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Things Are Going Well – Don’t You Think?

25 Oct

I contended the other day and still contend that I believe Obama has never even read the ACA. How else do you explain his completely misleading statements over the previous two years that if you liked your insurance plan, you could keep it? He even said emphatically – “end of story”. Well now, because of policy mandates, written into the ACA that is proving not to be the case:

Gerry Kominski, director of public health policy at UCLA said: “About half of the 14 million people who buy insurance on their own are not going to be able to keep the policies that they had previously.”

Now had Obama read the bill, and because he is considered by some to be the smartest man in any room, surely he would have known that many existing policies would not have conformed, right?

But like any good apparatchik, Mr. Kominski then goes on to voice the administrations line:

“You’re paying more for a better product and for more protection — and you won’t understand the value of that until you need it,”

A mind boggling fascist statement, wouldn’t you agree? Are individual Americans now incapable of deciding what coverage and protections are best for them? Is this now the State’s responsibility? To decide what is best for our health needs? Keep in mind that maternity coverage is now mandated, meaning that I, who have had a vasectomy, and my wife, who has had a hysterectomy, now have to pay for coverage that we will never use. Thanks to all knowing progressives who have put themselves in a position to determine what is best for me. How lucky I am. Now don’t get me wrong, if the ACA would have increased competition and allowed me to shop from a cafeteria menu of coverages and policies at lower premiums and reasonable deductibles – I would be for that. But that would have been a free market approach. As it is, the ACA is a Statist approach, so choices will fewer and costs will be higher. At least for most of us.

Meanwhile, the tech contractors are blaming the government, and the government is blaming the tech contractors for the mess that is Healthcare.gov.  Which cost you and I hundreds of millions of dollars. All I can say is – well done progressives, well done.

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32 Comments

Posted by on October 25, 2013 in Health Care

 

32 responses to “Things Are Going Well – Don’t You Think?

  1. casper

    October 25, 2013 at 3:40 pm

    You’re right. Let’s ditch the ACA and go straight to single payer.

     
    • Cluster

      October 25, 2013 at 3:46 pm

      Great idea. The ACA has been such a success, let’s allow the government to do even more. Excellent thinking.

       
  2. kmgtwo

    October 26, 2013 at 7:50 am

    First, let’s get this out of the way: Yes, Obama was wrong when he said you could keep your insurance if you like it. I think that’s a good thing. People were able to buy something called insurance where they would have been easily bankrupted if something serious happened.
    You call Kominski an apparatchik, but he’s right. Young people have a feeling of invincibility and don’t believe anything can happen to them. When they have a serious illness and realize that now it won’t destroy them financially, they’ll appreciate the changes.
    Now, for your free market approach. You object to paying for coverage for services you will never use and believe an ala carte approach would lower your costs. I disagree; I think that approach would raise costs across the board. Allowing people to select from a menu of coverage options leads to self-selection of risk pools. The only people who select various benefits are those most likely to use them, which raises the cost of providing that benefit. If everyone contributes to all benefits, the cost is shared among all insurees.
    Let’s see how your approach would work. You object to paying for maternity care, so you would like to exempt yourself for paying for that coverage. In your opinion, that would lower your premiums. At the same time, women don’t have a need to be insured against prostate cancer, so they opt out of that coverage. There goes half of your risk pool right off the top. Now, men under the age of 50 determine the risk of prostate cancer at that early age is not great, so they also don’t select that menu option. What’s left to sustain the prostate cancer coverage risk pool? Men over 50 with a much higher risk of developing prostate cancer. Insurance companies would have no choice but to charge extremely high rates for that coverage, pricing it out of reach for most people, or just not offering it at all. You can apply the same principle to treatments for menopause.
    IMHO, self-selection and lower costs can exist in the same universe. I could be wrong though, if you can show how it would lower costs and still be profitable for insurance companies.

     
    • kmgtwo

      October 26, 2013 at 8:32 am

      Correction: IMHO, self-selection and lower costs <b<can't exist in the same universe.

       
      • kmgtwo

        October 26, 2013 at 8:33 am

        Can’t. It’s just not a day if I don’t fuck up the HTML.

         
  3. rustybrown2012

    October 26, 2013 at 8:25 am

    You want lower costs? Switch to single payer. SP systems provide lower health care costs for the rest of the world, no exceptions. Read that again, no exceptions. Why would anybody want the consistently higher costs of a free market system? Ignorance is one answer. And, oh, yeah, there are huge profits being made from those higher costs. Didn’t someone once say “follow the money”?

