its economy. Don't tread on me.

    Posted by skignatio1 August 11, 09 06:05 PM
  1. Chibos11, it's not that we don't think something needs to be done. It's that we don't agree with the House plan. I'm all for tort reform (a huge portion of healthcare expenses as the high costs doctors pay for malpractice insurance gets passed on to the healthcare consumers), negotiating group discounts for prescription drugs, or allowing people to opt into coverage in different states to encourage further competition. I'm not for a government plan that will bleed money just like every other government entitlement program out there and that will put private insurance out of business - because let's be honest, how can you compete against the government option that can simply raise taxes or borrow more money from China to pay for itself?

    Posted by Sean August 11, 09 06:19 PM
  1. Obama will go down in history as one of the biggest LIARS in government. Stop cutting this guy slack- he lies like a rug, simply put. He just stood up in front of the American public and demanded that the "stimulus package" (as he called it) be immediately passed though to create jobs. Then, he followed it up by standing in front of us a few days, ago, stating that his administration has turned everything around. The truth is: the rate decreased due to cyclical reasons (e.g. kids going back to school, etc...). However, the RATE increased! This is what's going to affect people!! Good God- when the RATE only increased by 70k-80k, Pelossi would declare that the results were dismal. Now, they DECREASE by 250k+ and it's...we saved you all.

    Now, the same people are claiming that they will not be sending death consultant to your home? They treat this FREEDOM REFORM as though is going to help us all. Look again; read the bill. Remember: they did not want you to read it in the first place; they tried to put all of what's being discussed through without your knowing.

    How honest has this Obama guy been since riding in on the coattails of Abraham Lincoln? Would Lincoln have voted for this FREEDOM REFORM? (He ain't no Lincoln- period.)

    Posted by anonymous August 11, 09 06:24 PM
  1. I recently purchased a GENERIC antibiotic out of pocket that cost $180 for 10 pills. I've watched the price of laptop computers drop from $3,000 to $400 in a matter of a few yyears. So why does a generic lifesaving antibiotic cost this much? Ask why hospitals can charge a payient $30 for 2 Tylenol when I can buy a bottle of 100 generic for $4. The real question is why are companies allowed to charge these fees- especially for generic drugs? Simple- they have high powered lobbiists greasing the palms of politicians and members of the medical profession- then write off billions of $ as research and advertising. This is criminal! That is why I refuse to contribute to any cancer, AIDS or fisease de jour fundraiser. The $ goes for research & development of drugs/treatments most people can't afford or for $200,000 executive salaries meanwhile I'm likely to die from pneumonia because I can't afford the antibiotics. I don't have health insurance because at my job it is $800 a month, which is more than 1/2 my take home pay.

    Posted by taxed2death August 11, 09 06:25 PM
  1. DaveM wrote:
    "Private insurance will not be allowed (its in the bill)"
    I say, okay...show me. Tell me exactly where it says that, in any bill. Seriously...give me a reference even to a page (let alone a line). I'm pretty sure I'm going to hear silence in response.
    If I had a dollar for every person I've heard say that something (and its usually something outrageous) is "in the bill," and then not provide any reference to WHAT bill and WHERE one might find it, I'd be a millionaire by now. All that tells me is that, sadly, too many people are still willing to take their political views from the partisans' talking points and have ABSOLUTELY NO IDEA what is true or untrue. How tragic for America...

    Posted by SettleDownNow August 11, 09 06:36 PM
  1. The bottom line is that Obama himself doesn't even know what's in the bill. Also, I agree with many of the comments about the little girl being a plant. Obama's whole presidency is a script, from his press conferences to his town hall meetings.
    And it's funny how everyone is blaming the Republicans when there are some Dems that do not suport this bill. If any of you have confidence in your reps and their ability to pass legislation that's good for America then call them and ask them if they've read the bill. The answer will be no, and yet they are trying to sell it to America. The blind leading the blind.

    Posted by David August 11, 09 06:45 PM
  1. Competition breeds excellence. A national health plan will suppress those striving to be the best in their field, because it will not matter. Americans will be stifled and not given the opportunity to select or pay out-of-pocket for "the best." I assure you "the best" will be reserved for our elected officials. Why can't we decide if we want to select our own insurer and pay for it. Those who cannot afford to, should be subsidized by the Obama plan.

    Posted by mayo August 11, 09 06:51 PM

  1. A plant for political purposes or another brainwashed youngster indoctrinated to vote for liberal Democrats the rest of her life. I bet Obama won her "mock election" in school 99-1.

    Posted by realist August 11, 09 07:32 PM
  1. They needed a child to ask the question, because they needed the "mean" word in the question to imply that the matter is 'bad'. The sad thing is that the question was poorly delivered, although I give her credit for attempting to sound genuine, and the president's response was tpp perfect, and far from genuine.

    Posted by TaxPayerInMA August 11, 09 07:37 PM
  1. do you realize that part of the plan is for every family that grosses 75k for them to pay 10% of their earnings to go towards this plan!!

    Posted by fedup August 11, 09 07:47 PM
  1. The Republicans had eight years and did nothing expect get us into war and
    bring the economy to it's knees. Now because the Democrats are actually trying to make something good happen for EVERYONE, not just a chosen few, they can't stand it.

    Posted by AnnaW August 11, 09 07:51 PM
  1. The single provider debate is a red herring. Most health care expenses are paid to hospitals, doctors, and pharmaceutical companies - not to insurance companies. As health care becomes a citizen's right, these groups should be nationalized.

