What’s really scary? Acting like nothing’s wrong with Medicare

If Medicare reform is on life support, it’s not because of a special election in upstate New York or the Senate’s rejection of the House GOP budget plan.

It’s because one side wants to air TV commercials of a dark-suited Republican pushing grandma off a cliff, while pursuing a path of neglect that would let her die bed-ridden and alone.

There can be no “hands off Medicare” policy. Either your hands are busy trying to fix the indisputably broken program, or your hands are holding it down, helping it collapse under its own unbearable weight.

Left-wing pundits gloated over the news Tuesday from New York’s 26th Congressional District, a longtime Republican stronghold won by a Democratic candidate on the single issue of “GOP’s killing grandma!” Time’s Joe Klein, appearing on MSNBC, called it “a victory for socialism.”

But Margaret Thatcher’s dictum that, with socialism, “eventually you run out of other people’s money” remains true. And with Medicare, “eventually” has arrived.

The main tax dedicated to Medicare, the hospital insurance portion of federal payroll levies, no longer covers even half of retirees’ health expenses. In this fiscal year and the next five combined, Medicare will cost more than the sum raised by the tax in its first 45 years of existence. The shortfall between 2011 and 2016 is nearly $2 trillion.

And if you haven’t heard, most other tax revenues are more than spoken for.

Medicare is so central to the nation’s budgetary problems, and yet so frightening to touch, that the past workweek for members of the world’s greatest deliberative body regarding the country’s most important business went like this: Vote nay to the House Republican budget plan; vote super-nay (97-0) to the president’s budget plan; hear the majority party’s leader say “it would be foolish” for his caucus even to propose its own budget; declare it quittin’ time and head home.

The political temptation to interpret the past week’s results as an excuse to punt again, while great, would be harmful. So harmful, in fact, that former President Bill Clinton was overheard telling Paul Ryan, the Wisconsin congressman who authored the GOP’s budget plan and Medicare-overhaul proposal, to keep pursuing reform (if not that particular proposal).

Other Democrats ought to pay attention. There is a reason virtually no public program for senior citizens is aging well, from Medicare and Social Security to the majority of pensions for state workers and, in metro Atlanta, many county and city retirement plans. They were designed for a different era, then robbed or neglected as the world changed around them.

All of which means salvaging them is transforming them.

There are many differences between this debate and the Obamacare debates, during which Democrats (wrongfully) labeled the GOP the “party of no” and which now may lead those same Democrats to declare turnabout is fair play.

First, reforming Medicare is fixing an existing entitlement, not adding a new one.

Second, Democrats’ carping about the GOP was purely cynical: Their hurdle to passing Obamacare was getting other Democrats on board, not the vastly outnumbered Republicans. Now, in divided government, the two parties have to work together or let things fester until 2013 or later.

But most important, there’s only so much life left in Medicare for politicians to squeeze out for their own benefit.

– By Kyle Wingfield

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138 comments Add your comment

Michael H. Smith

May 27th, 2011
6:12 pm

Kyle, I hope you linked to comments made by Bill Clinton concerning this topic?

Michael H. Smith

May 27th, 2011
6:21 pm

Another clip of Bill Clinton commenting on Medicare.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-ZpKOA7vgHI

Defrocking Department

May 27th, 2011
6:29 pm

Will the real Bishop Eddie Long stand up and come out of the closet?

Michael H. Smith

May 27th, 2011
6:32 pm

MarkV

May 27th, 2011
6:56 pm

Kyle, you blame Democrats for not submitting a solution to the Medicare cost problem, but you ignore that the same is true for the Republicans. The only substantial proposal the Republicans have come up with is the Ryan plan, which is not a solution to Medicare costs, it is an abandonment of the Medicare idea.

Your Mom

May 27th, 2011
7:02 pm

Just as long as we keep cutting taxes on the top 2%.

oldguy

May 27th, 2011
7:24 pm

Interesting the Healthcare Plan is part of the solution you know the one Republicans lied about and
made it difficult to get a better plan passed. Does medicare need some attention you bet but doing away with it for those under 55 ics not the answer.

