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WDEL Blog: Allan Loudell

The bane of Washington: Reaping profit from your own creation

Whether you think the President's health-care overhaul is a godsend, an abomination, or somewhere in between, this article from The NEW YORK TIMES is exhibit A for why so many folks despise Washington... that folks can profiteer from the very monstrosity they created...


http://www.nytimes.com/2013/09/18/us/politics/reaping-profit-after-assisting-on-health-law.html?hp

Posted at 8:33am on September 18, 2013 by Allan Loudell

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Comments on this post:

billsmith
Wed, Sep 18, 2013 8:48am
The covert right-wing talk show host is at it again. Of all the examples available of the "revolving door" between government and business, he picks one to discredit The Affordable Care Act (and stir up the crazies).

Mike from Delaware
Wed, Sep 18, 2013 10:18am
Allan: Here is a snipet from the link you provided that probably explains why there is the "revolving door" between government and business.

"Yet the progression from government to the private sector is also predictable, a window into the peculiar rhythms of life in the capital. Young aides, often fresh out of college or graduate school, acquire highly specialized knowledge but eventually settle down, build lives and long for jobs that pay more and let them see their children at night."

If you've ever watched The West Wing [from what I read the show offers a pretty realistic view of life serving the Prez], one of the things I learned from watching that show is that those folks have no life outside their jobs. It's one thing to do that for, say, a four-year term [the real gung-ho stayed for an 8-year term and seemed to be very burned out by that last year], but then you move on into the private sector so you can have a life, and most likely pull in a far larger salary to better enjoy that new life. It's sort of like paying their dues and serving an apprenticeship as a unionized craftsperson does.

Once that's done, the worker is then ready to reap the benefits of that hard never-ending work, be they craftsfolks or those who served in government.

Obviously, as it's DEMS now who control the government and are benefiting the most in getting these highly paid jobs, G.O.P. folks will complain, but when the G.O.P. is in control and they are the ones benefitting, then the DEMS will complain. That's just more of the same ole, same ole one upsmanship both parties dump on the other.

EarlGrey
Wed, Sep 18, 2013 10:54am
But Bill, this story was in The Times (NYT) ...how can it be "right-wing" ;)

As individuals begin to see how their job, life, family, faith and healthcare are affected by The "affordable" Care Act they are starting to see it doesn't work as promised...dude, even Union leader Hoffa is against it. Unions want out, big businesses want out and little people will be stuck footing the bill for this trainwreck (btw, trainwreck is the word used by author of O-Care to describe what it has become). 75% of all new jobs are part-timers...bye-bye 40 hour work week at one job...instead it's two part-time jobs and lousy benfits.
http://m.huffpost.com/us/entry/3788365
http://m.huffpost.com/us/entry/3101801


Defund ObamaCare!

EarlGrey
Wed, Sep 18, 2013 11:07am
"After nearly four years as counselor to Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, she left government last year to work for Sidley Austin, which represents insurers, pharmaceutical companies, device makers and others affected by the law. She is not a registered lobbyist, but rather a “strategic adviser,” although some call that a distinction without a difference."

It doesn't matter which "ethics" agreements are signed, if you have the right friends in D.C.

..."some animals are more equal than other"~Orwell

JimH
Wed, Sep 18, 2013 11:18am
I have mentioned on here before that a relative's health insurance cost has increased from zero dollars to over 13-hundred dollars per quarter this year. And the deductible has doubled. Mine will increase 75-percent next year.

A co-worker has a college-age son working at a bank part-time. He is employed to work a 20-hour week. Yet each week, he is scheduled for 33-hours. The bank gets a fulltime employee. But since he is classified as part-time, the company is excused from Obamacare.

Congress is exempt from the new law, and at the same time, members of Congress have set up their staff members to transition into good-paying jobs explaining the law. It's win-win for the politicos.

billsmith
Wed, Sep 18, 2013 12:27pm
Earl: Thank you for making the point for me. What is described is endemic throughout government. The New York Times has reported on this regularly and frequently over the years; not just in the context of the Affordable Care Act. But you and others like you latch onto this one example as an excuse to justify your mindless, unthinking and visceral hatred of the Affordable Care Act.

You all didn't hate this health plan so much when Newt proposed it to counter "Hillarycare" 20 years ago. You didn't hate it so much when Mitt put it into law and into effect in Massachusetts seven years ago (where "Romneycare" remains popular). So you hate it now because either (1) Right-wing talk shows told you to, (2) You tea people are against anything the administration tries to do on general principles, (3) Because you hate Obama for his racial background or (4) All of the above.


EarlGrey
Wed, Sep 18, 2013 12:32pm
As Republicans attempt to repeal O-Care they have also created an alternative solution that sounds like it would actually be good for all Americans.

In an effort to contend with one of the more popular aspects of Obamacare, the Republican bill — which was drafted by a committee subgroup headed by Rep. Phil Roe, a doctor — would also create a 10-year, $25 billion fund to lower costs for Americans afflicted with pre-existing conditions such as cancer.
Additionally, it would let people carry their insurance with them from job to job, and cut wasteful legal costs by reforming medical lawsuits.


