Mayor, Can UB A Good Boy? And Himes On Health

I didn’t see it with my own eyes, but OIB friends who were there report that Mayor Bill Finch clapped from his seat at the reviewing stand when an acknowledgment was offered for the University of Bridgeport float that participated in the St. Patrick’s Day Parade.

What’s the big deal? That’s a big leap for hizzoner who for years has had as bizarre fixation against the Professors World Peace Academy, which took financial control of the university in 1992 and is an offshoot of the Unification Church of Rev. Sun Myung Moon. UB was hemorrhaging. The law school bolted for Quinnipiac and the alternative was closure, and boarded up buildings in the South End. Finch had read a few books about cults to the point he became cultish about them.

Today UB is a major asset to the city, both a brainpower and economic engine that employs hundreds and schools more than 5000 students in engineering, dentistry, health sciences, business, nutrition, martial arts and a bunch of other stuff. And a revitalized sports program.

Finch for decades has frothed at Moon much in the way some spew at organized religion or political organizations that some say control government figures (paging the Bridgeport Democratic Town Committee). The problem with the mayor’s fixation is he’s unjustifiably taking it out on the current and positive state of affairs, and his hand clap to the float may have been a gesture to mend his latest froth at the university.

Last summer the mayor launched into an exhaustive rant about UB being run by a criminal enterprise. It was painful for me, members of the business community, local pols and Mary-Jane Foster, vice president of university relations, and co-founder of the Bridgeport Bluefish, who opened up her home to Finch for fundraisers, supported him through and through whether for state senate or for mayor.

I know a lot of accomplished folks who work there including Foster, George Estrada, public facilities director, who had a similar role for the city, Susan Katz, professor of communications, and a whole bunch more. Every semester I speak to UB students about communications, public relations and how to avoid the trapdoor of self entitlement. They’re great kids. They want to learn. They want to succeed. There’s zero evidence that UB is influenced by Finch’s perception.

Sometimes Finch says stuff and doesn’t realize the pain it causes people, especially now when he’s been mayor for nearly 30 months. And sometimes he doesn’t realize the pain it causes him. Finch tried to reach out to Foster after his gaffe last summer. But the other day he did it again, and now it’s clear their relationship is irreparable.

Here’s the short version of a long story. The mayor, the other day, was asked to speak by a group hosting an event at UB. The mayor not only said no but launched into a froth about that criminal enterprise again and suggested the group host the event at the Jesuit mission Fairfield University. Word got back to Foster and she confronted Finch to confirm.

When I talk to business community folks about Finch they say all the things you think about Bill. He looks good, sounds good. But then they express concern about what he says and how he says it, especially when it comes to UB. A large downtown taxpayer recently told me the thing that bothers him most about Finch is his treatment of UB. And that’s where the tipping point comes in for the mayor both politically and governmentally. If you’re a business that wants to locate in Bridgeport, do you really want to hear the city’s chief executive ranting about UB? If you’re a business looking to leave, does it make it easier to bail out when the mayor trounces UB?

Can you imagine New Haven Mayor John DeStefano calling Yale a criminal enterprise?

Now let’s look at this politically. When you’re popular you can get away with stuff like this. But Finch is looking at a rough primary next year from State Rep. Chris Caruso, the anti-establishment candidate, and perhaps several others.

So when the mayor clapped the other day for the UB float it had to be a hard swallow, and it had to come as a result of aides saying what is the matter with you!!!

From Jim Himes:

New Analysis Confirms Health Care Reform Will Help Families and Businesses in Connecticut’s 4th District

Washington, DC—The health care reform legislation that will come to a vote in the House of Representatives on Sunday will bring significant benefits to Connecticut’s 4th Congressional District. According to a new report using data from the U.S. Census, the Congressional Budget Office, and the Department of Health and Human Services, hundreds of thousands of families and individuals in Fairfield County will see improvements in their coverage or benefit from provisions in the legislation.

“With premiums skyrocketing every year and thousands of Connecticut families without health insurance, we can’t afford to wait any longer,” said Congressman Jim Himes (CT-4). “This long overdue reform will put Americans back in control of their health insurance choices and ensure that everyone has access to high-quality, affordable health care.”

In the 4th District, health care reform will:

· Improve coverage for 463,000 residents with health insurance with new protections against premium hikes, annual and lifetime coverage caps, and exclusions because of preexisting conditions.

· Give tax credits and other assistance to up to 94,000 families and 19,700 small businesses to help them afford coverage.

· Improve Medicare for 99,000 beneficiaries, including beginning to close the donut hole.

· Extend coverage to 31,000 uninsured residents.

· Guarantee that 9,300 residents with pre-existing conditions can obtain coverage.

· Protect 600 families from bankruptcy due to unaffordable health care costs.

· Allow 43,000 young adults to obtain coverage on their parents’ insurance plans.

