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I don't think we need to worry about "Robot overlords". Once we hit the point where our machines are as smart as humans, they'll design their successors, and in a few short years they'll be so much smarter than us that they'll see no reason to keep us alive. Humanity will be relegated to a carefully managed population of "wild" humans spearing antelopes for bare survival, at best. (That's assuming the hyper-intelligent machines value biological diversity at all. They might just cover the planet with solar panels and dispense with the messy biosphere completely.)
If we want to drastically cut our oil consumption, we should build this: www.et3.com.
I wonder if the Obamacare debacle will get so bad that sometime in the year or so after the 2014 elections, when Republicans have taken over the Senate and enlarged their majority in the House, the Democrats will be so worried about 2016 that their best course of action would be to throw OBAMA under his own bus, claiming that the only reason they passed Obamacare is that they believed his lies, and VOTE WITH THE REPUBLICANS TO IMPEACH HIM. As utterly incompetent as a president Biden would be, it's hard to imagine him doing worse damage. And the fun part is that the dems would then have an incumbent running, who is an utter buffoon. Imagine the fun we'd have when Hillary primaries him, and loses anyway! I'll have to plan to stock up on popcorn.
If the insurance companies end up taking blame for this and having to re-instate a lot of these policies through 2014, they should retaliate by sending NEXT year's termination letters a little early - say, the first of September. They should all start out with "We're sorry, but the 1 year extension your president gave you is now over, so we're again FORCED to terminate your policy because of his stupid, shortsighted law. But worse, because the last minute change disrupted the stability of the insurance market, we have no choice but to raise rates even HIGHER, so good luck finding a replacement policy that's less than twice as expensive as your current one. If you're not happy about this, please let the democrats who did this to you know that on November 4th."
The insurance companies should simply say "We're sorry, but we don't trust the president anymore. He lied to everyone, and now wants us to believe that we should re-introduce plans that violate the law, but he won't prosecute us for doing so. Why should we believe that? The law is the law. We're going to follow it. If this needs to be changed, change the law".
That's what I thought. Which means the headline is wrong - 51% of employer-insured people won't lose their POLICIES - 51% of employer-insured people will have their current PLANS cancelled, and their employers will either have to select a different plan for them, or cancel them and pay the fine. While the latter will probably have a lot of appeal, it's unlikely that 100% of employers facing that decision will chose to do so.
I know what it means. I'm a small business owner, so I probably understand this stuff a LOT better than you. It's the word "plan" that's ambiguous. We're talking about specific insurance plans - being cancelled (discontinued) by the insurance companies because they don't meet the requirements to be grandfathered. as I understand it, that means I as a business owner will need to either FIND A DIFFERENT PLAN, or decide to no longer provide insurance to my employees. It does NOT mean I'll have no other option and be FORCED to stop providing insurance. Of course, what will probably happen is that the nearly $14K/year that it currently costs per family will go up dramatically, and we'll need to decide if it makes sense to keep providing that benefit at the much higher cost. But it doesn't automatically mean my employees will find themselves uninsured.
Possible error here. Does "51% of employer-sponsored plans will get canceled" mean that the PLANS will get cancelled, or that many employees will have their employers get those cancellation notices and react by dumping their coverage rather than finding a different (and likely much more expensive) plan? I'm not suggesting that this isn't a problem, but it might not be as huge of a problem (immediately, anyway) as implied.
While I haven't read ALL of the thousands (millions?) of comments appended to stories about this case, of the ones I have read, I've not seen anyone make the point that the reason this monster was able to kill 13 people before being shot himself was because it was a STUPID GUN FREE ZONE. If we want to minimize the risk of such things, wouldn't it make a lot more sense to pass a law that says all military personnel with officially issued weapons are required to carry them whenever they are on duty, and are authorized to shoot lunatics like this? At worst, he'd have been able to shoot one or two people before being killed. But more likely, he was probably sane enough that the realization that he'd have his head blown off seconds after firing his first shot would have prevented it in the first place.
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