Friday, March 17, 2017

Unspeakable Realities Block Universal Health Coverage In The US

Mar 13, 2017 @ 02:02 PM

A recovering Republican

Opinions expressed by Forbes Contributors are their own.

forbes
GENEVA, OH - OCTOBER 27: Supporters listen to Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump speak at a campaign rally.(Photo by Jeff Swensen/Getty Images)

Election 2016 has prompted a wave of head-scratching on the left. Counties Trump won by staggering margins will be among the hardest hit by the repeal of the Affordable Care Act. Millions of white voters who supported Donald Trump stand to lose their access to health coverage because of their vote.

Individual profiles of Trump voters feed this baffling narrative. A Washington Post story described the experience of Clyde Graham, a long-unemployed coal worker who depends on the ACA for access to health care. He voted for Trump knowing it might cost him his health insurance out of his hope of capturing the great white unicorn – a new job in the mines. His stance is not unusual.

Why are economically struggling blue collar voters rejecting a party that offers to expand public safety net programs? The reality is that the bulk of needy white voters are not interested in the public safety net. They want to restore their access to an older safety net, one much more generous, dignified, and stable than the public system – the one most well-employed voters still enjoy.

When it seems like people are voting against their interests, I have probably failed to understand their interests. We cannot begin to understand Election 2016 until we acknowledge the power and reach of socialism for white people.

Americans with good jobs live in a socialist welfare state more generous, cushioned and expensive to the public than any in Europe. Like a European system, we pool our resources to share the burden of catastrophic expenses, but unlike European models, our approach doesn’t cover everyone.

Like most of my neighbors I have a good job in the private sector. Ask my neighbors about the cost of the welfare programs they enjoy and you will be greeted by baffled stares. All that we have is “earned” and we perceive no need for government support. Nevertheless, taxpayers fund our retirement saving, health insurance, primary, secondary, and advanced education, daycare, commuter costs, and even our mortgages at a staggering public cost. Socialism for white people is all-enveloping, benevolent, invisible, and insulated by the nasty, deceptive notion that we have earned our benefits by our own hand.

My family’s generous health insurance costs about $20,000 a year, of which we pay only $4,000 in premiums. The rest is subsidized by taxpayers. You read that right. Like virtually everyone else on my block who isn’t old enough for Medicare or employed by the government, my family is covered by private health insurance subsidized by taxpayers at a stupendous public cost. Well over 90% of white households earning over the white median income (about $75,000) carried health insurance even before the Affordable Care Act. White socialism is nice if you can get it.

Companies can deduct the cost of their employees’ health insurance while employees are not required to report that benefit as income. That results in roughly a $400 billion annual transfer of funds from state and federal treasuries to insurers to provide coverage for the Americans least in need of assistance. This is one of the defining features of white socialism, the most generous benefits go to those who are best suited to provide for themselves. Those benefits are not limited to health care.

When I buy a house for my family, or a vacation home, the interest I pay on the mortgage is deductible up to a million dollars of debt. That costs the treasury $70 billion a year, about what we spend to fund the food stamp program. My private retirement savings are also tax deductible, diverting another $75 billion from government revenues. Other tax preferences carve out special treatment for child care expenses, college savings, commuter costs (your suburban tax credit), local taxes, and other exemptions.

By funding government programs with tax credits and deductions rather than spending, we have created an enormous social safety net that grows ever more generous as household incomes rise. It is important to note, though, that you need not be wealthy to participate. All you need to gain access to socialism for white people is a good corporate or government job. That fact helps explain how this welfare system took shape sixty years ago, why it was originally (and still overwhelmingly) white, and why white Rust Belt voters showed far more enthusiasm for Donald Trump than for Bernie Sanders. White voters are not interested in democratic socialism. They want to restore their access to a more generous and dignified program of white socialism.

In the years after World War II, the western democracies that had not already done so adopted universal social safety net programs. These included health care, retirement and other benefits. President Truman introduced his plan for universal health coverage in 1945. It would have worked much like Social Security, imposing a tax to fund a universal insurance pool. His plan went nowhere.

