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August 7th, 2009
12:11 PM ET
soundoff (41 Responses)
  1. Brian

    I don't what the revelation is about regarding Mr. Ridge's comment about the terror alert being used for political purposes. It's a well known fact that fear is how you control the American people..With people like glen beck, rush limbaugh, some replublicans and large corporations constantly putting fear out there to get there way. The same is being used for healthcare , i can believe that the American people actually believe some of the nonsense that i hear on t.v. But fear,propaganda and misinformation have worked well for these people in the past so why stop..

    August 20, 2009 at 10:26 pm |
  2. Tony Thornton

    The peolpe that are involved in disrupting these town hall meetings say that they are AMERICANS. However they are prepared to divide the country @ any cost to meet there personal agenda. i wonder if they view/relate there behaviour as patriotic.

    August 7, 2009 at 9:57 pm |
  3. Miriam, NY

    Hi Anderson,

    Yes, I did hear that government and a lot of other countries are involved in some privacy issues for sexual stimulant. I also think there is some technical invention , I am not a big fan of fast-gadgets and hi-fi stuff. I am not sure whether you have experienced some kind-of freeze in the brain and some bug like creepy feeling. I believe there are some high gadgets to find peoples wishes and dreams and converting it to reality. It really doesnt work that way – sometimes you just say for the sake of saying 'I wish...'...that is all !!! But off late, there is an accute love to convert everything to action which you enter into a robotic world. I am not a keen participant and just trying to avoid being myself, but on a overall basis it really doesnt seem a big success though I am in IT field. But, anyway it was a good finding !!!! Good job !!! But yes, there is an overall feeling there is privacy being deprived for bringing the world together !!! I hope everything works well between all generations of people !!! I am not a fan of it, so these things dont matter to me – I am not a person who goes even to best-buy much, so I am not able to appreciate it much ....

    August 7, 2009 at 9:43 pm |
  4. Anonymous

    The Venom Carrier
    The venom carrier comes in different shapes now
    No longer in the shape of the snake, the Klan
    It now walks and talks, and is courteous…..to some
    To others who are different from it
    It opens its inter mouth and hisses
    It disguises the hiss now as idle chatter
    But listen……slowly you will hear, hate, hostility
    Do you look like it but with different attitudes?
    Then you are hated as well
    Fear not if bitten
    The stings have weaken from past years
    Its stings will fade soon

    The venom carrier is oblivious to anything around it
    As it thinks it’s better than……
    It must be better than……or it dies
    And it will die
    For the greater world is protected by something supremely stronger that it
    But its actions have cursed the future carriers of venom
    Pity the venom carrier
    Pity the venom carrier’s child
    For it will not know the curse that befalls it

    (original words to this original poem must not be altered)

    August 7, 2009 at 9:39 pm |
  5. Ronda

    July 21, 2009 – Obama hosted a conference call with leftist bloggers urging them to pressure Congress to pass his health plan as soon as possible. During the call, a blogger from Maine said he kept running into an Investors Business Daily article that claimed Section 102 of the House health legislation would outlaw private insurance. He asked: “Is this true? Will people be able to keep their insurance and will insurers be able to write new policies even though H.R. 3200 is passed?” President Obama replied: “YOU KNOW, I HAVE TO SAY THAT I AM NOT FAMILARY WITH THE PROVISION YOU ARE TALKING ABOUT."

    So this is ok with you Obama Cult Members? The man states on July 21, 2009 only 17 days ago yes, ONLY 17 DAYS AGO., THAT HE WASN'T FAMILAR WITH THE PROVISION OF THE BILL THE LEFTIST BLOGGER WAS TALKING ABOUT and you don't have a problem with it?

    August 7, 2009 at 9:39 pm |
  6. mario

    As Jack said once: it's ugly down there

    August 7, 2009 at 9:35 pm |
  7. Mike White

    When “the common good” of a society is regarded as something apart from and superior to the individual good of its members, it means that the good of some men takes precedence over the good of others, with those others consigned to the status of sacrificial animals. It is tacitly assumed, in such cases, that “the common good” means “the good of the majority” as against the minority or the individual. Observe the significant fact that that assumption is tacit: even the most collectivized mentalities seem to sense the impossibility of justifying it morally. But “the good of the majority,” too, is only a pretense and a delusion: since, in fact, the violation of an individual’s rights means the abrogation of all rights, it delivers the helpless majority into the power of any gang that proclaims itself to be “the voice of society” and proceeds to rule by means of physical force, until deposed by another gang employing the same means.

