Here’s why health care “rationing” is old news

WASHINGTON — Last week, U.S. Rep. Phil Gingrey (R-Ga.), an obstetrician, trotted out a well-worn canard about the Affordable Care Act: It will kill old people. Gingrey had trained his overheated rhetoric on one portion of the new law — the Independent Payment Advisory Board.

“Democrats like to picture us as pushing grandmother over the cliff or throwing someone under the bus. In either one of those scenarios, at least the senior has a chance to survive. But under this IPAB, where a bunch of bureaucrats decide whether you get care. . .I guarantee you . . .that the patient is going to die,” Gingrey declared.

Gingrey’s gambit was a bit desperate. He managed to remind voters that the plan he favors — a proposal to turn Medicare into a voucher program — has its own considerable political liabilities.

He also put the spotlight on what is arguably the smartest innovation in the new health care law — an independent panel of experts who will make decisions about cutting Medicare costs. President Barack Obama hasn’t gotten much credit from deficit hawks, who insist that he hasn’t been serious about cutting the federal budget. In fact, the IPAB is a smart plan to keep future health care costs from sinking the entire government.

So, fiscal conservatives love it, right? Not so much. National Review editor Rich Lowry denounced the president’s “obnoxious faith in the surpassing wisdom of unelected experts.” Others have seen in the panel the unmistakable outlines of a hammer and sickle stamped on a bright red flag.

Even some Democrats have turned against the planned panel, complaining that it would take away too much Congressional authority over Medicare spending.

But the most widespread criticism is that the panel will lead to “rationing,” as Gingrey charged. In fact, the Affordable Care Act specifically states that the IPAB may not make any proposals to ration care.

Besides, that’s a specious argument for House Republicans to make, since the vast majority of them endorsed the plan presented by House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan. By 2030, according to the Congressional Budget Office, the vouchers it creates would buy a policy that covers only a third of the care that Medicare currently delivers. That’s not rationing?

For all the scary talk about killing grandma, here’s a simple fact every American consumer of health care surely understands: you only get the health care that you or your insurance company will pay for. In other words, health care is already “rationed.”

Take organ transplants, among the most heavily regulated (and “rationed”) medical procedures. When Arizona cut its Medicaid budget a few months ago, transplant patients who had waited months or years for surgery were suddenly no longer eligible because they didn’t have the money for needed procedures.

Patients must also be able to show the resources to pay for a lifetime of pharmaceuticals. Hospitals regularly reject patients who cannot show that they have the means to pay for the anti-rejection drugs they will need. Isn’t that rationing?

So the big question isn’t, should we ration? We already do. The question is, who decides? I know “experts” are the new enemy, but I’d rather have a panel of physicians, surgeons and health care economists making those decisions than members of Congress. Whether they are physicians or bankers, Democrats or Republicans, they are prone to pander to the special interests who give them money: pharmaceutical companies, medical equipment manufacturers and hospital companies, among others.

By contrast, the IPAB is expected to be guided by comparative-effectiveness studies that show which procedures are both less costly and effective. Quiet as it’s kept, some medical procedures don’t make patients any better, but they do make doctors and hospitals richer. Why should Medicare pay for those?

The United States spends more per capita on health care than any other country in the world, without producing measurably better outcomes. And costs are continuing to soar. Bring on the experts.

105 comments Add your comment

Greg

June 29th, 2011
3:02 pm

The CBO has new estimates greatly increasing the cost of ObamaCare. So much for controlling costs….

Jimmy62

June 29th, 2011
3:04 pm

The difference is in who does the rationing. Is it the insurance company you have chosen to do business with? Or a panel of unelected bureaucrats that some politician you never voted for decided should have power over your life?

Also, we do have measurably better incomes. There are numerous conditions from various cancers to heart disease that have a far higher survival rate here than in other countries. Where we are behind is in things that relate to personal responsibility, like not overeating, making sure you get some exercise, making sure you pa a small amount of money to get a physical once in a while, stuff like that. If I have a serious illness, statistically I would be far better off in the US than anywhere else.

But please, continue to push your partisan lies.

Lowskie

June 29th, 2011
3:05 pm

Don’t recall you having a M.D., so I’ll have to defer to Rep. Gingrey.

Joe The Plumber Too

June 29th, 2011
3:06 pm

Let me fix that headline for you CT: Here’s why barry the boy blunder is a joke as a President. Aww, never mind, trying to type everything wrong with this administration would take as long as we have left with that clown in office, a little over eighteen months. Come on November 2012, Change the rest of America can believe in.

dougmo2

June 29th, 2011
3:10 pm

The question to you CT Soros is who do YOU want to make these healthcare decisions about YOU? Is it YOUR doctor, who you have trust in? Or is it somebody in DC, who reads a chart and says yes or no behind closed doors?

But none of this matters. The Supreme Court will slap this abortion of a law down before the elections next year, thus insuring that Obama will not get reelected. (thank God)

alex

June 29th, 2011
3:16 pm

Actually I think we do need some type of “rationing” or whatever you want to call it.Let’s not be fooled, these EXPERTS from my proffesion are VERY falliable and arogant and well may adopt guidelines without scientific evidence. Witness the American Heart Assoc, guidelines ,where 40% are non-evidenced based,only EXPERT opinion!!

Bill

June 29th, 2011
3:18 pm

We have had health care rationing for a long time. If you don’t have insurance, or money, you don’t get it, or you get inferior care. If you do have insurance, then some insurance bureaucrat makes your health care decisions. The driving force behind those decisions is the profitbility of hte insurance company. Put the insurance companies out of business, and give me a government run single payer system. You can remove at least 20% of the cost right off the top by doing that.

Bill

June 29th, 2011
3:19 pm

Enter your comments here

DEM

June 29th, 2011
3:21 pm

You have no idea what rationing means. It means for the government to decide how much of a quantity you may legally purchase or obtain — it does NOT mean that goods are distributed according to ability to pay. If that is what rationing meant, then everything would be “rationed” and the word would have no meaning. (So if the government says everyone may have one bushel of what per month, that’s rationing. If Joe can;t afford more than one bushel per month, but is free to buy as much as he can afford,, not rationed.) Of course, as Orwell warned, the corruption of language is step 1 towards despotism, so I’m sure you will continue to have at it.

