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Lies, lies & more lies. Cuts, cuts & more cuts. February 17, 2018

Posted by hslu in Congress, 特朗普, 美國, Election, Health Insurance, Taxes, Trump, US Government, 川普.
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The big cuts are coming!The big cuts are coming! And Trump and the Congress don’t give it a damn of what you think or feel. Campaign promises? They are meant to be broken after the election.

Source: Flipboard

Americans are the most gullible ones when it comes to their politicians.

They hate the Congress but keep sending the same representatives and senators back to DC. They filled the White House with liars after liars because they believe all the lies presidential candidates told them on the campaign trail, just to break all of them once in the office.

When Trump was asking your votes, he promised to“save Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security without cuts.”

Trump’s 2018 budget calls for cuts on all three programs and the congressional GOP also tried to cut $1 trillion from Medicare and about half a trillion from Medicaid. Here are the proposed cuts from Trump’s “An American Budget: Major Savings and Reforms”:

  1. Cutting Medicare by $266 billion.
  2. Cutting Medicaid by $1.1 trillion.
  3. Cutting Social Security by $72 billion.

So, all sinile and age challenged Americans, brace yourself for what is coming to you. Hospitals will get reduced payments from the Medicare too. Medicaid will see the biggest cut totaling $1.1 trillion over 10 years.

Additionally, Supplemental Security Income programs and Social Security Disability Insurance programs will see $72 billion cuts too.

You see, there is no place for you to hide no matter where you are in the system. Your medical benefits will be cut. Your doctor’s visits will be

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美國的民主政治 vs 中國的集權統治 October 18, 2017

Posted by hslu in China, 美國, Democracy, Election, Global Affair, Globlization, Health Insurance, Islam, Middle East, Military, Muslim, Obama, Obamacare, Putin, Racial Bias, Russia, Trump, U.S. Foreign Policy, 川普, 民主.
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大學好友寄來一篇有關美國民主政治和大陸集權統治的文章。看完後,想到臺灣最近坎坷的民主政治和困苦的經濟環境,忍不住感慨萬分。

中國數千年,朝代變遷,不論什麼政治體系,甚至包括一人獨裁的專制體系,那一個不是順民者昌,逆民者亡的?我時常說,能夠爲人民着想的政府,爲人民創造幸福的未來,讓人民安居樂業,社會安定的政府就是一個好的政府。

這篇文章是復旦大學中國研究研究員宋魯鄭在中國十九大開會前夕寫的。文章刊登在BBC News 中文網站上。值得一看。

Source: BBC News 中文版

http://www.bbc.com/zhongwen/simp/chinese-news-41645713

Source: BBC News 中文版

 

 

爲了給其他同學提供一些背景資料,我把美國近20年的政治變化簡短的摘要下來給他們參考。以下是我寫的摘要:

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謝謝高教授轉來的文章。

作者對“民主政治”的優,缺點分析的十分中肯,對一意孤行的川普和逐漸被世界排斥的美國也有明確的說明。在此,我斗膽把美國二十年來在外交和內政的變化簡短的跟大家報告一下,希望對你看這一篇文章有點幫助。

 

Clinton開始,美國就跟全世界說,伊拉克的 Saddam Hussein 擁有WMD。Bush Jr. 上臺8個月後發生911事件。美國以國家安全爲理由在2011年10月入侵阿富汗,在2013年3月入侵伊拉克。(Saddam Hussein 在 2000年10月堅持以歐元,不用美元,交換伊拉克的石油可能是美國攻打伊拉克的原因之一。)Bush Jr.爲了保護美國人民和本土,把美國的外交政策推向極右派好戰的陣營。2007年3月,美國次貸危機和 2008年9月的金融危機把全世界推向經濟蕭條的深淵。美國經濟衰退,欠債累累,失業率激增。這些事在2008年11月把Obama 推上了美國總統的寶座。

 

