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Debates Forum

  1. 24 Sep '09 18:17 / 2 edits
    http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20090922/ap_on_go_co/us_health_care_medicare_6

    "Republican lawmakers rebuked the Obama administration Tuesday for telling health insurance companies to stop warning elderly customers they will lose benefits in health care legislation, which some equated as a gag order."

    So the quesiton is this, should insurers be censored regarding their free speech? Lets even assume that they are misleading people for one minute. If the President of the United States can get up in front of the country and lie to the Congress and the rest of the country about covering illegal immigrants, then why can't insurers do the same? Despite this fact, is it lawful for the Congress to restrict their free speech, even if that free speech is misleading? If they are going to put a gag order on private insurers, perhaps they should also put a gag order on the Congressional Budget Office Director Douglas Elmendorf who contradicted Obama's assertion that seniors would not see their benefits reduced under the health care overhaul.

    So here we have two high ranking political opponents contradicting the other. Obviously, one of them is wrong, or dare I say, lying. So why can't those in the private sector do the same, assuming they even are misleading people? Is this just a taste of more to come from Big Brother? Are people going to be bullied into silence if they are deemed opponents of the "progressive movement"?
  2. 24 Sep '09 19:43
    Originally posted by whodey
    http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20090922/ap_on_go_co/us_health_care_medicare_6

    "Republican lawmakers rebuked the Obama administration Tuesday for telling health insurance companies to stop warning elderly customers they will lose benefits in health care legislation, which some equated as a gag order."

    So the quesiton is this, should insurers be censored rega ...[text shortened]... ng to be bullied into silence if they are deemed opponents of the "progressive movement"?
    For the executive branch to attempt to quash speech opposing the presidents policies through cohersion and or intimidation is a violation of the constitutional right of free speech. Plain and simple.
  3. 24 Sep '09 22:54 / 3 edits
    Originally posted by utherpendragon
    For the executive branch to attempt to quash speech opposing the presidents policies through cohersion and or intimidation is a violation of the constitutional right of free speech. Plain and simple.
    So who is going to call him on it?

    Where are the Joe Wilsons in the Republican party? Of course, they give lip service in their objection, but it is time to begin to take action. In short, put up or shut up. Take it to the Supremes. It is time to take action or expect more of the same.
  4. Standard member telerion
    True X X Xian
    24 Sep '09 22:56
    Originally posted by whodey
    So who is going to call him on it?

    Where are the Joe Wilsons in the Republican party? Of course, they give lip service in their objection, but it is time to begin to take action. In short, put up or shut up. Take it to the Supremes. It is time to take action or expect more of the same.
    RHP lawyers, analysis?
  5. 24 Sep '09 23:02
    Originally posted by telerion
    RHP lawyers, analysis?
    I have the aweful feeling that all of this partisan bickering is nothing more than political positioning and I'm sick to death of it. What I am looking for is change and if the Republicans can't clean house then they can all go jump off a bridge as far as I am concerned.
  6. 24 Sep '09 23:04
    Originally posted by whodey
    http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20090922/ap_on_go_co/us_health_care_medicare_6

    "Republican lawmakers rebuked the Obama administration Tuesday for telling health insurance companies to stop warning elderly customers they will lose benefits in health care legislation, which some equated as a gag order."

    So the quesiton is this, should insurers be censored rega ...[text shortened]... ng to be bullied into silence if they are deemed opponents of the "progressive movement"?
    They feel the public has been acclimated to this sort of thing enough for them to get away with it. They are probably right.
  7. 24 Sep '09 23:08 / 1 edit
    Originally posted by joe beyser
    They feel the public has been acclimated to this sort of thing enough for them to get away with it. They are probably right.
    Then we need to acclimate them out of office and make their lives as uncomfortable as possible.
  8. Standard member telerion
    True X X Xian
    24 Sep '09 23:09 / 1 edit
    Originally posted by whodey
    I have the aweful feeling that all of this partisan bickering is nothing more than political positioning and I'm sick to death of it. What I am looking for is change and if the Republicans can't clean house then they can all go jump off a bridge as far as I am concerned.
    Well, to be honest whodey, I don't see a new party emerging anytime soon. You'd probably be better off fighting to change one party. Look at the change in the Democratic party. The rise of the Blue Dog Democrats was a response to voters who are unhappy with the Republicans (for one reason or another) but who fundamentally reject the socially and economically liberal policies of the previous Democrats.

    Maybe you can get some Republicans in power (or Democrats) who care about what your saying. In a sharply divided Congress, representatives that can form blocks in the center often wield quite a bit of power.
  9. 24 Sep '09 23:17
    Originally posted by telerion
    Well, to be honest whodey, I don't see a new party emerging anytime soon. You'd probably be better off fighting to change one party. Look at the change in the Democratic party. The rise of the Blue Dog Democrats was a response to voters who are unhappy with the Republicans (for one reason or another) but who fundamentally reject the socially and economic ...[text shortened]... Congress, representatives that can form blocks in the center often wield quite a bit of power.
    My guess is the Republicans are just sitting back waiting till the next election to benefit from all the negative feelings the Dems have produced under Obama. Then they will return to business as usual.

