A Koch addiction is a pre-existing condition

From Esquire:

‘Repeal and Go Fuck Yourself’ Is in Full Effect

The Graham-Cassidy bill is earning the nickname.

Lindsey Graham has really good healthcare that he definitely won’t lose, even if the moral catastrophe he’s calling a “reform” bill passes the Senate. Graham has cosponsored an Obamacare Repeal and Replace Plan with the impressively mendacious Bill Cassidy and two other Republican heartthrobs. It is somehow worse than the previous plans.

The bill would usher a number of shocking cruelties into law, not least the possibility that as many as 32 million Americans could lose health coverage. That’s 10 percent of the population.

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We don’t know for sure because Republicans are trying to force the bill through the Senate before its effects can be assessed by the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office. The bill is full of fun surprises, like the loophole it creates allowing insurers to deny people coverage for a series of basic medical treatments, including:

  • Pregnancy and maternity care
  • Prescription drugs
  • Mental health services
  • Reproductive health services, including birth control
  • Substance abuse treatment


These were among the 10 “Essential Benefits” that the Affordable Care Act mandated insurance companies had to provide to people who bought their insurance policies. That approach was based on the idea that people’s medical needs might include emergency room visits or prescription drugs, and that insurance companies shouldn’t be able to deny them coverage for things they might actually use. This concept is apparently unacceptable to Republicans—or at least to the donors paying their campaign bills. We can assume Republicans will just wish the millions of Americans suffering in the opioid epidemic the best of luck.


One estimate from the left-leaning Commonwealth Fund on Wednesday projected 15 to 18 million would lose insurance by next year, with 32 million off the rolls by 2026. Because Graham-Cassidy will, like the earlier bills, repeal the individual mandate, premiums could spike as much as 15 to 20 percent. Even if these constitute the worst-case scenario, the mediocre case wouldn’t be pretty. It would leave fewer Americans insured, and the ones still on the rolls could be paying more for patchy coverage that might not even have their back when their baby is born.

Actual doctors are almost unanimous in their opposition to this bill. As The Atlantic tells us, it’s very rare for physicians to agree as strongly on anything as they do on the belief that the Graham-Cassidy bill is absolute trash.


So why is Lindsey Graham, a Senate veteran normally known for shoveling money towards defense contractors, putting his neck out on this bill? Why are any of his colleagues giving it a moment’s consideration? It’s hard to say for sure. Certainly, Republicans are desperate to complete the final act of their grand, seven-year-long piece of performance art known as Repeal and Replace Obamacare. Having run on that magic incantation for four straight election cycles, they feel they must deliver for The Base—particularly the members eager to strike Barack Obama’s name from every history book for some reason.

But the real reason this bill has a chance is money. It is not merely the fact that the bill’s savage cuts to health coverage for some of the most vulnerable among us—the youngest, the oldest, the sickest, the poorest—open up billions of dollars of budget savings, which Republicans then plan to use in their grand attempt at tax reform. It’s that the real owners of the party, the donors and the fat cats, have demanded it. At least, that’s the intel The Guardian dug up at a Koch Brothers megadonor conference in June. The “piggy bank” holding a cascade of cash, much of it set to be filtered through dark money operations into Republican campaign coffers and the Super PACs that abet them, are closed until the rich guys get their tax cut.


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13 responses to “A Koch addiction is a pre-existing condition

  1. I really want to just keep a loop of your titles running at the bottom of my computer screen all day at work.

  2. I agree with Elyse that your titles are befitting the entitled that are the elected GOP crazies with wonderful health insurance. As you have written, they don’t need to worry one iota about losing any of it. They are all bastards well almost all of them. I’ll make an exception for the ones who will nix this stupid repeal and reform bill. It is beyond belief that each time a new one is presented, it only gets worse.

    • It took a terminal illness for McCain to do the right thing. I have no idea what it will take to make the others finally work for the people they are supposed to represent instead of their wealthy donors. I hope this ruins Lindseypoo and Cassidy’s careers. They probably thought they were cementing their positions, but they didn’t put Jimmy Kimmel into the equation. They fucked up bigly putting their names on this piece of shit. Instead of cementing their positions, they just put cement overshoes on, and it’s time to go for a little swim.

      • Hope you are correct about Lindseypoop and the Cassidy dastard. I can’t comprehend what is in the mind’s of the GOP members who are trying to destroy people and or their lives. One thing is that they are so eager to undue anything that a black president accomplished. And, they do out of their way to make total ass holes of themselves as they follow Trump who is suffering from dementia and a severe case of narcissism coupled with being a bull in a china cabinet.

  3. The irresistible force of the Kochroaches and their money has collided with the immovable object of Republican factionalism and incompetence. Fortunately, once again, the latter prevailed. These people are so divided and intractable that they can’t get anything done even under duress.

