individual market

2

House Republicans introduce their plan to repeal, recycle and reuse Obamacare

  • House Republicans have released a draft version of legislation designed to repeal the Affordable Care Act and replace it with something different.
  • The new legislation will replace the ACA’s subsidies for purchasing insurance on the individual marketplace with refundable tax credits. 
  • Those tax credits will be doled out based on a person’s age, family size and income, and potentially provide less financial assistance than existing subsidies for low-income people.
  • It also ends future funding for the ACA’s Medicaid expansion and returns the cutoff for eligibility to what it would have been had the ACA never been passed. 
  • However, the bill allows individuals who received coverage under the expansion over the past few years to retain Medicaid so long as they keep their coverage without any breaks.
  • The bill also maintains preexisting condition coverage, as well as a popular provision allowing children to stay on their parents’ health care coverage until the age of 26. Read more (3/6/17 7:53 PM)

The GOP’s health care plan penalizes you for not having coverage — sound familiar?

  • One of the most criticized parts of Obamacare is the individual mandate, citizens have to pay a tax penalty for not having insurance coverage.
  • Ironically, the GOP’s new plan contains a provision that forces people in the individual market to pay a penalty for not having health insurance.
  • Under the new plan, if a person in the individual market has a gap in coverage of more than two months and tries to buy health insurance, an insurer can “increase the monthly premium rate otherwise applicable to such individual for such coverage” by as much as 30%. Read more (3/6/17 10:19 PM)
theatlantic.com
The Atlantic: The AHCA Could Trigger a Recession
A new report argues that the Republican health law would slash jobs, perhaps leading to an economic downturn.
By Vann R. Newkirk II

For a president who says that his number one priority is bringing jobs to America, he’s sure endorsing the wrong policy. The AHCA could brutalize the health care industry, shedding “total jobs by about a million, total state gross domestic products by $93 billion, and total business output by $148 billion by 2026.”

So if you’re one of those people who thinks that the AHCA won’t affect you because you’re not on Medicaid, or you’re not on the individual market, or you have insurance through your employer, or you live in a blue state, think again. 

The AHCA is going to cause massive damage to America if it’s passed, far, far more than we even realize now.

Proposed four-party system for the US
  • Socialist - Healthcare for all, education for all, housing for all, and if you want to take advantage of our giant consumer market or our talented workforce, you better help pay for it.
  • Centrist - America is mostly okay right now and it would be unwise to shake things up too much, too fast.  Let’s work within the system for gradual progress without damaging the institutions we have.
  • Libertarian - Government is here to build roads, enforce contracts, and provide national defense.  But it’s not suited to micromanage the country.  The free market, individual choice, and local organizations will come up with better-optimized solutions.
  • Traditionalist - Without American culture and values, America is just a place on a map.  This isn’t about race or religion or sexuality per se, but if you’re not a straight white Christian, it’s your responsibility to adapt to traditional American culture, not to try and change it.

Advantages:

  • Actually represents the segments of political belief better than the current parties.
  • Potential for cooperation across current party lines, for example Libertarians and Socialists agreeing to oppose the war on drugs.
  • Hopefully no one party would get 50% of seats in Congress, meaning every decision would require substantive discussion and compromise.
  • Party loyalty would hopefully be less ironclad and less able to divide communities.
  • Government not doing the weird dualism thing where if Democrats believe X, Republicans have to believe not-X, even when it’s absurd.
  • Fewer situations where voting is all about “the lesser evil.”
  • In general, fewer situations where game theory runs things instead of the actual needs and wants of the people.

Disadvantages:

  • I just invented the Centrist party and I already think they’re a load of lukewarm tilapia filets.
  • Terrifying prospects for what the Traditionalist party will turn into without the Libertarians to hold them back.
  • I didn’t do much reading about real multi-party systems before writing this so there’s probably a lot of fascinating ways it would break in real life.

If Trump wants, he can unleash serious damage by undermining the individual markets in three ways. Insurers currently making decisions will closely scrutinize signs from the administration to gauge those markets’ long-term viability. His administration can weaken the individual mandate through various mechanisms, which would mean fewer younger and healthier people and higher premiums. It can pull back on all forms of outreach designed to get people to enroll on the marketplaces. Or it can stop paying “cost-sharing reductions” to insurance companies, which enable them to reduce out-of-pocket costs for lower-income enrollees, which may encourage insurers to flee the markets.
 
