The August 22, 2009 Recess Rally at recessrally.com: Is This Right-Wing Anti-ObamaCare Rant Really Necessary!?

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ATLANTA— The “birthers,” tea-party goers, “extremists,” and otherwise “anti-American” members of the political right are up to it again, proposing to stage a Recess Rally to protest socialized healthcare at noon on August 22nd at the district offices of each member of the House of Representatives.  Are these endless rallies and rants necessary and helpful?

In a word: absolutely!

And I recommend that you go and participate.

The current version of health care reform being foisted upon us is growing increasingly unpopular.  While some form of serious reform is clearly needed, the version being pushed by the true “fringe political elements” of American politics (the left-wing of the Democratic Party) is not what this country needs and it will destroy health care as we know and enjoy it in this country.

We may have 40+ million uninsured, we spend trillions on health care annually and our life expectancy rates are average relative to other industrialized nations.  These are problems.  But these are also no excuse to add trillions more to our spending, while simultaneously diminishing the quality and availability of our care for working-class Americans, as this bill will do.

The left-wing of this country is trying desparately to cast the growing majorities of people that are very uncomfortable with this legislation as fringe and extremist to divert attention away from the bill’s increasing unpopularity. That is not working and will not work.

Rally’s like the August 22nd rally will remind House members who they represent. This rally could bring about serious and needed change to the legislation currently under consideration.

There is real opportunity this year for good and much needed health care reform.

We just need to show our Representatives what that reform should (and should not) look like.

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About Stephen VanNuys
Stephen Van Nuys is a happily married CPA who works for a large accounting firm and resides in Atlanta, Georgia. He is a Christian and an avid follower of politics and current events. He is also a big-time baseball fan. Stephen and his wife are runners, having completed multiple 10k’s and half-marathons between them. They place importance on being environmentally conscious and actively serving others through their church and other outlets. Mr. Van Nuys’ political leanings are socially conservative and economically libertarian. He may express his perspectives on current events strongly, but he welcomes disagreement, particularly where others believe his missives to be ill-informed or just plain wrong! He enjoys good debate and discussion and is writing here as much to express his perspectives as he is to learn about others.

111 Responses to The August 22, 2009 Recess Rally at recessrally.com: Is This Right-Wing Anti-ObamaCare Rant Really Necessary!?

  1. Peter Cutler says:

    It is wonderful to see the public begin to exercise their right to free speech. It is long past time to alert the pampered political class that they owe everything that they so enjoy to the taxpayers that they are overpaid to represent and that their function is to serve us …. not the other way around.

    There are some excellent ideas available on reducing the cost of health insurance – Safeway, Inc., for instance, provides incentives for those who stop smoking, reduce their chlorestoral, lose weight and attain other preventative goals.

    So many people are agreeing with the point that if the Administration cannot efficiently manage “Cash for Clunkers”, then how in the world can they handle something as complex as health care.

    The Lefties have never had a problem with mounting carefully choreographed demonstrations to advance their statist agendas, but don’t they panic when the citizen fed up with taxes and special treatment for their sycophants begin to voive their objections.

    • Spot on, Peter. Good post. I agree it is a great thing to see the moderates and conservatives in this country speaking up and making their voice heard. We’ve got a guy in office that is way over-interpretting his mandate. This healthcare bill is a disaster in waiting. Glad people are getting out there and making their opinions known.

    • Bob del Valle says:

      I do not smoke, I am healthy, I take care of my health, I was a Young Republican in college, but Watergate soured me.

      I just retired at 58, I now will have to pay 26% of my income for health care.

      Wake up! The health ins. industry is not your pal, they are here to make money and lots of it. A substantial part of your premiums do not go to your healthcare providers, they go to pay for the multimillion dollar salaries and bonuses that upper management earn of YOUR HARD EARNED DOLLARS! Take a look at these company’s annual reports and then think about it.

      There must be a public option to corral the greedy health insurance industry. For all of you who are so anti-option, when you reach 65 put your wallet where your mouth is and reject Medicare. I wager that not too many of you will do that.

      Living near the Canadian border and having relatives that live in the UK & the continent, they are quite content with their healthcare. Canadians pay just under 8% for their healthcare. How many Canadians do you see hopping over the border to get health care? How many US citizens go to Mexico, Costa Rica, hell, even India for affordable medical treatment, many.

      • Sorry. Just can’t get into this ill-informed, poor logic populism of “companies make money therefore they are evil” or, “company leaders make money they don’t deserve.”

        The point of a business is to earn a profit. Every single person on this planet works to earn a profit. That’s how people get “hard earned dollars.” Those earned dollars are profit from your business of selling your labor. Simply because some one has earned more than me doesn’t make them evil, theifs, criminal, greedy, or whatever.

      • Bob – I don’t think the health insurance industry is my pal. But I also don’t think the federal government would be either. Single-payer healthcare may “work” in Canada and the UK, but that is all they have known for many decades. As Suzanne likes to point out, we already have a big chunk of socialized medicine in this country (something like 1/2 of all health care dollars are already paid by the government, I think I’ve heard). But we still have 10s of millions on private insurance. If we move towards a system where those people are pushed off private insurance into public health plans, I guarantee you they will know the difference right off the bat. And they won’t like it. Bickering with your health insurance company is painful, but at least you can threaten to take your business elsewhere. Imagine the day when dealing with health care claims is like going to the Deparment of Motor Vehicles: take a number and wait in an inordinantly long line. We don’t have 1/2 of the wait times of Canada and the UK for basic medical care, b/c our current system has enough financial incentives for suppliers to increase the quality and availability of care. Take those incentives away by having the government low ball prices for an even broader swath of the population and you’ll see the difference.

        In atlanta, we have one public hospital that I’m aware of. From everything I hear, the place is a complete nightmare. Local government is constantly having to bail it out b/c it’s on the brink of bankruptcy. No one would “choose” to go there- everyone chooses the dozens of private hospitals in the area. While I recognize this bill before us does not call for the nationalization of our hospitals, I also recognize that once you get significant majorities of Americans on the government dole for health care, then reimbursement rates to hospitals are going to take and they may well have to be nationalized or taken over by state or local governments to have enough capital to remain afloat. If not that, they will have to operate on extremely lean budgets, which means fewer doctors and fewer beds (lower quality and availability of care). No longer will they be able to charge higher fees to people with private insurance to cover their losses.

        Anyway – it will take a little bit of time for this all to work its way through the system. My uneducated guess is 4 to 5 years.

        Or maybe not, Cash for Clunkers went insolvent in a week- perhaps “cheap government insurance” will be so cheap people will flee to it like madmen and we’ll see the impact within a year or so.

        All this to say, if they pass a bill with a strong public option, then people will notice the difference and they will be miserable. And it will be different than the UK and Canada b/c Americans have had the experience of high quality private care that will be steadily taken away from them.

  2. The fringe also likes to point to life expectancy ratings as a red-flag of poor health care. Absolute Hog-Wash. What everyone should look at is the survival ratings of known health issues per country. The United States of America is top notch at solving these health issues. The rest of the socialized world, not so much.

    Life expectancy rates can be traced back to life-style choices and habits. If the goal of this plan is to improve life expectancy rates, this plan will have to dictate the life styles of each American. A utopia in the fringe left. A nightmare for everyone who dreams of liberty and freedom.

    • Agreed. The left has confused the issue in terms of “quality of care.” They’re backfilling with this argument b/c they can’t stand that companies and individuals exist that make profits off of medical-related goods and services (particularly when those companies and individuals do such a bang-up job). With that hatred of free enterprise in mind, they then have to backfill with ill-constructed arguments and comparisons to try and “prove” we have it bad over here when we really don’t- not as bad as they say. We need reform- no one disputes that. But not the one they offer.

    • Suzanne says:

      You need to get your facts straight….we are way down on the list for life expectancy, infant deaths, etc among industrialized nations…look these facts up before you speak…….

      • You need to read what was actually written. The point isn’t life expectancy. It’s survival rates of ill-nesses that health care covers. The US is way up top on those rates.

      • James says:

        You’re absolutely correct, Suzanne. It doesn’t hold up as an argument when the facts completely disqualify that position.

      • Right. It doesn’t hold up when you look at the facts. Such as this one:

        “a new study that shows the U.S., Japan, and France recorded the highest survival rates among 31 nations for four types of cancer … Survival in the USA is high on a global scale ”
        Michel Coleman, MD, a professor of epidemiology and vital statistics at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine and the study’s lead author

        The discussion of health care should be directed at the survival rates of illnesses, as that is what health care impacts. Discusion of life expectancy is a moot point and irrelevant to health insurance coverage or quality of health care.

  3. Alan says:

    Response to Peter Cutler: You are very confused. It’s the “pampered class” — multi-millionaires and multi-billionaires — who are pushing these fake “grass roots” movements that you are falling for. Check who’s behind these operations. A public option will help you (unless you are one of those multi-m(B)illionaires) and hurt (but only a little) the “pampered class”. Use your head.

    • Please, Alan. Come-on, you really believe this stuff? When I read posts like this it makes me realize how truly out-of-touch the left can be…

      Middle America doesn’t like this stuff. Try getting out sometime and living amongst the people.

      This healthcare plan is polling terribly, with now well over 50% of Americans opposed to it. There aren’t that many millionairres and billionairres in this country.

      Plus, we’ve had some really good open debate over the last few months about this plan, with both the left and the right getting their message out. As more information gets out, filtered through all variety of sources, people are increasingly appalled at the proposals from the left.

      And rightfully so! Proposals to create a remorseless central bureaucracy to determine whether people receive certain types of care in their old age; to issue edicts to doctors and hospitals on how to prescribe care and with the authority to punish for non-compliance; a “public option” that will destroy consumer choice in the health care industry.

      This stuff is terrible. It is about seizing control from average Americans (not just millionaires and billionaires) and putting it into the hands of politicians and bureaucrats. What a nightmare.