Instead, nine years later Congress laid the foundations of the social welfare system we enjoy today. They rejected Truman’s idea of universal private coverage in favor of a program controlled by employers while publicly funded through tax breaks. This plan gave corporations new leverage in negotiating with unions, handing the companies a publicly-financed benefit they could distribute at their discretion.

No one stated their intention to create a social welfare program for white people, specifically white men, but they didn’t need to. By handing control to employers at a time when virtually every good paying job was reserved for white men the program silently accomplished that goal.

White socialism played a vital political role, as blue collar factory workers and executives all pooled their resources for mutual support and protection, binding them together culturally and politically. Higher income workers certainly benefited more, but almost all the benefits of this system from health care to pensions originally accrued to white families through their male breadwinners. Blue collar or white collar, their fates were largely united by their racial identity and employment status.

Until the decades after the Civil Rights Acts, very few women or minorities gained direct access to this system. Unsurprisingly, this was the era in which white attitudes about the social safety net and the Democratic Party began to pivot. Thanks to this silent racial legacy, socialism for white people retains its disproportionately white character, though that has weakened. Racial boundaries are now less explicit and more permeable, but still today white families are twice as likely as African-Americans to have access to private health insurance. Two thirds of white children are covered by private health insurance, while barely over one third of black children enjoy this benefit.

White socialism has had a stark impact on the rest of the social safety net, creating a two-tiered system. Visit a county hospital to witness an example. American socialism for “everyone else” is marked by crowded conditions, neglected facilities, professionalism compromised by political patronage, and long waits for care. Fall outside the comfortable bubble of white socialism, and one faces a world of frightening indifference.

When Democrats respond to job losses with an offer to expand the public safety net, blue collar voters cringe and rebel. They are not remotely interested in sharing the public social safety net experienced by minority groups and the poorest white families. Meanwhile well-employed and affluent voters, ensconced in their system of white socialism, leverage all the power at their disposal to block any dilution of their expensive public welfare benefits. Something has to break.

We may one day recognize that we are all “in it together” and find ways to build a more stable, sensible welfare system. That will not happen unless we acknowledge the painful and sometimes embarrassing legacy that brought us to this place. Absent that reckoning, unspoken realities will continue to warp our political calculations, frustrating our best hopes and stunting our potential.
Chris Ladd, former GOP Precinct Committeeman, author of The Politics of Crazy and creator of PoliticalOrphans.

Source: forbes

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Thursday, March 16, 2017

Being Indian in Trump’s America

By Amitava Kumar
March 15, 2017
newyorker

Sunayana Dumala at the funeral of her husband, Srinivas Kuchibhotla, an Indian engineer who was murdered last month as part of a hate crime in Kansas.PHOTOGRAPH BY NOAH SEELAM / AFP / GETTY

On a September evening in 1987, Navroze Mody, a thirty-year-old Indian man living in Jersey City, went for drinks at the Gold Coast Café, in Hoboken. Later that night, after he left the bar, he was accosted on the street by a group of about a dozen youths and severely beaten. Mody died from his injuries four days later. There had been other attacks on Indians in the area at that time, several of them brutal, many of them carried out by a group that called itself the Dotbusters—the name a reference to the bindi worn by Hindu women on their foreheads. Earlier that year, a local newspaper had published a handwritten letter from the Dotbusters: “We will go to any extreme to get Indians to move out of Jersey City. If I’m walking down the street and I see a Hindu and the setting is right, I will hit him or her.”

When I first read about the attack on Mody, I had only recently arrived in the United States. I was a young graduate student at Syracuse University then, and although the news alarmed me I wasn’t fearful. In those days, distances felt real: an event unfolding in a city more than two hundred miles away seemed remote, even in the imagination. I might have worried for my mother and sisters, who wore bindis, but they were safe, in India. Whatever was happening in Jersey City, in other words, couldn’t affect the sense that I and my expat friends had of our role in this country. The desire for advancement often breeds an apolitical attitude among immigrants, a desire not to rock the boat, to be allowed to pass unnoticed. Since 1965, when Lyndon B. Johnson signed the Immigration and Nationality Act, abolishing the racist quotas of the nineteen-twenties, our compatriots had been bringing their professional skills to America. If we didn’t hope to be welcomed, we at least expected to be benignly ignored.

