Step One: Can we all agree health care is rationed today?

I think one of the problems in conducting the health-care debate — shoot, in conducting almost any debate, regardless of the subject these days — is the absence of common ground and common understanding.

So as an experiment, let’s take just one piece of the issue and see if we have an agreement on the facts:

Does everyone understand and accept that health care is rationed today, right now, for almost everyone who doesn’t have access to tens fo millions of dollars they could spend if necessary on medical bills?

When an insurance company denies coverage because of a pre-existing condition, it is rationing health care. When it “rescinds” coverage — telling a client with a serious, expensive medical issue that it is canceling his or her policy — it is rationing health care. When an insurance company refuses to pay for a particular procedure or medicine, it is rationing health care. When uninsured people are turned away from hospitals and doctors’ offices, health care is being rationed. (And if anybody thinks that doesn’t happen, remember those long lines in Los Angeles when doctors offered free care to the uninsured. That was a lot of suppressed demand for health care that people could not acquire through other means.)

Once we accept that health care is being rationed at every turn in the current system, we can talk honestly about the fact that it would also be rationed under the system proposed by President Obama. Some current means of rationing would be abolished as counterproductive — you couldn’t be denied coverage for pre-existing conditions, and coverage couldn’t be withdrawn or rescinded if you actually got sick.

Other means of rationing would be enhanced. Medical data would be aggregated and studied to determine which procedures produced the best outcomes, and which do not. That’s a cost-control and efficiency method practiced in one version or another in almost every major industry, and was endorsed by a lot of conservatives until Obama incorporated it into his plan, at which point it became evidence of — gasp! — rationing.

Health care is rationed today, and it will always be rationed. The issue is whether it will be rationed rationally, so to speak.

214 comments Add your comment

Michael H. Smith

August 22nd, 2009
9:29 am

Jay, our government doesn’t have access to tens of millions of dollars they could spend if necessary on medical bills either.

9 Trillion Reasons Health Care(Obumer’s Public Option) May Be Dead
Drowned in red ink

http://www.nbcchicago.com/news/politics/9-Trillion-Reasons-Health-Care-May-Be-Dead-54011587.html

I’d say, by the looks of things, healthcare is not all that will be subject to rationing.

Taxpayer

August 22nd, 2009
9:37 am

Our government has access to hundreds of billions of dollars that could be allocated to healthcare. Six hundred and seventy billion annually alone goes to the DoD.

Is health care rationed now? Yes, and if you are not trying to deceive yourself and/or others, then that should be your answer.

booger

August 22nd, 2009
9:42 am

Agreed. However for many of us the issue we have with the health care bill as it stands today is not the plan design or even if there is a govt. option. It’s financial.

Our country is out of money. Medicare and social security could go bust within ten years and the admin. wants to implement another huge entitlement program. Maybe some people buy the financial explanations the white house and congress are putting forward, but I think not many.

If this program were pared down to directly address the problems of cost and accessibility, with a clear and rational explaination of how it would be financied, it would get much more support.

N-GA

August 22nd, 2009
9:51 am

When the problem is money, the answer is relatively simple. Lawmakers should create a verrrry long list. On one side is healthcare. On the other side is every other line item in the federal budget. Like the wingnuts always say, let’s have an up-or-down vote on each line item…healthcare or some other expenditure. That way we can see which lawmakers think that a bridge-to-nowhere is more important than helthcare.

I suspect that we will fund healthcare easily!

Finn McCool

August 22nd, 2009
10:05 am

In today’s Rolling Stone, Matt Taibbi has a really good expose on health care reform and how the Democrats are screwing it all up.

Makes me want to throw up.

BigDawg

August 22nd, 2009
10:06 am

Jay,you are trying to twist and confuse the argument. First, yes private insurance does ration care by denying some services that are not allowed by one’s healthcare policy but so does the government with Medicare and Medicaid. The important point you are intentionally leaving out of your question is that government acts in an arbitrary manner. By arbitrary I am referring to government having unlimited power. Private insurance works to make a profit for their shareholders. In today’s climate making a profit is bad. Healthcare insurers are not making money hand over fist like some other industries and even non-profit medical institutions make money they just do not call it a profit. I do not want government arbitrarily (read tyrannical) making decisions on my behalf when it comes to sensitive matters like this. Have you ever dealt with the IRS, Social Security? I have and it is a bureacratical nightmare compared to anything privately run! Name one thing the gov’t does well. I would rather deal with Aetna who I have insurance with and they are a pleasure to work eventhough they do not get everything right. They are a whole lot easier to deal with than the gov’t. Yes, I know they promise no takeover of the current system, but with good intentions the outcome is never truly foreseen and we have no idea what is in the 1000 plus pages of all the different bills floating around Congress.

Finn McCool

August 22nd, 2009
10:07 am

Without the Public Option or the Single-Payer system, we might as well just forget the whole thing because there won’t be enough cost savings to cover the 47 million.

Just leave it alone.

number1ninja

August 22nd, 2009
10:11 am

Government does things fine when it’s not run by republicans who want to “starve the beast”. Cut the stupid military budget, repeal Raygun’s tax cuts and there you go. Every sixty years or so we have to go through this crap because people get complacent and greedy.

nana

August 22nd, 2009
10:27 am

Oh yeah let’s cut the military budget, isn’t that the ONE thing that the Feds are to do? Protect us. Let’s not have a military at all and then we won’t need healthcare because we will no longer be around. Let’s have another entitlement program, I think we need at least a dozen more czars that answer to no one. That’s the ticket. What a bunch of fools.

Wyld Byll Hyltnyr

August 22nd, 2009
10:32 am

Jay, our blog contributors couldn’t even agree that the sky is blue today.

TW

August 22nd, 2009
10:39 am

number1ninja – very well said. Another term for ‘complacent and greedy’ is ‘childish.’

And, sadly, the only way a very small child comes to undertand that a burner produces heat, is to put his hand on it.

Ideally, good will find it’s way through this forrest of insurance/drug company deceit, and put together a plan that is truly good for the people. However, because the complacency of today is paramount to any we’ve seen in this country, I’m not so sure. Add to that the bumbling efforts of the righteously motivated ball carrier, and I’m afraid we’ve got a loser.

And should the child be fooled into accepting the status quo, I’m all for laying out some accountability. Turn the redneck meth head trash away the next time he totes uninsured mama to the ER because of the cig induced mass in her chest…tell him to get Saxby on the cell…

NRB

August 22nd, 2009
10:41 am

At this point, I’d be just fine with government healthcare.

As long as they agree to 100% ELIMINATE the following:

ELIMINATE ALL foreign aid.

ELIMINATE Social Security.

ELIMINATE the IRS via placement of a 10% flat tax.

ELIMINATE the golden healthcare that members of congress and others in government enjoy, they can have the same govt. healthcare the rest of us get.

Cut the salary of every single government employee in existence by 50% (if they complain, they’re just being greedy).