 

This could strand many of the 12 million people who have gotten coverage on the individual markets, according to Larry Levitt, a senior vice president at the Kaiser Family Foundation. They could be left with “no insurers in the marketplaces, no way to get tax credits, no way to get coverage at all,” Levitt tells me, adding that the insurer exodus could also prevent people who individually obtain coverage outside the exchanges from doing so: “You’re talking about small business owners, farmers, self-employed people, early retirees — who would have no way of getting health insurance.”

— 

After the health-care fiasco, Trump’s next move may be even more disastrous

Trump is a childish, vindictive, bully. It wouldn’t be surprising at all if he tried to hurt the people who benefit from the ACA just because he can.

Today in Politics
March 7, 2017
  • Wikileaks released a new trove of thousands of documents today including a supposed arsenal of hacking tools the CIA has used to spy on espionage targets. This release was nicknamed “Vault 7”. In their press release, WikiLeaks said “The source wishes to initiate a public debate about the security, creation, use, proliferation and democratic control of cyberweapons.” (WikiLeaks)(NYT)(WP)
  • United States Congressman Jason Chaffetz said that rather than “getting that new iPhone that they just love,” low-income Americans should take they money they would have spent on it and “invest it in their own health care.” It should be noted that the typical annual cost of an individual market plan costs is about six times as costly as a “new iPhone.” (CNN)(HILL)(WP)
  • Jewish community centers and religious sites continue to receive more threats. All 100 United States Senators asked Trump’s administration for “swift action” regarding the hate crimes and threats. (WP)(CNN)(HILL)
  • This morning Trump tweeted: “122 vicious prisoners, released by the Obama Administration from Gitmo, have returned to the battlefield. Just another terrible decision!”. This was later found to be false. Only nine of those (6 per cent) were released under Barack Obama’s administration, with the vast majority freed before his inauguration on 22 January 2009, under George W Bush. (NYT)(IND)(HILL)
  • House Intelligence Committee has scheduled the first hearing on Russian election interference for March 20. A key subject will be Trump’s contact with Russian officials.(CNN)(HILL)(WP)
  • President Donald Trump announced his full endorsement of the GOP health care repeal and replace bill. He also warned legislators if they cannot pass the bill, it could be a “bloodbath” in the 2018 midterm elections. (CNN)(BBC)(ATL)
buzzfeed.com
Trump Gives Republicans An Ultimatum On Health Care Bill: Vote Or We're Done
After Republicans delayed a vote on their health care bill, lacking enough votes to pass it Thursday, an agency head told members Thursday night that if they don’t pass it by Friday, the White House is done.
By Paul McLeod, Alexis Levinson

House Republicans clearly do not have the votes to pass their health care bill and on Thursday night, President Trump’s administration told them in no uncertain terms: Pass it tomorrow or we’re done.

After a day full of meetings and last-minute arm-wringing went nowhere, Trump dispatched two deputies to Capitol Hill for an evening meeting of the House Republican conference. Trump adviser Kellyanne Conway, White House senior adviser Steve Bannon and former Rep. Mick Mulvaney, now Director of the Officer of Management and Budget, in the meeting, in which Mulvaney told Republicans that the White House is done negotiation and will move on from the health care issue unless the House passes the bill on Friday, according to a GOP aide.

The threat comes after House Republican leadership desperately scrambled Thursday to save the American Health Care Act. Despite talk of progress, Speaker Paul Ryan and his team clearly still did not have the necessary votes to bring the sweeping bill to replace Obamacare to the floor on Thursday, as originally planned. That vote has been pushed off to Friday for now.

Ryan briefly spoke to reporters after the meeting. “For seven and a half years we’ve been promising the American people that we would repeal and replace this broken law because it is collapsing and failing families. Tomorrow we’re proceeding,” Ryan said, taking no questions and walking away.

When asked whether Republicans now have the votes to pass the bill, Rep. Steve Stivers who chairs the National Republican Congressional Committee told reporters they will see where they are on Friday.