Michael H. Smith

May 27th, 2011
7:30 pm

As long as Democrats continue to lie about the Ryan plan they are the ones guilty of abandonment and a refusal to fix what will implode if left alone. As Clinton and Rivlin are both aware.

Fortunately and despite Clinton’s short comings he unlike so many other socialist Democrats, is not brain dead.

MarkV

May 27th, 2011
7:35 pm

Democrats do not lie about Ryan’s plan. Ryan is deceitful when he calls his plan a “reform of Medicare.”

Michael H. Smith

May 27th, 2011
7:40 pm

Democrats lie like wall-to-wall carpet and their claims are deceitful.

bxnyc

May 27th, 2011
7:50 pm

To Michael H Smith, in his desire to appease the right Bill Clinton put his foot in his mouth again, thus allowing narrow minded bigots to use it as fodder to claim democrats will compromise on their terms. NOT GOING TO HAPPEN. You can live down there in your world below the mason dixon line where 1930’s thinking is prevelant. Get a grip, the country has seen the republican smoke & mirrors and they dont like it, you will not only lose the presidental election in 2012 but possibly the house and never mind the media salivating over the senate you will lose. No matter what happens,once the president wins reelection he then can push his agenda (because he cant run again) and he will stymie the idiots who think they are smart.

Michael H. Smith

May 27th, 2011
7:52 pm

They’re throwing granny over the cliff say Democrats.

The Ryan plan says, for those 55 years and older, their Medicare does not change. Granny is kept safe and sound.

ND

May 27th, 2011
8:00 pm

What’s really scary is acting like there’s nothing wrong with exempting the richest Americans from paying taxes on the pretext that this will result in creating jobs, when there’s no attempt being made to ensure that the jobs in question are actually being created because of these tax breaks.

Michael H. Smith

May 27th, 2011
8:00 pm

bxnyc

Bill Clinton remains the smartest Democrat on planet earth. Now you get a grip. No… On second thought, don’t. I want obumer and as many democrat defeats as possible in 2012.

Moderate Line

May 27th, 2011
8:02 pm

First, reforming Medicare is fixing an existing entitlement, not adding a new one.

Second, Democrats’ carping about the GOP was purely cynical: Their hurdle to passing Obamacare was getting other Democrats on board, not the vastly outnumbered Republicans. Now, in divided government, the two parties have to work together or let things fester until 2013 or later.
++++
Fixing Medicare is the No. 1 issue. Bill Clinton brings up a good point. The Dem so far have offer no solution.

The government will probably be divided in 2013. Either party protecting the satus quo is going to ruin the country.

bxnyc

May 27th, 2011
8:03 pm

So Michael, which republican senator from the midwest accused the democrats of TRYING TO PULL THE PLUG ON GRANDMA? I’ll let you guess.(hint Grassley) As far as the often repeated talking point about 55 & older being safe, ryan conveniently forgets to say what happens to you once you pass the arbitrary age.I find it amazing that you selfish me first me next and me last thinkers dont see that this is a interdependentent society, Oh I forgot you dont like to share anything, least of all money.

Get Real

May 27th, 2011
8:06 pm

MarkV If you want to use the word “lie” in a sentence, it has to immediately be followed by the word “democrat”

Get Real

May 27th, 2011
8:08 pm

bxny…there are no words…other than have another tall glass of kool-aid

Michael H. Smith

May 27th, 2011
8:12 pm

First, reforming Medicare is fixing an existing entitlement, not adding a new one.

It is more like fixing an existing entitlement for those of 55 years and older and TRANSFORMING it to solvency for future generations of Americans under the age of 55. No one is going to kill Medicare or throw granny over a cliff.