The new bill’s features — especially the ability to buy insurance from out-of-state vendors — are popular among his constituents, Scalise said. Also, Americans will be able to reject insurance coverage currently mandated by federal regulators, he said.

“… if you want a barebones policy, [or] if you want a Cadillac plan,” Americans will be able to purchase what they prefer, Scalise said





http://dailycaller.com/2013/09/18/revealed-the-gops-new-plan-to-repeal-replace-obamacare/

EarlGrey
Wed, Sep 18, 2013 12:40pm
...And Bill, yes, I was against it when it was Newt, Hillary, and Mitt.

Mitt at least limited it to a state-by-state decision which allows one to move from that state if you don't like and can't afford the taxes/economy/other issues tied into health-care coverage. If Delaware wanted to mandate health-care for DE residents, it would be fine but if the entire nation is forced into the system, then it is wrong...I don't care if a Republican or Democrat is pushing the issue!

billsmith
Wed, Sep 18, 2013 3:55pm
Earl: Newt's plan was presented as the Republican alternative to Hillary's plan.

So, if Newt-Mitt-Obamacare is a bad idea (in your view), why is it OK if a state implements it? Somebody is still being "forced into the system." The rednecks in Sussex County would be making the same complaint.

So, you want to go back to people being turned down for pre-existing conditions, and hospitals making you pay more because they have to treat uninsured health-care deadbeats?

Mike from Delaware
Wed, Sep 18, 2013 7:48pm
Here is an interesting news item. A poll found that more Republicans support the Affordable Care Act than do Obamacare. Truth is stranger than Fiction, enjoy.

http://freakoutnation.com/2013/09/17/true-story-republicans-support-the-affordable-care-act-more-than-obamacare/

billsmith
Wed, Sep 18, 2013 8:38pm
Call it Romneycare or Newtcare and even more will like it.

Nothing strange here. Put Obama's name on ice cream and bigots like Earl will hate it.

It also shows how meaningless polls are. You change the wording of questions or even the order in which they are asked and you get completely different results. Shows what a sucker the right-wing talk show host is to take them so seriously.


EarlGrey
Wed, Sep 18, 2013 10:19pm
Bill: Please try reading what others actually post...I have said repeatedly that I don't care who's pushing socialized health-care or which title it's called (0bamaCare or The Affordable Care Act)...I DON'T WANT IT!!!

I don't think it would be good for Delaware, but if the state is stupid enough to demand it then give it to them...and someone like me will vote with his feet and move to a free state.

Those who have no real arguments always default to name-calling and demonizing their opposition... try facts instead of insults on this blog.

mrpizza
Wed, Sep 18, 2013 11:59pm
EarlGrey: If you want to move to a free state, I think you'll have to "go west young man." I think Montana and North Dakota are about the only ones left.

billsmith
Thu, Sep 19, 2013 5:21am
Earl: You can still vote with your feet. Oh, wait! The rest of the developed world already has universal health care.
You tea bigots are really sick. You have "demonized" yourselves. I wonder how right-wing talk show hosts who pander to you are able to sleep at night. Clearly, they are without conscience.

mrpizza
Thu, Sep 19, 2013 7:37am
Hey Bill, as Obama's policies continue to break America and drive more and more people into bankruptcy and poverty, there's about to be an explosion in the porta-potty business due to all the protests and riots that will result from it, so all those protesters will need a place to relieve themselves. It would be a great investment opportunity for you to look into.

Mike from Delaware
Thu, Sep 19, 2013 8:31am
Found an interesting site that shows how history repeats itself. The TEA/GOP opposing such programs as the Affordable Care Act [ACT] - aka Obamacare for TEA/GOP folks - is the same sort of organization as American Liberty League of the 1930's. The American Liberty League opposed FDR's New Deal and Social Security. The link for this site is below. I've included a snipet from their article, yep History does repeat itself.

"August 23, 1934 and After: American Liberty League Opposes New Deal, Social Security"

"According to the Encyclopedia of the Great Depression, ALL [American Liberty League] was organized by “disgruntled business conservatives, Wall Street financiers, right-wing opponents of Franklin D. Roosevelt’s New Deal, and defeated rivals within Roosevelt’s Democratic Party.” ALL is financed by, among others, industrialists Pierre, Irenee, and Lammot du Pont; former Democratic Party chairman John J. Raskob; financier E.F. Hutton; and executive Sewell Avery of the department store chain Montgomery Ward. Most of the politicians in the organization are Republicans, but these are joined by anti-Roosevelt Democrats such as Alfred E. Smith, who ran for president in 1928."......

......."ALL unsuccessfully fights to block federal regulations and additional taxes on business, the creation of public power utilities, pro-labor barganing rights, agricultural production controls and subsidies, New Deal relief and public jobs programs, the Works Progress Administration (WPA), Social Security, and other Roosevelt-era programs and initiatives.".............

