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Curmudgeon's Corner

cur-mud-geon: anyone who hates hypocrisy and pretense and has the temerity to say so; anyone with the habit of pointing out unpleasant facts in an engaging and humorous manner

Planned Parenthood Thoughts...

Quality of Life, Politics, Healthcare, People Making A Difference

Planned Parenthood has likely had more publicity than it desires over the past several weeks after the seeming regular periodic release of damning video after damning video.  This organization was created on October 16, 1916 as a 501(c)(3) entity.  It is interesting, as an aside, that conservative organizations filing for approval under that designation can be politically harangued for their beliefs by the IRS.

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Happy Birthday Medicare & Medicaid...

Healthcare, Economy, Politics, Quality of Life, Taxes, U.S.

 Medicare and Medicaid were signed into law 50 years ago today by President Lyndon Baines Johnson who praised former President Truman for getting that ball rolling.  Here we are five decades later observing the two programs that are an integral part of life in our country, and that are huge federal budget items.

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Healthcare Merger Mania...

Healthcare, Economy, Politics, Quality of Life, U.S.

Health care insurers have been in a merger frenzy; fearful apparently that they might either get taken over or get lost in the dance of elephants.  The top five in size have now succeeded in making that group the top three presuming that all requisite governmental approvals are received.  These three will control a significant majority of the total market.

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6 To 3 In Favor Of ObamaCare...

Healthcare, Politics, Quality of Life, U.S., Economy, People Making A Difference

The long awaited, or so it seems, decision on ObamaCare by the U.S. Supreme Court has been published and in a 6-3 decision the Supremes have upheld the language and say that the magic four words (established by the state) were ‘ambiguous’ but that all who enroll have access to the premium assistance given their view of the totality of the law.

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Obesity At Epidemic Proportions?

People Making A Difference, Quality of Life, Healthcare, U.S.

The Los Angeles Times published a story today citing the statistics concerning Americans’ weight…actually Americans’ significant overweight issues as measured by the Body Mass Index which you can locate by clicking here.  I could conclude that we are facing an epidemic of obesity.

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Absolutely Unforgivable!

U.S., Politics, Military, Healthcare, People Making A Difference

Our treatment of our veterans is absolutely disgraceful.  Those men and women were prepared to give their lives to defend us and our freedom and they did their job.  Those who came home having been wounded or who lost limbs or who needed mental help were sent into the Veteran’s Administration system for those services.

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Health Care Changing Rapidly...

Healthcare, Politics, Quality of Life, U.S., Wisconsin

The world of health care is changing more rapidly today than I can ever before recall.  The advent of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) has played a significant role since it brought more patients into the mix and also directly and indirectly affects provider reimbursement.

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The Alphabet Soup of Healthcare...

Healthcare, People Making A Difference, Politics, Quality of Life, U.S.

The world of health care delivery has evolved rapidly.  For the most part that is a good thing.  The announcement today of Target and CVS making a deal for CVS to take over operation of the current Target-branded pharmacies is yet another step in that evolution.  The retail pharmacy has become, in more and more cases, a walk-in clinic and underlying both is the vaunted pharmacy benefits manager (PBM) that dispenses or influences the delivery of drugs through mail operations and retail facility networks to many millions of people.

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Care For Another Helping of Crow?

Healthcare, Political, Quality of Life, U.S.

Given the possibility that the U.S. Supreme Court might disrupt the flow of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) depending upon how it rules in the next couple of weeks, Wisconsin’s Sen. Ron Johnson(R) has been working to put together a bipartisan bill that would solve the problem of premium subsidies while extracting some give-backs from President Obama.

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The President's Full Court Press...

Politics, U.S., Politics, Healthcare, Quality of Life

There is an obvious ‘full court press’ underway with the Administration working diligently to basically, and blatantly, advise the Supreme Court what it should and shouldn’t do in the case it will soon publish a decision concerning.  Of course, this all relates to the four words currently found in the Affordable Care Act (ACA) relating to purchasing exchanges which caused a case to be brought before the Court.

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A Tough Decision For The U.S. Supreme Court...

Politics, Quality of Life, Healthcare, People Making A Difference

Many people are awaiting the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling on tax credits to help offset premium cost in the Affordable Care Act (ACA) world.  The Kaiser Foundation has created a state-by-state analysis to help people understand the potential impact if the Court rules that the tax credit is not available in states that rely on HealthCare.gov, the Federal exchange, as the vehicle for residents to select and enroll in plans.  There are 34 states in that category, including Wisconsin.

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Single Payer Health Care System?

