Oh god, I can't believe I'm doing this (maybe I'll force Mark to do it in the afternoon).
Ok, here's awesome Kathy "with a K" Sebelius, so now I'm going to go to lunch because nothing she will say will be funny, because she's not a crazy, unreasonable old white man.
Obama: Guys, we can't start again, from scratch. And for crissakes you old bastard, the American people don't care so much about the damn process, they want us to talk about the thing itself... Yes.
Obama: John, we're not campaigning anymore, and you're just giving me fucking talking points. You suck.
Hard to believe this guy might have been president. "Special interests. Special interests."
Obama: "John..." McCain: "Can I finish." (And then he keeps kind of complaining like a very old man.)
McCain: Old people don't understand anything. To Obama: We promised change when we campaigned. Actually John, that was Barry's slogan, yours was... I forget.
McCain: "This bill was put together with shady dealing... Uhh, I say that with all due respect." Fuck you.
Wait, I'm back. Can't miss WAR HERO PRESIDENTIAL FAILURE John McCain.
Ok, I have to eat lunch now. Goodbye Grandpa Miller Seymour Hoffman! I hope your acne clears up! Wait, did he just say to what extent can you rape under health care? Oh, "rate." Bye.
Wait a second! George Miller is totally Philip Seymour Hoffman! Except old! No wonder I want him as my grandpa. "I have two artificial hips, arthritis and kidney stones. If I tried to move insurance, I'd be dead... If you have acne you can be denied care." And then he shows three pages of Blue Cross policy consisting of conditions that will deny you coverage. That does suck.
George Miller from California has a really nice head of white hair and a pleasant mustache. I wish he was my grandpa.
He said "doody." Heh.
Cracker doctor: "Pre-existing conditions are... tricky. Because how else can the insurance companies make billions of dollars of profit which will find its way into RNC coffers? Right? That just seems obvious to me." Also, let's buy apples.
Some cracker doctor from Louisiana who says insurance, heavy on the first syllable. Kind of brings up the Tea Baggers and how they represent the American people, which, totally, we are all Tea Baggers (when we have had too much Kahlua). "We can agree there's too much stupid paperwork, right? Cuz I'm a doctor and I'm sick of it."
Obama: "Ok, let's just talk about what we agree on, ok? You can't just be suddenly dropped; no pre-existing condition stuff; no annual limits..." Cut away to John McCain, who's licking his lips and dreaming of killing Charlie. Jesus Christ can we break for lunch already?!!?
Obama: "Hey Jon Kyl, I saw you shaking your head while I was talking, you dick." Jon Kyl: "Do the people know better, or does Washington know better?" Obama: "Dude, that's just a talking point. WTF?"
Clyburn: What about the people too dumb to understand health insurance policies, which is pretty much all of us? (Obama look bored. "Shut up, Jim.")
You know what's an important part of improving health care in America? Breaking for lunch.
James Clyburn is telling a story about a small town in South Carolina where 30 percent of the people who show up in the local ER are not there for emergencies. Yeah, tell us something new and exciting.
Obama: "This is not a government takeover of health insurance. So you can all eat a dick."
Please break for lunch soon.
Obama tries to respond to Kyl's wordstorm with "imagine I'm a self-employed dude with terrible high-deductible insurance." And then something about buying apples and oranges. He's not exactly cutting through Kyl's wordstorm here. Though I guess he already made this point below, at 11am.
Jon Kyl is a storm of words here, and even though it's all kind of Greek to me, it sounds good (if you want to kill health reform).
Minority whip Jon Kyl (missing some letters there, Jon?): "Do you trust Washington or the states?" Umm, neither? But more so than insurance companies? Is that right? Do I get coverage? More on that premium increase thing that Lamarr the Cactus just wanted to whisper about at Barry's locker. Oh, so now this bill is also a "job killer," and will also turn everyone gay. Taxes bad, also.
Thank you Chuck, for pointing out how similar this bill is to the 1997 health care reform proposals by... Republicans.
Chuck Schumer, New York represent! "How about those crazy medical bills that itemize every piece of toilet paper you use in the hospital." Whoa, Chuck's really down with the SPY PATIENTS. You know, I think I could do that job: "Can I just get one more of those myolefarctial scrapes... PLEASE."
Ooh, anecdote from Barry about getting car insurance out of college: he got rear-ended and when he tried to use his insurance, he realized his policy was really just set up to meet the minimum legal standards, not to fix his car. "Maybe that works for a kid's first car, but not if you have breast cancer." C+ at best, Barry.
Ha. Obama to the waddly timekeeper McConnell: "I didn't include my opening statement in your timekeeping, BECAUSE... I'M THE PRESIDENT."
Paul Ryan from Wisconsin brings up state rights. Whatever.
