Citizen Leader Recruits Straten for WO Rally

Listening to Domenic Cotter express his views makes you wonder what office he’s running for, though he adamantly denies any candidacy – at least not yet, anyway.

The Montclair resident is the organizing force behind next weekend’s “Rally for Freedom,” scheduled to take place on the steps of West Orange town hall on Sunday, 10/24 at 1 p.m. Cotter says that the reason for holding the rally in West Orange is because of its central location, and also to draw attention to the town’s 0 percent tax increase this year. Cotter wants to  make a positive statement about West Orange’s fiscal responsibility and good management, and rally citizens from all over Baristaville and beyond.

While he insists that he’s not looking to “dis” Montclair by holding the rally elsewhere, Cotter explains that his own town’s ever-rising taxes are the force behind his pent up frustration. Besides, he thinks that people just don’t care enough in Montclair to show up. “There seems to be an apathy there,” he said, though he’s hoping that they’ll “wake up” and become members of his newly formed activist group, Citizens For Freedom.

Joining Cotter in speaking out about “the most important current issues facing our area and our country” will be congressional candidate Roland Straten and other concerned citizens. Cotter says there will be a contingent from the NJ Tea Party Coalition — which have endorsed the rally — and he’s expecting hundreds of people who are just as fed up with the government as he is. Here’s an excerpt from a statement Cotter submitted to the Tea Party’s blog site:

Our liberty, freedom & individual prosperity are under assault by elected officials who are supposed to be working towards our best interests. From the Federal level (ObamaCare, cap & trade) to local municipalities (i.e. the proposed 5.8% property tax increase in Montclair), government on every level is failing the American citizen. We need a change in leadership.

Cotter is hoping his fellow Montclair residents will snap out of their apathy and take action against the current local leadership. “The Montclair town council is not doing right by the people,” he said. “They can’t keep raising taxes — these increases are frightening and unsustainable.” Cotter wonders whether Montclair’s leadership has the backbone to make the difficult changes they need to make.

A registered Republican and owner of a small television production company, Cotter says the main point of the rally is to generally encourage activism, and give concerned citizens a voice. He hopes the event will remind everyone to vote. “There’s never been a more crucial time for people to get involved with government decisions, from the town hall level all the way to 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.”

“I’ve always been political, but the lack of responsibility and preparedness in the current Montclair government has inspired me to step up to the plate,” Cotter explained. Hearing the end-of-his-rope frustration in his voice reminded me of Peter Finch’s monologue from the movie Network, which urged the film’s citizens to stick their heads out the window and yell “I’m mad as hell and I’m not gonna take it anymore.”

Figuratively sticking his own head out the window, Cotter has been reaching out to people throughout the surrounding towns, but he’d really like to hear from his Montclair neighbors. “We need to rally together now, while the  council is thinking about the 2011 budget. We need to express our displeasure publicly in large numbers.”

It remains to be seen whether Cotter’s fellow citizens are as motivated as he is, but the aspiring politician might just have enough umph to make some changes all by himself.

Rally for Freedom

On the front steps of the West Orange Town Hall, 66 Main Street
Sunday, October 24, 2010 – 1 p.m.
Rain or Shine
For more information, write

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  1. Maybe Mr. Cotter would see more Montclairians at his rally if he focused specifically on Mtc’s budget issues instead of turning this into a Republican/Tea Party Convention. He lost me at “ObamaCare, cap & trade.”

  2. Good point, PAZ. The name is catchy, though. I like Freedom! And rallies are lots of fun. Maybe I’ll check it out.

  3. I too, like Tudlow, lost Mr.Cotter at ObamaCare, cap & trade, etc. As a long time resident of West Orange, I am proud that the township’s administration is acting in a fiscally responsible manner. However, what Mr.Cotter might not be aware of is that the current mayor of West Orange, the administration (generally), as well as his immediate predecessor are democrats. If Mr.Cotter wants to promote fiscall responsiblity he might want to align with the major parties and or candidates who actually have acted accordingly rather than a fringe element that does not put forth any real solutions and instead spews divisive rhetoric

  4. While I am proud of the fact that WO has had a zero percent tax increase this year and last, I’ll let you know how I feel after Wednesday. That is the day the Reval Man is expected to pay a visit to our humble abode.