    Posted by Doctor Melvin August 11, 09 07:53 PM

  1. The Child has more brains than all the Republicans put together!!!!

    Posted by annaw August 11, 09 07:54 PM
  1. If you haven't read the bill, it's worth a read. It's 1000 pages but with super narrow margins and big fonts. Not too bad.

    There is a lot of misinformation out there, a lot right here. Read it yourself. No, it won't take away your private insurance, rationing is not in there, the bill is revenue neutral, etc, etc.

    H.R. 3200, easily located in google.

    Posted by sl August 11, 09 07:57 PM
  1. Dearest Art, is it really possible that you believe the system is not broken? It surely is, and it's getting worse by the day. I work in the system and trust me when I say that if you want to use tired cliches, try using this is a disaster- like a freight train rolling down hill and picking up speed. Anyone in this country who thinks we can carry on indefinitely with our inefficient, inadequate healthcare "system" staying this course is delusional.

    Posted by leenie August 11, 09 08:00 PM
  1. this is why people don't get the facts. Because we headline a serious discussion with an 11 yr old. Yeah fine, she was cute but it does not pose a serious question that might have been asked by an adult who actually paysssssss.

    Posted by mark August 11, 09 08:03 PM
  1. I was there today, sitting in the bleachers.

    I would like to address the poster who thought the child was being "used" by the White House. Walking toward the high school, I passed a six year old with a sign that said "Obama lies, Grandma dies!" As a mom of three, I was almost sick that a any parent would let such a young child hold a sign like that. Talk about using a child!

    There was no way anyone was planted. How on earth could Obama pick out one person from more than a thousand, seated at random. I was one of the first there, well before anyone was sitting in that little girl's section. Hundreds of people were raising thier hands to talk.

    I thought it was a fanstic talk and I am much, much more informed than I was before. No one is talking about government-run healthcare. This is about a government-run insurance option IF people want it. Don't want it? Don't buy it. He still needs to come up with one third of the cost for it though (rather than just throwing everything into our national deficit like our former president) and I'm still waiting to see how that one third will come about, but overall I suppor the idea.

    Posted by Annie August 11, 09 08:03 PM
  1. So now the great leader Obama hides behind the skirt of an 11 year old girl. . . . how bad can it get. talk about set up. This guy is a disgrace.

    On the bright side if he is this desperate than we may still win back our country!

    Posted by JD August 11, 09 08:08 PM
  1. it is broke (for everyone), some are just too blind to notice. For those who are now healthy or wealthy, they can deal with the health care system as it is but for the rest of us we can not. Open your eyes, look at all the fact and support health care reform.

    Posted by steve August 11, 09 08:11 PM
  1. Stop focusing oh who asked the question than what his answer was and what the ISSUE is. The health care system sucks, its owned by the insurance and drug companies! The same companies that are driving this fear campaign against universal healthcare. Checkout how the people of other countries feel about their systems. The people who go to a hospital and spent $0 to deliver a baby, or go to a pharmacy and no matter what drug it is pay the exact same amount. God forbid we level the playing field. I have insurance, I am employed. I'm not worried if I get a costly disease, I'm covered. If I lose my job, I can pay cobra, to keep my insurance for 18 months, if I can afford it, then what, no insurance, no coverage.

    Posted by Kim August 11, 09 09:18 PM
  1. Where are these commenters from? I thought we had intelligent compassionate folks in this area. Sounds like the teabaggers have invaded "boston.com".

    I have a great job and a nice plan for me and my kids. I also know my elderly mother pays a ton out of pocket for very basic medication. I also know people who've been laid off who are starting to really freak out about health care, almost as much as the paycheck itself. My exwife's job has 1/3 of her paycheck going to solo care!!!!!!!!

    And these are just the people I happen to know. So, in other words, just because you're fortunate and the system just happens to work for you, doesn't mean there's not a lot of room for improvement. And unlike a lot of things, healthcare should be a *right* in any modern society that can provide it.

    Posted by mike August 11, 09 09:25 PM
  1. I don't understand why he needs to come to the Northeast to push this plan. He'll have it hands down. It's the folks in flyover country who have been in a coma since Daddy "no new taxes" lied, then watched Clinton oversee the greatest economic growth in the history of the US, only to watch W oversee one of the greatest economic collapses since The Depression.
    Don't forget the Republican "smaller government" and their Patriot Act.
    Or "Mission Accomplished"
    Or Colin Powell admitting how he took George Tenet's lies and used them publically to gain support for war in Iraq...leading to the senseless death of thousands of US soldiers - many the sons and daughters of republican voters
    Seriously, if you vote Republican at the Federal level in this country or support the Republican agenda - you're either a dumb paid shill, or just plain dumb.

    Posted by Brian August 11, 09 09:35 PM
  1. I believe that everyone (US citizens) should have access to "basic" health care items such as physicals and common medications at a cost to be shared by that individual. I do not believe that those who can provide for themselves should incur some of the costs of their health care even if it is a meager amount. Non-citizens should not be eligible for health care on my dime.

    Not everyone can afford a Cadillac or Mercedes and owning one is not a right. If someone wants to own one they have to make sacrifices whether it is by working hard or saving for the nice car. More people have to want to make personal sacrifices to make their lives better.


    Posted by Joe August 11, 09 09:39 PM
  1. I thought this was a great question (since everyone wanted a better explanation) and I think the President did an excellent job explaining it. He certainly answered questions that I had regarding this proposed plan.
    I think people should research the plan, and learn more about it before making snap judgments and comments.