Healthcare, Politics, U.S., Quality of Life

Rate increase requests are flowing in now for ObamaCare health coverage in 2016 in various states.  These increases are reflecting some of the issues of which many were wary, among them the cost of pent-up demand when there was no underwriting of risk possible.

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Physician Compensation By State

Healthcare, Quality of Life, Wisconsin, U.S.

A new report was just issued by a firm named Medscape that addresses the average compensation for physicians state-by-state.  It sounds like the results should make us Wisconsinites happy at least for the fact that we should be an attractive place for doctors.

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The Other Side of the ACA...

Politics, Healthcare, Employment, Wisconsin

Assurant Health, basically the former Time Insurance Company that used to be headquartered in Milwaukee is being put on the block by its parent organization and the blame for that can be laid at the feet of the Affordable Care Act (ACA).  Time Insurance made money on health insurance using smart underwriting of the risk.  The use of health underwriting is forbidden by the ACA, something that people with prior health conditions and without insurance found to be great.  Consequently, a formerly profitable health insurer is now losing big money due to adverse claims needing to be paid.  It has other business that is largely comprised of life, dental and short-term and long-term disability policies which can still be underwritten but which is insufficient to keep the company alive in its present form.

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ACA 'Cadillac Tax' Rears Its Ugly Head...

U.S., Politics, Quality of Life, Healthcare

Rep. Joe Courtney (D-Conn.) is slated to introduce, today, his “Middle Class Health Benefits Tax Repeal Act” and has 48 co-sponsors.  Curiously, another ‘Cadillac tax’ repeal effort has been introduced by a Republican (Rep. Frank Guinta from New Hampshire).

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Adding Insult to Injury...

Politics, Taxes, Quality of Life, U.S., Healthcare

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ACA 'Cadillac' Tax Draws Ever Closer...

Politics, Quality of Life, Healthcare, Taxes, U.S.

The soon-to-become infamous Cadillac tax which is part of the Affordable Care Act is beginning to draw notice, especially from the labor leaders whose negotiated plans will likely come close to this penalty or enjoy the penalty from the outset.

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Time To Privatize The VA?

Politics, Quality of Life, Military, Healthcare, U.S.

The ongoing debacle called the VA Hospital in Tomah, WI was front and center again this week.  The feds were conducting an open testimony committee hearing supposedly to get to the bottom of the “Candyland” and “Candy Man” issues that were identified by people on the inside and then effectively ignored by elected representatives.

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Five Years Ago Today...

Healthcare, Political, Quality of Life, U.S., People Making A Difference

Five years ago today we found ourselves with a new law that has been generally known as ObamaCare.  It was passed in the dark of night and still is not fully understood even by those who theoretically knew what it was they were doing.

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The Story of Colton Hidde...

Healthcare, People Making A Difference, Quality of Life, Wisconsin

There are occasional stories that simply grip my senses to the point that I have difficulty in comprehending how I would feel if directly involved on one side or the other.  One of those is the story on page one in the morning Journal Sentinel titled “Parents sue over screening delay”.

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We Need To Get This One Right...

Economy, Healthcare, Politics, Quality of Life, Taxes, U.S.

We spend a lot of time, many of us anyway, on trying to promote the candidate(s) of our choosing.  Many spend a lot of money on that effort, as well.  For some, this is an exercise of personal power as we see with the billionaires who throw tens of millions upon tens of millions of dollars into the fray.  For the majority, this is an exercise in the use of freedoms guaranteed us by our Constitution.  For whatever our reasons, many of us are thoroughly engaged in the outcome we favor.  Sometimes we win and sometimes we lose.  Some of those outcomes hang with us; I still remember the field of flowers suddenly being destroyed in the flash of an atomic bomb explosion that took Barry Goldwater to the loser’s position in the first election in which I became an active volunteer.

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Bad, Bad Staples...

Economy, Healthcare, Political, Quality of Life, U.S.

President Obama has taken a shot at Staples, Inc. because this company has had the audacity to try to find the best ways to work with the Affordable Care Act (ACA) while obeying the law and delivering good results for its stockholders.  He has said they are “undercutting” his law and says further that large corporations should not use the health insurance issue as an excuse for cutting wages.

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ObamaCare Premium Subsidies...

Healthcare, Economy, Political, Taxes, Quality of Life, U.S.

Those signed up for ObamaCare this year are averaging $268 per month in premium forgiveness.  There are some 6.5 million people in that category.  That totals nearly $21,000,000 annually in subsidies paid by the government to the health plans providing the coverage.  It is easy to see why the major health insurance companies were so eager to jump onto the ObamaCare bandwagon.  Their revenue streams have taken a significant jump and their profits have increased also.