  5. It didn’t take long for this local anger to be hitched to the Tea Party Express.

    I’ll give Mr. Cotter $50 cash if he can actually explain why he doesn’t like cap and trade.

  6. Yup. I enjoyed Cotter’s rants at the town council meetings, but his Republican leanings are going to kill any interest that residents of Montclair might have had. This town would reelect a Democrat even if he ended up in jail. The protest should be non-partisan. Unfortunately, it will be seen as another cooky teabagger assembly by the people it is supposed to affect.

  7. I’ll give Mr. Cotter $50 cash if he can actually explain why he doesn’t like cap and trade.

    Or why that, and “ObamaCare,” isn’t in our best interest.

  8. I’ll be there!

    I’ll bring the Obama with a Hitler mustache posters and some “show me the birth certificate” bumper stickers.

  9. Frankly, cap and trade is cumbersome, will increase government bureaucracy and add another layer of inefficiency to the energy markets. If you really want to reduce fossil fuel consumption, do as Charles Krauthammer has long suggested: TAX IT.

    Is there any candidate or group in our region who has a real grip on what “freedom” means? Roland Straten’s website blurts breathlessly about being for smaller government on one page, then on another basically announces the intention to maintain our overwhelmingly expensive global military presence.

    I’ve heard the vague “spend less” stuff a plenty, but where does this guy, Domenic Cotter, stand on personal liberty issues?

    Finally, how does picking one entrenched party over another demonstrate “leadership” in any real sense of the word?

  10. Oh good, croi. Now I’ll be able to pick you out of the crowd and introduce myself. I’ll be the chick in the powdered wig.

  11. “Citizen leader” – ??? really. As proclaimed by whom? And doesn’t a leader generally require followers?

  12. Why, walleroo, did you specifically refer to Cotter’s baldness? Envy that your own quite possibly follicularly challenged head doesn’t look quite so Samson-like? In any case, it was an ad hominem remark, and not necessary from the usually kindly likes of thee.

    Still, I wonder why th Barists chose to run a picture either from Cotter’s prom or some stint he did as a wedding usher. No man, of any conceivable gender preference, looks good in a petal pink tie.

  13. cathar, maybe good Mr. Cotter just went a bit over the top with the pink in his effort to recognize October as Breast Cancer Awareness Month.

  14. Actually, Cro, that was the first thing that came to my mnd when I saw the pink accessories.
    I also agree that Mr Cotter would have garnered many more Montclair residents by remaining non-partisan, but perhaps that wasn’t his real intention.

  15. It was a compliment, cathar. He has a smooth shave. The skull is rounded, but not bulbous. The ears do not protrude. He conveys a certain softness, but also manliness. Overall, he is better off without hair.

    I suspect you are the type with hair in abundance; perhaps a pony tail to go with your Harley?

  16. I believe Mr. Cotter does have followers. They would be: Vinnie Barbanino, Juan Epstein, Horseshack, and Freddie “Boom Boom” Washington.

  17. Oh, bebop, my favorite show when I was youngin.

    Oh Mr. Cott-tair, I share your concern about Montclair budget woes, but regarding some of your other sentiments–up your nose with a rubber hose.

  18. you’ve got a point cro. They are for the most part expendable, mindless drones.

    Ok, so be like the capitalist hippies, then!

  19. Good to see you sticking with your convictions.

    All living together, working towards a common goal, defending their homes against intruders, providing a product highly valued by all….

    You’re right! Who needs that?

  20. Don’t you guys have anything better to do than argue about whether bees are socialists or capitalists? Honestly. You must both live in old-age homes.

  21. This from the guy who comments on Cotter’s dome.

    There’s a rocking chair right next to ours here on the porch with your name on it, my friend.

  22. Even going just by this month’s NFL games, croiagusanam, no, the pink Cotter is in is by far the wrong shade.

    But then, I’d even suspect the “citizen journalists” on this site to have purposely chosen a photo of Cotter in which his skull’s washed-out skin tone matches both his cravat and boutonniere.

    Never had a pony tail, walleroo. Often wind up at folk-type concerts full of balding guys with grayish ponytails (there are also always a few of them at those Friday afternoon peace vigils in downtown Montclair, I can’t quite take guys who adopt this look totally seriously, at least not since Albert Grossman died), and I always wind up sounding like the Pharisee in the famous Bible parable (famous, that is, roo, if you’ve ever read the Bible as opposed to Sam Harris or Richard Dawkins for enlightenment) where he compares himsef to a “lowly” Samaritan.