     
  4. cluster

    October 26, 2013 at 9:02 am

    It’s just far too simplistic and unrealistic to advocate a single payer system, as it is to advocate a totally private market based system. All single payer systems (Australia, Great Britain, Germany, Sweden, & Canada) are up against rising costs and increased wait times due primarily to an aging population and increase demands. Here’s an example from Australia:

    The drive to reform the system was aimed at improving health outcomes at a time when Australia faces explosive growth in health care costs, an aging population, a higher incidence of chronic diseases and growing demand for services, particularly in remote and indigenous communities where care is often scant. The system now costs roughly A$120 billion per year. Costs have been rising at about a 9% rate for the past five years, while the revenues of state and territorial government have grown by about 6% annually.

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3291686/

    Also keep in mind that these countries all have less than a third of our population, so administrating a single payer system to a population of over 300 million people is just unrealistic in my opinion. So what’s the answer? I have said before that we need to learn from other countries and ours, and devise a blend of private and public options, including but not limited to – financially means test Medicare so only those of lesser financial means get the benefits (Rush Limbaugh does not need Medicare but should pay into it); devise state based risk pools for those with chronic illness’s and pre existing conditions funded by taxes and fees; block grant Medicaid so the states can administer more effectively and increase funding for the program and allocate resources to states with higher needs; allow private insurance companies to compete across state lines and offer a menu of options, coverages and deductibles.

    Sadly, our politicians, driven by pure political partisanship passed a bill on Christmas Eve that we had to pass to find out what was in it, and one of which our President completely misled us on (or outright lied), and KMG, you’re excuse for that is shameful. As a result, more people have currently lost their previous healthcare coverage than have signed up for the new program.

    Instead of coming together like adults, we talk past each other with cartoonish constructs of each others positions. And that characterizes our politicians and our media. Why wasn’t there a complete vetting of the ACA? Why wasn’t there open congressional hearings on the pros and cons of the bill, and a fair, objective, and detailed reporting from the media on the bills strengths and weakness’s? It’s inexcusable, and today we are suffering from the results of that inaction.

     
    • kmgtwo

      October 26, 2013 at 9:20 am

      I didn’t provide an excuse. I just said its a good thing people can’t keep worthless policies.

       
      • cluster

        October 26, 2013 at 10:15 am

        That again is just too simplistic. Many people are very happy with their private insurance including me, and many private insurers do provide excellent coverage for chronic illness’s and pre existing needs.

        But do you think Obama lied? Or didn’t know? It’s one of the two, and either one isn’t good. But far be it from you to criticize anything that moron does, right?

         
      • kmgtwo

        October 26, 2013 at 10:38 am

        I don’t know if he lied and I really don’t care. You, of course, have already made your decision in the matter.

         
      • cluster

        October 26, 2013 at 11:34 am

        I think he didn’t know. I just don’t think the guy is as bright as everyone says he is. But think about what you just said: “I don’t care if he lied”. Amazing.

         
      • kmgtwo

        October 26, 2013 at 12:22 pm

        Well, since I knew that there were minimum standards of coverage and some current plans did not have those minimum standards, it was logical to assume those plans may be cancelled. At the same time, no one forced the insurance companies to cancel those plans. They could have modified the coverage and let their customers decide whether or not to keep it. The government didn’t force anyone to leave their plans, the insurance companies did.

         
    • rustybrown2012

      October 26, 2013 at 2:01 pm

      Single payer is simpler, but not simplistic. Overall, it’s the most effective, commonsense healthcare system in the world. If you don’t think SP can work in this country consider the success of Medicare, one of our most beloved institutions for which has functioned well for many decades and with adjustments will continue to do so. The data which proves SP and other national plans kicks our ass in every way is everywhere:

      “among the 48 countries included in the Bloomberg study, the U.S. ranks 46th, outpacing just Serbia and Brazil. Once that sinks in, try this one on for size: the U.S. ranks worse than China, Algeria, and Iran.
      But the sheer numbers are really what’s humbling about this list: the U.S. ranks second in health care cost per capita ($8,608), only to be outspent by Switzerland ($9,121) — which, for the record, boasts a top-10 health care system in terms of efficiency. Furthermore, the U.S. is tops in terms of health care cost relative to GDP, with 17.2 percent of the country’s wealth spent on medical care for every American.

