About Me

In writing the "About Me" portion of this blog I thought about the purpose of the blog - namely, preventing the growth of Socialism & stopping the Death Of Democracy in the American Republic & returning her to the "liberty to abundance" stage of our history. One word descriptions of people's philosophies or purposes are quite often inadequate. I feel that I am "liberal" meaning that I am broad minded, independent, generous, hospitable, & magnanimous. Under these terms "liberal" is a perfectly good word that has been corrupted over the years to mean the person is a left-winger or as Mark Levin more accurately wrote in his book "Liberty & Tyranny" a "statist" - someone looking for government or state control of society. I am certainly not that & have dedicated the blog to fighting this. I believe that I find what I am when I consider whether or not I am a "conservative" & specifically when I ask what is it that I am trying to conserve? It is the libertarian principles that America was founded upon & originally followed. That is the Return To Excellence that this blog is named for & is all about.

Friday, July 31, 2009

An Inspirational Meeting

For several months now my mother-in-law who lives in Cleveland has been very anxious to personally contribute to the FairTax effort.  After paying for a room @ a local senior citizens home she organized a group of her friends (see attached photo - some were camera shy) to attend a FairTax seminar this past Tuesday that she asked me to present.  The presentation was very well received by the 13 people in attendance & I believe that we have formed another FairTax group on the west side of Cleveland.  Later that evening the Cleveland area District Director met with Carol & me after he finished work @ 7:30.  He will work the group into any activities he plans.  All in all it was a wonderful experience.
My mother-in-law has had two life threatening operations the past 22 months & attended the seminar in a wheelchair.  Her work & desire to contribute was extremely inspirational to us all.  If everyone across the country would make a contribution like this the FairTax would pass into law in about five minutes.

Monday, July 27, 2009

National Tea Party - Washington D.C.

There is a National Tea Party scheduled on the Washington Mall on Saturday September 12.  FairTax Community Coordinator Donna Pascale is coordinating this event for the New Jersey area FairTaxers and is looking into chartering a bus if there is enough interest. Please contact Donna at 732-604-3880, dsoup@optonline.net to let her know if you would like to attend.  Donna will fill you in with the details for the event which is estimated to take 13 hours door to door round trip @ a cost of $30 per person.  This is a great opportunity to particpate if you can.  So far 20 people have signed up.
For members not in NJ who would like to attend please let Donna know & our NJ group can try to connect with you @ the event.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Cap & Trade Vote Leads To The Stalling Of Universal Healthcare Reform

Well some good has come of the recent Cap & Trade vote that passed the House 219 to 212 in that people - including many from our group - have let their elected reps know of their displeasure with the vote. It appears that BO & the Democrat controlled Congress will not pursue Cap & Trade again until the fall - but rest assured it will return. A crucial few of the 219 House Members who made the difference in Cap & Trade passing may be feeling like they have been hung out to dry. In particular NJ Republican freshman Congressman Leonard Lance had demonstrations in front of his district offices & he received countless calls & letters letting him know that his constituents were not fooled by a mimeographed response that I got my hands on & forwarded to people in his district.

Because of the problems with the citizenry not accepting Cap & Trade after narrowly passing the House Universal Healthcare Reform has also started to stall as people learn more about it. BO's goal of passing the 1,018 page Universal Healthcare bill before the August recess is in jeopardy. But BO is still pushing knowing that if it fails now it will be all the harder to pass later. BO had a short news conference today during the lunch hour & will follow it up on Wednesday night with a prime time news conference which in turn will be followed by a road show - all geared to pass Universal Healthcare.

Although I detest the exercise myself it is good to keep the pressure on to let our elected reps know that Universal Healthcare is not the answer to the healthcare reform that is needed. The last time Americans let their feelings be known in mass outside of an election was in June 2007 when the Senate was about to give away our Social Security & Medicare benefits to illegal aliens in exchange for perceived future votes - it worked that time in our favor & this one is of equal importance to our futures. If defeating Universal Healthcare is important to you go to this link for the telephone #s of every member of the House & to this link for the #s of every Senator to let your elected reps know what you think of Universal Healthcare. Keep the links handy because you will need them again.

If our elected reps receive enough feedback like the excellent thoughtful letter below sent by a member of our group to his Congressman re Cap & Trade we have a chance that Universal Healthcare reform will also be postponed until such time that we can elect people of a caliber so that we do not have to go through such an annoying exertion to hold on to the things that are the foundation of our way of life.

Dear Mr. Lance,

I read your response to the objections raised regarding your vote on "Cap & Trade". I must say that I find your arguments breathtakingly uninformed. You state that you voted for the bill because it is good for New Jersey. You say that New Jersey is ahead on "green" legislation and it is time to level the playing field with other states. This implies that this state's laws have placed it at a competitive disadvantage relative to other states. Is it now time to handicap the entire country so that the nation will be at a competitive disadvantage with the rest of the world? Parasitizing other states by trading or selling allowances may result in short term gains for this state but will ultimately bring down the entire nation.