· Provide millions of dollars in new funding for the 4th District’s community health centers.

· Reduce the cost of uncompensated care for hospitals and other health care providers by $20 million annually.

News release from the mayor:

Mayor Finch, RYASAP, Connecticut Community Boating To Kick off Weeklong Bridgeport Area Beach Cleanup at Seaside Park

Volunteer Effort Funded in Part through BGreen Block by Block Grant

WHAT: Mayor Bill Finch and representatives from RYASAP and Connecticut Community Boating are kicking off a weeklong beach cleanup effort in the Bridgeport area by leading student volunteers in a cleanup of Seaside Park. Last fall, Connecticut Community Boating received a BGreen Block by Block Neighborhood Grant from the City of Bridgeport and RYASAP to develop an eco-classroom at Seaside Park, and the beach cleanup will serve as the first hands-on lesson for the students involved.

WHO: Mayor Bill Finch; Andy Valeri, Parks Manager for the City of Bridgeport; Alisson Wood, Program Manager for RYASAP; Megan Fogarty, Youth Coordinator for RYASAP; Chris German, Executive Director of Connecticut Community Boating; student volunteers from Bassick High School, buildOn, Connecticut Community Boating, Fairfield University, and Harding High School.

WHERE: The Boat Launch at Seaside Park, at the intersection of Cedar Creek Drive and Eames Boulevard, Bridgeport, CT 06604

WHEN: Saturday, March 20 at 9:30 a.m.


The beach cleanup at Seaside Park will take place from 9:30 a.m. to 12 noon.

Subsequent cleanups in the Bridgeport area include:

§ Sunday, March 21 – 10 a.m. – 2 p.m., Long Beach to Pleasure Beach, Stratford

§ Monday, March 22 – 9 a.m. – 12 noon, Ash Creek Nature Preserve, Fairfield

§ Monday, March 22 – 1 – 4 p.m., St Mary’s by The Sea, Bridgeport

§ Tuesday, March 23 – 9 a.m. – 1 p.m., The Little Beach at The Norden Club, Bridgeport

§ Tuesday, March 23 – 1 – 3 p.m., The Boat Ramp at Fayerweather Yacht Club, Bridgeport

§ Wednesday, March 24 – 9 a.m. – 12 noon, Captain’s Cove Seaport, Bridgeport

§ Wednesday, March 24 – 1 – 4 p.m., Wall Street Dock at The Railroad Station, Bridgeport

§ Thursday, March 25 – 9 a.m. – 1 p.m., Seaside Park at The PT Barnum Statue, Bridgeport

§ Friday, March 26 – 9 a.m. – 1 p.m., The Great Meadows Salt Marsh (Rt. 113), Stratford

§ Friday, March 26 – 3 – 5 p.m., Oak Bluff Avenue and Lordship Boulevard, Stratford

§ Saturday, March 27 – 9 a.m. – 12 noon, Newfield Boat Ramp, Bridgeport

For more information about the beach cleanup week, contact Chris German, Executive Director of Connecticut Community Boating at (203) 382 – 3661.

Homework Help

The Bridgeport Public Library Announces A Free Seminar

(No registration required)

Homework Help for Parents

Regain Your Sanity while Improving Your Child’s Self-Esteem

@ 3 Locations

Tips for parents who assist their children with overwhelming homework assignments

Henry Lane, founder of Tutoring Match, offers a stimulating and desperately-needed presentation for parents who face the daily balancing act of assisting their sons and daughters with their studies. Mr. Lane will discuss parental-child dynamics, communication styles, student needs and parental tips for homework, study and organization that will help alleviate much of the tug-of-war and daily stress between parents and their kids.

Thursday Evening April 1st, 6:30 – 8:00
Black Rock Branch Library
2705 Fairfield Avenue
(203) 337-9676

Thursday April 8th, 6:00 – 7:30 PM
North Branch Library
3455 Madison Avenue
(203) 576-7003

Saturday April 24th, 2:00 – 4:00 PM
Burroughs and Saden Library.
925 Broad Street
(203) 576-7406
In the 3rd floor Community Room



  1. *** You forgot to mention that after clapping for almost everything in the parade, he washed his hands with some water from a plastic water bottle! Sound familiar during Easter season? ***

  2. *** Riddle me this. Who, when & what was the “biggest positive contribution” for Bpt from our state senate & state reps? *** Bpt (OIB) bloggers would really like to know, “LENNIE”??? ***

  3. OMG the short version is devastating enough. I don’t think I could stomach the long version. UB is a huge economic generator for the city that will grow in prominence despite the paranoia of the Mayor. Embarrassment is an understatement. Is it too much to ask for sound judgment? I think we should consider the St. Patrick’s day hand clapping the first day of the rest of this administration’s life and give peace a chance.

  4. It must have been a “Kodak Moment” when his Dis-Honor clapped for UB. Hopefully during this Easter Season, as Mojo has pointed out, this will serve as a Lavabo Moment for Mayor Finch. He needs to wash his feet, too.