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The Wisdom of Solomon...

U.S., Wisconsin, Quality of Life, Politics, People Making A Difference, Healthcare, Economy

 The Wisdom of Solomon would be handy for our U.S. Supreme Court as it decides the issue raised concerning government subsidies to help pay for health coverage under the Affordable Care Act (ACA), or Obamacare.  A look at the current information for Wisconsin gives some background:

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Be On The Look-Out...

Quality of Life, Healthcare, Germantown, Potpourri

If you see a guy walking or driving down the street with a white blob for a nose, that might just be me for a day or two yet.  I had outpatient surgery yesterday for a malignant growth on my nose that was caught as a possible problem during my annual visit with my Dermatologist.  He took a skin sample (from the nose where no one will see it J) and it tested positive, so I was referred to another member of the Dermatological team who handles such surgical procedures.

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Page 1 vs. Page 9 Disconnect: Bice vs Baldwin

Politics, Quality of Life, U.S., Wisconsin, Healthcare

The Journal Sentinel front page this morning carries the header for the Dan Bice column No Quarter: “Baldwin ousts aide over VA controversy”.  Bice details the following:

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Really? Intentional ACA Data Releases

Political, Healthcare, Quality of Life, Healthcare

Just when you thought it was safe to go into the water…

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Really? Intentional ACA Data Releases

Political, Healthcare, Quality of Life, Healthcare

Just when you thought it was safe to go into the water…

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The State of the Union...

U.S., Politics, Quality of Life, Employment, Economy, Healthcare

The State of the Union, in the opinion of the President, is different than it is in my opinion. I know that cuts absolutely no ice except in my mind. I also know that it appears I am in for a very long two years. This was obviously to be expected since he is liberal and I am conservative. He is striving to leave his mark on the office and I would have him do as little harm to our country as possible. His interpretation of events seems to contrast with my interpretation; and, I fully understand that my interpretation influences no one but me…and maybe a handful of other like-minded people. This all serves to point up just how important elections are, and that goes for every election from that for a Village Board member to that for the President of the United States. We sometimes seem to think that we can sit out an election without doing any harm having done so. That may sometimes be true but we take a decided risk if too many of our persuasion have the same idea. We are beginning the process of selecting the Republican candidate for the next Presidential election. The folks in Iowa will have some say in this process as will those in other states that have active political groups. We appear to be among the states that will have a candidate in this race. Governor Walker is making all the moves and saying all the things we’d expect from a prospective candidate for President. Some would have him in the top three on the Republican side. I don’t know if that is a good spot to be in if people become jaded in their expectations of what he’ll say and do along the way. He’ll still have to make some decisions for the state while he is on that trail and those may not necessarily be the kinds of decisions that will enhance his standing. We are also in the process of selecting the most favored Democratic candidate. There are several who seem to believe they have a decided advantage in that process by dint of name and/or past service. It remains to be seen just who that candidate will be but the race to that end will be interesting to watch. If the current President proves nothing else than that governing experience is important, that is fine. We cannot, in my opinion, afford to have another learn-on-the-job President given the state of our nation (notwithstanding President Obama’s opinion on the subject), and the state of the world in which we live. A sitting or former Governor would seem better qualified from the executive perspective. He or she would’ve been there and done that, so to speak, even though the decisions at the national level are so very much more critical than at a state level.

Tomah VA's "Candy Man"?

Military, Healthcare, Politics, Quality of Life, Wisconsin

The Tomah, Wi Veteran’s Hospital has earned a nickname that is astounding.  It is called “Candy Land” and that is not a sought-after euphemism.  That name evolved from the heavy-handed distribution of narcotic drugs to veterans.

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Affordable Care Act Test Vote?

Politics, Quality of Life, Healthcare, Economy, Taxes, U.S.

Republicans reportedly will test the waters on changes to the Affordable Care Act (ACA) by proposing to move the definition of full time from the current 30 hours per week back to the traditional 40 hours per week.  They feel this is the slam dunk issue if one exists.

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Unforeseen Consequences in ObamaCare

Politics, Quality of Life, Healthcare, Economy, U.S.

 A largely unanticipated issue has apparently been recognized:  medical debt appears to be a significant issue on credit reports.  That is not too surprising except that it affects about 20% of the people in the country to one degree or another.

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Obamacare Spikes Coming...