A lot has happened in the long interregnum. Indian-Americans have the highest median income of any ethnic group in the United States. There is a greater visibility now of Indians on American streets, and also of Indian food and culture. I’ve seen the elephant-headed deity Ganesha displayed all over America, in art museums, restaurants, yoga centers, and shops, on T-shirts and tote bags. The bindi isn’t the bull’s-eye it once was. But the bigotry, as we have witnessed in 2017, has not gone away. In early February, an Indian man in Peyton, Colorado, awoke to find his house egged, smeared with dog feces, and vandalized with racist slogans. Two weeks later, at a bar in Olathe, Kansas, a U.S. Navy veteran named Adam Purinton allegedly opened fire on two Indian patrons. Srinivas Kuchibhotla, a thirty-two-year-old aviation engineer, was killed; his colleague Alok Madasani survived. Ten days later, a Sikh man was attacked outside his home in Kent, Washington, while washing his car. A white man wearing a mask told him to go back to his country, then shot him in the arm. Soon after that, as if to confirm that Indians across the country were now on notice, an unsettling video began to circulate online. Originally posted in August by a sixty-six-year-old computer programmer named Steve Pushor, it shows a crowded park in Columbus, Ohio. As the camera pans past immigrant parents playing with their children, Pushor says, in voice-over, “The Indian crowd has ravished the Midwest.”

The racist’s calling card is ignorance: he cannot discriminate (if that is the right word) between nationalities and religions, between Indians and Saudis and Egyptians, Hindus and Muslims and Sikhs. One of the first hate crimes to take place in the days following 9/11 was the murder of Balbir Singh Sodhi, a Sikh gas-station owner in Mesa, Arizona. The killer probably thought that Sodhi, with his turban and beard, was Muslim; he had told his friends that he was “going to go out and shoot some towelheads.” This year’s attacks bear some of the same hallmarks. Purinton reportedly shouted “Get out of my country!” before firing on the men from India, who he believed were from Iran. And last Friday a white man in Florida set fire to an Indian-owned convenience store because, he told police, it didn’t carry his brand of orange juice and he wished to “run the Arabs out of our country.” We, the mistaken people.

The incitement sixteen years ago was 9/11. Today it is Donald Trump. The President’s nationalistic rhetoric and scapegoating of racial others, not to mention his habitual reliance on unverified information, have sown panic among immigrants. I’ve often asked myself lately whether I’ve been right to suspect that people were looking at me differently on the street, at airports, or in elevators. Whenever a stranger has been kind to me, I have almost wanted to weep in gratitude. Unlike when I first arrived here, distance no longer offers any reprieve from these feelings. The Internet delivers ugly fragments of report and rumor throughout the day, and with them a sense of nearly constant intimacy with violence.

Soon after Kuchibhotla’s murder, a commentator in India pointed out a grave irony: in the run-up to the 2016 election, a number of right-leaning American Hindus supported Trump’s candidacy, not only with donations but also with elaborate prayer ceremonies to propitiate the gods. The more conservative of these people—those who backed the rise of a hypernationalist Hindutva ideology in India through the nineties—have made common cause with American conservatives, who share their view of Islam as the enemy. Trump’s fear-mongering found a ready echo in the ultra-right-Hindu heart. But to the homegrown racists emboldened by that same fear-mongering, the Hindu-G.O.P. alliance makes no difference. Purinton’s question for Kuchibhotla and Madasani in the bar in Kansas was not whether they were Muslim but whether they were in the country illegally. (They weren’t.) A week later, in a Facebook post, Kuchibhotla’s widow framed the question as Purinton perhaps really meant it: “Do we belong here?” This week, a possible answer came from Sean Spicer, the White House press secretary, when an Indian-American woman confronted him at an Apple store. “It’s such a great country that allows you to be here,” Spicer told her. His interlocutor was an American citizen, but that didn’t seem to register. (Not white, not quite.)

