IRS Chief’s 118 White House Visits Must Be Explained
As the Washington Examiner noted last weekend, ex-commissioner of the Internal Revenue Service Douglas Shulman went to the White House some 118 times in 2010 and 2011, while Steven Miller, the acting director who took over from Shulman last November, himself made numerous trips there, White House visitor logs show.
Business as usual for one of the most powerful arms of the federal government, you might think. Not so.
Mark Everson, who ran the IRS during most of the George W. Bush administration, from 2003 to 2007, apparently visited a single time, grousing that he felt like he had “moved to Siberia” because the tax collection agency was so out of the policy loop.
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Before, Ciampi charged $160 for an office visit with an existing patient facing one or more complicated health problems. Now, he charges $75.
Patients with an earache or strep throat can spend $300 at their local hospital emergency room, or promptly get an appointment at his office and pay $50, he said.
Ciampi collects payment at the end of the visit, freeing him of the time and costs associated with sending bills, he said.
That time is crucial to Ciampi. When his patients come to his office, they see him, not a physician’s assistant or a nurse practitioner, he said.
“If more doctors were able to do this, that would be real health care reform,” he said. “That’s when we’d see the cost of medicine truly go down.”
Asked on Tuesday night whether it was better to take action to mitigate the effects of climate change than to prevent it in the first place, he said: “The first thing to say is it does not represent any threat to the survival of the planet. None at all. The planet has survived much bigger changes than any climate change that is happening now.
He went on: “Although I think the evidence that the climate is changing is now overwhelming, the causes are not absolutely clear. There could be natural causes, natural phases that are taking place.”