U.S., Political, Quality of Life, People Making A Difference, Economy, Healthcare

The December 9th Opinions page in our Milwaukee Journal Sentinel featured an article written by Stephen T. Parente titled “Obamacare spikes are coming”.  It discusses the relatively hidden things in that law that will almost assure a major spike in the cost of health care coverage that will hit in 2017 and after.  Mr. Parente is the director of the Medical Industry Leadership Institute at the University of Minnesota.  He is also a professor of health finance at the U of M.  With his credentials having been displayed, we can proceed to the expectations he sheds light on:

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Do Republicans Remember How To Govern?

Political, People Making A Difference, Quality of Life, Healthcare, Economy, Education, Employment, Taxes, U.S.

With the defeat (a/k/a dumping) of Sen. Mary Landrieu (D-LA), there are some amazing numbers floating around:

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Don't Squander The Opportunity...

U.S., Politics, Taxes, People Making A Difference, Healthcare, Economy, Employment

The Washington world is one of intrigue, broken promises and broken laws.  That promises to be demonstrated more and more as we find ourselves watching the final two years of the Obama Presidency with a Republican-dominated Congress.

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"Extraordinarily Transparent" Indeed

Healthcare, Political, Quality of Life, U.S.

 The several clips (at four so far) from MIT Economist Jonathon Gruber’s presentations where he discusses the creation of the Affordable Care Act, Obama Care as it is commonly known, have  elicited the following quote from White House press secretary Josh Earnest:

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An Ebola Czar...I Feel Better Already!

Healthcare, Quality of Life, Politics, U.S.

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A Frightening Virus

Quality of Life, Politics, People Making A Difference, Healthcare, U.S.

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The CDC and Ebola...

Quality of Life, Political, People Making A Difference, Healthcare, U.S.

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ObamaCare And Birth Control Drugs

U.S., Politics, Quality of Life, Healthcare

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An Exciting Time In Health Care...

Wisconsin, Healthcare, Quality of Life, People Making A Difference

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Will The Costs Of ObamaCare Be Sustainable?

U.S., Taxes, Politics, Quality of Life, Healthcare, Economy

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More ACA Details Becoming Available & They're Troubling

U.S., Quality of Life, Politics, Healthcare

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The Costly Difference Between 'Observation' and 'Treatment'

U.S., Healthcare, Quality of Life

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A Long Season of Ugly...

U.S., Quality of Life, Political, Healthcare, Economy, Employment

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"Mad as h_ll"?

Quality of Life, Politics, Healthcare, U.S.

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Health Plan Reference Pricing

U.S., Quality of Life, Politics, Healthcare

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Narrow Network ACA Health Plans

Quality of Life, Politics, Healthcare, People Making A Difference

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The Impact of the ACA is Behind Us; Right?

Politics, Quality of Life, U.S., Taxes, Healthcare, Economy

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Could There Have Been Another Reason for the ACA?

U.S., Healthcare, Quality of Life, Politics, Taxes

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Pandering For Votes

U.S., Healthcare, Quality of Life, Politics, Economy

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Farewell Ms. Lightning Rod

U.S., Politics, Quality of Life, Healthcare, Economy

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Looking For a Health Insurance Policy?

U.S., Quality of Life, Politics, Healthcare, People Making A Difference, Economy

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Washington County Ranked 8th...

Wisconsin, Quality of Life, People Making A Difference, Healthcare, Education

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7.1 Million People Enrolled...

U.S., Healthcare, Politics, Taxes, Quality of Life, Economy

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ACA Versus Medicare Advantage?

U.S., Quality of Life, Politics, Healthcare

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Quick Hits: March 27, 2014

Politics, People Making A Difference, U.S., Healthcare, Education, Employment

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They're kidding. Right? Another Extension?

U.S., Political, Quality of Life, Healthcare

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A Man With a Pen and a Phone...

U.S., Politics, Quality of Life, Healthcare, Economy

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Closer & Closer To Real Numbers...

U.S., Quality of Life, Political, Healthcare, Economy

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President Obama Makes Another ACA Change

Healthcare, Economy, Political, Quality of Life, U.S.

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Wisconsin Obesity Climbs Annually

Quality of Life, Healthcare, People Making A Difference, Taxes

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Kicking The Can...

U.S., Political, Quality of Life, People Making A Difference, Healthcare, Economy

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The Politicization of Health Care

U.S., Political, Quality of Life, Healthcare, Economy, People Making A Difference

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Just When You Think It Can't Get Any Worse...

U.S., Political, Healthcare, Quality of Life, Economy

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Intentional or Coincidental Market Disruption?