To read the entire piece go to link below.

http://www.historycommons.org/entity.jsp?entity=american_liberty_league_1

billsmith
Thu, Sep 19, 2013 9:04am
Pizza: Apparently being toilet-trained is your proudest accomplishment. By the way, do you have any figures to support your claims about people being driven into bankruptcy by the Affordable Care Act? I'll save you the trouble. You don't. There aren't any. Now, people driven into bankruptcy by Bush's "great recession." There are statistics for that.

Earl: You still haven't said why you hate health-care reform so much. Do you have health insurance? Have you ever tried to purchase health-care insurance as an individual (for several times the cost employers pay)? Have you ever been turned down because of some pre-existing condition? Ever had your claim denied? Ever looked at an insurance company's annual report to see how profitable it is? What is it you like about the current system so much? Do you work for an insurance company?

kavips
Thu, Sep 19, 2013 10:15am
What is totally missing from Earl's argument is the millions of people who DO benefit from Obama-care. People who have never had insurance, will now have it: 47 million. Compare that gain with 2 million rich people whose costs will go up.

Others before me have stated eventually we WILL go to single-payer; simply because internationally, it is the BEST option out there. It works, and everyone using it is happy. This is just the first step, because there was not enough clout to pass single-payer the first time around.

Of course bloviators for insurance companies will expound otherwise. Because that is what they are. Bloviators for insurance companies.

If I had open access to your personal checking accounts and it was about to be closed off, sure, I'd complain too. But those people who own the checking accounts are overjoyed...

All the arguments about Obamacare can be boiled down to those same monopolistic arguments once made against imports, against free trade, against competition, against free markets, against all the same, which have been made throughout our nation's history. Almost all were over-ridden because all were very harmful to consumers who were tired of paying higher prices for cheap products just so those monopolies selling them could become even wealthier...

The prices quoted by Earl Grey for insurance coverage on the debut of this program, will fall faster than the prices do of new technology... once the hype is done....

An iphone on debut sells now for over 600 dollars, and a year latter, a new one of the same can be found for 100 dollars, just to get it off the shelves for the next new item...

What's missing from Earl's sky-is-falling catastrophic prediction, is... just like phones, the acknowledgement that there are many plans from which to choose. IF you don't want an iphone, get last year's Android which does 99.9% of the same.

Notice how he tags "Defund Obamacare Now" to the end of his statement? That is all he is worried about. He is just on the wrong side of competition.

Insurance is a commodity that is cheap as dirt. The reasons we have been paying so much more is because of a lack of competition that this law will now undo....

Personally, as one who has screamed at insurance companies for denying coverage over what is PLAINLY STATED IN THEIR POLICIES, hearing their proxies now screaming in pain over lost profits they are going to be paying back, is thoroughly hand-rubbingly enjoyable. It is so satisfying to see them finally reap through their crocodile tears, what they sowed upon the rest of us for so many years...

mrpizza
Thu, Sep 19, 2013 1:42pm
Kavips: B_ _ _ S_ _ _!

mrpizza
Thu, Sep 19, 2013 1:53pm
Just as the American Liberty League was around in the 1930's to stand against communism, so is the TEA Party and many other great organizations such as American Center for Law and Justice around today also to stand against communism.

Mike from Delaware
Thu, Sep 19, 2013 1:58pm
What the issue is for our TEA/GOP friends can be explained this way: Our American society has been based on employers provided health-care coverage since WWII. Unions were very strong, and factory jobs were the catalyst for the middle-class.

Today, the unions [other than government-sector jobs] are weak. Factory jobs have left our shores and continue to leave for the less environmentally friendly, less salaried, workers of the Third World.

The American employers who still provide employer-paid, health-care insurance for their folks suffer a disadvantage against their global corporate competitors. Those other nations have a single-payer system, so their corporations aren't saddled with that massive expense as ours are.

The G.O.P./TEA folks see a single-payer system as socialistic [In their minds, that's a cousin to Communistic] so they see even the Affordable Care Act [Obamacare] as a step towards America becoming even more of a socialistic-type nation than we've been since the 1930's when FDR's New Deal/Social Security plans were started. The same reason the American Liberty League of the 1930's fought against the New Deal and Social Security.

THAT's the issue for those folks. Even though all TEA/G.O.P. folks pay into Social Security and will collect their benefits when they hit the correct age, they still hate Social Security and would prefer an IRA-type set-up. They see that as a capitalistic solution to the "evil" socialistic Social Security plan.

Good luck changing their minds on that. They'd rather have millions of Americans NOT have health-care coverage, etc., than have any sort of program that's remotely similar to a "socialistic" plan.

They are so against ANY thing that's could be labeled socialistic, that they vote against any Mass Transit funds, because if you can't afford the bus fare, too bad, walk. What they fail to understand is Mass Transit benefits all, because IF 1/3 of the communters took DART to work, your drive would be far better with 1/3 less congestion. You'd save gas, take less time, etc. So its a win/win, but government-subsidized mass transit is something those pointy headed folks in Europe do, and we all know THEY are Socialists.

