Error message

Deprecated function: The each() function is deprecated. This message will be suppressed on further calls in menu_set_active_trail() (line 2405 of /home/scain/

Feed aggregator

Georgia pushes back their 1332 waiver

Balloon Juice - Tue, 07/14/2020 - 07:57

Georgia Health News reports that the state of Georgia is pushing back their application for a 1332 reinsurance waiver for the ACA individual market from January 1, 2021 to January 1, 2022:

Georgia has streamlined its proposal to the feds for a waiver on health insurance rules, and has postponed its launch till 2022.

State officials cited “the unanticipated impact of COVID-19 on the state and its residents’’ in the announcement last week about the changes.

ACA reinsurance is a means to lower gross, non-subsidized premiums. There are lots of flavors of reinsurance but they all fundamentally work by introducing some source of non-premium dollars into the pool of money that pays claims. This means for a given claim level, premiums can be lower. The injection of non-premium dollars into the claim paying pool results in lower federal premium tax credit subsidy spending. That increment of federal money is then passed through to the reinsurance program. Different states make different choices as to how they operationalize this concept, but the concept is the same. Georgia’s choices are aggressive and big in scope as well as inviting people to dance on the thin line between legally clever and fraud.

I am only surprised that Georgia is the only state delaying or pulling back on their 1332 reinsurance waiver applications as I wrote at the end of May, 2020:

States are experiencing a massive revenue shortfall due to the COVID pandemic. State budgets have core priorities of education, medical care, criminal justice and civil courts, transportation, infrastructure and recreation on public lands. State budgets also have short run fixed costs of pensions and debt upkeep as well. After those expenses, other add-ons can be included.

One of the add-ons that about a dozen states have chosen to spend money is Section 1332 reinsurance waivers for the ACA individual market

The waivers make insurance cheaper for individuals earning over 400% FPL and slightly more expensive for subsidized individuals who choose a plan that costs less than the benchmark plan. The marginal cost of insuring one extra person is fairly high.

States will have to make very hard choices in the next several weeks as updated revenue and expenditure projections come in. 1332 waivers can be either reduced or eliminated to free up the funding stream that went to the waiver. The freed up funds could be redirected to other, higher priority programs.

I am not surprised that Georgia is looking to delay a yet to be started program that would use very scarce general fund dollars in a year when there are very few general fund dollars. this is probably the least painful cut to make. I am slightly surprised that other states are not scaling back 1332 expenditures.

The post Georgia pushes back their 1332 waiver appeared first on Balloon Juice.

Categories: Politics

Cartoon: Postal service of the future

Daily Kos - Tue, 07/14/2020 - 07:50

If you are able, please consider joining the Sorensen Subscription Service!

Follow me on Twitter at @JenSorensen

Categories: Politics

Cheers and Jeers: Tuesday

Daily Kos - Tue, 07/14/2020 - 07:50


Lou Dobbs, a leading candidate for Trump's presidential fossil garden, has officially added the Supreme Court to his list of evil entities operating as tentacles of The Deep State. The following are also on his latest list of deep-state plotters trying to bring him down:

Clinton, Soros, Pelosi & Obama, Inc…congresswomen of color…his VCR that still blinks "12:00"…fact checkers…the parking police…blue states…the lid on the jar of mayonnaise he can't open…the mama who never hugged him…the dozens of people who flip him off while he's being driven to and from work…Sean Hannity's roughhousing…chemtrails (of course)…that voice in his head, the one that sounds like Emo Phillips…whoever’s been stealing the Sears catalog out of his mailbox since 1993…the pool guy who didn’t remove that dead moth like he asked him to...and, always at the top of the list: his natural hair color.

Updates will be posted as needed. Thank you.