Bobby

June 29th, 2011
3:27 pm

Can someone explain to me what is the difference between the government rationing health care and the insurance companies rationing health care? Either way health care is rationed. In the case of insurance companies it is rationed for the benefit of their CEO. We have 1600 plus persons on the ADAP list waiting for access to life saving HIV drugs. Where is Gingrey’s concern about rationing their health care by the State of Georgia.

timbo

June 29th, 2011
3:28 pm

When roughly 2/3rds of the American people are against this healthcare bill, why continue to argue its merits? As Nancy Pelosi said, ‘we have to sign it before we see what is in it”. Well, it has been signed, and the majority of the folks don’t like it. Now the AARP is coming out against it, after they supposedly supported it. This HC bill will be repealed by the next president if the supreme court doesn’t do it first. And, the polls right now show more people support an un-named Republican challenger then they do Obama. What does that tell you?

Tychus Findlay

June 29th, 2011
3:29 pm

If the government’s track record for managing the USPS, public school systems, and maintaining the roads is any indicator, then government-run healthcare is likely to kill us all.

The Anti-Wooten

June 29th, 2011
3:30 pm

@Dougmo2, if the gang of 5 on USSC strikes down ACA you’ll not be able to get elected dogcatcher with an R after your name. Be careful what you wish for.

Dr. Pangloss

June 29th, 2011
3:33 pm

dougmo2
June 29th, 2011
3:10 pm

The question to you CT Soros is who do YOU want to make these healthcare decisions about YOU? Is it YOUR doctor, who you have trust in? Or is it somebody in DC, who reads a chart and says yes or no behind closed doors?
——————–
Doug, have you never dealt with the insurance company? It isn’t your doctor who makes a decision about rationing your health care. The doctor generally does want to perform the expensive procedure. That’s why you’re driving a Toyota and he’s driving a Lexus (at least). It’s a clerk at the insurance company who decides you can’t have that liver transplant.

Mongo

June 29th, 2011
3:35 pm

So the local Cons are trying to pretend that your doctor decides what medical care you get, not the insurance company hack who gets bonuses to deny claims. God, these Cons will lie about anything won’t they.

uhoh

June 29th, 2011
3:38 pm

Would that be similar to the canard that your Pres offered today something to the effect that “giving tax breaks to the big oil companies and the corporate jet owners will deprive a child of a college education or healthcare for seniors?” Similar? Eh?

Good Grief

June 29th, 2011
3:40 pm

Greg @ 3:02 – I’ve reached the point where I don’t even listen to the CBO, mainly because they hold to these static views that consumers will not change their habits in accordance with taxes, wages, expenses, etc. The CBO has to look at a budget and say Person A will spend the same amount of money over the course of the year if they are taxed 25% as if they were taxes 35%. You and I both know that consumers change their habits at the drop of a hat.

Trusslady

June 29th, 2011
3:40 pm

Timbo – please give links to your “facts”. Merely stating “talking points” does nothing to further the conversation, and makes your response irrelevant.

Kuntchak

June 29th, 2011
3:51 pm

7 shootings in one night in Metro Atlanta – Dekalb & South Fulton. It’s been reported that all were blacks. Now why would I take advice from someone who is asking for more money to go to segments of our population that just don’t give a d*mn? Why should I believe the rhetoric about inner city minorities as being victims all the time? A lot of them are a drain on our city and a nightmare to our public safety. Instead of more of my tax dollars flowing your way, I’d like to propose some solutions that won’t cost a thing and will have much better results, and will have the added benefit of doing wonder for your peoples’ PR:

Go to school, respect other people and their property, don’t break the law, improve your job/earning skills, don’t spend ANY money on lotto, shiny car rims, tattoos, hair weave, illeagal drugs, use a condom, don’t have single parent families, quit giving your money to religious scam artisits, pull up your pants, stop complaining about being a victim of racism to anyone who’ll listen, and join the rest of America at making this country better.

Yes my comments will offend some, but we’re well beyond the point of holding back the truth so as to not offend someone. As I see it, you can ’stay black’ and continue the trend of fatherless homes, incarceration, poverty or GET WITH THE F’ING PROGRAM ALREADY.

Eubieful O'Sheet

June 29th, 2011
3:54 pm

“Trotting out the well-worn canard”……

Where was CT when Democrats were proclaiming that Republicans were going “to take away seniors’ Social Security”?

Guess whether CT is upset (or quietly chirping with the crickets) all depends on who is doing the well-worn canard trotting.

However, much nicer now that she has given up any pretense of non-partisanship since she is no longer in her former occupation (editor running the Atlanta Journal-Constitution into bankruptcy).

granny godzilla

June 29th, 2011
3:56 pm

In order to trust “experts” you have to accept that they know more about a certain subject than we do.

That seems to particularly dificult for the right.

Sad for those folks – that their egos overtake common sense.

hello

June 29th, 2011
3:57 pm

good point Tychus- know this – the elected officials running the government all have the same #1 priority, it’s called getting re-elected. Their #1 priority isn’t passing laws to help the people. So why then, would anybody want politicians to have more power over the economy or our healthcare system.

Do you realize how susceptible you are to their advertising? You’re like a used car salesman’s wet dream.

Don't Tread

June 29th, 2011
4:01 pm

“a well-worn canard about the Affordable Care Act: It will kill old people”

But wait. We NEED “death panels”, according to you. Isn’t that the ultimate embodiment of rationing health care?

Ignorant Conservative

June 29th, 2011
4:02 pm

Under the Affordable Healthcare Act:

-Everyone who walks into a hospital seeking medical treatment will be required to have insurance.(Last year GA taxpayers spent $500 million dollars paying the medical bills of uninsured sick people. HELLO??)

- Insurers must offer the same premium to all applicants to the same age and sex regardless of existing conditions.

- The plan removes all annual and lifetime coverage caps.

- Some health insurance benefits are “essential” coverage for which there is no co-pay.

- Dependants can remain on their parents’ policies until age 26.

- Insurers can’t drop policy holders when they get sick.

- Maximum annual deductibles are $2,000 per individual and $4,000 per family.

- Approved preventive care and check-ups don’t require co-pays.

- Medicare is expanded to small, rural hospitals and facilities.

And these things are bad because….????

As per the US Dept of HHS, the law has only increased premiums between 1% and 2%.

