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December 17, 2009

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Flyoverstate: It's even worse not only is Nebraska exempt from the Medicare payments forever. Their insurance companies (Mutual of Omaha for example) are exempt from the tax on other medical benefit providers. How in the hell is this a level playing field for America's insurance industry? Merry Christmas if you live in Nebraska.

Read the other day that AARP supports this bill because their "real business" is to sell gap insurance and with this bill their gap insurance policies will go up (because Medicare payments to docs will go down and the docs will only take people who carry gap policies). Their "front" is senior rights, etc. but in reality they are an insurance company. And the AMA is for this bill because of some accounting deal they worked with the government. They apparently own some code and the government will now require all medical bills to use this code and the AMA gets paid money for every time their code is used. Follow the money. Nebraska followed the money, Louisianna followed the money, Lieberman followed the insurance money for his insurance state. That's what it is about. Too bad I don't have any money to follow.

Last night I watched as Nelson defended his buy out with "I hope all the other states get the same thing". Well they don't and if they did then it would further increase the spiraling federal debt burden we are facing.

Then, I watched the AMA endorse the bill. I thought to myself why would the AMA endorse the bill? Many doctors I know hate the bill and are telling me they will refuse to treat medicare patients and retire early. Then an Alabama DOCTOR serving in the House switched parties to get away from the runaway Democratic train. (Notice how little "news coverage" has been made of that in the media?)
Then, I found out that only 29% of the doctors in America belong to the AMA and of that only 17% of the Doctors in America support this bill. So why is AMA endorsing it? If 4 out of 5 doctors oppose it--and they are the ones who provide the services then services will improve?

Millions and millions of seniors in America are against this bill so why is AARP endorsing it?

A majority of Americans don't support this bill so why is it being passed and celebrated by our elected proxies? If anyone thinks that American politicians represent the people of America then this orgy of spending on social programs and "pork" with a majority of the people objecting should make it clear that politicians do what they want.

Nelson will likely vote for the bill tomorrow despite the Governor of Nebraska and the other Senator calling for him to deny the favorable status Nebraska got for his vote. A bill condemned by House Democrats as containing public funds for abortion, something Nelson swore to defend against. I can't wait to find out why the Catholic Church opposes this bill on the basis of abortion but Nelson suddenly decided it was ok.

As a small business owner yesterday was the day of renewal of our healthcare plan. For about 40 employees we pay $600,000 a year to Blue Cross for coverage. No one would like to see Halthcare reform more than a business person like me. But in this bill Blue Cross will be assessed a tax beginning with passage of the bill. If BC gets taxed then sooner or later they will pass it along to me. How exactly does that reduce costs? And, it is possible that we will be considered a "Cadillac" plan and the premiums or part of them be taxable benefits to our employees. Since I am an employee that means more tax to the business as well. So I did what I have to do: reduce benefits to our employees in order to reduce costs in anticipation of what may well come our way in the spring after our leaders work out (plot) the differences in the House and Senate bill. It continues to amaze me how something so badly needed in America, where 86% of us cover our employees, has been formulated as a welfare plan to cover 30 Million people who are not our responsibility. Especially at a time we are being asked to create or save jobs. I've ben conned in my life by some of the best but I've always had the option to protect myself and my people. In this case I am being conned by the Sheriff calling himself my President. Today he actually used the "I" word once again declaring that the Senate Bill contains 95% of everything "I" called for. Our humble servant, the President, cannot use the word "we". It seems to me that the one who delivered him his bill of goods was Harry Reid.

And, now the rest of us are left to wonder what is the next economic inhibitor they will throw at us? Energy, cap and trade, tax increases, a new stimulus bill, more pork? Anything but what we need: a break from cost increases and access to capital. You know why foreclosures are so high? People ran up too much debt and many people think it was because of the way Dodd and Barney ran Fannie and Freddy. You would think that the Democrats would learn from that. Perhaps when the White House and Congress receive the foreclosure notice from the American people they will experience it for themselves. For those of you who read this "Have a Happy Holiday".

Flyoverstate--I saw the 60 Minutes show on the midwest. Those of us lucky enough to live in the DC region have little appreciation for the trouble the rest of America is in unless we travel and purposely seek out information on the economy. We live in a world of government services and a city in which the Feds spend trillions of dollars. SO when unemployment increases into the 6% range we think the sky is falling. And, truthfully it is. Many of my friends who are small business owners are not only bankrupt but have lost their homes. When I travel I have made an effort to drive around and look at all the empty office space and retail space in these towns. I was in Atlanta recently and the technology centers were vacant. In small towns south of Richmond Virginia the retail centers have lost most of their small businesses. It will be a long time for things to return to normal. I cannot imagine being in towns with 20% unemployment and trying to run a business.