    Ayn Rand

    Why is someone who can't afford healthcare more inportant than me?

    August 7, 2009 at 9:33 pm |
  8. samanta

    this sad to see i cant belive that ppl are so dum that they feel they can get things done like this and why are they not working are they living on food stamp and that my tax go to them in way i would like to see them remove medicare and all this socials things they get bec as 35 years old i am tieard off this old ppl that are eating my tax and are dum let them get what they want give them small gov and no money from the fed will see how long they make it, all this ppl from the south and north west they get money from the blue state every year and we need to listen to them i say give them what they want.

    August 7, 2009 at 9:24 pm |
  9. Tim Cullen

    Good Old CNN,
    So CNN–or Mr Cooper i once again love how your "Liberal" news agency are ignoring the racist attack on a Black Male at a Health Bill meeting in Mo.
    Is it just because this black man is a conservative that his attack and being called the "N" word by one of his attckers is not worthy of being reported by your News agency.
    Is this the America we are becoming–when News is "Filtered" by what the News exec's political feelings are?It is disgusting...very sad.I wonder why we haven't heard from Jessie Jackson-or how about our first black President?I guess if you are not for the "Government" in power then you will be attacked or ignored.
    Much of America is angry at this Democratic push to shove down our throats a Heatlh Bill that we do not want!

    August 7, 2009 at 9:15 pm |
  10. lampe

    Why is it okay for groups like ACORN, of which Obama was part of, to protest with signs and yelling and screaming, but the minute it is someone else they are NAZIS, Parts of a MOB or worse? No matter what any of you think, this is not going to go Free, or Cheap. Somewhere along the line someone is going to have to pay for this. I believe we need some kind of HealthCare Reform, but not at the hands of the GOVERNMENT.

    August 7, 2009 at 8:02 pm |
  11. Rosie

    Thank God for a President, who understands the frustrations of the poor and needy; for only a President who has experienced the lifestyle of the poor and needy, would understand how necesary it is for one to vent his/her frustrations, even if they are to accuse and criticize, rather than to support and encourage.

    Which is why he is always so calm, in his speech; he understands how one might behave when they are hurting or don't know where their next meal is coming from.

    But there are those who do not have this understanding, and in my opinion, these are they who are behind the many disruptions at the various town hall meeting. These are they who are using these poor souls, for their own personal gain; for people are the most vulnerable when they are afraid, or faced with a sudden change for the worst, in their financial affairs.

    But I would also like to encourage those of you who are hurting, who are afraid, and who want to see a healthcare reform bill; Let not your heart be troubled, The President's healthcare reform bill will go through, and all will be well; for God will put it through for him. So wait, and watch God show up and show out when Congress recess is over

    I told you he would become the next President of the United States, and now I tell you that his healthcare reform bill will pass through both, the House and the Senate; for all of their hearts are in God's hand, and as the river, he can turn them whethersoever he will.

    As for me, I thank God for a President who can relate to my needs and understand my frustrations.
    Mr.President, I am so glad you were born!!!

    August 7, 2009 at 7:44 pm |
  12. Mari

    It is tragic that there is SO much FEAR in some people! SO sad!

    President Obama IS listening, he is listening to the millions who do not have healthcare, who are denied healthcare because of pre-existing conditions!

    What's tragic is that many of the protestors are people who consider themselves ...... Christians AND pro-life but.... will deny their neigbors healthcare!

    We ALREADY have Government run healthcare in Congress, through the V.A. system and through Medicare & Medicaid!

    How SAD that Americans can not have a civil discussion! The SAME people who are protesting-angry, and sadly, hatefilled, are the same people who called us, Bush Critics, Anti-American & Un-Patriotic!

    August 7, 2009 at 7:33 pm |
  13. Beth, Atlanta

    Anyone else notice that a large number of those protesting healthcare reform at these townhalls appear to be over the age of 65?

