The way the Democrats instantly reverted to violent anti-Republican rhetoric over the GOP health care bill while Rep. Steve Scalise is still in the hospital (ranting that it’s a “death bill” and millions of Americas will DIE if it’s passed), you’d think that if the Republicans don’t pass it, Obamacare will stay in place and everything will be wonderful. They never bring up the fact that the entire reason we need a replacement bill is that the health care bill they gave us is going into a death spiral all by itself.

Just as a reality check/wake-up call, Western Journalism put together an investigation into the history and current state of Obamacare. It reminds us of what we were promised, what was actually delivered (they just threw lots of money at the problem, with the same effect as throwing $25 million at Jon Ossoff’s Congressional bid, so that government now controls 80% or more of our health care dollars) and what’s happened since (the average nationwide premium increase since 2013 has been 99% percent for individuals and 140% for families; and 70% of counties now have only one or two insurers still in the exchanges). It also takes a look at some suggested alternatives that would be cheaper and more efficient.

In other words, don’t listen to those who’d have you believe that any attempt to replace Obamacare is killing a system that’s working great and any alternative will make people die. They’d like you to think this is a choice between a mean, evil Republican plan or Heaven. It’s actually a choice between grabbing a life preserver or drowning.

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Bill Dana RIP

June 22, 2017

We’ve lost another of those familiar TV faces that baby boomers grew up with: Bill Dana passed away last week at his Nashville home at 92. Dana was both a familiar comic character actor and a writer who helped create some of the most beloved comedy bits of the past half-century-plus. He’s best known for a character that became a phenomenon in the ‘60s but could never exist in today’s PC age: Jose Jimenez.

Jose was a nervous Mexican immigrant with a humorously tenuous grasp of English who started every bit by declaring, “My name Jose Jimenez!” While Jose might be considered a dialect humor stereotype now, at the time, Latino groups honored Dana for creating a positive portrayal of a patriotic Mexican immigrant, and he was careful not to do any jokes he thought would seem offensive.

Beginning with his first appearance on the classic Steve Allen show (where Dana was head writer), his catchphrase swept the country. The Mercury 7 astronauts played his records so much that the first words spoken to an American in space came in 1961 when Deke Slayton told Alan Shepherd on blast-off, “Okay, Jose, you’re on your way!” Dana became friends with the astronauts, made a comedy record called “Jose the Astronaut” that was later included in the Smithsonian Air and Space Museum and the Astronaut Hall of Fame, and he was named the first “honorary astronaut.”

But while Jose Jimenez was his most famous creation, it was only a tiny part of Bill Dana’s career. He played many roles, such as Sophia’s brother Angelo on “Golden Girls,” but stage fright made him prefer writing. He created many classic jokes for “Get Smart” star Don Adams (the “Would you believe?... bit was Dana’s) and wrote the most famous episode ever of “All in the Family,” where Archie Bunker meets Sammy Davis Jr. Surprisingly for someone who made millions laugh for over seven decades, Dana suffered from severe depression, and he wrote a book about the curative powers of laughter.

All this is only scratching the surface of his astonishing career. If you’d like to see an obituary that reads like a crash course in comedy history over the second half of the 20th century, click the link. I guarantee that if you don’t know Bill Dana, after you read about his life and see his face, you’ll say, “Oh, THAT guy! I loved him!”

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The Profiling Project, an independent investigation into the death last July of DNC staffer Seth Rich, has been released. The investigators, largely volunteer graduate students and professors from George Washington University, believe it’s unlikely that Rich was the victim of a random attempted robbery.

Raging political seas inevitably threaten to splinter and swallow up this story, so I thought it might be a good idea to pass along a link to the complete report, unfiltered through Newsweek or any other alleged news organization. We’ll talk later about it and get into the details, to be sure. And a year after Seth Rich’s death, we should thank the Profiling Project for keeping this cold case warm, when there are others who’d prefer it be kept on ice.

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