Categories: Politics

Apple may release new Windows app soon

iDownloadBlog - Tue, 07/14/2020 - 07:49

Some of the possibilities include a version of iTunes for PCs built on Microsoft's modern Universal Windows Platform, as well as dedicated TV, Music and Podcasts apps.
Categories: Geek

Abbreviated pundit roundup: White House attacks Fauci instead of dealing with the pandemic

Daily Kos - Tue, 07/14/2020 - 07:31

We begin today’s roundup with reaction to the opposition research the White House has released attacking Dr. Anthony Fauci, who has been sidelined from the White House’s coronavirus response messaging because he dares to speak the truth about the pandemic raging across America. 

First up, Michael D'Antonio at CNN:

Note the difference between Fauci and Trump: One man, a dedicated public servant, offered his best analysis and, when new data emerged, corrected himself without hesitation so that lives might be saved. The other dug in to a don't-worry-about it position and has refused to budge as the passing months have led the US to become the leading global hotspot
Just as the pandemic has revealed Trump's tragic limitations, his abuse of Fauci confirms the President's deep character flaws. Fauci's lifelong devotion to science has been guided by a commitment to facts and a focus on helping others. Trump's lifelong devotion, on the other hand, has been to himself. This has led him to consistently deny facts that conflict with his ends, while he seeks credit for all that is good and blames others for everything that goes wrong. Along the way he keeps a mental scoresheet, noting who places Trump above all else, and who might value, say, human life more.
Categories: Politics

WHOA: It's So Close, Joe Biden Is Spending On Campaign Ads In Texas

Crooks and Liars - Tue, 07/14/2020 - 07:30

John Berman introduced Joe Biden's new ad that's airing in Texas, and explained why it's significant.

"CNN's Arlette Saenz joins us now with more. This is a real digital buy, Arlette, and it includes the state of Texas," Berman said.

"That's right, john. Joe Biden is wading into Texas with his first general election TV ad of this campaign, a spot that will focus on the coronavirus pandemic as that state has seen an uptick in covid-19 cases in recent weeks," she said.

"Now, I'm told this is part of a mid-six-figure buy in television and digital. and while the ad makes no direct mention of President Trump by name, Biden's advisers believe that the tone and message of this ad will present a stark contrast with the president's handling of the coronavirus pandemic. Now, here is the very first look of this new ad set to run in the Lonestar state."

read more

Categories: Politics

Keyboard shortcuts for Pages on Mac

iDownloadBlog - Tue, 07/14/2020 - 07:30

MacBook Pro keyboard -Pages keyboard shortcuts

Control the window, open documents, navigate within a document, and move through the sidebar with this list of common keyboard shortcuts for Pages.
Categories: Geek

Tuesday Morning Open Thread: Not Monday, At the Very Least

Balloon Juice - Tue, 07/14/2020 - 07:19

And nothing of value was lost…

The post Tuesday Morning Open Thread: Not Monday, At the Very Least appeared first on Balloon Juice.

Categories: Politics

Aperio is a lightweight, yet functional app launcher for iOS 13

iDownloadBlog - Tue, 07/14/2020 - 07:00

Aperio is yet another take on what a modern app launcher should be on jailbroken devices.
Categories: Geek

Daily Kos Radio is LIVE at 9 AM ET!

Daily Kos - Tue, 07/14/2020 - 07:00
Listen to our archived episodes: RadioPublic|LibSyn|YouTube Support the show: Patreon|PayPal: 1x or monthly|Square Cash

Hello, and happy Tuesday!

I forgot to tell you, I’m going trout fishing today! And I forgot to tell myself how long I’ll be trout fishing for! Or where I’ll be fishing!

Luckily, Joan McCarter is scheduled to stop by, and she’s from Idaho. Where they have trout. Which I have totally been planning for a very strongly long time to go fishing for in that place.

So I can ask her about what sort of trout gun I’ll need!

Listen right here at 9:00 AM ET! Even more ways to listen, live or by podcast, below the fold.