    Government run and taxpayer supported healthcare for those over 65 is nothing new. Why haven’t they protested in years past? Are these people in favor of getting their health insurance in the free market, eliminating Medicare? Or are they just opposed to the rest of us being assured of continuing and affordable health care??

    I personally think that it is shameful that taxpayers subsidize the healthcare of wealthy seniors, while children (who aren’t legally allowed to work or to enter into a healthcare insurance contract!!), go without healthcare unless their parents make enough money and are responsible enough to buy them healthcare.

    I don't like the House bill but I also think that before a bill is signed it will be made significantly different . I am thrilled that we all now agree reform is needed. That didn't used to be the case. I don’t think it is time yet to judge the effort . I would prefer that 'concerned citizens' engage in constructive debate, not screaming one-liners repeating what is said on entertainment talk radio.

    August 7, 2009 at 6:54 pm |
  14. mariellen

    No one states we do not need reform. But why throw out what is good about our health system and replace it with policies we do not know will work. Of course this means FIRST reading the entire bill. to make good decisions. And why has not the senate stated they will use the same HC as they want us to have .Think about it. Does not take a genius to figure this out. Do insurance companies need to be regulated YES but do not leave it with our government officials who are just as bad or worse. WAKE up people because you just may wake up some day and think you had a night mare. We need to slow down read the BILL and than decide.

    August 7, 2009 at 6:41 pm |
  15. Dan

    RLWellman must be one of the lucky ones who has health insurance and has not been injured at work or had a catasrophic health issue that took him out of work. Once you lose your job due to health issues, then you lose your insurance and have to go GOV anyway. Who pays for that? WE ALL DO....DUH So if we want to fix the problem, health insurance for all and PREVENTIVE CARE... WAKE UP AMERICA!!!!!

    August 7, 2009 at 6:05 pm |
  16. mike from sarasota fl.

    Anderson i wonder if prof. gates was conducting himself as disorderly as these fake protesters. you might think the GOP would speak out against them.NO their going to defend them.The reason why is because they have planned to come back after recess is over and be like their voters are against health care reform and use these fake protesters as an excuse not to vote for reform.people need to hold them accoutable. Its quite obvious their being paid to show up.at each one of these town halls their saying the same talking points.I cant believe republicans think the american people are nieve to see whats going on here. you report ,we decide. I understand but you cant give these people an ounce of credibility.the insurance companies and the republican party are trying to defraud the american people.

    August 7, 2009 at 5:59 pm |
  17. Medicare Patient

    I think we need to Reform the HEALTH CARE in AMERICA–along the lines of SAFEWAY CORP. REFORM done in 2005,where employees were encouraged to have a physical and reduce weight by 20lbs. and also try to quit smoking.The result was these incentives/rewards worked and now Safeway health care costs are down sharply.OBESITY LEVELS ARE 70% of national average.
    IF WE DO IT like Safeway or Mayo Clinic.,where ER use is shifted to primary care doctors serving 24 hours/7 days care–then costs can be reduced and savings used to subsidize UNINSURED.
    PEOPLE have to be responsible for their health.
    Govt. has driven primary care to ER–at night/weekends.
    In 60's/70's–your PC doctor took care of you.But then we started cutting back PC doctors fees.So they decided to let patients go to ER where costs are 5 times higher.
    Now doctors prefer being ER doctors making more and working only 40 hours/week.
    People are becoming OBESE–driving up costs and Public Health has failed in its mission.Doctors have given up–as the Paperwork takes 10 minutes,exam takes 10 minutes–NO TIME LEFT FOR COUNSELLING on OBESITY .
    The current bill drives costs by 1 Trillion$–WHO pays–the SENIORS pay,rest of people will pay eventually as QUALITY goes down.
    Without addressing OBESITY epidemic and factors that motivate young to avoid Primary Care and become ER doctors profession–THE HEALTH CARE COSTS WILL RISE.

    August 7, 2009 at 5:36 pm |
  18. RLWellman

    It's time the President starts listening to his countrymen instead of saying, "It's my way or the highway"!

    August 7, 2009 at 5:34 pm |
  19. Als

    Something needs to be done about healthcare. The swine flu and other diseases are right around the corner to cause an epidemic if people have no health insurance. 44 million people and more each day have no coverage at all. The economy is not getting better regardless . People are still losing jobs and will continue to do so. The President and Congress have nothing to worry about in this situation their covered for life. Americans lose in this situation because they are losing their jobs daily. Congress have salaries close to millions of dollars they will not be hurting at all.