“I think we’ll find out tomorrow,” Stivers said. “I think it’s gonna be a surprise.”

Both the hard-right House Freedom Caucus and some moderate Republicans remain opposed to the bill, despite an overwhelming push from Republican leadership and the White House.

“We’re committed to stay here until we get it done. So whether the vote is tonight, tomorrow or five days from here, the president will get a victory because I believe we all want to negotiate in good faith and deliver on the promise,” Freedom Caucus chairman Mark Meadows said in the middle of a marathon of meetings.

Meadows said he was still a no on the AHCA, as are many of his Freedom Caucus members, but he is “desperately trying to get to yes.”

The problem remains the same for leadership — any push to win over the Freedom Caucus further alienates moderates and vice versa. After nearing a deal on Wednesday night that the Freedom Caucus seemed optimistic about, moderate members said they could not support the changes.

Even after the meeting with members and White House officials on Thursday night, some Republicans remained unmoved. New York Rep. Dan Donovan, the lone Republican congressman in New York City, exited the meeting saying he was still a no.

“I’m not a fan of the Affordable Care Act. It’s hurt people in my district. This is not giving them the relief that they need,” he said.

Meanwhile, Republicans who are on-board with the plan are growing increasingly frustrated with their colleagues who won’t sign on. “You get one chance at something like this. So we need to get it done,” Oklahoma Rep. Tom Cole said. “You’re either part of a team or you’re not.”

Republican leadership made a last-minute pitch to the Freedom Caucus before Thursday’s now-delayed vote that seems to have fallen short. Meadows spoke of promises being too vague and not going far enough to bring down insurance premiums.

The deal revolves around the Freedom Caucus’ desire to do away with the essential health benefits (or things insurance plans must cover) introduced under Obamacare. Ways and Means Committee Chairman Kevin Brady said the compromise involves giving states the power to do away with these benefits, rather than doing it at the federal level.

House Veterans Affairs Committee Chair Phil Roe said this policy would only impact the individual markets, which makes up about 6% of the total health insurance market.

Essential health benefits mandate that all health insurance plans must cover certain things such as hospitalization, maternity costs, ambulances, pediatric care, addiction treatment, emergency services, and prescription drugs.

The Freedom Caucus argues these and other Obamacare rules drive up premium costs. Brady said the group is pushing for even more freedom to remove these rules than what is in the offer currently on the table.

Earlier on Thursday, House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy would not commit to holding the vote on Friday when asked on CNN. McCarthy said only that the House will begin debating the bill formally on Friday and that he hoped it would pass that day.

But after the meeting with the White House, a GOP aide said that Republicans will vote Friday.

“We’re going to get this done. … I know we’ll get this done,” McCarthy said on CNN. “Look, when we bring it to the floor we’re going to have the votes.”

It takes 22 Republicans to vote no to kill the bill. About two dozen have declared to be either a hard no or leaning no, not including softer members of the Freedom Caucus who could flip if their group ultimately endorses the plan.

White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer told reporters Thursday that the administration is confident the bill will pass, after saying in a press conference earlier this week that “there is no plan B.”

“It’s going to pass, so that’s it,” Spicer said Thursday.

2

3 huge problems in the GOP’s health care bill that not everyone is talking about

Large employers might cap basic benefits for employees

    • A controversial amendment to the bill allows states to opt out of requiring a category of care called “Essential Health Benefits” which could affect those who get healthcare through their employers.
    • As the Brookings Institution’s Matthew Fiedler wrote, if a state decides to opt out of Essential Heath Benefits under the AHCA, it effectively gives large employers the opportunity to limit those benefits. The benefits include certain provisions like maternity care or emergency room coverage. 

Healthcare tax credits could be worthless in liberal states

    • Under the AHCA, people shopping for insurance as individuals in state-run markets get a series of tax credits to ease costs.
    • However, the bill bars people from applying those tax credits toward plans that cover abortion services. 
    • Places like New York and California have laws that essentially require all health care plans  to cover abortion services. 
    • That means that no individual in those states could use the tax credits in the first place because all of the state’s available plans cover abortion.

