Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Randi Rhodes Newsletter for Tuesday June 22nd 2010

Today General Stanley McChrystal, the top commander in Afghanistan , has been summoned to Washington over remarks about Obama administration and civilian officials that are openly contemptuous. A lot of the comments from McChrystal and his aides seem remarkably catty for military men. They read like excerpts from a new “Sex in the City” movie. The comments appear in an article in the new issue of Rolling Stone. It’s not good when quotes from military commanders sound cattier than quotes in the same magazine from Lady Gaga. When he’s not giving General McChrystal a piece of his mind today, President Obama was giving another piece to executives from the health insurance industry. In a meeting the President warned them not to use the new healthcare law as an excuse for rate increases meant only to increase profits. Consumers who buy individual policies already face an average premium increase of 20 percent this year. It’s getting to be more expensive to be insured than it is to be sick. Part of the reason for the increases is the lack of a public option. There’s no competition in the health insurance market. The only real competition is between the health insurance companies and the people they insure. In 34 states, 75 percent of the insurance market is controlled by five or fewer companies. So not only do we not have a public option… a lot of us don’t have any options at all. Want to know why you don’t hear more about health insurance company consolidation? Because of media consolidation. Want to know why you don’t hear more about media consolidation? You have one guess. If the media says that health insurance companies are becoming virtual monopolies, the health insurance companies can just respond “I know I am, but what are you?” It’s hard for the media to point fingers … when they have so few fingers. And now Comcast wants to swallow up NBC. You should know what that will mean to you… because after it happens, you’ll be less likely to know anything. One way or another, you’re going to stop hearing about media consolidation. Either it stops happening… or they’re going to stop telling you about it. >>> MORE

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