    August 7, 2009 at 4:56 pm |
  20. dave

    I feel this country is like a person. It is less likely to fall ill to disease when healthy than that of a weakened person.
    One out of five diseases are that of autoimmunity diseases. They are where a person’s autoimmune system will attack a person’s own healthy cells. They include arthritis, Muscular dystrophy and ALS, for example.
    Then there are other diseases, like cancer, viruses, and bacteria, than can run ramped within a person if weakened. If the person is weakened enough, these diseases may kill a person.
    I feel what is going on with our health care debate, is like an autoimmune attack with oneself. Some people look at our President and the Democrats as Nazis. Meanwhile, there are diseases, like al qaeda, Mexican drug lords and the Russians off our eastern cost. If we continue this internal “autoimmune” attack within this country, we are weakening ourselves for all others to see…
    If we love this country, we need to get back to healthy debates in order to keep this nation strong and diseases at bay...

    August 7, 2009 at 4:07 pm |
  21. Lisa

    The people who oppose the health care plan are driven by pure greed! Give me a break; are you that selfish and greedy that you can not give out of your own pocket to help another person get health care? My Christian beliefs are moral ones (Do republicans pride themselves on morality?) and if I am willing to give out of my pocket to help save someone else’s life than I believe the rest of America can to! I have voted republican my entire life and for the first time I voted democratic this past election and thank GOD Obama can COWBOY UP (my Texan coming out) and do something about all of the selfish, greedy, immoral and most of all hypocritical people that have reared their ugly faces for so long in our great country!

    August 7, 2009 at 3:58 pm |
  22. Denice

    I personaly give the Presdent a A+ becuse we got the grant money and if we did not get the money we would have to pay 1967.67 and now we have new loan @2% foe 5 years 1035.67 that includ our property tax. Thank you
    Denice rember I said a A+!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!1

    August 7, 2009 at 3:25 pm |
  23. Denice

    I personal give Presdent A+ Because we got a New loan from the grant
    @ 2% over half the the amount we would have to pay $1967.35

    August 7, 2009 at 3:21 pm |
  24. Dan

    I suspect the protesters ALREADY HAVE HEALTH INSURANCE. What they don't talk about, are all the people who were injured at work, had to pay thousands for COBRA until they are wiped out, and in the end, left with no job and no health inurance. GREAT SYSTEM FOLKS, I can tell you really care about your fellow man.

    August 7, 2009 at 3:06 pm |
  25. Jo Ann, Ohio

    It is irresponsible for the Democrats and CNN to make charges that the Republicans or some anti-Obama group are behind these town hall protests without producing some proof. Just because they are making these accusations doesn't make it so.

    CNN always seems to discredit any opposition against Obama's policies, but they fail to criticize things like the New Black Panther intimidation at the voting booths and the fact that the Obama administration dropped the charges against these thugs. Now that was a dangerous mob!

    August 7, 2009 at 2:58 pm |
  26. Eric

    They're bullies. Ignorant bullies. They have no desire to learn anything. Only to shout down any agreement or attempt at civil discourse. They have a right to their say. Dissent shouldn't be stifled but neither should assent. Which is what these people are doing. The majority of Americans know they're getting screwed by private insurers. Let them decide if they want to buy into the public option. You don't want it. Don't buy it. It's complete idiocy to believe that this administration wants to kill old people. I am ashamed that so many americans are so ignorant as to believe such nonsense. The only people allowing people to die are private insurers who would rather make a buck by denying a claim than save a life. If ignorant republicans want to defend their practices, fine. Me? I'll take affordable health care for all.

    August 7, 2009 at 2:50 pm |
  27. Anita

    I like the Idea of TOWN HALL MEETINGS over the telephone where Dems have control over the mute or disconnect button this way people can get answer to real question with less drama to be advertised.

    Republicans are ANGRY AND AFRAID OF CHANGE and that is what Obama is really dealing with most of the people at the town halls don’t even know what Medical or Medicare is.

    Also, Dems need to cover the TV with the truth. News, specials reports highlighting only the advantages of health care, more commercial ads of the advantage of public options maybe call it medical plan 2 or something people can identify with.