      And btw, my guess is that the millionaires and billionaires will always be able to afford their own care. What do they have to lose in all of this?

      Plus, sounds like the Obama Administration is going to have to levy taxes on the middle class to pay for this all- and in the midst of the worst recession since the 1930′s.

      Use your head. ;)

      • Suzanne says:

        I hate to break it to you Stephen, but you are the one that is out of touch. The big insurance companies and drug companies are spreading lies and using the typical Republican “scare tactics” to get the American people afraid. The Public Option is exactly what YOU and I are paying for our Senators and Representatives to have. Why is it good enough for them and not for us? Have you ever asked them that????? A Public Option is a CONSUMER CHOICE. No one will be “seizing control from average Americans”. If you are happy with what you have, keep it. But for those of us who are paying $700 per person in my family PER MONTH, I would like to be able to choose something that I could afford and not have to have a second job to pay for. Heaven forbid if my husband loses his job and we have NONE! Get your facts straight before you go spouting off.

      • “the typical Republican “scare tactics” to get the American people afraid”

        LOL!

        Scare tactics run both ways… Like for instance, lines like this: “[if the bill] doesn’t pass all our premiums will go SKY HIGH!!”

      • $700 a month per person!?! You want choice? Click on this: https://www.gohealthinsurance.com/

        You’ll find many, many options that cost far less than that.

    • James says:

      As noted above: “Spot On”, Alan. No doubt these carefully orchestrated “grass roots” movements around the country is going to embarrass the GOP and the lobbyist string pullers behind all of it.

      Transparency is the new catch phrase, and this mocked up protest is nothing but a sham.

      Trying to paint it as “We The People” isn’t working, it’s quite pathetic.

      But that’s just my opinion. Oh wait, Alan feels the same way so I guess I can say it the opinion of “We The People”….

      Two voices from Middle America…if we need another vote there’ll be another coming up shortly.

      • James – you’re wrong. This stuff isn’t “orchestrated” grass roots movements. What does that even mean? The reality is that there are millions of lower middle class Americans that have no faith in government to provide them with efficient, quality health care and they’ll gladly take the streets and protest. Having grown up among them, I know.

      • James says:

        It’s sponsored by lobbyist. That’s what I mean by orchestrated, Stephen. If this is grass roots, why aren’t any of these people educated with the facts of the legislation. They’re all just screaming jibberish instead of contributing to any progressive reform debate.
        This Us Against Them mentality, using factless disruption is not working in anyone’s favor. This is BAD press for any political movement. The Dem’s had the Hippies, and now the Republican Party has gone to White Trailer Park “Trash” becoming the movement against Health Insurance Reform….?

        Where are the intellectual arguments? All we’re seeing is a bunch of misinformed, “Obama is an Arab” retards being the thrust of the movement. If you want this Grass Roots fantasy for populist support referral, good luck with that. These people don’t represent the majority of American voters, by any means.

      • James – that’s what’s lost in the reporting on this debate. Intelligent members of the right have been arguing for years about the best ways to reform health care, without limiting choice (which is precisely what a “strong” public option will do).

        Tort reform to impose reasonable limits on malpractice liabilities, allowing insurance to be bought across state lines, ending the tax subsidy which links health insurance to employment to create a truly open market where everyone (employed or not) is on the same playing field, increasing the retirement age for MediCare, etc. being among them. But unfortunately, these don’t have quite the populist ring to them that the left’s “damn the private insurers” arguments do.

      • “why aren’t any of these people educated with the facts of the legislation. They’re all just screaming jibberish instead of contributing to any progressive reform debate.”

        Ugh. Some of these people are dolts. They don’t help anyone on any side of the debate. Ran into these people at anti-Bush rallies and anti-war rallies. Ask them a question and they have no logical response of any kind.

        I guess the difference is, I took that as a passionate, ill-informed, rally-goer. Not as proof of a grand conspiracy, or orchestration on false premises.

  4. Darren says:

    I agree 100% Alan,do you think any of these people will turn down there social security or not apply for medicare when they get that old.I just canceled my insurance with United Health Care after they raised my insurance premium 100% over 6 months and recorded a second quarter profit increase of 155%.

    • Darren – they better apply for social security and medicare fast, b/c those things are going bankrupt! Over $50 trillion in unfunded obligations, last I heard. If we thought the credit crisis of 2008 was bad, wait till the year Washington finally addresses the mess that is our national debt (both on and off balance sheet). Taxes will go through the roof- or all of these entitlements will be cancelled. Will be a big, disappointing day for the left, I’ll bet.

      Curious who you went with after United Health Care? Good thing you had a choice to go with someone else. ;)

  5. Suzanne says:

    Alan and Darren, I’m with you…..these are big insurance companies and big money Republicans that are “staging” these rallies. How many of the older people that I saw in the crowds are willing to give up their “socialized Medicare”????? Do these people even “get it”….they are being duped by the Huge healthcare corporations. If this bill (which by the way isn’t even drafted yet, so who really knows what is in it), doesn’t pass all our premiums will go SKY HIGH and the insurance companies will make a TON of money. And of course all those people at the rally will still have their Medicare, but we middle class boomers and our children will not be able to afford any coverage. Do these people have brains that actually work?????????

    • Ah, come on, Suzanne. These aren’t “staged” rallies. These are real, tangible, grass-roots uprisings. The right said the same thing about all the anti-war rallies in 2003 and 2004. By the time 2006 rolled around, the Republicans were being voted out of office. I expect much of the same if the left ignores the true grassroots nature of these uprisings and forces through a partisan bill with no Republican backing. My guess is it will kill Obama’s presidency.

      No way premiums will be jacked “sky high” if this bill doesn’t go through.

      Insurance companies don’t have incentive to do this. Plus, with over 1,300 of them, that would require remarkable and unprecedented collusion. In addition, didn’t they just agree a month ago to make some fundamental changes on insuring people with pre-existing conditions, etc.? Private insurance companies have every incentive right now to get their act straight.

      Medical costs can’t keep increasing forever without recourse, there is gonig to be an equilibrium reached. If we could get tort reform, de-couple insurance from employment by ending the inherent tax subsidies, and put the ball back in the court of the consumer to monitor costs and make intelligent on what kind of care they seek for themselves, we’ll watch true, ground-up health reform occur.

      There are plenty of good proposals that don’t involve remorseless government bureaucracy and “public options” that will kill consumer choice.

      • Suzanne says:

        It has been proven and admitted to by some Republicans that they are staged. They have pictures of them bringing people in on buses.
        The Republicans have no plan to bring to the table. They just want it to stay as status quo so their big corporations can continue to make money and donate to their campaigns.
        There are not that many insurance companies….check who is a subsidiary of who and you will be surprised at how few there really are.
        You and I are paying for our Senators and Representatives to have a Public Option, so why can’t we have the same thing. They can go to a “marketplace” and choose the one that fits their needs, that’s all we are asking to be able to do.
        I work in the healthcare field, so know a bit about how the big ins. companies work……..

      • Suzanne – I’d love to see these pictures and buses. Didn’t Hillary Clinton bus some folks in to her political rallies a year or more ago? They may bus folks into one or a couple of these things, who knows? But they don’t do it in all 50 states, all the time. These are real people taking to the streets who don’t want this stuff.

        While I agree senators and representatives surely get quality health care, I do not for a minute believe that the same quality will be provided to 100 million people.

        I’ve worked with health care providers as clients in the past and I’ve seen the low-ball methods of MediCare and MediCaid- how they consistently underpay and slow pay for services. This kills cash flows for small practicioners- so much so, that many refuse to see clients on these programs (or at least limit the number that they do). Suppose we create a new “MediCare” that covers 100 million people? You think people are going to line up to go to med school to get those kinds of fees? Do you think investors will invest in hospitals that will take those fees? How about drug makers, who currently spend billions before ever bringing a product to market- think they’ll care to be as innovative in the future? No. So we’ll replace these players with the government- which will then be financed by taxes taken from you and me. Less supply, more demand- more taxes. Sounds like a recipe for disaster.

  6. Ah-hahahaha! This is funny stuff. “Big money Republicans” Genius! It’s all good and well when Billionaires back liberal agendas. They are the saviors! George Soros is there to help. It’s great he spends billions backing liberal rallies and agendas. But those evil natured Billionaires that back the opposite point of view are just evil. Anyone who disagrees has a non-functioning brain. The intellect in such an argument is irrefutable.

    • Suzanne says:

      It’s not just that they are big money, it’s that they are big money “liars” that are scaring the American people…..

      • Liars!? That is a strong charge. It would need some actual proof. Something along the lines of: “I do not want to move the government into ownership of a car company.” Followed by: “I will now move the government into ownership of a car company.” Or, “I am 100% behind a single-payer-system.” Followed by: “I never was for a single-payer-system.”

      • Suzanne – I keep coming back to this. You guys aren’t quite understanding that it isn’t “scare tactics” that are causing the polls to go down. People don’t want this bill. Plain and simple. They haven’t for over 50 years. The country didn’t take a giant, “progressive” leap forward with Obama’s election. He and the left have way overreached here and these rallies are in response to this.

        The AMA, the AARP, Big Pharma, and other players have all come out with varying levels of support for health care reform, which is unprecedented.

        …and yet Americans aren’t buying it.

  7. “They have pictures of them bringing people in on buses.”

    HAHAHA! These pictures can be shown of all types of rallies. Politicians back all types of causes. If a rally is out there backing a cause a politician is sympothetic too, said politician will work to increase the size and impact of the rally. And the pictures are apparently only damning when it is of a rally you disagree with…. :roll:

    • Suzanne says:

      These people have been paid….again get your facts straight before you open your mouth……..FOLLOW THE MONEY AND YOU WILL FIND OUT!!!!

  8. Suzanne says:

    73 % of the people do want this bill…..the lies are that “they are going to tell granny how to die”….”they are going to pay for sex change operations”…..”they are going to put a gov’t bureaucrat between me and my docor” (which now we have an insurance bureaucrat between us)….etc…..
    I give up…..if it doesn’t pass, I just hope you are close to the age that you can get your “socialized, nationalized Medicare”………..

