Worldly Talk

Civil discussion and debate on real world events and issues.

Politics Permanently Broken?

Originally Posted by Squeak View Post
The 'compromise' isn't really much of a compromise, as it simply shifts the cost onto the insurance companies -- without taking the onus off of the catholic hospitals to provide something that fundamentally disagrees with the tenets of the institution (who will still be required to provide the birth control for free).
I have less than no sympathy for the Catholic hospitals, or for the male Catholic hierarchy who are simply using this issue as an excuse to shriek like stuck pigs.

20 states already have required contraceptive coverage -- which is already paid by several major Catholic hospitals and universities -- and, mysteriously, the world has not yet ended. Moreover, plenty of existing insurance programs include contraception with a copayment rather than for free... but a copayment is still subsidized by insurance, so the same argument would apply, except that it hasn't been made. This position has no logic, only vitriol.

Moreover, paying for insurance is not the same as paying for contraceptives. You're arguing that having a religious affiliate pay for insurance which might be used by some employees for birth control is a violation of that religion's rights. That is such a tenuous and indirect connection as to be ridiculous. Justice Scalia, hardly a liberal darling, has already written that religious groups engaging in the secular marketplace must be bound by secular labor laws.

What, should we allow religious affiliates to flagrantly violate OSHA guidelines for safe workplaces, or food-safety guidelines, or any of a host of other laws, purely because of religion? Just how much religious involvement does a place have to have in order to acquire a religious exemption from any pesky regulation? Can I just prefix "Baptist" to the second word in "Joe's Garage" and suddenly escape governmental oversight?

A similar story is HERE , where a preschooler was told she needed to eat a school provided lunch because hers wasn't healthy enough. Another example of the intrusive, almost Orwellian involvement of government in the choices that individuals make.
One story indicates a government conspiracy? That's more than a slight stretch. In a nation of 310 million, you're always going to get an idiot inspector or two. But do I damn an entire banking conglomerate because of the actions of a single teller? Hardly.

There are many examples of strong left or right leaning individuals have been elected.
After Nixon/Ford - Jimmy Carter was elected (very left wing)
After Carter - Ronald Reagan was elected (very right wing)
After W Bush - Obama was elected (who was ranked as the most liberal senator in 2007)

I would also say that while Santorum is definitely conservative, he is FAR from hyper-conservative by US standards.
Carter was "very left wing"? Hardly! Why did Kennedy mount a primary challenge, then?

Reagan was "very right wing"? Perhaps by the standards of the 1980s. By today's increasingly extreme standards, he's practically a moderate.

"The most liberal senator" ploy is such a clear canard that I'm amazed you dare to still use it. Conservative groups have become unbelievably clever in compiling metrics and massaging statistics in order to anoint any convenient Democrat as "the most liberal." Of course, the standards are different every time, purely in order to produce a pre-determined outcome. But that's called propaganda, not legitimate measurement or information.

And if Santorum is "FAR from hyper-conservative," then I'm pretty sure no rational person wants to meet the genuine article. Denying evolution and global climate change, opposing not only abortion but also contraception, calling for secular laws to be based on religious guidelines, disparaging women in the military or the civilian workplace, being so relentlessly homophobic as to provoke one of the most successful examples of Google-bombing? What more does the man need before he can be unanimously acknowledged as an ultra-partisan hack?

Conservatives wouldn't get bashed if they didn't continue to use such sloppy, haphazard rhetoric, at clear variance with actual reality.

technically one could argue that the Republican party is in the pocket of foreign interests, since their biggest support comes from Fox News, which is primarilly owned by an Australian and an Arab (Rupert Murdoch & Prince Alwaleed bin Talal al-Saud)

Originally Posted by Squeak View Post
The birth control thing had absolutely nothing to do with sexual freedom for women. It had to do with a religious affiliate being MANDATED to not only supply but pay for birth control.
Everything involving birth control has everything to do with sexual freedom for women. Effective contraception is the core, primary reason why women have sexual freedom, and taking the first away takes the second away.

You see a mandate to violate an employer's religious beliefs, I see a mandate to force an employer not to violate an employee's religious beliefs.

Originally Posted by Squeak
As far as I understand, there hasn't been any difficulty getting birth control in the US.
Apparently, you've never heard of women living in poverty.

Originally Posted by dauphinous View Post
Apparently, you've never heard of women living in poverty.
You can get effective birth control pills for 15 to 50 dollars for a month supply. Less if you go to clinics like Planned Parenthood.

Which means what when you have a woman and 3 kids living on $200 a month? that you should add a 4th kid?

more realistically, since we are talking about an employer mandate, is the $50 a month version for someone earning minimum wage- about $1364 a month. which means 3.6% of their income to avoid having more children... assuming that the $50 birth control is available without insurance to help pay for it...

also they do require a prescription- how much will she have to pay out of pocket for a Drs. visit about birth control if that isn't covered?

Yes, if you go to the clinics like Planned Parenthood that Republican politicians have been trying passionately to defund. If you live near one - they are not everywhere, we don't even have one here in the second largest city in New England. And have the money to spare for it. That is the cost per pack (13 packs to a year), plus the annual exam to get the prescription. Women living in poverty shockingly may not be able to afford that. Because, you know, the poverty thing. Food or birth control? Hmm....

Still, this is off topic.

I maintain that US politics look worse right now than it really is.

Originally Posted by silveroak View Post
While the Republicans are off on a tangent claiming major employers like hospitals who happen to have a religious affiliation should be exempted from providing their employees with any form of health care that might have to do with reproduction or lady parts.
I consider that part as ideal example how a mundane subject was turned an another front in ideological war. Maybe as usual word "sex" attracts so much attention from BOTH sides. From practical reasons there is not much point here for any insurance - most people during the most of their life would use contraception. (regardless what Roman Catholic Church might claim) The usual argument that you can suddenly get ill and need heavy spending is not valid, there would be roughly similar spending during many years. The whole job of insurance company would be to calculate your annual spending on contraception, add cost of their paperwork, add their profit margin and adequately increase your premiums. So rather poor offer for a person insured.

Wait, wait! Are we talking about employees of a Catholic owned institution or are we talking about people at the absolute bottom of the scale economically?

You're trying to justify legislation of how these institutions deal with their employees with the situation of people who are in poverty and not working there anyway? How does that even make sense?

Originally Posted by dauphinous View Post
No, that's unrelated. Squeak asserted he'd never heard of women having trouble getting contraception.

Pages 5 and 6 are probably the most relevant that that particular point.

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