  23. Great point about the 0% tax increase. But is it coupled with the same feelings that people expressed when Montclair’s school ranking was abysmal at 94, down from 85? In the same study, West Orange was ranked at 128, down from 114 in 2008.

    That’s all.

  24. Schooled…we must stop equating dollars with school quality. I can show you plenty of schools that spend $3,000 less per student that are twice as strong as Montclair and West Orange.

  25. Wow. I love my home state of NJ but I’m starting to think you people are getting exactly what you deserve! Even if you disagree with Mr. Cotter, at least he is acting on something he believes very strongly in. Some of you people actually agree with him but write him off simply because he’s a registered Republican. That is so idiotic, I don’t even have a comment for you fools! If you fit in that category, maybe YOU should run for political office because you’d fit right in with Washington DC! (That goes for both sides) And for the moron who responded with “this town would elect a Dem even if he were in jail” Your current Governor didn’t get that memo. Mr. Cotter is actually starting a rally around something positive that has happened in our state. It’s funny how New York and New Jersey always describe themselves as being such a tolerant place. I guess you can do or say whatever you want as long as you belong to a certain party.

  26. Scott, no one is writing him off because he’s a Republican. People are saying that in a town like Montclair, which is very liberal, he is likely to have less traction mixing in local budget issues and local tax issues with a tea bagger rally. A lot of people here, not all, but many, support things like health care reform and cap and trade and voted for Obama. It’s not that people here are apathetic, it’s that they don’t share his political point of view.

  27. Well scott is certainly in a lather.

    Mr. Cotter would have a better chance of garnering local support if he left out the usual anti-Obama, etc. talking points. It seems that it is HE who feels that one must belong a “certain party” in order to be against high taxes, mismanagement, etc. Perhaps the “moron” jibe should should be directed elsewhere, scott. Maybe even to the mirror.

  28. That’s exactly it Cro. Mr. Cotter is so wrapped up in party rhetoric that he doesn’t realize how powerful it might have been to get some fiscally conservative democrats behind him. Instead he simply alienated the people who he would need to affect change on the local level.

    Scottrosa is simply lost. I support what Cotter represents, but not his strategy. This is too difficult of a concept for a teabagger to understand.

  29. I can’t tell what cap and trade has to do with taxes in Montclair. It also seems to me essential to reform healthcare in order to lower our local taxes as that is a main variable in driving up the cost of property taxes.

    If Mr. Cotter wants support he’s going to have to lay down a plan and some ideas. Just calling for a Rally of Freedom is silly and insults the intelligence of people actually trying to hammer out a solution.

    The West Orange residents voted down the proposed tax increase this year. It wasn’t until the budget was denied at the ballot did the town council listen and put through a ‘no tax’ increase budget.

    Having Montclair vote to approve or deny a town budget would be a good step in fiscal sanity.

  30. He’s simply a citizen trying to make a difference and he’s not hiding who he is or what he believes in. If you want to fault him for that or disagree with his politics, you’re 100% free to do so. But when I see people personally attacking him and the way he looks, that’s when I have a problem with it and defend him. And to continually right off the Tea Party movement as a bunch of fools shows how inept you are. It is a National phenomena that illustrates the power of our democracy. Although it is regularly embraced by Conservatives and threatens the current administration, I don’t see it as a Republican or Democratic movement. Rather a movement to put people in office that truly view their political office as a means of public service. NOT as means of personal gain through political power. We see it on BOTH sides and people all over the country are fed up with it.

  31. Standing up for freedom is silly? It insults someones intelligence? Really?–no but the way he’s doing it is.

  32. Standing up for freedom is silly? It insults someones intelligence? Really?
    Yes, when it is thrown out there without evidence of actual deep thinking on the subject. It’s a mere hook line from a sales pitch without something more substantive than using a loaded catch phrase such as “Obamacare”

    I poke fun at the “Save Darfur” rallies that have no plan about what to do when the bad guys don’t cooperate. Same thing here, when “preserve Freedom!” can mean any number of hollow things in the hands of an exuberant political Elmer Gantry.

