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  1. I think that's more of a bath salts (methylenedioxypyrovalerone) problem, not a psilocybin problem. Evidence is building that this particular drug has neutral to positive effects on people's mental health. Counterintuitive, but that's what the evidence is showing.
  2. He could be President, and either he would make compromises with Congress that relative to his actual promises would seem like gigantic betrayals, which I imagine would infuriate his purist followers, or if he refuses to budge from any of positions, literally nothing will get done.
  3. I do. How urgent of a threat? I don't have a way to quantify or predict. I've seen lots of dire warnings, but they're hard to vet. Just because something is a threat shouldn't justify a blank check of potentially infinite federal expenditures to be spent on any and every thing any progressive has ever imagined the federal government should maybe do. First of all, there is no actual clear evidence or scientific consensus that the Green New Deal, which is an endless, nebulous array of progressive social and economic dreams, implemented only in the United States, would actually reverse anthropogenic climate change. There are all sorts of bad ideas that could be entertained in pursuit of this goal of "reversing climate change." Not all are bad ones, but some could be really bad ones. The Green New Deal has a whole bunch of extremely audacious stuff in it that has nothing whatsoever to do with climate. It's an all-inclusive list of progressive dreams. This just shows you in fact do not understand much at all, and that you are not paying attention. The Democratic Party is not sold on the Green New Deal because, as Pelosi said, it's just a list of aspirations. As I said, "dreams." The Democrats in Congress who want to actually achieve something, and would rather not intentionally divide their caucus between radicals and pragmatists, are not going to support it. The Green New Deal does not compel the world's governments to get serious.
  4. By the way, what a convenient argument this is. What if the GND cost $950 octillion? Wouldn't "the cost of doing nothing" still be more? How do we know it wouldn't? It probably would! Maybe the cost of doing nothing would be a nonillion dollars? Could even be a decillion dollars! I'm just gonna call it right now -- if we don't get climate change under control, we will likely have to spend at least $500 decillion dollars. The Green New Deal is just a rambling nebulous all-encompassing list of all the most idealistic progressive notions that have ever been dreamed up. No more than a small handful of the silliest most populist Congresspeople are going to actually support this buffoonery.
  5. Tell it to the dozens upon dozens of Democrats in Congress who don't see it that way. That's the point the HuffPo article is making. I agree, but the more moderate non-Bernie candidates are not proposing doing nothing. Lots of people, including relatively liberal ones, do not agree. Forgiving student loan debt, for example, is not an "investment" in higher education, and making college "free" to students requires the federal government control higher education costs. This only works if they're willing to actually control higher education costs. And looking at the way universities donate to political campaigns, there is arguably a conflict of interest there in terms of wanting to actually control higher education costs. No they wouldn't. They disregard the liberal economic consensus that single nations end up harming themselves when they institute wealth taxes. We need much broader international cooperation on global tax enforcement before wealth taxes would work. But backing up. The point of this thread is that a lot of Democrats in Congress do not embrace the hard-leftism in Bernie's policies, and so Bernie, if elected, will either betray his hardcore followers by making massive compromises to his positions, or he'll get nothing passed because he'll have to veto everything Congress sends to him, because it'll never be progressive enough.
  6. That's not nearly the only problem. There are tons of "problems" with it and tons of possible and/or partial solutions to those problems. In terms of this particular thread topic, the first problem is Congressional Democrats do not nearly universally support it as it is now.
  7. Thoughtful post, I like this response. However do you really see his most ardent followers forgiving him for making such compromises as would be necessary? He hasn't set himself up to be able to compromise very much, nor does anyone who "starts from a relative extreme position," if that extreme position is what people voted for and are clamoring for. It looks like you didn't read the link.
  8. If that happens, a lot of people will love single payer, because it will likely mean the cost control is weak and benefits therefore generous. The problem at that point would become how far and for how long we could push the dollar via loose fiscal and monetary policy to pay for health care the nation doesn’t want to pay for directly.
  9. The Big Roadblock For Bernie Sanders' Agenda (snip) “Every Republican and most Democrats in Congress publicly oppose Medicare for All. And while those numbers have certainly been shifting, there is almost certainly a critical mass of Democrats who would join Republicans to block a single-payer health care system in the House ― let alone the Senate, where Republicans are likely to retain the majority, or at least be a vote or two away from it.” “Anyone who thinks electing Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) president means that Medicare for All would become law has an unrealistic view of lawmaking. And it’s not just health care. Every component of his agenda that requires Congress would be a tough slog.”