    As for myself, I will fight to keep the tea parties energized and fighting mad once the Republicans gain power again. In fact, I hope they turn up the heat rather than toning things down. Its the only way to get the point across.

    As far as a third party, I think it unlikely since both seem to have a monopoly on things. For it to be succesful, I think it would take a very charismatic individual to become President. You know, like a Ross Perot type that strikes a cord in people. I don't think it would even really be hard to do. All you would need to do is put someone up their who presents a sane energy policy without cap and trade, like the Pickens plan, and who enforces the immigration laws on the books, and someone who vows to be fiscally conservative. All of these issues are enormously popular, yet, neither party has it within themselves to present it to the American public.

    As for Ross Perot, he claimed that he and his family was threatened when he was surging in the polls. The next thing you know he drops out. I just wonder if going against the political parties is akin to going against the mob. Of course, I would like to not think so, but I can't rule it out either.
  10. Standard member sh76
    Civis Americanus Sum
    24 Sep '09 23:33 / 1 edit
    Originally posted by telerion
    RHP lawyers, analysis?
    Doesn't seem like there's much of a legal issue here.

    Of course the insurers have the Constitutional right to tell customers anything they like.

    Obama administration officials have the Constitutional right to tell the insurers to shut up.

    GOP lawmakers have the Constitutional right to tell the Obama administration to stop trying to bully insurers.

    etc.

    As long as all anyone's doing is talking, there's no legal issue.

    Of course, if the government took steps against the insurers in their official capacities, that's another matter.

    you don't lose your freedom of speech just because you get elected.
  11. 24 Sep '09 23:36
    Originally posted by sh76
    [b]Doesn't seem like there's much of a legal issue here.

    Obama administration officials have the Constitutional right to tell the insurers to shut up.
    Yea, just like Al Capone had the right to tell people to shut up. Of course, I'm not saying that Obama is going to have them all killed, but I think it is somewhat daunting to have the most powerful man in the nation telling you to shut up. Of course, like you said, if the insurance companies continue and they can prove Obama has retaliated in some way, then it hopefully will all hit the fan.
  12. Standard member sh76
    Civis Americanus Sum
    24 Sep '09 23:41
    Originally posted by whodey
    Yea, just like Al Capone had the right to tell people to shut up. Of course, I'm not saying that Obama is going to have them all killed, but I think it is somewhat daunting to have the most powerful man in the nation telling you to shut up. Of course, like you said, if the insurance companies continue and they can prove Obama has retaliated in some way, then it hopefully will all hit the fan.
    Okay; let's assume for the sake of argument that the insurers are lying about the healthcare bill. I'm not saying they are, but let's assume.

    What IS the Obama administration supposed to do? Are they not allowed to fight back? Is it completely a one-way street? Companies and groups can say anything they like about the White House, but the White House can't say anything back.

    As long as it's just talk, let both sides say whatever they think will convince the voters.
  13. 24 Sep '09 23:49 / 1 edit
    Originally posted by sh76
    Okay; let's assume for the sake of argument that the insurers are lying about the healthcare bill. I'm not saying they are, but let's assume.

    What IS the Obama administration supposed to do? Are they not allowed to fight back? Is it completely a one-way street? Companies and groups can say anything they like about the White House, but the White House can't s ...[text shortened]... As long as it's just talk, let both sides say whatever they think will convince the voters.
    Of course, they are free to say just about anything they desire. As I said, if any retaliation can be proved, hopefully it will all hit the fan. Of course, proving it or even having it publicized is another matter altogether. The simply truth of the matter is that Obama is in the drivers seat and holds the cards, not the insurance companies.
  14. 25 Sep '09 00:59
    Originally posted by sh76
    Doesn't seem like there's much of a legal issue here.

    Of course the insurers have the Constitutional right to tell customers anything they like.

    Obama administration officials have the Constitutional right to tell the insurers to shut up.

    GOP lawmakers have the Constitutional right to tell the Obama administration to stop trying to bully insurers.

    e ...[text shortened]... 's another matter.

    you don't lose your freedom of speech just because you get elected.
    "Obama administration officials have the Constitutional right to tell the insurers to shut up." - sh76

    I disagree with this,sh76. Think about what you are saying and the implications. The White House can easily stifle free speech and any decent to its policies this way.
  15. Standard member telerion
    True X X Xian
    25 Sep '09 01:18
    Originally posted by sh76
    Doesn't seem like there's much of a legal issue here.

    Of course the insurers have the Constitutional right to tell customers anything they like.

    Obama administration officials have the Constitutional right to tell the insurers to shut up.

    GOP lawmakers have the Constitutional right to tell the Obama administration to stop trying to bully insurers.

    e ...[text shortened]... 's another matter.

    you don't lose your freedom of speech just because you get elected.
    I wasn't sure if an insurance company had some legal responsibility not to lie to its customers (assuming that they are). I'm sure there's a lot of grey area between opine and lie.