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Re: Bush's Health Plan--merged threads
Old 01-23-2007, 06:00 AM   #41
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Re: Bush's Health Plan--merged threads

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Originally Posted by Hydroman
How about pulling out of Iraq, quit awarding non-competitive contracts to Haliburton and ending pork barrel projects like "the bridge to know where" in Alaska?
1) Can't now it would result in an even more unstable situation costing more than it is costing to stay.

2) If there was someone who could have done the contracts in the time and manner needed there would have been competition.

3) Good idea.
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Re: Bush's Health Plan--merged threads
Old 01-23-2007, 07:40 AM   #42
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Re: Bush's Health Plan--merged threads

I agree with symmetrical tax treatment and even suggest implementing a flat tax system to cut out all the goobily goop that favors the upper and lower incomes,while the middle class gets screwed. Aren't we afterall, a country of predominantly middle class people. Also, agree that legislature should be enacted by voting on only one bill at a time; not taking a good idea and then adding on 100 non-related bad ideas to get the original bill passed.
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Re: Bush's Health Plan--merged threads
Old 01-23-2007, 08:36 AM   #43
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Re: Bush's Health Plan--merged threads

Here's an article that decribes the tax deduction in a bit greater detail:

http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20070121/..._healthcare_dc.

"Currently, employees who receive health coverage through their jobs do not pay taxes on the benefit. Bush would cap the amount of coverage that would be considered tax-free. Anything above that would be taxed as income. The limit for deductions would be $15,000 for families and $7,500 for individuals. The average cost of family health coverage is $11,500."

"For example, a family who bought a $10,000 plan could still take the full $15,000 deduction and pocket the extra money."

"This is essentially a standard deduction for health care, and the size of the deduction will be significantly higher than the cost of an average policy," said a senior White House official. "Because of this, about 80 percent of people with employer-based plans will see their tax liability fall because their insurance policies cost less than the deduction."

I see this as as a great incentive for those who are uninsured by choice to purchase an HSA and put the extra money aside to plan for the deductible.

Let's Retire: One good thing about this plan is it will encourage people to open up HSAs, and inherent in these plan designs is incentive for people to use their healthcare wisely and not go to the Dr. for every little sniffle and sneeze. Even if we cover a lot of low income folks with a tax credit, providing them enough extra money to fund their deductible in an HSA, they will have incentive to use wisely...or lose the advantage of having the savings account in tact. However, you are correct...I do think that it will be hard to control inflation after we flood the market with millions more insured people. Prices of healthcare will inevetably go up. On the other hand, having several more million healthy people in the pool should help curb the rise in insurance premiums.
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Re: Bush's Health Plan--merged threads
Old 01-23-2007, 08:45 AM   #44
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Re: Bush's Health Plan--merged threads

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I see this as as a great incentive for those who are uninsured by choice to purchase an HSA and put the extra money aside to plan for the deductible.
Yes, both of them. They live in a magical land with both conservative republican gay men, the three black men against affirmative action, and both Baptist liberals.

I have a sneaking suspicion that this pandering nonsense will result in those of us living in the states that already provide most of the tax revenue (blue states) for the benefit of flyover country (red states) will be milked a little more. But since this is going nowhere, it doesn't really matter.
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Re: Bush's Health Plan--merged threads
Old 01-23-2007, 09:03 AM   #45
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Re: Bush's Health Plan--merged threads

Brewer I guess the fact that 10% of the country's wealth (per a Mortgage industry study from 2004) is located in Florida interferes with you assumption. The last time I checked Florida was very red.
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Re: Bush's Health Plan--merged threads
Old 01-23-2007, 09:11 AM   #46
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Re: Bush's Health Plan--merged threads

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Originally Posted by lets-retire
Brewer I guess the fact that 10% of the country's wealth (per a Mortgage industry study from 2004) is located in Florida interferes with you assumption. The last time I checked Florida was very red.
And a large chunk of that wealth is due to retirees from blue states moving to "America's Wang."
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Re: Bush's Health Plan--merged threads
Old 01-23-2007, 09:20 AM   #47
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Re: Bush's Health Plan--merged threads

And since no one else has said it, "National Sales Tax." To finance the Spanish-American War, of course.
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Re: Bush's Health Plan--merged threads
Old 01-23-2007, 09:27 AM   #48
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Re: Bush's Health Plan--merged threads

Actually I think it's largely due to the fact that many highly paid celebrities/CEOs have Florida listed as their home state, due to no state income taxes. Although the retirees are a large number they just typically don't, have the huge estates of the celebrities/CEOs. When you have someone like Preston/Travolta and compare their worth to the retiree's, you can see where it takes many, many retirees just to equal that wealth. I can name several other very highly paid celebrities/CEOs just on the west coast of Florida, but won't bore you with the list.
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Re: Bush's Health Plan--merged threads
Old 01-23-2007, 09:37 AM   #49
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Re: Bush's Health Plan--merged threads

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Originally Posted by lets-retire
Actually I think it's largely due to the fact that many highly paid celebrities/CEOs have Florida listed as their home state, due to no state income taxes. Although the retirees are a large number they just typically don't, have the huge estates of the celebrities/CEOs. When you have someone like Preston/Travolta and compare their worth to the retiree's, you can see where it takes many, many retirees just to equal that wealth. I can name several other very highly paid celebrities/CEOs just on the west coast of Florida, but won't bore you with the list.
Perhaps. I'd hazard a guess that a lot of those folks would not be voting for chimpy in the last election.
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Re: Bush's Health Plan--merged threads
Old 01-23-2007, 09:48 AM   #50
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Re: Bush's Health Plan--merged threads

From MKLD's link -

"Bush's proposal would for the first time allow people to take a tax deduction -- similar to the one used by homeowners for their mortgage costs -- when they buy health coverage on their own instead of through an employer."

