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    US can't afford to care for 9/11 responders

    U.S. Can't Afford to Care for 9/11 Responders, GOP Reps Argue »
    By Michael McAuliff

    Ailing Sept. 11 responders don’t deserve a permanent, guaranteed program to ensure they get health care, and giving it to them could wreck the country, Republicans in Congress argued today.

    Calling the Sept. 11 Health and Compensation Act a new “entitlement program” like Medicare, members of the GOP on the House Energy and Commerce Committee argued the nation already has too much that it must pay for, and making the care of tens of thousands of 9/11 responders mandatory was too much of a burden.

    “By making this a new mandatory program, you jeopardize the financial health of the United States of America,” said Rep. Mike Rogers (R-Mich.).

    And they argued that the heroes of Sept. 11, 2001, were already being cared for, noting the $150 million the Obama recently requested for this year.

    Speaking to dozens of responders gathered in a Capitol Hill hearing chamber, Rep. John Shimkus (R-Ill.) argued that their demand for the federal government to help “would be just if we weren’t spending money already.”

    “In fact, there’s $131 million in the fund right now. The health care needs of first-time responders have been addressed,” Shimkus declared, referring to contracts that are being spent now and were delayed by the federal government.

    “There’s $131 million there that’s unspent,” said Rogers. “The President said 150. Please don’t make it a mandatory program I agree with the President.”

    The bill aims to set up a permanent fund to care for ailing responders at a cost estimated around $11 billion over three decades.

    Republicans want the responders to come back to Congress every year to make their case, which the legislators argued will help protect against fraud and waste.

    “If this issue is so credible based on the results of Sept. 11, we shouldn’t be afraid of going through the (budget) authorization process, and fight for the spending bill,” said Shimkus.

    Some also feared the measure might help people who are undeserving.

    “Some of the conditions that are covered under this legislation seemed unusually broad to me because we’re talking about asthma, sleep apnea, panic disorder, anxiety disorder, even substance abuse,” said Kentucky Republican Rep. Ed Whitfield. “It’s so broad that I think it’s going to cover a lot of things that may not be directly related to this incident.”

    Rep. Phil Gingrey (R-Ga.) argued New York was trying to dump its responsibility for caring for victims of the terrorist attacks on the feds.

    “Our support for them (responders) should not be a vehicle for cost-shifting,” he said, pointing to the lengthy approval process of the workers’ compensation system that generally helps people injured on the job.

    “We may be encouraging waste, fraud and abuse - abuse such as New York City vigorously challenging more and more of these claims that our 9/11 heroes need, pushing more and more of them onto the World Trade Center health fund for relief,” Gingrey argued.

    The whole debate over whether the program should be mandatory or an annual discretionary program misses the point, said Rep. Anthony Weiner, saying it was Congress’ obligation to help the people who answered the call almost nine years ago. And, he noted, the health fund could not be an endless and growing entitlement like Medicare.

    “There’s a finite number of people,” Weiner said. “That finite number of people is getting smaller and smaller every day because they’re dying.”

    New Yorkers in the crowd were not impressed with the opposition.

    “They always say the support us, but it’s all about cost,” said Jim Slevin, the vice presdent of the Uniformed Firefighters Association.

    And coming back year after year to make the argument punishes people who are sick from their heroic service, said William Romaka, the association’s sergeant at arms. “Coming back and forth every year is not easy for people who are ill,” Romaka said.

    Republicans were expected offer several amendments to the bill this afternoon, including restrictions on covering abortion and illegal immigrants
    Politics is like driving. To go forward select "D", to go backward select "R."

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    Its because they are caring for all the others folks in the world and those who shouldn't be in this country.

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    Angry

    Next time the crap hits the fan senators, don't call us. You're on you're own.

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    Isn't this a workmens compensation issue which is a state level issue?

    I know that those who worked in Washington with the Pentagon have a legitmate cause for Congress. I also see those federal employees who worked the site having a just cause to go to congress with. I just think this is something that NY and surrounding states (who sent responders) need to take of. It sounds more like NY state is not stepping up to the plate and therefore everyone is going after federal funds.

    Mind you - I am not stating that we should not look after those who were injured on the job - only that the people may be going after the wrong responsible party.

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    They already have $150 million at their disposal of which they have $131 million left. The responders are being cared for and without adding more government.

    We the people do not need any more unfunded mandates.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ScareCrow57 View Post
    They already have $150 million at their disposal of which they have $131 million left. The responders are being cared for and without adding more government.

    We the people do not need any more unfunded mandates.
    Maybe you can trade your health with one of them...I'm sure any of them would rather be healthy than have to be cared for.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ScareCrow57 View Post
    They already have $150 million at their disposal of which they have $131 million left. The responders are being cared for and without adding more government.

    We the people do not need any more unfunded mandates.
    I say those figures show that something else is going on here. Wait until they have run out of funds and do an audit. I mean its only fair to ask for more once the money is spent and see how it was spent to justify the applicaiton for more spending.

    And it should be a state issue.

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    Quote Originally Posted by babcusar5 View Post
    Maybe you can trade your health with one of them...I'm sure any of them would rather be healthy than have to be cared for.
    It has nothing to do with being healthy. The libtard who started this wants to say that Republicans won't take of the sick. To the contrary the funding is there to care for them.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jam24u View Post
    I say those figures show that something else is going on here. Wait until they have run out of funds and do an audit. I mean its only fair to ask for more once the money is spent and see how it was spent to justify the applicaiton for more spending.