Obama 在他執政的八年中把美國的外交和內政推向極左派的自由主義陣營裏。對外,放棄美國霸權拒絕做全球警察,從伊拉克撤軍使得ISIS崛起,對阿富汗增兵然後撤軍,打擊以色列,討好阿拉伯回教國家,對中國採取“亞太再平衡”的圍堵政策,對蘇俄兼併克里米亞採取經濟制裁卻反而把蘇俄推向中國的懷抱。對敘利亞畫下紅線卻不採取行動,攻打ISIS不盡全力反而讓蘇俄在敘利亞建立軍事基地,簽訂伊朗核武協議,對北韓核武發展束手無策,進行TPP,TPA和TTIP談判,簽巴黎氣候協議增加美國公司負擔,影響美國勞工就業市場。最後在民主黨即將失去多數黨地位前與古巴建交。對內,他上臺後不立即更有效的用財政措施來拯救美國經濟,反而用他所有的政治資本來推動醫保全民化,簽訂 Dodd-Frank法案約束金融機構,約束石油公司,徹底打擊國內煤炭產業,濫用總統的行政權力變相的大赦非法移民,給婦女免費避孕藥,提倡社區大學兩年免費就讀,提倡同性戀婚姻合法化,支持變性人的合法地位,在軍中廢除“不問不說”政策和減弱美國人擁有槍支的權力。還有,Obama這個黑人總統和他對種族問題的迴避直接和間接的挑起了美國白人警察和黑人的武力衝突,也增加了白人對黑人的歧視和打擊黑人的決心。除此之外,金融危機帶動的量化寬鬆政策導致全世界貧富極端的不均。全球化和中國的崛起也增加美國民衆,尤其是美國南方保守派白人,對美國政府,美國前途和美國自由化現況的不滿。Obama執政八年已經無可否認的把美國變成了一個社會主義的國家了。

 

這些外在的因素和希拉蕊競選的失敗把川普推入了白宮。美國民主政治,四年河東,四年河西,動盪不安。我們現在看到的亂象都是歷史了。

 

謝謝。

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3% vs 2% September 30, 2017

Posted by hslu in 美國, Do you know?, Economics, Health Insurance, Obamacare, Taxes.
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We’re talking about the growth rate of American’s economy in the next 10 years.

Trump, well his underling, said that America’s economy will grow 3% on average for the next 10 years after Republican’s tax reform is enacted as law.

Source: Bloomberg.

You see, Republican and Democrat are ‘兩個烏鴉一般黑’, they are ‘一丘之貉’. They use this kind of financial trick to tell American citizens that even though their program, be it Obamacare in 2009 or tax reform in 2017, will increase deficit, but the resulting higher economic growth will generate enough taxes to make the new program budget neutral: a term you will hear repeatly before the end of this year.

Do you know the impact on American’s national debt if the economy grew 2% instead of 3%? 

About $2 trillion. And that’s assuming the U.S. won’t fall into a recession and no funny accounting gimmicks.

Last year, the U.S. federal deficit was $590 billion but the national debt rose by $1.4 trillion; a whoppying $810 billion difference.

Why? Where did $810 billion go?

Well, check out this link below and read yourself.

https://www.google.com.tw/amp/s/www.forbes.com/sites/johnmauldin/2016/11/02/thanks-to-obamacare-government-debt-is-worse-than-you-think/amp/#ampshare=https://www.forbes.com/sites/johnmauldin/2016/11/02/thanks-to-obamacare-government-debt-is-worse-than-you-think/
Allow me to give you some highlights to get you started:

Do you know that government’s borrowing to make student loans and repairs on highways and bridges aren’t classified as deficit? These items are ‘investments’ so that they don’t count as deficit. In addition, the U.S. government had to borrow some money to pay for social welfare recipiants because the government didn’t collect enough taxes from FICA deductions to pay for social welfare benefits: social security, Medicare and ACA. There are more in the article if your blood pressure is under control.

A warning: as powerful as America is, all bean counters working for the federal government couldn’t figure out where $82 billion went.

This is your America.

Conservatives are seriously f%&¥#* by Trump September 13, 2017

Posted by hslu in Congress, 美國, Democracy, Economics, Election, Health Insurance, Military, Obamacare, Politics, Trump, US Government.
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Trump pushed Mitch and Paul under the Chuck-Nancy bus and, with a sneer on his face, folded his arms and declared that he was the boss whether they liked it or not.

All the sudden, thanks to Trump’s betrayal, Republicans was royally f%&¥#* from behind, couldn’t utter a word of rejection and lost all chips on the table to deal with the Democrats.

