Sunday, July 1, 2012

Why Is Being Mandated to Pay Auto Insurance Not a Tax?

When both the left and the right think the Supreme Court was wrong on Obamacare I don't know whether I'm coming or going ------
I line up with Reality-Based Educator in most ways. Certainly on the single payer -- extend Medicare to all position on health care (See his comment below this post at NYC Educator.)

Before going on, your homework is to check this LINK:
I have been most influenced by my wife who spent 35 years working in hospitals on the admin/billing end. She dealt with all the blood-sucking insurance companies and had the most respect for the government people at Medicare who were the most responsive and competent and caring to try to do the right thing. OK, so it's just anecdotal but don't expect me to bother doing any real research other than talk to her.

Anyway, she has been a confirmed single-payer advocate. But as she pointed out when I sent her RBE's comments, we weren't getting that so she was rooting for SCOTUS to back Obamacare. In fact, I've rarely seen her so engaged in a political outcome as this one. (I was fairly ho-hum in comparison.)

I am caught between RBE and my wife but as a hard head lean toward RBE -- except that coming down as anti-Obamacare lines me up with Republican slime.

Then at the gym yesterday I got into 2 discussions with anti-Obamacare people, one a UFT member and the other a right leaning businessman who hates Obama with a passion -- he opened the discussion by saying, "I hear Obama is moving to Egypt to join his brothers." In both discussions I brought up the car insurance issue - I know the response is that it is states not feds -- but the concept is sure the same as a mandate.

Apparently the UFT member didn't know that at 65 he will be tossed out of his health care program and MANDATED into medicare, a truism since, oh, the mid-60s. So why not just extend that to all? Expensive -- yes. But as my wife points out less expensive than the other options. And as my wife always says, if they got the fraud out of the system it would be real manageable. Imagine if hey hired people like my wife who knows the system inside and out to be bounty hunters -- offer them a % for finding fraud. I could buy that pink Cadillac.

I asked the right winger who is in his 70s if he was unhappy with medicare. Not. Then I brought up the deals about keeping us from buying drugs in Canada. Know what he said? Exactly what the UFT member said to me a few minutes before --- Canada doesn't regulate their drugs as effectively as the FDA -- you know, that awful fed govt agency. He read an article. I asked if he checked to see if any of the drug companies were behind that article (bet they were.). He smiled and wandered off --- finding it easier to work out than argue with me.

Here is RBE's comment followed by a response by NYC Educator:

Yesterday's SCOTUS ruling was a loss, in my opinion.  The federal gov't now has the legal right to force everybody to buy crappy private insurance - no matter how little money you have or whether you'll actually be able to use it once you pay for the premiums.  You don't buy the crappy, expensive insurance, you get penalized via the IRS.  Yesterday's ruling also enshrines the private insurance monopoly.  Say goodbye to ever getting single payer. And finally, those of us with health insurance provided by our employers will soon be dropped from these plans, as the Obama plan rewards companies that drop employer-provided health insurance and penalizes companies that do provide it.

Here's a good quote on Obamacare:

"What this bill does is not only permit the commercial insurance industry to remain in place, but it actually expands and cements their position as the lynchpin of health care reform. And these companies they profit by denying health care, not providing health care. And they will be able to charge whatever they like. So if they're regulated in some way and it cuts into their profits, all they have to do is just raise their premiums. And they'll do that. Not only does it keep them in place, but it pours about 500 billion dollars of public money into these companies over 10 years. And it mandates that people buy these companies' products for whatever they charge. Now that's a recipe for the growth in health care costs, not only to continue, but to skyrocket, to grow even faster. "

Marcia Angell, Harvard Medical School, editor-in-chief of the New England Journal of Medicine

And here's another:
"The real losers in the latest Supreme Court decision, however, are the people of the United States. Not those who will be  required to go out and buy some over-priced, minimal coverage, rip-off insurance plan offered by the private insurance industry, or to pay a  “tax” to the IRS for not doing so, but everyone. This is because the  Affordable Health Care Act is not affordable. It does little or nothing to control health care costs, which are destined
to continue to gobble up an ever increasing amount of the total US Gross Domestic Product as well as of corporate profits and families’ incomes.

The new federal version of Romneycare simply prolongs the day when the US finally does what it should have done decades ago, should have  done during the first Clinton administration, and should have done at the start of the Obama administration: namely expanding Medicare to  cover all Americans.

Instead of going for this option when he had broad and enthusiastic support as the newly elected president, Obama deliberately shut out all discussion of the Canadian-style approach to national health coverage — a national program of government insurance for all, with doctors’ rates and hospital charges negotiated by the government — and instead devised a
scheme that leaves the whole payment system in the hands of the private insurance industry, and effectively lets doctors and hospitals charge what they can get away with.
Obama did this because he was a huge recipient of money from all sectors of the health care industry — the insurance companies, the hospital companies, the American Medical Association, the big pharmaceutical firms, and the medical supply firms.

ObamaRomneyCare is at its core an enrichment scheme for nearly all elements of the Medical Industrial Complex, with the possible exception of the lowly family practice physician, nurses, and hospital workers."


It also insures my daughter and all children of insured families to age 26, and I have read it provides subsidies for some. Tax is minimal, like one percent, and I believe a program like this can be improved. I agree with much of what you wrote, however. Much of the negativity presented already exists, so you're right, that does not represent improvement.

1 comment:

  1. I think when we see a big change in my GHI coverage because of the Cadillac Tax, I will be furious. I don't consider my GHI 1970 schedule to be anywhere near a Cadillac policy.

    btw, most of my doctors only had good things to say about Medicare.


Comments are welcome. Irrelevant and abusive comments will be deleted, as will all commercial links. Comment moderation is on, so if your comment does not appear it is because I have not been at my computer (I do not do cell phone moderating). Or because your comment is irrelevant or idiotic.