HHS investigates Humana for mailer on ObamaCare

posted at 5:15 pm on September 21, 2009 by Ed Morrissey

The Los Angeles Times reports this afternoon that the Department of Health and Human Services has begun an investigation into actions taken by health insurer Humana.  Did they commit claims fraud with Medicare, or unfairly refuse to provide services?   No — they had the temerity to commit the heinous act of free speech with their customers:

The government is investigating a major insurance company for allegedly trying to scare seniors with a mailer warning they could lose important benefits under health care legislation in Congress.

The Health and Human Services Department launched its investigation of Humana after getting a complaint from Sen. Max Baucus, D-Mont., a senior lawmaker usually viewed as a reliable ally of the insurance industry.

“It is wholly unacceptable for insurance companies to mislead seniors regarding any subject — particularly on a subject as important to them, and to the nation, as health care reform,” Baucus said Monday, disclosing the HHS investigation.

Humana Inc., headquartered in Louisville, Ky., is cooperating with the investigation and stopped the mailer earlier this month, company spokesman Tom Noland said Monday.

The Senate committee that Baucus chairs — Finance — will vote this week on a sweeping health care plan that he’s proposed to expand coverage and try to control costs. It would cut Medicare and Medicaid spending by about $500 billion over 10 years, but Baucus says that would lead to greater efficiency, not reduced benefits.

Well, that’s certainly an arguable point, isn’t it?  Just because Baucus says it won’t cut benefits doesn’t make it so.  Humana has the right to make its own case to its customers, and they have the responsibility to weigh the facts and determine who is more correct.  “Senior” doesn’t mean non compos mentis, after all.

In fact, Humana is one of many firms participating in the Medicare Advantage plan, the private-public partnership which 20% of Medicare enrollees use to better manage their medical care and to cover more of their costs.  The Obama administration wants to seriously curtail or end Medicare Advantage — and that’s where a good part of the $500 billion in Medicare cuts originate.  That will strip many seniors of their expanded coverage and force them back to Medicare alone, which they spend good money avoiding at the moment.

It seems to me that Humana is rightly and rationally warning these customers that big and unpleasant changes will be coming with ObamaCare in all its various forms at the moment, including the Baucus plan.  Only a government afraid of its people and afraid of the truth would turn that kind of communication into a crime.  Maybe HHS and the White House should spend a little time re-reading the First Amendment instead of attempting to intimidate people out of the political debate, especially the stakeholders.


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“It is wholly unacceptable for insurance companies to mislead seniors regarding any subject — particularly on a subject as important to them, and to the nation, as health care reform,” Baucus said Monday, disclosing the HHS investigation.

What law does this violate? Or does that not even matter?

hicsuget on September 21, 2009 at 5:18 PM

You’ve got to be kidding me. I can’t take 3 more years of this.

txag92 on September 21, 2009 at 5:18 PM

So the Executive Branch is investigating a private company because they criticized something coming from the Legislative Branch…What is happening to the 3 separate branches of government?

blamegame on September 21, 2009 at 5:19 PM

Texas Medical Association sent out posters today for all physician members to place in exam rooms with big STOP signs to get patient’s attention. Come try to take mine down, bay-beeee.

Marcus on September 21, 2009 at 5:19 PM

Oh, I see…the Chinese have figured it all out for us:
Introducing Oba Mao!

blamegame on September 21, 2009 at 5:20 PM

Double-edged sword; not only does Baucus saying ‘no cuts will occur’ not make it so, but him saying that Humana was misleading seniors doesn’t make *that* so, either.

Maybe an investigation – if it’s honest – will be a good thing. Not only in pointing out that some politicians will try to persecute those that don’t agree with them, but in pointing out that Humana was telling the truth and Baucus & Co. are bald-faced liars.

Midas on September 21, 2009 at 5:21 PM

Shouldn’t we open up an investigation of AARP?

HondaV65 on September 21, 2009 at 5:22 PM

My family has had Humana for over twenty years ( for coverage while in the USA ). They’re GOOD

If this administration goes after them, I will get very, very angry. “Very, very angry” means anything goes.

anything……..

Janos Hunyadi on September 21, 2009 at 5:22 PM

Meanwhile two black panther thugs are still walking free without so much as a cursory glance from the DOJ.