FYI – between 1999 and 2009 (the Bush years), the average health insurance premium rose from $5,700 to $12,700.00. Funny, I don’t remember too many conservatives griping about this at the time.

Here’s a suggestion for Joe the Plumber Too, timbo, dougmo2, Jimmy62, and Lowskie, who are clearly frightened and misinformed, and really don’t have any idea what the health care act entails.
For a clear, non-partisan overview of the plan, go to Wikipedia, search “Affordable Healthcare Act”, and inform yourselves. It can’t be much fun coming across as stupid AND ignorant. Tell Phil Gingrey to check it out, too.

Scooter

June 29th, 2011
4:03 pm

No Cynthia, we understood the law was going to be far more expensive and add to our budget deficit in the long run, while you were too filled with hope to see the obvious. We also opposed Medicare Part D when Bush 423 implemented it. I digress, your democrats haven’t passed a budget and Obama hasn’t made any serious effort to address the out of control costs of past entitlement programs. instead, they were too busy added this financial bomb to federal register and trying to use the complicit “media” to portray the Tea Party as racist.. Now, in the future when grown ups try to get the costs under control, the children (dems) will yell republicrats are trying to kill grandma. Heck, look how they are acting about medicare today. It is past democrat entitlements that are bankrupting the nation and democrats are making no effort to resolve the issue.

ATF

June 29th, 2011
4:15 pm

“National Review editor Rich Lowry denounced the president’s “obnoxious faith in the surpassing wisdom of unelected experts.” Others have seen in the panel the unmistakable outlines of a hammer and sickle stamped on a bright red flag.”

What the GOP believes in is the wisdom of the amoral market place. No person has to decide anything – so no one is ever wrong, can ever lie, deceive, or even be at risk for making a choice. Whether someone lives or dies is based on their ability to pay. Somehow that is more moral than any human making a decision.

Or, maybe, it is that for the GOPers it is okay if the decision is made as Arizona decided. Medicaid recipients in Arizona cannot get kidney transplants paid for by Medicaid because it is too expensive. Of course, since it was a Republican governor and a Republican legislature that made those decisions, somehow they are not a “death panel.”

They have no ground to stand on. We have spent 50 years waiting for the insurance industry, which controls access to the health care industry, to come up with some way to make health care both accessible and prices rational. What we have is the most expensive health care system in the world and we are rated something like 39th among industrial nations in the efficacy of our health care system. The market place failed. FAILED in capital letters. Enough. It is a national problem, as serious as clean water, clean air, and national defense. I am ready for the federal government to take a stab at it.

RogersParkRob

June 29th, 2011
4:15 pm

What is the role of this Independent Payment Advisory Board? So I’m ill and my situation is presented to this board. They decide against “paying” for a certain treatment. Then what? Is this where I’m given a pill to make me comfortable?

granny godzilla

June 29th, 2011
4:17 pm

ATF

Well said sir.

Deirdre

June 29th, 2011
4:29 pm

Ms Tucker, I hate to burst your bubble but I have relatives who have had their healthcare rationed. My aunts, uncles and cousins all live in Northern Ireland and have often come to the United States because they cannot get the most up to date healthcare from the United Kingdom’s socialized medicine. Sadly, my uncle passed away at 76 from a curable cancer. He was deemed(by the gov’t) to be too old to receive the newest and most effective chemo and was given the less expensive radiation treatment.

While I understand that our healthcare system needs to be overhauled, it is absolutely NOT inaccurate to say that a gov’t can and will limit the availability of treatment based only on the age of the person receiving it. I have personally seen it happen any number of times.

Simple but true

June 29th, 2011
4:30 pm

Maybe if Doctors didn’t charge so much for their services, healthcare would be more affordable and we wouldn’t have to wrap it in all this red tape, which has done nothing but drive everyone crazy.

Nobody ever calls them out on this though.

Pablo

June 29th, 2011
4:32 pm

Historically, politicians from both parties have been making promises to the American people that the know themselves they will not be able to keep. So, in my opinion, the issue with healthcare is not whether there are going to be death panels or review boards or whatever euphemisms anyone can think of, but whether the delivery and management of healthcare is a legitimate function of government; and with the track record of failure exhibited by both parties in matters of fiscal management, the less government there is involved, the better.

Chris

June 29th, 2011
4:34 pm

Bobby you are very misleading…You may certainly have 1600 freeloaders waiting for FREE HIV meds…But How many are on the list that are ready and able to PAY for their medications? you PAY you get PLAY..Bet there is not ONE person being denied who is paying cash for their meds?

jconservative

June 29th, 2011
4:34 pm

A Tale of Rationing

April 2008. The doctor ordered 30 days of physical therapy. The insurance company would only pay for 20. Appeals all the way up the latter. The insurance company would only pay for 20 days.
So the 20 days is all that were done.

Rationing.

Then out of pocket I paid for the other 10 days that the doctor insisted were needed.

Turns out the doctor was correct. The other 10 days were needed. Badly needed.

But on the bright side the insurance company saved a bunch of money by not paying for the other 10 days.

Rationing.

Harry Callahan

June 29th, 2011
4:38 pm

jconservative:
I have a personal story which is just the opposite of yours. I love how insurance is always the big bad wolf so therefore we should put the government in charge instead of insurance companies.

sideshowtom

June 29th, 2011
4:39 pm

ATF you are once again nothing but a flack for the DEM talking points. The cost of healthcare in this country is out of control because it is over regulated by the government. Policies cannot be sold across state lines, there is no true competition in the marketplace. This is a result of over regulation by government, mostly DEM.

If you have not seen sufficient evidence of GOV managed anything, after Medicare, Medicade, Social Security, and the USPO, then you are in denial. Better yet, look to the shy rocketing cost and abysmal service of the British and Canadian National Health plans.

I assume you are quite happy with your GOV provided benefits: welfare, Section 8, Medicade, and who knows what else. No stretch for you to want the government to pick up yet another entitlement.

Harry Callahan

June 29th, 2011
4:41 pm

I grew up with “National Healthcare” being a Navy brat. My father who is a retired O7 took us to private doctors rather than Navy docs. Wonder why? Wake up America and stop Obama care. Obama care will make healthcare unaffordable so the public will demand “National Healthcare” which is what I grew up with. I can’t wait, let the misery begin!

Vast Right Wing Conspiracy

June 29th, 2011
4:42 pm

Cynthia, where have you been?