  33. I think the Obama Healthcare bill is used as an example because it was a blatant misuse of political power. The majority of Americans disagreed with passing that bill but it was passed anyway. Why? Because the administration had the power to do so. I honestly cant tell you if I support the bill or not because I have no idea what the hell is in there. And if you support the bill, please tell educate me on the specific benefits we’ll all be blessed with. Bottom line, it was purposely written so nobody could understand it and that scares me. It scares me about what is in there and scares me that power could be abused like that and REALLY scares me that there are people that are too blind to see that.

  34. Abuse of power? Where were you when Bush was in office? When candidate Obama was running, health care reform was at the top of his agenda and he got elected by a majority. And when he got into office he did what he said he was going to do. I fail to see a connection between local taxes and health care legislation.

  35. It scares me about what is in there and scares me that power could be abused like that and REALLY scares me that there are people that are too blind to see that.

    Fear is the best tool of political manipulators. If you are actually REALLY SCARED by that piece of legislation, you are exactly where they want you!

    The truly scariest piece of legislation proposed in the last decade was the 2 page emergency bailout bill proposed by the Republicans at the height of the meltdown — Bush’s Treasury Secretary was to have nearly unlimited power and the bill proposed that nothing he did could be challenged in the courts. Of course people caught onto this pretty damn quick, but it was far scarier than a broad-based insurance mandate.

  36. Scott is angry with the healthcare bill because it was passed by people who didn’t read it. Of course, HE didn’t read it either, but he’s still against it.

    He’s against a provision barring insurers from dropping customers when they get ill.
    He’s against children remaining on a policy to age 26.
    He’s against the provision barring exclusion for pre-existing conditions.

    The simple fact is that Mr. Cotter could have had a rally against what most would agree is the insane spending and mismanagement on the local level. Instead, he chose to tie his protest to the Tea Party movement, which is overwhelmingly Republican, and to an anti-Obama agenda. That was HIS choice, and to now bemoan the fact that liberals won’t flock to the rally is insane.

    He clearly didn’t want them there anyway.

  37. The fed govt could do a number of things to reduce the cost of healthcare. Not saying it has, but if it did towns wouldn’t have to pay so much to provide health insurance and pressure to raise taxes to pay for public employee benefits softens.

  38. Mr. Cotter, as per the article, wanted to draw attention to West Orange’s fiscal policy and to Montclair’s poor record at same. This is therefore, by his definition, a local concern.
    Had he wished to hold a rally addressing national concerns, and there certainly are many of those, he should have billed it as such.
    He did not. That is dishonest.

    Is there some sort of revelation in your link, ROC. Or just your usual off-topic bomb-toss?

  39. “He’s against children remaining on a policy to age 26.”

    So am I. I was living on my own for four years already when I was 26. Had a job I hated, was making peanuts, lived with roomies, but I sure as hell didn’t even consider moving back home. Don’t get me wrong, I loved my parents, I just didn’t want to live under their roof anymore.

    Also, I got one of those letetrs in the mail two weeks ago from my health insurance carrier, telling me to “expect some changes to my policy for 2011.” Just can’t wait.

  40. I agree, Mrs. M. Parents do the best thing for their children when they push them toward financial dependence…And that involves encouraging them to support their own insurance policies…

  41. My oldest son is part owner of a small restaurant with 6 employees. A policy to cover them all is prohibitively expensive so he carries an individual “catastrophic illness” policy with a high deductible.

    My middle son works at a university and has excellent health benefits.

    My third son recently graduated from college. He was hoping to be hired by the company where he was interning but all they could currently provide him was a position as an independent contractor with no benefits and a wage of $15/hr. We were looking at continuing his coverage under my wife’s policy under the COBRA extension which costs about $200 a month. Luckily for us, he is now eligible for continuation on her policy as a dependent at a cost to us of $60 a month. He is pursuing a full time position with benefits but there isn’t much out there for the recent grads. We’re happy that all of our sons are gainfully employed.

    Three young men with three separate benefit scenarios. I guess the lesson learned is that you should just grab any job that has benefits.

  42. Perhaps my favourite objection to ANY issue starts with “When I was … (fill in the blank).

    Your situation when you were 26 is, well, YOUR situation. At a time of nearly 10% unemployment and rates for insurance that are through the roof, the opportunity to continue coverage for one’s children to age 26 is quite literally a life-saver for many.