    Posted by Cynical2447 August 11, 09 09:42 PM
  1. Enough of the socialist agenda. Enough is enough, I cant wait for the revolt.

    Posted by rayh August 11, 09 09:44 PM
  1. Let's try this again and remember the 1st amendment: All the way from Malden to Portsmouth NH for her 15 minutes. She must have a heck of a stage mother!

    Posted by XENOPHONIC August 11, 09 09:47 PM
  1. So....

    ....What happens when Joe the Plumber gets laid off? He has Cobra for 60 days sometimes paid for by the company laying him off for a max of 60 days. Then he can continue coverahe at upwards of $400 a month while on unemployment and making payments on his car and supporting his family. Unemployment pays like $350 every week before taxes. He's paying 1/3 of his income for health care.

    If he cant pay it (more likely scenario), he goes without hoping nothing happens. What if something does happen?

    I would like to have the reform package giving me a safety net.

    Posted by massm August 11, 09 09:51 PM
  1. Unbelievable. A little girl asks an innocuous uestion and you lunatics are screaming about how Obama must have planted her. Meanwhile, George W. Bush's administration had a "journalist"/male hustler named Jeff Gannon whose job during W.H. press conferences was to ask the softest of softball questions.

    But yeah, that was okay because everything George W. Bush did was awesome whereas Obama is clearly a Muslim terrorist... or a communist... or a Kenyan imposter... or whatever.


    Posted by tinisoli August 11, 09 10:09 PM
  1. Sorry, the whole Manchester event was simply another staged campaign rally - one of the few things Obama knows how to do.

    Absolutely the young Malden girl was a PLANT. Disgraceful sleight of hand and melodrama.

    The real news is that there finally is a grass roots movement of proud Americans who are rising and expressing their frustration and fear of the Democrats' rapidly advancing socialism. Of course none of these people were allowed to speak at the Manchester charade.

    Posted by Paul Short August 11, 09 10:12 PM
  1. Enough of the socialist agenda. Enough is enough, I cant wait for the revolt.
    Posted by rayh August 11, 09 09:44 PM

    Oh really, can't you? You think that will help this country? Liberals were not calling for an overthrow of Bush. They were not carrying guns, advocating violence. We had an election. Obama won. If you feel Obama and the Democrats are somehow violating the Constitution, then file for impeachment. Cry all you want, but for decades there has been dissent and debate, and protests. Yet now, because we have this Democrat with a funny name and dark skin, we need a revolution or a civil war? "Take our country back"? Back from who? Go campaign, write a letter, and vote. People in this country are really starting to frighten me. If you read these neocon, right wing blogs, in combination with mainstream voices such as Hannity, Michelle Malkin, Limbaugh... never mind actual Congress members like Michelle Bachmann and her paranoia... you'd be disgusted at the level of paranoia, hate, and lunacy.

    Posted by toots August 11, 09 10:12 PM
  1. Either there are alot of NH'ites commenting on this or Massachusetts has become angry white male country= REPUBLICAN. The stupidity level is scary.

    Posted by jack August 11, 09 10:19 PM
  1. who is gonna pay for this? the middle class with higher taxes. who won't be paying for it? the illegal aliens who will have free health care. The elderly who have to talk to someone on how to end their lives? I SAY NOBAMA!

    Posted by WILL August 11, 09 10:21 PM
  1. Dirty secret No. 1 in Obamacare is about the government's coming into homes and usurping parental rights over child care and development.

    It's outlined in sections 440 and 1904 of the House bill (Page 838), under the heading "home visitation programs for families with young children and families expecting children." The programs (provided via grants to states) would educate parents on child behavior and parenting skills.

    The bill says that the government agents, "well-trained and competent staff," would "provide parents with knowledge of age-appropriate child development in cognitive, language, social, emotional, and motor domains ... modeling, consulting, and coaching on parenting practices," and "skills to interact with their child to enhance age-appropriate development

    Unbelievable!! Under the nationalized health plan Federal Agents Carlos, Cindy and Mohammed are going to enter Americans' households and brainwash them into the way the government wants American kids raised?

    People who have read the 1000+ page monstrosity are reacting angrily with good reason. The Liberals who follow Obama blindly don't bother to read the bill, since it's too complicated.

    Posted by Paul Short August 11, 09 10:32 PM
  1. Oh, man, it's a great time to be a Democrat.

    Look at all the Elmer Fudds on this thread, complaining because the wabbit honked their nose and dove back down his hole. Aw, and they thought they really had him this time!

    It's funny, because he always waits to do this until his opponents start crowing that they've beaten him. It's going to be a great eight years.

    Posted by joe from Lowell August 11, 09 10:41 PM
  1. It's funny and weird how you people get angry over the possibility of receiving affordable health insurance.

    Blah blah blah "I have a great plan, and if I lose my job, I'll do whatever I can to provide health insurance for my kids." Yeah right. Have fun eating from trashcans after you go bankrupt. You and the kids can sleep in a cardboard box while the CEO of BCBS makes $20 million a year. And when the insurance company puts a cap on the amount that they're going to spend on your treatment for a year, that's when the fun begins. Talk about a "death panel."

    But whatever, you have a great plan, so enjoy.