    Maybe he is softening his position because he needs hard cash for his re-election campaign. The business community et al. needs to be held accountable for their huge financial backing of Bill, that has also gone on to further feather the Bird’s PAC, and build a nest egg for his next campaign cycle.

    I’m going to go listen to some “Led Zeppole” in honor of Saint Joseph!

    Speaking of Joe’s. It doesn’t seem possible 7 years ago today Joe Ganim was found guilty, and we invaded Iraq. Joe is coming home after serving his time and it’s too bad that our troops can’t come home for time served.

  5. Bill Finch as is his wont does not have a clue. Isn’t his anger towards UB because he lost a job he had there? In either case if he were half as nice to UB as he is towards Sacred Heart it would be great.
    Finch bends over backward for Sacred Heart just ask the North End Residents and does everything he can to knock UB.
    It’s time for the mayor to realize he is the mayor for all the people and he is not the mayor to push forward his personal agendas such as clean and green.
    Does he realize how UB helps Bridgeport’s image? Does he realize how much money is brought into the city by UB students? Does he realize his anti-UB rants could hurt or hinder UB’s drive for an increase in enrollment?
    It’s time for him to stop being a petulant child and time for him to be a leader.

  6. So the Mayor believes that UB is run by criminals. Is the pot calling the kettle black? This city hasn’t exactly been run like a very clean business. Finch allows all sorts of games by the likes of CC, Sherwood, Feeney, Nunn. He even joins in! Guilt by association? How about the infamous tax cheats, you know who I mean. C’mon Mayor, get with it or get out of it.

    1. Indy, you took the words right out of my mouth! Finch hasn’t a clue. He allows his band of misfits and incompetents to run wild, spending the taxpayers’ money like it was monopoly money. But his days are numbered. ALL of their days are numbered.

      Now before I leave for my job in the coal mines, one last thing: It’s great to be a Cape Verdean in Bridgeport (wink)!

  7. I almost forgot. This is for our clean and green mayor and his clean and green administration. Why is the transfer station closed at 11:30 on Saturdays? Why when the line is usually 1/4 mile long on this the only day most residents can get to the transfer station? Is the early closing the reason for all the trash that is dumped at the foot of Asylum Street? Let’s leave the transfer station open all day on Saturdays.

  8. There’s zero evidence that UB is influenced by Finch’s perception. <– today’s post.

    There’s ample evidence that UB is financed by Finch’s perception.

    OIB has been duped by a well-financed public relations campaign. However, Local Eyes is not so easily fooled and remains steadfast in his beliefs.

      1. If anyone is operating a criminal enterprise it is Mr. Finch, terminating career bureaucrats without just cause (hubris fabricated from “cover-your-ass” memos supplied by Mark Anastasi does not constitute just cause). What’s up with that?

        UB does nothing but good for the ‘Port. Mr. Finch’s gassing-off about cults impresses as the words of a man with little self-control and no concept of what is actually good for the people of the city of Bridgeport.

        If it walks like a lame duck and quacks like a lame duck …

  9. The UB accusation was made from publicly available information. The process by which I attained that data is called investigative reporting. The process by which OIB blindly supports UB is called shilling, it’s slang for accomplice to a swindler.

    town committee, you’re a blogger; in this case, I’m a political reporter, prove me wrong because I don’t have to answer to simpletons like you.

  10. UB is beneficial to Bridgeport. I’d never doubt that.

    But UB was a distressed brand name when it was purchased. It’s useful–in a clever way–to its current owners who understand demographics, education and U.S. tax laws. Little has changed.

  11. There is an independent rating agency that has done the research and have deemed UB an accredited INDEPENDENT university. It is the same one that accredited the other INDEPENDENT universities in the state. Since all of the old “moonie” mortgages are gone and UB’s balance sheet is in the black it has also received and is receiving millions of dollars in financing from the Connecticut Health and Education Facilities Authority (CHEFA). I second TC’s request LE, put up concrete evidence or shut up. Rumor and innuendo doesn’t cut it. UB is a strong asset in this community and deserves our respect and encouragement.

  12. Worst kept secret … Local Eyes is a moron. So the parents and students paying tuition are all being financed by the Moonies? Ha ha ha ha ha ha. LE must be a UB admissions reject.

  13. MY PEOPLE are happy. Their comments about my fellow bloggers show insight and make me laugh.

    MY FANS–all three of them–have called showing their support. I speak to them in code.

  14. OIB should have a contest: WHO can show the most productivity while making the most posts.

    I’m prepared to outperform any public-sector employee. C’mon, let’s play ball!

  15. *** There seems to be smoke backing into my P/C from all the continuing blogging, L/E is that you? I hope you’re not drinking, just in case an electrical fire starts so you won’t get blamed for anything (wink)! *** Play Ball! ***

  16. Mojo, what you think is smoke is all that dust we’ve been unsettling. I appreciate that mojo-style backup–you rule like a king.