Healthcare, U.S., Quality of Life, Political, Economy

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Continuing Saga of ObamaCare...

U.S., Political, Healthcare, Quality of Life, Economy

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More Unintended Consequences (or at least I hope they're unintended)

Political, Employment, Quality of Life, U.S., Healthcare

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The 'Real World' of the Affordable Care Act (a/k/a ObamaCare)

Wisconsin, Quality of Life, Healthcare

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It Is That Time of Year...

Quality of Life, Potpourri, People Making A Difference, Healthcare

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ObamaCare Is A Greater Concern Every Week.

Healthcare, Quality of Life, Political, Economy

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Gross Ineptitude or Intentional All Along?

U.S., Quality of Life, Political, Healthcare, People Making A Difference, Economy

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Will It Never End?

U.S., Quality of Life, People Making A Difference, Healthcare, Economy

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The Realities of ObamaCare

U.S., Healthcare, Political, Quality of Life, Economy, People Making A Difference

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ObamaCare Site Issues

U.S., Quality of Life, Political, Healthcare, Economy

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Peggy Noonan's "Low-Information Leadership"

U.S., Political, Quality of Life, Healthcare

Peggy Noonan has penned a blog that makes for an excellent read, in my opinion at least.  She deals with ObamaCare and President Obama.

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ObamaCare Website Functional?

U.S., Quality of Life, Healthcare, Political, Taxes, Economy

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The Massachusetts Connector & ObamaCare

Healthcare, Quality of Life, U.S.

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Everything You Need to Know About ObamaCare

U.S., Quality of Life, Political, Healthcare, Economy

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The Slippery Slope of Wealth Redistribution

U.S., Quality of Life, Healthcare, Political, Taxes, Economy

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Health Plan Cancellation Received?

Healthcare, Political, Quality of Life, Wisconsin

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What Do We Do Now?

U.S., Quality of Life, Political, Healthcare, Economy, Employment

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Blatant Usurpation of Power

U.S., Political, Healthcare, Economy, Employment, Quality of Life

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Will The President Lead? If Not, Getting Out Of The Way Will Help!

U.S., Political, Healthcare, Quality of Life, Economy, Employment

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Ruminations for a Saturday Morning...

Potpourri, Quality of Life, Political, Germantown, Economy, Healthcare

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It Seems Like Forever...

U.S., Healthcare, Political, Taxes, Economy, Employment

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In a Hole? Stop Digging!

Political, U.S., People Making A Difference, Economy, Healthcare

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Bad Apple Insurers?

U.S., Political, Quality of Life, Healthcare, Economy

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Is This Mess The Insurance Companies' Fault?

U.S., Political, Healthcare, Quality of Life, Economy

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Naive, Disingenuous or Liar?

Political, Quality of Life, U.S., Healthcare, Economy

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Washington, We Have a Problem 2

U.S., Quality of Life, Political, Healthcare, Economy

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ObamaCare In The Full Light Of Day

U.S., Quality of Life, Political, Healthcare, Economy, Employment

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Is ObamaCare A Train Wreck?

U.S., Quality of Life, Political, Healthcare, Economy

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Krauthammer Hit The Nail On The Head...

U.S., Political, Quality of Life, Taxes, Economy, Healthcare

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HHS System Worse Than Thought...

U.S., Healthcare, Political, Quality of Life, Economy

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ObamaCare and Nationalized Health...

U.S., Political, Quality of Life, Healthcare, Economy

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Washington, We Have A Problem!

U.S., Political, Quality of Life, Economy, Healthcare

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ObamaCare Marketplace

U.S., Healthcare, Quality of Life, Political

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Game Day Is Almost Here...

U.S., Healthcare, Quality of Life, Political

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Not a Good Week For Unions...

U.S., Wisconsin, Political, Education, Healthcare, People Making A Difference

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ACA & The Young Invincibles

U.S., Political, Healthcare, Quality of Life

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Right Track or Wrong Track?

U.S., Political, Quality of Life, People Making A Difference, Economy, Employment, Healthcare

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What? Me Worry About PPACA?

U.S., Quality of Life, Political, Healthcare, Economy, Employment

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What, Me Worry?

Healthcare, U.S., Political, Quality of Life, Wisconsin

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A YouTube Piece That Says A Lot...

Healthcare, Political, Quality of Life, U.S.

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More Unintended Consequences Courtesy of ObamaCare

Healthcare, Quality of Life, U.S.

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Health Care Providers Weigh In on the PPACA

Healthcare, Quality of Life, People Making A Difference

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Should the Goose and the Gander Fare Equally?