Trump ran as a Republican not because he was one but because it was convenient for him. He couldn’t run as a Democrat against Hillary because she was favored to win the election before the electiin got started. Don’t forget Trump gave Schumer a lot of money over the years too.
As for tax reform, Democrats will push for no tax breaks for the top 10% and any tax cut has to be revenue neutral. Corporate tax reform (e.g., decrease corporate tax rate to 15% level) will face an uphill battle too because the current personal tax rate is higher than the proposed corporate tax rate. If the new corporate tax rate is indeed lower after the reform, people will form corporates and report their incomes as a corporate instead of a person.

Besides, revenue neutral under any scenario is almost impossible considering all the welfare obligations of the federal government. On top of that, defense spending increae sought by Trump and Republicans, Trump’s beautiful wall, hurricane relief fundings and more troops to Afghanistan are hot items on Democrat’s rejection list. The fact that Republican can’t get 60 votes on Senate for any subject spells trouble for Republican’s effort before it begins.

No tax reform legislature this year. Repeal and replace Obamacare is almost dead after seven years. If the Republican can get tax reform early next year, look for a new speaker in the house and a new majority leader in the Senate after 2018 mid term election.

K5 is dead. July 21, 2017

Posted by hslu in Congress, Health Insurance, Obamacare.
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Knightscope K5 was too upset to keep on living after hearing that GOP had failed to get enough votes to kill the Obamacare, again.

It wasn’t a mistake or an accident. Our beautiful robot had enough with everything going on in Washington D.C.

 

First nail to the Obamacare coffin May 5, 2017

Posted by hslu in Congress, Health Insurance, Obamacare, Trump.
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Without Obamacare, Obama was a U.S. president who accomplished nothing in 8 years.

Well, Obamacare was a failed experiment and Democrat paid dearly for the mistake.

Ryan and Trump should read this March 31, 2017

Posted by hslu in Economics, Health Insurance, Trump.
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http://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2017/03/28/health-reform-road-ahead.html

The road ahead for health care reform in the U.S. is treacherous and filled with many obstacles. The process outlined by Newt Gingrich is a good one: sensible, pragmatic, comprehensive and well-thought-out. 


Unfortunately, it has a small chance of being followed by the White House, the Congress or health care reform advocates.

The reasons are simple:

  • No one in the Beltway wants to touch it with a 10-foot pole.
  • Whoever brave enough to bring this subject back will lose his seat in 2018 or 2020.
  • Republican’s margin in Senate before 2018 is too small even if a bill passes the House.
  • Trump won’t understand it because it is much more complicated than building an apartment building. 
  • Trump has no vision to see the forest. He can’t handle the details. 
  • It takes more than 140 characters to get the points cross.
  • American people don’t have the patient nor the stamina to follow it through. They care about the results only; not the process.
  • Democrats will do their darnedest to block the legislature in the Congress.
  • Republican will lose the control of Senate to a united Democrat Party in 2018.
  • People work in The Congressional Budget Office don’t like Trump. It will come up with a number that will make the bill, any health insurance reform bill, look bad.

Could but not is March 29, 2017

Posted by hslu in Economics, Health Insurance, Social Issues.
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If a person doesn’t have health insurance, he or she won’t live as long as people with health insurance. 

That’s not debatable.

When a person is obese, like many Americans are, his or her life will be shorter. 

Common sense.

Attribute longer life expectancy for Canadians to Canada’s universal health insurance system is a stretch to put it mildly. 

The headline is misleading. 

The article talked about Canadian patients diagnosed with cystic fibrosis as an infant who on average lived 10 years longer than average American patients with the same disease. 

If you believe the headline, you are duped to think that the one-payer health insurance system in Canada is better than the system in the U.S. 

It is not. 

With no monetary incentives, Canada’s health-related industries wouldn’t produce life-saving medicines or medical instruments like their counterparts in the U.S. have done. Canadians benefited from the medical advances developed in America and the article totally ignored this little fact.