Your stuff is like the best of the Keystone Cops and Three Stooges rolled into one. I really miss it when you are not around.

The government has only one way to control costs – ration care. If you want to ration it for those that can not afford it, so be it. If I can not afford health care, I am at the mercy of others. If I can afford it, don’t tread on me.

George P. Burdell

June 29th, 2011
4:42 pm

If you are going to make everyone buy insurance, then a good portion of that money should go into something similar to a HSA that stays with the individual. Then, have people pay for more of the day-to-day. Once people are making decisions, you will have a more market based approach where doctors and other providers would actually have to compete. The remainder of premiums would go towards a pool for catastrophic and long-term illnesses where we “ration” services.

I don’t necessarily have a big problem with requiring everyone to chip in for health insurance. I have a huge problem handing over increasing sums of money to the government to then be spent how they best see fit. It doesn’t look like a real good deal with retirement planning and looks less appealing for healthcare. If every citizen built up their own HSA, then so many of the decisions are then taken out of the hands of third parties.

Harry Callahan

June 29th, 2011
4:43 pm

George P. Burdell
I agree 100%. Would love to do this with Social Security also.

Harry Callahan

June 29th, 2011
4:44 pm

Can you imagine a country where you are FREE to fail or succeed

slim

June 29th, 2011
4:56 pm

real christians don’t need no stinkin’ healthcare, we put it all in gawd’s hands…

cosby

June 29th, 2011
4:57 pm

Once again, no matter how you look at it, the Obama hhealth spending bill does not cut cost. why does a government agency decide who gets what service. That, my dear Miss Tucker, is socialism. along with all the waivers..as why does the government decide who has to obey the law, or why a flaw in the medicaid issue will cost billions…this bill is nothing but trash and yes the DEATH PANEL. Take care of ones self and you will not need to worry whether the insurance company or the federal Government tells you what health care you can receive.

another voice

June 29th, 2011
5:00 pm

Yesterday, my wife and I read through her new health insurance policy from one of America’s leading insurance giants. Her policy which has a $5,000 deductible and a $5500 out of pocket annual expense limit. That’s not bad in today’s marketplace, especially when coupled with a health savings account of up to $3000. Of course that does not include the cost of the monthly insurance premiums of which she pays a significant portion and the employer pays the rest. We are thankful the company she works for is stiil willing and able to do that. Incidentally, this is the best policy option available to her. However, the devil is in the details. The exclusions are multitudinous. Among them:The insurance company will not cover an organ transplant in any form if needed nor the neccessary medicines and followup medical care necessary. They will not cover a PSA screening for males unless one is already shown to have cancer or prostatic disease. And then the screening is only available once every two years. They will not cover any kind of weight loss treatment or medication. They will not cover any form of speech therapy and many physical therapies were a person to need it as a result of a stroke or any other illness or accident. They will not cover any form of weight loss treatment or medication. They will not pay for compounded medicines of any kind. (Thus, the independent pharmacist is dealt a below the belt blow by the obvious deal struck between big pharma and insurance monopolies.)They will not cover any form of substance abuse treatment or medication. They will not cover mental health treatment of any kind, which if one did not have the need for before reading the insurance policy, will upon doing so.

Now, who is deciding who gets healtthcare and who doesn’t and how much of what kind? The healthcare provider sitting down with the patient and helping her/him make a decision about the optimum health outcome and treatment is a joke. That decision-making has already been removed from the equation. It has been made by some panel of unknown persons within the insurance industry. If the insurance company will not pay for needed treatment and the individual does not have the financial wherewithal to do so, then the decision has already been made that pallative care is the only option. In some cases persons will live with the medical condition as best they can. In some cases they will die. In what illusional reality of today’s healthcare world is the doctor, Congressman Gingrey living in?

slim

June 29th, 2011
5:01 pm

keep your govt. hands off my govt. provided medicare!

What are you smoking

June 29th, 2011
5:03 pm

Ignorant Conservative, my premiums went up over 20% this year in anticipation of the foul up we call Obamacare, so I don’t subscribe to your figures of increasing only 1% – 2% based on my actual results.

slim

June 29th, 2011
5:04 pm

bluecross is the devil

ByteMe

June 29th, 2011
5:07 pm

Ignorant Conservative, my premiums went up over 20% this year in anticipation of the foul up we call Obamacare, so I don’t subscribe to your figures of increasing only 1% – 2% based on my actual results.

Mine went up 10%. Of course, it also went up 10% the previous year. And 8% the year before that. Seems like nothing changed… except there’s no longer a lifetime limit and pre-existing conditions are now covered. Such a deal!

slim

June 29th, 2011
5:09 pm

burt reynolds don’t believe in insurance.

Ramblin Wreck

June 29th, 2011
5:18 pm

“President Barack Obama hasn’t gotten much credit from deficit hawks, who insist that he hasn’t been serious about cutting the federal budget. In fact, the IPAB is a smart plan to keep future health care costs from sinking the entire government.”

I have a foolproof plan to make sure health care costs don’t sink the entire government – don’t have the government pay for healthcare! The problem is that people now assume that Medicare and Medicaid have always been there and should be a part of the government.

Good Grief

June 29th, 2011
5:22 pm

Simple but true @ 4:30 – A lot of the exorbitant health care costs in this country stem from frivolous lawsuits. Doctors are often so afraid that any and every patient might sue them that they stockpile some moneis, or go for more conservative, safer treatment options.

ATF @ 4:15 – Please point out where in the US Constitution the federal government is authorized to require, under penalty of fine or imprisonment, a legal, law-abiding citizen to purchase a consumer product.

Ignorant Conservative @ 4:02 – I’m sorry that these “gripes” only appeared under a Democrat President. I promise next time we’ll all only complain when a Republican is in office. Wouldn’t want to hurt poor, little Barack’s feelings, would we?

slim @ 4:56 – Nice over-generalization.

Harry Callahan

June 29th, 2011
5:29 pm

What did we do before Medicare and Social Security? I know everyone didn’t die because I wouldn’t be here if that happened. I guess we can really live if we don’t have these programs.

David

June 29th, 2011
5:32 pm

Get with the program Tucker. Our economy is failing and you keep trying to change the subject. Obama’s debt tally is over 14 trillion. We are bankrupt. You can’t blame that on Bush.

hobby

June 29th, 2011
5:34 pm

george p—
you are on the right track, but needs to go further.