Put Bill Clinton, Alice Rivlin, Paul Ryan and Senator Tom Coburn in a room together for a week and I’ll bet you’ll get legislation that transforms Medicare and Medicaid that is acceptable to all of us.

Get Real

May 27th, 2011
8:12 pm

“What’s really scary is acting like there’s nothing wrong with exempting the richest Americans from paying taxes”

I pay plenty…49% of the country pays ZERO in federal income tax, we wagon pullers are getting tired. I want my free ride in the wagon.

oldguy

May 27th, 2011
8:22 pm

ND’
do you live under a rock in Moldovia?? Tax breaks??!!??
The top 10% of wage earners pay 40% of all individual income taxes. They pay way more than any other group.
The bottom 50% of wage earners pays 3% of income taxes.
What do you want 100% ???
VAT Tax——the real answer you spend it you pay tax on it.

oldguy

May 27th, 2011
8:24 pm

p.s. I am retired and make less than $44,000.00/year.

SC

May 27th, 2011
8:27 pm

Rand Paul had a plan that would give us a surplus in 5 years.

Michael H. Smith

May 27th, 2011
8:28 pm

Yeah, I hear you John Get Real Gult and I DO FEEL YOUR PAIN but face it, some of us have to be the responsible adults in this childish gim’me gim’me socialist society. Altho, if we can’t turn things around soon the irresponsible others among us may even run out of our money and that of China too.

Where have you gone Iron Maggie… Coo, coo, ca-choo

oldguy

May 27th, 2011
8:30 pm

If my fellow Conservatives have any sense they will drop preposing any changes to Medicare. Let it fail (or rather bankrupt the Feds) Then the retards can worry about what happened. The US Public is too stupid to comprehend what is happening and the Demoncrats will play that to the end.

Michael H. Smith

May 27th, 2011
8:31 pm

Yeah, and soon I’ll feel your same pain too old guy. :)

JDW

May 27th, 2011
9:04 pm

Kyle, what you are ignoring is the fact that one of the main reasons Medicare is having problems today is the Duhbya led Republican backed drug program which they conveniently “forgot” to fund.

Funny how someone else always has to clean up those Republican “oversights”

Kiljoy

May 27th, 2011
9:44 pm

George Bush was never President. The Republicans did not control all three branches of government for six year! Alice still lives in wonderland and Kyle is cleaning up crumbs on the yellow brick road.

yuzeyurbrane

May 27th, 2011
11:02 pm

Kyle, you obviously have not read the Ryan bill. I suggest you do before pontificating over what it does and does not do. First, you are wrong in saying it would not effect those 55 and older. There is a very tiny line in the legislation that caps all entitlement spending if the deficit exceeds a certain % of GDP. Clever. The biggest entitlement programs are Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security. A cap means a reduction. And not only would it impact Medicare but Social Security as well and IT WOULD NOT EXEMPT THOSE 55 AND OLDER FROM CUTS. On top of this, as you probably do know, your Republican buds don’t even want to wait to enact this through the normal legislative process. Instead, is it 1 of their demands in exchange for raising the debt limit before we start defaulting on TBonds on Aug. 2. Blackmail is not the normal legislative process.

I could go on far beyond what anyone wants to read as to the other incorrect beliefs. For example, what Ryan have proposed is not just like the health insurance he receives as a member of Congress or even the exchange program that is part of the Healthcare Reform Act. It is a voucher pure and simple for an amount which the Budget Office estimates would leave most Seniors paying a majority of their health insurance premiums out of their own pockets. . . if they can find an insurer that will insure them. Medicare has been here almost 50 yrs. and therefore you don’t recall but maybe your Dad or a Grandparent may recall and inform you that the norm, under the private insurance plans that existed prior to that, was that they simply would not insure Seniors because it was not profitable for them. Seniors do get sick more often and it probably is not profitable for private insurance companies to offer any sort of quality insurance to them. Could this be the main reason Medicare is not profitable now? Could be because it is run more efficiently than most private health insurance programs. Does that make us a society want to throw grandma under the bus? The fact is Seniors are healthier both physically and fiscally because of Medicare (there are plenty of studies showing this) and live their final years with more dignity because of it. It is a good program for Seniors, their children, their grandchildren, Kyle’s Dad or a grandparent, and even eventually for Kyle if he is counting on savings from his newsman’s salary. Cuts should be made but not on the backs of the elderly and poor. Sacrifice should be shared (that means the wealthy). I am a Senior and I approve this message.