THAT's the issue. Figure out how to change their perception that the US will become a USSR if we allow a socialistic healthcare plan, and you'll solve the problem.

Mike from Delaware
Thu, Sep 19, 2013 2:00pm
Apparently Mrpizza was posting his thoughts while I was typing mine. He makes my case.

billsmith
Thu, Sep 19, 2013 2:17pm
Pizza must have missed the news. The commies went out of business more than 20 years ago. Terrorists are the new boogeyman used to justify all the money going to the military-industrial complex. Other developed nations are not so gullible so they spend tax dollars on health-care, education, pensions ... all those things in which the U.S. lags behind.
Pizza, in case you also missed, the following also are not in business any more...
Eastern Airlines
Schwinn bikes
Pan American World Airlines
Lionel model trains
Commodore computers
Montgomery-Ward
TWA

kavips
Thu, Sep 19, 2013 2:18pm
You can believe what you want, but at least recognize that you are in a little hole and the rest of the world has passed you by.

The U.S. pays 17% of GDP for Medical costs. If we paid per person as much as Japan, every American would get a refund check of $5000 per year. That is how much you are being overcharged.

So when anyone says B*** S*** without providing contradictory facts, they are making a comment about themselves, endorsing the idea of believing what one wants and never challenging it.

So complain all you want. Single-payer insurance is good for everyone... (except those insurance companies that are forcing you to pay $5000 more per year than you could pay otherwise...)

kavips
Thu, Sep 19, 2013 2:20pm
and Mr. Pizza... How well did the American Liberty League in the 1930's succeed at stopping Social Security? LOL!!!!

They said it was "communist", you know...

kavips
Thu, Sep 19, 2013 2:22pm
And don't forget to clean your shoes really well before delivering pizzas tonight...

Looks like you stepped in something... lol.

kavips
Thu, Sep 19, 2013 2:25pm
and nice one, BillS.. Comparing the defunct threat of communism to corporations existing back then that have similarly expired to prove it is an old outdated concept .. I'm going to have to steal that one.

mrpizza
Thu, Sep 19, 2013 5:58pm
According to Matthew 24:24, "even the elect would be deceived." I know the Lord must be returning very soon when Christians of my own generation advocate communism.

billsmith
Thu, Sep 19, 2013 6:24pm
CORRECTION: "The Bain of Washington: Reaping profit from your own creation"

Hey, Pizza: Your god is a communist.

"All the believers were one in heart and mind. No one claimed that any of their possessions was their own, but they shared everything they had. With great power the apostles continued to testify to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus. And God’s grace was so powerfully at work in them all that there were no needy persons among them. For from time to time those who owned land or houses sold them, brought the money from the sales and put it at the apostles’ feet, and it was distributed to anyone who had need. - Acts 4:32-35 Gee, sounds like from each according to his ability, to each according to his need. In the next chapter, Pope Peter I strikes dead two people who hold out and keep some money for themselves.

The first generation of Christians advocated communism and Jesus didn't come back.

mrpizza
Thu, Sep 19, 2013 7:12pm
Hey Bill, you're completely right except for one thing: The "communism" Jesus advocated was completely voluntary, and done in love and from a giving heart, not by government force of gunpoint.

billsmith
Thu, Sep 19, 2013 7:43pm
Really, Pizza? If you didn't put everything into the pot, you died. That's your idea of voluntary? You don't need guns to point at people if you can just smite them dead.

Mike from Delaware
Thu, Sep 19, 2013 9:51pm
The reason the husband & wife were killed is not because they didn't put the entire amount in the pot, but becaused that they lied about it. They were free to give as much as they chose. The problem was their heart attitude ( the reason they gave the money). They wanted to be praised by men for their generous gift so made it sound like they gave the entire amount. Had they said we sold some land & wanted to give this amount of money, there would have been no problem.

kavips
Thu, Sep 19, 2013 11:03pm
Mike you are reading too much into that passage. It doesn't express that. It expresses that one doesn't screw around with God. He wins, always.

And the seed of communism is voluntary, brought about because capitalists are extremely, excessively, horrendously selfish. Those who have no other option, because of capitalistic practices, volunteer to become communists. They then smite those capitalists, and Gulag them to death... :) While millions upon millions cheer outrageously!

Mike from Delaware
Thu, Sep 19, 2013 11:34pm
Kavips: After reading your reply I went & read the passage in Acts & read the commentary provided in a couple of study Bibles (one an ELCA Lutheran Study Bible & one that is an Evangelical Study Bible). Both said they were free to give to God what they wanted, lied about it. They lied to the Holy Spirit.