Allow insurance to be sole accross state lines
do away with certificate of need
do not allow doctors/hospitals/pharmacies to be paid by the insurance co–pt should pay and be
reimbursed

hobby

June 29th, 2011
5:34 pm

slim

June 29th, 2011
5:38 pm

bristol’s up and gone hollywood. got her a nose job and a black boyfriend. you go girl.

WOODSTOCK MIKE

June 29th, 2011
5:38 pm

We have been gradually programmed to keep thinking that because you have insurance you shouldn’t have to pay for anything. Well, that’s not the case now and has never been the case. And for those that say well 20 or 30 years ago the cost wasn’t so much my response is everything now costs much more than it did 20 or 30 years ago. Why don’t people complain about car insurance? Believe me, if you break an arm or leg and have insurance you appreciate it. Take a look at the bill and how much you paid. I’m not saying it’s a perfect system, especially when you are self-employed, but when you really look at it I don’t think everyone is as unhappy as the media makes you believe. There is always an example of when you hear some tragic story but that’s with anything, you can’t base the whole system off that. When you are dealing with 300+ million people everything won’t be perfect, no system will be.

slim

June 29th, 2011
5:40 pm

crank up the death panels and weed the old farts off the govt. teet.

stepper

June 29th, 2011
5:44 pm

Let me see, you add 10 million new healthcare recipients to the healthcare rolls under the Affordable Healthcare Act without adding any physicians and you claim there will not be any rationing of care or treatment. Surely you jest or you are living in purely a dream world. The time restaints put on the providers themselves to give ample care will create a forced rationing of care.

Atlmom

June 29th, 2011
5:51 pm

simple but true: really? REALLY? A doctor trains for at least 10 years. Then yearly has to keep training. And you think they’re earning TOO MUCH? REALLY? who is it you want to be your doctor? Any old person on the street? Doctor’s salaries are down quite a bit from 10 or 20 or 30 years ago. Fewer people are going into the profession. where do you think our best and brightest students are going to school? i’m pretty sure it’s not med school. They’re going into professions where they are respected, and where they are not told they are ‘earning too much.’ WOW.
My kids’ doctor works more than 12 hour days, and I can guarantee you his income is down from 10 years ago. it’s really sad.

Atlmom

June 29th, 2011
6:02 pm

where’s my comment?

Anyway, I said: govt doesn’t care about health CARE. It cares about insurance? who cares if you have insurance if you can’t get the CARE.
If they cared about health CARE they would open free clinics all over the country. And then we would be free to go to the ‘free’ clinic or do whatever we do now.

as for the ‘mandate.’ it’s absurd. what about homeless people? Are you going to put them in prison? since they can’t pay a premium, and are unlikely to register with the govt to get their subsidy…what is the punishment? We have overcrowded jails now.

Atlmom

June 29th, 2011
6:04 pm

woodstock mike: isn’t that COMPLETELY the point!? That NO system would work for all of us? That our country is so large and so diverse that it is crazy to think that anything could work for all of us in something like health care???

The point of the states is for the states to do stuff that they can manage, because states are smaller. the federal govt is so large that it doesn’t make sense to have them managing our health care…it’s going to cost more and we’re going to get lousier service.

Good Grief

June 29th, 2011
6:07 pm

Atlmom @ 6:04 – Be careful with that line of thinking. I once made the comment here on CT’s blog that I didn’t think the federal government was capable of handling health care and I was called unpatriotic. Apparently you are supposed to blindly follow the government, for all that they do is good and holy.

Fireball

June 29th, 2011
6:14 pm

stepper

June 29th, 2011
5:44 pm
Let me see, you add 10 million new healthcare recipients to the healthcare rolls under the Affordable Healthcare Act without adding any physicians and you claim there will not be any rationing of care or treatment.

Yeah I also see that as the biggest problem in all this. We simply can’t create millions of additional patients and expect the physicians we have now to care for them all.

I can see the day when my veterarian also becomes my health care provider. “Hey Doc, I’m bringin the cat in for his shots and a flea dip, can you do my annual physical while we’re there?”

B Cosby

June 29th, 2011
6:15 pm

As with everything the current DUMB-BAMA administration has touched, the health care bill is a joke. The only people thet think the health care bill is a good idea are the Obama supporters and the botards that continue to support this moron. The only ones that could possibly benefit from this piece of Obama-Pelosi trash are the entitlements groupies. Illegal immigrants continue to collect benefits that citizens are not eligible for, unless you are on welfare, collecting food stamps and a gererational entitlements grabber. Wake up CT, your comments or stand on the Obama administration have become a joke. It’s been 2 1/2 years and these morons still can’t pass a budget, let alone decide the nations healthcare options. Currently this country is more in debt than ever before.Yet, Obama wants to borrow more money and increase the debt ceiling. If I spend more money than I make, I would be broke in no time, like the U.S. government. I serioulsy doubt that I I had a 40% debt ratio that I could borrow anymore money and go deeper in debt. This idiot is single handley destroying this country for his own benefits, and idiots like you, CT can’t wait to help him do it. When is enough, enough?

Reality

June 29th, 2011
6:27 pm

7 shootings in one night in Metro Atlanta – Dekalb & South Fulton. It’s been reported that all were blacks.

Too bad the thugs reproduce faster than they kill each other off….

B Cosby

June 29th, 2011
6:35 pm

Ya’ know CT, on second thought the death panel may be a good idea. For example, are you here illegally, getting kidney treatments? Sorry, you die. Are you a gererational welfare recipient, need a liver transplant from drinking dem Colt 45’s? Sorry, you die. Are you in prison with a life sentence for murder, rape, etc… and need some heart surgery? Sorry, you die. Are you an illegal migrant worker harvesting onions and get your arm cut off? Looks like you bleed to death, no need for a death panel on that one. Perhaps you have become a washed up pulitzer prize winning political columist, get fired and lose all benefits, become deathly ill, sorry you, we’ll let the forum make that decision.

RGB

June 29th, 2011
6:41 pm

With employers projected to drop 80-110 million workers from the insurance plans these employees now have (because of ObamaCare), it makes sense that some of these folks won’t be treated for illnesses they will surely contract.

To express it in a way that seems to make sense to you, some of these people will be “dead”.