  10. Here's a couple of basic critical components of MFA, for the benefit of all the ignorant partisan hacks around here who aren't good for anything except name-calling. There are a couple of gigantic things MFA would do, that could easily have a huge impact, and those huge impacts could be wonderful and terrible at the same time.1) Global budgeting for hospitals and major health systems. The idea that hospitals and major health systems will no longer get paid per service is absolutely seismic. On one hand, they would instantly cease having any incentive to over-provide services or over-bill for things. This could have an enormous cost-saving effect. Potentially wonderful, right? What are the possible downsides? How might it affect timeliness of care if providers have zero built-in incentives to see more people? How might it affect whether hospitals invest in new equipment and service offerings if DHHS doesn't generously reimburse their capital investment? If DHHS is too generous in its willingness to reimburse for those investments, then we're not containing costs well and medical equipment suppliers make out like bandits. If it's too stingy, poor access and quality of care is the price paid for the cost savings, as hospitals will refuse to take investment risks if they can't trust DHHS to cover the cost in the global budget. How exactly will DHHS handle its new global budgeting responsibilities for hospitals and major health systems? Will it be fair to rural hospitals whose per-patient total costs are astronomical? Will it be aggressive in cutting costs and saving money? Will DHHS' generosity or lack thereof swing wildly between Republican and Democrat administrations? No one knows these things. It's either "have faith in DHHS" or don't. 2) Fee-for-service remains in place for all non-hospital providers, except DHHS sets all reimbursement rates by decree. There is no more individual provider negotiation with third party payers for reimbursement rates. What DHHS says you get (as a provider) is what you get. This obviously is an enormously powerful cost-controlling power the DHHS will have, and there are of course benefits to having more powerful cost control. But on the other side of this coin, the same questions apply here. How will DHHS set rates for non-hospital providers and clinics? For those whose average reimbursement rates (from insurance) are significantly higher than Medicare rates, will DHHS pay attention to that and increase the rates to those providers? So far the evidence is no, that prevailing Medicare rates will be imposed. For some providers this would constitute a 30% or more cut to their revenue, and many out there can't sustain that kind of cut. This would really affect access to those services in some places. A promise that MFA will pay your health care bill is an empty one if no providers are around willing or able to actually provide it. So will DHHS do a good job setting these rates? What even constitutes a "good job?" If it aggressively sets the rates low to save taxpayers money, access suffers hugely. If it's too generous, providers will be happy but MFA will get more and more expensive. What will the outcome be? No one knows. It's either "have faith in DHHS" or don't.
  11. I'm pretty sure you don't have the first clue what the various health care reform options in front of us would do. You've never said anything about it that shows you've actually read or understood how it would work. To distract from this uncomfortable reality, you resort to childish name-calling.
  12. What in the f*** are you talking about? The guy hurling playground insults who can't string two coherent thoughts together is suggesting he's qualified to say anything about federal health care policy. You couldn't think or talk your way out of a paper bag on this topic. If you could, you'd be able to articulate the advantages and disadvantages. Cognition isn't your forte. You have nothing but your own boiling emotions.
  13. Sweden is vastly different than the U.S. It's a Nordic country with a population smaller than North Carolina. The list of significant differences could go on for pages. The hard-core conservatives understand this, which is why they tend to just oppose taxation and government in general across the board. Having a few absolutely core services doesn't really rise to the level of full blown socialism. The bigger deal is whether they want people whose labor no one wants to buy should suffer and whether health care should be provided to the elderly and poor, or not and they should be left to fend for themselves and survive on their own if they can. Usually hard core conservatives have a hard time with these issues. They want to complain about government without really wanting government to abandon the cause.
  14. There are three kinds of workers you could be referring to here. 1) Workers who are not in a union bargaining unit at all. There is no union that represents them. 2) Workers who by virtue of their position are in a union bargaining unit, but have opted out of membership. Assuming the union is "exclusive representative," the union compels representation on whatever person is in that position, and as a function of that compulsory representation, the union has to actually represent them.* 3) Workers who by virtue of their position are in a union bargaining unit, and have opted in to union membership. * What the Court's majority opinion was saying in Janus is that there are legal ways (as well as precedent) to reduce unions' representational burden when it comes to "free riders" that are less restrictive on individual rights than compelling everyone in category #2 above to pay the union what they call "agency fees."
  15. Um yes? It's not that uncommon and I've worked in an organization that had different pay scales. Further to your previous point that you believed it was unfair that workers represented by unions could refuse dues/agency fees, as we read in Janus (which made the entire country's public sector Right To Work): "Whatever unwanted burden is imposed by the representation of nonmembers in disciplinary matters can be eliminated “through means significantly less restrictive of associational freedoms” than the imposition of agency fees. Harris, 573 U. S., at ___ (slip op., at 30) (internal quotation marks omitted). Individual nonmembers could be required to pay for that service or could be denied union representation altogether. Thus, agency fees cannot be sustained on the ground that unions would otherwise be unwilling to represent nonmembers. (Footnote: 6. There is precedent for such arrangements. Some States have laws providing that, if an employee with a religious objection to paying an agency fee “requests the [union] to use the grievance procedure or arbitration procedure on the employee’s behalf, the [union] is authorized to charge the employee for the reasonable cost of using such procedure.” E.g., Cal. Govt. Code Ann. §3546.3 (West 2010); cf. Ill. Comp. Stat., ch. 5, §315/6(g) (2016). This more tailored alternative, if applied to other objectors, would prevent free ridership while imposing a lesser burden on First Amendment rights."
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