The Jerusalem church at that time were selling stuff to support each other (communism), but they were't forced to liquidate all their holdings, but probably did eventually ended up selling off most of their stuff. Interestingly later in Acts the Gentile churches St. Paul started did end up financially helping the Jerusalem church. They weren't doing the communist thing.

billsmith
Fri, Sep 20, 2013 4:14am
Once again, MikeFromDelaware sees what he wants to see and reads things to suit how he wants them to be. "They shared everything they had." Everything! No holding back. How explicit do you want it. "No one claimed any possessions of their own." Any! Not forced? Sounds like incredible social pressure, up to and including people dropping dead. Nothing new about cults and mind control. Peter. The Rev. Moon. L. Ron Hubbard. All birds of a feather.

Mike from Delaware
Fri, Sep 20, 2013 9:02am
Billsmith: You are so biased against anything Christian, that you'll only looks to find something bad or evil, rather than seeking understanding of what they were doing.

Note the Gentile Churches didn't do the "communist" thing. They prospered and ended up supporting the Jerusalem church at least for a time.

So in one sense, there were already two different "denominations" in the new Christian church, the "Jewish oriented church" of Jerusalem that James and Peter were leading, and the "Gentile oriented church" that Paul was leading. The two groups did differ and their leaders didn't get along all that well, as the Jerusalem church wanted the Gentile churches to conform to Jewish customs such as circumcision, and the dietary laws.

Interestingly Bill, you want to read about the sharing of all they had very literally, but when they speak about homosexuality being an abomination both in the Hebrew Bible and the Greek written New Testament, then you're all in favor of not being quite so literal. Sounds like you too want to cherry-pick what the Bible is saying.

That is why there are so many different denominations, because we're all human and tend to put emphasis on different things we've seen in the Bible, yet all have the core beliefs in the Risen Christ. That seems to be part of the human condition.

Bottom line Bill, you and I, as everyone else, see through smoked-colored glass. You may be correct, and maybe the Jerusalem church did "force" it congregation to anti-up all they had [they do to my ear come across as being rather dogmatic about stuff], or maybe I'm correct, but we'll not know for sure until the Perfect comes. So why always the malace and hatred? Why can't you discuss this stuff without the venem?

Why can't you give those of us who do not see it as you do, the same respect we give you?

It's obvious that two people can read the same passage and get something different from it. That's why I lean on that Galileo thing of: The scripture is always correct, it's our understanding of what it says that may be in error, and may have to be modified as we grow and learn more.

So why not approach these discussions in that light; it would make for a far more enlightened conversation, and who knows? Both of us might learn something from the other.

Remember the old adage: you get more flies with sugar than with vinegar.

billsmith
Fri, Sep 20, 2013 12:40pm
MikeFromDelaware: When it comes to scripture (and other things) you don't see through "smoke-colored glasses." You see through rose-colored glasses.

And I agree the Bible does say homosexuality is an "abomination." I just don't consider the Bible infallible or even authoritative. It's a collection of ancient myths and superstitions. Like the Illiad, Gilgamesh or the Book of the Dead.
What's curious is how you don't consider the Torah binding on you, even though Jesus said:
"Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them. For truly I tell you, until heaven and earth disappear, not the smallest letter, not the least stroke of a pen, will by any means disappear from the Law until everything is accomplished. Therefore anyone who sets aside one of the least of these commands and teaches others accordingly will be called least in the kingdom of heaven, but whoever practices and teaches these commands will be called great in the kingdom of heaven. For I tell you that unless your righteousness surpasses that of the Pharisees and the teachers of the law, you will certainly not enter the kingdom of heaven."

But you find it more convenient to go by a dream some guy had after smelling bacon cooking in the next apartment.

I see that even your pope wants you all to stop obsessing about other people's sex lives and reproductive choices but I don't doubt you all will come up with some reason to ignore that. Again, you will quote Peter when convenient and ignore his successor when that's convenient.

Mike from Delaware
Fri, Sep 20, 2013 1:33pm
Billsmith: Just to be clear, Pope Francis is not my pope [I like him and agree with much he's saying]. I'm not a Catholic; I'm a Lutheran. As you know [you being a former Lutheran] those of us who call ourselves Lutheran broke away from the Roman church. The wheels of which started in 1517 when Martin Luther posted his 95 Thesis which started the Protestant Reformation.

Frankly I agree with Pope Francis that THE CHURCH, and I mean not just Roman Catholic, is way too focused on abortion and gay/lesbian marriage. We all are sinners, and can only be saved by God's Grace and Love. I'm not to judge you; and you aren't to judge me. THAT's God's job. THE CHURCH, including the Roman church, needs to be focused more on the Love of Christ and what Christ taught and did. There's where you'll find the Good News of the Gospel.

There will be church communities where they're willing to marry LGBT folks - that's between them and God - I'm not judging them, but on the other hand, I don't want you or them judging me and those who's beliefs are not to your liking either. Again all of us will stand before God's throne on judgement day and answer for how we lived our lives. So believe what you do, and I'll believe what I do. Be at Peace.

billsmith
Fri, Sep 20, 2013 3:34pm
MikeFromDelaware: It's 95 Theses. "Thesis" is singular. And I thought you said you'd changed denominations again.