Joddy

June 29th, 2011
6:58 pm

In all my years of reading comments like these, I don’t think I’ve ever read so much ignorant, racist crap. I know, I know … everybody’s sense of white privilege is deeply offended by having a black guy in the White House. The U.S. health care system is not about health care, it’s about money: if you have money, you get care; if you don’t have money, you die. Period.

Matt

June 29th, 2011
7:05 pm

Rationing is not the same an not being able to afford a procedure. Why is it that people believe they are entitled to a service (any service) regardless of their ability to pay. That point is always lost in every heath care discussion. The statement
“you only get the health care that you or your insurance company will pay for. In other words, health care is already “rationed.””
is simply not true. You can pay for it out of your own pocket. If the government is in charge of making health care decisions, some procedures will not be available at any price.

B Cosby

June 29th, 2011
7:07 pm

Joddy, is there a black guy in the White House? I understand his mother is white. Why do you say he is black? Tossing out the race card are you?

The truth

June 29th, 2011
7:29 pm

Reality
June 29th, 2011
6:27 pm

7 shootings in one night in Metro Atlanta – Dekalb & South Fulton. It’s been reported that all were blacks.

Too bad the thugs reproduce faster than they kill each other off….

# Casualties in Afghanistan:
Afghan troops killed [1] 8,587
Afghan troops seriously injured [2] 25,761
Afghan civilians killed [3] 8,813
Afghan civilians seriously injured [4] 15,863
U.S. troops killed [5] 1,140
U.S. troops seriously injured [6] 3,420
Other coalition troops killed [7] 772
Other coalition troops seriously injured [8] 2,316
Contractors killed [9] 298
Contractors seriously injured [10] 2,428
Journalists killed [11] 19
Journalists seriously injured [12] unknown
Total killed in Afghanistan 19,629
Total injured in Afghanistan 48,644

# Casualties in Iraq:
Iraqi troops killed [13] 30,000
Iraqi troops seriously injured [14] 90,000
Iraqi civilians killed [15] 864,531
Iraqi civilians seriously injured [16] 1,556,156
U.S. troops killed [17] 4,414
U.S. troops seriously injured [18] 31,882
Other coalition troops killed [19] 318
Other coalition troops seriously injured [20] 2,296
Contractors killed [21] 933
Contractors seriously injured [22] 10,569
Journalists killed [23] 142
Journalists seriously injured [24] unknown
Total killed in Iraq 900,338
Total injured in Iraq 1,690,903

When will the WHITE MAN be stopped…

The truth

June 29th, 2011
7:51 pm

1. White people have a very short memory, I did not want Obama to get elected, i know the history of the WHITE man, I knew they were going to forget about Bush and blame the Black man..
2. Republican Presidents, beginning with Reagan, are the ONLY Presidents responsible for overall increases in the national debt since World War II.
3. Obama got stuck with this accumulated debt, and was then required to take on more debt in order to extend the Bush tax cuts, to stimulate the economy, and to bail out Wall Street.
4.Clinton knocked the debt down, Bush ran it up. The differential between the two presidents is 36.6% of GDP, that is $5.307 trillion, a very big number.
5.Obama did not run up the debt, he inherited from his predecessor the greatest recession in almost 80 years. The forward momentum of the recession ratcheted up the debt from 53.5% of GDP to 60% in Obama’s first year.
6. Bush brainwashed WHITES and started 2 senseless wars where thousands of WHITE people have died, and I really believe that WHITE people are ok with it!

White people why do your people hate BLACKS so much, a old wise man told me that it is due to the “WHITE man’s angry small penis syndrome..I have been told by several WHITE women that it is true!

bxnyc

June 29th, 2011
8:12 pm

I finally get it, the trolls who inhabit ms. tuckers blog are scared shytless, they dont want progressive people moving into the state so they whine complain and obfuscate. Newsflash, the train has left the station, you’re not going to keep the south mired in bigotry forever. I know, you’ll claim that its not bigotry that motivates you and once again yell about being called racist if you oppose the president on any issue. That is shallow self absorbed thinking. and you know it. Oh,your smoke & mirrors might last until 2012, but once the president is reelected then you will see the ground start to shift under your feet and the protected south once it begins to understand its intractable position will not work will eventually be dragged kicking and screaming into the real world. Go ahead, throw your undocumented unsubstantiated barbs at me. You will only prove me right when you spew vitriol without fact based debate.

myother

June 29th, 2011
9:00 pm

When congress starts using it as their health case insurance of choice then so will I.

Rafe Hollister

June 29th, 2011
9:06 pm

The Commander in Chief of the war on the wealthy, aka Barry, should just appoint a czar to decide if we live or die, who needs a full panel.

Obamacare was designed to fail anyway: so, the dems will have an excuse to come back and whine for single payer European type insurance. We have to remove this failure from the WH.

mmm, mmm, mmm, Barack the LIAR Obama - BEND OVER, Here comes the CHANGE!

June 29th, 2011
9:17 pm

Tax payer funded health care for those that didn’t/don’t pay into the system is BUNK. What did people do BEFORE Medicare/Medicade? Hmmmm…..

mmm, mmm, mmm, Barack the LIAR Obama - BEND OVER, Here comes the CHANGE!

June 29th, 2011
9:20 pm

bxnyc

What are you babbling about? Your posts are so laughable, I only hope YOU are not that stupid. A mind is a terrible thing to waste. Oh, wait that’s from the Negro College Fund.

Bob

June 29th, 2011
9:21 pm

granny godzilla

In order to trust “experts” you have to accept that they know more about a certain subject than we do.

That seems to particularly dificult for the right.

Sad for those folks – that their egos overtake common sense

Granny, I guess you are siding with Tucker over Dr. Gingrey ?

Kamchak

June 29th, 2011
9:50 pm

As Nancy Pelosi said, ‘we have to sign it before we see what is in it”.

Nope that’s not what she said, sport.

If you’re gonna use quotation marks I think it’s imperative to get the quote right.

Correction

June 29th, 2011
9:57 pm

“We have to pass the bill so you can find out what is in it”

TrishaDishaWarEagle

June 30th, 2011
12:48 am

CT is a huge embarrassing failure as an editorial writer (and as a rational thinker) but then again, so is the entire AJC. That is why she was shuffled out to DC..you can’t just fire a black female , afterall..too much red tape.

zeke

June 30th, 2011
1:37 am

CT, would you please just go away and leave the rest of us to enjoy our great Conservatism!!!

ken

June 30th, 2011
6:51 am

And I’ll bet that you supported releasing oil from our strategic supply. Didn’t work. . Oil is at 94.59.