    Fortunately, though for how long it remains to be seen, the Dana Carvey Cranky Old Man approach has not fully taken root in America.

  43. If the Republicans were true fiscal conservatives, they would push for a Single Payer system.

    That is not the case and we are all paying top dollars for mediocre services. Funny how everyone thinks that we have the best healthcare in the world. I blame Marcus Welby MD…

  44. Well, where do we draw the line then, Cro? 30, 40, 50?

    When I was 26, we WERE in a pretty bad recession so please don’t tell me how bad “kids” have it today.

  45. Mrs M, a really bad recession is not what we have now. And back then, you could go to a doctor or a clinic for $25.00 – $50.00. I remember most health care plans back then were not managed care plans and they had high deductibles because people were expected to pay for the annual check up etc. That’s not the case today.

  46. You’re asking me where I’d draw the line?
    There would be a single-payer national health system, and therefore no need for a discussion of this nature. That’s what I prefer.

    I have no idea how old you are or what the economic realities were during your youth, and again, so what? I don’t look at issues from the standpoint of “well, I didn’t get/need/want it, so you can’t either”.

  47. I don’t look at issues from the standpoint of “well, I didn’t get/need/want it, so you can’t either”.

    Cro: That’s exactly what you’d get with a single-payer national healthcare system

  48. A single payer national healthcare system would allow local towns to offload health insurance to the feds. Sounds good to me.

    Mrs. Martha we will more post college ‘kids’ living at home. On my way back home from the train I overheard two recent grads with jobs that they were planning on living at home to save money. Those w/o jobs I imagine are also living at home.

    I get the feeling this recession is unlike earlier ones. Comparison’s to Japan are being made and Japan still hasnt recovered from its early 90’s property bust.

  49. If you really think things are going to improve under this new plan, then I have a bridge in Brooklyn to sell you. I have yet to see any government entity that is run like a well-oiled machine. Also, have you been reading about hospitals running out of money? Big cover story in this week’s NY Magazine. Do you honestly think things will get better under Obamacare?

  50. This is hypothetical discussion about a single payer plan which do not have and which was not even on the table when health care reform was being discussed. “Obamacare” is not nationalized health care.

  51. One of the solutions regarding healthcare is to make insurance available cross state line which would encourage competition. We have it for car insurance why not medical?

  52. Its the same old Hannity-Rush mantra. The “government” can’t do anything effectively. The private sector can.


    Hospitals have been having serious problems for years. You might recall Mountainside’s woes, which started long before Obama was on the scene. The theory that nothing will get better under the government, so we’ll just let it alone to suck as it is can best be termed a crackpot theory, at best.

    I long for those private sector equivalents to the CDC, FDA, Coast Guard, FAA, NASA, etc., etc.

  53. I don’t think my healthcare costs will go down under the Dems plan.

    Happy that Beale’s child will be able to take advantage of it, but I don’t see any advantage for myself. Nothing was done to contain costs.

    Under a single payer plan I thought the costs would be spread out across the country. We’d still be paying for it, but with more people paying in it should cost less per person.

    Hospitals are closing under the current system and we haven’t even gotten to the reforms yet. I asked my doctor if the problems are with insurance companies, drug companies, the government and he says it’s all of the above.

    How bout no insurance at all and we return to pay as you go? That would reduce costs, right?

  54. “Under a single payer plan I thought the costs would be spread out across the country. We’d still be paying for it, but with more people paying in it should cost less per person.”

    This part is confusing to me. In theory, it should work. But a lot of folks will not be able to pay, period. They don’t have the money, they are living hand-to-mouth and just scraping by. So I think it’s a big illusion.

  55. People without money get care in emergency rooms which is a huge cost to the rest of us. It might be (I don’t know the numbers) less costly as a nation to subsidize those who can’t pay by providing them with insurance than having people use the emergency room to treat a cold that’s morphed into something serious.

    Not only buying insurance across state lines, but how bout letting Americans import cheaper prescriptions from Canada. US prescription drug buyers are subsidizing the rest of the world who pay lower prices than we do for the same drugs.