Furthermore, you claim that this bill will increase "green" jobs. Anyone who has seriously looked at this bill has concluded that it is a jobs killer and any gains in "green" jobs are offset by a greater loss in other areas. In addition, making energy from fossil fuels more expensive without viable alternatives is foolhardy. This will only result in driving up the cost of companies doing business and those costs will ultimately be passed on to consumers, some of which live in this state.

Finally, you claim that your voting record to date is fiscally conservative and to be admired. This administration with the willing help of the Democrat Congress is a juggernaut that is bound and determined to enact legislation that will destroy our once vibrant capitalist society. The bills you voted against were going to pass no matter what you did. This bill was the first opportunity to put the brakes on and possibly derail this onslaught. This time you had a chance to make a difference and do what is right for America but you and six other "Republicans" sided with the enemy. Also, I could not care less that Tom Kean called you. He is one of the weak, moderate Republicans that have participated in bringing this country to its knees.

The next chance you will get is "healthcare reform". This simply must not pass! Please do not participate in the destruction of our healthcare system and try to hide behind some quote from The Star-Ledger or calls from former politicians. Remember, what is bad for the nation is also bad for New Jersey.

P.S.: You did not read the entire bill.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Universal Healthcare Is Much More Than The EMR Issue

The last two messages since last Sunday re Electronic Medical Records (EMRs) were presented from the viewpoint of two of the doctors in our group.  Below is some very thoughtful insight from a self-employed professional who has worked with EMRs for years.  We are fortunate to have these views from people in the field rather than hear about it from the anti-American hostile media.  All three of these accounts portray different problems not only with EMRs but with the entire universal healthcare system that BO is going to try to jam down our throats in short order.  All three messages taken together present a horrible cumulative picture.  Better bone up on the the healthcare issue in the next few days to make sure you know how important it should be to you because there is something like a 1,018 page initiative coming your way from BO that will cost you dearly - not just in money but maybe with your life & your limbs.
---Original Message---

As someone who performs the transcription of medical records for physicians in clinic settings, private practices and very large hospitals, some of this information is very troubling to me.  Regardless of thoughts pro or con to the healthcare reform, rather, the threat of EMR is personal to me, in that I have lost jobs relative to EMR, as a self-employed professional.  The doctors cannot have things both ways.  When the prospect of EMR was tossed about - which this has been ongoing for years and has been implemented long before BO became president, the physicians were very pro this idea as it
would save them money.  That, of course, after transcription and records were sent to China or India or the Philippines because it would save the physicians tons of money but came back illegible or frighteningly incorrect, from a legal standpoint.  Of course, the majority of these physicians also do not provide healthcare benefits to their employees, and hospitals jumped on the bandwagon, too, not totally for accuracy purposes, but rather, so they could save in not having to provide benefits for personnel to take care of medical records.  I have negotiated contracts with physicians and with hospitals, and always it is about the cheapest possible way they can keep records, without increasing their malpractice risk.  That is not about privacy or accuracy, but MONEY.  Now, EMR is actually "old hat" to those of us in the business, rather, we are now perfecting speech recognition programs and they are doing much better than I had expected.  So much of this discussion is redundant and not relevant to the larger market.  Our own family physician here in VA uses EMR, carries around a handheld little machine and inputs all of our data, and absolutely LOVES it.  He insists it has saved him tons of money, and keeps their records with extreme accuracy since he inputs data right there as he is visiting with us. 
I think the bigger picture that needs to be addressed  is the fact that we are ALL currently paying through our insurance premiums for the uninsured who cannot be turned away from emergency rooms, which in turn are being used for primary care.  The percentage of emergency room visits that are NOT of an emergency nature, is astounding.  That and the fact that someone has to stop the insurance companies from telling the physicians what they can or cannot do with respect to patient care.  As much as I don't want the government controlling my healthcare choices, even less do I want the money-hungry insurance companies dictating what I can or cannot do with my body and my care, and that of my family.  With over a million dollars spent every day to keep healthcare from ever being competitive causes me to think that we need to get control out of the hands of the insurance companies. 

