Medical bills are pushing more Americans into severe “financial distress” even if they have insurance, according to a top medical journal. These bills force hundreds of thousands into bankruptcy each year.
What’s so galling is that while Americans struggle to pay their bills, freeloaders from other countries get the same care at no cost by gaming our generous open-door hospital policies. They take a flight to the United States, go straight to an emergency room and get pacemakers, chemotherapy and other expensive care, leaving American taxpayers to foot their bills.
Evan Levine, cardiologist at a Bronx teaching hospital, recently treated a Trinidad resident who had learned his pacemaker battery was about to give out. He came to New York to avoid paying for cardiac care back home. Cost to him? Zero, aside from airfare.
It’s a common practice, according to a medical-device salesman who services hospitals in the New York area. He gets calls for pacemakers destined for patients from South America or Central America who fly in and take a bus directly to the hospital.
The bill for one pacemaker patient can reach $96,000. John Q. Public gets stuck with it.
Taxpayers cough up an estimated $2 billion a year for a program called Emergency Medicaid, according to Kaiser Health News. It covers everyone unable to pay for emergency medical care, including illegal immigrants and residents of other countries here for medical freebies.
No one should be left to die on the street. But forcing taxpayers to pay for foreigners here to rip us off goes too far.
Federal law requires that hospitals help all patients who come to the emergency room in labor or with a life-threatening condition. Lenient regulations are turning this into a gravy train.
Hospitals cannot ask about immigration status at any time, and they’re barred from asking patients if they can pay or have insurance until after the patient has been helped. Every ER posts signs telling patients they have a right to be treated, no matter what.
Noah Schreibman, pulmonologist and critical care physician in Delray, Fla., explains that “if someone is short of breath, has chest pains, coughs up blood or recently lost 20 pounds, they’ll get admitted.”
Please stop holding vigils. Right now they serve no purpose other than to be a target for those that want to kill in the name of their god or their perceived notions of racism. If you want to do something, educate yourselves on the threats. Learn who the enemy is. Yes, enemy. We are at war, and the bigger picture must be seen.
The first thing to be understood is who the enemy is. The current administration has done a great disservice to the American people by hiding the truth of the agenda of those killing Americans on American soil. They aren’t thugs, creating chaos because they are mentally unstable. They are Muslims performing jihad because their doctrine directs them to. The sooner this is admitted; the sooner we will win.
Unfortunately, Muslims in America who believe in sharia law, and who follow the footsteps of their prophet Muhammad have joined forces with disgruntled members of groups such as Black Lives Matter, the New Black Panther Party and the Nation of Islam. This is important because of Muhammad’s history.
To understand how history is repeating itself, one must understand it to begin with. Muslims believe there is only one God, Allah, who through the Prophet Muhammad revealed the words of the Quran. The traditions and sayings of the prophet are contained in the Sunnah and the Hadiths. This making the trilogy of books most important to Muslims. In order for a Muslim to be “good”, they must imitate his life, as prescribed by those books.
In summary, the early years of Muhammad, described as his years in Mecca, he was peaceful and while he desired to convert others to Islam, he accepted those that practiced their own religion, which led to a very small number of Muslims. On his hijra to Yathrib (Medina), Muhammad rejected the offer of peaceful co-existence. His religion was obviously intended to dominate others, not to be equal. It was in Medina that Islam became a political and military ideology. Before his death, non-believers (infidels) were evicted or enslaved, and converted under the threat of death if they did not.
“Everything I told you then is true. … But the interpreter there told me that a faithful woman must not use words like sex and rape. Words like that would dishonor my husband and our family. She also said that I was a blasphemer, because I went to the police. No woman should report her own husband. The husband must be honored.” — “Sali” in an apparent suicide note to her lawyer, Alexander Stevens.
“I am aware of statements in which interpreters have pressed and supposedly said to Christians on the way to the police or beforehand: If you complain, you can forget your application for asylum. I often noticed that statements were retracted because Christians were threatened.” — Paulus Kurt, Central Committee of Eastern Christians in Germany (ZOCD).
