Joy Reid to the State of Jefferson: Get Over Yourself

Thank you for this Ms Reid! (Via Twitter, duh)

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I think what Ms. Reid, a MSNBC host, misses is this; most people in Northern California, including Humboldt are struggling, especially working people who don’t own their own businesses and are dependent on their wages to make a living. In this reality, their private sector bosses, who’d like to be honored as Job Creators (or sometimes land owners – See Supervisor Bohn and Fennel’s version of the General Plan Update Guiding Principles) are a working person’s lifeline to a wage – living or not.

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Borders are always so important to Conservative politics.  Circa 1941?  Image from this link.  More about what these demonstrations here

So will this thread help dissuade Jeffersoners or help them to understand that the politics of their bosses may be exactly what is helping to create their problems in the first place? Only if they could take a step back and see that people like Joy Reid or a Humboldt liberal who grows arugula are fighting against tendencies of the people they are told to honor to focus almost entirely on their own profits rather than externalities such as the worker’s lives, maybe then these workers would be able to hear or understand the contradictions in the stories they are being told.

But that won’t happen, and the reasons why are exactly those stories. The bad guy or gal in that story are the urban liberal elites and their benefactors who vote for them because of the governmental hand outs they are given. The good guy is the boss (preferred nomenclature is Job Creator) they know they have to honor by being a hard and dependable worker.

If we understand this relationship between employer and employee in rural America, including how dependent and desperate the employee can be, so much more makes sense about Republican politics. I think Ms. Reid’s argument misses this point and it will ultimately serve to heighten the divide rather than help fix it by grouping rural employers and employees into one group without making this distinction. Still it had to be said and I’m glad she too the time to react to the NYT article.

(Note:  These opinions are informed by my experience working for a couple of private sector employers in Humboldt and by my understanding of what made the white Confederate soldier who wasn’t wealthy enough to own slaves, fight so fiercely for the Confederate cause.)


example of the Republican use of the dependency on employment:

Many Republican ads and much of their politics against the ACA centered on the loss of one’s doctor through their employer’s insurance. What they didn’t talk about was those workers who may be unemployed or wish to have the freedom to move from one employer to another, which became possible under a market-place plan from Covered CA.
Here is business owner Judy Hodgson’s experience with the ACA as she had to wean business off of the employer-based insurance which was a perk to her employees as she had once paid 100% of the premiums for her workers.

From her piece in this week’s Journal:

For many of our 26 years in business, we paid 100 percent of the premiums for our employees for a higher deductible, medium-grade silver plan. The ACA promised direct subsidies to small businesses (fewer than 25 employees) for four years in the form of tax credits — basically taxes we didn’t have to pay. The ACA delivered. Each year we received up to $8,000 to help pay premiums for the following year.

I remember being concerned about what would happen in four years when those subsidies went away. Originally there was talk about a direct “government option” if we couldn’t afford premiums but that never materialized.

In 2015, the year the subsidies went away, was also the year that our premium estimate went up a whopping 42 percent, which I reported to Congressman Jared Huffman’s office. It wasn’t a straight, across-the-board increase; some of it was due to employees getting older. It was an increase we could not afford and neither could our employees because the each of them paid for their families. One employee’s spouse was looking at an additional $500 a month because he was 62.


 

the nyt article in question:

From this article, this infographic:

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Republican(s Don’t)Care | CA-21

I don’t believe the American Health Care Act (AHCA =House verision of the Affordable Care Act repeal) or the Better Care Reconciliation Act (BCRA =Senate version) has much to do with Donald Trump at all. He now understands health care for all is complicated in our economy but it is something government has (at the very least) an obligation to try to meet.

No, whatever passes the three branches of government under Republican control will be a Republican act. And if you listen to them, the reasoning for this is it will give our citizens more choice and reduce premium costs.

But here is the thing, that is demonstrably not true. It’s wishful hoping. Here is an infographic from familiesusa.org that illustrates those states that expanded and their increase in roles of the insured due to Medicaid and those states that didn’t and the numbers of potentially eligible that are likely to remain uninsured.

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And although it is not incredibly clear in that infographic as to whom is most affected by the lack of expansion, there is this (From The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation) that might help drive the message home.

Lookit, if you are one of seven people who read this blog, I think you know my feelings about how important race is to the themes and policies of our national politics. This graph may be one of the most illustrative of (what I feel is) that reality.

So, no, it isn’t about choice, it is about reducing the size and scope of the federal government. I understand no Republican can say that at this point in time as you try to pass the BHCA or AHCA, so let me say it for you.

Because as all of us paying attention know that real choice would have been to vote in the public option with the ACA. And we know what the results of that choice would have been, which is why Republicans (and a couple of Democrats) couldn’t let it pass.


In other news, there is this…

From a tweet by Mike Levin, an environmental lawyer who has stepped up to run against Darrell Issa of CA-49, here is the current margin in those Congressional Districts where the Republican member is vulnerable.

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Top among these is CA-21 where David Valadao last won election in 2016. Remember the conservative PAC asked us to let us know what we think about his vote to decimate the ACA? I agree with them, Californians should.

Yes, Representative Valadao won by 13 points in 2016, but Hillary Clinton carried the District (centered on Kings County in the Central Valley) by 15 points and Democrats in the district out-register Republicans 46% to 29%.

I honestly wish that Humboldt or Californian Republicans would be on board with this. The evidence is clear, we can insure more people with the ACA AND it set up to work with moving people into gainful employment. But Republicans are not stepping up and standing up for what could be argued is a conservative approach to universal health care, therefore, I think we as a people have to stand up against them. It can start with CA-21 and finding a candidate who can thank David Valadao for his work against the ACA with an extended vacation.


More on the CA House delegation’s vote on the AHCA here.  It’s pretty simple really – all Dems were forit all Reps aginit.

Video: From the Party of Lincoln to Trump

This is a great, short, high-production-value video by Vox.  This 7 minute video is well worth your time.  It’s from July, so many of you may have seen it already.

 

And here is more Republican history in 13 maps, also by Vox.