The bill slashes special education funding

    • A little-noticed provision in the AHCA would slash funding for special education programs that schools receive through Medicaid.
    • Currently, U.S. schools take in around $4 million in Medicaid reimbursements for special education programs.
    • The Times reported that under the new law states would no longer have to consider schools eligible Medicaid providers, meaning they could end Medicaid reimbursements to those schools all together. Read more (5/4/17 6:30 PM)
vox.com
Senate GOP expected to add new penalties for the uninsured into their health bill
A six-month waiting period for Americans who fail to maintain continuous coverage could come as early as Monday.
By Sarah Kliff

Sarah Kliff and Dylan Scott at Vox:

Senate Republicans are expected to revise their health bill early next week, adding in a provision that could lock Americans out of the individual market for six months if they fail to maintain continuous insurance coverage.

Health insurance industry sources familiar with the plan say the change could be announced as early as Monday.

The six-month waiting period would fill a big policy gap in the current Better Care Act, which requires health plans to accept all patients — but doesn’t require all Americans to purchase coverage, as the Affordable Care Act does. Experts expect that this would cause a death spiral, where only the sickest patients purchase coverage and premiums skyrocket.

But the six-month waiting period could also complicate the Senate Republicans’ repeal efforts, because it may run afoul of the chamber’s complex reconciliation rules. Republicans are using what’s called “budget reconciliation” to pass their health care bill with a bare majority of 50 votes and avoid a Democratic filibuster. But the rules governing reconciliation restrict what policies the GOP can include in their bill — the waiting period is one of the provisions thought to be in doubt.

Why Senate Republicans want an individual market waiting period

All health insurance markets need healthy enrollees and sick enrollees to keep premiums affordable. The healthy people end up subsidizing the high medical bills of the sick people — and also purchase protection against financial ruin should they become one of the sick people themselves.

The Affordable Care Act required all insurance companies to accept all Americans regardless of pre-existing conditions. It also required all Americans to purchase coverage or pay a penalty, a way to push healthy people into the marketplace.

The individual mandate is the least popular provision of the Affordable Care Act and Republicans have promised for years to repeal it. But policy experts agree that they need some other policy to replace it — or else risk sending the individual insurance market into collapse.

[…]

It’s not yet clear if the Senate’s proposal, a waiting period instead of a premium surcharge, would be permissible. Republicans and Democrats will be negotiating with the Senate parliamentarian, who oversees the chamber’s rules, next week to decide what can be included in the bill and what cannot.

But if the waiting period is deemed to comply with the Byrd Rule, it is expected to be added to the Senate bill.

vox.com
The American Health Care Act: The Republicans’ bill to replace Obamacare, explained
The GOP bill would roll back key Affordable Care Act programs in a big way.
By Sarah Kliff

Sarah Kliff at Vox:

House Republicans released their long-awaited replacement plan for the Affordable Care Act on Monday.

The American Health Care Act was developed in conjunction with the White House and Senate Republicans. Two big questions — how many people it will cover and how much it will cost — are still unresolved: It will likely cover fewer people than the Affordable Care Act currently does, but we don’t know how many. And the Congressional Budget Office has not yet scored the legislation, so its price tag is unknown.

But what we can say for sure is this:

  • Some of Obamacare’s signature features are gone immediately, such as the tax on people who don’t purchase health care. Other protections, including the ban on discriminating people with pre-existing conditions and the provision that allows young adults to stay on their parents’ plan through age 26, would survive.
  • The plan maintains the Medicaid expansion — for now. The Affordable Care Act expanded Medicaid to cover millions of low-income Americans. And, in a big shift from previous drafts of the legislation, which ended Medicaid expansion immediately, this bill would continue to that coverage expansion through January 1, 2020. At that point, enrollment would “freeze,” and legislators expect enrollees would drop out of the program as their incomes change.
  • The replacement plan benefits people who are healthy and high-income, and disadvantages those who are sicker and lower-income. The replacement plan would make several changes to what health insurers can charge enrollees who purchase insurance on the individual market, as well as changing what benefits their plans must cover. In aggregate, these changes could be advantageous to younger and healthier enrollees who want skimpier (and cheaper) benefit packages. But they could be costly for older and sicker Obamacare enrollees, who rely on the law’s current requirements.
  • The bill looks a lot more like Obamacare than previous drafts. A curious thing has happened to the Republican replacement plan as it has evolved through multiple drafts: it has begun to look more and more like Obamacare itself. The bill keeps some key features of Obamacare, like giving more help to lower-income Americans and the Medicaid expansion, around in a scaled-back form. This speaks to how entrenched the health care law has become since its enactment 7 years ago, and how difficult it will be for the GOP to repeal it entirely.