    We’ve got provisions to last the whole weekend but the forecast is for sunshine. Conclusion: we like our chances.

    1. That is a little borderline, isn’t it Leonard?
      You did not give any content but you have said that Himes has issued a statement in response to the bill’s passage.

      1. Well Grin, it’s pretty much what you’d expect from an embargoed statement. “This is good, this is great … “yadda yadda.” I don’t like embargoed releases, generally ignore them, but since there’s no revelation in the embargoed statement I’ll follow Liz Kerr’s (Jimmy’s communications director) request because she’s good peeps.

    2. What I think is I agree with Himes 100% and as a person from an Urban area I agree more. If a criminal has to get a lawyer then everybody should have the right to a damn doctor. Go get ’em Jimmy. Let the good Himes Roll and if Malloy wins the Primary it is a shoo-in for Jimmy because Stamford will go big for the Democrats across the line! Bpt has your back Jimmy!

  17. Himes vote on health care is one of the reasons I will not vote for him in November. Now before donj goes crazy I favor changing the health care system but not in the way the Dems are going to do it. I am willing to bet Himes did not read the 2400-page bill.
    If this was such a great bill why has it taken the house and the senate over a year to get to the vote on Sunday? They have held the needed majority all this time and now Sunday they are going to resort to “Deemed Passed” for the senate version of the bill.
    One question for Pelosi’s piss boy Himes: Caterpillar the largest manufacturer of construction equipment has come out this week and said the new health bill will cost the company $100 million. They stated that plans to recall laid-off workers will be put off indefinitely. Is this what we have to look forward to as a result of this health care piece of crap?

    1. Lol at TC. When Republicans give ideas that’s when I will have a reason to even think of voting against Jimmy. He has my vote come Nov he is doing a decent job as a freshman. TC will be one of the few in Bpt that votes against Jimmy.

  18. “town committee,” Let’s say you are right about your position on the health care bill (I don’t agree with you), what should Congress and the President do to provide health care for the 30 million people who do not have health? Their primary health care provider and doctor is the Emergency Room at hospitals that you and I now pay for.

    Andy, you and I have been blessed to have a good health care plan. We have both been blessed to retire from the fire department and not worry about our health care but what do we do for those who don’t have what we have?

    Bill Clinton attempted to pass health care 16 years ago but nothing happened with that plan. How much longer will it take to give every American the same health coverage that Congress has?

  19. Ron: this panacea about health care is just that with this bill. You still need to purchase the health care insurance from the same insurance companies and it’s state by state no crossing state lines thus no competition in the state you live in. How does a person on unemployment afford any health insurance at all? My son purchases health insurance from COBRA for $700 a month. He is unemployed but his wife works her plan sucks and costs more than the COBRA. Think of a family with 1 person on unemployment and no other income how do they afford the insurance?
    What makes you think because you now have health care you will have your own doctor? 30 million people all at once where do the doctors come from?
    I like open competition where you can buy health care insurance across state lines. I like tort reform. I like each person having a health credit they can use to purchase insurance. I like the medicare system. I just don’t like this plan in its entirety.
    Refer to my early post as it relates to Caterpillar Equipment Mfg. What if that becomes the norm and it happens in many other industries? What have we accomplished?
    Ron if this was such a great bill why can’t congress have passed it a lot sooner? The Republicans could not stop it.

  20. Many rugged individuals survived the recent financial crisis but not one single pension manager did.

    Conclusion: we need fewer pension managers and more rugged individuals. Pensions aggregate savings which is the key to all future growth. Today we confuse growth in debt with genuine expansion.

  21. I am a major Obama fan. He has done nothing thus far to change my opinion. I intend to support him again when he runs for reelection.

    But he has got me completely confused about the health care reformation. I don’t understand it. I can’t see what he intends to accomplish.

    All of my small business clients are scared to death their increased burden will slow any growth and keep them from hiring new employees. I just don’t get it.

    He wants to provide coverage for the 35 million that don’t have it. The principal reason the 35 million don’t have it is because they can’t afford it. Since the health care reformation will hurt small business eliminating the best possible base for new jobs, the 35 million still won’t be able to afford it. Right?

    My law firm in NYC provides access to health insurance to all employees and partners at a reasonable cost. Thus far we are OK with what our firm pays toward the premiums and our individual contributions. If, as anticipated, our overall costs are going to increase by 33%, much of that will have to be absorbed by the employees and partners. Accordingly, a great deal of money will suddenly be taken from our paychecks that would have otherwise been spent in the marketplace. How, in God’s name, does that help to improve the economy?

    I would vote no. Not until I fully understand the concept and resulting consequence can I support any notion, especially one of this magnitude.