Canada, about 8% of the U.S. in terms of GDP, is a socialist country with very high income taxes, 5% GST (Goods and Services Tax), up to 10% HST (Harmonized Sales Tax), a separate PST (Provincial SalesTaxes) in some provinces, a weak currency, fewer fancy cars, harsher weather in the winter, short spring, beautiful summer, slow pace in their daily lives, relaxed atmosphere at offices, less stress at work, cleaner air and water, highly dependent of exports of its natural resources (primarily crude oil and oil from oil sand) and a good social welfare (unemployment benefit) system.

The bottom line is this: the average life expectancy for Canadians is almost 3 years longer than that for Americans.

Be careful about what you read on the web; even on a website as creditable as BBC.

When in doubt, check it out yourself.

The greatest deal maker not March 28, 2017

Posted by hslu in Congress, Health Insurance, Politics, Trump, US Government.
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Trump proudly called himself the negotiator-in-chief but couldn’t even close a deal in the House of Representatives which is controlled by his own party. 

What kind of deal maker is Trump really? 

A losing one. So far. 

Have you heard of these deals?

Trump Steaks, Trump University, Trump Vodka, Trump Suits, Trump fragrances, Trump board game, Trump ghostwritten books, Trump energy drink, Trump eyeglasses and Trump chocolate bars.

These are all Trump deals.

Maybe Trump is over-rated?

Repealing Obamacare should be essier from the budgetary point of view because AHCA should save America tax payers nearly one trillion dollar over a decade. Tax reform, defense budget and infrastructure policies require debt increase to pass. 

The bill which ultimately would reduce national debt didn’t get to pass, what chance do the ones requiring more America tax money have over the objection of the Freedom Caucus?

Not a lot.

Trump might know how to close a deal on an apartment building but he probably knows nothing about heardcare, influence of the special interest groups, what it takes to control various factions in the Republican Party and how to deal with the opposition from the Democrat Party. 

Trump still has a long way to go and a steep learning curve to climb.

臺灣全民健保世界第一 March 2, 2017

Posted by hslu in Chinese Food, Health Insurance, Nursing, Taiwan.
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昨天下午,我們在龜山(林口邊上)長庚醫院對面Starbucks樓上喝咖啡時看到長庚醫院的一位”病人”自己推著”點滴”來對面的巷子裏買滷菜。

無怪呼臺灣的全民健保是世界第一。如果病人不喜歡醫院的”養生餐”,可以自己出來買豬耳朵,鴨脖子和滷大腸。豆腐乾和海帶也來一點。

這位林口長庚醫院的病人,自己推著”點滴”,從病房出來,坐電梯下樓,在醫院裏走好幾條長廊,躲開來來往往的人群,出了醫院的後門以後,跨過一條六十英尺寬的雙線車道,再走四,五十步到復興一路等紅綠燈。走過一百英尺寬的復興一路,左轉,再走一百英尺到巷子口,右轉彎,走個二十步,就到滷肉攤子了。不算遠。走快一點,十五,二十分鍾吧。

她一手扶著點滴,一手指著她要的滷菜,選完以後,滷菜攤子的老闆給她切好,在滾水裏燙個四十秒鐘,撈起來放在塑膠袋裏。向這位病人收個一百四十元以後,這位病人就可以離開了。

回去的路上比較麻煩。她一手要推點滴,一手要拿香噴噴的滷菜。如果她忍不住拿出一個鴨翅膀一路走,一路啃,就騰不出手來拿滷菜的塑膠袋了。不過,她可能可以把塑膠袋跟點滴掛在一起,這樣子就沒問題了。

嗯,這位病人既然可以吃滷菜,那她一定也可以吃鐵板燒或牛肉麪。長庚醫院地下室有(大概)十五家小吃店,她為什麼要冒著生命危險,跑到醫院對面來買滷菜呢?復興一路可是龜山最忙的一條街啊!

既然她可以吃滷菜,為什麼還要打點滴?是營養不夠嗎?還是長庚醫院的伙食淡而無味,她拼了命也要出來自己花錢買滷菜,打打牙祭?

既然她可以吃滷菜,那她還住在醫院裏幹嗎?是不是醫院伙食比家裏的好,還是醫院的伙食是世界第一的臺灣全民健保付了,不用她付錢?

長庚醫院的護士是不是不夠,怎麼沒有護士或護理人員陪她出來買滷鴨翅膀?

想來想去,臺灣的全民健保確實是世界第一。

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