Tuesday, March 07, 2017

I think I feel left out of these policies and decisions.

This is a huge issue for car makers. I can really see the return of the "Old Car."

New car dealers will literally have entire 2017 inventories sitting on the lot while the used care salesman across the street will be selling out and looking for more.

This is due to the driverless cars again. I have on occasion mentioned "Big Brother" and vulnerability of the driver-less system. Well, here it is.

Practice parallel parking, it is good for you. A sense of accomplishment. Truly.

March 7, 2017
By Craig Timberg, Ellen Nakashima and Elizabeth Dwoskin

The latest revelations (click here) about U.S. government’s powerful hacking tools potentially takes surveillance right into the homes and hip pockets of billions of users worldwide, showing how a remarkable variety of every day devices can be turned to spy on their owners.

Televisions, smartphones and Internet-connected vehicles are all vulnerable to CIA hacking, according to the Wikileaks documents released Tuesday. The capabilities described include recording the sounds, images and the private text messages of users, even when they use encrypted apps to communicate. Vehicles, meanwhile, are vulnerable to a remote hacker gaining control, allowing “nearly undetectable assassinations.”

In the case of a tool called “Weeping Angel” for attacking Samsung SmartTVs, Wikileaks wrote, “After infestation, Weeping Angel places the target TV in a 'Fake-Off' mode, so that the owner falsely believes the TV is off when it is on, In 'Fake-Off' mode the TV operates as a bug, recording conversations in the room and sending them over the Internet to a covert CIA server.”

The documents, which The Washington Post has not independently confirmed, list supposed tools for cracking into such widely popular devices as Apple’s iPhone or the Android smartphones whose operating system is made by Google, but there are marked differences from the 2013 revelations by the National Security Agency’s former contractor Edward Snowden....

The photo is from the CIA museum. I don't recall ever hearing about the CIA directorate 1, 2, 3 or 4. Anyone?

The sign reads, "Analysis Informing American Policy." Hm.

March 7, 3027
By Camila Domonoske

...In February 2016, (click here) then-CIA Director John Brennan spoke with NPR's Mary Louise Kelly about, in part, the agency's desire to expand its cybercapabilities.

"The technological changes are taking place at a warped speed," he said:

"So we here at CIA, we recently set up a fifth directorate for the first time in 50 years, a new directorate ... the directorate of digital innovation, so that we can understand all of the opportunities and challenges associated with that digital environment.

"I'm not a technological expert by any means, but I recognize that more and more human transactions and interactions take place in that cyber environment. And it profoundly affects all of our ways of life, and it affects the intelligence mission. So I want to make sure that for CIA to be able to fulfill its responsibilities in the years ahead, we understand what the pitfalls are, what the opportunities are, so that we are able to master that environment consistent with our authorities, so we can carry out our respective missions."

Mike Pompeo, the new head of the CIA under President Trump, said in a written questionnaire accompanying his confirmation hearing that he understood that the agency, "upon direction from the President and working in cooperation with other agencies when appropriate, has capabilities to perform a wide [array of] actions related to all forms of cybersecurity policies."...

Reading is fundamental.

The American Health Care Act has to have it's own webpage made easily accessible to the public just as the Affordable Care Act and Patient Protection Act (click here) did.

The link has a PDF and is AmericanHealthCareAct.pdf

Budget Reconciliation Legislative Recommendations Relating to Repeal and Replace of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act

"Affordable Care Act and Patient Protection Act" (click here)

Link: PLAW-111pub/148.pdf

It can also be found here: https://www.hhs.gov/healthcare/about-the-law/

November 9, 2016
By David Reich and Richard Kogan

Republican leaders (click here) may well use a special legislative process called “reconciliation” to advance their fiscal policy agenda in 2017.  Created by the Congressional Budget Act of 1974, reconciliation allows for expedited consideration of certain tax, spending, and debt limit legislation.  In the Senate, reconciliation bills aren’t subject to filibuster and the scope of amendments is limited, giving this process real advantages for enacting controversial budget and tax measures.  This paper addresses some frequently asked questions about reconciliation....

Reconciliation is a budget measure. RED IS THE ACA. Blue is the other one. The 21st Century Cures Act will appear in green.