  22. Legislating is more like making sausage. It is never never pretty and it usually needs to be “chaptered” at a later date to fix the mistakes. The concept of buying insurance across state lines is complicated. I don’t want insurance that is allowed to be sold in Connecticut to be underwritten by some weak state insurance department in some place like North Dakota. That state only has one major insurance provider that has the monopoly and should not be allowed to sell in Connecticut just because congress said so.

    The new amendments that were just scored by the congressional budget office helps small business owners more than before. I for one want the bill passed and then immediately corrected with what the CBO just scores. I too am paying over $700 for COBRA because of my preexisting condition. The deem and pass procedure is used a lot so don’t sweat the procedural way they do this. Deem and pass was the way George bush got his huge tax cuts through. My real concern is how much lobbying money is being used to spread disinformation and fear. I am so in favor of a major overhaul of campaign finance to allow our elected officials to hear from their constituency but not be scared to death to vote for what is right because of their fear of a huge loss in campaign donations. I want a positive vote on health care tomorrow or Monday.

  23. You may want a positive vote on health care and you will get it but it may not be what you thought it was. Are you telling me if there were competition where companies could sell across state lines the prices would not go down? Baloney. The people in N Dakota would not be better off if a bunch of insurance carriers were allowed to sell health care in that state. It’s done now with car insurance. Countdown you are feeding us the liberal line.
    The scoring by the CBO basically say this health care plan is deficit neutral but what was not submitted with this package was the $300 Billion in raises doctors received for medicare payment increases. Now it’s not deficit neutral.
    If this were such a great bill why are the Dems doing deemed passed instead of just passing it on a regular vote?
    Countdown scared to death to vote these morons are in many cases voting yes for the package against their constituents’ wishes. They will pay the price.
    BTW deem passed has never been used on a piece of major legislation.

  24. I don’t think they are going to use Deem and Pass but who knows. The D/P process was used over 100 times during the Bush Administration including the major tax cuts. But really, the procedural process is right up there with sausage making. The issue is the Dems won and the Dems need to get a spine and do what they were sent there to do. The Republicans were the best at ramming through what they wanted. Tom Delay didn’t earn the nickname ‘the hammer’ for diddling around with bi-partisanship. The difference with this vote is now that the Supreme Court took the fiscal constraints off big businesses to fund election campaigns, the Dems are really scared of the advertisements and robo-calls and emails making the actual vote a nightmare. The cut and paste, the ‘taking out of context,’ the total obfuscation of the truth as we know it, makes this politics NOT as usual. It is politics as funded by the big companies, their lobbyists and creative advertising. Totally out of control. Totally fraught with disinformation and fear. A real detriment to democracy as our founding fathers crafted.

    Now, one more shot at insurance plans across state lines. What good is it if the insurance plan is cheaper when the policy is really lousy? My concern is the state that has the lowest oversight and standards over the insurance industry will quickly become the home for the insurance companies that want to sell health insurance. They base themselves where quality is trumped by low cost, high deductibles and horrible actuarial practices. But since the lights are out at that particular State Insurance Department, they develop a crappy bottom of the barrel policy and ship it to Connecticut to sell. The Fed law will prohibit Connecticut’s Insurance Department from rejecting the crappy but cheap plan. I don’t know about you but I trust the smart people at the CT Insurance Department to vet the companies and the policies. They will not let a low quality policy be sold in CT. Take away that oversight and let the company from east Oshkosh sell their wares here will have us in real trouble. It’s complicated.

  25. *** Hasn’t the healthcare bill been tweaked down to 250-pages??? And instead of actually working bipartisan to make the major changes as opposed to minor ones, the Republicans have done more “obstructing” than injecting new ideas into the bill, other than let’s start the process from the beginning again??? What major bills in history have been passed that did not need some sort of political tweaking or amendments @ some time to fix unforeseen problems with the bill? It’s now or never for a step towards some form of universal healthcare for the America that’s without! And like any type of major change that affects the masses, it’s usually met with opposition; especially by the America that has! If it’s meant to be, it will happen & only “time will tell” if in fact it was the right thing to do? Also a freshman Congressman like Himes, who I did “not” vote for should “not” be held accountable solely for his vote on this healthcare bill but by his entire 1st congressional term. *** “YES WE CAN, IF WE KEEP HOPE ALIVE!” ***

    1. The “number of pages” thing is so stupid–if you go and look at one of those pages, you’ll see it takes 3-4 pages of legalese to say anything at all. I don’t want my Congressman and Senators spending all their time plowing through that nonsense, that’s what they pay staff for.

  26. *** Reply to T/C; I was not blowing smoke up L/E’s ass but rather supporting a friend. Who like anyone else on this blog has a right to voice his opinions providing he does not do it in a personal disrespectful way! Disagreeing is one thing but basically just attacking one’s comments just to be offensive is another, don’t you think? It’s really pretty simple if you think of the shoe being on the other foot! ***

    1. Mojo is correct Republicans only know how to object they never have a plan. Remember to fill in your census. This is going out to the thousands of illegal Immigrants in Bpt please fill it out you have nothing to worry about.