Thanks, 52%, you picked a really great year to exorcise your guilt.

Bishop on September 21, 2009 at 5:23 PM

How DARE private business send out a message contrary to the Presidents agenda!!!

portlandon on September 21, 2009 at 5:23 PM

nothing like shooting yourself in the foot again. Keep them up libbies…we will boot you out.
God Bless

hawkman on September 21, 2009 at 5:23 PM

Oh, I see…the Chinese have figured it all out for us:
Introducing Oba Mao!

blamegame on September 21, 2009 at 5:20 PM

HOLY CRAP! Thanks for that! I’m getting one of those shirts.

LA Times op ed on another racist image in 5, 4, 3, 2, 1 …

HondaV65 on September 21, 2009 at 5:23 PM

HERE IT COMES….The beginning of the assault on free speech.
Tip of the ice berg.

right2bright on September 21, 2009 at 5:24 PM

The Chicago Way.

Basically, we have a bunch of thugs running the government.

Free speech? That’s so 2008.

Norwegian on September 21, 2009 at 5:24 PM

“It is wholly unacceptable for insurance companies to mislead seniors regarding any subject — particularly on a subject as important to them, and to the nation, as health care reform,” Baucus said Monday, disclosing the HHS investigation.

Because that is the job of the Congress, dammit.

trubble on September 21, 2009 at 5:24 PM

Shouldn’t we open up an investigation of AARP?

HondaV65 on September 21, 2009 at 5:22 PM

Your not kidding. I actually picked up my dad’s AARP newsletter and it read like a DNC flyer.

Investigate AARP?…..crickets.

portlandon on September 21, 2009 at 5:24 PM

Hey, I think this bill is pail of runny excrement, and I told my folks so. Is the Senate planning on investigating me?

theCork on September 21, 2009 at 5:24 PM

But union efforts on behalf of Obamacare are fine, right?

BuckeyeSam on September 21, 2009 at 5:24 PM

I ain’t going down without a fight…

d1carter on September 21, 2009 at 5:25 PM

I hate this administration. They are everything they falsely accused the Bush administration of.

Blake on September 21, 2009 at 5:26 PM

“It is wholly unacceptable for insurance companies to mislead seniors regarding any subject…

Unacceptable for Obama to lie to them also.

farright on September 21, 2009 at 5:26 PM

“Very, very angry” means anything goes.

anything……..

Janos Hunyadi on September 21, 2009 at 5:22 PM

This sounds like a very trollish thing to say. Did Kos let you out for the day?

blamegame on September 21, 2009 at 5:26 PM

Bring on the investigation, suckers. Humana, like the rest of America, just has to READ THE BILL and the case makes itself. Schmuck Democrats…

J.J. Sefton on September 21, 2009 at 5:26 PM

And once again the “open and honest government” shows its warm loving embrace by opening its jaws and clamping down on something it doesn’t like.

And you won’t hear nary a peep from the MSM… or Olbermann… but hey, Bush shut down the NYT when they continually leaked military secrets… right?

Skywise on September 21, 2009 at 5:26 PM

Pass the PUDDING!!

Khun Joe on September 21, 2009 at 5:27 PM

You’ve got to be kidding me. I can’t take 3 more years of this.

txag92 on September 21, 2009 at 5:18 PM

Amen. The left complained about Bush and his so-called attacks on our freedoms. These people are OPENLY strong arming private companies! They are using government agencies and money to further their agenda!

PattyJ on September 21, 2009 at 5:28 PM

HOLY CRAP! Thanks for that! I’m getting one of those shirts.

LA Times op ed on another racist image in 5, 4, 3, 2, 1 …

HondaV65 on September 21, 2009 at 5:23 PM

I wonder if we can get bulk discounts?

blamegame on September 21, 2009 at 5:28 PM

I worked for a little bity trucking company where some of the employees were considering going union. The union was allowed to hold meetings during company time at the place of business to sell their agenda and the company was not allowed to talk to the employees and what unionizing would mean to the company’s future. We have some crazy rules. Who in the world would believe that there will be $500 billion in cuts over ten years and it will not impact coverage. People aren’t stupid but the can’t complain about things they don’t know about.