GB

June 30th, 2011
7:08 am

ANSWER FOR BOBBY:

“Can someone explain to me what is the difference between the government rationing health care and the insurance companies rationing health care? Either way health care is rationed. In the case of insurance companies it is rationed for the benefit of their CEO. We have 1600 plus persons on the ADAP list waiting for access to life saving HIV drugs. Where is Gingrey’s concern about rationing their health care by the State of Georgia.”

The difference is this: there are many insurance companies. If you don’t like the way your insurer conducts business you can pick another one. But there is only one federal government. You can pick another one.

Tommy Maddox

June 30th, 2011
7:15 am

Old news – future reality.

Wiie

June 30th, 2011
7:18 am

The bunk mountain is that Tucker is still arguing that Obamacare won’t lead to rationing. OF COURSE it will the people who are charged with running it are rationing advocates. Rationing means that there will be less care for old people. Tucker is quite simply lying or an outright fool.

It was the “”honorable” democrats who showed granny being pushed over the cliff. The democrat plan is to let medicare go broke.

Pund-it

June 30th, 2011
7:21 am

This must be your latest essay from night classes at the Pundit School? Thanks for sharing as if you had keen insght. First lesson fron the pundit school, anybody can be a pundit!

Remember, at the AJC: “You too can be a Pundit”

GB

June 30th, 2011
7:27 am

ANSWER FOR IGNORANT CONSERVATIVE:

Under the Affordable Healthcare Act:

-Everyone who walks into a hospital seeking medical treatment will be required to have insurance.(Last year GA taxpayers spent $500 million dollars paying the medical bills of uninsured sick people. HELLO??) WILL EVERYONE WALKING INTO A HOSPITAL BE REQUIRED TO HAVE INSURANCE? I RATHER DOUBT IT. THERE IS A MANDATE, BUT DO YOU REALLY THINK THE GOVERNMENT WILL ENFORCE IT? AND IF YOU DISOBEY THE LAW AND FAIL TO BUY INSURANCE, CAN THE HOSPITAL DENY CARE? I WOULD BET MY LIFE THE ANSWER IS NO. WE WILL CONTINUE TO HAVE THE PROBLEM WITH UNCOMPENSATED CARE.

- Insurers must offer the same premium to all applicants to the same age and sex regardless of existing conditions. YOU THINK THIS IS A GOOD THING??? A SICK 60 YEAR OLD SHOULD PAY THE SAME AS A HEALTHY 25 YEAR OLD? AND YOU DON’T SEE THE PROBLEM THAT IS CREATED BY REQUIRING INSURERS TO PROVIDE COVERAGE (UNDER THE SAME TERMS AND CONDITIONS) TO SOMEONE WHO IS ALREADY SICK AS TO SOMEONE WHO BUYS INSURANCE WHEN HE IS HEALTHY? CAN YOU BUY FIRE INSURANCE AFTER THE FIRE STARTS? CAN YOU BUY LIFE INSURANCE WHEN YOU ARE DEAD?

- The plan removes all annual and lifetime coverage caps. THE PRESIDENT CALLED THESE CAPS “ARBITRARY.” A PROFOUND LIE, AS THERE IS NOTHING ARBITRARY ABOUT THEM. THE CAPS ARE SIMPLY THE AMOUNT OF INSURANCE YOU BUY. IF THERE ARE NO CAPS, EVERYONE IS REQUIRED TO BUY AN INFINITE AMOUNT OF INSURANCE. IT DOESN’T TAKE AN ESPECIALLY KEEN MIND TO UNDERSTAND THAT MORE INSURANCE COSTS MORE MONEY.

- Some health insurance benefits are “essential” coverage for which there is no co-pay. AGAIN, MORE INSURANCE WILL COSTS MORE MONEY.

- Dependants can remain on their parents’ policies until age 26. THE ONES WHO STAY ON THEIR PARENTS’ POLICY WILL BE THE ONES WHO HAVE MEDICAL CONDITIONS. THIS WILL MAKE THEIR PARENTS COVERAGE COST MORE.

- Insurers can’t drop policy holders when they get sick. NOTE THE WORD “WHEN.” THE PRESIDENT USED IT TOO. NOT “BECAUSE,” BUT “WHEN.” DOES THIS MEAN THAT IF YOU ARE SICK YOU CAN’T BE DROPPED? SUPPOSE YOU STOP PAYING YOUR PREMIUM? SO YOU AND OBAMA WILL PROBABLY SAY “NO, WE REALLY MEAN ‘BECAUSE.’ NOT ‘WHEN’ BUT ‘BECAUSE.’” OK, THAT GETS US TO THIS POINT: DO INSURERS DROP PEOPLE ‘BECAUSE’ THEY GET SICK? THE ANSWER IS NO. THAT WOULD BE A VIOLATION OF THE CONTRACT AND MORE STATE LAWS THAN YOU CAN COUNT. I KNOW PEOPLE WHO HAVE BEEN SELLING HEALTH INSURANCE FOR DECADES WHO TELL ME THEY KNOW OF NO INCIDENT WHEN AN INSURER CANCELLED A POLICY BECAUSE THE INSURED GOT SICK.

- Maximum annual deductibles are $2,000 per individual and $4,000 per family. MORE INSURANCE = MORE MONEY.

- Approved preventive care and check-ups don’t require co-pays. MORE INSURANCE = MORE MONEY.

- Medicare is expanded to small, rural hospitals and facilities. ??? IS THIS NEW? MEDICARE COVERS CARE PROVIDED IN SMALL, RURAL HOSPITALS AND FACILITIES ALREADY.

And these things are bad because….????

BBG

June 30th, 2011
7:41 am

I think healthcare rationing IS old news. Cynthia Tucker is…..RIGHT!!

The insurance lobby t’ain’t never gonna let us have health; or care; or doctorin’ or our free needles, or nuthin. The only thing4us2do is something really really stupid to get even-steven. I say we all demand our free needles and break the system. They’ll never come up with 300 million needles, man. Then we’ll take over like the French did when they demanded their free croissants, and were offered cake instead!

