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"Murphy was an optimist!"

What happens when you yell “liar” at the President? September 10, 2009 7:58 am

Posted by Doug McCaughan in : Politics, Regional Politics (SE), Touchy Subjects, United States
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Question:If you, Republican Joe Wilson, show a utter lack of respect for the office of the presidency, a breech of protocol, a total lack of decorum, and a complete disregard for the level of professionalism expect by your elected position, what happens?

Answer: In less than 12 hours, 1362 people raise $45,475 to help elect Democrat Rob Miller as your replacement in the House of Representatives.

Update: 20 hours later, 4531 people have donated $155,362.

Update: 24 hours later, 5832 people have dontaed $203,070. Along with other Rob Miller campaigns on ActBlue, volunteers have donated a total of $592,075 to see Democrat Rob Miller displace Republican Joe Wilson in South Carolina’s 2nd district US House Representative.

See also: Joe Wilson is your pre-existing condition and career finance.

Update: Wilson health care industry darling and this is not the first time he has gone off at the mouth. See also and 2002 Joe Wilson lies about Saddam.

Update: Rich points to a youtube video of Democrats applauding during a state of the union address about blocking a bill as an example of Wilson like behavior. I understand their message in applauding goes against the President’s desires but it matches the excepted decorum on the Senate and no one outright demeaned the President.

The House is considering responding to Wilson’s actions.

"It is a clear violation of the rules of the House, and it needs to be resolved on the floor of the House either by an apology or by a resolution," said Brendan Daly, a spokesman for Speaker Nancy Pelosi.

House rules and precedents provide substantial guidance on how a House member can and cannot refer to the president while speaking on the floor, and the guidelines state that it has been found impermissible to call the president a liar. The House was in formal session at the time of the speech.

[Source, New York Times, Heckler’s Behavior May Bring Action in House]

The White House has stiffened its stand against providing health care to illegal aliens. Whether this is what Obama said he was going to do or a response to Wilson won’t ever be known but is irrelevant as the end result is the same.

Here’s a tricky one. Joe Wilson Voted to Provide Taxpayer Money for Illegal Immigrants’ Healthcare. This is the crap that happens in our Congress.

However, in 2003, Wilson voted to provide federal funds for illegal immigrants’ healthcare. The vote came on the Medicare Prescription Drug, Improvement and Modernization Act of 2003, which contained Sec. 1011 authorizing $250,000 annually between 2003 and 2008 for government reimbursements to hospitals who provide treatment for uninsured illegal immigrants. The program has been extended through 2009 and there is currently a bipartisan bill in Congress to make it permanent. [Source, OpenCongress, Joe Wilson Voted to Provide Taxpayer Money for Illegal Immigrants’ Healthcare]

The misleading part of this is that the bill was "a much larger bill that contained many Republican priorities." Our bills should not be large bills with unrelated or concession type riders that force our lawmakers to let things slip through. I do not think this serves the people as much as it opens doors to serve the politicians and lobbyists with back scratching. "I’ve vote YES to your bill if you add this minor section."

Craig Ferguson’s response to Wilson.

Comments after advertisement


1. Morgan - September 10, 2009


2. Jimmeh - September 11, 2009

So what happened to speaking truth to power? and dissent is patriotic? You thought it was funny when the guy threw the shoe at Bush. You never spoke out against all the harasment of Bush. Obama was rightly called a liar right after he deliberately told a lie.

3. Doug McCaughan - September 11, 2009

Jimmeh, you dissent after the speech when the cameras are on you like the surgeon who spoke out against reform. He respectfully waited until after the speech. If I witnessed someone acting like Joe Wilson toward a GW Bush speech, I would have criticized that person too. GW Bush was the worst president we have ever had but he was still my president and the office demands particular respects and during a Presidential speech you don’t heckle!

How is his statement that the health care plan won’t cover illegal aliens a lie?

4. Doug McCaughan - September 11, 2009

The excepted political theater during the speeches is sneers, making faces, and not standing. These not disruptive actions communicate a message without interrupting the leader of your country.

5. Laura - September 11, 2009

the shoe was thrown at Bush after 7 years of his lies and after his santioning the killing of Mothers, children our soldiers and Irag soldiers in Iraq. & long years of his crap. Obama just got in the office and he is talking about healthcare and he gets heckled. I see a HUGE difference.