Cindy Munford on September 21, 2009 at 5:30 PM

So Obama can pitch his agenda on every TV station on a weekly basis to scare Americans into support of his bill, but a company at risk of being destroyed by his “reforms” can’t even send mailers to their customers about the same subject?

Weak sauce Obama. Honest and open debate my @ss.

Scrappy on September 21, 2009 at 5:30 PM

I have a policy through these people.

Terrye on September 21, 2009 at 5:31 PM

Humana Inc., headquartered in Louisville, Ky., is cooperating with the investigation and stopped the mailer earlier this month, company spokesman Tom Noland said Monday.

Why did Humana cave so quickly? Surely they have lawyers who could object to this grossly improper use of government power. Are they really that afraid?

AZCoyote on September 21, 2009 at 5:32 PM

Still waiting for Obama to put all this healthcare debate/ dealings with private companies on C-SPAN.

portlandon on September 21, 2009 at 5:32 PM

Actually, I don’t think I support this story. I’ve been reading that healthcare insurance HAS fired up seniors.

So I’ll stay out of this one.

AnninCA on September 21, 2009 at 5:32 PM

Texas Medical Association sent out posters today for all physician members to place in exam rooms with big STOP signs to get patient’s attention. Come try to take mine down, bay-beeee.

Marcus on September 21, 2009 at 5:19 PM

You mean a professional organization is finally taking a stand against his abomination? About time.

Blake on September 21, 2009 at 5:32 PM

This is atrocious. If true, it certainly should result in Holder’s removal, and that of anyone in the White House who instigated it, including Osama Obama if he’s involved, which I’m certain he is. Baucus should resign.

Our Constitution has lasted for well over 200 years. At this rate, it will be destroyed in less than a year, unless someone in D.C. wakes the hell up and takes action.

Fat chance of that.

MrScribbler on September 21, 2009 at 5:33 PM

Chavez getting socialism envy.

the_nile on September 21, 2009 at 5:33 PM

I am stupid. I keep thinking that the Marxist scum bag Commie nit wit Nigerian-born Team Obama (duly crowned in a Greek Temple) cannot be any dumber than they are – but then they pull yet another dumb stunt and I am yet again floored by their stupidity! Did The Messiah have too many recess breaks at the Commie Allah Mosque School he went to in Kenya where he was born?

Cinday Blackburn on September 21, 2009 at 5:34 PM

Ed,

I grow to love you more every day! Thanks for always reporting truthfully about the Medicare cuts, especially MA. I got a call from my aunt in tears as she heard about this and is scared of losing her MA. She is a cancer survivor and I don’t appreciate any of my relatives, especially now that all of my aunts & uncles are on Medicare, being scared. This is not only painful and scary for them, but no one wants their family to be afraid. I cry when I think of good old Dr. Ezikiel Emmanual and his dementia patient comments as I am POA for my uncle, a WWII vet & former civilian Navy Supervisor who has Alzheimer’s. I am at least a little grateful that he doesn’t know what the country he served his whole adult life is going to do to him.

margategop517 on September 21, 2009 at 5:34 PM

This sounds like a very trollish thing to say. Did Kos let you out for the day?

blamegame on September 21, 2009 at 5:26 PM

Noob- Janos has been a regular commenter here for years. Is this your first post or something?

Fishoutofwater on September 21, 2009 at 5:34 PM

They got it from Oblahma. He said he would strip 500 million from Medicare. He just a few days ago striped 1.4 billion from Oncologists and cardiologists.

seven on September 21, 2009 at 5:35 PM

If they don’t want to be called fascists, these big government clowns should freaking stop ACTING like fascists.

manofaiki on September 21, 2009 at 5:35 PM

blamegame on September 21, 2009 at 5:20 PM

I want one of those shirts!

MrScribbler on September 21, 2009 at 5:36 PM

Can we call this suppression of free speech fascism?

rbj on September 21, 2009 at 5:36 PM

Can we start calling them fascists now? How about communists?

darwin on September 21, 2009 at 5:37 PM

Why did Humana cave so quickly? Surely they have lawyers who could object to this grossly improper use of government power. Are they really that afraid?