Categories: Politics

Ad Roundup: Traitor In A Mask Doesn't Own The American Flag

Crooks and Liars - Tue, 07/14/2020 - 06:30

Vote Vets has had some of the best and hardest-hitting ads of this election cycle. This one builds on a prior one where they just came out and called him the traitor he is. No group has more moral standing to hammer Trump than veterans, especially after the revelations about Putin's bounties and Trump's ongoing silence.

For a more patriotic feel and an actual pitch for Biden, there's this one from Don Winslow.

Categories: Politics

Ron DeSantis Heckled At Press Conference: 'You Are An Embarrassment!'

Crooks and Liars - Tue, 07/14/2020 - 06:30

Hard to seriously argue with anything the heckler said. As far as worst responses by Governors go, you'd be hard-pressed to choose a worse one than Florida's Ron DeSantis. Beyond inept, almost criminal malfeasance.

Video by the Washington Post.

Source: Miami Herald

A Miami-based activist interrupted a Monday press conference by Gov. Ron DeSantis and Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Gimenez, calling attention to government shortcomings that intensified the spread of COVID-19 in the state.

“Shame on you,” he said. “You are an embarrassment... We’re getting record-breaking cases every day, and you are doing nothing.”

The heckler who cried out at DeSantis’ press conference at Jackson Memorial Hospital was Thomas Kennedy, the Florida director of United We Dream, a national immigrant advocacy group.

Public health experts now consider Miami-Dade the new “epicenter” of the pandemic, attributing the surge in cases to the state reopening too early with few restrictions.

And here's Thomas Kennedy's tweet.

read more

Categories: Politics

Desert Quakes May Have Boosted Chances of 'Big One' Striking California

Slashdot - Tue, 07/14/2020 - 06:00
sciencehabit shares a report from Science Magazine: A pair of earthquakes that struck the remote California desert 1 year ago have raised the risk of 'the big one' hitting Southern California, according to a new study. The research finds that the 2019 Ridgecrest, California, quakes shifted underground stresses, making the San Andreas fault -- the state's longest and most dangerous fault -- three times more likely to rupture. U.S. Geological Survey estimates for the annual probability of an earthquake on this part of the San Andreas are about one-third of a percent -- equivalent to expecting a magnitude 7.8 every 300 years, on average. The new modeling triples that hazard to 1% per year -- or a big one every century. And if the Garlock actually does rupture, then the hazard really rises on the San Andreas, by a factor of 150: The probability of a big one rises to 50% in the following year. In principle, a Garlock earthquake could lead to rupture on the San Andreas in a matter of hours or days, much as the two Ridgecrest events came within a day or two. USGS regional scenarios anticipate 1,800 deaths and 50,000 injuries in the event of a major San Andreas earthquake. More than 3 million homes could be damaged, at a reconstruction cost of $289 billion. The study has been published in the Bulletin of the Seismological Society of America.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Categories: Geek

On The Road – way2blue – Hangar 7, Salzburg, Austria

Balloon Juice - Tue, 07/14/2020 - 05:00
We are back to Austria today, but this time we are in Hangar 7 at an airport in Salzburg, with planes, trains and automobiles.  (And a bit of poetic license.)  ~WaterGirl

I had been working on a photo submission to Alain when he died so unexpectedly.  (My laptop was stolen in December 2018, so I’ve been slowly reconstructing my photo collection.)

These photos are from a couple visits to Hangar 7 at the Salzburg Airport, Austria.  The hangar is a large glass bubble filled with Herr Red Bull’s toys (aka, Dietrich Mateschitz).  My husband & I make a point of riding bicycles to visit the hangar every time we’re in Salzburg since the exhibits change continually as does its art exhibit featuring young artists.

The collection always features a mix of beautifully restored airplanes, jeeps & motorcycles plus modern jets, heliocopters, race cars & motorcycles, and for a while, the capsule from Felix Baumgartner’s stratospheric jump over the New Mexico desert.  I didn’t keep track of the provenance of the various items as the plaques were in German, and mein Deutsch ist rudimentary.  Just enjoyed the pageantry.  And a cappuccino / Stiegl at the adjoining café.