And the causes of the Reformation are more complex and a good deal older than Luther's criticism of the sale of indulgences (the only issue dealt with in the so-called "theses").

Did you ever find out if non-believers can get to heaven?

I bet those couples who held back some of their cash from the communal church were poisoned. A common practice back then. Religious leaders excel at justifying their actions and presenting them as something god did.


Mike from Delaware
Fri, Sep 20, 2013 4:24pm
Billsmith: No I'm still a Lutheran.

The spell check on my computer at work doesn't work with Allan's Blog for some reason, and as I'm typing quickly only wanting to take a moment to make a response during a break or lunch, typos are a given, especially as the tiny window provided to type in is difficult to see well.

I agree there were other issues involved, but Luther and his confrontation with the Pope at the Diet of Worms seem to be what got the ball really rolling. I'm no expert, as I'm still learning about Lutheranism, and Luther.

I can only base my answer on what I've read in the Bible and what the many various pastor's I know from many denominations teach and that is, Christ is the ONLY pathway to heaven. I know you don't believe in the Bible, so we don't have a common ground to discuss this. You don't believe the Word, I do. Let's face it, neither of us will know that answer until we pass on from this life. If you're correct, we become food for the worms, if you don't believe at all in an after life [not totally sure what you believe]. If I'm correct then Christ is the only way to eternal life with God.

I guess time will tell.

kavips
Fri, Sep 20, 2013 6:40pm
Mike of D... Contradiction.. If Christ is the ONLY way to heaven then Abraham, Issac, Jacob, Moses, Aaron, David, Solomon, Elijah to name a few, could not then go to heaven.... by the quirk of when they died.

Yet, we know through the transfiguration that both Moses and Elijah exist in spirit form, and can come back at a moments notice... so in heaven they are.

It appears your belief that only through Jesus is the path, is a gross misinterpretation of his statement "I am the way"... Perhaps it should be translated, as "live like I do and you will be in my master's house". Meaning a Buddhist could live like he does and be in Heaven too...

That would make the most sense.

billsmith
Fri, Sep 20, 2013 7:08pm
MikeFromDelaware: I see you're still calling the Lutheran communion service a "mass." Sounds like when you think your time has come, you'll want a priest.
The Pope did not attend the Diet of Worms. However, in my Lutheran elementary school, we all giggled whenever the teacher mentioned it.
Ever heard of Jan Hus? Maybe you should check out (no pun intended) a Moravian Church service some time.
Me correct? As I have tried to explain, I don't do belief. But you seem to think there are only two alternatives here: The exclusively Christian heaven or worm food (becoming the diet of worms). To be precise, even if you are "correct," your remains still become worm food - unless you opt for cremation. But there are other alternatives: Everybody gets to heaven one way or another (Unitarian-Universalism). Good people get to heaven (Apparently Catholics, and most Jews). Muslims get to heaven; so do Christians and Jews but they get second class accommodations (Islam). You get to populate and be god of your own planet (Mormonism). And - the choice of the majority of humanity and my personal preference: Reincarnation. But so what if you end up worm food? You won't know a thing. It's a better and more humane alternative than your sadistic god imposing eternal torment on most of humanity.
But I guess you never bothered to find out the basis for the Catholic teaching that all good people can get to heaven. The preachers you listen to apparently think claiming a monopoly on salvation is a more effective recruiting pitch. Heck, my LCMS pastor used to make it seem doubtful that even other Lutherans get to heaven. They were clear idol-worshiping papists would not make it.

Mike from Delaware
Fri, Sep 20, 2013 8:49pm
Kavips: Moses & the rest were part of the old covenant, BC (literally before Christ). So they made it to heaven , as you noted from the transfiguration passage in the New Testament (covenant).

Billsmith: I've asked every Lutheran pastor I know (both ELCA & LCMS) & none of them have a problem with the communion service being called the Lutheran Mass. One of the LCMS pastors did say that back in the day the LCMS wouldn't have accepted that phrase & probably some LCMS churches in very rural areas in the mid west might still have a problem (which obviously is what you experienced as a child attending a LCMS Lutheran church , thus why it bothers you, even now many years later.

Watch a Catholic Mass sometime on EWTN & you'll see very little difference between their mass & the ones I've experienced for the past 5 1/2 years when I first discovered Lutheranism. Now maybe these masses are different than what you had as a kid, you'd have to check out a Lutheran service now & compare from what you remember as a kid.

billsmith
Sat, Sep 21, 2013 5:01am
MikeFromDelaware: So, are you saying the so-called "old covenant" is no longer in effect and no longer applies?

Do you still cross yourself and genuflect, too?

I notice that when some topic comes up, you run and ask some pastor for the answer. You don't think for yourself. You don't do your own homework. You don't figure out things yourself. I bet you were one of those kids constantly asking the teacher dumb questions. I always hated you dumb kids who kept wasting my time and holding everybody back. I hate you all even more since you grew up to be tea dummies, Jesus jumpers trying to legislate your own sick morality, and dittoheads.