Who’s with me? LETS DO IT!!!!

carlosgvv

June 30th, 2011
8:14 am

Healthcare in this country is an entirely for profit enterprise. That is why we spend more per capita for healthcare than any other Country in the world. Doctors, Hospitals and drug companies will give as little in services and products as possible and charge as much money as possible. They want to maximize profits and minimize costs. Until this system changes entirely, don’t look for any relief in healthcare costs. Look for steadly increasing costs and a constant stream of lies from the Republicans.

Jethro

June 30th, 2011
8:26 am

Out of curiosity, can anyone explain why health care costs keep rising so disproportionately over the inflation level?

Drifter

June 30th, 2011
8:56 am

Health care costs keep rising because the Congress is owned by the drug companies, the health insurance companies and the AMA. Those 3 entities are the reason we pay more than any country in the world, we don’t cover everyone and we get poor results.

Duane

June 30th, 2011
9:07 am

The doctor is driving a Lexus because he invested in college, earned good grades, invested in medical school, earned good grades there, and worked hard at his residency. I hate class envy.

lovelyliz

June 30th, 2011
9:18 am

I remember when the Medicare Part D prescirpotion plan was passed under Geroge W Bush and the government was forbidden from negotiating presiption prices. If any corporate health insurance company that offers prescription coverage can and does negotiate drug prices for their customers, why can’t the feds do it for those on Medicare? Perhaps it’s because big Pharma has invested their politcal $$$$$$ better than the US taxpayers and the AARP.

GT

June 30th, 2011
9:20 am

To see an educated man as a Republican to me is a scary thing. It is like admitting you believe in ghost. People in the south have sold out their God given intelligence to be popular. You can’t be both in the south. You almost have to take an oath to suppose stupidity and joining the Republican Party is a test of loyalty. There is always a test for that down here. Not loyalty to all Americans but to certain Americans. Been that way for a long time.

Owl

June 30th, 2011
9:36 am

Death panels in the US will cause an export of our best health care citizens to other countries. Make sure your passports are in order.

Simple but true

June 30th, 2011
9:56 am

atlmom – don’t you have a breast cancer walk to do or some pink stuff to buy? That’s still the en-vouge charity amongst your friends right? BTW nobody cares about your ugly kids but you, so put a sock in it.

Halftrack

June 30th, 2011
10:38 am

CT; The vouchers it creates would buy a policy that covers only a third of the care that Medicare currently delivers. Have you read the Obummercare bill. About 2/3 of the bill is not needed. It is a way to control your life and the length of it. The IPAB is “expected” to be guided by comparative-effectiveness studies that show which procedures are both less costly and effective. When government runs things you are only a number – - – a valueless individual – - – only seen as a cost factor to the State. Just think about the cruel and unjust punishment this is on our most vulnerable and helpless people? Where is your moral fiber for the common good of your fellow citizen???

SKH

June 30th, 2011
10:54 am

Cynthia, here’s what you and a whole lot of Congressional representatives (both Republican and Democratic) don’t get: coming up with a very costly theoretical “solution” to problems without first rigorously testing their viability is INANE! You almost always wind up throwing money – and a lot of it – down the drain. Lawyers (who make up the vast majority of our Congress) typically do such things because by training and experience, they operate in a closed LEGAL system and really don’t understand how to solve real world problems except possibly their own. People like trained engineers and research doctors don’t make these kind of incredibly foolish mistakes because, through experience, they understand just how costly it is to implement an idea that turns out to be half-baked. I’m a software engineer with two English degrees and I didn’t understand this myself until I had worked as an engineer for some years and saw money and jobs lost due to acting on untested ideas. Mark my words: the “unintended consequences” of a multi-trillion dollar program like the recently passed healthcare bill is going to cost trillions more before portions or all of it are eventually scrapped. And the people who enacted it will be exempt from prosecution or lawsuits for hubris and ignorance. One should NEVER, NEVER rush to implement a multi-trillion dollar program of ANY sort – we must be relatively certain it is viable before spending that kind of money.

carlosgvv

June 30th, 2011
11:10 am

Duane

That doctor you refer to is driving a Lexus and getting rich on the backs of the people, most of whom don’t have the intellect to graduate from college with medical, enginering and other degrees which virtually guarentee high paying jobs. Average Americans are hurting because of huge medical costs and you don’t care because that Doctor worked hard and earned good grades in medical school? Spoken like a true right-wing Republican lug nut.

Gator Joe

June 30th, 2011
11:48 am

Cynthia,
The President (now, and for the next four years) and the Democrats have done more to address the problem of access to affordable healthcare and the uninsured than the Republicans did at any time when they controlled the White House or either house of congress. While the President’s and the Democratic effort is not perfect (I’d would rather see single payer), it is far exceeds the Republican effort which is nothing.

By the way, I don’t hear of large numbers of Canadians, or Europeans for that matter, emigrating to the US because of healthcare.

So long as maximum profit is the aim of the healthcare industry (Doctors and big insurance companies included) in the US, then the healthcare industry, their lobbyists, and the politicians they own, will control what healthcare we receive and what it costs.

Jack

June 30th, 2011
12:02 pm

This is another liberal chant from a member of the liberal mob.

carlosgvv

June 30th, 2011
12:45 pm

Gator Joe

Absolutely true. And, you can be sure we will recieve as little healthcare as possible for as much money as they can possibly charge us.

Drifter

June 30th, 2011
4:22 pm

The Republican dopes I helped elect have ignored health care. At least the President tried to address the issue. I give him credit for that. If he could have gotten more of his fellow Democrats to get with the program, he could have done a lot more. As it is, health care will continue to pillage way too much from the American economy while delivering mediocre results…and leaving some of its citizens out of the equation entirely.

quod erat demonstrandum

June 30th, 2011
5:53 pm

The argument has never been answered.

Why does Obama-care have to disrupt the health care of everyone, and not just impact those that need the help?

Any large company can get great group rates with just a few thousand workers enrolling. If it is ten’s of thousands, even better rates. Make it a million and you are in great shape. But, that is not enough for the feds. They have to interfere with health care plans already being provided by companies (a large number say they will drop employer health care packages) , unions will drop their policies as soon as the government takes over, leaving a greater amount of the population dependent on the government – a total screw up os the highest order.