From Volume 36, Issue 49 of EIR Online, Published Dec. 18, 2009

United States News Digest

Obama Lies Again! And, Again!

Dec. 11 (EIRNS)—The latest Senate version of "Obamacare" is supposed to be completely sealed from the public on Senate Leader Harry Reid's orders; but nevertheless, some incredibly filthy things are leaking out.

First, in the section entitled "No Annual or Lifetime Limits," HMOs are now authorized precisely to put annual limits on their coverage for serious, chronic diseases such as cancer, heart disease, and diabetes. This makes a liar, yet again, out of President Obama, who has promised just the opposite in every speech he has given on health care since last Spring. "Obama lied again, and yet again, and again!" Lyndon LaRouche exclaimed.

In another part of the latest Obamacare deal, an insurance source reported that the Medicare premiums for people who may be allowed to "buy in to Medicare" at 55-64 years of age, may be set as high as five to six times the premiums paid by 65-and-over seniors; and the benefits are likely to be less than seniors receive. Although the number of people who "buy in" might be only a few million, these higher premiums and lesser benefits could be used to exert a downward pull to restrict costs on Medicare as a whole.

Backlash Against Obama's Failed 'Anti-Foreclosure' Plan

Dec. 9 (EIRNS)—The frustration erupting now against President Barack Obama within the Congressional Black Caucus is not just about mass unemployment and Wall Street bailouts, but also against the tsunami of foreclosures devastating urban and suburban neighborhoods, and Obama's failure to stop them. Rep. Maxine Waters (D-Calif.) recently warned that "the basic elements of civilization—work, food, shelter—are being lost" in the inner cities; other members of the Caucus have boycotted financial legislation of the White House and of "Bailout Barney" Frank, to protest the depression toll.

The President, immediately after taking office, rejected foreclosure moratoria and bankruptcy reorganization of banks, as economist Lyndon LaRouche had proposed, and many city and state governments had supported. The "Make Home Affordable" plan Obama went with on Feb. 17 instead, a banks-and-lenders-approved set of baby steps, has failed in the face of 1.2 million home repossessions this year. Not quite as badly Frank's Hope for Homeowners legislation, which helped a total of 49 households during all of 2008—but failed nonetheless.

"This program is not working," reported Harvard law professor Elizabeth Warren, chair of a Congressional review panel which examined it. It has failed to dent the still-rising foreclosure wave, which will hit 3.6 million homes in 2009. Only about 10,000 homeowners received permanent loan modifications under the Obama plan.

About 250,000 homeowners have gotten trial modifications, lasting only five months, and supposed to reduce mortgage payments to 31% of the household's income. But two-thirds of those have been unable to produce the voluminous paperwork needed to satisfy the bank and the government that they "deserve" a permanent modification; and worse, 25% of them have already defaulted again on the mortgage during the short trial period. With mass unemployment, people can't afford 31% of their income on a mortgage, or their income has fallen further again since the modification.

'Every Woman Counts'—Except When It Comes To Saving Lives

Dec. 8 (EIRNS)—The State of California plans on cutting 52,000 low-income women, or 16.4%, from a program that provides free mammograms, beginning Jan. 1, 2010. The State's Cancer Detection Program, "Every Woman Counts," released plans for the cutbacks due to "unprecedented fiscal challenges." Details of the plan include a temporary freeze in new enrollees until July 1, 2010, when a new age requirement of 50 years will be implemented. Women who have had a problem detected will continue to receive services until a final diagnosis and any needed treatment has begun. The Jan. 1 cut-off date has created a scramble for health staff at clinics across the state to schedule screenings for as many women possible, for the remaining days of 2009.

The decision to deny mammogram screenings to women 50 and younger comes after a recent U.S. Preventive Services Task Force report concluded that most women in their 40s don't need to be screened. The stark similarity between the Obama Administration and a Schwarzenneger-led California, confirms that what Lyndon LaRouche identified as the Nazi, "lives not worthy of life" policy, in dealing with the financial crisis, is well underway across the United States.

Obama Phones Conyers: Stop 'Demeaning' Me

Dec. 8 (EIRNS)—Rep. John Conyers (D-Mich.) is preparing a letter of criticism for President Barack Obama that is "so serious," that the President has to reply in writing, Conyers told the Washington insider newspaper, The Hill, in an interview published today. Conyers says, "[Obama] called me and told me that he heard that I was demeaning him and I had to explain to him that it wasn't anything personal, it was an honest difference on the issues. And he said, 'Well, lets talk about it.' " But, after Obama's speech announcing the sending of 30,000 troops to Afghanistan, Conyers said that he is in no mood to "chat."

Conyers bashed Obama's policies on health care and the Afghanistan War, stating, "I'm getting tired of saving Obama's can in the White House," when he appeared on the Bill Press radio talk show. Conyers not only defended his previous statements, but went beyond them, further angering the White House.

"I've been saying I don't agree with him on Afghanistan, I think he screwed up on health-care reform, on Guantanamo and kicking Greg [Craig, the White House counsel] off....

About Afghanistan, Conyers said: "[Obama's] calling in generals and admirals to discuss troop strength is like me taking my youngest to McDonald's to ask if he likes french fries."

Conyers, head of the Judiciary Committee, is also opposing the White House over the extension of the Bush/Cheney Patriot Act, and recently "sent around a Dear Colleague letter" to a bipartisan list of lawmakers, asking them to join his "newly formed Peace and Progress in Afghanistan Caucus." Conyers also told the Detroit Free Press that Obama is getting "bad advice from ... clowns" on Afghanistan.

Hell Hath No Fury Like a Barney Scorned

Dec. 8 (EIRNS)—It's not just Wall Street having a meltdown: So is Rep. Barney Frank (D-Mass.). He can't take criticism any better than Barack Obama can, and he's in for some tough times as the mass strike ferment against Wall Street grows. In a Dec. 4 Newsweek story headlined "Why Is Barney Frank So Effing Mad?", reporter Michael Hirsch writes how Barney went nuts against him, and eventually threw him out with an "Interview's over!" half way through. Frank was paranoid from the start. Hirsh writes, " 'How dare you!" [he] says. 'How dare you accuse me of lying!' I am up on Capitol Hill ... and Frank is growing agitated as I ask about the influence of the banking lobby on the House Financial Services Committee...."

Later, another explosion: " 'Are you trying to catch me in some lie?' Frank retorts. 'You think I put [the committee vote on his reform bill] off for the big banks?' " Hirsch says, "Actually, I hadn't said anything about the big banks...." Finally, when Hirsch questions "how tough he's going to be on Wall Street's cash cow, derivatives trading, he's had enough. 'This interview is over,' Frank says, as if banging down a gavel."

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