“The interpreters are neither employed by the Federal Agency, nor are they in any way sworn in to the legal system of the Federal Republic of Germany. Ultimately, examination of the asylum application is left solely to these interpreters… In our view, a decision-making process such as this, which is practiced on a massive scale, is not in keeping with due process.” — Open letter from employees of Germany’s Federal Agency for Migration and Refugees.
Alexander Stevens is a lawyer at a Munich law firm specializing in sexual offenses. In his recent book, Sex in Court, he describes some of his strangest and most shocking cases. One such case raises the question: What do you do when interpreters working for the police and courts lie and manipulate? As no one monitors translators, it is likely that in many instances, the dishonesty of interpreters goes undetected — Stevens’ book chronicles the devastating effects one dishonest interpreter had on a case.
The parents of a Syrian girl, “Sali,” had promised their daughter to a man named Hassan, who, at the time, was still living in Syria. The arrangement was seen as mutually beneficial: Sali’s parents would receive money and Hassan would be allowed to enter Germany. Sali would never willingly have married a man 34 years her senior, but the family’s honor required it. However, Sali did not receive any benefits from this arrangement. Hassan’s interest in Sali was apparently confined to her body. He forced Sali to perform all kinds of sexual practices several times a day, and brutally abused the girl in the process.
Sali was unable to hide the fact that she took no pleasure in these rapes and she became ill, so Hassan reproached her and “openly threatened to demand a large compensation payment from her family, for the cost of the wedding reception and lost pleasures of love.” Sali sought help from a women’s shelter, where an employee took her to a lawyer: Stevens. At the shelter, Sali described her misfortune, but was careful repeatedly to come to her husband’s defense. She was more worried about her family’s honor, should Hassan decided to divorce her, than about herself.
“After two hours of painstaking depictions of sexual abuse, corporal punishment, and mental humiliation,” Stevens writes, “I had no doubt that everything had actually happened as she said.”
The next day, Stevens tried to get an appointment for questioning with the police and an interpreter. But he was surprised when he got to the shelter. Sali was like a different person. Suddenly, she wanted nothing to do with him or the women’s shelter employee.
Sometime later, an employee of the women’s shelter sent him a letter that Sali had left behind for him. It read:
Dear Mr. Stevens,
I am very sorry to have caused you so much inconvenience. Please believe me when I say I did not want to. Everything I told you then is true. I also wanted to make a statement to the police regarding what I told you. But the interpreter there told me that a faithful woman must not use words like sex and rape. Words like that would dishonor my husband and our family. She also said that I was a blasphemer, because I went to the police. No woman should report her own husband. The husband must be honored. I did not know what to do, Mr. Stevens. Because I think she is right. I should never have disgraced my husband and my family. Therefore, I would ask you not to tell anyone. I do not want to create any more trouble for my family and my husband’s family. Please forgive me. You were very good to me.
By this time, Sali was already dead. According to the employee from the women’s shelter, the police suspected suicide.
‘Lock her up! Lock her up! Lock her up!”
Republicans convened in Cleveland this week and rhythmically chanted for the incarceration of Hillary Clinton, the candidate the Democrats will nominate for president next week in Philadelphia. Some pundits found the Republicans’ new slogan harsh and extreme.
But who are the real extremists here?
In what must be an historical first, Democrats are about to anoint a contender for the White House who faces at least four federal investigations and a serious, private anti-corruption lawsuit. Even after the Watergate break-in, Richard Nixon’s legal woes were not this grave at this stage of the 1972 election.
Just days after the FBI and Justice Department whitewashed Clinton’s abuse of 2,113 classified e-mails on her unauthorized, unsecure, do-it-yourself computer server, the State Department resumed its own investigation of this matter. State previously yielded to the FBI’s probe. With that exercise concluded, State once again is trying to learn if Clinton and her top staffers violated the department’s rules for handling national secrets.
“Because neither Hillary nor her aides are currently State employees, it is at least somewhat unusual to reopen an investigation,” former U.N. ambassador John Bolton told me. “If they were still employed, disciplinary action could include cancelling their security clearances, lowering their [government pay]-grade, or even being fired. None of those are now possible, except for revoking security clearances if they still have them, and flagging their personnel records so that State and/or other agencies don’t hire them in the future.”