Mike from Delaware
Sat, Sep 21, 2013 9:48am
Billsmith: You said this, "I see you're still calling the Lutheran communion service a "mass."

So I provided you the information to answer why I still call the Lutheran communion service a mass. Unlike you, I don't believe I know it all and have no problem asking someone, who knows more about a subject than I for information.

In this case I've taken the time and talked to four Lutheran pastors, 2 are ELCA and 2 are LCMS, because I wanted to learn more; and I was interested in being able to provide you with an intelligent answer. I took your comment months ago about the Lutheran Mass seriously and sought out the answer and the history. In other words, I respected you and your question/comment seriously enough to try to find the information back when you first said it.

I've visited both ELCA and LCMS websites, nothing there to answer your question [at least that I found]. In case you haven't noticed, this area is NOT a strong Lutheran area [more Catholic, United Methodist, and Evangelical] and as a result guess what, the book stores here do not have ANY books about Lutheranism other than the history of Martin Luther and the start of the Protestant Reformation. Same for the public libraries.

So that left me with asking these Lutheran pastors. Rather than you simply saying thank you, I now understand why you call it a Lutheran Mass I still think it shouldn't be called that [or something like that], instead you insult and bash me.

It is obvious you've not been in a Lutheran Church ELCA or LCMS in many years, because you'd get a serious wake-up call. All the Lutheran Churches in the Wilmington Metro Area I've visited in the past 5 1/2 years [4 ELCA and 2 LCMS] all do make the sign of the cross during the service, and bow before the altar [not genuflect]. Some have a crucifix somewhere in their church, none have the large one on the altar as a Crucifix though.

Watch Pastor Ken Klaus, on LCMS Mens Network online in the video series he does on the Scary things about the Book of Revelation [it's very interesting], you'll notice he's got a Crucifix around his neck rather than just a plain cross. He has been the voice of the Lutheran Hour for many years, so he's about as mainstream LCMS as you can get. Man he's got a great "radio voice".

You'll be happy to know though, that the LCMS when saying the Apostles Creed still say: "We believe in the Holy Christian Church", whereas the ELCA and every other Christian church of any denomination that says the Apostles Creed [Baptist, Assembly of God, and Evangelical-type churches do not] instead use the original words, "we believe in the Holy catholic church". These churches, other than the Roman Catholic, use a lower case "c" for the word 'catholic' which, as you know, means universal. The capital "C" obviously means the Roman Catholic church. The churches that use the lower case "c" do make a notation on the page so those who don't realize the difference of the lower case "c" makes won't freak out thinking they, as good Protestants, are now endorsing the Roman church.

If the Catholic Church is now saying all good people get to heaven [without Christ], then just as the LCMS church has changed since you were a kid, apparently so has the Catholic church. We were taught that only Catholics were going to heaven. We were forbidden as it was considered to be a sin to even go visit a Protestant church [which I broke each time I spent the night at one of my Methodist's friends house on a Saturday night]. My parents were not the best Catholics and didn't sweat any of that.

The Catholic church at that time considered it a sin to miss mass. That always bothered me as I liked going to worship. I've thought for years, you shouldn't have to make it an obligation and call it a sin, because people should want to go [they called it a holy obligation to attend mass each Sunday]. If they don't, then there's a problem with that person's walk with Christ. Maybe they don't have a walk and are going so they won't have to confess that to the priest, or are going out of guilt, that's not worship.

So NO Billsmith, I'm not a Catholic, and am not interested in becoming a Catholic again; I've learned too much via experience, study of God's Word, study of history, reading many books over the years, etc. I am a Lutheran Christian [somewhere between an ELCA and LCMS - I don't agree with either totally, but like both and find that Christ is there in both]. Their "Lutheran Mass" speaks to my spirit and is a wonderful way to receive the grace and love of Christ each week in Holy Communion.

I have no problem with taking the good stuff in a Catholic Mass and using it in a Lutheran Mass [the high-church type worship, the sacredness of that time in God's presence, not so casual that you think you're at a rock concert [the Evangelical church of today], the sign of the cross reminds us of our Baptism, the crucifix reminds us of what Jesus suffered to pay the price for our sins. That isn't Catholic, but Christian. We Lutherans don't say the sacrifice of the mass, but instead call it the celebration, because Christ made that sacrifice over 2000 years ago, he doesn't redo it each week at church. The Lutheran Mass is a celebration of what Christ did and has accomplished for us. THAT's a major difference between the Catholic Mass and the Lutheran Mass.]

I don't have all the answers, as my faith and walk with Christ is a journey, or a work in progress. My views have changed over the years as I've grown and learned more, and have matured in that journey. So you may need to ask some of your questions to someone else, who's far more educated than me. I'm a simple disciple of Jesus, who's glad he's allowed me to be with him. I have a simple faith, and frankly don't worry about all the details, I leave that up to him. After all he's the one who paid the price, I've done nothing other than accept his hand of fellowship and love. Be at Peace.

mrpizza
Sat, Sep 21, 2013 12:27pm
Wow! And I thought religious discussions were supposed to be off limits here.