Unti then, there is no debate. There is no discussion. Government has NO RIGHT to meddle with healthcare…and that fact alone renders any and all pro-government healthcare points null and void.

stands for decibels

August 22nd, 2009
10:44 am

Step Two: Can we admit that a lot of civil lawsuits–which the whole “TORT REFORM” distraction tends to play off of–wouldn’t ever happened if people weren’t terrified at the prospects of simply paying their medical expenses?

N-GA

August 22nd, 2009
10:46 am

Jay,

Going back to my question to you about the Lockerbie bomber, let me phrase my question to you more precisely: Where is your outrage about (former) Lt. William Calley walking around free after leading his troops in the slaughter of more than 200 Vietnamese civilians, then serving 3 years of house arrest before being given a Presidential Pardon?

It seems that many Americans condone criminal behavior when it suits them, yet express anger when “the other guy” gets leniency. Many people even sided with Calley because he said he was acting on orders from his senior officer. Of course that argument didn’t help the German and Japanese soldiers who were tried for war crimes.

Makes me want to puke!

Wyld Byll Hyltnyr

August 22nd, 2009
10:52 am

N-GA
August 22nd, 2009
10:46 am

You, as with all liberal spin, forget the most important fact about the circumstances surrounding the Calley circumstances. Charlie was a despicable animal that used villagers to attack our brave warrior angels. Had Charlie worn uniforms there would have been no My Lai.

Also, I might ask, if you want to enforce uniform standards of decency, why not blast (or better disqualify) Obumbler for consorting with (in fact starting his policital career upon the coattails of) that pencil-necked animal, Bill Ayres.

I Report/ Vast White Wing Conspirator (-: You Whine )-:

August 22nd, 2009
10:55 am

No one is denied coverage under the current system, no one, you could crash land your space ship from the planet moonbat next to Grady, they will extract you from the wreckage and treat your injuries.

If you have a “pre existing” condition and you are from the country of Fever Swampland, you can report to the nearest emergency room and they will provide you with health care.

Why does the lib conjure up images of people being tossed out of hospitals into the streets where they languish in agony until they die, like this is Great Britain or Canada that we are talking about here?

Desperation setting in bookman?

If the government barges in and postalizes the health care industry then yes, we will no longer have a system that protects those who have fallen through the cracks, we will only have a system that is controlled by a mindless and totally uncaring bureaucracy.

Which would be the ultimate rationing.

Dave R.

August 22nd, 2009
11:00 am

Yes, Jay, health care is rationed by insurance companies today, which is why, if the government takes over health care and no longer drops people when they get sick nor stops covering for pre-existing conditions, public health care costs will go UP with Hope & Change’s plan, not go down as he claims. And I’d rather duke it out with an insurance company with a doctor on my side, than try to duke it out with my government and a bureaucrat if I have an issue.

Of course, the government can just print more useless money and go further into debt, but what’s another trillion dollars when you’re about to go $9 trillion in debt? Right?

Oh, and great idea, Taxcheat. Drive us further into debt, AND leave us defenseless. BTW, your numbers don’t exactly add up. Estimated cost of government health care = over $1 trillion per year. Total DOD budget = $670 billion per year.

Did they ever teach math at one of those four schools in which you allegedly got your degrees?

Taxpayer

August 22nd, 2009
11:15 am

Wyld Byll,

The sky is not blue.

Dave R.

August 22nd, 2009
11:21 am

And BTW, Jay, it’s nice to see you finally off the talking points of the libs and Hope & Change by admitting that there WILL be rationing in a government plan.

They say the first step towards realizing you have a problem is admitting that you have a problem.

So, does this mean you’re admitting that Hope & Change and the supporters of this plan have lied to us? Or are they merely ignorant of the issues?

Tonto

August 22nd, 2009
11:24 am

As a true liberal, I disagree with Finn McCool. I believe that the public option is too limiting. The better option is a public funded and regulated cooperative group. This group would be regulated by the government to be nonprofit, cover all procedures and medicine that Medicare covers, be restricted to the 4% administrative cost that exists for Medicare compared to 30% administrative costs of private insurers, and restrict executive total compensation below Obama’s presidential pay. A national group like ACORN could offer this health care insurance as a community cooperative group and be an advocate on other issues important to the 44 million uninsured. They could require that in order to be a member, the uninsured provide a valid voter registration. Like AARP they could profit from merchandising to their membership. The public option is not that flexible. Maybe the coop option could have support from both sides.

AmVet

August 22nd, 2009
11:27 am

I always love that dufus argument that the government cannot do anything right and “…I would rather deal with Aetna who I have insurance with and they are a pleasure to work even though they do not get everything right.”

AETNA DOES NOT GET EVERYTHING RIGHT???

This is the clearest corollary I’ve ever seen to the Bush Excuse Principle!

Under the current system, hundreds of billions – as in $XXX,000,000,000.00 – EVERY year go into Aetna’s and the other robber baron’s overhead!

And your flat-earth heads being in the sand doesn’t diminish the reality one iota that there are innumerable UNNECESSARY and FRAUDULENT billing/administrative costs for health-care providers, and HUGE profits and ENORMOUS salaries at large HMOs and other health-care companies.

Being you economic mental midgets and fascist lovers cannot, or more accurately, will not grasp the obvious fact that these imperious, protected crooks and paperwork shuffling bunglers intentionally collude to drive already high costs up astronomically.

And you buffoons just sit there and shuck and grin for the very people who would gladly f&ck you, given half a chance.

Brilliant.

The best care in America?

You already know, don’t you, conned. You just don’t want to admit it.

The VA.

Yes, the much and long-maligned Veterans Administration has become the highest-quality healthcare provider in the United States. (I can personally attest to this.) And it is a blueprint for salvaging America’s own horribly troubled healthcare system.

And you Corporatists Uber Alles are agog that a government bureaucracy, working with little notice, is setting the standard for best practices and cost reduction while the private sector is lagging horrifically in both areas.

One day, much too late for you hopefully, but maybe for your kids or grandkids, people inthis country will wake up and see that market forces work to LOWER quality and RAISE prices in this “healthcare” scam.

But then why you conned ruin your perfect streak about being wrong about every major issue?

You won’t…

N.J.

August 22nd, 2009
11:34 am

Two other polls, most recent. NBC poll shows that 60 percent of the public wants either a complete new health care system or a major overhaul of the existing one. Only 7 percent believe nothing should be done.

Thinking some more about the issue of health care: Do you think the American health care system needs a complete overhaul, major reform, minor reform, or is there no need for change?”

.

Complete
Overhaul Major
Reform Minor
Reform No Need
For Change Unsure
% % % % %
8/15-17/09

Complete Overhaul 21 %

Major Reform 39%

Minor reform 31%

No need for change 7%

Not sure 2%

http://www.pollingreport.com/health.htm

Next, the latest Rasmussen shows that support for health reform collapses if there is no public option. That is, the majority of Americans seem to only support health reform if it includes a public option:

Without Public Option, Enthusiasm for Health Care Reform, Especially Among Democrats, Collapses

ust 34% of voters nationwide support the health care reform plan proposed by President Obama and congressional Democrats if the so-called “public option” is removed. The latest Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey shows that 57% oppose the plan if it doesn’t include a government-run health insurance plan to compete with private insurers.
Last week, Rasmussen Reports tracking found that support for the Congressional plan was at 42%.
While the tracking question did not specifically mention the public option, it referred to the bill proposed by the president and congressional Democrats now working its way through Congress. All of the congressional committees that had passed reform legislation included a government health insurance plan. Therefore, it is reasonable to compare those results with the current polling to measure the potential impact of dropping the public option.