    Posted by zab August 11, 09 10:49 PM
  1. hmm family has met pres family.. sounds like a staged question.. How about waht does this kid understand about th efact of wasting more money when its not ecinomical feasible by expanding an already inefficient system at this time, with haste and rushing into it.... and why are the senators on a different plan when he already spoke about 1 plan we would be on. now its 2.. if its not good for them its not good for you and if it was equal we still can afford it now.. improve it , improve efficiencies, then slowly roll it out... children first, lower income, small businesses then more to the masses.. NEXT TERM whoever is in

    Posted by beenhereawhile August 11, 09 10:52 PM
  1. Can anyone explain why this has to be rushed through congress so fast? In addition, if this will be so wonderful for America, can we get all of our politicians to drop their medical coverage (better than anything you and I can get) and be covered under the plan they throwing together so fast?

    Posted by Yanquidawg August 11, 09 10:58 PM
  1. I have 3 brief comments.
    1) Julia Hall's assessment was flawless. There is a visible meanness in the signs and shouts decrying the efforts to achieve healthcare reform.
    2) For those who wish to keep government out of Health Care, please have the courage of your convictions and opt out of Medicare. It is a Federal program in case you didn't know.
    3) For those carrying signs saying "no Federal database", you can opt out of Social Security.

    Posted by SamLynn August 11, 09 11:02 PM
  1. I think you are all correct in that the system needs to be reformed, but I think you, and the Republicrat politicians, are all wrong in thinking the system pertains mainly to health care and taxes. For one, there are many, many more options available for consideration than just CNN or FOX, Left or Right, Democrat or Republican. It is our responsibility as people of the republic to direct our representatives to execute our collective will. We all see every day the result of our inaction.
    The way I understand it, the cost of health care is at the core of this entire debate. Several have touched upon lobbyists and malpractice costs as major contributors to this greater problem, and I think that is absolutely correct. Even with "healthcare reform", as defined by the Democrat-Republican spectrum, the true issue of cost is being completely avoided. Possible ulterior motives aside, the proposed solutions will only burden everyone with the ridiculous cost of medical care rather than only those few who need continuous coverage--which has been the case ever since pharmaceutical lobbyists got tangled up with our representatives (and we failed to intervene). The reason these socialist (I use this term as it is defined, not as certain ignorant people would throw it around) democratic healthcare systems work in other countries is because medicine and physicians costs so much less in those places; their socio-economic values evolved with their welfare legislation, and their economic infrastructures are designed to sustain it.
    In America, it is a completely different story. Private insurance does employ thousands of people, as do medical litigation, pharmaceutical corporations, lobby groups, and activist organizations, among countless other related interest groups. Most of these are for-profit companies. Our economy, instead of developing alongside social welfare reforms, has grown along side almost continuous war. It is a poor match for sudden, drastic change-over. So, Obama's plan is doomed to perhaps work, but never to work well, without hand-in-hand sweeping economic reforms, which I think most of us would be absolutely unwilling to sign ourselves up for, regardless of political affiliation.
    The bottom line, though, is that we all obviously have legitimate concerns about this issue. It is unfortunate that the television and the internet all-too-often tell us that there are only two talking heads, only two options, only two parties. In fact, there are, as some of you pointed out perhaps less concisely, 42,000,000 Americans voicing as many options and as many disparate view-points. I hope that none of us will end up being so ignorant as to believe that we can only do as they say.
    We hold the reins. If a plan succeeds, it is because we elected the right people and supported the right bill. If a plan fails, it is because we as 42,000,000 people elected the wrong people and supported the wrong bill. Putting our faith in one man--no matter what pin he wears, what color he is, how much experience he has, whatever--to make a right or wrong decision, is frighteningly naive. But that is exactly what I hear happen in every debate, every forum, every conversation I overhear about this Obama fella.

    Posted by roflcopter August 11, 09 11:13 PM
  1. adorable child, precious question. doesn't move along the debate however, although no other questions or answers have either. I want to hear the answers to:
    1. why do 210 million people have to change what is working for them?
    2. how many uninsured people are non-citizens?
    3. why isn't there a catastrophic illness plan being considered rather
    than a move toward socialized medicine?

    Posted by cantstandya August 11, 09 11:45 PM
  1. mary..yes, i am luck to to be covered. however my husband and i both work, but we struggle like many other americas. ANY tax increases, and we will be stretched too far, our only option being either my husband or i getting a second job. do you think it is fair we have to do that to pay for your families insurance?? consider the fear of me not to be able (with 2 working adults) to take care of my family, save for college,etc. because our 2 incomes are not enough since we are paying for your families insurance? you really think we should have to take on a 3rd job? by the way, your husband hasn't found a job in over a year?? sounds like all the freebies you are getting is making it a bit too easy to sit home and have the working folks pay your way.

    Posted by luvthesox August 12, 09 12:16 AM
  1. Folks, the reality is we cannot afford what is being proposed by the Obama Administration. I've walked on a car lot many times wishing I could afford a nice luxury vehicle, but my wallet says no. This is like the owner of the car lot saying take the car, you can afford it, I know you can...and when the bill comes due and I can't pay, the car goes back. WE CAN'T AFFORD IT. Check the fed's wallet people. WE ARE BROKE, IN DEBT, and the dollar has lost its standiing as the standard. The Chinese and others are going to move off the dollar...why? Because the Chinese know we cannot afford the lifestyles they've been subsidizing.

    Posted by Rich August 12, 09 12:19 AM
  1. @57. "Why is this being rushed through Congress so fast?" Mainly, Republicans don't want their Senators/Congressmen to pass it. So, instead of talking it over with the Dems, they delay it as best they can with child-like charts and puns, hoping for healthcare talks to lose steam. Republican talk shows (FoxNews, Rush) keep coming up with lies and they actually pay people to come to town meetings simply to argue and make people upset for no reason. I wish their viewers/listeners would actually do research on their own. Anyway, the Dems want to come up with a solution quickly so that they can put this issue aside and then work on other things for America. What I want to know is what are the Republican views on how to fix this? All I hear is complaints from them, but they don't seem to want to fix it at all.