    • No plans to take MediCare. My plan is to work extremely hard so one day, after this bill passes, I might be able to be one of the priviledged elite that will be able to afford private care in my old age. (I fully expect to be joined by the wealthier members and supporters of the Democratic Party in this).

      I don’t know what poll you are reading that says 73% of people want this bill. Maybe you should visit sites other than HuffingtonPost.

      Everything I’m reading (Gallup, Rasmussen, Zogby, Pew, etc.) seems to show majorities opposed to the bill.

  9. “73 % of the people do want this bill”

    Please provide a link for this poll result. I follow them quite regularlly and have yet to see one showing such overwhelming support for it. Nor heard of one reported on NPR or the likes showing that 3/4 of the nation want the bill currently under consideration to be passed as is.

    • Suzanne says:

      It was either Pew or Quinnipac I believe…i’m not going to waste my time looking it up for you…..It was all over the news and in the papers about 2 weeks ago. I don’t know how you could have missed it…..It was even brought out in one of the White House News conferences…..

      • Alright- time for some polls:

        RASSMUSSEN

        More People Like their Current Care:

        Forty-eight percent (48%) of U.S. voters now rate the U.S. health care system as good or excellent. The latest Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey shows that just 19% rate it as poor. These figures reflect a significant increase in support for the health care system over the past few months.

        The new polling also shows that 80% of those with insurance rate their own coverage as good or excellent.

        Most people don’t want new taxes to pay for health care.

        Just 28% say they are willing to pay higher taxes so that all Americans can have health insurance. Sixty percent (60%) are opposed. Those figures are little changed since May.

        But they also think the bill will lead to higher taxes (thus the “orchestrated grass roots rallies”)

        Seventy-eight percent (78%) say it’s likely the passage of health care reform will lead to higher taxes for the middle class.

        Voters are split on the current bill.

        Polling last week showed that 47% of voters favor the health care reform plan working its way through Congress while 49% are opposed.

        However, those who oppose it show more intensity: Just 25% Strongly Favor the legislation while 41% are Strongly Opposed.

        FROM:

        http://www.rasmussenreports.com/public_content/politics/current_events/healthcare/august_2009/confidence_in_u_s_health_care_system_has_grown_in_recent_months

        PEW

        By a 44% to 38% margin, more Americans generally oppose than favor the health care proposals now before Congress. Opposition rises to 56% among people who say they have heard a lot about legislation to overhaul the health care system.

        http://people-press.org/report/532/obamas-ratings-slide

        ZOGBY

        By 52 percent to 40 percent, voters say they are against the healthcare bill introduced July 14 to the House of Representatives, a new Zogby International poll reports.

        http://www.newsmax.com/insidecover/healthcare_poll/2009/07/16/236697.html

        QUINNIPAC

        Quinnipiac University poll released on Wednesday found 52 percent of voters disapprove of Obama’s handling of healthcare while 39 percent approve.

        http://in.reuters.com/article/marketsNewsUS/idINN0525961220090805

  10. “FOLLOW THE MONEY AND YOU WILL FIND OUT”

    HAHAHAHA! Funny stuff. Saw similar arguments for the beginnings of the anti-war rallies. It’s quite a generalization. I can guarantee 100% of those showing up are not being paid to be there.

    But then from a different perspective, perhaps Mr. Obama should be happy people are finding work!

  11. James says:

    Well, I guess we’ll all just have to go to these meetings and get the truth in our own perspectives. I hold all my Reps accountable, as I’m sure the rest of you do.

    After seeing the bashing my Congressman took at the last town hall “discussion”…I’m not happy with him not having an opportunity to discuss it with my family.

    Good luck to you all.

    • James – we appreciate you dropping by.

      And Suzanne, Daren, Alan- we appreciate you all as well.

      This issue clearly is divisive and it is obvious we don’t agree on the solution.

      My biggest point in coming at this to debate is to let others know that people on the right do want reform, we do recognize the problems in our health care system, we just don’t agree with the path currently being taken. I have no desire to maintain the status quo.

      I would actually love it if Obama truly took a bipartisan approach on this and reached out to the right more. I think he is making an enormous mistake by sticking to his guns and only listening to the left-wing of his party. It is clearly killing any bipartisan appeal he may have had.

  12. According to a poll from a month ago: “More than eight in 10 said they are satisfied with the quality of care they now receive and relatively content with their own current expenses”

    80% are happy with what they got.

  13. Alan says:

    I really feel sorry for you, Stephen. You’re like the Scarecrow in “The Wizard of Oz”: “If I only had a brain!”

    • Alan – you’ll have to explain? Please explain why the current health care proposal will be good for middle class Americans.

      Administration officials are already saying it will increase their taxes, Barney Frank is saying the public option is intended to crush private insurance (reducing choice), Obama is wanting a government agency to pick and choose whether doctors prescribe the “red” or “blue” pill, and it is obvious that this bill will suck most of the financial incentives out of the system that incentivize suppliers to supply health care. This thing is a disaster in waiting. It will impact so many people so quickly (and negatively) my prediction is that after 5 years, people will loathe it. They will notice a difference b/w private and public health care.

      Btw, you guys are going to have to show me the links to the stats that prove the US is at the bottom of the heap in terms of survival rates for major types of illnesses, including cancer, etc. I’d be interested in seeing them. Not talking “life expactancy” in general- but am talking about survival rates for illnesses, which is a better indicator of the quality of care we are receiving.

  14. Alan says:

    I know that won’t change your “mind”; I don’t expect that. I don’t need to change your “mind”. 70+% of American’s support a public option, so I’ve got plenty of support. The problem is the “Blue Cross” Dems in Congress.

    I, too, am against the current bills being considered — because they don’t go far enough. That explains the “lack of support” you cite in your responses.

  15. Ottilia says:

    Something needs to be done about health care in the US, that’s for sure.

    I hope you all read about Wise County, Virginia where recently doctors, dentists, nurses, etc. volunteered a long weekend to care for the people living there without any medical care. Tents were set up with beds and equipment for 3 days of caring. People started lining up the evening before Friday morning opening. Over 1500 were treated.

    Now people worry about medical care being rationed. Well, folks, if you don’t think medical care is rationed at present, think again. If you have money and know where to go (Johns Hopkins, Anderson in Texas, Mayo Clinic in Minnesota for example), you get the best care in the world.

    If you’re struggling with paying your rent and utilities and you do not have health insurance, where do you get money to visit a doctor?

    Socialized medicine isn’t the answer, that I know, but there must be a way whereby we can combine the best of the present US health care with what is truly needed. Are there any great minds out there who can come up with a plan?

  16. Ottilia – thanks for dropping by and showing an open mind. You are right- there are problems in health care. And great minds have proposed alternatives that don’t involve socialized medicine. Milton Friedman (great 20th century economist) proposed some very simple solutions that would put us in the right direction, including decoupling insurance from employment. Part of the problem with rising costs is that those of us with health insurance rarely if ever see the actual bill for our procedures. We have no incentive to monitor costs. But bring that bill a little closer to home for the 85% of Americans with insurance, and you will see them instantly demanding lower costs for care- and a mad scramble among providers to get efficient and give them those lower costs. We’ve got to pull the inherent federal subsidies that are already in the system out and watch changes occur (while still having choice).

    • Suzanne says:

      We already have socialized medicine….Medicare, Medicaid, and the VA….

      • You got me Suzanne. You are right, we do. And those are pretty bad programs to boot! Rampant fraud, doctors and practicioners that won’t take patients who participate in those programs b/c they consistently underpay, unfunded obligations totaling in the 10s of trillions of dollars.

        If we hold those 3 programs up as the ideal for what socialized medicine should look like in this country, then we’re doomed!!

      • Suzanne says:

        That’s why included in Obama’s plan is total reform of these plans. The VA is the best we have and most people say that it is very good.
        They have already found a lot of fraud in the Medicare system and have brought people to trial. This started happening shortly after Obama took office. There was a big sting not too long ago that was all over the news.

      • Medicare Fraud “stings” have been going on for a while. Even prior to Obama. The problem these people have found is, due to the lack of administration of the plan, fraud is rampant. You can catch one guy, but ten more pop up.

  17. Alan says:

    By the way … you want a poll to convince you?

    “The GOP-leaning polling outfit Resurgent Republic is out with a new survey that tests conservative messaging on health care and recommends that Republicans talk about “budgetary impact, taxes and the threat to private coverage” to scuttle Democratic plans. But the internals aren’t that rosy for the Republican position, either. The poll asks this question:

    Do you think it is the federal government’s responsibility to provide health care coverage to all Americans, to provide health care coverage only to those who cannot afford it on their own, or not provide health care coverage to anyone and leave it up to individuals to provide their own health care coverage?

    Thirty-one percent of people said the government should provide “coverage for all” and 35 percent said “coverage for those who can’t afford it.” Only 29 percent said health care coverage should be entirely left to individuals. Among Republicans, 46 percent chose one of the first two options to 51 percent who chose the laissez-faire option.” [Source: http://washingtonindependent.com/48140/gop-poll-yes-people-want-a-public-option%5D

    That’s 66% of REPUBLICANS who support some sort of public option. Add in independents and democrats and it doesn’t take a genius to see why Suzanne and others quote the 70+% figure.

    You’re in a distinct minority.

    • Suzanne says:

      Thank you Alan and AMEN!!!!!!!!

    • “That’s 66% of REPUBLICANS who support some sort of public option…why Suzanne and others quote the 70+% figure.”

      Ohhh… When I read Suzzane’s sentence stating: “73 % of the people do want this bill” I must have mistaken her meaning. I thought she was saying 3/4 of the nation want this bill. I didn’t realize she was saying a poll shows 3/4 of the nation is open to a public option of “some sort.” There is a massive, massive difference between the two. Certainly you can acknowledge that much.