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

Across the entire spectrum of voters, there is more support for the legislation WITH a public option than there is without it.

I Report/ Vast White Wing Conspirator (-: You Whine )-:

August 22nd, 2009
11:37 am

There were an awful lot of “cowards” at the Cobb County gun show this morning, although I wasn’t stupid enough to call any of them that.

getalife

August 22nd, 2009
11:37 am

Wrong.

Anybody can walk into an emergency room and get treated.

Yes, it is socialized.

Dave R.

August 22nd, 2009
11:45 am

Yes, NJ, and as long as were are being guided by polls, instead of leadership principles, let’s also note that over 80% agree that THIS plan being touted is not wanted.

And let’s also agree that of the 96% of people in the U.S. who have health insurance, 82% are very satisfied or satisfied with their health care.

So let’s scrap this abortion of a bill, and address the 4% who don’t have health insurance, shall we?

Dave R.

August 22nd, 2009
11:47 am

And AmVet,let’s all agree that much of the costs of providing health insurance of all types is largely due to . . . wait for it . . . GOVERNMENT MANDATES!

Get a clue.

Taxpayer

August 22nd, 2009
11:49 am

A few tidbits from cbpp.org:

In fiscal year 2008, the federal government spent $3 trillion, or 21% of GDP. More than $2.5 trillion was financed by federal tax revenues. The budget deficit of $459 billion was financed by borrowing.

In 2008, 21% of the budget, or $625 billion, went to pay for defense and security-related international activities.

Another 21%, or $617 billion, went to Social Security, which provided retirement benefits averaging $1,041 per month to 35 million retired workers (and dependents of retirees). Social Security also provided survivors’ benefits to 6.4 million surviving children and spouses of deceased workers and disability benefits to 9.1 million disabled workers.

Medicare, Medicaid, and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) accounted for 20%, or $599 billion. Nearly two-thirds of this amount, or $391 billion, went to Medicare, which provides health coverage to around 45 million people who are over the age of 65 or have disabilities. The remainder of this category funds Medicaid and CHIP, which in a typical month provide health care or long-term care to more than 45 million low-income children, parents, elderly people, and people with disabilities. Both Medicaid and CHIP require matching payments from the states.

About 11% of the federal budget, or $313 billion, supported programs that provide aid (other than health insurance or Social Security benefits) to individuals and families facing hardship. These programs include: the refundable portion of the earned-income and child tax credits, which assist low- and moderate-income working families through the tax code; programs that provide cash payments to eligible individuals or households, including Supplemental Security Income for the elderly or disabled poor and unemployment insurance; various forms of in-kind assistance for low-income families and individuals, including food stamps, school meals, low-income housing assistance, child-care assistance, and assistance in meeting home energy bills; and various other programs such as those that aid abused and neglected children. Based on an earlier study, these programs lifted more than 12 million Americans out of poverty in 2005 and reduced the depth of poverty for another 25 million people.

About 8% of the budget, or $253 billion, was paid toward interest on the national debt.

The remaining 19 percent of federal spending goes to support a wide variety of other public services. These include providing health care and other benefits to veterans and retirement benefits to retired federal employees, assuring safe food and drugs, protecting the environment, and investing in education, scientific and medical research, and basic infrastructure such as roads, bridges, and airports.

So, get on the phone, pull out the note paper, log on to the websites, whatever. Just get up off your lazy a$$es and tell your representatives what you want cut. Demand tax relief. Pull out your 1040 as reference so you can highlight your real concern. Do it now. Do it for your children. They’re waiting to hear from each and every one of you.

Soothsayer

August 22nd, 2009
11:53 am

Two points then I’m out of here:

1) Georgians pay $1.7 billion a year in health care premiums to cover the uninsured
2) The United States military budget is more than the budget for ALL of the other nations on Earth COMBINED!

Brad Steel

August 22nd, 2009
11:55 am

Well, duh. What buffoon tries to make the argument that it is not?

Don’t believe Jay? The read this article from a unassailable source, a professor of bioethics at Princeton University.

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/07/19/magazine/19healthcare-t.html?ref=magazine

Soothsayer

August 22nd, 2009
12:02 pm

George:

You’re speaking tongue-in-cheek, right?

SORRY. YOU’RE SPEAKING TONGUE-IN CHEEK, RIGHT?

jconservative

August 22nd, 2009
12:08 pm

JaY Bookman
“Does everyone understand and accept that health care is rationed today…”

I Report/ Vast White Wing Conspirator (-: You Whine )-:
August 22nd, 2009 10:55 am
“No one is denied coverage under the current system…”

Both of the above statements are correct. But that is not the problem that exist today. The system we have today is a hodgepodge of Federal, state & local regulations that is the most inefficient health care delivery system on the planet. We waste trillions of dollars every year. We can cover every person now in the country for 1/2 of what we now spending. Every other country in the world does.

The problem is that no one is addressing the inefficient squandering of trillions of dollars on health care. Until that problem is addressed I will vote no.

Bud Wiser

August 22nd, 2009
12:15 pm

No.

We cannot agree.

Health care is bought and paid for, and the amount (rationing) is on a sliding scale commensurate with the capability of the patient to pay.

Therefore, your basic premise is flawed – not as flawed as the idiot in the WH, but flawed nonetheless, ergo, end of discussion.

Top 25 preseason college football: Gators #1, Penn State #9, Notre Dame (??????????) #23.

At least the Irish won’t have far to fall to be out of it, as they should be anyway.

Bud Wiser

August 22nd, 2009
12:19 pm

Oh, and since Obowo and his Idiot Patrol want to take over ‘health care’, how much paying is going to be done by a bankrupt entity (the US govt).

Since it took those morons only a few days to bankrupt “Cash For Clunkers”, once they take on ‘health care’, it should take all of 20 minutes or so to be outta cash then, providing they count all this deficit cash as financing.

Duh.

Yeah, relax idiots, this one is squarely on the thin shoulders of Obowo – if he can stand erect for once, maybe he’ll let the blood flow back to the brain long enough to see he’s losing this one, and throw in the towel before he looks like (even more of) an idiot.

RW-(the original)

August 22nd, 2009
12:28 pm

So is the point supposed to be that if we can make an argument that something is rationed then it follows that the government should take it over and provide it?

Talk about your ultimate slippery slope. What isn’t rationed when you use Jay B’s definition?

DoggoneGA

August 22nd, 2009
12:32 pm

“SORRY. YOU’RE SPEAKING TONGUE-IN CHEEK, RIGHT?”

Nah, Georgie speaks that ever-present language ENGRISH!

DoggoneGA

August 22nd, 2009
12:34 pm

“What isn’t rationed when you use Jay B’s definition?”

Ummm…that’s Jay’s WHOLE point.