    And it should be a state issue.
    The United States of America was attacked that day. That is like saying that it is a states issue to respond to the attack. I disagree that the State of NY, PA, and Washington DC should be solely responsible. Would you say that Hawaii would be responsible for the attack on Pearl Harbor?

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    Quote Originally Posted by ScareCrow57 View Post
    They already have $150 million at their disposal of which they have $131 million left. The responders are being cared for and without adding more government.

    We the people do not need any more unfunded mandates.

    and....

    The United States of America was attacked that day. That is like saying that it is a states issue to respond to the attack. I disagree that the State of NY, PA, and Washington DC should be solely responsible. Would you say that Hawaii would be responsible for the attack on Pearl Harbor?
    Contradiction in the same thread....

    What if GWB suddenly came down with the same sypmtiom as the 9/11 responders fom his 1 day visit at "the pile"?

    The neocons would jump on the bandwagon to pay for treatment like a dog on a porkchop.
    ‎"The education of a firefighter and the continued education of a firefighter is what makes "real" firefighters. Continuous skill development is the core of progressive firefighting. We learn by doing and doing it again and again, both on the training ground and the fireground."
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    Quote Originally Posted by ScareCrow57 View Post
    It has nothing to do with being healthy. The libtard who started this wants to say that Republicans won't take of the sick. To the contrary the funding is there to care for them.
    I think this statement alone clearly states their position.
    Ailing Sept. 11 responders don’t deserve a permanent, guaranteed program to ensure they get health care, and giving it to them could wreck the country, Republicans in Congress argued today.

    As for this having nothing to do with being healthy, it has all to do with health. One time lump sums are not necessarily sustainable funds.

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    Quote Originally Posted by babcusar5 View Post
    I think this statement alone clearly states their position.
    Ailing Sept. 11 responders don’t deserve a permanent, guaranteed program to ensure they get health care, and giving it to them could wreck the country, Republicans in Congress argued today.

    As for this having nothing to do with being healthy, it has all to do with health. One time lump sums are not necessarily sustainable funds.
    There are already numerous programs in place. In fact, why not give them Veterans status and they can go to the VA hospitals. We don't need more programs and mandates. Make use of the ones we have.

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    Quote Originally Posted by CaptainGonzo View Post
    Contradiction in the same thread....

    What if GWB suddenly came down with the same sypmtiom as the 9/11 responders fom his 1 day visit at "the pile"?

    The neocons would jump on the bandwagon to pay for treatment like a dog on a porkchop.
    Show your evidence.

    Neocon? You sucking up to SC with that religious bigot BS?

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    Quote Originally Posted by neiowa View Post
    Show your evidence.
    Evidence of what? That Scarecrow flip flops more than a Washington politician?
    Just read his posts....

    Since the former POTUS is in good health and enjoying life on his ranch in retirement, even an insipid moron would see that I was merely making a point of conjecture.

    Neocon? You sucking up to SC with that religious bigot BS?
    Religious bigot BS?
    If the word "Neocon" is "religiously bigoted", isn't the word "Libtard" just as "religiously bigoted"?
    Last edited by CaptainGonzo; 05-30-2010 at 11:24 PM.
    ‎"The education of a firefighter and the continued education of a firefighter is what makes "real" firefighters. Continuous skill development is the core of progressive firefighting. We learn by doing and doing it again and again, both on the training ground and the fireground."
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    Quote Originally Posted by CaptainGonzo View Post
    Contradiction in the same thread....

    What if GWB suddenly came down with the same sypmtiom as the 9/11 responders fom his 1 day visit at "the pile"?

    The neocons would jump on the bandwagon to pay for treatment like a dog on a porkchop.
    No contradiction. I said that the U.S. has set up $150 million to care for the responders and that it is a national issue not a states issue. Where is the contradiction?

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    There is more to this story 9/11 Health from the web site run by Representative Carolyn Maloney.

    In February 2009 I introduced, along with Reps. Jerrold Nadler (D-NY), Peter King(R-NY), and Michael McMahon (D-NY), H.R. 847, the James Zadroga 9/11 Health Compensation Act. The legislation has two sections, both of which have been cleared for the House floor. The health section (Title I) provides mandatory funding for the World Trade Center Health Programs, which provide medical monitoring and treatment to WTC responders and survivors who were exposed to toxins released at ground zero. The compensation section (Title II) would reopen the 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund (VCR) to provide fair compensation for economic losses and harm as an alternative to the current litigation system.
    And this shows the political nature of the bill

    Under the Bush Administration, the federal response to these health emergencies was inadequate and disappointing because of significant funding delays, a lack of organization, and failures to respond to the full degree necessary by the administration’s health agencies.
    Which makes one question the legitimacy of this. I recall on the day the towers fell seeing people running around breathing in the "stuff" in the air. You saw responders without SCBA (for whatever reason). It isn't rocket science to know that cloud of stuff was bad and that every precaution should have been taken in that area. In the days following the collapse responders were seen climbing on the pile and around the debris field without SCBA. I ask why no one was required to wear their SCBA when entering the hot zone? And perhaps there was a legitimate reason.

    But to clarify the spin put on this by the Daily news it isn't just about 9/11 responders. It is also about the millions of other New Yorkers exposed to the toxins as well. Got to love the liberal media.

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