Healthcare, Political, Quality of Life, U.S.

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Muddy Waters of ObamaCare

U.S., Healthcare, Political, Quality of Life

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Attack By a Turkey?

U.S., Quality of Life, Healthcare

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A 'Cadillac' Health Plan?

U.S., Quality of Life, Healthcare, Political

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Parts of ObamaCare (ACA) Delayed

U.S., Political, Healthcare, Quality of Life, Economy, Employment

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Got an Extra $2.9 Billion You Can Spare?

Wisconsin, Healthcare, Employment, Quality of Life, Taxes

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Dangerous Confluence of Events

U.S., Healthcare, Employment, Taxes, Quality of Life, Economy

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If It Quacks Like a Duck...

U.S., Political, People Making A Difference, Economy, Employment, Healthcare, Quality of Life

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What Congress Has Wrought Bites Back

U.S., Political, Healthcare, Quality of Life, Economy, Employment

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Budget All Nighters?

Wisconsin, Taxes, Political, Quality of Life, Education, Healthcare, Economy

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Is It My Imagination?

U.S., Political, Quality of Life, Healthcare, People Making A Difference

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Is the IRS a Political Arm of Government?

U.S., Taxes, Political, Healthcare, Quality of Life

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I Am Confused; Not An Uncommon State

U.S., Quality of Life, Political, Healthcare

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Connecting Job Report Dots...

Employment, Economy, Healthcare, Political, Quality of Life, Taxes, U.S.

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Yet Another ObamaCare Hiccup...

Healthcare, U.S., Wisconsin, Political, Quality of Life

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ObamaCare Concerns Congressional Staffers

U.S., Quality of Life, Political, Healthcare, Employment

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Exemption From ObamaCare? Why Not...

U.S., Political, Healthcare, Quality of Life, People Making A Difference

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Cyber Security

U.S., Economy, Employment, Healthcare, Quality of Life

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ACA So Far Bans Health Insurance Agents

U.S., Healthcare, Political, Quality of Life

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Will "Affordable Care" be Affordable?

U.S., Political, Healthcare, Economy, Quality of Life

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Obesity in Wisconsin

Wisconsin, Quality of Life, Healthcare, Economy

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Medicare Advantage Targeted

U.S., Wisconsin, Political, Healthcare, Quality of Life

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Trojan Horse?

U.S., Healthcare, Quality of Life

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So There!

U.S., Political, Economy, Healthcare, Employment, Taxes

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ObamaCare Revisited

U.S., Healthcare, Political, Quality of Life

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My Dusty Crystal Ball...

U.S., Wisconsin, Quality of Life, Political, People Making A Difference, Economy, Healthcare

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Hobby Lobby & The Morning After Pill

U.S., Healthcare, Quality of Life, Political

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Loopholes?

Healthcare, Economy, Political, Taxes, Quality of Life, U.S.

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3D Printers

Quality of Life, Potpourri, People Making A Difference, Healthcare, Education

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Must You As An Employer Provide Health Coverage?

U.S., Healthcare

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Must You Have Health Insurance Coverage Under the Law?

U.S., Healthcare

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State Insurance Exchanges

Wisconsin, U.S., Taxes, Healthcare, Quality of Life, Economy, Employment

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Getting Serious About PPACA/ObamaCare

U.S., Wisconsin, Taxes, Healthcare, Employment, Political, Quality of Life

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Walker Chooses Federal Exchange Approach

Wisconsin, U.S., Quality of Life, Healthcare, Employment, Taxes

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The Second Term Has Begun

U.S., Political, Economy, Employment, Healthcare, Quality of Life, Taxes

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Politics and Religion

U.S., Wisconsin, Political, Quality of Life, People Making A Difference, Healthcare

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Is There An Accountable Care Organization In Your Future?

U.S., Wisconsin, Healthcare, Quality of Life

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Altitude or Attitude?

U.S., Political, Quality of Life, Economy, Employment, Healthcare

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The Nanny State & Brick Walls

U.S., Wisconsin, School Board, Political, Quality of Life, Healthcare, Education

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Oh! Its not that time again, is it?

People Making A Difference, Quality of Life, Healthcare

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Ryan is the Choice

U.S., Political, Wisconsin, Economy, Employment, Healthcare, Quality of Life

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Ryan or Rubio or ?

U.S., Political, People Making A Difference, Economy, Healthcare

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Physicians Reassessing Their Futures

U.S., Wisconsin, Healthcare, Quality of Life

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PPACA - The More Things Change...

