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  • in reply to: Module 2: Elections (Due Jul 26) #47089

    Michael Wile
    Participant

    The federal government can increase voter participation by increasing absentee ballots. Voting by mail has made it much easier for me to participate in voting while working in a very demanding job. Citizens can increase participation by telling all their friends not to forget to vote.

    in reply to: Module 1.2: Civic Engagement (Due Jul 19) #47088

    Michael Wile
    Participant

    I absolutely agree with Natalie that we need more doctors involved in hemophilia advocacy. Who better understands the needs of hemophiliacs than hemophiliacs themselves and their doctors. Physician advocates can certainly make great strides in laying out the basic necessities to maintain good health while living with hemophilia. In the ACA there were provisions made for free preventive services(example mammography)so that we could prevent higher costs down the line. There should be similar free preventive services in hemophilia. For example, hemophiliacs should get free joint sonography to prevent target joints from developing, free harvoni to prevent cirrhosis and hepatocellular carcinomas. These latter conditions inevitably lead to much more expensive liver transplants down the line.

    in reply to: Module 1.1: Civic Engagement (Due Jul 12) #47087

    Michael Wile
    Participant

    I agree with Natalie and Jen. Lack of time and resources certainly make this difficult. I am sure that I will be much more active during retirement from medical practice.

    in reply to: Module 4.3 State Government (Due June 28) #46917

    Michael Wile
    Participant

    Natalie wants to know more about the makeup of the PA assembly and the types of legislation they support. I would like this same information about CA. In particular, I want to know all the state laws that regulate health insurance companies and how we would go about creating new state legislation to further regulate them with respect to accumulator adjusters.

    in reply to: Module 4.2 State Government (Due June 21) #46659

    Michael Wile
    Participant

    Citizens can serve on boards and committees that make recommendations to elected officials. Citizens can introduce themselves to their legislators when he or she is campaigning, fund-raising or holding a 鈥渢own meeting.鈥 Find out about his or her interests and goals for the bleeding disorder community. Brush up on politics in your state, log on to the Internet. Most state legislative offices maintain Web sites. Citizens can offer their opinions by speaking out at legislative sessions and by writing letters to elected officials.

    in reply to: Module 4.1: State Government (Due June 7) #46658

    Michael Wile
    Participant

    States are a good place for innovation because they act as laboratories for the rest of the country to observe how a particular innovation affects the people living in that state. The west coast is known as the progressive coast because many innovations are first tried out here and the rest of the country watches to see if they will adopt the innovation.


    Michael Wile
    Participant

    I agree with Aiden that congressional hearings are a way for committee members to gather information from non-committee experts on pertinent issues related to the committee or subcommittee. I will be interested to hear about the unintended consequences of a single payer system.

    in reply to: Module 3.3 Checks & Balances (Due May 31) #46606

    Michael Wile
    Participant

    I am a watchdog by virtue of being on the HFA leadership committee. We are a special interest group looking out for people with bleeding disorders. We are watching the US Government it’s agencies, insurance companies, the pharmaceutical industry, blood banks, hospitals, researchers and other interest groups and stakeholders to make sure their interests align with our intersts. Our intersts include product safety, data collection, accessibility, affordability, and availability of the products that we require to live well and not just survive! When our interests don’t align, we take action by lobbying congress, suing, protesting, writing letters, voting, campaigning and raising funds. That’s how one becomes a watchdog.

    in reply to: Module 3.2: Checks & Balances (Due May 24) #46584

    Michael Wile
    Participant

    Unfortunatly our system of checks and balances works too well sometimes. My personal frustration with government gridlock is proof. Certainly, I would love to see more change on many issues, including making the USA a more habitable country for people living with chronic conditions. Unfortunately, too many checks and balances have prevented positive change and fortunately these same forces have prevented negative change.

    in reply to: Module 3:1: Checks & Balances (Due May 17) #46583

    Michael Wile
    Participant

    Executive orders an not necessarily an abuse of administrative powers but too many of them in a short time can be an abuse of power. If we look at the last few presidents.