The principle of solidarity would critique a narrow approach to the economy that uses a one-dimensional measure of the economic growth of a nation, singularly defined by profits, that promotes policies that maximize the freedom of markets and individual choice, and that believes that market forces left to themselves are the best — indeed, the only — arbiters of economic progress. This narrow approach has produced “an economy that kills,” as Pope Francis has said.

In its place, a consistent ethic of solidarity would argue that inclusion and economic security for all are the measures of economic health and the criteria for economic decision-making. Solidarity produces the kind of social-market economy that John Paul II advocated, which involves, as Pope Francis noted, passing from a liquid economy “directed at revenue profiting from speculation and lending at interest, to a social economy that invests in persons creating jobs and providing training.

—  Card. Cupich of Chicago, rocking my world

anonymous asked:

When did you realize you could live off of your work as a Writer? I know it seems too personal but, do you have an average number of how much you make per month? People seem to be so secretive about that and I don't understand why. I want to live as a writer but I couldn't possibly do it without knowing I would be able to pay my rent and food

People are “secretive” about that for a few reasons:

1. No one wants to talk about personal finances online. It’s uncomfortable and, more importantly, unsafe.

2. A vast majority of writers fail by society’s standards. They make shit money. The average traditionally published writer sells 1000 copies in 2 years, and the average self-published writer sells 100 in the same amount of time. No one wants to announce these numbers.

3. A lot of people don’t understand the writing industry or the averages. They think you’re only successful if you’re on the NYT best seller list. So when an author is selling well and announces it, sometimes the reaction is mixed - what? That doesn’t sound like very much. It’s not fun having to explain your success each time you present it.

My reasons are #1 and #3. My platform is huge, and announcing my financial status to everyone obviously puts me at risk. And in the past when I’ve given sales updates, I was met with confusion, sadly from aspiring writers who should know better. For example, when I announced that I had sold my first 2000 copies of EVE, people were surprised that I hadn’t sold 20,000 on the first day alone. Having to explain that such numbers are insane, especially for a debut author (with a much smaller audience at the time) got old fast. No more announcements. Too many idiots in the mix.

All that said, there’s a big flaw with your question, and that’s the fact that you’re assuming there’s some kind of financial norm among writers. The norm is dick money. Most writers write part-time and have a full-time job to support them. Writers like me who do this full-time are the minority. So even if writers announced their finances, it wouldn’t do you much good. This is a job that depends on the individual writer, their marketing tools, their audience. It doesn’t matter how well I’m doing, because I am not reflective of you. I have a YouTube channel, a large audience, and zero debt - so while writing is most definitely paying all of my bills, I have fewer bills than most people.

There is no crystal ball with this industry. You work your ass off, you market like crazy, and you wait for the sales to come in. At some point in your writing career, you will be able to tell if the money is good enough for you to quit your day job. But that is not something you’ll be able to predict before anything is released. That’s a realization that will come long after your work is published. 

reuters.com
Trump may halt insurer payments to force Democrats to table on healthcare
U.S. President Donald Trump told The Wall Street Journal on Wednesday that he might consider withholding billions of dollars of Obamacare payments to health insurers to force Democrats back to the negotiating table on healthcare.

U.S. President Donald Trump told The Wall Street Journal on Wednesday that he might consider withholding billions of dollars of Obamacare payments to health insurers to force Democrats back to the negotiating table on healthcare.

Insurers and major medical groups have warned that not funding the payments, called cost-sharing reduction subsidies, which help cover out-of-pocket medical expenses for low-income Americans, could wreak havoc in the individual insurance markets. Trump told The Wall Street Journal that by withholding the payments, Democrats will call him to negotiate.