      • Alan says:

        I’ll let Suzanne speak for herself. But I agree with you that there’s a big difference between current bills under consideration and the desire for a public option. Let’s give the American people what they want: a public option. Note the word “option”. I probably won’t choose it. I’m retired and have a plan from my former employer that is fully paid for with relatively small co-pays. But I’m among the fortunate. I know many who are not so fortunate. They can’t afford or can’t get private insurance. A public option will help them immensely. If I have to bear a tax burden for that, I will. Look around you and don’t be so selfish, like Stephen, who says: “My plan is to work extremely hard so one day, after this bill passes, I might be able to be one of the priviledged elite that will be able to afford private care in my old age.”

      • Man – we’re churning out hits. I’ve got to pull away, but did want to clarify something. Alan is right- I did sound selfish with my comment. What I meant by it was not intended to be selfish, but to make the point that once the public option bullies most private insurers out of the market, choice will no longer be available to lower and middle class Americans. Choice will then be institutionally preserved for the upper classes. It will be a sad reality.

        Anyway – sorry, wanted to clarify I did not intend to be selfish. I’d love to help people afford quality health care. I just don’t think we’re going to get that through offloading people onto a public plan that will inevitably result in rationing.

        This time I’m signing off for real. Thanks again.

      • Fair enough Alan. Perhaps lots of people don’t have a problem with “some sort” of public option.

        This missive was discussing the rallies concerning this current bill as it is written. Obviously people disagree with the way it is being constructed. Perhaps they all want a public option of some sort, but this current “sort” is not the kind they want. Hence the rallies and the desire to “lobby” a representative to make ones voice heard

  18. INteresting poll. But that is a conceptual matter. I’m glad to be in a group of 29% over and against 2 other gropus of 31% and 35%. That’s fair.

    But what is more important is when concept becomes reality and we start explaining to people that the government can’t fund the promises it is already making under MediCare and Social Security- they are in debt to the tune of $50 trillion in off-balance sheet unfunded obligations. MediCare will basically be insolvent by the end of the next decade.

    If we tack on a new, “public option” that covers over 100 million more Americans, it may meet 35% of people’s conception of what is the right and proper role of government, but it will sure cause a ton of heartburn among the 60% of Americans that don’t want to pay higher taxes so everyone can have health care.

    I’m afraid its time liberals learned that Americans are practical people. The “liberal ideal” sounds well and good on paper, but it doesn’t quite work out well in the pratical world. We’d doom economic growth in this country if we levied the kind of taxes necessary to pay all of these entitlements.

    My guess is that the public option will be canned by the time this bill passes (which I believe some form of it ultimately will). I don’t think politicians are foolish enough to go for this thing.

    • Suzanne says:

      Again, GET YOUR FACTS STRAIGHT!!!! The Public Option only means that you will have the OPTION to pick which plan you want. It doesn’t mean that the gov’t will pay for it. There will be a gov’t plan included with all the others, but you will STILL HAVE TO PAY FOR IT!!!! Why can’t you folks get it straight???????????????
      What you are talking about is a SINGLE PAYER PLAN, which is like “socialized medicine” where everyone is covered no matter what. In Denmark everyone is covered and they pay around 50% in taxes for healthcare, police, libraries, etc. but their minimum wage is $19.00+…….
      People don’t pay a dime for any type of health care!!!!!

      • “People don’t pay a dime for any type of health care!!!!!”

        Nothing is free. People pay well over a dime, even in Demark, for healthcare. The difference is, the cost is included in massive tax rates.

      • Suzanne says:

        Oh come on, you know what I meant….they don’t pay any type of copay. They walk out of the hospital with a baby and don’t have to pay anything…..again of course they pay higher taxes, but AGAIN their minimum wage is over $19/hour………….so our minimum wage is what $7+/hour and we have to pay taxes on that….lets see if they pay 50% of their income in taxes, that leaves 9.50/hr that is tax free……

      • Denmark has a population of under 10 million people, I believe. We’ve got to compare apples to apples. We’ve gone around the issue of Denmark on this blog, believe you me. :)

        http://americanmissive.com/2009/04/22/does-americas-economic-crisis-mean-we-should-embrace-european-style-social-democracy-a-consideration-of-the-denmark-example/

        “…but you will STILL HAVE TO PAY FOR IT!!!!”

        It will be subsidized. No way this thing operates at a profit or even break-even. It will be run at a loss. Given that private insurers can’t possibly run at a loss, they will be at a severe competitive disadvantage. The public option will underprice them, forcing businesses to offload their employees onto the “cheaper” public plan. It will be like cash for clunkers on steroids. Won’t be too many years before a 100 million or more Americans are on this thing. They will both be paying a fee for it and paying higher taxes to subsidize. In addition to the prospect of higher interest rates driven by higher US borrowing rates to finance the inevitable long-term deficits as well as inflation driven by all this out of control monetarism by the Federal Reserve.

        Ugh. Gotta get to bed. Tired. Enjoying the debate though.

        I’m calling a double-dip recession, begining in late 2010/early 2011. Obama’s going to be a one-termer. The bill is coming home late next year for all his borrowing and spending and we are all gonig to suffer for it.

      • Danish Krones are worth less than $0.20 in US dollars. The cost of goods and services are higher in Denmark than in the US. Pushing up the pay of everyone doesn’t make everyone rich. It just means the cost of everything will go up in kind leveling the perceived gains resulting in the same exact buying power.

  19. Alright guys. This has been a fun debate- this is precisely why we started this blog long ago. I’ve got to head to bed.

    But don’t let up. If you guys have some more perspectives for me, I’d love to hear them. I genuinely do enjoy the debate.

    Just so you know, there was a time in my life where I supported the status quo and argued against everyone who said there was something wrong with American healthcare. All my liberal friends finally convinced me that I was wrong- there is something wrong with American healthcare: it’s too expensive for too many people. But I have never been convinced of the liberal solution to this problem- public health care. the solution is overly simplistic and doesn’t properly get at the economic issues of scarcity and incentives. Further, it doesn’t take into account the gross overextension of the federal budget due to current unfunded entitlements. We can’t keep promising pie in the sky forever. Someday, the bill is going to come home. And the economic fallout is going to be much worse than 2008, I can just about guarantee it. If you thought the “collapse of capitalism” was bad last fall, wait till the retiring populations in Europe, Japan and the United States begin to push their respective governments to the brink of insolvency due to unfunded entitlements…

  20. Ottilia says:

    I’m an oldtimer – anecdote coming.

    When we had our daughters (in ’54 & ’56) the doctor charged about $300 which included delivery and pre- and post natal care. If we paid him before delivery he’d deduct $50.

    In 1961 we had a son and we asked for the pre-payment rebate. Well, the doc was sorry, but he couldn’t give us a rebate because the AMA had banned such arrangements. Did that make any sense?

    No insurance company was involved. Doc wrote a bill, we paid, got the bill stamped “PAID” and that was the end of it.

    • Ottilia: Ran into many a folk who don’t purchase health insurance. They choose to pay cash in advance. They work it out with the doctor, get the service, pay the agreed upon amount and go about their life.

  21. Ottilia – preach it Ottilia! That’s what I’m talking about. You and the doctor, working together to arrange a reasonable price with no middle-man interference. That’s what we need to get back to. We have that in every service industry, but for some reason we don’t want that in health care. We want someone else to pay the bills. And we want them cheap. And we want our doctors and service providers to provide increasingly more services for increasingly less pay. It makes no sense. We need to get back to the basics of health care. I want us to move in that direction by ending the federal tax subisidy for employer provided health care….

  22. Good stuff!!

    Frankly the people against this bill are not necessarily against obama, nor are they necessarily helping people who dont want to help themselves and the few among those who may actually deserve help. This is not about people making bad decisions, there genes making worse decisions, or whatever the reason might be that you are having to inconvenience yourself to remain covered.

    This is really about the most basic thing, choices! Its our independence! I am amongst a number of others who have worked hard, through school, work everything, I have never taken a penny I dint deserve, and I have given up many luxuries, to have the luxury not to care! If you need help, ask for choices not request dictatorship! This is a blow to our fundamental rights, its a blow to democracy, but most of all it is a blow to all the people in history who have fought, bleed and died for the simple freedom to choose!

    But of course I can understand the feelings and situation of the other side..
    Let me summarize it as if it were me!
    Dont charge me $700 a month, I would rather pay it in taxes, I dont mind having to get a license to watch TV (denmark) to pay double the rents for everything! But from what I have heard isnt that money really going to just put the nation into debt, that’s cool as long as it does not show any red on my account! so what if my great-grand children will live in a completely broke country!

    And lets say I do have to pay 60% tax like denmark, all I will need to do if ask the govt to increase the minimum wage by 250%!! And whats that about inflation and all those stupid problems created by wall street! that’s not my responsibility! I dont care that the cost of living in denmark is the third highest in the world and the only city in US that comes in the top 30 is New York! Hell isnt the whole population of the US living in NYC!!

    And, again so what ‘Ottilia’ and the likes of ‘em can negotiate a better deal without a middle man! We will show him Canada, where if I will need an MRI, I can get it as soon as 7-8 months for now, unless of course its an emergence in which case I will get it in 3 months, so what that only 24% there can see a general physician in 24 hours of needing one! I am sure I will be lucky enough not to pop-it before the MRI or get gangrene on the wound I could not get checked because I did not have risk of a concussion!

    ——————

    back to reality!!

    People cut the Cr*p! Demand more choices not fewer choices!! I would be just as annoyed if a republican was pushing for this unfortunate reform!! Speak up to conserve the independence our forefathers died trying to get!

    Cheers!!

    • Thanks for dropping by FTOE. We got a live wire on this post. Good healthy debate. Right on with your remarks, though.

      I think getting 10s of milions more Americans on the pubilc dole for health care would be a major step in the wrong direction. In fact, I think the left believes that it would be the final boon for a more liberal America. Once most people are taking their health care from the government, they’ll be more open to taking other things from the government- and the left will win the day.