Michael H. Smith

August 22nd, 2009
12:39 pm

A couple of problems jconservative that liberals refuse to accept: First, equal rights does not mean equal results, which is what the liberals want in healthcare and just about everything else. Secondly, most of the health care systems so often cited face very difficult times ahead due to financing and aging populations. Thirdly, no real effort to my satisfaction is being pursued to create more General Practitioners, which means healthcare will be rationed in this country no matter what is done until more doctors are available. If you remember I proposed a national healthcare lottery to address that very issue which hopefully would provide FULL MEDICAL SCHOLARSHIPS to qualified students of “financially challenged means”.

Anyhow, we don’t disagree on what we are spending presently should cover the actual costs of healthcare solely for every U.S. Citizen but a government Public Option program will never do that for the very reasons you have cited previously. Now, compound that problem with the fact our country cannot continue to operate on current debt levels as projected, let alone adding what will surely be trillions of more borrowed dollars not just a trillion an a half, and ObumerCare simply is out of the question.

RW-(the original)

August 22nd, 2009
12:45 pm

Ummm…that’s Jay’s WHOLE point.

DoggoneGA,

If that’s Jay B’s WHOLE point then it’s pretty pointless. You sure you want to be speaking for him?

Kamchak

August 22nd, 2009
12:47 pm

Michael Lind at salon offers this quote from Nicolo Machiavelli’s The Prince in his article on this subject and I think it bears repeating here.

And it ought to be remembered that there is nothing more difficult to take in hand, more perilous conduct, or more uncertain in it’s success, than to take the lead in the introduction of a new order of things. Because the innovator has for enemies all those who have done well under the old conditions, and lukewarm defenders in those who may do well under the new. This coolness arises partly from fear of the opponents, who have the laws on their side, and partly from the incredulity of men, who do not readily believe in new things until they have had a long experience of them. Thus it happens that whenever those who are hostile have the opportunity to attack they do it like partisans, whilst the others defend lukewarmly, in such wise that the prince is endangered along with them.

Obviously the U.S. government does not operate under a monarchy so there is no prince to take this advice, but it does underscore the difficulties of those trying to change a decades old system with it’s profiteers using all the resources available to thwart any changes.

DoggoneGA

August 22nd, 2009
12:50 pm

“If that’s Jay B’s WHOLE point then it’s pretty pointless. You sure you want to be speaking for him?”

If he doesn’t like it, he’ll correct it. The issue is that, in a discussion of healthcare reform, it’s disingenuous – at best – to object to ANY plan presented on the basis that it’s going to “ration” healthcare. Because EVERY plan is going to ration it one way or another.

So lets move on and find a more relevent point to discuss, because “rationing” is a no-hoper.

RW-(the original)

August 22nd, 2009
12:56 pm

DoggoneGA,

Sadly I can’t stay for an afternoon of your nitpicking (sorry josef) but exactly who is arguing against government health care on the sole basis of rationing? Furthermore if you advocate the government providing everything that’s “rationed” I believe that’s been tried and failed in a spectacular fashion.

Some Business Model

August 22nd, 2009
12:59 pm

Of course it is rationed today. For example, my insurance has a life time benefit limit. I suspect that all or most do. So, if I came down with something very expensive to treat, I’d be SOL after a reletively short period of time. After that, I could go to the emergency room if I was having a heart attack or needed stitches. But, they aren’t going to give me my chemotherapy.

josef nix

August 22nd, 2009
12:59 pm

Okay, Angry Black Man, where are you? BigDawg as Aetna…wait, make that AETNA. In my (and I suspect your) health care reform plan, we could offer full coverage to 12% of the population, including a considerable portion of the currently uncovered, simply by starting with the company of crocodile tears, eh?

JAY–appears you were in my class of 5th graders yesterday. “How do we effect health care reform?” “Okay, now children, what is our question word?” “Right, and when our question word is ‘how,’ what do we give in our answer?” “Right. A step-by-step process. And that process is based on what? Right, facts, not opinions.”

Taxpayer

August 22nd, 2009
1:01 pm

The point should be that the right wing nutter butters can not be called on to participate in any form of rational discussion. They’re too fixated on the fact that they’re losers, and rightfully so. So, when Congress resumes its work, the bulk of it will be without anything constructive from the Republicans, unless you consider doing nothing but saying no something constructive. I don’t. Let the party of losers huddle around their AM tube radios and soak up the party line as presented by the likes of Rush and Hannity, et al, while the people elected to repair the damage wrought on us by the past administration get the job done. That’s just the way it is.

josef nix

August 22nd, 2009
1:06 pm

Gut Shabbas Rab AmVet…thanks for the kind sentiments, last p.m.

DoggoneGA

August 22nd, 2009
1:19 pm

“but exactly who is arguing against government health care on the sole basis of rationing? ”

No one, but it keeps getting added to the mix and it doesn’t need to be there at all, because it’s not advancing the discussion…since EVERY plan that can be devised is going to ration anyway.

So let’s take “rationing” off the table, and discuss things about healthcare reform that WILL make a difference – either good or bad.

Finn mccool

August 22nd, 2009
1:19 pm

I report, you can’t distinguish between a health care provider and an insurance company?

If you have a heart attack the provider will treat you. But its up to the insurance company to allow you a subscription for lipitor.

You’re argument, as usual, has no connection to the current problems.its all just rush:hannity speak.

Angry Black Man

August 22nd, 2009
1:31 pm

Welcome back Josef. I missed ya buddy!!

Rationing is going on and will continue to go on. Co-ops are looking better and better in my opinion. If you take the health industry and make it non profit and reduce the administration costs, I think you’d have a good amount of money to subsidize insurance for those who can’t afford it. Maybe it would be a start. If people still don’t want to buy insurance or something to that effect, just give them two asprin when they get sick. America’s full of choices.

NRB, I just gotta ask, what do you have against federal employees? As a federal employee, I’d like to think that you appreciate the fact that I work to keep you safe. In most areas, federal employee wages are lower than those in the private sector, so how is cutting their wages going to accomplish anything? If nothing else, you’d only be pissing people off.

josef nix

August 22nd, 2009
1:39 pm

ABM–got your message from Normal…don’t want to cross you!

Real Health Reform Will Pass

August 22nd, 2009
1:46 pm

If you believe health reform won’t pass, you believe VP Palin is in and out of the White House brilliantly shaping policy, but also and so.

You can type it, but that’s a form of self abuse. There may be ashoving match between Waxman and about 60 progressives in the House and Rahm Emanuel who tried to bolster the insurance companies and pharmaceutical companies who are doing nothing but cutting people’s coverage and increasing premiums and drug costs, but without the House Emanuel can’t pass anything. They and the 77% of people who want controls on insurance companies won’t let them pass a joke and put lipstick on it.

The recission Jay described is 12 million people in the last few years, and in one study comissioned by Congress 20,000 people were cut simply because they got significant illnesses, (with $354 million saved by 3 large insurers) and for no other reason including the false ones that they didn’t pay premiums (they all co-paid with their employers or that they were illegal immigrants. Funding illegal immigrants is not found in any of the four bills that have alread passed (3 in the House and 1 in the Senate now passed), and it sure as hell is not in the Senate Finance Six’s plans aka the Baucus Caucus which aren’t going anywhere in Conference or in Reconciliaition if we have to anyway.