Unfortunately, the Administration and Congress seem to give lip service to small business needs. It is as if they they view small business owners as the fat cats of America who they target with their over $250k a year income distribution taxation schemes. And, they sell it as if it is "fair" for the working class. there is nothing "fair" or rational about reducing the incomes of employers (referred to as Capitalists by this administration). To do so simply motivates those who risk it all every day to create jobs for others to become conservative and layoff workers, cut spending and entertain less. I'll say it until someone listens: In America 76% of the people work for companies withl less than 250 employees. And, less than 1% of the companies in America employ more than 250 workers. So, exactly why is it that we work so hard to bail out big companies and satisfy labor unions that are employed by big business? Why is the SBA loaning less money each year? Why have the banks shut off credit to small businesses? Where is the stimulus for small business? Obama talks like he is on top of the problem. But, it is the opposite: he is actually targeting the small businesses for the taxes he needs to fund his social programs. Forget all the smoke and mirrors of his compensation czar aimed at Wall Street Executives--that's for show. The tax increases are aimed at small businesses and their owners through helathcare, energy increases and penalties, increased IRS taxes and sure to come payroll taxes. If the small businesses of this country are not left alone (let alone stimulated with capital) then we cannot do anything but contiue to lay off people and cut spending and benefits.

I applaude your willingness to share Bo's blog with people you know because these issues are important and there are lots of ideas out there as well as lots of voters who need to be motivated.

Can't believe the mess in the Senate and the bribes that are being paid. How does a regular working guy ever trust his government again? Business is still down out here in middle America and jobs are scarce. We don't need insurance hikes, tax hikes, cap and trade and all other liberal mandated policies,

We're doomed. And LisainSt.Louis, I'm sending this blog to every person I know.

WOW! To both Bill and William. How can we spread these blogs so that many can read them? Very powerful, thoughtful stuff coming out...even if we all don't agree on everything.

An amazing assessment and summary of the short road we've traveled, Bo. I'm sure many of us in business a few years ago would never have imagined that we could be facing this financial threat to the American economy. My greatest fear for the American economy was the success of a terrorist attack against the power system, the internet, the gas refineries, the food system, the water system or the school system that paralyzed American managers from being able to plan for the future. Never in my wildest scenarios did I believe that the economic threat to America would come from the government itself. But here we are.

Obama and the Democrats are like a runaway train. They are hell bent on changing America using a depression caused mostly by inadequate government oversight on the banking and lending institutions (they created to help people buy homes) as the rationale. The American people clearly made a mistake in 2008 and are quickly realizing it. The arrogance of Obama is that he is not changing what he plans to do but rather he is playing games with us with his sheepish grin as if we were all uneducated idiots. While he mentions fiscal restraint he spends more. He rushes to "save" us from global warming by promising to fund our competitors (small nations) clean air programs with money we will borrow from China. He continues to pass more and more unfunded programs to add to the impossible to fund requirements of Medicare and social security not to mention the interest on the national debt.

Much of America has realized their mistake and are anxious to reverse it. But, 2010 is a long way off. By 2010 we could see massive new taxes and expenditures in the energy and environmental area. Already there are rumors of more constraints on oil exploration and drilling in the US. The EPA is threatening new regulations on CO2 emissions. In no other way could America hamstring itself than more environmental bills.

Yesterday after Minnesota's new comedian Senator rudely cut off Senator Lieberman's speech on the Senate floor, Senator McCain said it rightly "I don't know what's going on around here but it's got to stop". Sarah Palin is no scientist but she is an experienced Governor with a reasonably good fiscal track record and she has taken on both Gore and California's Republican today, Democrat tomorrow, Governor on global warming and held her own. Things are heating up as this financial rape of America takes place and only the elections of 2010 can end it. But to end it the tea party people must join ranks with the Republicans to balance things out. Any movement to third party candidates will play right into the hands of the Democrats as they split the anti-Obama vote. Sarah Palin has two choices to really impact America: remain a strong conservative/Repbublican voice in the party or become a nonpolitical conservative advocate for those people in either party who work toward her beliefs. In this way she can influence millions of voters toward a candidate. It would be a big mistake for her to run as an independent despite her drawing power. She would simply split the Republican vote.

I don't care if you are a liberal, moderate or conservative it is in your interest to work to return America to fiscal responsiblity. Vote for candidates who will limit spending and require government elimination of inefficient and wasteful programs.

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