      We will steadily relinquish all of our freedoms to politicians. What a debacle.

      But at least the good news is this march towards ever increasing government in our lives can’t go on forever. The gravity of unfunded entitlements and burgeoning national debt will bring this march back to earth one day. There is a better way, which be a move towards increasingly more privatization, including in regards to the services MediCare provides and in private Social Security accounts. But we’re evidently too far ahead of the curve. That stuff will only be discussed with real earnestness once the average person wakes up to the fact that our country is already at the beginnings of bankruptcy. We’re like the Romans. Our politicians always borrowing from abroad to pay for shows at the colliseum to appease the masses back home. Just like them, it will lead to fiscal ruin. That’s the end game for big government. Lethargic economic performance and fiscal imbalance at the government level.

      Sorry for the meandering rant.

  23. To all: all partisan and ideological bickering aside, I would highly recommend the book I.O.U.S.A. It is a nonpartisan book written on a very readable level about the current fiscal imbalance in our government’s finances. I think it should be a must read for concerned citizens of any political stripe. And if you hate Republicans, you’ll love this book b/c it lays into George W. Bush for driving up the national debt so much (curious what the authors think of Obama, b/c Obama is like 3 times worse than Bush in this regard- but that’s neither here nor there).

    At any rate, the book does a great job of explaining the nature of the entitlement problem we have with MediCare and Social Security and the debt problem with our national debt. It gives some ridiculous stats on how much of our national budget will be consumed by interest payments alone to finance these programs sometime in the next 15 years.

    Anyway – it jarred me and made me realize we can’t keep promising entitlements and cutting taxes forever. Somewhere, we have to say enough is enough, we can’t pay for this.

    That’s the other big part of this health care reform debate in my mind: we can’t pay for this program. Dougles Elmendorf of the Congressional Budget Office says the current bill does nothing to bend the health care cost curve downward- in fact, , it will bend it upward and lead to even greater fiscal imbalance in the future. We will pay an enormous price for this, if the bill goes through as is.

    So that’s the reason to protest at the Recess Rally and other venues: to let our politicians know they can’t keep borrowing and spending to buy votes with new entitlements. We the voters understand that the bill will one day come due.

  24. BREAKING POLL NEWS:

    President Barack Obama’s approval rating is falling amid concerns about the U.S. economy and his push to revamp the U.S. health-care system, a Quinnipiac University poll shows.

    Exactly half of the registered voters surveyed from July 27 to Aug. 3 by Quinnipiac said they approve of the job Obama is doing, compared with 42 percent who disapprove. That’s down from 57 percent approval and 33 percent disapproval in a poll taken in late June, according to results released today.

    Americans are upset about rising unemployment and worried that health-care plans making their way through Congress will add to the U.S. budget deficit, said Peter Brown, assistant director of the Hamden, Connecticut-based polling institute. The combination has helped drive down the president’s ratings.

    http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601087&sid=akA7XABFTuSs

    I’m glad people are concerned about the deficit. It gives me hope that people out there are getting it: that while a “public option” sounds nice in the realm of theory, it is grossly expensive and will be damaging to our economy in so many ways…

  25. BaldManMoody says:

    Anyone in this debate:

    Please identify in the Constitution anywhere that it promises healthcare to anyone, that it promises Social Security, welfare and so forth.

    I have a clue for you it doesn’t!

    So it isn’t whether we should even be considering a “public option” – it is whether the government is even Constitutionally able to do it.

    That ship sailed long ago with Medicare, Medicaid, and every other entitlement – all without an Amendment.

    It is inconvenient to have an Amendment to actually expand the scope of our governing document to allow the US Government do what it wishes to do. Instead they just ignore it.

    Wake up people!!! (Republicans and Democrats), neither of these groups really want the Government to come into scope with what the governing document of the nation outlines. And it would actually be too close to representative Democracy if you followed protocol and had Amendments voted on by referendum of the populace or by your state legislature.

    This debate should have been dead out of the water long time ago, if the government hadn’t been allowed to ever get into the business of healthcare, police force (FBI, Homeland Security), and every other form of BS bureacracy that has come since then.

    That’s it from me.

    • Please identify in the Constitution anywhere that it promises healthcare to anyone, that it promises Social Security, welfare and so forth.

      Baldman, it doesn’t! It is in the UN’s Universal Declaration of Rights which according to the left wing traitors to the United States is a superior document which supersedes our Bill of Rights. Just see article 25…

      Everyone has the right to a standard of living adequate for the health and well-being of himself and of his family, including food, clothing, housing and medical care and necessary social services, and the right to security in the event of unemployment, sickness, disability, widowhood, old age or other lack of livelihood in circumstances beyond his control.

      Obama and his lackeys are trying to place us further under the power of government. The hard working successful man/woman is being made a slave. All in the name of “fair” profit, equality, and various other lies.

      • BaldManMoody says:

        Right on Freedom Thinker. I believe the Constitution actually says something about not being able to make a treaty that makes our nation’s law subservient to that of another organization. I argue that this basically makes NATO and the UN unconstitutional which you (and others) may not like, but it sure seems to be what the Founding Fathers were trying to counteract.

      • BaldManMoody says:

        Oh, I do also know Article 25 you threw in from the UN. What horseshit, huh?

        I love how everyone refers to every industrialized country in the world offers healthcare to its citizens.

        They do it and it generally flounders. I am personally of the opinion that if we are going to do this and go for it – we should do it the right way and make all doctors work for the federal government just like the VA or just go ahead and have socialized medicine for all.

        The only thing that we are doing here is polluting market economic environments with someone that is trying to be a loss leader.

        It is like me trying to sell a computer and being willing to take a loss of $20 per computer on hopes that I will make it up in volume, when the only thing that I will do is have a more voluminous loss!!!!

        It is the bastardization of the free market that ruins all of these ideas. Just as TARP is a bastardization of free market principles, in order to save “capitalism”, they have to somehow inject public funds. It is soft socialism! And the Republicans kicked it off and the Democrats are going to take it even further.

    • There’s also no explicit “right to privacy” in the constitution…

      Just sayin’

      • BaldManMoody says:

        Yup, you are correct there too. It is “implied” right. But it has some ability to get there from the slippery slope argument couched on first amendment rights and what not.

        However, if you asked my definite opinion – I would say, “Yes, there is no right to privacy in the Constitution.”

        Granted, to paraphrase George Carlin – you don’t really have rights when they can be taken away by the very government that is set in power to protect them. I saw it on Comedy Central last week and I can’t remember the exact quote. Basically, he was saying that if you can impose martial law and restrict all rights – you have no rights.

        Makes sense to me.

  26. Bob del Valle says:

    Sure, a private healthcare system is everyone’s ideal, however, how long can we the people continue to pay the ever increasing premiums? How about when you do get a serious illness and your buddy the insurance carrier finds a loophole to dump you? This is not hyperbole, this is fact.

    Stephen, it is imperative that there be a public healthcare option, that the subscribers pay for, not free. This is the great fear of the health insurance industry and they will do whatever it takes to derail any public offering. If the public plan is a bust, then people can go back to their private insurance. If the plan works, then either the private companies will be happy with a reasonable profit (I am all for making a profit) or they will go away. The way the system works now, there is no competition, if you go and try to buy private insurance, one company’s premium is very like the others. Also, the reason that public hospitals in general are so lousy is because the uninsured go there to receive medical care that with regular doctor visits could be prevented or mitigated. And yes, your taxes and mine are paying for their now more expensive treatment.

    I worked for Safeco Insurance as a Small Group Medical Underwriter. Talk about Big Brother. Your medical history is available in sources such as the Medical Information Bureau. Anytime you use a medical service and it was paid by insurance, your name in the database.

    My job was to only accept the healthy ones and decline anyone that needed medical services. If an agent kept sending groups that were “substandard”, I would have to call and reiterate what was a good prospect. After countless denials and seeing the misery that families were going through trying to get coverage for an ill family member, I quit. It was a depressing and one of the worst jobs I ever held.

    TennesseePaul, just think if my healthcare cost was a reasonable percentage of my income, say 10%, that is 16% more that I can spend on consumer goods and help better this economic situation in which we find ourselves. Does a CEO of Premera of WA deserve a 3 million annual salary, not including bonus? Remember, they make the money when premiums are collected and they do not pay. Is a 144% profit a fair profit? If you really want this country to see a leftist revolution, keep the course.

    One last comment, it is the far right that is encouraging and sponsoring the disruptions at the town hall meetings. I plan to attend and I wish to be heard. Discourse is good, rude behavior is not.

    • Ok Bob, have a chance to respond a little more thoughtfully.

      To your point about premiums being the same among insurers without the public option, perhaps that should tell you something about what health care genuinely costs. I think markets reach equilibrium over time, and thus premiums are in line with one another. With that said, we should investigate why they are so high. Not just for “profits,” but the high price of medical advances and new, expensive procedures. Further, private insurers are forced to bear the burden of government underpayments under MediCare (as MediCare pay rates go down, it is no coincidence that private premiums go up). additionally, out of control frivality in medical lawsuits cause a huge amount of expense for doctors and hospitals. They are forced to carry expensive malpractice insurance for which they have to pass on the cost. Plus, they tend to over-diagnose problems in order to be “conservative” and avoid potential lawsuits.

      But if we followed the plan on the left, to introduce a “public option” for everyone that severely undercuts the market price, we’d have problems in a short period of time- I can guarantee it. There will be initial joy for a lot of people for “seemingly” getting the same quality of care for half the price.

      But in the meantime, doctors and small practicioners will be closing down shop because they can’t afford to operate on the low-ball fees and over time quality and availability will diminish.

      The real problem is that there’s no way once this beast begins that any politician will be able to stop it. We will spend the remaining years of our lives debating how to reform the public option and how much more in taxes we are all willing to pay for it. But it will severely brutalize the private market, leaving most Americans without a choice to fall back on.