…yeah, not only is this wrong for purposefully sabatoging the health insurance markets, thereby inevitably screwing people over, it’s also stupid politics:

1) Any agreement you’re gonna make with Democrats is probably gonna get Republicans mad at you. Do you really think you’re gonna get enough Democrats on board to make up the loss Republicans?

2) When you’re President, you get the blame for everything. If shit implodes, it’s gonna be on you, especially since you got a majority party in control and even attempted a bill and failed.

anonymous asked:

time(.)com/4530659/farmers-dump-milk-glut-surplus/ genuine question-- your thoughts on this? i recently gave up veganism because i realized that animal cruelty is by and large facilitated by capitalism, and that trying to take individual action and pursue a boycott was useless at best, since under capitalism production isn't related to demand. but i'd like to hear your thoughts bc you were the one who convinced me to go vegan in the first place

This case and others like it were solely the result of government subsidies which allowed farmers to continue producing past demand, but those subsidies themselves only exist because there is still demand for animal products. You can’t stop those subsidies by going vegan and neither can I, but nothing will ever change if someone doesn’t try to oppose it. The opposition of groups of individuals to a system which seems like it will never change is all that has ever changed anything.

Supply and demand is oversimplified a lot of the time in vegan arguments. In a post-market world individuals may not be able to make a dent in profits because my abstinence will be offset in the market, because companies essentially own a monopoly on food, but that doesn’t mean we can’t make a difference. Profits are no longer dependent on demand, but units of production absolutely are, and we can make a difference in the units of production which are required to fulfil current demand.  When we consider the fact that with veganism, those units of production are sentient beings, that distinction is extremely important. Those suppliers may overproduce, but if demand consistently falls over time, doing so is no longer practicable or profitable in the long term. I have a post discussing supply and demand in detail here which I suggest you read.

Please rethink this position, just because we can’t do everything doesn’t mean we should do nothing, because what we do as vegans absolutely does make a difference, not just in demand but as visible symbols of the fact that we can live a lifestyle which seeks to exclude all exploitation of animals. The existence of capitalism is used by so many people as an excuse to be completely apathetic and not to resist, please don’t be one of those people. We can’t change the world by ourselves, but if everyone who said this exact thing went vegan we’d be a lot closer to doing just that. 

 Imagine if trade were the basis for society. You might call this “free trade” because it’s capitalist, but it doesn’t actually require the people in the trade to be free, so is it really free trade? In a capitalism based society, private slavery and privatized imperialism would be inevitable and so would the subversion of government by private agencies.

 There are means by which any group or individual, public or private, can directly influence electoral outcomes, government policy, and who’s individual or class interests are served by government. This could be done through lobbying, bribery, campaign funding, terrorism, assassination, threats, sending an agent of a company into politics to serve their special interest, and personal relations with politicians. With enough influence or power, the government can be subverted to serve special interests. The government could theoretically be used by large corporations to regulate away all their competition, insert tax loopholes and exceptions applicable to corporations and the super-rich, empower corporations to have more and more direct political power and if that failed on a national level they would move to international organizations to supersede national authority or merely organize their business dealings and manufacturing internationally to avoid having to abide by state constituted human rights or environmental regulations, and they could have the power and influence to get politicians to uplift necessary tarrifs and embargos that otherwise protect us from companies outsourcing jobs to slaves overseas.

 Corporations are a force of collectivist conformism, not individualism, freedom, reason, competition, meritocracy, or human rights. Corporations either do what is in the interest of profits at any ethical cost, or they fall behind their competition, loose tons of money from their many third-party investors who dont even work for the company, and get replaced in the market by a corporation who did the unethical, profitable thing. Corporations are a collectivist force, despite capitalism’s conceptual association with individualism. What is a clearer example of collectivism if not “corporations are people”? Corporations are a force of profit as much as theocracies are a force of religion. By virtue of human rights being a limitation to corporations, their profits, and competitive power, they have no interests in human rights and actually have a huge profit based interest in dismantling them. If one corporation doesnt lobby to subvert our rights, another will. They are a force with an interest in hijacking government, not one with interests in creating fair representation. Corporations will be a harbinger of tyranny, because it is in their nature.