Because of what Obama could do to them if they don’t, ahem, go along with what’s “best” for the country. If Obama controls the bulk of the health care reimbursements, do you think that he’ll look kindly on those that didn’t “support” him? Companies are afraid of Obama because he could cause them lots of trouble, which is exactly the way that he wants it.

volnation on September 21, 2009 at 5:37 PM

Actually, I don’t think I support this story. I’ve been reading that healthcare insurance HAS fired up seniors.

So I’ll stay out of this one.

AnninCA on September 21, 2009 at 5:32 PM

http://michellemalkin.com/2009/09/21/look-whos-behind-the-big-insurance-protests/

a capella on September 21, 2009 at 5:38 PM

The Congressman from Louisville, John Yarmuth, is a Blue Dog Democrat with an unsafe seat, who has already said he will not vote for H.R. 3200 because of the Medicare cuts. Humana employs hundreds of people in his district. This investigation will really put him on the hot seat politically.

Way to go, HHS!

rockmom on September 21, 2009 at 5:39 PM

It is criminal to disagree with your leaders, because to do so would be to lie, because your leaders are certain that they are right. All else is misleading information delivered with clearly evil intent. After all, our leaders are clearly good and pure. To oppose our leaders is not only ciminaly evil it is also insane, because if you were in your right mind you would agree with your betters. But don’t worry. Your benevolent leaders will come up with a program to deal with all non-right thinkers as they are not only a danger to themselves but also to society. Fortunately our leaders are humble enough to guide us through such dangerous times and to protect us from malcontents that would keep us from the great utopian society as we all become transformed daily into the image of our gody paragons. Children are the blessing that will recite with devotion all that our dear leader bestows. How enlightened to take not only society but a whole generation forward. All praise, for not to praise would be insufficiently supportive, of the ideals expoused like honey from the lip of our own demigods.

AnotherOpinion on September 21, 2009 at 5:39 PM

Noob- Janos has been a regular commenter here for years. Is this your first post or something?

Fishoutofwater on September 21, 2009 at 5:34 PM

No, second or third post. Thanks for your concern for Janos, but the comment appeared to imply something that most of us wouldn’t sign on for. Maybe I’m wrong, and it’s just the way it was said.

blamegame on September 21, 2009 at 5:39 PM

HHS ordered the company to immediately halt any such mailings, and remove any related materials from its Web site. In the letter, the government also said it may take other action against Humana.

They’re blatantly threatenting them. Humana should use all it’s resources to publicize this fasicist action far and wide. Fight back Humana.

darwin on September 21, 2009 at 5:40 PM

blamegame on September 21, 2009 at 5:26 PM

“anything” means anything within the limits of the law, which includes getting off my butt to work as a volunteer for anyone who will stop this criminal administration.

Fishoutofwater on September 21, 2009 at 5:34 PM

Thank you, Fish. Apparently some people have Violent Thoughts.

Janos Hunyadi on September 21, 2009 at 5:41 PM

Are they really that afraid?

AZCoyote on September 21, 2009 at 5:32 PM

They might not be afraid, but I sure am. Everyday, it’s just one more thing……….

Is Hugo Chavez one of Obama’s Czar’s yet?

Knucklehead on September 21, 2009 at 5:42 PM

Baucus is actually really, really close to being onto something here…

It is wholly unacceptable for insurance companies Barack Obama to mislead seniors regarding any subject — particularly on a subject as important to them, and to the nation, as health care reform

But then, Democrats aren’t really as concerned about a president “misleading” the American public as they pretend to be.

malclave on September 21, 2009 at 5:43 PM

portlandon on September 21, 2009 at 5:24 PM

Absolutly! I am at the age that I get AARP mailings now on a regular basis. But because of their political leanings I have no intent of ever giving them a dime for anything. In fact, I am going to strt sending them back every one of their “postage paid” reply cards and envolopes, without filling in anything on them.

MikeA on September 21, 2009 at 5:43 PM

Sadly, this will leave no time for an investigation of ACORN, or the NEA, or the SEIU.

Vashta.Nerada on September 21, 2009 at 5:43 PM

blamegame on September 21, 2009 at 5:39 PM

I don’t know you, but if you don’t get off my case I will get very, very angry at you……..

and when I want your advice on wording, I’ll ask for it.