Mitch McConnell is timing everything and, like the kid who can't actually play in the game, brings up the following important point: "By my count, Democrats have been talking for 52 minutes, Republicans for only 24." Leadership.
Rob Andrews from Jersey: "My friend this, my friend that..." Everybody calls everybody "friend" even though they hate each other. Some story about a C-Section that I don't understand. Fuck, this shit is complicated. John Kline: "No ones complaining, this C-Section story is a red herring." Now they're being dicks to each other. BUT MY FRIEND, WITH ALL RESPECT (you're not really my friend). Andrews' point here is that big insurance companies shouldn't be allowed to get between patients and doctors. Well, that's weird.
Obama to Camp: "Dude, shut it about the CBO and the premiums. Me and Lamarr the Invisible Cactus got this one."
Dave Camp, some dick from Michigan: "If you really cared about cutting costs, you shouldn't spend anything, ever, on the American people." FUCK ME, TORT REFORM!!! Drink!
Baucus: Seriously, we're close, can we go? Also, again, government exchanges are a Republican idea, and they'll be just like Orbitz or Expedia. Cool right? PIZZATIME!!!
Not surprisingly, nobody is really responding to actual questions that are being asked of them. They are just old white guys talking (cept for the Prez, obvs).
Mad Max Baucus: "You know, I think we're actually really close on this everybody! Let's go get pizza!"
Some dude named John Kline from Minnesota just wants to go step by step. Bah. Basically agrees with the premise but doesn't want sweeping reform. "Small businesses!" Drink.
Ok I'm back (and I think I may have a pre-existing condition, crap). Obama's talking about something... He's proud of the First Lady... Oh, fat kids. America your kids are fat, let's eliminate them. Oh wait, no, let's eliminate... something? Ok, "Republicans, why do you object to allowing people to buy into larger group health coverage?" This will give them more negotiating power with the insurance companies, which should drive down costs, which is how the Free Market works, no?
I have to go pee, or some day I'll have to have surgery for kidney stones, which I will never be able to afford.
That quote Steny read? IT WAS FROM JOHN MCCAIN!!! Damn.
Apparently Steny has a friend who only makes 33K a year. Yeah right.
Steny Hoyer offers a quote: "We should have health care for every American citizen." Also, what the hell is "Steny" short for? Stenobald? Stencil? Stenix VI?
You know, except for horrible jowels-in-a-suit McConnell bringing up polls, this is pretty damn civilized and reasonable. What the hell? Coburn just suggested UNDERCOVER PATIENTS. Yup, patient spies to spy on doctors to prevent fraud. Because as the Constitution says: "If every American is watching every other American all the time, everything will be ok."
Tom Coburn says "ruff" for roof. He's a man of the people. Except wait, HE WANTS TO TELL AMERICANS WHAT TO EAT SO THEY'RE NOT SO FAT. Welcome to the Commune Tovarich Coburn!
Oh god, Tom Coburn on cutting costs... HE'S A DOCTOR HE KNOWS WHAT TO DO. Just waiting on the old tort reform subject (which would save .5 percent of total costs). Oh, he's bringing up fraud, blaming YOU the American health thief. THIEF. Ah, here we go, tort reform. "All the doctors here order all kinds of tests because they're risk averse."
Lamarr the Cactus is actually pretty nice about the disagreement, doesn't want to fight in public. Obama: Sure, whatever bitch, I'm still right. Now Mitch McConnell is just cold being a dick, bringing up a poll that says Americans are 55 to 35 against this bill, and Americans are against reconciliation (because that's something all Americans can understand pretty easily through a polling question.)
Uh oh, Lamarr the Invisible Cactus is fighting with Obama about premiums rising or not. They're fighting over the CBO and Obama is, well, kind of schooling him. Basically, Lamarr was trying to say the CBO said premiums would go up on existing policies, but what they actually meant was that because families would have better options they might choose to purchase better packages, which would be more expensive. CHOICE!
Obama talked to some people in Tennessee who had to fire everyone because of health care. Didn't really go for the emotional jugular there (unlike Reid's Jesus story). Oooh snap, "We want to go with government exchanges, which is a Republican idea.
Obama: "We have to deal with costs or we're going to be broke forever and ever." I really wish I'd had a professor like him in college.
Obama: "Not surprising that you're all going overtime because you're all elected officials." Hahaha. Now he's talking to Reid's imaginary friend "Lamarr."
So, they're sitting in a square, and Harry Reid's been telling a story about a young man in Reno named "Jesus" who's kid had a cleft palate and even though he had health insurance... Yeah, you get it. Also, he keeps saying "My friend Lamarr," so since I got here late I'm going to assume that's an imaginary talking cactus.