    Posted by Meekman August 12, 09 01:25 AM
  1. Healthcare is our right? Thats the best argument against healthcare reform I've heard. The bill of rights was put in place to PROTECT our rights from government control, not to place them under government control...even for our own good. Since when did Americans start to feel that the government somehow owes us? I for one still believe in capitalism. Obviously there are flaws in our current healthcare system, but the notion that the government will be able to run it more efficiently is ridiculous. Show me one government-run program that is completely free of the "greed" that people love to accuse CEO's of having. The difference is, when a company isn't running efficiently, it goes out of business (at least that was what used to happen before government bailouts, which were, of course, for our own good), but when a government program isn't running efficiently, more money is usually thrown at the problem. I miss the free market.

    Posted by Gabrielle August 12, 09 02:03 AM
  1. "This was my first time meeting Barack Obama, and he's a very nice man," Julia said. "I'm glad I voted for him."

    VOTED FOR HIM?

    The kid's 11 right? And good for her. Igt's not her fault a cynical corrupt Democrat machine wants to exploit her. Way to go MOM.

    But when Democrats start using kids and well as the dead to vote, then WOW.

    You would have thought folks at the polling booth may have thought she looked a little young. But then, we are talking DemCorrupt Central.

    Posted by Jack Bauer August 12, 09 04:08 AM
  1. NOBAMA!

    Posted by Rob August 12, 09 05:34 AM
  1. Interesting comments. Average Americans analyze and comment on Health Care Reform. Democrats just comment on their hate for Republicans. By the way, she was definately a plant and so were the people bussed in to hold pre-printed "We Trust Obama" signs. Who was "manufactured"?

    Posted by Jan August 12, 09 07:09 AM
  1. No one is disagreeing that there are problems with the current health care system, yet you don't blow up the house to fix a leaking bathtub, backed up toilet and a sagging floor. However, I think some of you would and then wait for the government to give you a new house.

    Why don't politicians consider tort reform? How about removing mandates? How about - the most scary of them all to politicians - let us shop around - even across state lines to find the best and affordable coverage. That's a nightmare to our career politicians because that would give us too much power. And we all know that the politicians agree that us serfs are too stupid to make decisions on our own.

    Somewhere brought up about keeping your private insurance. You will be able to for a while. You see, you can't adjust your plan. What you have now, well, that's it. Want to make any changes? Can't. Either what you have now or the government plan. And eventually private insurances will go away. Why? See, government doesn't have to make a profit. It can run on a loss and increase prices, i.e. the postal service. However, BCBS and the like have to make a profit. They can't operate in the red. They can't borrow $$$ from China. They can't print money at midnight. Thus, eliminating private insurance companies and surprise - jobs! But then, again, I think most of you believe only rich people work at insurance companies. So, no private insurance and more jobs lost = more people on the government dole. Oh, and these jobs lost- are those part of the 2 million that Obama created and/or saved?

    And the big question: how are we going to pay for this? Nothing is free from the government. Nothing. Do you realize that we all paid for the clunkers deal? Probably not, many probably thought this program was from the bottom of the government's heart. No, it was our tax dollars/ You know, those pesky little things that we could have all used for our families or ourselves. Do you realize that there are talks about a Value-Added Tax (VAT) in addition to all of the taxes that we all ready pay? Isn't that great? Boy, that's going to help the economy recovery immediately! Just ask Europe about VAT. Just remember the money has to come from somewhere and to the politicians we are their piggy banks.

    I can't understand why some what more government involvement in their lives. Perhaps some won't be truly happy until someone from the government lives with you full time, helps you pick out your clothes, fixes your meals, etc.

    I'm not ready or willing to give a part of my life, my freedom over to the government.

    Posted by act August 12, 09 08:04 AM
  1. I love the whiners about us "Obama haters". We learned from the best. We are only responding with the same amount of measured respect that Bush got the last 8 years. I am also old enough to remember how the left treated Reagan.

    I pity anybody stupid enough to fall for that contrived yesterday.

    There are more of us than there are of you. Live with it.

    Posted by Rick H August 12, 09 08:10 AM
  1. Any effort to reform health care is admirable because IT IS BROKEN when an older person cannot even get a flu test/drug that works for two weeks - that's my experience with the healthcare system - and I DO HAVE expensive health care insurance and a paying job.

    But let's face it, what's really wrong with health care is that people have stopped the caring part of the health "care" equation - in part because the system in place pays them to hurry up and get to more patients, just as the drug companies pay them to prescribe medication instead of focusing on prevention or alternatives - that's the profit motive gone awry! When health care started changing in this country was when it stopped being the arena of non-profits and family doctors and was made "for profit" - treating sick people is not a PROFIT-making endeavor, it's a human endeavor that should have a patient focus, not an investor focus!!!!

    So the real reform needs to come from us and how we think about health care. Think about it, please.

    Posted by bentcar August 12, 09 08:15 AM
  1. This staged town hall was a joke. Funny how the left and this administration are the most guilty of what they accuse the right of doing and is exactly what the left excels at----astroturfing, hatespeech, namecalling, fear mongering, and worse, using children.
    Health Care Reform---yes! Complete overhaul and government takover---NEVER!!!