Liebe Grüße

The post On The Road – way2blue – Hangar 7, Salzburg, Austria appeared first on Balloon Juice.

Categories: Politics

Enigma Code-Breaking Machine Rebuilt At Cambridge

Slashdot - Tue, 07/14/2020 - 03:00
Cambridge Engineering alumnus Hal Evans has built a fully-functioning replica of a 1930s Polish cyclometer -- an electromechanical cryptologic device that was designed to assist in the decryption of German Enigma ciphertext. The replica currently resides in King's College, Cambridge. TechXplore reports: Work on the hardware-based replica began in 2018, as part of Hal's fourth year Master's project under the supervision of King's College Fellow and Senior Tutor Dr. Tim Flack. The aim was to investigate further into cryptologist Marian Rejewski's cyclometer -- an early forerunner to Cambridge University mathematician Alan Turing's machine, known as the Bombe, which was used to crack the German Enigma code during the Second World War. Hal said he chose to work on the cyclometer as it was the very first machine used to assist the decryption effort. To his knowledge, the replica is the first fully-functioning hardware-based electromechanical cyclometer to exist since the years preceding the Second World War. The original machines would have been destroyed in 1939 to prevent them from falling into the hands of German invaders. Rejewski's cyclometer exploited the German's procedure at the time of double encipherment of the Enigma message key, and semi-automated the process for calculating what were known as 'characteristics' for every possible Enigma rotor starting position. There were more than 100,000 of these rotor starting positions, and they each needed their characteristic to be calculated and catalogued in a card index system. The cyclometer therefore eliminated the arduous task of calculating these characteristics by hand. The machine consisted of, in effect, two interlinked Enigma systems side-by-side -- one offset by three positions relative to the other -- and 26 lamps and switches to cover the alphabet. On operation, a certain number of bulbs illuminated, indicating the lengths of the characteristics. These were recorded for every single possible rotor starting position to create an immense look-up catalogue. Once this was completed, obtaining the daily Enigma rotor starting settings to decode messages was a simple matter of intercepting enough messages and referencing the catalogue, taking only a matter of minutes.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Categories: Geek

Grant Imahara, Host of 'MythBusters' and 'White Rabbit Project,' Dies At 49

Slashdot - Tue, 07/14/2020 - 01:17
Grant Imahara, an electrical engineer and roboticist who hosted the popular science show MythBusters and Netflix's White Rabbit Project, has died suddenly following a brain aneurysm. He was 49. From The Hollywood Reporter: An electrical engineer and roboticist by training, he joined Discovery's MythBusters in its third season, replacing Scottie Chapman and was with the show until 2014 when he left with with co-hosts Kari Byron and Tory Belleci. The trio would reunite in 2016 for Netflix's White Rabbit Project which lasted for one season. On MythBusters, Imahara used his technical expertise to design and build robots for the show and also operated the computers and electronics needed to test myths. Born in Los Angeles, Imahara studied electrical engineering at the University of Southern California (though he briefly had doubts and wanted to become a screenwriter) before combining the two passions and landing a post-graduation gig at Lucasfilm-associated THX labs. In his nine years at Lucasfilm, he worked for the company's THX and Industrial Light and Magic (ILM) divisions. In his years at ILM he became chief model maker specializing in animatronics and worked on George Lucas' Star Wars prequels, as well as The Matrix Reloaded, The Matrix Revolutions, Galaxy Quest, XXX: State of the Union, Van Helsing, The Lost World: Jurassic Park, A.I. Artificial Intelligence and Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines. [...] Imahara also starred in several episodes of the fan-made web series Star Trek Continues. He played Hikaru Sulu, a lieutenant, helmsman and third officer on the USS Enterprise, in the show that was an unofficial continuation of Star Trek: The Original Series. "We are heartbroken to hear this sad news about Grant. He was an important part of our Discovery family and a really wonderful man. Our thoughts and prayers go out to his family," a representative for Discovery said in a statement on Monday.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Categories: Geek