Wisconsin, U.S., Quality of Life, Political, Healthcare, Economy

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Two Battles Settled

U.S., Wisconsin, Healthcare, Quality of Life

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An EPIC Story

Healthcare, Quality of Life, U.S., Wisconsin

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Too Short or Too Heavy?

Quality of Life, Healthcare, People Making A Difference

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Sobering Thoughts

U.S., Quality of Life, Political, Economy, Education, Healthcare

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PPACA...The Morning After

U.S., Healthcare, Political, Quality of Life, Taxes

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PPACA Outcome Totally Unexpected

U.S., Political, Quality of Life, Healthcare

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ObamaCare/PPACA Winners & Losers

U.S., Healthcare, Political, Economy, Quality of Life, Taxes

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ObamaCare (PPACA) Decision Critical

U.S., Political, Healthcare, Economy, Taxes, Quality of Life

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Does the Emperor Have Clothes?

U.S., Political, Quality of Life, Healthcare, Economy

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When Will They Decide?

U.S., Healthcare, Quality of Life

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Instead of Writing a Blog...

Healthcare, Quality of Life, People Making A Difference, Potpourri

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ObamaCare...The Gift That Keeps On Giving

Healthcare, Political, Quality of Life, Taxes, Economy, U.S.

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A Bit 'Inside Baseball', But...

U.S., Healthcare, Economy, Political, Quality of Life

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Great News or What?

U.S., Healthcare, Quality of Life, Political

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The Donald's View of ObamaCare...

U.S., Political, Healthcare, Economy, Quality of Life

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Courts Supreme

U.S., Wisconsin, Political, Healthcare, Quality of Life

Our two Supreme Courts, one in Madison and one in Washington,D.C., are showing how important this third branch of government truly can be.

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The Health Care Debate

U.S., Political, Healthcare, Quality of Life

The U.S. Supreme Court enters its second day of hearings concerning PPACA (a/k/a ObamaCare) and will decide the various questions that have been raised.  There are, as is usual in matters of this nature, many nuances that are often difficult to fathom.  Among the issues is whether or not we can be compelled to take an action, buy health insurance coverage, and whether or not the fine for not doing so would be a tax or a penalty, and so on.  Underlying much of this is the fact that the government intentionally eliminated the "severability clause" which is present in most contracts.  That clause basically says that even if part of the contract is struck down, the rest survives.

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Justice's Recusal?

U.S., Political, Quality of Life, Healthcare

We hear much about the Wisconsin Supreme Court and the prospect of one Justice or another recusing himself or herself...BUT...

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The Cost of Uncertainty

U.S., Economy, Employment, Healthcare, Quality of Life, Political

Uncertainty is at the root of much of the disruption we face today in the various markets that exist in our economy.  When that is coupled with energy costs, we have the makings of a tough summer and fall right when we will elect or re-elect a president.

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The White House, Health Care & Old Folks

U.S., Political, Quality of Life, Healthcare, Economy

There is little secret that this White House wants to control virtually everything about our lives.  Health care, of course, has been the big target since PPACA (a/k/a ObamaCare) was passed in the dead of night.

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Hospice Care Pioneer

People Making A Difference, Quality of Life, Potpourri, Healthcare

I know it is probably a strange thing to do, but I read the obituaries every morning.  In today's morning Journal Sentinel, I saw the obituary for William Lamers, Jr. who died at the age of 80 in his home in Malibu.  The obituary stated that he was surrounded by family and friends.

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Typical Government Program

U.S., Political, Quality of Life, Healthcare, Economy

The Federal agencies involved have just released the final regulations that govern how the simplified Summary of Benefits and Coverage (SBC) for PPACA must be written and displayed.  This is a small part of the PPACA  bill (aka ObamaCare) that covered some 2,100 pages without really saying anything in detail about that program.  All the detail is now being formulated by the agencies, all of which are unelected and therefore beyond the public's reach so far as expressing displeasure.

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Obama & Birth Control Point To Bigger Issue

U.S., Quality of Life, Healthcare, Political

President Obama announced this morning that he is backing away from the controversial birth control mandate for Catholic organizations.  He is trying to make this go away and claims this isn't an accommodation.  The practice of insurance companies eliminating contraception coverage for Catholic entities has been here for a long time.  This isn't a new directive from the President much as he'd like us to think that is the case.