      And really, what politican could campaign on a pledge to “end public health insurance?” That’s the problem with entitlements- they build instant consistuents (and ultimately dependants). Once in place, they almost never can be reigned back in.

      So – quality and availability will suffer and our current level of care will diminish.

      Your experience in private insurance is certainly interesting, but I’ve read nothing to suggest that a public option will be run any differently. Granted, they will “cover” people with preexisting conditions at lower prices, but the purpose of the central bureaucracy these guys want to create is to impose limits on the nature of procedures that can be performed on people. My guess is that over time, people with severe conditions will be given minimal or inordinantly delayed attention and thus they will be implicitly allowed to die rather than be a drain on the public dole.

      With all this said, one way I diverge from a lot of folks on the right is that I am actually open to a form of government-sponsored insurance. I have wanted to know why there isn’t more discussion around a government “stop loss” insurance- a high tier insurance that would kick in if medical bills exceeded some (very high) threshold. This is one idea I’d be open to exploring.

      I think that’s what private insurers fear is unending losses that they can never recover. I would be open to hearing about the possibility of the government being the ultimate backstop against enormous medical bills.

      Seems humane as it would give people a shot who have chronic illnesses. Seems less onerous on the public dole, as there wouldn’t be nearly as many people to potentially cover (though obviously they’d be more expensive). And seems it would help private insurers offer lower premiums as their risk would be capped. Also, seems it would be easier to mitigate the risk of fraud as the volume of claims would be substantially lower and as private insurers would be the first backstop to ward off fraud (as the government, in my experience, is all but incapable of doing this).

      But that’s just a thought I’ve had. There’s probably some real holes in this one too.

      My major reasons for opposing a public option that is generally available to anyone for a small fee are: 1) I don’t think the proper role of government is that of a “market competitor” that both sets the rules and plays the game- in this or any industry; 2) I don’t think the government will do an efficient/effective job of running the program – I think the amount of waste and fraud will be enormous (akin to MediCare); 3) I don’t think we can afford it as a nation- it bends the long-term health care cost trend upwards and will threaten us with national insolvency unless we all pay ridiculous taxes that would impede economic growth; 4) I think it will low-ball the markets, squeezing out many of the economic incentives for other providers to supply insurance, medical technology, pharmaceuticals, and health care services in general.

      • We will spend the remaining years of our lives debating how to reform the public option

        No. It won’t take the rest of our years for congress to put forth the solution: A single payer, total nationalization of the system.

        Granted that doesn’t address the root problems, but congress never addresses the root problems with any of it’s programs.

  27. Bob: Please define “fair profit.” And please explain who the arbiter is who will define “fair profit” for all businesses and employees going forward.

    • Another question for Bob is what is the 144% a percentage of? I’m not sure that I could answer this question without knowing.

      In fact, the only way to answer the question is to know what others in the industry make. Markets decide these things. It certainly shouldn’t be up to the government or any other arbiter to determine fair profits. If people thing so, we’ve got another thing coming in this country economically. Ugh!

  28. Wow! Stephen and Paul your crushing the oppositions in this debate! Fact after fact. I’m sold!

    One thing I’d like to add. For all the non-sense about evil insurance companies and evil rich business and evil rich doctors and etc. Which is non-sense I’d say one thing if they are evil why are they all backing Obama’s plan.

    Sure, a private healthcare system is everyone’s ideal, however, how long can we the people continue to pay the ever increasing premiums? How about when you do get a serious illness and your buddy the insurance carrier finds a loophole to dump you? This is not hyperbole, this is fact.

    I’m sure this happens but on what type of scale, It becomes hyperbole when you some minuscule piece of date that is irrelevant to make an argument. And you don’t support the fact with information behind the argument.

    This blog article and discussion will stand as a warning beacon of the misled ideology of the left. Well done!

  29. Bob del Valle says:

    If you want to know how much profit (after taxes, expenses, etc.) the “healthcare” industry made last year, and last year was a down year because when people become unemployed they drop from the rolls because most can’t afford the COBRA payments, go to the following web site. I might awaken you and finally see why a non-profit public option is needed.

    http://money.cnn.com/magazines/fortune/fortune500/2009/industries/223/index.html

    For example, United Health Group made $2,977,000,000.00 in profit. This is two billion, nine hundred seventy seven million dollars. I call that excessive. This profit is made by collecting premiums, investing the funds, paying the service providers as little as they can get away with, getting in between you and your doctors, as they decide if your treatment is justifiable. These companies do not produce anything, do not support local communities (do you ever see a little league team sponsored by any of them?) The only way you can make money off them is hoping that the stock price goes up, as I looked to see if they paid dividends and it looks like not. There are fewer health insurance companies now than 10 yr ago. Larger companies have been buying up their smaller competitors. Fewer companies mean less competition and less competition gives you higher premiums.

    With money like this to be made, do you think that they would like to see a public option? Add up the profits from the top three and you come up with a whopping $6.851,800,000.00. That is six billion, eight hundred fifty one million, eight hundred thousand dollars of pure profit. And yes, I call that obscene. They do not care about you, as a matter of fact, if you come down with a serious illness, they would like to see you die sooner rather than later, there is less cost to them then.

    I retired this year after 35 yr. of teaching in the public school system. The state does not pay for or help with retirees health ins. They offer three plans, the least expensive is $15,648 for self, spouse and son still in college (med + dental)/yr. with a 20% coinsurance. If treatment costs $1000 I pay $200. For you that say well there are cheaper plans, I looked at those. Read the fine print: How much will they pay? What is the limit? Most have a plan limit, not per individual.

    To close, I want to see a public option. If it does the same for me and it is cheaper because profit is not the guiding factor, I might switch. This misinformation about government getting between you and your doctor is a bunch of hooey. The insurance companies are there already. By the way, if a public health option is so bad, how many of you see those over 65 declining Medicare? Yes, Medicare is underfunded and that will get resolved. So if Medicare has worked since 1965, why should there not be a public option as an option?

  30. Bob: “I call that excessive”

    So you are the arbiter of profits? You are the one who will decide going forward what is “fair” for a business or an employee to earn? May I ask how you come to your conclusions of what is “fair profits” and what is not fair? Where is the threshold, and why is the threshold where it is?

    I’m still not buying into this line of “logic.” You may “call that excessive” but that doesn’t mean it is. It also doesn’t mean it is morally wrong.

    Yes. the Medicare argument. I would love to decline Medicare now, in my relative youth, and get it over with. Unfortunately the Federal Government garnishes my wages. I am paying for it now, though I don’t get to use it, and may never have the opportunity due to the gross incompetence of management and planning that is that system ($50 Trillion in debt, bankrupt in less than ten years). And even if I plan to never use it, I don’t get the option of NOT paying for it. If I attempt to not pay for it, I go to prison. Helluva a choice to have.

    Bob, is it possible that there is a different solution that could relieve national debt, entitlement burdens, and reduce costs of medical care, and thusly insurance? Or is the “public option,” or more to the point, the current bill in Congress, the absolute only way this can happen?

    • Bob del Valle says:

      Where you happy last summer paying $4.00/gal? When the earnings report came out, did it cross your mind that the oil companies where doing rather well?

      Do you realize that the health insurance companies that started out as not for profit are being absorbed by the for profits?

      Monopolies are bad for you and I. Competition lowers costs and provides better services.

      • “Did it cross your mind that the oil companies where doing rather well?”

        Yes. I invested in them. I did rather well too. Unfortunately, as a consumer, $4 a gallon is cheap compared to where it “should be” to make alternative fuels and energy sources “competetive.”

        As for the non-profit companies being purchased by for-profit companies, I’d reckon that is in large part due to less effecient business models of non-profit companies. Last I checked, there was not one health insurance company in control of all health insurance. There were many. The link you provided had very many.
        And yes, competition can create an environment which produces lower prices and better services. It is also true that regulations and taxes increase costs and reduce services.

        Now, I am still waiting for your answers:

        1. How do you determine “fair profits?”
        (a) Where is the threshold of a “fair profit?”
        (b) Why is the threshold where it is?

        2. Is it possible that there is a different solution (other than the public option) that could relieve national debt, entitlement burdens, and reduce costs of medical care, and thusly health insurance?

  31. A government teacher! That explains it of course you think the government can do things right. That explains it all… After all our public school system is lagging farther and farther behind most of the world its laughable. So, let’s create a public option for health care so it can become just as good as say… Public School, the Post Office, your local DOT Office, with the simplicity of the IRS, FCC, and FTA all rolled into one. GREAT IDEA!!! And American’s actually buy Obama’s lies, maybe that has something to do with our public schools too….

    My children go to a blue ribbon public school and it’s a joke. I’ve got my 1st grader reading classic literature at a 4th grade level – Moby Dick, Mark Twain, The Count of Monte Cristo, etc. You should see the drivel they give him to read. He’ll be reading Plato and Aristotle before he gets to high school. No wonder you want the public option. You think hooked on phonics is appropriate for a five/six year old!!! At least my Children will understand what a true Republic is…

    Also, your data isn’t what I was asking for. Nothing is wrong with profit in the eyes of a non-government employee. Normal logical human beings understand profit is good thing. Try to live without food eating less calories then you burn before long you’ll look like a starved African child. That is what not earning a profit looks like.

    I was asking for data on what percentage of people are ripped off by insurance companies and compare that to other industries like say the graduation rate of US Children from HIGH SCHOOL and then you might realize what type of hyperbole you used.

    • Bob del Valle says:

      If you think I will be insulted by your putdowns of public school educators, sorry it will not work. There are some lousy teachers, and there are many many excellent teachers working in the public schools systems.

      You seem to be able to read and write. Thank your teacher.

      You get your mail 6 days a week, so PO must be working. Have you tried to mail a letter from another country? Forty four cents is mighty cheap.