    Democrats can get things done because we don’t have this all-or-nothing attitude. Obamacare wasn’t everything we wanted, but it was something, and we passed it in the hope that we could build on it later and help even more people. Graham-Cassidy wasn’t everything Rand Paul wanted, but it would have taken away insurance from 32 million people, and if it had passed, he could have hoped to build on it later and hurt even more people. But he doesn’t seem to think that way.

    As for the Kochroaches, what are they going to do, cut off the donation money and let the Democrats win even more seats to punish the Republicans? Well, maybe they will. We can hope.

    By the way, Satan may sue you for defamation for associating his likeness with these guys.

    • Infidel, I agree with you 100%. It drives me crazy that the talking heads keep wanting to turn the conversation over to the Democrats and how they can’t seem to get a foothold while the Rethugs are walking around and can’t tell their asses from their elbows. I don’t know if that’s because they are divided or because they are all so greedy and so politically ambitious that they refuse to compromise on anything. Or maybe they have different corporate or billionaire donors they have to please, and they disagree. Whatever the case, the right side of the aisle looks like a 3 Stooges convention.

      This is what really struck me in your comment:

      Democrats can get things done because we don’t have this all-or-nothing attitude.

      I immediately thought of the Dreamers who were booing Nancy Pelosi and refusing to allow her to speak. Nancy and Chuck saved the DACA kids, but that wasn’t good enough for some. I had a Twitter argument with some person (or maybe a bot?) after I remarked that I couldn’t understand why they would boo someone who is on their side. The answer was that the Dreamers are angry that everyone here who is undocumented is not safe from deportation. I answered that, if you are starving, and someone gives you half a sandwich, don’t refuse it, because you want the whole thing. That’s when I was accused of using a King Solomon argument, and that you can’t split a Dreamer in half. At that point, I knew I was dealing with an idiot. I explained that it’s better to eat the fucking sandwich and live to fight another day instead of starving to death, because you want everything all at once. Then I said I would no longer spend my time arguing with someone who can’t understand a metaphor. My point is, though, is that government works in small steps and in leaps and bounds, and sometimes you have to be patient and not expect everything you want overnight. I think we will eventually get to health care for all, but demanding single payer right now and refusing any other smaller steps is self-defeating. Same thing for DACA kids and their parents. We took one step forward in a very hostile Rethug environment. Celebrate that, eat the fucking half a sandwich and keep fighting.

      Haven’t you ever heard the expression Give the Devil his due? I thought he would be proud of one of his most successful works.

      • Those are good examples, and worthy of a post in their own right, really.

        I do understand the frustration and impatience. People have died since 2009 who would have lived if we could have established universal coverage that year. But it simply wasn’t politically possible. The ACA we did get saved many would would have died without it. It was what was doable at the time, and it was a step toward the universal coverage we will eventually have (as every other advanced nation already does).

        The same principle applies over longer time-scales. Gay people in 1920 deserved the right to marry just as much as gay people today do, but it would have been madness to fight for gay marriage at that time — it would have been utterly impossible to achieve it. The culture was not ready. Far more sensible to fight for getting women the vote, which was achievable then and was, in fact, achieved. Many times I’ve held my tongue and refrained from arguing for causes with are equally just but simply cannot be advanced now — the culture is not ready yet. Better to put our energies into those struggles where we have a real chance of winning and doing away with at least some injustices. One has to take the long view. This is all part of a protracted struggle which has been going on for many centuries and has a ways to go yet. Those half sandwiches add up over time.

        • Marriage equality seemed to happen in a blink of an eye, but it really took decades. Same thing for gays in the military. People fault Clinton for DADT, but there is no way anything more than that would have been accepted at the time. People like to look at the past through today’s lens, so they are intolerant of what seems today like foot-dragging in the past and intolerant of incremental changes now. Whether we like it or not, the small red states have way too much power, and until that is changed, progress is going to be really slow.

      • chezmoi

        This is why, in spite of wishing for universal coverage with all my heart, and loving the fact that the majority of public opinion is finally in agreement, I heartily support the bipartisan efforts of Murray and Alexander’s plan to stabilize the existing ACA and protect the system as it stands until we can work out something better. Some of us can walk and eat peanut butter out of the jar at the same time.

        • You can walk and eat peanut butter at the same time? I’m really impressed!!

          I agree with you totally, Chezmoi. Those who demand all or nothing usually wind up with nothing.

          • chezmoi

            But of course! When it comes to peanut butter – or chocolate – I can eat either one while doing all kinds of things.

            I wish you had a like button for your wonderful blog entries. I could click on it while spooning in calories.

            • I have the best video of my dog and my sister’s dogs eating peanut butter. I wish I could post it here. Nothing more hilarious than doggies trying to get PB off the roofs of their mouths. It’s torture for the enjoyment of their humans, but it’s torture that they love.