Janos Hunyadi on September 21, 2009 at 5:43 PM

Thank you, Fish. Apparently some people have Violent Thoughts.

Janos Hunyadi on September 21, 2009 at 5:41 PM

Thanks for the clarification…things are easily taken out of context and posted all over the libtards’ boards…

blamegame on September 21, 2009 at 5:45 PM

Is Hugo Chavez Obama one of Obama’s Hugo Chavez’ Czar’s yet?

Knucklehead on September 21, 2009 at 5:42 PM

FIFY

MikeA on September 21, 2009 at 5:45 PM

I grow to love you more every day! Thanks for always reporting truthfully about the Medicare cuts, especially MA. I got a call from my aunt in tears as she heard about this and is scared of losing her MA. She is a cancer survivor and I don’t appreciate any of my relatives, especially now that all of my aunts & uncles are on Medicare, being scared. This is not only painful and scary for them, but no one wants their family to be afraid. I cry when I think of good old Dr. Ezikiel Emmanual and his dementia patient comments as I am POA for my uncle, a WWII vet & former civilian Navy Supervisor who has Alzheimer’s. I am at least a little grateful that he doesn’t know what the country he served his whole adult life is going to do to him.

margategop517 on September 21, 2009 at 5:34 PM

My 89-year-old WWII vet father passed away a few weeks ago. He had many procedures late in life that extended his life at least 5-10 years, including a quadruple bypass at age 85 from which he completely recovered. He was a retired physician and this whole debate was driving him nuts. I miss him, but I’m glad he didn’t live too much longer only to die from rationed care. Now I have to worry about my mom, and even my older siblings who do not have much money and will probably be totally dependent on Medicare as they move into their 70s.

rockmom on September 21, 2009 at 5:45 PM

When are we going to start seeing some free speech lawsuits against these administration officials? While there are some immunity issues, there has to be some kind of remedy for such blatant free speech suppression.

And why would Humana stop sending out those mailers? I want to see some companies finally start standing up to Congress and the President when their constitutional rights are interfered with.

Conservative in NOVA on September 21, 2009 at 5:45 PM

Scrappy on September 21, 2009 at 5:30 PM

That’s about it. President Pantload can show his mug on tv three times a week, all the while telling the most blatant of lies, but when you dare to refute those lies the feds step in and squash you.

This is getting out of control, Ogabe is acting like a Chavez wannabe and his sycophantic, lickspittle, media-whores are covering for him.

Bishop on September 21, 2009 at 5:46 PM

The leftwingers are starting to plan protests outside health insurers place of business. Whether it takes off or not, I don’t know, but there are attempts to move in this direction. Supposed to be some rally’s tomorrow.

Health insurers make about 3-4% profit margin. These are not a handful off big companies operating in collusion against their customers. They are in stiff competition, and while opportunities certainly exist, the reality is that the regulatory structures and legal worries at every level have more to do with cost than anything else. I’m glad to see Ed is bringing up the slim profit margins frequently here. It’s worth repeating, often.

It’s also clear that many people on the left flank of this issue are not about competition, as they now claim to be. This is about destroying the health insurance business for many.

stldave on September 21, 2009 at 5:47 PM

We are quickly becoming a pure totalitarian state and the mindless masses just don’t seem to care. Maybe it’s time to jettison this poor sick country.

rplat on September 21, 2009 at 5:51 PM

Humana should continue to send out mailers. If those in power want to stifle 1st Amendment rights, then Humana should be willing to send out another mailer with that information and name names.

GarandFan on September 21, 2009 at 5:51 PM

Why did Humana cave so quickly? Surely they have lawyers who could object to this grossly improper use of government power. Are they really that afraid?

AZCoyote on September 21, 2009 at 5:32 PM

That’s what I thought, a simple “shove it” would have gotten them a lot of support.
But then remember Reagan’s warning:

“The nine most terrifying words in the English language are: ‘I’m from the government and I’m here to help.’”

They know once the government gets involved they can tie them up for years, the government has unlimited resources to make your life miserable.
Time to link what I believe is the most infamous misuse of power by any president against an ordinary person (of course the president was a democrat):
Link

right2bright on September 21, 2009 at 5:53 PM

blamegame on September 21, 2009 at 5:45 PM

are you Slow? What “context”? Who are you to ask for “clarification”? You were the one who took something “out of context”?