    Also, I like to think Rachel and Keith for their shows which exposes the truth without them a lot mess would go unnoticed. I believe this is why the republican wanted to postpone the health care is so they can push this agenda of disruptions.

    August 7, 2009 at 2:21 pm |
  28. c,ca

    Where is this fantasy land that these protestors live in? Where do people have a personal relationship with a doctor? Where do you walk into an emergency room and be treated without having to wait for hours? I'm in my fifties, with insurance, and I have NEVER experienced any of these things.

    My most recent trip to the doctor ended with me storming out – furious! We changed insurance from mine to my husband's (it was cheaper). I called to make an appointment to get set up with a new doctor, because if you wait until you are sick – you cannot just call a doctor and go see them.

    I had to wait three weeks for an appointment. I took time off from work to go to the appointment where I paid my co-payment, filled out paperwork for 15 minutes, then waited.......... and waited............ and waited.

    After 45 minutes passed, I told the secretary that I would have to re-schedule – I had to get back to work. The nurse "suddenly" appeared and took me in. She asked me – "Why are you here? What's the problem?" I told her that I needed to have a physical and get established with a doctor. She then informed me that they don't do anything on the first visit – that I would have to come back (pay a second co-pay) and go through this same routine again. I asked for my money back – and left.

    When my kids were small we had Kaiser HMO. Seeing a pediatrician meant waiting forever with a sick, crying child surrounded by other sick, crying children. Once you were in with the doctor, you were allowed about one-minute to state your case as to why you were there. Of course you were expected to have diagnosed the problem yourself, first:, "She has an ear infection – she's allergic to this – I need a prescription for that", then GET OUT.

    I have also spent many hours sitting in ERs or urgent care facilities, waiting and waiting and waiting..... being forgotten.... then waiting some more.

    The threat that "it'll be like Canada – you'll have to wait for treatment" seems a bit ridiculous to me. How could it get any worse?

    August 7, 2009 at 2:14 pm |
  29. Beverly

    it all comes down to money. not how much it will cost, but how much the insurance companies and politicans can put in THEIR pockets.

    August 7, 2009 at 2:03 pm |
  30. Deborah/Kansas City

    Paid mobs intended only to frighten people and disrupt these meetings are a disgrace. Everyone who shows up and demands that no Public Not for Profit Option be availalbe, should be made to give up their Medicare. That would save us a bunch of money right there. Let them go out and buy private insurace and see how they like that.

    I'm serious have a voluntary revocation of Medicare Coverage for all those people to sign.

    August 7, 2009 at 1:51 pm |
  31. Kristen, MD

    Those folks look ridiculous and nobody is talking about their opposing views but rather their childish behavior.

    What annoys me is people can't put aside the left/right wing BS and work to get health care reform done that benefits us all. The congressional leaders and their constituents are both guilty of this. We all want healthcare reform behaving like this wont get it accomplished.

    August 7, 2009 at 1:43 pm |
  32. Joe G. (Illinois)

    People make judgments calls like speed shooting off the side of their hip and attribute all such disputes exclusively to the Republican Conservatives.. But deep down America knows that it’s the Pathological Insensitive Abortionist and Immoral Liberal Progressive supporters of Obama that would … and… for money. I think Obama needs to get a grip on reality and size up his supporters; “Get on the plate per say.” Go on Ophra; Give out vouchers for free Lamborghini’s. Just anything to keep his supporters tight, quiet and close to him as he promised he would during the primaries.

    August 7, 2009 at 1:41 pm |
  33. Rosie

    How sad, that in the 21st century, we have not yet rose above the mindset and the fear tactic of the 19th and 20th century.
    Will we ever learn how to sit down and reason together, or is this all we, the people, will ever be able to expect from this great country? Is this America's leadership audition, now on display?

    Why don't we just, for once, be honest with ourselves and with one another, and just admit that this disruption is not about healthcare, nor healthcare cost, but about the Black man, who now sits in the seat of power. Which is looked upon as being a threat to those who have become addicted to power, and to those who are used to one people being in power,and therefore sees this country as belonging to only one group of people. And that this is the true hidden cause of wanting to see this President fail.
    How we must look to the rest of the world, for I am sure they, too, are wise enough to know the true cause of these disruptions.
    May God have mercy upon our souls.
    This may not be left upon the blog, for truth is something we do not want to hear, nor discuss.