6. Doug McCaughan - September 11, 2009

I know it’s because I’ve seen too many movies, but I’m still befuddled as to 1) how that man managed to sneak a shoe into the press conference and 2) why a secret service agent didn’t throw himself in front of the shoe. I would have expected for weeks to see reports on CNN with titles like “Valiant secret service agent clings to life after sacrificing self for President Bush” “Doctors discover rare plant in Amazon jungle which may remove the stench from heroic secret service agent’s nose allowing him to return to a nearly normal life” “Secret Service hero does not regret his actions but holds contempt toward Zappos” “If the shoe fits…”

7. Tom Jones - September 11, 2009

Obama isn’t talking about healthcare for U.S. citizens. He is talking about healthcare for General Electric (GE). General Electric CEO Jeff Immelt is basically in bed with Obama especially since G.E. owns NBC. Very little criticism of the president has been heard on NBC. G.E. stands to make billions if the “public option” is passed. On top of that GE is heavily investing in green technology, and if the carbon tax is passed GE will try to get billions of dollars in contracts in the cap and trade program. No wonder Obama and Jeff Immelt are holding hands because they are scratching each others back no criticism of the president in exchanged for contracts worth billions of dollars.

8. Doug McCaughan - September 11, 2009

Hello Tom Jones! Thanks for the GE info. I’ll have to look that up. Do you have any supporting evidence that GE stands to make billions? And if they do, does it really matter? The public option is still a good thing for the public regardless of GE’s outcome. Now, if GE’s profits from the public option are illegal, then that illegal activity needs to be stopped but the public option should still happen.

I’m not sure I’m following the logic on the green technology. Are other companies being prevented from making the same investments with the same potential for profit?

9. Tom Jones - September 11, 2009

The public option is not a good idea when it will bankrupt America and bring the quality of health care down. There is already a shortage of doctors, now imaging throwing 20-30 million people into the pot…

When a CEO of a company has unrestricted access to the president’s ear like Jeff Immelt does, it’s dangerous. It provides for a situation where companies are creating policies and taking the reins of this countries instead of elected officials… Plus, it creates unfair advantage for G.E. and the high probability of corruption. Remember when Halliburton kept winning no-bid contracts in Iraq? I am pretty sure Cheney had a hand in that. Don’t forgot the huge amount of corruption that followed Halliburton at every corner when in Iraq.

When the press is controlled by big time corporations (that have a heavy hand in consumer products) we are not free and neither is the press.

G.E. will automatically win on no-bid contracts from the government.

10. Doug McCaughan - September 11, 2009

I don’t see the public option bankrupting us nor bringing down the quality of health care. And for the 20-30-50 million (whatever the number) that don’t have health care, coming up from nothing to something is a increase in the quality of health care not a decrease.

Agreed on GE/Halliburton. This is the first I’m hearing about GE so I just want to confirm it is not another red herring.

11. Tom Jones - September 11, 2009

If there are no doctors is there any health care?

If the government can’t even fund social security and medicare where are we going to get the money for the public option?

12. Scott - September 11, 2009

Word is the funding will come from eliminating inefficiencies in Medicare and Medicaid. That’s the word anyway.

But here’s what I don’t get–why aren’t these inefficiencies being eliminated already since it is such an easy solution? Why not eliminate the inefficiencies first, showing that a gov’ment health plan CAN be run efficiently, and THEN try to implement the public option.

It seems like it would be an easier sell, doesn’t it? Seems like a great opportunity to say “I told you so” to the naysayers and win over the people sitting on the fence.

I guess I just don’t understand the strategy of politics.

13. Tom Jones - September 11, 2009

Total Medicare spending reached $440 billion for fiscal year 2007, or 16% of all federal spending. The only larger categories of federal spending are Social Security and defense. It will only grow to a point where all we are doing is working round the clock to pay for health care and not enjoy the finer things in life.

14. Doug McCaughan - September 11, 2009

I’ve got a deliverable I have to finish for a client. I’ll try to answer this question over the weekend.

15. Jon - September 11, 2009

As I understand it, the program will be paid for with premiums just like they are today. Instead of paying a HIGHLY inefficient insurance company (~20% overhead) who has the primary goal of profits, we will pay the government who’s primary goal is efficiency (medicare ~5% overhead). And to your point of ‘working round the clock to pay for health care’, I would rather pay for health care for the entire population of the United States than waste money on needless and reckless wars and ever increasing defense budgets.

That is not to say defending our nation is not necessary. I am saying how much we spend is F’n ridiculous. Stop ‘intervening’ all over the world. Most of our foreign problems stem from us thinking we know what is better for another group of people. We are basically a country split 50/50 on everything. Who are we to say that something is right or wrong for someone else when we can’t agree on what is right or wrong for ourselves. When you aren’t pissing the world off, you don’t have to be ready for a fight every corner you turn.