    When you have 85% of the people in this country satisfied with their coverage, as well as a good portion of the remainder choosing to be uninsured and happy with that decision, the system is NOT broken. We do indeed need to make some changes to bring prices down and to make sure people who cannot afford health care have some kind of coverage. You do not force your citizens to change what they are satisfied with and paying for by themselves.

    Anyone who thinks the governmant can properly run and manage health care for 300 million people is either completely naive or completely ignorant. And yes, if this bill is implemented as currently written, it will lead to single payer option, which will lead to rationing of health care because they will run out of money. Cash for Clunkers anyone???

    There is so much other government intrusion into our personal lives included in this bill, it would take forever to address it all. So let's get some reform where needed and leave the rest alone. It works and people are happy with it.

    Posted by Sylvie M August 12, 09 08:34 AM
  1. The girls mom is a big Obama campaign donor, as is her law firm. She has a picture posted on her Facebook page of herself with Obama. And I won't comment on the stupidity of this administration getting a child to ask an important health care question she would have no way of understanding. Well I guess I just did. And the
    audacity to say he wanted a tough question to show the audience wasn't a bunch of plants. And that was near the end! He takes the public to be a bunch of idiots.
    This is "Hope and Change"? Embarrassing.

    Posted by Dennis Shaper August 12, 09 08:41 AM
  1. The Republicans are holding it up??? That doesn't wash. The Democrats have a 60 vote majority. They could pass it right now if they were in agreement. So far they've created and passed everything else without the votes from the Republicans (look at the first stimulus bill). I'm sorry, but I'd like them to slow down and stop this push towards socialized medicine, and look at why we're really in this situation. Right now you can't go outside of MA to purchase insurance. The problems with the ininsured pool is tricky due to the fluctuation in and out of that pool as people find new jobs. Why not fix the problems the politicians (Rep and Dem ) have already created, before we add on to this mess?
    One way I know they're having trouble selling this across the country, is the number of times they've changed what they call it. Based on yesterday's townhall, I believe it's now "heath insurer reform".

    Posted by Yanquidawg August 12, 09 09:02 AM
  1. I watched the Town Hall Meeting that Arlen Specter had. Now that was a debate! i'm no fan of Specter, but at least he allowed people to express themselves. In comparison Obama's staged event was shown up for what it was. A charade, a sham, a fraud. Why anyone continues to trust this man is incomprehensible. He's an actor, a performer, uses well-rehearsed scripts. He's not "cool", he's a cold fiish. No passion, no sincerity, just an arrogant superiority, who knows exactly what everyone needs. How are we going to live for 4 years with this absolute phoney leading our country? Please God, give us patience.

    Posted by Jennie Maroney August 12, 09 09:26 AM
  1. A prime example of the Saul Alinsky socialist approach to handling the debate at its best. Mr. Obama learned well from the Alinsky philosophy how to manipulate the message and plant phony questions to answer. It's also handy to have no one in audience to disagree with "the Great Ones' pronouncements from on high. Hello!, just check the mother's background, she's been a longtime shill for this administration. This is the typical David Axelrod and Chicago political Machine that helped create this President.

    Posted by Luis August 12, 09 10:08 AM
  1. I believe this young lady was an ASTROSMURF.

    Same as Astroturf, just cuter.

    Posted by Skinner August 12, 09 10:35 AM
  1. Talk about astroturfing charades..Why in the HELL is the Coordinator of Massachusetts' Women for Obama shipped in to New Hampshire to have her child provide cover for this disaster of a President?

    I particularly love the "intellectual leftist" here in their smugness labeling anybody who doesn't fall to their knees worshipping Obama as "Stuuuuuupid.

    I think the following I found SHOWS who THE TRULY STUPID IN THIS MATTER TO HAPPEN TO BE:

    "Obama just released his 2009-2012 Transportation Plan for America:
    The plan specifies that the govenrment will give 45 million people 'free' gas and a car with promises that highway traffic and pollution will go down, competition will go up, and as an added benefit, our total transportation costs, joblessness, and taxes will decrease because everyone can drive anytime they need to."

    Right now 30%-40% of Americans would just accept this nonsense because a 'community organizer' who had been relegated to holding ACORN workshops, Barack Obama uttered the words!


    A liberal is someone who feels a great debt to his fellow man, a debt which he proposes to pay off with other people's money."


    Posted by LogicalUS August 12, 09 10:40 AM
  1. i dont think anyone used the little girl i beleive she and alot of her generation sees and hears everything going on in this country and children are disiplined when they say ugly things,WE ADULTS SHOULD BE MENTORS TO THESE LITTLE ONES,and yes I do beleive people are in fear of what they dont know.Ive listened to both sides and I simply refuse to listen any futher to these screamers and hateful words written on signs held in the hands of the people who are in fear because they wont stop being immature long enough to listen to the real facts.Lots of protesters are getting their info from the person next to them and where did they get their info?SO PLEASE DONT INSULT THE INTELENGENCE OF A CHILD RESPONDING TO HER BY SAYING SHE WAS BEING USED.I TRUST OUR CHILDREN MORE THAN THESE LOUD ANGRY ADULTS AND IM IMBARESSED FOR THESE HATEFUL ONES ACTING OUT IN FRONT OF THE YOUNG GENERATION BECAUSE ITS OBVIOUS THEY DONT KNOW HOW TO BE IMBARRESED FOR THEMSELVES, ITS SAD TO SEE HOW SCARED THEY ARE BECAUSE OF THEIR LACK OF KNOWLEDGE.THIS COUNTRY BELONGS TO OUR CHILDREN,LETS SHOW OUR CHILDREN RESPECT AND MAKE THEM PROUD OF THEMSELVES. GOD LOVES ALL

    Posted by Teresa August 12, 09 11:26 AM
  1. Reform the insurance companies..........not healthcare!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    The girl was definitely a plant.