Newt Gingrich Had a Question For Me. I Had Answers For Him

Balloon Juice - Mon, 07/13/2020 - 23:02

Newt Gingrich Had a Question For Me. I Had Answers For Him 5Earlier this evening Newt Gingrich, or rather whomever he was paying to spam people’s cell phones with text messages, texted me.

Newt Gingrich Had a Question For Me. I Had Answers For Him 1 Newt Gingrich Had a Question For Me. I Had Answers For Him 2

Newt Gingrich Had a Question For Me. I Had Answers For Him 4

Newt, or whomever he paid to spam texts to people’s cell phones never responded to my reply.

Also, I checked with my county’s supervisor’s of elections office website tool for checking my voter registration. I’m registered and my standing order for a mail in ballot is both good until December 2022, but I am confirmed to receive my mail in ballot for the 2020 election. Of course, for some reason, Newt seems to think I’m still living in Pennsylvania based on the link he texted me. As Charlie Pierce likes to say: “Newt Gingrich, a stupid person’s idea of a smart person”.

Open thread!



The post Newt Gingrich Had a Question For Me. I Had Answers For Him appeared first on Balloon Juice.

Categories: Politics

On The Road After Dark – Albatrossity – Hovenweep and Chimney Rock

Balloon Juice - Mon, 07/13/2020 - 22:00

If not for the first photo, I might call this a study in blue from Albatrossity.  I think my favorite is the snowmelt pools reflecting the turquoise sky.  Probably not a surprise coming from someone who calls herself WaterGirl!

This is a two-part story about other ancient Puebloan sites that you might want to visit. The first is a place called Hovenweep; the second is a so-called Chacoan outlier site in southwestern Colorado.

The Ancestral Puebloan culture center in Chaco Canyon was not the only center of civilization in the southwestern US a millennia ago. There were others, including the cliff dwellings at Mesa Verde (which most folks have heard about and even visited) as well as some which are less well known. Hovenweep, which lies on the border between southwestern Colorado and Southeastern Utah, is one of those.

The canyonlands at Hovenweep were peopled by hunters and farmers for millennia, but in mid 9th century AD these people started construction of larger permanent structures. Sometime between AD 1200 and 1300, they built some of the most amazing buildings of the time, multi-story towers of stone. Some are round, some are square, and all are built in sandstone canyons on very irregular sites. Some are right on the canyon edge.

The function(s) of these structures are a mystery; speculation has centered on defense, storage, celestial observation, ceremony, or perhaps all of the above. We might never know, since, like the Chacoans, the people who built these edifices fled to the current Pueblos of the Rio Grande Valley of New Mexico and the Colorado River basin in Arizona, after a series of devastating droughts at the end of the 13th Century. The Hopi and Zuni People, as well as all the Pueblo people of the Rio Grande Valley, are thought to be the descendants of the ancient architects of Hovenweep, Mesa Verde, and Chaco.

The post On The Road After Dark – Albatrossity – Hovenweep and Chimney Rock appeared first on Balloon Juice.

Categories: Politics

Seth Meyers In-Law Sessions: Donald Trump Is the Last Person We Can Trust to Safely Reopen Schools

Little Green Footballs - Mon, 07/13/2020 - 21:39

Seth takes a closer look at President Trump trying to force students and teachers back to school without a plan to keep them safe.

Categories: Politics

2020 Is Just So Weird

Balloon Juice - Mon, 07/13/2020 - 20:47

I feel like I am always out of time, always busy, yet never accomplish anything. Am I the only one?

The post 2020 Is Just So Weird appeared first on Balloon Juice.

Categories: Politics