The end result of corporations is not freer markets or smaller government, it’s corporate monopoly where small business cant survive, it’s the stomping of all competition by corporations buying off and sabotaging their competitors, it’s the regulation of markets by private corporate agents influencing government to sabotage competition for them, it’s corporations fabricating demand for their products by convincing politicians to agree to overstock on their products and services at taxpayer expense, it’s corporations deciding they’re a person, it’s corporations using international organizations to subvert and supersede national authority, it’s corporations eliminating tariffs meant to disincentivize the use of slave labor over seas, it’s the outsourcing of jobs to prisoners and away from law abiding citizens, it’s arbitrary prohibitions and government power put in place to imprison more people to profiteer on prisoners, it’s corporations creating exploitable labor by establishing trade with otherwise frail totalitarian states, it’s the control of all media and information by the super-rich who can enforce all their unique interests though mass propaganda, it’s corporations subverting human rights for profit wherever possible, it’s corporate establishment acting as a mafia on a national and global level. That’s the end result of corporate power: big government, monopoly, the elimination states’ concession to individual rights, and actual collectivism.

Imagine if the right to self determination was a basis for society. This would require capitalism, because people have the right to consent to trade things they own with others unimpeded. If you concede people have the right to self determination, me and my neighbor have the right to trade, period. Since we’re talking about human rights as a basis for society rather than trade, the requirement of liberty limits trade by the equal rights of others, so slavery and privatized imperialism is is out of the question. It’s not socialism, it’s not right wing capitalism, it’s liberal capitalism.

I am an advocate of liberalism, the individualist egalitarian philosophy (as opposed to socialist/collectivist egalitarian) positing individual justice (as opposed to social justice) through the universal right to self determination. I do not advocate trade as a basis for society, I advocate human rights as a basis for society, and that necessarily includes the right to trade, but that right is limited by the equal rights of others. It’s certainly not right wing capitalism, and it’s certainly not socialism, it’s liberal capitalism. I advocate free trade, but I do not see how corporations can ultimately fit into that system, nor these imperialist “”free trade agreements”” that enable corporations to hijack entire nations and salvage dying tyrant governments for the sake of exploiting slave labor at the expense of the jobs and wage power of people in free nations.

Why Monster High is Fantastic
  1. One of the 3 main characters is a WOC
  2. One of the 3 seconday characters is a WOC
  3. Encourages kids to embrace their individuality
  4. Hasn’t been marketed to just girls (some of their commercials have featured boys)
  5. Does not enforce heterosexuality, not every female doll comes with a pre-determined boyfriend (like barbie does)
  6. Encourages children to accept others regardless of their differences
  7. One of the character exhibits traits of autism and is still accepted and seen as very intellegent (I am an autisitc girl  who has worked with others that suffer from mental health so I know what the traits are)
  8. Many doll’s races are not specified as their skin is pink, green, etc. leaving them relatable to any child.

I could go on forever, Monster High is an amazing line of dolls that helps all girls and boys feel accepted while growing up, as most toys dont <3

I once had someone say to me:

“Tim, how could capitalism or any other class-based society possibly be genuinely individualistic? Those with class dominance impose their will on those below them, subjecting them to decisions that only reinforce the further entrenchment of hierarchy and subjugation of individual will. It’s only individualism for those who make it to the top of the pyramid; for the individuals who make up the rest, they must subdue their skills, powers, and opinions to the hegemony generated from the top.”

Aside from the gratuitous commie jargon, this individual completely misses the point of voluntary society. Only by allowing sovereign individuals to lay claim over all things can true individualism flourish. True, in the workplace/production process and in living quarters the majority of individuals take orders from the sovereign lordship individual owners, but it’s still VOLUNTARY. Those majority individuals can always leave, go somewhere else, and train themselves to overcome bodily necessity so that their individual will can escape the prison that is the human body. Individuals CAN be islands and they CAN overcome Maslow’s Hierarchy of Human Needs; if an individual can’t, they must resign themselves to voluntary hierarchical authority predicated on private property. Those are the only two options.