      In other words, the world’s richest country spends more of its money on health care while getting less than almost every other nation in return.”

      http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/08/29/most-efficient-healthcare_n_3825477.html

      “The United States spends the most per capita on health care across all countries, lacks universal health coverage, and lags behind other high-income countries for life expectancy and many other health outcome measures.”

      http://www.boston.com/lifestyle/health/health_stew/2013/07/best_health_care_in_the_world_you_judge_1.html

      “Despite having the most expensive health care system, the United States ranks last overall compared to six other industrialized countries—Australia, Canada, Germany, the Netherlands, New Zealand, and the United Kingdom—on measures of health system performance in five areas: quality, efficiency, access to care, equity and the ability to lead long, healthy, productive lives, according to a new Commonwealth Fund report. While there is room for improvement in every country, the U.S. stands out for not getting good value for its health care dollars, ranking last despite spending $7,290 per capita on health care in 2007 compared to the $3,837 spent per capita in the Netherlands, which ranked first overall.”

      http://www.commonwealthfund.org/News/News-Releases/2010/Jun/US-Ranks-Last-Among-Seven-Countries.aspx

       
      • Cluster

        October 26, 2013 at 2:33 pm

        No one would be happier than me if we could find a cheaper, more efficient health care system, but SP has it’s challenges as well. And you HAVE to figure in the population differences between the US and those other countries. An SP system administered to a country of 50 million is completely different than administering one to 300 million. Medicare works ok because it is limited to a small group of customers, but even at that, the system is financially unsustainable at the present time.

         
  5. rustybrown2012

    October 26, 2013 at 2:56 pm

    “you HAVE to figure in the population differences between the US and those other countries.”

    Why? You haven’t shown that at all. Greater populations may provide unique challenges but that should in no way preclude a solid program from being implemented. Canada has 7 times the population of Norway yet did not shy away from going single payer in 1966 (Norway had it since 1912). Good thing you weren’t on their parliament.

     
  6. cluster

    October 26, 2013 at 3:57 pm

    Casper, Rusty and KMG remind me of Nancy Pelosi. They all think that we should just go to single payer, then find out what is all about. Well, there are examples out there that you would think they would want to learn from. Yesterday I posted Australia’s challenges, and now here’s Britain’s:

    Mr Prior said its assessment of NHS services suggested that close to half of hospitals are now providing care which was either poor, or “not terribly” good. Mr Prior said CQC had identified about 45 hospitals which have had serious problems dating back around five years and that in future regulators will take a “much clearer” approach in advising which hospitals should not be allowed to continue as they are.

    Liberals have rose colored glasses when it comes to single payer. I am just hoping more intelligent adults will actually look at the pros and cons before going all Pelosi on us and imposing poorly thought out systems on this country. I mean, look what they did to Detroit.

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/health/healthnews/10045298/Emergency-care-in-crisis-admits-NHS-regulator.html

     
    • kmgtwo

      October 26, 2013 at 5:01 pm

      You do realize there is a difference between single payer and nationalized health care, don’t you?

       
  7. rustybrown2012

    October 26, 2013 at 4:30 pm

    Oh boy, here we go now. Although it’s been pointed out that study after study concludes SP is a far superior health care system than our own in almost every measurable category; although the entire industrialized world has SP or some other national program for it’s citizens, some going back for over a century – because these systems are not PERFECT, they should not be considered. Cue the anecdotal horror stories and bad press highlighting some struggles and growing pains. Of course, we could play that game all day and more than match the negativity with hair-curling stories from our own system because, as I’ve shown, our system is clearly inferior. But grown-ups know that any comprehensive health care system will be imperfect and have challenges, but challenges that can be overcome. Nobody has rose colored glasses here Cluster; it’s just that we don’t wear shit colored ones like yours.

     
  8. kmgtwo

    October 26, 2013 at 5:03 pm

    Cluster, were you going to explain how to reduce costs with your ala carte system, specifically with the problem of risk pools?

     
  9. casper

    October 26, 2013 at 6:16 pm

    A couple of comments. Yes the website for ACA has sucked, but the website isn’t the law and any law takes time to implement. Second, no system is perfect, but single payer has a history of relative success compared to other systems.

     
  10. cluster

    October 26, 2013 at 7:38 pm

    Crusty,

    You left voluntarily once before because you’re a dumb ass, and if you keep up comments like this, I will make sure you’re permanently gone. Got that Mr. Piazza?

    KMG,

    America does have national government administered healthcare; Medicare, Medicaid, VA combined with the myriad of other state administered programs. Many of them are good, many have challenges, and most of them will require some reforms to stay financially viable. These programs can be strengthened by reforms, and we can still offer the rest of population a free market based system. For whatever reason, you guys just aren’t happy with allowing people to choose.

    America has the best healthcare in the world; the best doctors, the best research and the best hospitals. Paying more for healthcare than the rest of the world is not all bad – I put a priority on health therefore we have to pay for it. SP is not proven to be a better system despite what dumb ass says.