  56. States currently mandate certain levels of coverage that insurers must provide. Insurance companies have ALWAYS been able to make “compacts” allowing them to do business in multiple states. They have elected not to do so. Allowing companies to cross state lines sounds fine, but what will happen most likely is that without federal regulation we will see a reprise of the credit card industry. Most issuers flocked to states that allowed them to charge outrageous interest rates and provide virtually zero consumer protections — South Dakota and Delaware come to mind.

    Health insurers would then preside over a “race to the bottom”. In order to offer cheap plans, companies would issue policies only to those deemed low-risk. Their rates would go down. Everyone else’s would go up to cover the difference.

    Where this inexplicable trust in the good nature and big heart of the private sector came from is a mystery. Even a cursory reading of history would argue quite the opposite. Companies do the right thing, when they do, mostly because someone makes them do it.

  57. It’s not a single payer plan. It is not nationalized health care which would mean the government pays salaries directly to health care providers. It is legislation directed at the insurance industry. It requires everyone to have insurance or pay a fine. In theory, that should lower the cost of insurance because there will be more people in the pool so the risk is spread over a larger number of people. The new law also does not allow insurers to discriminate based on preexisting conditions. The new law also allows families to keep their children on their plans until they are 26. The law also allows for state funded exchanges – still private insurance. I thought we were finally over the Fox/Palin/Beck nonsense about death panels and the state taking over the medical industry and socialism and Nazi’s but I guess not.

  58. “Where this inexplicable trust in the good nature and big heart of the private sector came from is a mystery. Even a cursory reading of history would argue quite the opposite. Companies do the right thing, when they do, mostly because someone makes them do it.”

    The converse is true, too. Yes, there are some shady goings on with private enterprise…the recent class action law suits against some mobile phone companies questionable fee schedules comes to mind. The credit card companies, we know about them. But then there are contrary examples–not every big company is “out to get you.” Netflix is a good example of a company with excellent customer service. So it’s a mixed bag but I truly believe that most do the right thing not so much becuase someone tells them to do it but because they want to gain our trust.

    On the flip side, I always thought of government agencies as not so much as corrupt but as substandard. There’s an attitude of, “I’ll just do what I was hired for…beyond that, it’s not my job. Oh, and by the way, I get off at 4.” For the most part, they are slow, they are inefficient, there’s lots of room for errors, and they don’t care. Very hard to get fired from a government job so why should they go the extra mile?

    Who’s governing the government?

  59. And cro is correct. Self regulation = no regulation and the insurance companies have gotten away with very favorable regulation for way too long. There is no reason they should have been exempt from federal anti – trust laws that have enabled them to fix prices and divide markets in a way that ensures maximum profits for themselves and a royal screwing for the rest of us.

  60. Cro. What makes you trust government to do the right thing? Excessive waste and fraud exist in the Medicare and medicaid programs now. I have friends in England who describe long waits for services that can be had here almost instantly. Those of us who would rather have more say regarding healthcare and not turning it over to the government have many valid reasons. It goes to a philosophy of life which suggests a greater independence from government vs reliance on “big brother”

  61. “In theory, that should lower the cost of insurance”

    Whoops! “In theory” you can’t get something for nothing:

    “The state’s largest insurer has been approved to raise health premium rates by 41 percent to 47 percent for some of its policies sold to individual buyers, in the largest price hikes yet seen in Connecticut since the adoption of national health care reform.

    For all of its individual market plans, Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield has received approval to raise rates by at least 19 percent — including a range of 30 percent to 44 percent for the brand of plans in the individual market that was most popular in 2009, Century Preferred.

    The reason for the increases is the new federal health reform mandates, according to Anthem and the state Department of Insurance”

  62. That came from the Hartford Courant, but the baristabot in it’s maniacal despotism won’t let me post the link.

  63. can’t post a tinyurl like either. It just vanishes into the vapors….

    https:// /24bl52s

  64. ROC, I lived under the British system for years, and several of my children still do. The system has its problems, certainly. But by and large it works far, far better for the average UK resident than the American one does.

    Again, the current pan does not call for you to “turn over” your coverage for anything. This nonsense that the government is controlling health care under a new set of evil mandates put forth by a socialist has had a long run, but it remains the same crock that it always was.