The House is not effing around; they are not bluffing. This is a once in a lifetime chance to change much of what Jay Bookman calls rationing.

18,000 people died in 2008 after becoming seriously ill and having insurance cut
12 million people have been cancelled after getting catastrophic illnesses
430 people will be cut Monday and every workday next week in Georgia
Premiums have increased by 300% in the last several years
Average premium $12,500 employer $4,500 co-pay for employees; in Georgia that total will soon be $21,500
Michigan Blue Cross Blue Shield raised premiums 22% last week
Many people have yearly limits or event limits that keep them from getting care they need
The vast majority of people have deductibles way beyond the level they can afford to pay
Catastropic Illness is the #2 cause of bankruptcy in the U.S.–that’s egregiously insane.

People 65 and over –here’s real rationing– that are on Medicare ( a single payer socialist government health plan by the US government) have a $3600 donut to pay before Medicare pays for their medications. Most of them can’t afford that so they do without and get sick or die.

Medicare will be in the red in 8 years, chiefly because it can’t competitively bid for pharmaceutical purchases and Emanuel tried to make a deal that it wouldn’t.

Medicare also has to clean up about 10% fraud including hardware inflated billing like those ride around chairs that flood TV adds as well as a lot of medical hardware used for patient care Medicare purchases

One problem for Emanuel is he does not have a vote in Congress and he didn’t consult inthe House and if you go inside insurance companies this morning, you’ll find that they are telling Rahm Waxman has told them that deal is not going to happen. Nancy-Ann Min Deparle, the White House Health Reform Director, has been told by Waxman that she’s no longer in control of making any deals after discovering she has gotten a great deal of money from the insurance companies. She has been feeding stories to her husband Jason at the New York Times, and that’s backfired on her.

Emanuel badly miscalculated, and Obama knows that now–you’ll see his tone change in September. Emanuel thought he could screw Waxman and the House, and he’s finding out this weekend they’re having none of it.

It will be very entertaining to see insurance companies asking for even more subsidies in this health care plan at the same time they are fighting to withold documents Waxman has subpoenaed. Even Bayh doesn’t want Waxman to get those documents, becuase through his wife, the Bayh family takes in about $400,000 since Susan Bayh sits on several insurance Boards and her lucrative income comes from them.

Bosch

August 22nd, 2009
1:47 pm

Everybody knows that in the current system we have, rationing happens. The problem is that the wingnuts don’t care as long as it doesn’t happen to them. If one penny of their tax money goes to help someone they judge as not worthy, then that is just simply not acceptable.

Kamchak

August 22nd, 2009
1:51 pm

josef

From last night—Temujin (Genghis Khan) brought the Silk Road under control allowing the flow of goods and ideas from east to west, he was tolerant of religions, realized that his people were nomads and unsuited for administrating cities so he appointed governors from the local population, and reportedly was open to recognizing the legal equality of women. I don’t know his stance on DADT though. :wink:

DoggoneGA

August 22nd, 2009
1:56 pm

“Everybody knows that in the current system we have, rationing happens. The problem is that the wingnuts don’t care as long as it doesn’t happen to them.”

And they don’t care whether it’s a valid argument against the current proposals or not. They want as many “talking points” as possible, even if they are close to…or are actually…lies.

Joey

August 22nd, 2009
1:58 pm

Fighting with a private sector insurance company about coverage is not and never will be the same as fighting with the Federal Government about coverage.

I chose to have my battles with the private sector insurance company, where I know I have a good chance of winning.

DoggoneGA

August 22nd, 2009
1:58 pm

“he was tolerant of religions”

To me, one of the saddest things about the “state of the world” today is that the Muslim religions USED TO BE one of the most tolerant on earth. When “Christians” were persecuting Jews all over Europe, the Muslim world, including Muslim Spain, were places of refuge for them.

Oh yes, and the Muslims were also THE best educated and most innovative designers and inventors too.

Which is one reason I am very *intolerent* of most forms of fundamentalism.

DoggoneGA

August 22nd, 2009
2:02 pm

“I chose to have my battles with the private sector insurance company, where I know I have a good chance of winning”

Just don’t bet your life savings on winning (which you might be doing anyway, but I won’t mention that)

josef nix

August 22nd, 2009
2:02 pm

Kamchak–thanks. I did not know his real name. I’m embarrassed especially since this fellow is one of the more fascinating in world history and, yes, I was aware of much the rest of what you said. Back when I was a kid we had an immigrant family from Bukhara in the congregation. DADT? Probably not at issue since the Mongols did not originally proscribe homosexuality. They picked that up as part of their “civilizing” on adoption of Islam! :-)

Dusty

August 22nd, 2009
2:05 pm

Oh, I am in such a rush. Love our family birthday parties even if they drive me nuts. And; this one is double! So much for that.

AmVet @1:38 last night. Thank you for sending us your picture. (Holy moly! It is errrrr rr fantastic! Just don’t show it to children.)

stands for decibels@ 6:am today.. Glad you liked the part about my Dad written last night. I sure lucked out with my parents.. Thanks for the compliments. I puffed up like a pigeon.

josef, I can see you pushed tectonic plates to get those kiddies through the writing class.. Getting tham all aquiver and ready. May the earth quake with joy at exam time. (You may tipple totally in celebration!)

Awwww, Bookman is off on the wrong track again. Healthcare rationed? Not yet.. Only if Obama can sneak this one in somehow., somewhere, Maybe Sheehan will hold him hostage until he gets over this spell. I think vacations should be rationed. At the White House. Yes, that one in Washington, D.C. Will someone please dust off that place so we can use it again?

Well, see ya later and I will save all of you a piece of cake. The icing is orange with some white stuff decorations. Both cakes are “Agent Orange”:. Ohhh, why did I say that! Wrong. They are Outre Orange (and on sale). If I am not here later or tomorrow you will know I ate too much “outre”..

Now, be sweet and behave, mon amis.

josef nix

August 22nd, 2009
2:12 pm

Doggone–well, to a certain point, there were periods of anti-Jewish persecutions in Moorish Spain as well. Once the Almoravides and Almohads came in dhimmi populations were subjected to persecutions a violent and hateful as anything the Inquisition ever came up with. And, sadly, you are right about the eclipse of the Islamic Golden Age, though I would disagree on the use of the term “fundamentalist.” It was when they moved to fanaticism and away from the fundamentals of the faith that the sickness took hold and the same may be said for any of the other religious faiths, Hair splitting, perhaps, but, then I am descended from a long line of Sephardic Maimonidean rabbis! :-)

josef nix

August 22nd, 2009
2:17 pm

DUSTY–hey back at ya! Well, I DID celebrate last year when our little buggers came through with flying colors. Probably will lay off the sauce today. Too much last p.m.!

DOGGONE–on rereading your post I note your use of “most” in modification of “fundamentalist.” I stand corrected.

josef nix

August 22nd, 2009
2:19 pm

RW–just caught the “nitpicking!” :-) And, yes, it’s already started!