If Clinton loses her security clearance, this would shatter what little remains of her claim that her tenure at State qualifies her for the presidency. And if she survived such a wholesale implosion of her credibility, it’s hard to imagine how she could function without clearance, nor even claim that she deserves it.
“A president must have access to classified information in order to make national-security decisions,” said former State Department spokesman Richard Grenell. “If Hillary is punished with a security-clearance revocation beyond January 2017, she should step aside. She would be putting U.S. national security at risk, again.”
Some in the media are alarmed that the just-approved Republican-party platform takes a positive view of fossil fuels. “The platform tosses aside an environmental regulatory structure built on congressional legislation and judicial rulings over more than four decades,” wrote Steven Mufson of the Washington Post. It’s no surprise that mainstream media and its friends on the political left would feel that way — especially after they have been vilifying oil, gas, and especially coal for more than a generation. It’s on that last fuel that the platform takes perhaps its most remarkable position, declaring coal “an abundant, clean, affordable, reliable domestic energy resource.”
It doesn’t meet with the approval of the environmentalist Left — but it does happen to be true.
Although this Environmental Protection Agency never acknowledges it, a slew of state-of-the art technologies has led to dramatic reductions in emissions from coal-fired power plants. In this respect, coal is quite clean. Since 1970, emissions of key pollutants per kilowatt hour (electric) have fallen 89 percent. Use of low-NOx boilers, selective catalytic reduction, wet and dry electrostatic precipitators, scrubbers, and sorbent injection, while not popular topics at cocktail parties, have led to huge reductions in genuine pollutants that impact human health under certain concentrations and exposures.
In 2007, during my tenure as chairman of the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality, I signed the first permit for a lignite-fired coal-power plant in more than two decades. The elaborate emissions controls for this new plant have achieved amazing efficiencies comparable to those of plants powered by natural gas, and they continue to reduce real emissions. Yet EPA’s Clean Power Plan may force closure of this modern plant, trashing the hundreds of millions invested in reducing real pollutants.
Although now viewed by the EPA as dirty carbon pollution, carbon dioxide (CO2) lacks any of the characteristics of a real pollutant. CO2 is an odorless, invisible, and beneficial natural gas and the catalyst for photosynthesis, the most vital energy conversion in our biosphere. How soon we forget eight-grade science! CO2’s life-amplifying potency is why greenhouses pump CO2 to levels over four times that of the natural concentration in the air we breathe.
Officialdom’s constant use of the word “clean” masks the many details about energy that keep the lights on. In most cases, “clean energy” is a general designation for low-to-zero carbon-energy resources, the most prevalent forms being wind and solar power. The public has been led to believe that coal and other fossil fuels are dirty and that wind and solar are clean.
Cleveland — For the better part of four days, the Republican National Convention had been less about Donald Trump than about the flotsam of the Republican party left in his wake — and the attempts of its members to cobble together a life raft in the middle of an angry sea.
Then, for an hour and 15 minutes on Thursday night, Trump brought a modicum of normality to the proceedings with remarks that were tightly scripted and tightly focused, even if they were delivered in a shouted staccato. He took the stage wearing a gleaming red tie as the delegates on the floor broke out into a chant: “Trump! Trump! Trump!”
Trump’s appearance, which followed a flawless introduction from his daughter Ivanka, brought an unfamiliar feeling of order to the convention, and on stage he promised to do the same for the country and the world. He cast President Obama’s administration as the cause of the chaos that has roiled the country for the past several years, from the murder of American citizens at the hands of illegal immigrants to the assassination of law-enforcement officers on city streets.
“The crime and violence that today afflicts our nation will soon come to an end,” he said. “Beginning on January 20th, 2017, safety will be restored.”
As if on cue, when a protester began to disrupt his remarks, police whisked her off the floor before the crowd could figure out what was happening. Looking down on the kerfuffle, Trump ad-libbed, “How great are our police and how great is Cleveland?” The crowd went wild.