    Casper,

    The website should have been the easiest part of the program to administer.

     
    • rustybrown2012

      October 26, 2013 at 8:36 pm

      Cluster,

      Take a breath and untwist your panties; didn’t know your sensibilities were so fragile…

       
      • Cluster

        October 27, 2013 at 5:16 am

        It’s your lack of critical thinking skills and immature victory parades that are so insufferable. I could not care less what you say of me, because I couldn’t give two shits about you, but you may need to be banned if you keep it up if only to raise the overall intelligence level of the blog.

         
      • rustybrown2012

        October 27, 2013 at 9:05 am

        Cluster,

        My post at 10/26, 4:30 was no more snarky or insufferable than the one I was responding to – you know, your post at 3:57 where you derisively compare me and others to Pelosi, accused us of being naive and stupid and blame Detroit’s collapse entirely on Liberals (great critical analysis there, way to make the blog more intelligent and classy). My sincere apologies for falling below the lofty standards you set! No, you’re upset because you have lame arguments and you always lose; what makes it worse is that you dish it out but can’t take it. I’m sure that’s quite clear to everybody.

        Anybody surprised it’s the tea-bagger who’s the first one to call for censorship on this blog?

         
      • Cluster

        October 27, 2013 at 9:53 am

        Mitch has already banned tiredoflibs – so it will have to be pointed out that it was a liberal who was the first to censor on this blog. And all of you have expressed a desire to not allow Amazona to ever post, so please tell me again how I was the first one to censor. And for the record, I do not belong to a tea party, so now you are wrong on both accounts.

        What I always find humorous about your amateurish analysis, is that you never acknowledge the validity of the opposing argument no matter what. You live in a bubble, and your lack of critical analysis on every issue is juvenile – even more so than your self proclaimed victories and subsequent victory dances. You are the resident clown.

         
      • mitchethekid

        October 27, 2013 at 10:46 am

        Cluster is right, I did ban them. I suppose you can call it a personal vendetta. Am I a hypocrite in this? I sure am! Was it originally based on a different political ideology and points of view? Yes, but I think all of us know why they are not recognized. They are simply not the sort of people who are capable of an exchange of ideas and points of view with out defaulting to verbal violence and juvenile mocking. They share a shrinking but fortified right wing bubble that I consider to be an infection on the body politic. I consider their hostility towards everything that is not mindless radical conservatism and unquestioningly reactionary to be a disease that I want no part of. The public figures whom they admire are unAmerican,anti democratic and should be arrested for sedition. They have no respect for the legislative process, they hate government and they are actively seeking to undermine the constitution. And all the while they claim that they are the “real Americans”. With all of that said, not a one of them is welcome here and for good reason. A reason that both Cluster and I agree upon. Primarily because we are bigger and better people.

         
      • rustybrown2012

        October 27, 2013 at 10:18 am

        That’s rich! Yeah, you’re no tea-bagger – you just subscribe to all of their views and mindlessly parrot their idiotic talking points.

        All your criticisms of me are projections of yourself. You truly are clueless, alarmingly thin-skinned and yes, clownish.

        And for the record, I’ll point out again that my contributions to this thread were free of vitriol before you started slinging insults.

         
    • kmgtwo

      October 26, 2013 at 9:06 pm

      What does that have to do with self-selection and risk pools?

       
    • casper

      October 27, 2013 at 6:54 am

      “Casper,

      The website should have been the easiest part of the program to administer.”

      Which means it will also be the easiest part to fix. There have been a lot of website fails over the years, many of them by tech companies that should know better, yet they do get turned around.

       
      • Cluster

        October 27, 2013 at 7:13 am

        They had 3 years and hundreds of millions of dollars. It wasn’t the tech company that failed, it was the bureaucrats and their oversight, or lack thereof. And the fact that they delayed implementing final regulations until after the election for purely partisan reasons.

        Honestly, all of you guys are comical in your excuse making for this administration. I would be embarrassed if I were you. None of you display any critical, or objective thought.

         
    • rustybrown2012

      October 27, 2013 at 9:25 am

      “America has the best healthcare in the world”

      Even if that were true, and it’s far from certain that it is, the problem is that too many people don’t have access to it. A restaurant could have the best steak in town but if it costs $1000 a plate, that excludes most of us from enjoying it.

      “Paying more for healthcare than the rest of the world is not all bad”

      Yes it is, when you are paying a vast amount more and getting less for it, as numerous studies and objective comparisons point out.

       
  11. rustybrown2012

    October 26, 2013 at 8:40 pm

    …or that you’re incapable of grasping a metaphor.

     
 
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