Monday, July 13, 2009

Another Doctor's Response To EMRs - Part Of Universal Healthcare Scam

Further to last night's subject message re Electronic Medical Records - below is further insight to what BO's Universal Healthcare plan will mean to us from the perspective of another doctor in our group. 
---Original Message---
I appreciated this commentary and maybe I can add to it.  Right now there are reportedly over 300 EMR programs available and none of them interface(so much for meaningful exchange).  Every time the system needs to be altered to allow "exchange" lots of monies are spent.  These systems are mostly set up by businessmen not the people in the trenches who use them so docs are forced to adapt their documentation to fit a not so well designed program. This allows for a very lucrative future for the IT segment.  Your doctor's comment is correct too...If the stimulus program will give us $44,000 over five years I am sure the cost will be double.  Worse yet, when the system is set up there will be no going back as the "old" way will be nonexistent.  Medicine is an art form and not a cook book...........these black and white programs discourage the "art" component.  True that it is nice to computerize labs or radiology procedures but all these scanned items are just that, scanned items. The "art" is putting it together for the patient.  The other aspect is that these EMRs are designed to "justify" a level of service and are therefore programmed to be lengthy and redundant and sometimes difficult to find the purpose/the point of a problem. I cringe to think that we have lowered our value of health care in setting up a system that justifies costs of a service, store a lot of not so pertinent info and crimps the art of medicine. Doctor/patient interaction and trust between doctor and patient are the most cost effective way to practice medicine.  We are moving quickly to a system where that is eroded and where you will have big brother watching with  pay for performance.  Quality can only go down.  The number of primary care physicians can not address the needs and you will see those positions filled by less educated people who will be trained to follow a protocol.
A successful technique in controlling the masses is to abuse man's natural instinct to want to do the correct thing and drive man silly with rules, confusion and needless upset.  The general public is so confused that there is no strength left to pay attention with what really is taking place.  Look what is going on..............since when should the government be dictating how care is rendered.  Would you trust your doctor to manage your finances??  Why will you trust the government to manage your medical care and dictate your entitlement???

Sunday, July 12, 2009

EMRs - Part Of Universal Healthcare Scam

Even though the ruinous Cap & Trade bill has somewhat stalled in the Senate after passing the House 219 to 212 late last month BO has continued the undeterred pushing of the other elements of his overall Socialist program for America - Universal Healthcare, Comprehensive Immigration Reform, & the seating of Sonia Sotomayor on the Supreme Court as an Associate Justice. Of course all of these will be sprinkled with the threat of a second Stimulus, surcharge taxes on the wealthy, & an escalation of the union Card Check bill now that the detestable Arlen Specter has switched positions for a third time back to one of support.

The original Stimulus bill included $20 billion in incentive payments to doctors to digitalize medical records - mostly through Medicare & Medicaid. Below is validating evidence from one of the several doctors in our membership re the destructive nature to our healthcare of forcing Electronic Medical Records on doctors.

---Original Message---

It just occurred to me that it might be interesting for you to see how the current regime's programs can affect a small medical practice. As you know, B.O. wants electronic medical records. In fact, if you are up and running by 2010 and can show Medicare that you have an acceptable, functioning system you will receive a total of 44K in installments starting in 2011. I just got the numbers for my practice.

Interestingly, it will cost a little over 40K for the whole enchilada. So, if everything goes right and the government actually follows through on the money (extremely doubtful since they can't even pay me agreed amounts for services rendered at this point), which is from the Stimulus bill (The thought of dipping my mouth into that trough makes me sick.), it should be a wash financially for me, right? Ah, but now you get the law of unintended consequences. The yearly maintenance fee for this will be about 12K. This will undoubtedly go up with time as well.

So, you have these lofty statements about how computerization will save a tremendous amount of money and, in my case, it will push my overhead ever closer to my gross. Computers will not allow me to save a penny. It is an expensive piece of technology that I am being pushed into and I have to make a very difficult decision that could further jeopardize my business.

Another thing is the article in WSJ on Tuesday written by a doctor. You probably read it. That guy got it pretty much on the money. There was an article written last week by an academic physician that was ridiculous. The academician that doesn't live in a fee for service world, the guy from Tuesday works on the front lines. That's reality versus ivory tower fantasy.

Friday, July 3, 2009

BO Sums Up "Or Will It?"

Last week's message re the House vote on "Cap & Trade" entitled "Or Will It?" brought many follow-up action messages from members of our group such as:
1.  I called both his offices and sent e-mails.  Also sent everyone I know in Lance's district your list so they would know how HE voted!!
2.  Hope you don't mind, I posted your comments on my Facebook page. They are too good not to share.
3.  I saw to my dismay that my Congressman, Leonard Lance, voted with the Democrats in the House for this bill.  Do you have any idea why he would do that?  Is there anything I can or should be doing about that?
These are excellent comments & only with this type of fight will we hang on to what we've got.  They follow the words of President Eisenhower - "Politics ought to be the part-time profession of every citizen who would protect the rights and privileges of free people and who would preserve what is good and fruitful in our national heritage."
BO sums up the "Or Will It?" message with this one minute video - Better keep fighting.