      1. When donj makes a candid pitch to illegal immigrants in Bridgeport, is that what it means to have skin in the game?

        Fill out the form and let’s find out …

  27. I really am not very happy the pre-existing condition exclusion for adults doesn’t go away until 2016. But I understand and accept they have to get as many of the uninsured insured so they get them out of the hospital emergency rooms with the most expensive care and get them into the doctor’s office for preventative medicine first. That will take time and I respect there has to be fiscal balance. I am glad the pre-existing exclusion for children goes away 6 months after the bill passes. Children living at home will be covered until they are 26 as soon as the bill passes. Those two changes are great for families. As for the number of pages in the bill think about it. The health insurance industry is the most lawyered industry there is. How many pages is your insurance policy book? If you put it in the large type legislative font I bet it would be hundreds of pages. So the number of pages in the bill is totally irrelevant in my opinion because untangling the screwed-up health insurance industry needs lawyering on top of lawyering.

    1. Countdown, it’s true existing insurance companies won’t be required to take on customers with pre-existing conditions for a couple years, but the bill also immediately creates a program for “individuals who have been uninsured for several months or have been denied a policy because of pre-existing conditions” that will stay in effect until the exchanges come into effect.

  28. Congratulations Central Boys in winning the CIAC Class LL title at Mohegan Sun tonight. Good job fellas and to coach Barry McCloud. Too bad the superintendent, mayor and other elected officials weren’t there including Tom McCarthy. Central is in his district, isn’t it? I did see Mayor Mark Lauretti playing it very low key. CHS principal was there as well as several teachers. Just wanted to make a note that Finch, Ramos and McCarthy didn’t bother to support these kids who made history tonight.

  29. *** If in fact the bill has been reduced for reading & understanding of major items from 2500 to 250, it’s quite relevant for the legislative body attempting to understand its overall potential. However like many legal documents in general, sometimes it’s the extra small print pages that get overlooked that can come back to haunt you in the future! ***

  30. Countdown you act as if this is the answer to all our health care problems it’s not. You of all people should know many bills coming out of Washington are so complicated that no one understands them. Health care based on what the talking heads are saying is very complicated.
    On an easier note to think as soon as the bill is passed the emergency rooms will be empty is a mistake. It is estimated by the time this bill is fully in place there will be a shortage of 150,000 primary care doctors. It is true everyone will be eligible for health care but let me ask you how does a single person on unemployment and having rent to pay and food to buy afford health care which will now be mandatory?
    Does the small business which faces a small fine for not having health insurance for its employees pay the fines or pay the thousands of dollars per employee that health care costs?
    This bill has not been reduced to 250 pages. The 250 pages are things that will be added when the bill goes back to the senate.
    Countdown you sound like a true politician Legislative Font give me a break!!!

  31. If the Health Care Bill is such great legislation why are they as of right now still not sure they have the 216 votes necessary for passage? It’s clear the Dems do not need a single Republican vote to pass this bill yet the count is still in doubt (it will pass).
    Well one thing Connecticut got out of all this bribery was a new $100 million hospital for UConn. Isn’t that just marvelous?

  32. TC is a Republican from the Karl Rove school of politics. Instead of thinking of yourself, why don’t you consider the millions of people without healthcare or those dropped because they got sick or those denied coverage because of a pre-existing condition? This is America and HEALTHCARE IS A CIVIL RIGHT!

  33. CHS: Sorry to disappoint you but health care is NOT a civil right. Where did you get the idea that it is a civil right? Let me ask you what you will be saying when the city says to you we need to raise your contribution to cover the added cost of the new health care bill.
    If you read an earlier post from me you would have seen I am in favor of health care reform such as selling insurance across state lines to increase competition. I am in favor of NO exclusions for pre-existing conditions. I am in favor of health care accounts. There are many other things I favor. BTW 55% of the American population is against this bill.
    Where do the poor get the money to purchase this insurance? BTW the passing or failing of this bill does not affect me one way or the other. Do you know that about 15 million of the 30 million they are saying have no coverage fall in the 20-year-old age group and choose not to purchase health care because they are young and feel they won’t get sick?

  34. This bill prevents insurance companies from denying people with pre-existing conditions. It removes insurance caps, and we get to keep our kids on our insurance until they are 26. There are tax credits for small businesses. People who have been laid off or can’t find jobs get to keep health care. We see less abuse of using ERs as Doctor’s office and free preventative care. This bill will save us money.

    TC do you and your family have health care? Tell me it is not a right when someone in your family is dying and can’t get, or has been denied insurance.

    Health care is a fundamental right, not a privilege … “It is not a political issue, it is a moral issue …” Edward Kennedy.