Trump also faulted the president and the Democratic nominee, Hillary Clinton, for sowing turmoil around the world. From the nuclear deal with Iran to the non-enforcement of the “red line” in Syria to the murders of four Americans in Benghazi, the U.S. has been suckered and embarrassed on the international stage, he said. When he made mention of the terrorist attack on the American consulate in Benghazi, the crowd began to chant, “Lock her up!” Trump, in a remarkable display of restraint, raised an index finger to silence them. “Let’s defeat her in November,” he said. The crowd erupted in cheers.
The speech, delivered from a black-and-white teleprompter in the center of Quicken Loans Arena, dragged near the end, and included some 4,500 words. But Trump stuck almost entirely to the script. Both in substance and in style, the speech exhibited a discipline at odds with a convention otherwise characterized by disarray.
Just hours before Trump took the stage, a pro-Clinton super PAC, Correct the Record, obtained and leaked the transcript of his speech. It was the capstone to a convention that has been defined by the party’s squabbling disunity, enhanced by the Trump campaign’s disorganization and repeated political miscalculations.
There was plagiarism, there were grudge matches, and there were more than a few awkward embraces.
Janet Creighton, a longtime Ohio GOP official who formerly served in the George W. Bush administration, was attending her fifth convention as a Republican delegate. Creighton says she has always worn red, white, and blue during all four days of past conventions, but decided not to this year. “This is a different Republican convention. It doesn’t have the same Republican feel,” she says. “People are holding their breath because we’ve never done it like this before.” She smiles and shrugs her shoulders. “It’s his convention,” she says of Trump. “He can do what he wants.”
Trump, of course, has done just that. The campaign’s worst self-inflicted wound this week came the first night of the convention, when Melania Trump delivered an impressive speech that, it soon turned out, included passages lifted from first lady Michelle Obama’s address to the Democratic convention in 2008. The incident dominated cable-news headlines for nearly 48 hours as the Trump campaign denied and demurred before finally issuing a mea culpa from an unknown speechwriter mid-day Wednesday. In the interim, talking heads denounced the campaign’s amateurishness and incompetence. “The highlight of tonight’s activities was Melania Trump’s speech,” Republican strategist Steve Schmidt told MSNBC. “This turns this night into a catastrophe.” Fox News’s Bill O’Reilly took to the airwaves the next night to declare that the speechwriter should be fired. “There’s no excuse for plagiarism,” he said. “There’s just none. You can’t do it.”
“Turkey has a large armed force, professional armed forces and… I am certain they will continue as a committed and strong NATO ally.”
On Wednesday, NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg insisted that the purge of thousands in the Turkish military – including a third of the serving generals – did not weaken the military.
Stoltenberg told Reuters, “Turkey has a large armed force, professional armed forces and… I am certain they will continue as a committed and strong NATO ally.”
It would be interesting to know whether the 1,500 US soldiers who have been locked down at Incirlik Air Base along with several hundred soldiers from other NATO countries since the failed coup Friday night would agree with him.
Following the failed coup, the Erdogan regime cut off the base’s external electricity supply and temporarily suspended all flights from the base.
The base commander Gen. Bekir Ercan Van and 11 other service members from the base and a police officer were placed under arrest.
Incirlik is the center of NATO air operations against Islamic State in Syria. It also reportedly houses 50 nuclear warheads. The atomic bombs belong to the US. They deployed to Turkey – under US control – as a relic of the Cold War.
It took US President Barack Obama two years of pleading to convince Turkish President Recep Erdogan to allow NATO forces to use the base at Incirlik. It was only after the Kurdish political party secured unprecedented gains in Turkey’s parliamentary elections last year, and Tayyip Erdogan decided to expand his operations against the Kurds of Iraq and Syria to dampen domestic support for the Kurds, that he agreed to allow NATO forces to use the base.
His condition was that the US support his war against the Kurds – the most effective ground force in the war against Islamic State.
Stoltenberg’s statement of support for Turkey is particularly troubling because Erdogan’s post-coup behavior makes it impossible to continue to sweep his hostility under the rug.
For nearly 14 years, since his AK Party first won the national elections in late 2002, Erdogan and his followers have made clear that they are ideologically – and therefore permanently – hostile to the West. And for nearly 14 years, Western leaders have pretended this reality under the rug.
