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Human Rights Watch: Iraqi Gays Tortured and Killed

Human Rights Watch: Iraqi Gays Tortured and Killed
Gay men in Iraq targeted in brutal campaign of torture and murder, human rights group says
By Kim Gamel, Associated Press Writer | ABCNews

Militiamen are torturing and killing gay Iraqi men with impunity in a systematic campaign that has spread from Baghdad to several other cities, a prominent human rights group said in a report.

Human Rights Watch called on the Iraqi government to act urgently to stop the abuses, warning that so-called social cleansing poses a new threat to security even as other violence recedes.

The bodies of several gay men were found in Baghdad's main Shiite district of Sadr City earlier this year with the Arabic words for "pervert" and "puppy" — considered derogatory terms for homosexuals in Iraq — written on their chests. Read more.

The Note: Pulling Plugs -- Public Option On Life Support, As Obama Tests Loyalties On His Left

The Note: Pulling Plugs -- Public option on life support, as Obama tests loyalties on his left
By Rick Klein | ABCNews The Note

Wait for it . . . “I don't think this bill is worth passing without a public option,” said former DNC chairman Howard Dean.

MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow: “Ultimately, if the president decides he’s going to go with a reform effort that doesn’t include a public option, what he will have done is spent a ton of political capital, riled up an incredibly angry right-wing base that’s been told this is a plot to kill Grandma, and he will have achieved something that doesn’t change health care very much and that doesn’t save us very much money and won’t do much for the American people.

May need to recast this line: “At this point, all that stands in the way of universal health care in America are the greed of the medical-industrial complex, the lies of the right-wing propaganda machine, and the gullibility of voters who believe those lies,” Paul Krugman writes in his New York Times column. Read more.

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Why We Need Health Care Reform

Why We Need Health Care Reform
By Barack Obama | NYTimes

Our nation is now engaged in a great debate about the future of health care in America. And over the past few weeks, much of the media attention has been focused on the loudest voices. What we haven’t heard are the voices of the millions upon millions of Americans who quietly struggle every day with a system that often works better for the health-insurance companies than it does for them.

These are people like Lori Hitchcock, whom I met in New Hampshire last week. Lori is currently self-employed and trying to start a business, but because she has hepatitis C, she cannot find an insurance company that will cover her. Another woman testified that an insurance company would not cover illnesses related to her internal organs because of an accident she had when she was 5 years old. A man lost his health coverage in the middle of chemotherapy because the insurance company discovered that he had gallstones, which he hadn’t known about when he applied for his policy. Because his treatment was delayed, he died.

I hear more and more stories like these every single day, and it is why we are acting so urgently to pass health-insurance reform this year. I don’t have to explain to the nearly 46 million Americans who don’t have health insurance how important this is. But it’s just as important for Americans who do have health insurance.

There are four main ways the reform we’re proposing will provide more stability and security to every American. Read more.

White House Appears Ready To Drop 'Public Option'

White House appears ready to drop 'public option'
By Philip Elliott, Associated Press | Yahoo! News

Bowing to Republican pressure, President Barack Obama's administration signaled on Sunday it is ready to abandon the idea of giving Americans the option of government-run insurance as part of a new health care system.

Facing mounting opposition to the overhaul, administration officials left open the chance for a compromise with Republicans that would include health insurance cooperatives instead of a government-run plan. Such a concession probably would enrage Obama's liberal supporters but could deliver a much-needed victory on a top domestic priority opposed by GOP lawmakers.

Officials from both political parties reached across the aisle in an effort to find compromises on proposals they left behind when they returned to their districts for an August recess. Obama had sought the government to run a health insurance organization to help cover the nation's almost 50 million uninsured, but he never made it a deal breaker in a broad set of ideas that has Republicans unified in opposition. Read more.

"Mad as Hell Doctors" Embark on Cross Country Care-A-Van to Demand Single-Payer from Congress - Join The Movement!

Hear practicing physicians tell why they support single-payer health care reform. Runs 40 minutes: consider it your workout time.

Where's the Care-A-Van? Follow the Docs - Where Would You Like To Meet Up?

"Mad as Hell Doctors" Embark on Cross Country Care-A-Van to Demand Single-Payer from Congress | Press Release

Frustrated with the health care 'options' coming out of Washington, D.C., six "Mad as Hell" Oregon physicians are taking an unprecedented road trip across America to lobby Congress for a single-payer health care system.

Called a "Care-A-Van," these road-tripping Oregon physicians will leave in a used motor home from Portland, Oregon on September 8th, inviting doctors and ordinary citizens from other states to join them on their twenty-city tour across the country. Join the Care-A-Van. Their journey will culminate in a D.C.-based event on September 30th, scheduled to take place on the steps of Congress. Demonstrating with the doctors will be thousands of fellow 'Mad as Hell' single-payer advocates, all adorned with the movement's new symbol - the white ribbon. Their demand: Single-Payer Now!  

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