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Bits & Pieces - January 30th

Potpourri, Healthcare, Quality of Life, Germantown

Concealed Carry Classes

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Random Political Thoughts

Political, U.S., Wisconsin, Economy, Employment, Healthcare, Quality of Life

As I read the morning Journal Sentinel today, I was struck by the political inferences across the main section even though this publication claims to be unbiased.  (1) Dan Bice continues on the 'expose Walker' bent that he has made standard fare of late.  His "sources say" that charges will be issued in the coming days and that they likely will involve Walker operatives.  He mentions that "at least eight" of Walker's "former aides and associates have hired criminal defense lawyers".  "Insiders" have told Bice that the "next phase is focusing on the role of some of Walker's closest associates". (2) There is now an 'issue' over whether or not Wisconsin is in a deficit or not in a deficit.  The gap of some $3.6 Billion that Walker encountered when he took office was closed by the Walker government but that was on a cash basis.  So now we are exposed to the fact that under GAAP accounting there is still a deficit and that this fact was used recently in a petition to the federal government to gain its permission to cut some 50,000+ people from a state health plan if necessary.  I don't recall the continuing series of articles during the former government's time in office that traced the ever-increasing budget deficit or that condemned the use of various 'funds' (transportation and patient compensation, for example) to make possible increased state spending.  (3) A story on the national 'health care overhaul' from the Associated Press states that Wisconsin is among the states "lagging" in implementation of the wonderful new PPACA legislation that has yet to withstand U.S. Supreme Court scrutiny.  This story mentions some 500,000 Wisconsinites who have no health insurance but does not indicate that this state is among those with the lowest uninsured population in the nation.  Nor does it bother to mention that each of these 500,000 people have access to health care under federal laws that have been in force for years.  Maybe this was simply accidental story selection.  Maybe not. 

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Republican Field Smaller

Political, Quality of Life, U.S., Economy, Healthcare, Taxes

Rick Perry left the field of Republican candidates this morning.  He asked his supporters to back Newt Gingrich.  Given Perry's showing, his tossing his support to Gingrich will do very little to help Gingrich.  One of Newt's former wives, Marianne, will speak tonight on national television, and that won't help Newt either. 

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More Drug Shortages Ahead

Quality of Life, U.S., Healthcare

You may've read or heard reports of a shortage of drugs that has gotten worse this past year.  This has largely been created through unintended consequences, I hope, of government's actions.

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A Battle of Giants

U.S., Wisconsin, Healthcare, Quality of Life

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Do You Use Lipitor?

U.S., Quality of Life, Healthcare

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More Generic Drugs Coming Soon

U.S., Quality of Life, Healthcare

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PSA Tests After 50?

U.S., Healthcare, Political, Quality of Life

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A Bump in the Road for ObamaCare

U.S., Wisconsin, Healthcare, Economy, Quality of Life

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It Ain't Workin'

U.S., Wisconsin, Quality of Life, Healthcare

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Health Care Crystal Ball

Healthcare, Political, Quality of Life, U.S.

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A Forward Look at ObamaCare

U.S., Healthcare, Quality of Life, Political

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If ObamaCare Is So Great...

U.S., Political, Healthcare, Quality of Life

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Have You Ever Dreaded Seeing a Dentist?

People Making A Difference, Quality of Life, Healthcare

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ObamaCare Takes a Hit

U.S., Quality of Life, Healthcare, Economy, Taxes, Political

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The Tobacco Conundrum

Political, Taxes, Wisconsin, U.S., Healthcare

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Don't Forget...

Healthcare, Quality of Life, Political, U.S.

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November is Fast-Approaching

Political, Quality of Life, U.S., Wisconsin, Taxes, Economy, Healthcare

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The Cost Of Lifestyle Decisions

Economy, Healthcare, Quality of Life, U.S.

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A White Stair Step...

Healthcare, Quality of Life

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The "Political Class"...

Economy, Healthcare, Political, Quality of Life, Taxes, U.S., Wisconsin

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Welcome to Obama Care

Healthcare, Political, Quality of Life

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Berwick's Recess Appointment Differs From Most

Healthcare, Political, Quality of Life, U.S.

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Another Gang That Couldn't Shoot Straight?

Economy, Healthcare, Political, Quality of Life, Taxes, U.S.

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Bits and Pieces - June 17th

Economy, Healthcare, Political, Quality of Life, Taxes, U.S.

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My Letter From Kathleen...

Healthcare, Economy, Political, Quality of Life, Taxes, U.S.

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What Did We Learn Yesterday?

Economy, Healthcare, Political, Quality of Life, Taxes, U.S.

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How Far Does It Go?

Healthcare, Political, Quality of Life, U.S.

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Another Major Health Care Merger?

Germantown, Healthcare, Quality of Life