Local Perspectives on the Affordable Care Act, Historic Elections in Pakistan, Is American Liberalism Dead?

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Monday, May 13, 2013

Local Perspectives on the Affordable Care Act | Historic Election Marks Transition in Pakistan | Affordable Care Act: Listeners Respond |The Death of American Liberalism? | Department Audit Reveals I.R.S. Targeted Tea Party Groups | The Human Element of Health Care

Local Perspectives on the Affordable Care Act

According to a recent Kaiser Family Foundation survey, roughly half of American adults do not feel they have enough information to understand how the Affordable Care Act will affect their lives. As this major, complex system begins to take effect, we analyze what it's looking like on the ground - in hospitals, doctors’ offices, and state legislatures around the country. What do these changes look like, and where are the seams starting to show? 

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Selling the Affordable Care Act

The implementation of the Affordable Care Act is the responsibility of the Department of Health and Human Services. However, in a controversial move, the federal government has turned to private sources to help with the marketing and information campaign for the ACA. What is not in dispute, according to Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, is that the marketing and information campaign is an essential first step in getting the health care law up and running.

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Department Audit Reveals I.R.S. Targeted Tea Party Groups

We now know the I.R.S.'s special scrutiny of small-government groups applying for tax-exempt status went far beyond keyword hunts for organizations with “Tea Party” or “Patriot” in their names. It also included searches for applicants seeking to “make America a better place to live” or “criticize how the country is being run,” according to a draft audit by the inspector general.

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Historic Election Marks Transition in Pakistan

This weekend saw historic elections in Pakistan. Despite the violence in the run-up to the elections, which saw regular bomb blasts and the kidnapping of the son of a former Prime Minister, Saturday's vote marked the first time the country has transitioned from one democratically elected government to another. Arif Rafiq, the writer behind the Pakistan Policy Blog and president of Vizier Consulting, LLC, describes what kind of coalition might emerge from this vote.


The Death of American Liberalism?

One of the most traditionally lefty states in the U.S., Minnesota is home to some of America’s biggest liberal household names, including Hubert H. Humphrey, Walter Mondale, Paul Wellstone, and Al Franken. But more recently, we’ve seen decidedly un-liberal people rising through the political ranks in Minnesota like Michelle Bachman and Tim Pawlenty. Is Minnesota a bellwether of the rest of American liberalism as a whole? Ralph Brauer, native Minnesotan and author of the "Strange Death of Liberal America," offers his thoughts.

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