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yuzeyurbrane

May 27th, 2011
11:14 pm

Also, ditto and more for your comments on Social Security. It will have enough money from taxes and investment interest on its trust fund to pay all benefits for another 10 years; it has enough money from taxes, interest and cashing in the TBonds the Trust Fund has invested in ($2.5 trillion) to pay benefits at 100% until 2036 even making the most conservative of assumptions. According to some Budget Office estimates based on more economically optimistic assumptions, benefits could remain at 100% indefinitely beyond 2036. Even then it doesn’t just “go broke”. It would then pay out at 75% because of continuing tax revenues. Actuaries have determined that the average benefit is actually the equivalent of a virtually risk free $480,000 whole life policy. And to be sure it remains sound for another 75 years, some rather tiny modifications made now would do the trick. We should do this but don’t try to scare Seniors (and for that matter, young folks) with predictions of the sky about to fall. It’s simply dishonest which is not something I expect from you, Kyle. I am a Senior and I approve this message.

Truthbuster

May 28th, 2011
12:07 am

Being scarily partisan is OK…but ‘pants-on-fire’ falsehoods aren’t? Let me educate you re just some of Medicare/Medicaid reforms in Obama’s Patient Protection & Affordable Care Act (PPACA), since you obviously haven’t read it, visited its many program sites & know nothing about it..but like to wrongfully insult Obama/Dems:

1.Creating a competitive insurance market:
–2014 ACA Insurance Exchanges Will Rollout – will improve consumer bargaining power > lowers premium & health expenditures and creates consumer choices & higher quality options

2.Medicare expensive fee-for-service system wastes billions annually –
–Medicare “bundling”of payment for entire treatment needs or episodes of care, which may span multiple providers and settings, rather than for individual visits or procedures will reduce costs AND improve care co-ordination, quality & outcomes.

3. 15-30% of Health Services Rendered Are Unnecessary/Duplicated – $15B Wasted Annually
– New Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute charged with advanced comparative effectiveness research
–As of 2013, the new.ACA Independent Payment Advisory Board, will be charged with developing proposals to reduce per capita growth in Medicare spending & slow overall growth in national health expenditures
–New Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation focuses on service delivery and payment innovation,and is charged with developing cost-effective strategies for improving quality of US health care delivery & outcomes

4. Prevention is Key: 75% of US Health Expenditures Are Spent on Preventable Chronic Diseases, Prevent Disease & Contain Costs
–Medicare Preventive Services – ACA worked with insurers & providers to provide preventive care counseling, services, checkups & annual wellness exams free-of-charge to Medicare beneficiaries
–ACA-created interactive education & healthfinder service, healthfinder.gov, which provides prevention information, resources, tips targeted to individual needs
–The First Lady/HHS working on ambitious “Let’s Move” national program – Mission: Help Solve National Childhood Obesity Issue Within One Generation http://www.LetsMove.org
–$100 million ACA Grants to Create Healthier Communities
–HHS Consumer Education Campaign