Spend the money on R&D which will remove our dependence on fossil fuels, science in general, education and health care and bring our country back to a state of prosperity instead of building an even bigger board with a bigger nail in it.

16. LissaKay - September 11, 2009

Government efficiency? When has THAT ever happened? It certainly is not about to start during THIS administration, not with a President that has QUADRUPLED the deficit, tripled unemployment and devalued the dollar to where our economy is on the verge of being unsustainable.

Intervening in other countries is not a bad thing when we are trying to stop crazy people from killing us. Saying “pretty please stop” does not and will not ever work. Only killing them first works. Evil exists. Deal with it or die. When have we ever intervened when it was not for our security and defense? Oh right … Bosnia. But that’s OK, it was a Democrat.

Tom, for reasons I cannot disclose publicly, I can tell you that your theory about GE is not accurate. However, you are spot on about fixing the programs we already have, and are on the brink of collapse. We do not need a ‘public option’ at all. Fix and expand Medicaid, that should take care of the 10 – 15 million truly needy, chronically uninsured, and it would come at a far smaller price and target the people who need it. Medicare is a money pit of waste and inefficiency. Of course, being run by the government, do we really expect anything different? Fix it and apply the savings to Medicaid.

Commercial insurance could use some changes – a safety net for those who are “uninsurable”, greater portability of employer sponsored plans, more options for major medical plans with high deductibles and allow interstate competition between companies.

Funny, the Republican Congress proposed several reforms in recent years that would have addressed some of those issues. Most never made it to the floor for a vote, those that did …. well, what was Obama’s voting record on those?

Heck, let medical insurance be underwritten and sold like auto insurance is … premium savings makes a great carrot to entice people to improve their health, and also to not abuse their coverage by visiting the doctor for every little sniffle or ache. Let’s do away with these tiny little office visit co-pays, make it cost more than dinner out to see the doctor. When people actually pay for something, they take better care of it.

Bottom line … the government does not owe anyone free or cheap medical care. No one has the right to demand they be given free or cheap medical care. I cannot imagine why anyone would want to have the government in charge of such a personal, private and intimate part of their life. People chafe at the idea that the government might know that a telephone call was placed from your home and where it was answered, but would allow the same government to have access to their medical information.

I don’t get it.

Don’t fool yourselves into believing that a “public option” would mean that everyone would have unfettered and free access to an all-you-can-eat buffet of medical care. There will be limitations and restrictions placed upon a government handout, and the decision making process will be skewed toward who will benefit the most, and offer the best return for the medical care given … in other words, the 35 year old, employed, otherwise healthy person will be a more suitable candidate for the investment of government spending than will an elderly retired person with a host of illnesses, or the disabled who will never be self-sustaining or productive, or the very young (can always make more to replace the defective ones, right?).

Obama may not be Bush, but he is far from being any better – he lies, he manipulates and he is apparently not all that bright if he is pushing for even more spending in economic times like this. He has acted in complete disregard for the US Constitution, and his plans threaten the liberty of all Americans. He is not our savior – quite the opposite, in fact. It is well past time to take the rose-colored glasses off and see this man for who he is and where he came from, and what his agenda for this country is.

17. Tom Jones - September 11, 2009

The government doesn’t have a good track history of efficiency.

There is nothing wrong with spending money on the military because what you don’t realize is that the military spends a lot of money on R&D for sciences in general. Digital computing, mathematical cryptography, meteorology, rocket science, geo-science and astrophysics. Don’t forget the whole space program was a byproduct of military funding. Plus, medicine itself benefits from military war. The Iraqi-Afghan war have made leaps and bounds in artificial limbs technology (not that its a necessary good thing but it will benefit those whose lose limbs outside of war).

Now if we can use those funds and direct them towards the space program which I believe can bring the same results as in R&D and such, then I am all ears. Otherwise you can thank the military research dept for that cell phone you carry because they have been working with wireless technology since WW1.

18. Tom Jones - September 11, 2009

nice post LissaKay!

19. Rich - September 12, 2009

What happens when you yell “Liar” at a president who is lying?

You raise $750,000 in campaign contributions.

So much for the $203,000.

Doug, you say you never saw anyone interrupting President Bush, or disrespecting him during a speech. How about this bit during his State of the Union Speech?

That was you Democrat party members, jeering and interrupting a President you say should be respected. What did you say at the time?

Sorry Doug, but your indignation is too one-sided.