  35. TC. Yes there is a shortage of health care providers now but that sector will experience job growth once we have a plan in place to get the uninsured out of the emergency rooms. Those emergency room visits are the most costly way to treat preventable medical conditions and drags the medical facilities into the deep red. I don’t like parts of this bill. So what? Overall it moves this country in the right direction. The stupid parts will get fixed over time. That always happens. I just know the gazillion dollars spent by the health care insurance and pharmaceutical lobbyists to fund the variety of scare tactics has distorted and delayed the adoption of health care reform.

    I for one am glad UCONN will be getting the $100 million. That is what we send our Congressional delegation to Washington for … to bring home the money for things that are important; not frivolous, but important. Upgrading the State’s hospital in Farmington is a credible earmark. The State Bond Commission will then have to bond less to get the job done. I want them to get on with it. Dems need a spine and pass this health thing and move on to fixing the financial regulations.

    The things that let Wall Street get away with those default swaps are still permitted. I also think a Consumer Protection Agency is needed to help balance the playing field but it shouldn’t be housed in the Federal Reserve Bank. Senator Dodd was right to bag the Republicans last week and move the financial regulations bill forward. Financial institutions are still not lending to the development community so development deals are still very very slow to close. If real estate development deals don’t close construction workers don’t work. Wall Street needs a new set of oversight regulations.

    Today is the day for health care reform. Do it Dems, and then get on to fixing the financial regulations that let Wall Street screw us all.

    1. Credible Earmark? You are kidding right? I suppose the Cornhusker kickback is considered worthy by people in Nebraska. I suppose the Louisiana kickback is credible and the list goes on. $100 million to benefit a small section of CT is justified I think Not.
      Every Economist weighing in on Dodd’s financial reform basically states it’s a joke full of smoke and mirrors and has no teeth and still helps the banking industry whom Dodd has benefited from.

  36. TC–what do you think of the Declaration of Independence? It clearly says LIFE is an inalienable Right.

    We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, — That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.

    1. LIFE might be an unalienable right, but maintaining it is up to you and has nothing to do with government-supplied healthcare, despite a quote from the late Sen. Kennedy.

    2. Thank you, MCAT. No need for me to comment further. People who retire on a comfortable firefighter’s pension with full health and prescription coverage have a difficult time relating to those who are not so fortunate. Nothing against TC–he put in his time and was entitled to his retirement privileges. But he needs to open his eyes to other hard-working men and women and graduated college students who want health care coverage and can’t get it. Bring on the vote!

      1. CHS: You are right I earned what I have the key being EARNED. There are things in this health care bill that I would benefit from as an example closing the donut hole in the prescription drug rider, that will save me about $3000 but I still feel this health care bill in its present form is bad. You act like passing this bill ends everyone’s problems with health care. Remember the same insurance companies everyone is rightfully bitching about will be picking up 30 million new customers and still have a monopoly on rates. Where are the working poor going to get the money for this mandated health care?

    3. MCAT: A key wording in the Declaration is Deriving just powers from the consent of the GOVERNED. It is well documented the majority of the American people do not want this health care bill in its present form.
      The passage of this bill does not fulfill what is written in the declaration of independence. What you presented as an argument for health care is a poor way of justifying your position.
      In your scenario everyone is entitled to a new car, a big house with a pool and limitless credit.
      The key to all this is the word PURSUIT.

  37. LIFE has a beginning, a middle and an end. Government healthcare doesn’t always prolong life but it always postpones death. I’d abolish it now while we have the chance and get Uncle Sam out of the healthcare business permanently!

    In the process we could instantly balance the budget and save Western civilization.

    What a great way for Congress to spend a Sunday afternoon (pass the pretzels, please).

  38. MCAT I agree there are many elements in this bill that I like and I agree with the majority. There are things I don;t like and one of the key elements is the lack of competition amongst Insurance companies.
    Countdown talks about a single insurance company covering North Dakota chances are that single company is owned by one of the major health insurance Companies. This is done all the time. The large insurance company I worked for owned at least 12 other insurance companies by other names in various states.
    I am against the deals with the pharmaceutical companies, big labor and many other entities.

  39. I’m so pissed. Now we see the real side of these right-wing racist homophobic sons of bitches that are opposing health care. They called a black man a nigger… They called a gay man a faggot. These are the faces of the Republican party a bunch of people who have hatred in their hearts and are racist. I urge all my people of color not to vote for a single Republican come November. And if someone is of the gay community I urge you to do the same. Nigger and faggot are words that should never be used and this is the face of the Republican party a bunch of racist and homophobic idiots.

    1. Are we now getting a little personal but that’s okay and BTW we took less money and paid 8% of our salary for that pension. In effect it lowered the retirement requirements by 5 years from 25 to 20.