5. ACA & Health Insurers – Eliminate Abuses – Reduce/Control Costs, Prevent Punitive Practices
Which Cause Financial Harm/Distress to Participants, Make HC Affordable
–ACA Patient Bill of Rights
–New ACA Regulation – Stops Arbitrary & Excessive Premium Hikes, Limit to -10% & Require Review/Approval: Major & Much Needed Cost-Cutting Initiative
–ACA law requires & regulates insurers to spend at least 80% of premiums on direct medical care and efforts to improve the quality of care (for individs & small groups) & 85% for large groups (usually 50 or more employees)
–ACA Pre-Exisiting Condition Insurance Plan – new plan option to insure consumers who were rejected from their plan on basis of pre-existing condition
–Curbing Insurance Cancellation – ACA law prevents insurer retroactive plan cancelation due to honest errors in applications
–$250 One-Time Tax Free Donut Hole RX Rebate
.
6.Medicare Fraud – Stop Fraud, Save Billions (over $4 billion retrieved in 2010)
–Medicare Fraud Strike Force
–Healthcare Fraud Prevention & enforcement Action Team (HEAT)
–www.StopMedicareFraud.gov
–Senior Medicare Fraud Patrol – senior volunteer program
–Heat Task Force In Your Area Program
–Consumer Ed: Fight Back Brochure, Stop Medicare Fraud Widget
–HEAT Blog

7ACA & Reducing Rx Drug Costs
–ACA program to make Medicare prescription drug coverage (Part D) more affordable for beneficiaries, by gradually closing the Donut coverage gap
–50% brand name Rx discount when Medicare plan participants hit the donut
–Program to increase incidence of electronic Rx prescribing & CPOE systems, which eliminate costs & consequences associated with medical, medication & prescription errors. Cost analysis of CPOE system at Brigham & Women’s hospital found net savings of $16.7 million over 10 years.

8. Improving Care, Safety & Costs of In-Hospital Health Care
–ACA Partnership For Patients: Better Care, Lower Costs – New Private-Public partnership
–Promoting increased hospitals adoption & use of checklists of evidence-based patient care interventions to decreases incidence of infections, eliminates costs of consequential extended hospital stay & treatments
–Limits how much a hospital or facility can charge a patient for hospital-acquired conditions > lowers patient costs & encourages hospital compliance with cost-saving infection & medical error avoidance strategies.
–Enhanced transitional care programs during 30 days after discharge from hospital > can avoid or lower costs associated with preventable re-admissions, a $16-$20 million annual cost for Medicare.
–Medicare Community-Based Transition Programs

dr. faith

May 28th, 2011
1:23 am

jesus is my co-pilot er co-payment….

Pizzaman

May 28th, 2011
1:33 am

Kyle how do you reconcile the Republican claims that ObamaCare cuts 500 million from medicare and the Ryan plan? Isn’t it true that the Ryan plan keeps that 500 million since it’s Republican sponsored subsidies to the insurance companies, Medicare C (also known as Medicare Advantage), and the pharmaceutical companies, Medicare D , the Bush drug plan. And isn’t it also true that even if the Ryan plan passed in it’s entirety it doesn’t even dent the national debt?
Your side needs to come up with the changes they’ve been crowing about since Nov. And oh yea! Where are the jobs. Its been 5 months!

Michael H. Smith

May 28th, 2011
4:36 am

Caps? Please! Look, there is a CAP on all government spending. It’s commonly called the DEBT CEILING. Try keeping things honest for a change.

BTW, it’s been two years and trillions of borrowed dollars spent, inflation already bearing down on us, unemployment remains well above 8%… so yeah, where are those jobs?!

I really do hope you Democrats continue your suicide march to defeat on this one. The American people are not as dumb as you would like to make them. They will get wise to the fact that all the Democrats are interested in fixing is the 2012 election, not the entitlements or American’s Medicare.
This is what Clinton sees (which is my reason for calling him the smartest Democrat on planet earth) that the rest of his belligerent asinine party is blind to; so keep marching lemmings and it will be the Democrats that go over that proverbial cliff in 2012 – not granny!

Michael H. Smith

May 28th, 2011
6:10 am

Medicare politicking won’t fix problem

…Rep. Ryan is right that Medicare needs fixing. The latest annual report of the Medicare trustees concludes the program is carrying $24.6 trillion in unfunded liabilities over the next 75 years. No amount of taxation alone can close a gap that wide. A combination of cost reduction, improved efficiency and increased revenues will be necessary.