    August 7, 2009 at 1:40 pm |
  34. Mike in NYC

    Politics is a contact sport.

    I'm not going to sing the praises of the GOP, but bullying the opposition has always been part and parcel of leftist political programs.

    It ticks them off when those on the wrong side of history get "uppity."

    August 7, 2009 at 1:26 pm |
  35. J Thomas

    Let there be a Town Hall Meeting so people can be informed. Keep your rude and ignorant posturing at home or have your own get together. You do not have a right to deny me my right to hear and educate myself on what my decision on this matter should be.

    August 7, 2009 at 1:16 pm |
  36. Mike Faulkner

    One of the questions on CNN this afternoon asked viewers to offer comments they "would share" with their representatives given the chance. Last week I did just that with my Representative Congresswoman Foxx (R-NC-5th District) while visiting Washington D.C. with my family. I was pleased, that contrary to what many special interest groups have tried to show as "closed minded and partisan" was actually a desire to on her part to protect constituents from “inefficient government”; a reasonable concern.

    I found my Congresswoman to be interested and genuinely concerned. I did encourage her to take a page from President Obama’s playbook and visit institutions like the Cleveland Clinic. Our President is right when he says more medical facilities should operate like the Cleveland Clinic. I have been a Cardiac patient at Cleveland for over two years and the care they provide is excellent and reasonably priced!!! They do not duplicate tests (test results are posted on line for both patient and physicians to view) and they have a sincere interest in the patient’s physical and emotional well being; critical with major medical problems like Heart Disease and Cancer.

    All members of Congress would be wise to visit the Cleveland Clinic prior to voting on any major health Care Reform Bill and ask themselves “why not in my state”? Thanks/M Faulkner

    August 7, 2009 at 1:11 pm |
  37. joe miller

    CNN reported between $ 70 and $ 200 Billion in healthcare fraud today on Betty's show.

    Here's a novel thought. Kill ther bill (s) and focus on reclaiming that money first!

    We can probably save another billion by putting the Congress on whatever health bill they pass for us. The can still fly first class on all those new airplanes they just bought for congresional travel.

    August 7, 2009 at 1:05 pm |
  38. Cindy

    Let the President, his family and all Congressman, Senators ect...have the save proposed care that they want for under privileged Americans who can't afford private insurance. Are the public elected officials willing to give up what they have now, free life time medical care (that Americans all pay for them with our taxes) at top medcial facilities, for a system like Canada has? Canadians and people from all over the world come to the U.S. for medical care. What does that say about the so called nationalized health care system? This system has killed off both the old and young by making them wait for needed medical care, is that not nationalized murder?

    August 7, 2009 at 1:02 pm |
  39. Michael C. McHugh

    The insurance companies aren't going to lose anything. They have already gotten what they want most in this legislation–the government mandates that every individual buy health insurance from them. If they can kill off the public option, then people will have no alternative but to buy health insurance from them at whatever prices they care to charge.

    There's no public option in mandatory auto insurance, although there certainly should be, since the insurance companies have been milking that for years. And we have already seen just how well the government regulates banks and insurance companies: it doesn't. They do whatever they please, and no one ever protects the consumers.

    The public suspects that it's about to get the shaft here in some way, that we are being played for suckers, but neither major party is saying much about the real health care "reform" deal. I don't blame them.

    August 7, 2009 at 12:51 pm |
  40. Melissa

    This is childish. They are supposed to be adults but they sure don't act like it.

    August 7, 2009 at 12:37 pm |
  41. Valdene

    This doesn't surprise me, after all, a considerable amount of money is at stake. The insurance companies stand to loose a lot of money as does the politicians they contribute to, then there is the possibility of raising taxes (like that's not going to happen anyway). These outbursts aren't really about health care or what's fair. They are about promoting one agenda over another (anti-abortion vs. pro-choice) and keeping the status quo, because why should you care about someone without health care if you have good coverage. Assuming you don't loose your job or get dropped by your insurance company. What should really concern people is that one group of people are willing to bully another so that you don't get answers to make an informed choice one way or the other.

    August 7, 2009 at 12:26 pm |

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