This is a blog about politics. I’m willing to anything political to stop Obama from ruining Humana–and politics is a wide, deep sea.

Janos Hunyadi on September 21, 2009 at 5:53 PM

What law does this violate? Or does that not even matter?

hicsuget on September 21, 2009 at 5:18 PM

Obama can break the law with impunity. Opponents to the Obama administration don’t have to break the law in order to be punished.

In the USSA, the law violates you.

Daggett on September 21, 2009 at 5:54 PM

I don’t know you, but if you don’t get off my case I will get very, very angry at you……..

and when I want your advice on wording, I’ll ask for it.

Janos Hunyadi on September 21, 2009 at 5:43 PM

Janos, the guy was, in his own way, doing you a favor by pointing out the possibility that your post could be interpreted as a Kilgore Trout type. Consider what your post would look like if excerpted and carried over to the DailyKos with appropriate “commentary”. How would they pitch your words?

Everyone is hyper-aware of “nuance” since KT crapped a bunch of racism on this site and got banned.

It’s like 9/11. Suddenly, air travel isn’t as fun or convenient as it used to be.

Or better is that ad where someone in the glass shop drops a vase with a big boom, and every customer in the shop draws a handgun and starts covering everyone else briefly before relaxing and putting the heat away.

unclesmrgol on September 21, 2009 at 5:54 PM

Children are the blessing that will recite with devotion all that our dear leader bestows.

AnotherOpinion on September 21, 2009 at 5:39 PM

You’re obviously a racist. If you’d been paying attention, you’d know that children are a punishment… thus spake Obama.

malclave on September 21, 2009 at 5:54 PM

rockmom on September 21, 2009 at 5:45 PM

Sorry to here about the passing of one of our finest…

right2bright on September 21, 2009 at 5:55 PM

Eh, the first Amendment is overrated anyway…in fact, who needs that dusty old bill of rights….

God HELP this country

ihasurnominashun on September 21, 2009 at 5:57 PM

My family has had Humana for over twenty years ( for coverage while in the USA ). They’re GOOD

If this administration goes after them, I will get very, very angry. “Very, very angry” means anything goes.

anything……..

Janos Hunyadi on September 21, 2009 at 5:22 PM

They have gone after them, and no company has the resources to fight them…that is the problem, the government has endless resources to make your life miserable.
One of the huge problems have having basically one party rule…they can do what they want to whomever they want.

right2bright on September 21, 2009 at 5:59 PM

Let me see if I have this correct. We have private companies exercising free speech(bad) and a public agency like the NEA using MY MONEY to campaign for a political goal of the President.

CWforFreedom on September 21, 2009 at 6:01 PM

unclesmrgol on September 21, 2009 at 5:54 PM

yes, uncle, I’ve noticed the difference the past few days. But KOS people will take ANYTHING out of context, or usually they’ll just make sh_t up. It’s like dealing with Russia or Iran or Chavez, etc: Being nice just don’t work.

We’re talking about an insurance company and another faux-investigation. What are my options–or anyone’s here?

‘his own way’ was patronizing and snarky, which you and I can do without.

Janos Hunyadi on September 21, 2009 at 6:01 PM

What many people don’t realize is that the reimbursement rate for Tricare ~ the military’s health plan for ALL active and retired members ~ is directly tied to what Medicare pays. When this last round of substantial Medicare reimbursement rate cuts went through, not only did seniors lose “choice” when doctors dropped out, the military did, too.

Medicare, Tricare cuts

Appearing on page 10A of PNJ’s June 27 edition was three-quarters of a column inch reporting that the Senate failed to deal with the pending cut in Medicare payments to practitioners. That was 10.6 percent on July 1, but the story is bigger.

Payments to doctors under Tricare – the Department of Defense’s health-care system – are tied to Medicare. That directly affects active-duty, Guard, Reserve and retired military beneficiaries. A fix for this annually recurring threat was attempted late last year, but only delayed the cut from January to July.