Taxpayer

August 22nd, 2009
2:20 pm

I chose to have my battles with the private sector insurance company, where I know I have a good chance of winning.

Give us some examples of the battles that you think you can win against an insurance company.

booger

August 22nd, 2009
2:30 pm

Taxpayer,

Give an example of battles……

In my life, which is a longer time than I would like, I have had three appeals. I won all three and the process took less than three weeks. By the way, all insurance companies have an appeal process.

Brad Steel

August 22nd, 2009
2:51 pm

There is no health care reform, at all, for republicans, right? Any change in the status quo must be stopped.

George American

August 22nd, 2009
3:06 pm

“OBOZO, OBOWO, ETC…” AND HIS ELITISTS IDIOTS ARE “HELL BENT” ON FORCING THIS COUNTRY INTO “MARXISM” AND BANKRUPTING US MONEYWISE AND MORALLY.

WE NEED ANOTHER CONSERVATIVE CHRISTIAN CAPITALIST IN THE “WHITE” HOUSE!!!

Taxpayer

August 22nd, 2009
3:06 pm

I don’t recall asking for a count. After all, I too have had numerous “appeals” on different issues. I won and lost on them, most of them covering such matters as “reasonable and customary” or simply a wrong code entered on the bill. The big one came when my wife changed to an individual policy versus group coverage and the “insurance” company conveniently found, after the fact (i.e., after we were already stuck with the bill since the so-called approved procedure had been completed), an error in her application. They conviently cancelled the insurance and re-imbursed all prior monthly premiums. Bottom line, our lawyer said “consider yourself lucky”.

DoggoneGA

August 22nd, 2009
3:07 pm

“though I would disagree on the use of the term “fundamentalist.” It was when they moved to fanaticism”

Yes, of course…but I was using “fundamentalism” in today’s sense…which these days is almost identical with fanaticism.

DoggoneGA

August 22nd, 2009
3:08 pm

“all insurance companies have an appeal process”

As will a “public option”…why would you think it would be any different? If a public option is to compete with commercial insurance, it’s going to have to be BETTER than them, not worse.

Taxpayer

August 22nd, 2009
3:13 pm

which is a longer time than I would like

By the way, have you been before the death panel yet to be informed of your options. :smile:

josef nix

August 22nd, 2009
3:14 pm

Taxpayer: “Bottom line, our lawyer said ‘consider yourself lucky.”

It speaks a great deal as to the problem with health care when the lawyers have to be brought into it.

booger

August 22nd, 2009
3:19 pm

Doggone,

Just saying I’m three for three with insurance companies so I like the odds. My father is in a nursing home and on Medicare. I look after his affairs. Last year he broke his hip and was transported from the nursing home to an emergency room 8 miles away. There was an emergency room 6 miles away but it was small and didn,t have an orthopedic surgeon on call. Medicare turned down his claim because he did not go to the nearest emergency room. He also has a secondary policy with United health. Since medicare did not pay they payed his entire bill.

This is my experience.

Taxpayer

August 22nd, 2009
3:26 pm

It speaks a great deal as to the problem with health care when the lawyers have to be brought into it

And, it does not speak well.

booger

August 22nd, 2009
3:31 pm

Doggone,

I just read my 3:19 blog and it is misleading. Medicare did pay for my fathers treatment, but not for the EMTs and ambulance ride. United paid this entirely.

Taxpayer

August 22nd, 2009
3:36 pm

booger,

who pays for the nursing home and other bills. Also, many people purchase supplemental insurance in addition to Medicare for cases such as you described. Medicare covers a lot of people and they have to find reasonable ways to keep the cost down. Call it rationing if you want.

Question

August 22nd, 2009
3:39 pm

Step One: Can we all agree we are getting tired of continuing to reward failure (including illegals) at the expense of success, i.e., I’m tired of supporting more and more of the entitlement-seeking, generational government-dependent leeches!!!

booger

August 22nd, 2009
3:41 pm

My father pays his own nursing home bills and all other bills. I actually pay it but from his accounts. As I said, he does have a secondary supplemental policy with United Health, and they paid the entire bill.

josef nix

August 22nd, 2009
3:49 pm

My own example from the Kafkaesque world of health care. Several years ago I had a kidney stone. I had no idea when it set in what it was and the pain was about the worst I’ve ever experienced. I went to the nearest emergency room, about two miles away. I was quickly diagnosed and drugged. For the emergency personnel, it was just one more “first time around” kidney stone patient and they could have dealt with it in their sleep, They took the time to explain to me that I was just fine and nothing to worry about. I was nowhere near death’s door! Then, rather than just give me the pain pills and send me home, they sent me to overnight observation–at a hospital some 10 miles away where my plan was accepted. The cost of the ambulance ride there and the overnight stay as well as the initial emergency room fees ran up quite the bill for which I was charged $25. No complaints there from my pocketbook spot one, but somebody somewhere had to up the change for all of those unneeded and unnecessary “services.” That somebody, in my case, was my fellow taxpayers since I am employed and covered by the public sector. That ambulance ride, while certainly entertaining since I was high as a kite and feeling no pain, was one huge waste of money and totally unnecessary in a streamlined system.

Real Health Reform Will Pass

August 22nd, 2009
3:49 pm

The insurance companies have taken the list of people on the five committees draftinggs bills and picked the Blue Dogs and Republicans they can bribe to protect them from a public option and they have paid them $1.4 million per day to bribe them to do it.

Five Committees, Three Votes Public Campaign Action Fund

http://www.campaignmoney.org/threevotes

http://www.campaignmoney.org/pressroom/2009/07/27/elected-officials-voting-against-health-reform-received-65-more-in-industry-campaign-donations-than-those-v

Everyone understands wingnuts don’t want to care for people who have no insurance, but what’s amazing is that they want to help insurance companies screw them by raising their dedcutibles and premiums 300% in the last few years. The price of their meds and their co-pays has risen significantly in the past few years.

Why people want to raise the price of something expensive they are compelled to buy is beyond me.

josef nix

August 22nd, 2009
3:57 pm

Question–in a nationalized, universal health care system the point of “illegals” would not be at issue.

DoggoneGA

August 22nd, 2009
3:57 pm

“Step One: Can we all agree we are getting tired of continuing to reward failure (including illegals) at the expense of success”

I for one, can’t agree. It’s the “unsuccessful” that NEED help more than the successful. I don’t consider that “rewarding” failure. So nope, no agreement from this keyboard location.

“I’m tired of supporting”

But yes, I think we can ALL agree that YOU are tired of it.

Redneck Convert (R--and proud of it)

August 22nd, 2009
3:59 pm

Well, I’m with Sister Dusty and Dave R and the other godly Conservatives. I got my health insurance and if other people don’t have theirs it’s their fault and they can just show up at a emergency room and say what they think is wrong with them and maybe they’ll get treated and the Great Fairy in the Sky will pay for it all.