    Posted by BJH August 12, 09 11:47 AM
  1. Manning Hall has donated thousands to Obama as has the law firm she works for. To use her own child as a human shield is a pathetic prop. Ann Coulter was right, the moonbats are pulling out all the stops to prop up this President. How come it took the Obama 6 whole months to pick out the "first dog" yet he wants to ram this healthcare debacle through in one single month?

    Posted by elmer August 12, 09 11:50 AM
  1. When will some of you learn that this is not a matter of "Demoncrat" vs. "Republican"...instead of thinking for yourselves, you're letting your party of choice dictate your thoughts. Guess what: Neither side of the aisle is looking out for YOUR best interests. They're only looking out for themselves, and until you realize this, we're going to be stuck in a perpetual power struggle where both sides simply inflate the size of government and further their grasp on our freedom.

    "A government big enough to give you everything you want, is big enough to take away everything you have."
    -Thomas Jefferson

    Posted by Oust Them All August 12, 09 12:03 PM
  1. It is interesting to see how other parts of the country view this. First of all, it is sad to note a certain disdain that many in the East have for the rest of the country. Either we are all citizens with the same rights or this is not a Republic any longer. I would love for this to be a civil debate, however many of us in the previously noted "flyover country" have tried to get our elected officials to respond to us. We have tried by email, snail mail, phone and FAX. The lack of response and the unwillingness to address the issue headon makes me think there is something being hidden. Anyone who has had to deal with teenagers is familiar with this type of ingenuous behavior when caught misbehaving.

    As for this bill being the answer, I am sorry to say it is not. It is overreaching in that it not only applies health measures but funnels money into community organization that have NOTHING to do with personal health. This program could be scaled back to offer pooling across state lines, offering pools to small businesses , TORT REFORM and countless other less expensive measures that would truly allow those happy with their coverage to continue and those who wanted outside coverage to afford it. But already the Democrats, in servicing their campaign contributors of Trial Lawyers have taken away the possibility of tort reform, even though this and the associated premiums charged to providers is part of the largest chunk of rising costs. There could be a case made for having local centers similar to the MInute Clinics at CVS to handle small issues for a lesser charge. But this will not cover the people who are here illegally. And that is the biggest problem of all. The Democrats, especially in the southwest, are desirous of having the growing Hispanic vote. Failing to provide "free" healthcare to illegals would alienate this group. But providing it no questions asked will add billions to the bill. Plus with the porous nature of our borders, we could possibly end up as the healthcare source for the rest of the world.

    The economic question is even more perilous. Although many like to point to Europe, specifically France, as the solution, France's program is in the red and taxes will have to be raised to maintain the level of care. The UK and Canada both resorted to allowing private insurance that some people use in order to recieve timely dental, surgical or specialized care. If we would have to get private insurance on top of what the government offers, we aren't making any gains here. The estimated total tax burden for residents of Oregon after this bill is around 56%, for Californians it is 54%. And for those of us who currently have healthcare, its cost would rise to be aournd 11% of income. Right now my insurance is $400 a month. It would double to over $800 if passed as written. As a high school teacher, that pretty much sinks my personal budget for anything beyond basic shelter, food and energy.
    This is why we protest. You might want to ask why the supporters for healthcare feel like they have to bus in supporters, as they did in New Hampshire, or why they are advertising on Craigslist for people in California and Oregon to support this bill. Who is astroturfing now?

    Posted by Ellen K August 12, 09 02:52 PM

  1. Stacks the audience with his own people.........Uses a Teleprompter to speak to everyone 95% of the time...........Spends more time campaigning than in the White House............Attacks protesters as un-American while his own history of community organizing and intimidation is how he got his start.........Blatantly denies what he demonstrably says in clear unedited videos as not true........Bate and Switch..........Do as i say not as I do..........This emperor TRULY HAS NO CLOTHS !

    Posted by Patrick August 12, 09 08:24 PM
  1. Why does everybody think whatever it is they want is there god given right. What about my right to keep my measly paycheck. Stop looking for the handout. I'm sick of the waste and fraud at my expense. America was founded by people who pulled up their boot straps and made it on their own after coming here to escape this very oppression many of you now seek. Read the constitution..

    Posted by francis frabini August 12, 09 08:44 PM

  1. I can name at least 40 countries (including Angola and Soluth Africa) with better medical facilities, higher sophistication in technology, etc, than we sufferfrom in the US. We should learn from them. Maybe we can join the medical system of one of those countries --- Cuba for instance. I bet they have a great system.

    Then there is Canada --- talk about rationing care. Need a kidney - expected to die within 3 months without one? They will put you on a list that will virtually guarantee a new kidney in 9-12 months. They don't need a death panel, they just put you on the goodbye list.

    Boomers and Seniors unite. If we let the government take over the system, Social security will become solvent virtually overnight after killing off the "detritus" of older people.

    It was a great country we lived in and it could be again if we stand up for ourf constitutional rights, including our right of free speech, and get involved in the electoral process..

    Posted by hank kuhlmann August 12, 09 09:12 PM
  1. Barack Obama is a talented speaker. But if you know your history, you can see right through him. Obama spells out COMMUNISM really loud!!! He is a Marxist and no one can deny it.