    And please, spare me the independence versus big brother song and dance. You and yours are all to happy to huddle under the umbrella of government protection and largesse when it suits you, all the while singing from the “rugged individualism” songbook.

  65. whatever cro. a 47% government caused raise in rates is there for all to see. And, no doubt, soon to appear elsewhere.

    This, of course, is what’s supposed to happen. Obamacare will destroy private insurance so we have no other option. But don’t worry folks you are of course “free” to pay 47% more…

  66. I worry because I have Empire BC/BS and I anticipate a similar rate increase letter and/or a staff meeting with my employer talking about how he’s sorry but he’s going to have to raise rates or go with another provider. Of course, they won’t really be a lot of providers to choose from because they’ll all be jumping on the same bandwagon.

    My other option is to move to Sardinia, Italy, where I can be assured of a long, healthy life, insurance or no insurance.

  67. RoC it’s interesting that the debate is shifting once again to cost containment instead of coverage for all. I believe that emergency care for walk ins who are uninsured was one of the reason for high costs. Why ever, now that many folks are covered or going to be covered aren’t the costs lessening?

    One payer system will be just like income taxes with only a small portion of people contributing with the rest abusing without consequences.

    In the real world one size does not fit all no matter what good intentions exist.

  68. Don’t worry MM. Obama has promised this will lower rates. So lets see how correct he is. I note that even gurl is starting to add qualifiers to the trope like “in theory”. But don’t let that weaken the faith, MM.

  69. I’m sure that “Obamacare” was also the reason for Anthem’s 60% jump last year.

    Oh wait, the law hadn’t been passed then. Oh well.

    The company earned a nearly 3 billion dollars profit in the last quarter of 2009, so they need this jump.

    They’ve also raised their rates 395 in California, and are under investigation by the state even as we speak. That too was a “government caused” hike, I’m sure.

  70. well cro. thank goodness rates are falling elsewhere due to this landmark legislation. Right? Maybe you could clue us in to some of the falling rates, cro.

  71. I’d recommend the move to Sardinia, MM.

    There, the Servizio Sanitario Nazionale , the tax funded universal health care system, will fix you right up.

    Once you get an EU passport, of course.

  72. Perhaps you could clue ME in on the ones that were “falling” prior to this legislation (the bulk of which proposals, by the way, have not yet taken effect)?

    Did I misread all of the data” Was the cost of healthcare and of insurance headed down until mean ol’ Obama messed things up?

  73. “Did I misread all of the data” Was the cost of healthcare and of insurance headed down until mean ol’ Obama messed things up?”

    no it was going up. and now its going up MORE (see WSJ piece)


  74. Oh! THE WALL STREET JOURNAL! Well, I stand corrected, then.

    But I guess its a little bit better than your post earlier, wherein you quoted Anthem itself as the source for its charge that the rate increase was due to the health care law.


  75. “But I guess its a little bit better than your post earlier, wherein you quoted Anthem itself as the source for its charge that the rate increase was due to the health care law.”

    and the CT department of Insurance too. cro. They said the same thing. Hey…. think the state of Connecticut is in on the conspiracy too, cro?

    And in the AP piece cro,

    “So far, the law he signed earlier this year hasn’t had the desired effect. An analysis from Medicare’s Office of the Actuary this week said that the nation’s health care tab will go up – not down”

    The actuary at Medicare, he’s in on it too?

    All these scoundrels, cro. What’ll we do?

  76. The WSJ story and AP story use the governments own numbers, its own projections. Talk about your head in the sand, cro.

  77. I go away for a few hours and come back and what do I see?

    cro: blah blah blah
    ROC: blah blah blah
    cro: blah blah blah
    ROC: blah blah blah
    cro: blah blah blah
    ROC: blah blah blah
    cro: blah blah blah
    ROC: blah blah blah
    cro: blah blah blah
    ROC: blah blah blah
    cro: blah blah blah
    ROC: blah blah blah
    cro: blah blah blah
    ROC: blah blah blah
    cro: blah blah blah

  78. “Doesn’t tell quite the same story you tell, ROC.”

    Doesn’t tell much of a story at all, really. The CSMS, a group in favor of universal healthcare, disputes the raises granted to TWO insurance companies in CT? I’m sure they do. So what?

    Does nothing to refute what the federal governments’ own projections say, which is costs will be higher under Obama’s plan that without.