An Indian man in the Midwest once told me that, every time an American shakes his hand and says, “I love Indian food,” he wants to respond, “I thank you on behalf of Indian food.” He might just as well thank the American on behalf of—take your pick—spelling bees, lazy “Slumdog Millionaire” references, yoga and chai lattes, motels, software moguls, Bollywood-style weddings, doctors and taxi drivers, henna, Nobel laureates, comedians, the baffling wisdom of Deepak Chopra, and Mahatma Gandhi. But perhaps it’s time he reminded the American of something, too. The man who shot Gandhi, in 1948, was neither Muslim nor Sikh nor a foreigner. He was a disgruntled member of the majority, like Purinton, and had once belonged to India’s most nationalistic party—the same party that, just today, told Indians in the United States to stop worrying for their safety.

Amitava Kumar is a writer and journalist who teaches at Vassar College. His latest book, “Immigrant, Montana: A Novel,” is forthcoming from Knopf.

Source: newyorker

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Wednesday, March 15, 2017

The Curious Case of Gurmehar Kaur

 smhoaxslayer 
Characters: @mehartweets @RandeepHooda @virendersehwag @Voice_Of_Ram

What was & what wasn’t.
Do read till the end before getting offended & using your mother tongue.

So what are the scenes you saw and what did u miss ?

Did you hear the name “Gurmehar Kaur’ in 2016 ?
No, You came to know about her few days back because of Virendra Sehwag & Randeep Hooda.
And how you may ask ? She was holding a placard with “Pakistan did not kill my dad, War Killed him”.

Now being Indian, Pakistan is such a despicable name to all of us, that our blood boils, we jump out of bed, log on to facebook, tweet fiercely with anger. But do we ever hold our breath and think over what did we receive on whatsapp is complete truth ? No, because these hatred & it’s misuse is the reason of our blindness.

So we are stuck to the first part only “Pakistan did not kill” & the anger is poured on social media with filthiest swear words, rape threats to sarcastic output, jokes, images all over the net.
Well, here it all got messed up, chaos, full media TRP.

May be you were stuck in traffic, you missed the best part of the movie my friend. She despised Pakistan more than us, because we didn’t loose anyone, she did.

That part, that particular placard which started all of this was not her words but her mother’s.
The original unedited Video which you missed:

What Daughter of a Martyr said.





Video Timeline –
00:52 “I also remember how much I used to hate Pakistan & Pakistanis because they killed my dad”
01.20 “My mother held me back and made me understand”
01.29 “Pakistan did not kill my dad, War Killed him”

I salute the guy who found that particular placard, recognized it’s potential of misuse & milked it well. That guy is the director and deserves an Oscar. Damien Chazelle gave us only a musical while this one is full of violence, emotion, comedy & tragedy.

Now, if that statement is of last year’s video, why is it being used now ?
Simply because this time Gurmehar herself dared & stated on placard “I’m not afraid of ABVP” and so the movie begun.

I couldn’t find if she somewhere supported Umar Khalid, all was her stand against ABVP who protested against Umar Khalid which also is OK but using violence, beating up teachers whom our culture equates to our parents is not in good taste. And because of this Gurmehar dared to stand.

If Umar Khalid is Anti National, and she is supporting him, I certainly will despise too, but this was nowhere to be found.

Just standing against ABVP doesn’t prove her to be supporting Umar Khalid. You or me hating Pakistan doesn’t make us China supporters.

The video was about peace. Is this wish for peace so gross and sickening, so Anti National ?

Haven’t our country been trying for peace forever?
Samjhauta Express in 1976, Delhi Lahore Bus in 1999 in which Vajpayee ji himself travelled. (Source: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Delhi–Lahore_Bus)
Modi ji paid sudden visit to Nawaz Sharif on his Birthday (Source: http://indianexpress.com/article/india/india-news-india/pm-modi-lands-in-lahore-on-a-surprise-visit-meets-pak-pm-nawaz-sharif/)

So why does this girl asking for the same makes her Anti National ?

Let’s checkout the Characters:

Gurmehar Kaur:
She is daughter of Martyr Captain Mandeep Singh. When Ram approached her with this concept, she liked and volunteered. Believing in that idea she repeated the same in Ramdas College chaos. She dared.

Copy Paste of what she told me in chat-
I’m not from Canada
I don’t have petrol pumps
I’m extremely clear
I’m a national level athlete
I scored extremely well
My teachers form LSR came out in my support for a reason

Ram Subramanian:
He is a creative guy. Last year he ran a campaign “Profile for peace” (Source: http://m.timesofindia.com/india/Peace-call-goes-viral-I-am-an-Indian-I-dont-hate-Pakistan/articleshow/49522993.cms)
This campaign solely belongs to him where Gurmehar Kaur was a volunteer only.

