Michigan Democrat and chairman of the Judiciary committee, John Conyers, is planning to introduce a bill called HR 676. This simple plan would create a version of Medicare where every US citizen is eligible for healthcare. The plan, if passed, would effectively put private insurers out of business. Considering I believe private insurance companies are largely responsible for the healthcare mess in this country, I think such a system would be a boon.
Naysayers claim such a system would put all those insurance employees out of business. Not necessarily. Their experience can be transferred to the new US system. The bill creates such a provision. Specifically, “The Program shall provide that clerical, administrative, and billing personnel in insurance companies, doctors offices, hospitals, nursing facilities, and other facilities whose jobs are eliminated due to reduced administration (1) should have first priority in retraining and job placement in the new system; and (2) shall be eligible to receive 2 years of unemployment benefits.”
The bill has been introduced before. It went to die in committee. We have a new group in Congress today and a new president. Let’s hope this bill will receive the consideration it deserves.
To see the bill in its entirety, click here.
The Benson Hotel in Portland, Oregon has decided to stop playing live music. They gave the musicians who had been playing there for years one day notice. Not long before they had installed a flat-screen television in the bar. I guess sports or Fox News is preferable to any sort of culture. Nothing like treating the people well who worked for you for years. You never comped meals or parking, I guess there actions should not come as a surprise.
We still do not have the internets. We are expecting the installation Friday. I am really looking forward to having the internet at home. I have so much stuff to post here, plus TONS of work to complete for my scholarship application to Columbia and Milla’s application to the Waldorf School here. I have been hanging out at Starbucks, starting the process, figuring out what information is needed, heading back home, finding the information in all the boxes of crap, making another trip down, and on and on, so it goes. The deadline is Saturday at midnight, so the internets better be hooked up Friday or I’m screwed, that’s just all there is to it. I’ve been trying to get all the stuff together, but certain pages will not let you access them until you have entered information on the previous page. So I gather that info, enter it, am allowed access to the next page, only to discover I need another 20 years’ worth of crap. So much fun. Um, not really. I also have a bunch of blog posts, and a photo journal from our trip to post, but those things will have to happen after the financial aid apps are done. I guess my February work is cut out for me.
Update: So my boyfriend spoke to one of the lead musicians today. It turns out that while the Benson decision to dump the musicians with one day’s notice was poorly timed, their reasons came from critical money problems. The hotel has operated at 20 percent and below capacity all year. Their bar costs more to operate than it brings in. They are suffering economically. To cut a $400 a night operation seemed a necessity. Plus they are in talks to bring the musicians back as soon as they can afford to. I get it–they couldn’t afford it. I just wish they would have given the players the two weeks’ notice they were contractually obligated to supply.