Subtitle A—Patient Access to Public Health Programs


Subtitle A—Immediate Improvements in Health Care Coverage for All Americans

Republican legislation is somewhat simple and uses different numbers for their provisions. The ACA begins with Sec. 1001 under Subtitle A. So be aware that the Republican document begins with Sec. 101 and then goes on to quote the section of the ACA, ie; Sec. 101 cites (a) IN GENERAL - Subsection (b) of section 4002 of 7 as amended by section 5009 of the 21st Century Cures Act., is amended.

The "21st Century Cures Act" is not Obamacare/ACA. It is a free standing law. The "21st Century Cures Act" is cited by the Republicans and mixes it with Obamacare to write the changes to health care in the USA. 

December 7, 2016
By Mike DeBonis

...The 94 to 5 Senate vote (click here) Wednesday followed a 392 to 26 House vote last week. The bill, known as the 21st Century Cures Act, now heads to the desk of President Obama, who praised the bill Wednesday and said he would sign it.

The bill provides for $4.8 billion in new funding for the National Institutes of Health; of that, $1.8 billion is reserved for the “cancer moonshot” launched by Vice President Biden to accelerate research in that field. Another $1.6 billion is earmarked for brain diseases including Alzheimer’s. Also included are $500 million in new funding for the Food and Drug Administration and $1 billion in grants to help states deal with opioid abuse....

"21st Century Cures Act" (click here)

This is the same link: BILLS-114hr34enr.pdf



(a) IN GENERAL.—Subsection (b) of section 4002 of 7 the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (42 U.S.C. 300u–11) (click here), as amended by section 5009 of the 21st Century Cures Act, is amended—

Below is how the Affordable Care Act works.

(a) Purpose
It is the purpose of this section to establish a Prevention and Public Health Fund (referred to in this section as the “Fund”), to be administered through the Department of Health and Human Services, Office of the Secretary, to provide for expanded and sustained national investment in prevention and public health programs to improve health and help restrain the rate of growth in private and public sector health care costs.
(b) Funding
There are hereby authorized to be appropriated, and appropriated, to the Fund, out of any monies in the Treasury not otherwise appropriated—
(1) for fiscal year 2010, $500,000,000;
(2) for each of fiscal years 2012 through 2017, $1,000,000,000;
(3) for each of fiscal years 2018 and 2019, $1,250,000,000;
(4) for each of fiscal years 2020 and 2021, $1,500,000,000; and
(5) for fiscal year 2022, and each fiscal year thereafter, $2,000,000,000.
(c) Use of Fund
The Secretary shall transfer amounts in the Fund to accounts within the Department of Health and Human Services to increase funding, over the fiscal year 2008 level, for programs authorized by the Public Health Service Act [42 U.S.C. 201 et seq.], for prevention, wellness, and public health activities including prevention research, health screenings, and initiatives, such as the Community Transformation grant program, the Education and Outreach Campaign Regarding Preventive Benefits, and immunization programs.
(d) Transfer authority
The Committee on Appropriations of the Senate and the Committee on Appropriations of the House of Representatives may provide for the transfer of funds in the Fund to eligible activities under this section, subject to subsection (c).

March 7, 2017
By Mike DeBonis, Amy Goldstein and Kelsey Snell

...“Keep the ‘Cadillac’ tax in place? (click here) Keep Medicaid in place until 2020?” said Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio), a co-founder of the House Freedom Caucus. “We didn’t have Medicaid expansion in the bill we sent to President Obama, but we have it in the one we send to President Trump? That makes no sense to me.”...

Mr. Jordan states Medicaid will be in place until 2020. No doubt the funding set up by the ACA will remain in place, but, those monies were also for the Medicaid expansion. So that needs to be cleared up. But, if the monies from Obamacare/ACA remain in place then Medicaid must pick up the slack from the Medicaid Expansion. If Medicaid is not picking up the slack from Medicaid Expansion, then why is the funding in place for it?

...“Obamacare 2.0,” tweeted Rep. Justin Amash (R-Mich.), a libertarian who frequently breaks with GOP leadership....

There is a presidential election in 2020. Guess what will be on the front burner for that one?

WHERE IS THE MONEY GOING? The states should be demanding accountability to this change in the law. Evidently, it appears to consolidate Medicare and the Medicare Expansion. Slight of "Political" hand. Or is the money simply disappearing into the Republican budget?

End for today.