    Posted by jeff August 12, 09 09:39 PM
  1. the little girl who asked Obama about the mean signs at yesterday's Health Care Town Hall is the daughter of Democratic activists. , just google it in the news section , you will fine the story

    Posted by Dave August 12, 09 11:10 PM
  1. I have worked as an office and busuness manager for a physicians office since the 70's. Every month as I pay the medical supplies, most prices are increased by the suppliers..It can be syringes, gauze, medications etc, etc,. In the mean time for years, some of the doctor's fees are being decreased more and more. No one says anything about the increase in purchasing. They pay no attention to overhead;but they sure look at doctor's fees!

    Posted by Betty August 12, 09 11:14 PM
  1. Leaving aside the utter hypocrisy of Obama denigrating "organized opposition" then using an 11 year old shill to tee him up a softball question regarding health care, I am more disgusted that ANY 11 year old was allowed to be part of this debate. This subject is too important to waste even a minute of the Presidents time to answer a lame question from a child. This country has to to stop the elevation and adulation of the "wise child." You know, the one you see in most TV shows and commercials patronizing their parents (particularly their father, usually portrayed as a barely-functioning imbecile). Anyway, I don't need to hear the health care thoughts, opinions or questions of children who have still have baby teeth. What a lame, groan-inducing moment for the Pres.

    Posted by RoloT August 13, 09 11:41 AM
  1. Go read today's news. Obama is working behind closed doors with LOBBIESTS from INSURANCE COMPANIES AND PHARMA, who has the stranglehold on who? This is exactly the types of things you libs complain about. Where is your outrage against Obama working with lobbiests? Quit posting lies you worthless communist liberals!

    Posted by Bay Area Patriot August 13, 09 02:52 PM
  1. If anyone was paying close attention...he had a cue card he pulled out of pocket and glanced over for his "boy/girl" picks. If was not staged and random choice...what did he need the card for? Does he really think we have "Stupider" written on our foreheads?

    Posted by Janyce August 13, 09 03:10 PM
  1. It is amazing of the number of rants where the argument goes back to Bush. That is the problem no Obama-lover wants to address. Bush is no longer in the picture. All of these mistakes are Obama's and his liberal cronies. Give it a rest already. Every administration inherits garbage. It's what you do with it that makes to a hero or a goat. It's time to quit being victims and as Biden would say, "Stand Up".

    No one argues your Bush rants, so move on and try to convince us how socialism is going to be better. Even Stevie Wonder can see what's coming.

    Posted by Japheaux August 13, 09 03:13 PM
  1. The bottom line here is why would you trust anyone that has lied so much, then when caught, slander the people that EMPLOY them. Then say they will vote regardless of the MAJORITY? That is no longer democracy. Anyone that would do these things have no morals and should not and can not be trusted, period! That in itself is enough not to want this bill. Look at the stimulus. They claimed that it would create jobs and keep un-employemnt down. It has done neither and then they flat out lie and say it was not supposed too? If you but their bull, you are ignorant! All you can do is slander and bring up someone that has nothing to do with this(Bush) and what they did. Who cares what Bush did, this is about Obama, not Bush. Instead of answering our questions(becuase you can't) you slander us. And for those of you who think that Democracy is not majority rules, then how the hell to you elect people? That congressman from Pennsylvania should be recalled. He makes up his own verison and has the gall to call it Democracy? Please, use common sense people. Lastly, if you cannot take care of yourself, then do not have childeren and burden us. Why should I have to pay for you? And then to try and say we are greedy. You are greedy, expecting us to pay for you, because you are irresponsible, you have lost sight of reality. No liberal has ever done anything for me. I had to work and earn everything I have!

    Posted by Bay Area Patriot August 13, 09 05:10 PM
  1. Supposedly there are 50,000,000 in U.S without healthcare but per the Congressional Budget Offices own numbers, lets look at what that consists of to determine if we need an overhaul.
    1st, nearly 10,000,000 of that number includes people who are not citizens.
    2nd, roughly 17,000,000 of the people classed as uninsured live in households making $50,000 or more a year and can technically afford to buy health insurance but choose not to.
    3rd, 45% of all of the "uninsured" will be insured again within 4 months who then get insurance.
    In conclusion, there's no crisis need for nationalized or governmental healthcare.
    Real tort reform, the kind trial lawyer loving Democrats have fought for 50 years, is what will bring costs down.
    We should deport illegal's who turn up for health care.
    Cobra expansion or minor subsidy would address the short term needs.
    Those earning over 50k who don't buy it should not be aided for their own stupidity or choice.

    Posted by Eddy August 14, 09 02:49 PM
  1. Fix healthcare don't break it.
    1) Initiate massive, real tort reform & free us from frivolous & lottery based lawsuits. 10% of health care costs are direct medical malpractice costs. Malpractice awards have doubled since 1997. To defend themselves doctors over test which adds more to the cost
    2) Require Evidence Based Medicine. Currently the medical profession is more of an apprenticeship system when it comes to consistency in care prescribed after a diagnosis is concluded. This lack of treatment consistency adds to malpractice suits and quality of care. The government should regulate and require evidence based medicine be practiced
    3) 12 million illegal's get care under the current system & doctors are not required to turn them in. To control health care costs & our borders, make it a legal requirement for doctors to turn suspected illegal's over to the authorities
    IF WE SIMPLY MOVE TO A NEW PROVIDER, THE GOVERNMENT, THE COSTS WON'T DROP

    Posted by Eddy August 14, 09 02:49 PM