Anyhow, it’s such a blessing for me to have good health and be able to go out to Countryland Golf Club on a day like this and shoot a 98 and come home and have a PBR or six or seven and relax. Only, people like Bookman keep bringing up health care and trying to make me feel guilty just because 40 or 50 million don’t have none and need to go to the emergency room and get treated and get it paid for by the Great Fairy in the Sky.

So I got about 18 more beers to drink to finish this case and I ain’t going to think about health care or let the fussing on this blog get in the way of my enjoyment. Have a good Saturday night everybody and don’t forget to go to church in the a.m. tomorrow and pray this Obama won’t give these bums that don’t have health care some of our tax money.

AmVet

August 22nd, 2009
4:00 pm

“Can we all agree we are getting tired of continuing to reward failure…?”

Absolutely!

As has been born out by that scintillating 6% winning percentage by the conned over the past two national elections.

Karma, baby. Its a beautiful thing…

N-GA

August 22nd, 2009
4:02 pm

Wild Bill….I understand that you think it is okay to kill unarmed women and children. I suspect that you don’t really believe in God and the judgement.

I Report/ Vast White Wing Conspirator (-: You Whine )-:

August 22nd, 2009
4:16 pm

Reporting from Washington – Democratic strategists say the Obama administration’s evolving, abstract arguments for healthcare reform are backfiring and contributing to a decline in public support for the legislation.-LATimes

Heh, I didn’t know “abstract” meant bald faced lie.

–adjective 1. thought of apart from concrete realities, specific objects, or actual instances: an abstract idea.

Well, yeah, I guess it does.

suibne

August 22nd, 2009
4:24 pm

Dear Jay:
You loopey liberal bumblef.k…….leave my insurance alone. There is no argument in the world would change a socialist’s belief that they are victims and the everyone else should pay. But then again, I thought Michael Jackson should have been buried weeks ago. What do I know?

Question

August 22nd, 2009
4:34 pm

DoggoneGA — I for one, can’t agree. It’s the “unsuccessful” that NEED help more than the successful. I don’t consider that “rewarding” failure. So nope, no agreement from this keyboard location.

Needing help for the short term is one thing (which I wholeheartedly support); generational gov’t dependency, including, for example, those women with 4-5 plus children, each likely by a different man is another. As an experience take a walk thru the Kroger on Memorial Dr. — see how many single moms with multiple kids in tow pay for name brand items with food stamps, yet have an IPod, nails and hair are in the typical Decatur style, and in general drive a vehicle which is usually nicer than the average working joe — it’s the abuse and sense of entitlement that irks me…

Pogo

August 22nd, 2009
4:45 pm

The question is not whether health care is presently rationed Jay. The big question is, will it be rationed even more with the Federal and State Governments in control (knowing their history of not being to manage any of their own business or to keep to a budget (i.e Medicare and Medicaid))? Especially if some kind of healthcare is mandated by the government. Rationing will get worse as the budgets begin to look worse and these morons in the Whitehouse and Congress political careers start looking worse. They will never go back on idealogy (just as you and the lib shut-ins here won’t Jay) but they will cut back on services. Not the cost of existing services, just the services themselves. It is apparent to everyone but a few of the blinded liberal loyal such as yourself. A few things that should be considered are; implement Tort Reform immediately. Make private insurance a commodity that can be obtained in any state from anybody offering it in any other state. Set up clinics (privately owned) that will treat the Emergency Room addicts that are today abusing the system and mandate a set of criteria that people must adhere to to be admitted to an Emergency Room (so people cannot abuse the Emergency Rooms as they are doing now). Also they need to work on the drug companies. There is no excuse for the prices they charge Americans as considering what they charge patinets in most every other country in the world. I could tell you story about Emergency Room abuse, payed for by the State, that I recently witnessed first hand but I am afraid that it would make a lot of people sick.

A big problem is that the American people see this for what it is. It is not about Healthcare. It is about pushing a progressive agenda and they smell a rat. The president himself now admits that he doesn’t care if he is a one term president. That is why all of this (Cap and Trade, Healthcare, etc.)Obama and Pelosi are proposing will be implemented after 2012. If it happens and it goes into the crapper, he will be long gone. If you can say one thing about Obama, he sticks to his progressive and socialist leanings that he has spent a lifetime in developing

Amvet, your worst nightmare is about to occur on the national political stage. You got about 14 more months (2010 elections) of goading and then you can really be bitter. Of course it may not be possible to be more bitter than you already are. What a life.

Real Health Reform Will Pass

August 22nd, 2009
4:46 pm

Question–in a nationalized, universal health care system the point of “illegals” would not be at issue

I’m not sure if you mean would illegals gain more access in nationalized care in the US if it happened? If so the answer is no. In the 4 health bills passed, including the one that will come out of the Baucus Caucus in Senate Finance, there is no provision to care for illegals.

US law mandates they get care when presenting to the ER as all patients do. COBRA is designed to prevent dumping, but dumping from private facillity to charity facility takes place in every major city and sometimes with disastrous results if the patient is much sicker than they thought initially.

Recently, the Chicago Tribune ran stories that U Chicago Medical Center was dumping. The former VP for Community affairs there was one Michelle Obama.

http://archives.chicagotribune.com/2009/feb/19/business/chi-biz-university-of-chicago-emergency-room-feb19

DebbieDoRight

August 22nd, 2009
4:50 pm

Oh yeah let’s cut the military budget, isn’t that the ONE thing that the Feds are to do? Protect us. Let’s not have a military at all and then we won’t need healthcare because we will no longer be around. Let’s have another entitlement program

Speaking of entitlement programs………..:

As vets await checks, VA workers get $24M bonuses

By KIMBERLY HEFLING, Associated Press Writer – Fri Aug 21, 12:07 pm ET

WASHINGTON – Outside the Veterans Affairs Department, severely wounded veterans have faced financial hardship waiting for their first disability payment. Inside, money has been flowing in the form of $24 million in bonuses.

In scathing reports this week, the VA’s inspector general said thousands of technology office employees at the VA received the bonuses over a two-year period, some under questionable circumstances. It also detailed abuses ranging from nepotism to an inappropriate relationship between two VA employees.

The inspector general accused one recently retired VA official of acting “as if she was given a blank checkbook” as awards and bonuses were distributed to employees of the Office of Information and Technology in 2007 and 2008. In some cases the justification for the bonuses was inadequate or questionable, the IG said.

The official, Jennifer S. Duncan, also engaged in nepotism and got $60,000 in bonuses herself, the IG said. In addition, managers improperly authorized college tuition payments for VA employees, some of whom were Duncan’s family members and friends. That cost taxpayers nearly $140,000.

Oh if only all that Defense Budget Money would actually go to the Veterans/Servicemembers for things like healthcare, rehab for disabled vets, pay for themselves and their families, and kevlar vests instead of so much useless waste; perhaps we’d find some money for other things……

DebbieDoRight

August 22nd, 2009
4:53 pm

Jackie

August 22nd, 2009
4:59 pm

Health care is rationed today. For those that require organ replacement or specialized services, those folks go on a list and have to wait for a slot for the procedure to take place, or, they are denied by the insurance carrier.