  40. TC, I want stiff competition too. I am just concerned that the Connecticut consumer that uses the health insurance exchange will be able to know whether cheap means quality or crap. If the insurance company you worked for set up a separate company with a crap policy that is cheaper, it shouldn’t be allowed to be sold in Connecticut without a rating by the CT Dept of Insurance that tells the consumer even though it is cheap, the buyer needs to beware.

    As for the UCONN $100 million, that Farmington Facility is the medical portion of UCONN. It teaches, does research and delivers treatment. It is a State-owned facility. The upgrade is a $600 million price tag. I think they have raised about $250 million from philanthropic and private. The balance is heading in part or whole to the State Bond Commission just like the state funded the upgrades at UCONN Storrs, Gateway CC and Southern CT University in New Haven. So from my perspective I am glad our Washington delegation is bringing home money for a worthy cause. Just like I expect the Bridgeport delegation to bring home money for worthy projects for Bridgeport. I am not hyperventilating about earmarks, it is a minuscule part of the price tag. So long as the process is transparent, the earmark is for worthy causes, the delegation should work hard to bring back money to Connecticut and Bridgeport. How do you think we got the transit garage by the arena and the new regional bus terminal … earmarks by Chris Shays.

  41. Countdown: The Feds could have regulated the industry on a countrywide level so the rules were the same in all states. After all, Federal Rules supersede state rules.
    The small companies that were set up met the company standards but were put into place in case they wanted to close down the company it did not go against the Main company’s name. It also in some case is where they had higher premiums for at-risk drivers.

  42. When Social Security was passed it was not perfect and it is still not, but it was a significant improvement. When civil rights reform was passed it was not perfect but it was life-changing. This is a start, an historic start.

    Taxpayers already pay for ER visits and hospital stays after a person’s life is threatened. Wouldn’t it be cheaper to pay for preventative care, before it gets to the critical point? Wouldn’t it be less expensive to send a child to the Dr. for strep throat instead of to the ER? Wouldn’t it be cheaper to pay for someone’s pacemaker before they have a heart attack, take ambulance rides, have surgery and end up in the ccu for months? That list goes on. I personally had no insurance for 4 years when I was younger, from the age of 21-25. I couldn’t afford it and couldn’t be covered by my parents. I worked in an industry that didn’t pay for health care, but I was consistently employed (sometimes 16 hour days.) I nearly went broke trying to pay for the 20 stitches in the bottom of my foot when I accidentally stepped on a piece of glass. I didn’t see the Dr. when I was sick with strep throat and I was out of work for two weeks and got let go. Now I had no job and I was still paying for my stitches. Now take my story and make it diabetes, a broken leg, cancer, Alzheimer’s, a brain tumor. Everyone who has health care through work is a layoff away from disaster. And what about state, federal, and municipal pensions with health care benefits, don’t the taxpayers pay for them? Why should the tradesmen, small business owners, contractors, and all people without coverage be different from them?

  43. MCAT everything you say is true but this bill will not do what you want it to do. You can have health care under the bill that is going to pass but can you afford the premiums once you go on unemployment or as a small businessman or women?
    The other thing can employers afford all the coverage they will be required to pay out? They will now be forced to take out or pay a penalty for part-time workers.
    Who pays when small businesses are forced to cover their workers including part-timers the consumer pays because the price of goods will go up to cover the costs.
    I stand by what I said if this was such a great bill or even if it was a great beginning why did it take a Democratically controlled house and senate so long to get to this point we are at today?

  44. Well said MCAT. Health care is a basic human right and should not be tied to a persons financial worth. There is nothing more important than human life–period. This bill is far from perfect but it does move us closer to universal quality health care for all.

    As with both Social Security and Medicare, the reactionary GOP is opposing this bill. So be it. The bill is going to pass without them.

  45. John from Black Rock has always been my favorite blogger from day 1. Enough said it is the most important thing and should not be based on someone’s wealth point blank. It seems like the majority of OIB bloggers agree with health care.

  46. *** Two Americas that seem to be represented @ times by 2 major political parties that individually are broken up into smaller sets within their “main” party. Never has this seemed more prevalent than during the McCain/Obama presidential election & during Obama’s first year in office. Especially @ a period in American history where so many chips have been stacked up against America & our fundamental way of life! Yet whether it’s the right-wing Palin tea party supporters or the Pelosi coffee party supporters, they all seem to want to go to the same Political Ball, however have different means of transportation & ideas on which is the best way to get there? Right or wrong, good or bad, political ideas must “start” somewhere & hopefully pick up enough momentum to become a bill, be debated, voted on & continue to move through the process. If it’s meant to be, it will happen & then, only “time will tell” whether it was truly the right thing to do for “all” Americans, those that have & those that have not! ***

  47. I will be making my donation to the Democratic Senate Campaign Committee, the Democratic House Campaign Committee and Rep Himes campaign as soon as the bill passes the house. Should be around 10:30 tonight.
    Get ready with the release Lennie.


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