      I also taught the last 4 years at a private ($25,000 yr tuition) school. Were the students any smarter? No, the % of exceptional students were about the same. The big difference was that at the private school there are no students with learning disabilities, if a student is a behavior problem, out they go. There are no children with limited English skills. There are no children that are in foster care. They can pick and choose. Were the teachers any better, no. There were some very good one and some not so good.

    • Alright, that crossed a line FT. My wife is a public school teacher. Seeing it all firsthand, she and I are definitely right there with you in saying the public school system has problems. But it’s frequently the system itself and not the teachers, in many cases. Anyway- I have lots of thoughts here, but those are for another time. This debate is on healthcare.

      • My mother is now a public school teacher after she finished home schooling me.

        It’s the system. The incentives are in the system for it to suck or push teachers to suck. No matter how good a teacher is they have these standardized tests and curriculum they have to teach too. It’s unfair to the students and our country. The public school system should be eliminated and privatized. To create true competition, this would give your wife and my mother better choices plus enhance child education.

        The comment was to find out if either Bob here thanks that the public school system is good, which would explain his expectation that government health care could be a good thing. Or he thinks that the public system is messed up then he has a little cognitive dissonance he has to try and explain as to why he’d support public health care.

        He seemed to take the latter in that it’s not the teachers but the system that is messed up. Although, he defends the Post Office, which is odd. For which I don’t have any data on but in my past job I was a billing manager and responsible for sending out 30,000 invoices every month. Trust me the post office is much less accurate then you believe. A person that might send 100-200 letters a year may only have 2 or 3 lost or returned but a 1,2,3% margin of error is high. In private industry I work at fractions of percents for margins of error. Analyzing out multiple sigmas although never have got to the famed six sigma level yet. Take your bank statement how often does your bank error in processing checks .00001% maybe?

        Do you know what type of ERROR rate I have with Medicare/Medicaid billing now? It’s above 6%. Private insurance doesn’t have those problems. And they don’t even have capitated services like the government forces in Medicare/Medicaid. It’s the same mess with the Post Office, Public Schools System, your local DOT, and probably the list would go on.

        As I’ve said before the debate isn’t about saving costs or better care. That’s all a lie liberals like Bob know this they don’t care about improved costs or better care if they did they’d look at the data. This is about power, holding down the evil profit grabbing successful people, it’s about putting need first, it’s about expanding peoples “rights”, i.e. it’s about power. Taking it from those that earn it and giving it to losers.

  32. Also, the reason that public hospitals in general are so lousy is because the uninsured go there to receive medical care that with regular doctor visits could be prevented or mitigated. And yes, your taxes and mine are paying for their now more expensive treatment.

    This isn’t true. People go to the emergency room because they are stupid or lazy. My wife is an RN in an emergency room and I’m a financial officer for a FREE federally funded health clinic. There is no reason for people to go to the emergency room in the area that I live with the dozens of free clinics in the area (I financial oversee 5 such sites) and yet my wife takes care of hundreds of people each month that go to the emergency room for a cough or a headache. Yet RIGHT down the street a FREE clinic…. Explain that…

    Might have something to do with our public education system… That’s all I can come up with…

    • Bob del Valle says:

      Where you happy last summer paying $4.00/gal? When the earnings report came out, did it cross your mind that the oil companies where doing rather well?

      Do you realize that the health insurance companies that started out as not for profit are being absorbed by the for profits?

      Monopolies are bad for you and I. Competition lowers costs and provides better services.

    • FT: “Yet RIGHT down the street a FREE clinic…. Explain that…

      OK, Finance man, explain your poor advertising budget.

      • We provide FREE service. Their is no “advertising budget”. We give away in excess of 1 million a year in free service that’s where the advertising budget goes.

        As for the $4.00/gal last year I only drove 55 miles to work and 55 miles back from work so the $4 wasn’t that big of a deal. My car got 32 miles per gallon so it was ok.

        As for the oil companies doing well I don’t mind as a couple of the mutual funds I owned at the time had oil stock in them. I don’t have any oil stock now I sold that stuff prior to the crash. Although have thought about reinvesting in some type of oil allocation with the way prices sit.

        As for competition your AGAINST competition so don’t bring that up. If you wanted competition you’d be for DRILL DRILL DRILL. And you’d be against government interference in health care. So don’t pretend to be for competition. That’s to easy to see through those lies…

      • I must ask FT, if you don’t advertise the service, how are people going to know it even exists, or where to go to get it? Word of mouth only travels so far before the message is distorted.

        The most used argument against Insurance Companies is they “waste money” on advertising…

        People don’t purchase products they don’t know exist.

        Yall really don’t even have one ad in a paper or phone book? Not one late night TV commercial?

        I have seen where non-profits use “free publicity” by soliciting a News or Journal report/article in the local papers or on TV to “increase awareness.” I’ve always taken that as political talk for advertisements.

        I don’t know your business, so I perhaps I’m way off base with all of this. Would having more patients increase revenues or is the funding for your service determined by a third party without regard to volume of “sales”?

      • Yes, that was an exaggeration. The advertising budget is just VERY small a couple thousand. We have yellow page ads and we do some radio ads. But we’ve been here since the 1970s. By my estimates we’ve penetrated the market in services we offer by nearly 70% on average. At that level the ROI is horrible on advertising.

        As for free publicity, we do get a bit of that from government officials. Whom the CEO and myself always send thank you notes to when they do that.

        Yes, more patients would increase revenue. But we’re pretty “market penetrated”. We can’t expand geographically because we endanger ourselves politically by stepping on toes. We have to expand services offerings. Like open a dental office, offer mental health services, expand pharmacy services, are an example of some things I’m working on. When we start those services we will of course market them. But at first just internally, we can really leverage our market penetration for word of mouth. For example the town we operate in has 1,500 people but we have 6,000+ patients.

        Again though, the ER issue. The people that go to the ER are just plain stupid. We offer services regardless of a patients ability to pay. If they are poor the get free services but perhaps they don’t want to go to the Social Services office and get proof that they are poor so they go to the ER instead out of laziness. We don’t do pain management because we don’t want to deal with the drug addicts. The quickest way to get a drug prescription is to go to the ER and say you’ve got a headache. Also, we don’t have services at night so if it’s 7PM and you don’t want to take an hour off work to come in here the next day you go to the ER instead and wait 6 hours.

  33. Ok – some more thoughts on the above.

    Bob may have a point that is carrying and that is that there are regions of the country in which there are implicit “monopolies.” I’ve read enough articles in the last couple of days discussing this, that I can’t deny it. But I still don’t think creating a “public option” that itself will become more and more like a monopoly over time is the answer to that problem. I think the right’s answer of letting insurance companies compete across state lines is the answer: bring more options onto the consumer’s plates. I’m really not sure where this idea poses any problems. Also, on a separate blog post, FT offered the idea of changing regulations such that insurance providers can tailor insurance to the needs of the individual, rather than being frequently forced to offer “one size fits all” plans: this could allow for much cheaper insurance for young people (some of the ones who currently fall into the category of “uninsured”).

    Bob- you’ve got to be stepping back from this debate thinking that we’re offering an absolute blizzard of ideas to address the healthcare problem. And we are definitely the types of the people that either have or will show up at these townhalls to protest the public option. We’re not the “raving lunatics” who “demand the status quo” that the media is portraying us and most like us to be. We want reform, we just don’t want this reform. It is unsustainable.

    Also – you mention casually that MediCare’s unfunded liabilities will be “fixed” and thus it is a system that has “worked” since 1965? I’m sorry, but I can’t let that slide. We’re about to have the crushing blow of 10s of millions of baby boomers retiring in the upcoming 20 years. The system is projected to go insolvent for several types of the services it provides by 2017. 2017!!! That would be right after the end of a second Obama term (provided he gets reelected, against all odds). The thing is $40 to $50 trillion underfunded, according to government actuaries. Somehow in the last year people have lost sight of what the world “trillion” really means. I have read that a way to think of it is if you think of a million, billion and trillion in terms of seconds, then 1 million seconds ago is 12 days ago, 1 billion seconds ago is something like 30 years ago, and 1 trillion seconds ago is the year 30,000 BC. That gives you some perspective.

    The entire US economy produces $14 – 15 trillion annually. In order to fund the MediCare gap, we would have to dedicate our entire national productive output towards funding the plan for 4 years. Obviously, that is impossible, in both theoretical and practical terms.

    So seriously: how do we fix it? We have to move the retirement age upwards towards 70 or so, for starters. Or- we have to do what Obama proposes we do, and ration care for the elderly in their waning years, denying coverage for otherwise “life saving” treatments.

    Whichever you think is more humane, your call Democrats!

    Anyway, the fact that we have lost site of what a trillion dollars is one very big reason we are in a host of problems in the upcoming years economically. And this public option, according to the Congressional Budget Office, will bend the cost curve upwards and add several trillion more to our national debt. Bob- you honestly cannot believe this is sustainable.

    We bash “for-profit” institutions such as healthcare and oil companies, but I’m curious how many people who bash them are invested in a 401k, a 403b, an IRA, or are a member of a private or public pension fund. If so, how much of the assets of those plans are either directly invested in healthcare-related companies that make these obscene profits (and thereby offer returns to the investees) or are indirectly invested in them through mutual funds or through government bonds that are funded on the tax revenues generated from these entities. You certainly wouldn’t want to see the value of these holdings decline precipitously upon the passage of legislation meant to cripple their “profit-making” capacity, I’m sure. This is the counter argument to anyone who trashes conserative elderly people that are members of “socialized MediCare.”

    The benefit of “for-profit” companies are that they have an incentive clearly to keep costs below the amount of revenues they take in. This leads to their ability to operate as going concerns, which means their operations are sustainable into the future. Clearly and indisputably this same thing is not true of government organizations. MediCare, Social Security, MediCaid, the Post Office, all operate at considerable losses relative to the direct tax revenues that are meant to finance them. Thus, the government is forced to subsidize them through direct income taxes, through sales taxes, and finally through excessive government borrowing that is producing the extreme deficits that we have been enduring and will continue to endure as long as the Obama Administration is in office, promising the moon and stars in the form of new and unfunded entitlements. This ends for the government either when they tax the society so much that economic activity is brought to a standstill or when they default on their sovereign debt.