Secondly, it is estimated that at the current rate, health care will consume 40% of our GDP by the year 2040. That leaves 60% for military, Social Security, schools, roads, bridges, consumer protection functions, communications, etc., etc., etc.

Decisions, decisions, decisions.

I Report/ Vast White Wing Conspirator (-: You Whine )-:

August 22nd, 2009
5:01 pm

But the three Democrats believe savings can be found without going to the heart of the bill. “There are not going to be significant changes to coverage,” said one Democratic aide familiar with the talks. “We’re finding other ways to bring down the cost.”-WSJ

What the hell would a democrat know about saving money, hahahaha, yeah, right.

Gtf outta here.

grc

August 22nd, 2009
5:08 pm

Yes we agree … health care is rationed. ECN101 … day 1 … definition of economics: the study of the allocation of scarce resources. In a 100% capitalist market the rationing would be via money. Most people understand that even if some senators (Jon Kyle comes to mind) are a bit to slow.

In today’s market the insurers get into the rationing process. Sara P calls this rationing process: “death panels”. Nice politically spin. While Obama is trying to put out that fire Sara threw the log of legal tort reform on the fire.

There is some common ground. Everyone agrees it is unacceptable for people to lose coverage because they get sick or lose a job (pre-existing conditions) and everyone agrees that action to cut costs (if only to automate the administration of this backwards industry) is desirable. I think everyone also agrees that it is smarter to pay for preventative care rather than emergency care and therefore providing some level of insurance for some of the uninsured makes economic sense. Why not focus on the common ground? The extremes of both parties are disgusting.

Bob

August 22nd, 2009
5:08 pm

Making insurance companies cover pre existing conditions is like asking Las Vegas to let people place bets after they see the cards. Alot of people find out they are sick then try to by insurance. I have never been denied anything from my insurance company.

I Report/ Vast White Wing Conspirator (-: You Whine )-:

August 22nd, 2009
5:11 pm

Whatever possessed President Obama to mention the travails of the post office while discussing health care the other day, his timing was certainly apt. The Postal Service is headed toward a loss of $7 billion this year and another $7 billion in 2010. Naturally, Congress is planning another bailout rather than the kind of reform that would recognize how technology has transformed modern communications.-WSJ

Ah, what’s another 14 Billion out the window?

Real Health Reform Will Pass

August 22nd, 2009
5:12 pm

Pogo just regurgitated the standard Baucus Caucus line that has no basis in reality in clinical medical treatment. What Pogo’s non documented standard witngnut statement would do is to preserve the status quo. Pogo fantasizes about “lib shut ins” but he must be displacing his own state of affairs in a delusional idea about other people here and no one knows what the hell he means by that dispariging and delusional comment.

Whatever story Pogo has about ER abuse of patients we can handle. ER treatment in this country is far from perfect, but it is rigorously controlled, and in most places consistently high quality. Thtrere are a lot of systems in place to promote and conrol high standards. ERs are being overwhelmed with elective care patients who have chronic illnesses, because our system is badly broken and that’s one area HC reform is designed to fix.

http://www.acep.org/practres.aspx?id=29144

There are plenty of MD who support a public option, and I’m one. We have clinical experience every day in a varitety of settings including the ER for years, and outpatient primary care.

The House Bills and Senate bills proposed now all defeat rationing. If Pogo can site one passage in any of the four bills passed in the House and Senate thus far that supports rationing, it is surprising that he/she declines to do so. I wonder if Pogo could be Betsy McGaughey that Jon Stewart made a fool of on Thursday.

The bill that will be produced and passed, or the two bills that will be produced and passed are all about health care. They are about giving older people access to medicines they can’t afford because of the Medicare Donut that requires out of pocket expenses for $3600 worth of medicine before Medicare pays them. They may well include allowing medicare to bid on pharmaceutical purchases, just as Emory and Piedmont do now through large heavily leveraged consortiums.

State line insurance sales have been shown to do nothing to control exponentially rising insurance costs, the dropping of patients (430 per day in Georgia, 12 million in the US).

As MDs we are well aware of malpractice premiums and problems and the need for caps, but it would do nothing to prevent insurance companies from continuing to gouge patients, ration their access, yank their policies when they get signficantly sick.

Pogo has presented a Katy Abram Sarah Palin argument against improving health care. Fortunately that argument is dead on arrival and will have no impact on what we get passed.

“The American people” Pogo claims to represent are the people in this country who are Katy Abram learning challenged. The most recent large survey had 77% of people for a public option completed last week,

A new study by SurveyUSA puts support for a public option at a robust 77 percent, one percentage point higher than where it stood in June:

http://www.surveyusa.com/client/PollReport.aspx?g=5ba17aa2-f1b9-4445-a6b8-62b9d1ba8693

I haven’t seen any of Amvet’s posts in months that depict him as “bitter.” My assessment is that he’s anything but “bitter,” and at the opposite end of that spectrum, and his posts are very well informed whether you agree with them or not.

DebbieDoRight

August 22nd, 2009
5:14 pm

Question: Needing help for the short term is one thing (which I wholeheartedly support); generational gov’t dependency, including, for example, those women with 4-5 plus children, each likely by a different man is another.

This is one of the things that I really hate to see. People repeating the same tired mantras over and over and over and over again. Please tell me, how can you TELL that a woman has 4 or 5 kids from a different man? Do they look differently one from another? Does everyone in YOUR family look exactly alike? Kinda effs up your theory huh?

As an experience take a walk thru the Kroger on Memorial Dr. — see how many single moms with multiple kids in tow pay for name brand items with food stamps

I’m really interested in knowing what those “food stamps” look like? And another quick question, with so many people laid off, collecting unemployment AND food stamps, can you arbitrarily tell which ones are “using the system welfare queens” and which ones are just down on their luck right now? Do you have the power of second sight and can read minds and stuff? If so, can you tell me the winning lotto numbers? I hear the jackpot is up to $252 million now!!

— it’s the abuse and sense of entitlement that irks me…

What irks me are blanket statements like the ones you just made. I bet, before the unemployment hit Georgia hard in 2008, the most “entitlement” seeking people lived in North Georgia NOT Dekalb county.

AmVet

August 22nd, 2009
5:14 pm

Pogo, lemme guess. You’re one of the dolts who predicted a McCain win!

And to be clear, I don’t think you are going to lose 94% of the races in next two elections.

With lots of hard work, ill-gotten money and paralyzing the “faithful”with fear you might actually win 16%!

Me, bitter?

I’m ecstatic!

You are the angry clods who are clueless…

Tom

August 22nd, 2009
5:23 pm

It’s highly rationed. But the new healthcare bill shocks me so much that I dropped the Bible I was holding while I masturbated on my AR-15!!

DebbieDoRight

August 22nd, 2009
5:23 pm

I chose to have my battles with the private sector insurance company, where I know I have a good chance of winning.

From Taxpayer: Give us some examples of the battles that you think you can win against an insurance company.

I would like to see some examples AND some directions with step by step instructions!! A WIN against a big bad insurance CONGLOMERATE?!? If he/she wins, they should write a how-to book put it on the market and make zillions!!!