    42 Bill Clinton. over 8 years
    43 George W. Bush over 8 years
    44 Barack Obama over 8 years
    45 Donald Trump. over 2 years

    This shows that president Trump has been issuing far more executive orders than his predecessors.


    Michael Wile
    Participant

    I agree with Natalie that Committee on Ways and Means and Subcommittee on Health is probably the most pertinent to the hemophilia community with respect to policy. I would expect the Committee on the Budget to be the most important with respect to funding. Some other relevant committees and subcommittees include: the Committee on Energy and Commerce/Subcommittee on Health, the Committee on Appropriations
    Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, Education and Related Agencies.


    Michael Wile
    Participant

    Only 10% of bills become laws because the legislative process is rigorous. By rigorous, I mean that the bill must be examined by legislative committees and subcommittees with various experts testifying for and against various aspects of the bill. There are usually amendments and compromises along the way to becoming a law. If the process were not rigorous, then we would have many bills passed that were not examined thoroughly and there would be many unintended consequences. After all we want good laws that improve our lives not laws that make things worse.


    Michael Wile
    Participant

    Why do you think it is important to stagger elections in the Senate?

    I agree with Natalie and Steve that staggering elections in the Senate allows for a continuation of key processes during election years. After all, elections are the means to an end not the objective. Sometimes it feels like the elections have become the end game and not the the means to the end which is legislating.

    3. Is it fair that each state gets 2 Senators regardless of the state鈥檚 population? Why or why not?
    I agree with Vivian concerning the more populated states would thwart those of the states with less population; however, I disagree that “If we are to be represented equally, then this is an effective means of achieving that equality.”
    The concept of having Congress split between the House which is based on population and the Senate which gives every state an equal voice regardless of population originated at a time when the US population was still small and the differences between state populations was not so vast. Today, the country has states such as California that have nearly 100 times more people than states such as Wyoming, giving each vote in the smallest states much more power than any single vote in the more populated states. If the most populated states were still only five times greater or even 10 times greater in size than the smallest states, then it would still make sense to continue with a senate that offers equal representation of each state regardless of size. However, with the dramatic differences in state populations that we now experience, something should be done to give the largest states, such as California, Texas, and New York a little more voice.


    Michael Wile
    Participant

    I agree with Natalie that congress has ceded power to the executive and judicial branches over the years. A recent examples of increased use of executive orders usurping congressional power was Donald Trump instituting tariffs on Chinese commerce. Despite most of the republican congress disagreeing with this executive order, Trump issued the executive order and it became law. Another example was when Donald Trump did not get his border wall, he declared a state of emergency, shut down the government and he managed to still get some of the money for the wall anyway. Congress has been giving up power to the judicial and executive branches because partisan politics has led to constant gridlock and inability to ever get a two thirds majority. Without a two thirds majority the president has veto power and then the case ends up in the judicial system.

    in reply to: Module 2.3 Branches of Government, Executive (March 29) #46191

    Michael Wile
    Participant

    Yes the Executive branch has grown too large since 2000. There has been an exponential rise in Presidential power ever since George Washington was elected in 1789. As time goes on, the slope of the curve increases such that it has been growing unbounded since 2000. The reasons for the growth of the Executive branch are many. To begin with American culture idolizes the individual and creates heroes which embolden Presidents and Governors. Once a President has set a precedent by issuing a new executive order then subsequent Presidents can reference back to this order, and not only repeat them, but add new ones. Furthermore, the size of the executive branch is also growing exponentially since 2000. For example the huge increase of executive agencies such as the Environmental Protection Agency, Federal Trade Commision, the Federal Reserve, workplace safety, national park management, college sports regulation etc. The heads of these agencies are appointed and can be fired by the President and they can make executive orders with the force of law. The sheer speed of American life favors having one decision maker. Emergencies and attacks are much quicker and they require faster responses. The growth of executive power has changed politics into war. Congress is so polarized that they are willing to write the President a blank check when the President is a member of their party. When they are from different parties and gridlock occurs, the President can issue executive orders and Congress files a lawsuit rather then directly arguing over the constitutionality of the executive order.

Viewing 15 posts - 1 through 15 (of 19 total)

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