President Obama’s tepid response is a proposal to create a 15-member appointed board to regulate the organization of health care services and to set prices for doctors, hospitals and other providers. Proponents of this model say it will lead to a more rational approach and a standard of care that reduces redundancy and price padding, while stressing preventive medicine.

Critics call it rationing of care.

In truth, however, both approaches will ration care. Republicans would control costs, and effectively ration care, by limiting the value of vouchers and therefore the quantity and quality of health insurance coverage that non-wealthy senior citizens can afford. President Obama would ration care through strong central control.

http://www.theday.com/article/20110528/OP01/305289958

DeborahinAthens

May 28th, 2011
6:12 am

Michael H. Smith, you toss out so many inaccurate statements that one has to assume you get your talking points from Sean Hannity and Rush Limbaugh. Obama’s health care plan works the kinks out of a lot of issues that impact Medicare. And all you Republicans can do is try to trash it. Everyone of you was screeching that it removed $500 billion from Medicare, pointing fingers and crying “Shame, shame!” and now you want Ryan’s plan which absolutely deconstructs Medicare. Do you not see the hypocrisy in that???? Ryan, Eric Cantor, Boehner all take a page from Dubya’s playbook by looking soulfully into the camera and intoning in condescending voices (like parents’ speak to an ignorant child) and repeating lies and half-truths over and over expecting that the American public will eventually have to accept said lies as the truth. We are not ignorant. We know the “entitlement” programs will have to be fixed. But to have Ryan tell us with a straight face that a pathetic voucher will be given to seniors that we can use to purchase insurance–saying that it is like the Congressional healthcare plan–is patently absurd! You can give us a voucher of $6000, $11,000. or $15,000 a year (a plan that really doesn’t upset me, by the way) but good luck on getting an insurance company to insure you when you are 65 and have had cancer, or have been diagnosed with Alzheimers. The American idiots that have voted for the Republicans buy into the lies, not realizing, or perhaps not caring, that the most money raised by candidates (look into Paul Broun’s campaign contributions especially) have come from insurance companies that are salivating at the chance to stop paying for our health care. By the way, I’ve worked since age 16 and am now 60, so, I have put hundreds of thousands of dollars into SS as well as Medicare and I would be happy just to get out of the system what I put into it–so vouchers don’t make me upset. But, since my husband has Parkinsons it is highly unlikely that anyone would insure him at any cost, given the out by the Republican plan.

Gerald West

May 28th, 2011
6:36 am

The posturing over Medicare cost containment ignores the fundamental problem: the unnecessary, outrageous cost of American health care.

Let’s revisit the health care issue! This time, let’s muster the courage to defy special interests and the wisdom to disregard myth and deception. We can reduce the cost of Medicare, Medicaid, and private health insurance by a few simple measures.

We can cut billions from prescription drug costs by banning consumer advertising of prescription drugs, and negotiating, rather than paying asking price for patented medical drugs that are not traded competitively. All other developed countries do this, with good results.

We can reduce the excessive costs of medical imaging by running the expensive MRI and CT scanners two shifts a day, seven days a week, instead of 9-5 weekdays only. Not only would we need only half the number of scanners, we would also reduce the work hours lost in getting patients to the clinics.

We can save billions of dollars and hours of aggravation by shifting private medical insurers from the front end of the medical payment system to the back end. A public utility (“option”), similar to Medicare Part B administration, would decide basic health care coverage and set premiums by age group. Insurance companies operating under contract as lowest cost bidders would provide the clerical processes for eligibility verification and claims payment. This would offer a reasonable alternative to private health care insurers, which are unnecessary, burdensome middlemen between patients and medical providers. For example, Medicare Part B administrative costs are about 6-8% of the provider payments, private insurers administrative costs 10-15%.