On June 12, the Senate defeated a cloture vote on S. 3101, which would have fixed the Medicare/Tricare problem. One option remained before the Senate holiday recess. The House had just passed H.R. 6331, which would have effected a fix. What the Senate did was defeat a measure to bring to vote concurrence on H.R. 6331. No changes could be made; the House was already adjourned and its agreement would have been required.

tree hugging sister on September 21, 2009 at 6:02 PM

Criminals are running the country. Azz-clowns are driving the bus. Drunks are locking the doors. Thieves are collecting taxes. And last but not least… Obama is the president.

Griz on September 21, 2009 at 6:05 PM

I don’t have a problem with him investigating Humana

…as long as he investigates AARP right along side them.

/s

Lockstein13 on September 21, 2009 at 6:10 PM

right2bright on September 21, 2009 at 5:59 PM

Yes, people have complained about us turning into Cuba or China ( and that could eventually happen, as a Worst Case Scenario ) but what we’re headed for is being India or Mexico or some other ‘one party dominant’ semi-democracy where one political party is almost always in control of goverment

Only occasionally, when the dominant party REALLY screws up, does the always-disorganized opposition party or coalition take over–and only until the next election, when the dominant party gets back its usual position of power

Ireland is like this, as Fianna Fail has rule the country most of the time since 1921, but the USA is not a small neutral country formerly-poor partitioned country…….

Janos Hunyadi on September 21, 2009 at 6:11 PM

It’s disturbing enough that this administration would use taxpayer money to investigate something that is clearly protected by the 1st Amendment. But when you read about it with another story also circulated this week, that Obama would not be opposed to a newspaper bailout….well that is just terrifying. If the government helps finance the media, there won’t even be the chance that the major newspapers would even attempt to criticize the government. Not that they do right now anyway, but…Once they’ve been bailed out, their employer wouldn’t allow it.

CarolinaGirl6 on September 21, 2009 at 6:12 PM

…could be interpreted as a Kilgore Trout…unclesmrgol on September 21, 2009 at 5:54 PM

uncle is all over it.

Janos Hunyadi on September 21, 2009 at 6:01 PM

I agree with you. All the libtard boards take everything out of context. This just means we shouldn’t give them easy targets. I also agree that I probably jumped the gun with the “snarkiness” of my first post. But really…I don’t feel the need to study the usernames to figure out who has been here long enough to make posting policy.
You clarified your original post, and I appreciate it.

blamegame on September 21, 2009 at 6:15 PM

[The bill] would cut Medicare and Medicaid spending by about $500 billion over 10 years, but Baucus says that would lead to greater efficiency, not reduced benefits.

I’ve got an idea: Let’s cut Bacus’s salary and staff expenditures by a similar percentage. It should increase his efficiency, not reduce any benefits he provides to his constituents. (If he provides any, that is.)

Socratease on September 21, 2009 at 6:17 PM

Nice little right to free speech you got there. Shame if anything happened to it….

Wethal on September 21, 2009 at 6:17 PM

“It is wholly unacceptable for insurance companies the government to mislead seniors regarding any subject — particularly on a subject as important to them, and to the nation, as health care reform,” Baucus said Monday, disclosing the HHS investigation.

Ok,, insurance companies can’t lie but President’s can??
I would hope this insurance company fights back and takes them to court. There has got to be a law somewhere in America to protect people from these kinds of practices from our government.

JellyToast on September 21, 2009 at 6:22 PM

I don’t feel the need to study the usernames to figure out who has been here long enough to make posting policy.

blamegame on September 21, 2009 at 6:15 PM

That doesn’t make sense, and I can see that the Snarkiness is strong in you. Try a policy of STFU unless you know what you’re talking about–that should work.

Janos Hunyadi on September 21, 2009 at 6:22 PM

I’d love to see the actual mailer under investigation that is “scaring” senior citizens.

blamegame on September 21, 2009 at 6:22 PM

Janos Hunyadi on September 21, 2009 at 6:22 PM

I’m not here to pick a fight with you. Get over yourself.

blamegame on September 21, 2009 at 6:23 PM

Ok,, insurance companies can’t lie but President’s can??
I would hope this insurance company fights back and takes them to court. There has got to be a law somewhere in America to protect people from these kinds of practices from our government.