It was his view & idea to achieve peace between Hindustan & Pakistan through talks instead of resorting to war, although it didn’t give any solid solution. With so many of our soldiers dying on border, civilians via terrorism, can this be solved merely by talks ?

Virender Shewag:
As explained earlier, that particular placard boils our patriotism harmone, and I believe same happend with Shewag. He didn’t see the video, he saw only that placard and out of anger he used his usual witty feedback. A placard for a placard makes whole country blind.

If he did see the video, then it’s quite shameful.
And if the logic thrown to twist the facts is to be followed than you may apply the media story that Shewag earns through tweets. (Source: http://zeenews.india.com/cricket/virender-sehwag-says-he-has-earned-around-rs-30-lakh-through-his-tweets-in-last-six-months_1965679.html)
Further using same logic, his love for pakistan also defies his tweet (Source: https://youtu.be/Lt5DHnPZKUE)

Randeep Hooda:
My basic observation is he too also fell for half truth, just one placard of Gurmehar, countered by Sehwag sarcasm and Randeep also quoted it. Didn’t see the video or understood the meaning.
But following their logic again, Randeep’s mother Asha Hooda is a BJP politician, to which ABVP relates. (Source: http://m.imdb.com/name/nm0393535/bio)

Check out his few peaceful tweets:
1. https://mobile.twitter.com/RandeepHooda/status/499886930725982208
2. https://twitter.com/RandeepHooda/status/585797953719140352
3. https://twitter.com/RandeepHooda/status/585781975601917953

Now that the movie is about to end, let’s dwell into the climax, the half Truth, half Lie news you received on WhatsApp which actually now is the only source of information for people still looking for GPS Nano Chip by holding 2000 Note against sun.

This message claims few points.
1. This all was done by Arvind Kejriwal.
No, this was Ram Subramanian’s campaign. But yes Gurmehar Kaur and Ram Subramanian both do support AAP. About the photo with AAP leaders, not credible for this particular script. People take selfie or photos many famous personalities.

2. Gurmehar holds a Canadian Passport.
No, I had a chat with her and she said she never had been to Canada, so certainly not Canadian Passport.

3.Martyr Captain Mandeep Singh didn’t die in Kargil War.
True, he unfortunately died at an HQ under Pakistani terrorist’s attack. As Gurmehar told me, it was 10 days after official closure of Kargil War. (Source: http://www.merasangeet.com/india/archives-remembering-martyr-capt-mandeep-singh/ Not credible though)

I’m not giving out any verdict here, layed the cards in front of you, showed you what you missed, another side of the coin.

Baaki aapki marji. Aapka din shubh rahe. Jai Hind – facebook.com/SMHoaxSlayer

PS: It’s all because of half statement. https://www.facebook.com/SMHoaxSlayer/photos/a.147357335599672.1073741828.140690692933003/429841777351225/?type=3
 
Source: SMHoaxSlayer

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Tuesday, March 07, 2017

శ్రీ కౌముది మార్చి 2017

The Slave Who Outwitted George Washington

Longreads
The Washington Family, by Edward Savage, c. 1789 / Wikimedia

"For most black women who toiled as domestic slaves or servants, their bodies were broken, and their time was never their own."
                                                .......

"Washington wrote that if his slaves knew that they had a right to freedom, it would ‘make them insolent in the State of Slavery."
                                                .......

"If Judge ever believed that her close and intimate responsibilities for her owner yielded preferential treatment, she now understood better."
                                                .......

Source read: longreads


In Search of the Slave Who Defied George Washington

The New York Times
Erica Armstrong Dunbar, the author of “Never Caught: The Washingtons’ Relentless Pursuit of Their Runaway Slave, Ona Judge,” at George Washington’s estate in Mount Vernon, Va. 
Credit Justin T. Gellerson for The New York Times

Source read: nytimes


Ona Judge Staines, the Fugitive Slave Who Outwitted George Washington

newenglandhistoricalsociety
Washington and His Slaves

Source read: newenglandhistoricalsociety

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