Michael H. Smith

May 28th, 2011
7:35 am

Remind me DeborahinAthens, wasn’t it you I had to correct on the Democrats defeating the re-importation of drugs?

And, I really haven’t tossed out inaccurate statements but if you want to get beyond playing your usual wortheless politics and actually work towards something sensible, I’ll over look your incorrect ASS-umptions.

Buzz G

May 28th, 2011
7:42 am

Obama has this habit of sticking his head in the sand. But that’s OK, because most of his voters do the same.

dagnabit

May 28th, 2011
7:45 am

Michael K. Smith is why I’ve quit reading these blogs.

Michael H. Smith

May 28th, 2011
7:47 am

By the way, I’ve worked since age 16 and am now 60, so, I have put hundreds of thousands of dollars into SS as well as Medicare and I would be happy just to get out of the system what I put into it–so vouchers don’t make me upset.

Oh and BTW, I second the notion but FAT CHANCE THAT WILL HAPPEN WE ARE DEADLOCKED into the system.

If I could get NON-PROFIT member owned and operated co-ops with with a few perks like re-importation and bulk purchase of drugs and medical devices the way I’d like them… HO, good bye federal government

Michael H. Smith

May 28th, 2011
7:51 am

Yeah, dang that Michael “K” Smith!

BTW, when you stopped reading these blogs, is that like canceling your already canceled subscription to this paper? :lol:

independent thinker

May 28th, 2011
7:54 am

It is people like Kyle that are ubnable to see how the Republicans purposely ruined Medicare under Bush. Please explain to your red neck narrow minded pinhead base and FauxNews/Limbaugh listeners what Bush’s Medicare Advantage program is -basically a Medicare grab by private insurance companies of the Medicare pie with 14-15% profits and vote buying give aways to seniors like gym memberships. What insurance company would ever pay for that???????????????????
The we get the other vote buying scheme of the Repubs- medicare part D -free drugs with no concessions like the VA on bulk purchases from Big Pharma. Instead you get a parade of unneccessary drugs being advertised for seniors on TV. This vote buying scheme got Bush reelected in 2004 and WAS COMPLETELY UNFUNDED. Yeah the Repubs break the piggy bank and then call the other side socialists just like EMTALA passed under St. Ronnie- free emergency room treatment to any breathing person who shows up. Who is paying for that? Isn’t that pure socialism???????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????

Michael H. Smith

May 28th, 2011
7:55 am

add to 7:47 am

And, good bye private sector insurance companies for the most part too!

carlosgvv

May 28th, 2011
8:16 am

Our Military is run by the government so, we have a socialist Military. And, we constantly say our Military is the best in the world. Do those of you who hate Socialism think our Military is bad?

Michael H. Smith

May 28th, 2011
8:22 am

carlosgvv, if you like Socialism so much, you know there are purely socialist and full blown communist countries you can become a citizen of and live in.

Cutty

May 28th, 2011
8:27 am

I would give republicans more respect regarding the Ryan plan if they didn’t use the savings from Medicare to give even more tax breaks to the rich. That has proven time and again not to work, but that’s the only page in their playbook.

Cutty

May 28th, 2011
8:30 am

Oh yeah, and where was this article Kyle when teapublicans were screaming about death panels?? Seems like both parties try and use fear to their advantage. The average American is too intellectually inferior to see it.

MIltonMan

May 28th, 2011
8:48 am

Libtards and their scare tactics. Worrisome part is that is what works with the stupid ones in South Fulton, Atlanta, DeKalb, Clayton, etc.

wampum

May 28th, 2011
8:52 am

Damn right turnabout is fair play. If we paid per capita what “socialist” countries paid for healthcare we’d be swimming in surplus. We have a healthcare cost crisis fueled by a profit driven wall street model of doing business. Only solution is to nationalise healthcare and provide universal coverage. Republicans created this “crisis”. What a shame it’s biting them in the a$$.