    Mark my words, if the US ever came close to defaulting on its sovereign debt, there will be economic hell to pay in every corner of this globe. It would likely be the end of America as we have come to know it. I bet it would set us back economically for 20 or so years.

    And these governmetn entitlement programs are the number 1 reason we are in the position we are in. Social Security and MediCare. These are the ones that are killing us. The great progressive ideals of government financed institutions are unsustainable because they don’t have the right incentive structure relative to the incentives of private industry (i.e. the incentive to keep costs below revenues).

    Thus, this public option does not take into account the economic reality of “incentives.”

    • 1 million seconds = 11 days, 13 hours, 40 minutes, 48 seconds

      1 billion seconds = 31 years, 8 months, 8 days, 1 hour, 42 minutes, 23 seconds

      1 trillion seconds = 31,688 years, 9 months, 5 days, 7 hours, 58 minutes, 51 seconds.

      Average of 40 trillion and 50 trillion, 45 trillion.

      45 trillion seconds = 1,425,994 years, 4 months, 28 days, 2 minutes, 44 seconds.

  34. I do find it rather odd that health insurance companies are not allowed to compete across state lines. This in and of itself would seem to rectify the “lack of choice” that so many “public option” supporters are complaining about. Yet this isn’t even in the bill currently being discussed. The only health insurance plan in the current bill that would be allowed to compete across state lines is the government option. That affords the government a monopoly.

  35. TP: I remember Obama talking about this in the debates with McCain on cross-state insurance competition. He was against it b/c he said it would favor the more lightly regulated states. Insurance providers headquartered there could provide lower premiums, but wouldn’t have enough government oversite to suit Obama’s fancy.

    What a joke. That should tell you something right there about Obama’s inclinations. Given he has no experience in the private sector, it’s not surprising he has absolutely no faith in it. His faith is only in Ivy League educated, elitist bureaucrats. It’s a shame.

  36. Insurance providers headquartered there could provide lower premiums, but wouldn’t have enough government oversite to suit Obama’s fancy

    Perhaps, and maybe I’m going out on a limb here, but perhaps it would be a good move to allow competition across state lines. Then review the matter, say ten years down the road (since that is the time frame every projection goes anyway). The review could see which companies in what states provide the best services, coverage and costs. Then juxtapose that against the regulatory system of each state, and then form an opinion of what is the best way forward.

    If everyone is willing to “give a public option a chance” why not give interstate commerce a chance first, before setting up a massive government bureaucracy?

  37. NCDAVE says:

    The House Bill is published here: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2009/06/14/health-care-bill-released_n_232206.html (scroll toward the middle of the page to see Pages 1 – 50, then links are provided for the remainder of the bill).

    The list below is not comprehensive regarding the serious issues. I encourage all of you to read the bill yourselves, even though it is massive, and let your Representatives know exactly how you feel about this significant issue that will impact our lives and our economy. We can’t afford to get this wrong and to burden our country for generations. I will be reading all 1018 pages for myself, then calling and writing my Representative.

    HERE’S A HANDY LIST TO SHOW YOUR FRIENDS AND FAMILY. DON’T FORGET GRANDMA & GRAMPA.

    • Page 22: Mandates audits of all employers that self-insure…

    • Page 29: Admission: your health care will be RATIONED….

    • Page 30: A government committee will decide what treatments and benefits you get (and, unlike an insurer, there will be NO appeals process)

    • Page 42: The “Health Choices Commissioner” will decide health benefits for you. You will have no choice. None.

    • Page 50: All non-US citizens, illegal or not, will be provided with free healthcare services.

    • Page 58: Every person will be issued a National ID Healthcard .

    • Page 59: The federal government will have direct, real-time access to all individual bank accounts for electronic funds transfer.

    • Page 65: Taxpayers will subsidize all union retiree and community organizer health plans (read: SEIU, UAW and ACORN)

    • Page 72: All private healthcare plans must conform to government rules to participate in a Healthcare Exchange.

    • Page 84: All private healthcare plans must participate in the Healthcare Exchange (i.e., total government control of private plans)

    • Page 91: Government mandates linguistic infrastructure for services; translation: illegal aliens

    • Page 95: The Government will pay ACORN and Americorps to sign up individuals for Government-run Health Care plan.

    • Page 102: Those eligible for Med icaid will be automatically enrolled: you have no choice in the matter.

    • Page 124: No company can sue the government for price-fixing. No “judicial review” is permitted against the government monopoly. Put simply, private insurers will be crushed.

    • Page 127: The AMA sold doctors out: the government will set wages…. (Great: I really want a cheap doctor).

    • Page 145: An employer MUST auto-enroll employees into the government-run public plan. No alternatives.

    • Page 126: Employers MUST pay healthcare bills for part-time employees AND their families.

    • Page 149: Any employer with a payroll of $400K or more, who does not offer the public option, pays an=2 08% tax on payroll

    • Page 150: Any employer with a payroll of $250K-400K or more, who does not offer the public option, pays a 2 to 6% tax on payroll

    • Page 167: Any individual who doesnt’ have acceptable healthcare (according to the government) will be taxed 2.5% of income.

    • Page 170: Any NON-RESIDENT alien is exempt from individual taxes (Americans will pay for them).

    • Page 195: Officers and employees of Government Healthcare Bureaucracy will have access to ALL American financial and personal records.

    • Page 203: “The tax imposed under this section shall not be treated as tax.” Yes, it really says that.

    • Page 239: Bill will reduce physician services for Medic aid. Seniors and the poor most affected.”

    • Page 241: Doctors: no matter what speciality you have, you’ll all be paid the same (thanks, AMA!)

    • Page 253: Government sets value of doctors’ time, their professional judgment, etc.

    • Page 265: Government mandates and controls productivity for private healthcare industries.

    • Page 268: Government regulates rental and purchase of power-driven wheelchairs.

    • Page 272: Cancer patients: welcome to the wonderful world of rationing!

    • Page 280: Hospitals will be penalized for what the government deems preventable re-admissions.

    • Page 298: Doctors: if you treat a patient during an initial admission th at results in a readmission, you will be penalized by the government.

    • Page 317: Doctors: you are now prohibited for owning and investing in healthcare companies!

    • Page 318: Prohibition on hospital expansion. Hospitals cannot expand without government approval.

    • Page 321: Hospital expansion hinges on “community” input: in other words, yet another payoff for ACORN.

    • Page 335: Government mandates establishment of outcome-based measures: i.e., rationing.

    • Page 341: Government has authority to disqualify Medicare Advantage Plans, HMOs, etc.

    • Page 354: Government will restrict enrollment of SPECIAL NEEDS individuals.

    0 Page 379: More bureaucracy: Telehealth Advisory Committee (healthcare by phone).

    • Page 425: More bureaucracy: Advance Care Planning Consult: Senior Citizens, assisted suicide, euthanasia?

    • Page 425: Government will instruct and consult regarding living wills, durable powers of attorney, etc. Mandatory. Appears to lock in estate taxes ahead of time.

    • Page 425: Goverment provides approved list of end-of-life resources, guiding you in death.

    • Page 427: Government mandates program that orders end-of-life treatment; government dictates how your life ends.

    • Page 429: Advance Care Planning Consult will be used to dictate treatment as patient’s health deteriorates. This can include an ORDER for end-of-life plans. An ORDER from the GOVERNMENT.

    • Page 430: Government will decide what level of treatments you may have at end-of-life.

    • Page 469: Community-based Home Medical Services: more payoffs for ACORN.

    • Page 472: Payments to Community-based organizations: more payoffs for ACORN.

    • Page 489: Government will cover marriage and family therapy. Government intervenes in your marriage.

    • Page 494: Government will cover mental health services: defining, creating and rationing those services.

    NOTES:

    They missed page 16 that, if you change jobs no one can insure you but the Govt. It prohibits Ins cos. from writing new policies.

    There are only two things in ObamaCare that are exempt from rationing: ABORTIONS & ASSISTED SUICIDE….

    http://cache.gettyimages.com/xd/301-55.mov?c=NewsMaker&d=9B6C5E9A385F67CCC4CC08629D5F7BD5&k=2&v=1

    P.S. I also thought we were going to close “Guantanamo Bay” months and months ago…?? Oh, and what about getting out of Irag? And the “surge” was so dumb, that now Obama is using it in Afghanistan. And, let’s not forget about how bad Bush’s “Un-authorized Surveillence” of known terrorists was; Now, Obama is using it 24/7…!! And now, he wants us to turn in our own citizens if they say something “FISHY” about his socialist health care….

    • Alan says:

      Readers of NCDAVE’s rant: Do yourself a favor and go to http://www.pleasecutthecrap.com.

      • I poked around on that website Alan. Looks like a bunch of far-left insulting and fear-mongering to me.

        That thing can’t shake a stick at my buddy Douglas Elmendorf, who whipped out his calculator over at the Congressional Budget Office and concluded this bill will wreak fiscal havoc on our nation.

        “Under questioning by members of the Senate Budget Committee, Douglas Elmendorf, director of the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office, said bills crafted by House leaders and the Senate health committee do not propose “the sort of fundamental changes” necessary to rein in the skyrocketing cost of government health programs, particularly Medicare. On the contrary, Elmendorf said, the measures would pile on an expensive new program to cover the uninsured.

        Though President Obama and Democratic leaders have repeatedly pledged to alter the soaring trajectory — or cost curve — of federal health spending, the proposals so far would not meet that goal, Elmendorf said, noting, “The curve is being raised.” His remarks suggested that rather than averting a looming fiscal crisis, the measures could make the nation’s bleak budget outlook even worse. ”

        Judging from that insight from Mr. Elmendorf, doing nothing actually would be better than doing what Mr. Obama would have us do.

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