  79. It doesn’t say much to one whose mind is already made up, granted.

    It doesn’t say that the rate hike was predicated on projected cost increases rather than real ones, and that those projections are themselves suspect.

    Well, OK, it does say that. But you go right on singing the song, ROC.

  80. I keep paying more for health insurance every year under private plans.

    Is there a market based way to reduce costs?

  81. Oh we needn’t forget that we must toss out the CT “Dept.of Insurance” endorsement of your view (leaving aside the CT attorney general’s objection and call for an investigation, as well as all of CT’s comgressional reps).

    After all, we know that no government entity knows what its doing and must, by definition, be wrong.

  82. “It doesn’t say that the rate hike was predicated on projected cost increases rather than real ones, and that those projections are themselves suspect.”

    The 2 paragraph report which seems to be the foundation of your argument cro doesn’t really say much of anything at all. An advocacy group is calling for an investigation.

    Ok. Again I say, so what? Obama said costs would come down. His actuaries in his own government now say costs would have been lower without his plan. YOu can take that at face value or keep pining your hopes on some other superstition that we can add coverage at lower cost. Whatever floats your boat.

    But facts are stubborn things. I guess we’ll have to weigh these mere CBO “rumors” of higher costs with the constant anecdotal evidence of our myriad friends and relations who are jubilant with their falling rates.

    Well, that or “shift our tone” like Obama has.

  83. You talking about facts being stubborn things may not make comment of the day, but it should.

    If you would really like to put forward the government’s projections and findings on the costs of the bill, which again has not fully implemented and won’t for years to come, and reduce it to fit your WSJ argument, be my guest. An in-depth and thorough reading would require the shedding of your own bias, and we know that won’t/can’t happen. The truth of the matter is that the CBO, etc. has projected a cost decrease over time. Will it happen? I don’t know. Nor do you.

    And I love that the WSJ and Anthem insurance itself is somehow NOT an “advocacy group”.

    You know ROC, I could go outside into the yard and bang my head against the beautiful weeping willow in order to replicate the experience of a “dialogue” with you. So I think that’s what I’ll do.

    You can remain hunkered down awaiting the cost Armageddon that will surely arrive any day now.

  84. It is unfortunate that our insurance coverage has morphed into a payment mechanism for any medical needs. Insurance is a means of managing risk or or protecting against the possibility of an unexpected loss. To use it to cover minor expenses such as annual check ups really inflates the costs for all of us while providing very little (if any) benefit in return.

  85. “u know ROC, I could go outside into the yard and bang my head against the beautiful weeping willow in order to replicate the experience of a “dialogue” with you. So I think that’s what I’ll do.”

    You know cro, if you get 3 or 4 others to join you the aggregate amount of pain will be less, per our President’s logic.

  86. well, so long as you continue to “implement the procedure over time for years to come” that is.

  87. Mr. ROC:

    I am cro’s mum, and I must inform you that he will not respond to your jibes as I have forbidden him to play with you. He is a friendly lad, but I fear that sometimes he socializes (oh dear, I know you HATE that word) with companions who are not good for him. Just now, he is in the backyard banging his head against our lovely tree in frustration.

    Of course, I blame the priests for all of this. When cro was in school, the Jesuits taught him to look at issues from all sides and to avoid simplistic solutions based on incomplete or shoddy evidence. Goodness, I sound like the psychologist, don’t I? I am really not all that educated, I can assure you. Nonetheless, the poor dear took those lessons to heart and in doing so, assumed that others would as well. Sadly, he’s learned that many do not look much further than their own notions when trying to argue a point. This frustrates him, as he is a sensitive lad.

    I assure you I mean no insult to you. I’m sure you’re a lovely young boy and that you mean well. I’m sure your mum and da are quite proud of you as we are of our croi. Still, I have to put my foot down and insist that he no longer play with you. If it is any comfort, I’ve also prohibited him from contact with some of the other neighbourhood boys like that fellow cathar and prof and wally something. Fortunately, those bullies whatsup and clotty have moved away, so we need worry about them no longer. I do suspect, though, that sometimes croi sneaks out and plays with these boys anyway.

    I will say a Rosary for you, young man, and if you become better behaved you are welcome over for some scones.

    Good luck to you, dearie.

    Croi’s ma

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