Go, Prince Charles!
I don't know why it is, but I can't help but like the guy.
International soccer body to discuss Quebec hijab ban
Asking a Muslim woman to remove her hijab is like asking a conservative Christian woman to remove her shirt. Someday people are going to get this.
Boy, 14, attacked on school bus
I wish this kind of thing had made the news when I was a kid.
Obama urges DUP to commit to power-sharing
Not sure who I'm voting for yet at all, but this guy certainly in the running.
February 6, 2007
Edwards Details His Health Care Proposal
By JOHN M. BRODER
WASHINGTON, Feb. 5 — John Edwards proposed a detailed plan on Monday to provide health care coverage to the 47 million Americans who now go without, becoming the first major presidential candidate to do so.
Mr. Edwards’s plan is ambitious and expensive, adding as much as $120 billion a year to the nation’s health care bill. Money for the proposal would come from increased taxes on well-to-do families, from new fees to be paid by companies that refuse to provide health insurance for their workers and through steps to streamline the delivery of health services.
Mr. Edwards, a former senator from North Carolina, was the Democrats’ vice-presidential nominee in 2004.
The Edwards plan is a pastiche of ideas that have been introduced at the state and federal levels, including some that have been derailed by opposition from business groups, doctors and health insurers.
Mr. Edwards, in an interview on Monday, described the American health care delivery system as dysfunctional and said that incremental steps would not cure it. “This proposal embraces the concept of shared responsibility to provide universal health care,” he said.
The plan would be partly financed by eliminating tax cuts for households earning more than $200,000 a year, cuts that Congress approved in the Bush administration. Mr. Edwards said he would also offset the program’s cost by using the estimated $15 billion in capital gains taxes that go uncollected each year by requiring brokerage houses to report capital gains from taxpayers’ stock sales to the Internal Revenue Service, just as interest and dividend income is reported now.
Mr. Edwards also said that billions of dollars could be saved by making the health system more efficient and investing more in preventive care. The Edwards plan would provide tax credits or subsidies to low-income families who cannot afford health insurance, expand Medicare and the federal program of health care for children, and create a federal health insurance agency that could become the basis for a single-payer system that would eventually do away with private health insurance.
Drew Altman, president of the Kaiser Family Foundation, which studies the American health care system, praised Mr. Edwards, saying he was the first candidate in the 2008 presidential race to offer a credible and comprehensive plan to cover the uninsured. But Mr. Altman also said the plan faced high practical and political hurdles.
“This is a plan that borrows from different approaches in an attempt to cut through the paralysis in Washington between left and right for many years,” he said. “None of these plans are easy or without issues that others can attack you on.”
Senators Hillary Rodham Clinton of New York and Barack Obama of Illinois, Mr. Edwards’s two most prominent rivals for the Democratic presidential nomination, have not yet released detailed health care plans and declined to comment on the Edwards proposal.
One provision of the Edwards proposal certain to draw fire is a requirement that companies provide health insurance for all workers or pay 6 percent of their payrolls into a government fund to buy insurance for them. This type of “play or pay” program was an element of former President Bill Clinton’s failed 1994 health care plan that was shaped in large part by Mrs. Clinton.
Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger included a similar mandate for employers in his universal health care proposal for California residents. The plan by Mr. Schwarzenegger, a Republican, calls for employers who do not provide health coverage to pay 4 percent of their payrolls into a government health insurance fund.
The National Federation of Independent Business, a powerful lobby that represents small-business owners, said such mandates amounted to a job-killing tax on small companies. “Health care mandates are a nonstarter for our members,” said Stephanie Cathcart, a spokeswoman for the federation.
Mr. Edwards also proposed creation of regional health insurance markets, to use the purchasing power of millions of consumers to drive down health insurance premiums. The concept is similar to that in Mrs. Clinton’s 1994 plan to create health insurance purchasing alliances.
Mr. Edwards’s proposal would also strengthen the Food and Drug Administration’s ability to monitor new drugs after they reach the market, a provision generally welcomed by experts. But it also includes restrictions on drug companies’ advertising directly to consumers, which is vigorously opposed by the pharmaceutical industry (original article is here. I c/p'ed it because it's a pain to subscribe to the Times just to get an article).
I like this, too. I think. It's not anywhere near perfect, but I can't help cheering on a proposal that's "vigorously opposed by the pharmaceutical industry".
Daley cruises to sixth term
Dude. Is this guy liek, Methuselah or something?
In other news, I'm downloading the pilot of The Black Donnellys from iTunes. I can't remember the last time I actually looked forward to watching a new show (S&A doesn't count, it sort of hit me broadside without warning. I didn't have time for anticipation). I could go out and buy me some bunny ears and maybe be able to actually watch it on *gasp* a real television! But nah, I'd rather DL it and get it without commercials, because I pretty much hate commercials. If anyone knows a source? You can email me. :)
Okay, off to renew my nursing license, since today's the last day. Dude, my LIFE is putting things off until the last minute. I should change it, but I probably won't. At least not until the last minute.