Mike from Delaware
Sat, Sep 21, 2013 3:05pm
Mrpizza: I had posted about the American Liberty League of the 1930's. You started this thread down the religious path on Thursday when you quoted scripture in one post and mentioned Jesus in another. So your question is?

It wasn't my intent for a large religious discussion [I had used a secular political issue], but it seems hard to avoid sometimes. However, it has migrated over the Weekend free for all thread.


billsmith
Sat, Sep 21, 2013 4:00pm
Nobody wants to talk about religion unless it's their own religion.

Mike from Delaware
Sat, Sep 21, 2013 7:41pm
Billsmith: I agree. People's beliefs are really digging down deep into each individual. Their bedrock. Even your unbelief is belief, because it is who you are today and it shapes your views, just as my belief in Christ & Lutheranism today helps explain who I am & shapes my view; same with Mrpizza's belief in Christ & his Evangelical/ Prosperity Gospel oriented church say about who Mrpizza is today.

It also makes it very personal & I guess why folks have a difficult time discussing it. You know the thing about avoiding talking about religion & politics.

billsmith
Sat, Sep 21, 2013 8:54pm
MikeFromDelaware: I always heard it was sex, religion and politics. Which is about 99 and 44/100ths of this blog.

Mike from Delaware
Sat, Sep 21, 2013 10:53pm
Billsmith: Doesn't leave much left to discuss, other than the weather & sports.

Hey how about them Eagles, man do they stink. They sure got embarrassed losing to their old coach Andy Reid & his Washington Redskins this past Thursday night. Wonder how long Michael Vick will last before he gets hurt and be out for the rest of the season?

Sure hope we don't get a lot snow this winter.

I can't lie, but I enjoy discussing politics & religion more, also Science too. I guess that's why I've never been good at small talk. I find it boring.

mrpizza
Sun, Sep 22, 2013 2:41am
I don't have any trouble discussing it. You can't separate religion and politics, because all politics are based on the religion or lack thereof of the politicians making the laws.

I think you know by now that I'm totally honest about what I think and don't care what anybody else thinks about it.

billsmith
Sun, Sep 22, 2013 12:38pm
And all the discussion of gays and abortion qualifies as sex.
In the real world, the most common topic is gossip. Also the most common topic in the news media.

mrpizza
Sun, Sep 22, 2013 2:42pm
Hey Bill, you hit that one right on the head.

This also reminds me of Bill Clinton's statement that "oral sex is not sex". Wow, what a defense! If I ever need a defense lawyer, ole Bill Clinton is the one I'd think of first.

billsmith
Sun, Sep 22, 2013 3:03pm
Too bad, Pizza. He was disbarred for that one.

Mike from Delaware
Sun, Sep 22, 2013 5:15pm
Billsmith: You make excellent points; gossip does sell. Those syndicated Hollywood tell all shows that usually around 7pm on TV apparently get great ratings & we can't forget about those supermarket tabloids that seem to be making money in this world where so many real newspapers are struggling to stay afloat.

I also agree that most folks don't discuss gay/lesbian issues or abortion. I believe most folks have an opinion on both, but those two topics are like religion & politics, usually get folks fired up which isn't a great thing at a party, but does work well on a talk show where you are looking to get folks worked enough to call in to voice their opinion..

billsmith
Sun, Sep 22, 2013 6:33pm
MikeFromDelaware: You might find the book "Atheist in the Foxhole." The title comes from a non-believer (liberal) working for Fox News. While they say "fair and balanced" in external promotions, backstage - among themselves in editorial discussions - they talk about "stirring up the crazies." That's their formula for ratings.

Sociologist Gaye Tuchman, who specializes in studying occupations and professions, wrote in her classic study of the news business: Anyone can do the journalists' job. After all, everybody gossips.

Mike from Delaware
Sun, Sep 22, 2013 8:20pm
Billsmith: sounds like an interesting book. I'll have to see if the library or a bookstore has it. Do you know the author's name?

billsmith
Mon, Sep 23, 2013 11:40am
Title: An atheist in the FOXhole : a liberal's eight-year odyssey inside the heart of the right-wing media
Author: Muto, Joe.
http://dlc.lib.de.us/client/default/search/detailnonmodal/ent:$002f$002fSD_ILS$002f1651$002fSD_ILS:1651114/one?qu=An+atheist+in+the+FOXhole+%3A+a+liberal%27s+eight-year+odyssey+inside+the+heart+of+the+right-wing+media&lm=BOOKS&rt=TITLE|||Title|||false

Mike from Delaware
Mon, Sep 23, 2013 1:08pm
Billsmith: Thanks, I just called the library and reserved it. Ought to be an interesting read.


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