Just weeks after AKP’s first electoral triumph, the Turkish parliament shocked Washington when it voted to reject the US’s request to deploy Iraq invasion forces along the Turkish border with Iraq. Turkey’s refusal to permit US operations from its territory are a big reason the Sunni insurgency in Iraq was able to organize.
A separate black nation in Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia and South Carolina, which would sever Florida from the rest of the nation, might sound crazy or at least complicated. On the other hand, according to Christian Davenport, professor of political science at the University of Michigan, it’s simple and sensible.
“Actually, I think that it is fairly easily for African-Americans to form a Black nation within the United States,” professor Davenport told David Love of the Atlanta Black Star. “There are large sections of the United States that have nothing but Black people in them already. There are cults and militias as well as private corporations that do whatever they want behind their closed doors.”
Davenport, author of How Social Movements Die: Repression and Demobilization of the Republic of New Africa, explained that “from my time in New York in Chicago, it is clear that organizations like the Nation of Islam occupy decent size areas in American cities. The idea of Black folk coming together thus does not seem that difficult to me.”
For the professor, also a faculty associate at the UM’s Center for Political Studies, “The Republic of New Africa actually had several innovative ways to seek territorial control. One involved something akin to electoral empowerment whereby Blacks would get individuals elected who would, in turn, deputize and otherwise bring in members of the RNA to govern. Another involved something akin to stepping into situations of state failure. Here, the RNA would find locales where the U.S. government has basically stepped out and/or can no longer maintain control. The RNA had the idea of stepping into this vacuum. Now, the difficult part becomes arming that nation in an organized fashion and getting recognition from the United States as well as other nations. This is where the difficulty will come from.”
So maybe the separate black nation is not so simple after all. “The minute you go aggressive and militaristic, you cannot wind the clock back,” the professor told the Atlanta Black Star. “Nation-building is incredibly hard to do and it involves diverse tasks.”
In the same article, Gen. Babu Omowale, national minister of defense for the People’s New Black Panther Party and co-founder of the Huey P. Newton Gun Club, explained that since the Emancipation Proclamation in 1863, “we’ve been constantly attacked by white society and white supremacy. We’ve never been left alone, so I think it is important for Black people to arm ourselves.”
CLEVELAND — Republican presidential candidate Donald John Trump gave a masterful acceptance speech last night as he savaged Hillary Clinton for her seemingly congenital corruption, assailed Barack Obama’s failed policies and the civil unrest he has fomented, and optimistically laid out an ambitious roadmap to the future.
Trump did an admirable job staying on-message.
“Together, we will lead our party back to the White House, and we will lead our country back to safety, prosperity, and peace,” he said. “We will be a country of generosity and warmth. But we will also be a country of law and order.”
America is being overrun by “violence in our streets and the chaos in our communities,” he said. “Decades of progress made in bringing down crime are now being reversed by this administration’s rollback of criminal enforcement.”
The number of police officers killed in the line of duty is up nearly 50 percent compared to this point last year, he said. Although 180,000 illegal aliens with criminal records have been order deported, they “are tonight roaming free to threaten peaceful citizens.”
Border crossings by illegals are out of control and these aliens “are being released by the tens of thousands into our communities with no regard for the impact on public safety or resources.”
Some of these illegals have been murdering Americans and that’s fine with Hillary Clinton, he implied. Clinton supports lawless sanctuary cities and favors open borders, he said.
“I have a message for all of you: the crime and violence that today afflicts our nation will soon, and I mean very soon, come to an end. Beginning on January 20th, 2017, safety will be restored. The most basic duty of government is to defend the lives of its own citizens. Any government that fails to do so is a government unworthy to lead.”
He said he would be “the law and order candidate.”
Americans need a straightforward assessment of the state of the nation, he said. “I will present the facts plainly and honestly. We cannot afford to be so politically correct anymore.”
Black unemployment rates are sky-high and Latino poverty rates are higher than when President Obama took the oath of office in 2009, he said, adding that “another 14 million people have left the workforce entirely.”