JellyToast on September 21, 2009 at 6:22 PM

Stole my thunder. +1

PrincipledPilgrim on September 21, 2009 at 6:24 PM

I’ve reached the point at which I would consider it a miracle if Humana fought back. No one fights back. It’s not that hard, just takes a little nerve. When did business lose their nerve, confidence. Fight these fascists!

rrpjr on September 21, 2009 at 6:29 PM

blamegame on September 21, 2009 at 6:23 PM

You’ve already done what you claim you aren’t doing–and you can’t resist continuing to do it.

Don’t tell me what to post or when, or what to do. Clear?

Janos Hunyadi on September 21, 2009 at 6:29 PM

Is it time for our 2nd War of Independence yet? Wake me up when it’s time to end the tyranny.

chicagojedi on September 21, 2009 at 6:31 PM

You’re obviously a racist. If you’d been paying attention, you’d know that children are a punishment… thus spake Obama.

malclave on September 21, 2009 at 5:54 PM

And thus the government will take care of all of those little punishments for you. No, the only sense in which children are a blesing is the ease with which they can be made to adhere, comply, and expouse to the party line. Benificently, the stubborn, misguided, aged who drain the wealth of society on wastefull health wasteage will gradualy, naturaly, be removed from the society to come. For it is our leader’s kingdom, on mother earth as it is in their heavenly vision.

Remember children, if you hear an adult contradict our leaders and they try to impose rules on you, then turn them in for a reward from your teachers so you can do what you want on a happy planet.

AnotherOpinion on September 21, 2009 at 6:32 PM

Meanwhile two black panther thugs are still walking free without so much as a cursory glance from the DOJ.

Thanks, 52%, you picked a really great year to exorcise your guilt.

Bishop on September 21, 2009 at 5:23 PM

If the DOJ was honest, they call for an all out investigation of Black Panther voting intimidation and ACORN. The present DOJ is as corrupt as any mafia family. In fact, I’d say the mafia has more honor than the DOJ, or the FBI for that matter. I don’t trust ANY government department any more.

Jeff from WI on September 21, 2009 at 6:33 PM

This kind of behavior is absolutely incredible. It’s obvious that this administration regards the law as something to be evaded instead of obeyed.

hachiban on September 21, 2009 at 6:39 PM

Janos Hunyadi on September 21, 2009 at 6:29 PM

Relax. I tried being nice. See my post at 6:15.

blamegame on September 21, 2009 at 6:39 PM

Remember children, if you hear an adult contradict our leaders and they try to impose rules on you, then turn them in for a reward from your teachers so you can do what you want on a happy planet.

AnotherOpinion on September 21, 2009 at 6:32 PM

The sad thing is…..we’re almost there: This Humana thing is part strong-arm for a government policy and part of a continuing effort ( on many fronts ) to silence opposition.

Democracies don’t allow that, and part of my anger about this latest move against Humana is that’s one more anti-democratic effort by an anti-democratic government

Clinton was…..Not Good, but Obama makes Clinton look like a semi-saint ( a semi-saint with a hyperactive Johnson )

Janos Hunyadi on September 21, 2009 at 6:39 PM

It seems they only want to investigate the things that may hinder their agenda. They scream and pout when someone else investigates real criminal activity (i.e. ACORN).
This is called corruption.

blamegame on September 21, 2009 at 6:45 PM

blamegame on September 21, 2009 at 6:39 PM

It’s interesting that people like you, when they get nervous, tell others to ‘relax’.

Keep backing away slowly and you’ll get where you want to be.

blamegame on September 21, 2009 at 6:45 PM

Your only post on this thread which is on topic rather than aimed at me.

Janos Hunyadi on September 21, 2009 at 6:46 PM

This kind of behavior is absolutely incredible. It’s obvious that this administration regards the law as something to be evaded instead of obeyed.

hachiban on September 21, 2009 at 6:39 PM

Silly people. Laws are for subjects not for leaders, who are too important to be held back in the great task to which they have been called. Besides, our leaders are pure and don’t need laws applied to them since laws are only for bad people. You don’t think our leaders are unpure or bad do you, citizen?

(Anything you say can be used against you but we don’t usualy bother since disappearing you is so much easier.)

AnotherOpinion on September 21, 2009 at 6:50 PM

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