I assume this is another example of a reporter not knowing what she is talking about (or maybe just sloppy writing). If the deduction is like home mortgage interest, it would require itemizing on schedule A. I would assume the proposal would be to give an above the line deduction similar to an IRA (not mortgage interest), which would help more middle-class folks. Does anyone know more about how this is really supposed to work?
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Re: Bush's Health Plan--merged threads
Old 01-23-2007, 10:20 AM   #51
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Re: Bush's Health Plan--merged threads

Quote:
Originally Posted by FIRE'd@51
From MKLD's link -

"Bush's proposal would for the first time allow people to take a tax deduction -- similar to the one used by homeowners for their mortgage costs -- when they buy health coverage on their own instead of through an employer."

I assume this is another example of a reporter not knowing what she is talking about (or maybe just sloppy writing). If the deduction is like home mortgage interest, it would require itemizing on schedule A. I would assume the proposal would be to give an above the line deduction similar to an IRA (not mortgage interest), which would help more middle-class folks. Does anyone know more about how this is really supposed to work?
We might know more after the presidents speech tonight. What I heard is that it would be a "standard deduction" of $15,000 on joint returns for family coverage or $7500 for single coverage, in the nature of an above the line deduction.

Wyden, who has promoted a national plan through regulation of insurance companies, has come out with the same criticism I mentioned above--the plan does nothing to fix the broken market where insurance companies are allowed to cherry pick. It will do nothing to make insurance either available or affordable to the less healthy and older groups.
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Re: Bush's Health Plan--merged threads
Old 01-23-2007, 10:23 AM   #52
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Re: Bush's Health Plan--merged threads

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It will do nothing to make insurance either available or affordable to the less healthy and older groups.
That's the biggest problem. The people who are most at risk and least able to afford coverage won't have a magic fix appear from a tax deduction. And since the free-spending Rethuglican congress is gone, I can't see this boondoggle going anywhere.
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Re: Bush's Health Plan--merged threads
Old 01-23-2007, 10:34 AM   #53
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Re: Bush's Health Plan--merged threads

Quote:
Originally Posted by Martha
Wyden, who has promoted a national plan through regulation of insurance companies, has come out with the same criticism I mentioned above--the plan does nothing to fix the broken market where insurance companies are allowed to cherry pick. It will do nothing to make insurance either available or affordable to the less healthy and older groups.
Martha,
My husband is a little more in tune with the legislation than I am, but we were talking about this last night, and he is under the impression that a tax CREDIT will be proposed for the low income folks, so if that's the case then the plan will help the less healthy and older groups. Especially if the credit exceeds the premium enough to allow them to open an HSA and put the whole balance in an HSA account to help pay for deductible expenses.
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Re: Bush's Health Plan--merged threads
Old 01-23-2007, 10:37 AM   #54
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Re: Bush's Health Plan--merged threads

Martha--I think it might even exacerbate the problem. I could see the insurance companies having premiums in line with the standard deduction. So my $4100 employer provided policy would now cost closer to $7500.

This is a common practice with rents around military bases. Landlords of detached housing will check the housing allowance rates for their target occupant's rank and charge accordingly.
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Re: Bush's Health Plan--merged threads
Old 01-23-2007, 10:39 AM   #55
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Re: Bush's Health Plan--merged threads

Quote:
Originally Posted by Martha
What I heard is that it would be a "standard deduction" of $15,000 on joint returns for family coverage or $7500 for single coverage, in the nature of an above the line deduction.
Thanks, Martha.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Martha
Wyden, who has promoted a national plan through regulation of insurance companies, has come out with the same criticism I mentioned above--the plan does nothing to fix the broken market where insurance companies are allowed to cherry pick. It will do nothing to make insurance either available or affordable to the less healthy and older groups.
I agree with you on this part. It seems to me a very large part of the problem with our health insurance system is access. So far, Wyden's plan is the only serious one I have seen that seems to deal with that problem. BTW, I haven't heard anymore about Wyden's proposal since he introduced it. I guess it's been completely overshadowed by Iraq (which is understandable).
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Re: Bush's Health Plan--merged threads
Old 01-23-2007, 11:11 AM   #56
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Re: Bush's Health Plan--merged threads

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Originally Posted by FIRE'd@51
It seems to me a very large part of the problem with our health insurance system is access. So far, Wyden's plan is the only serious one I have seen that seems to deal with that problem. I guess it's been completely overshadowed by Iraq (which is understandable).
Hi Fire'd. You might be interested in this document published by NATIONAL CENTER FOR POLICY ANALYSIS, regarding the uninsured and access issues.

http://www.ncpa.org/pub/ba/ba460/

(it is a little outdated, but provides some insight)
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Re: Bush's Health Plan--merged threads
Old 01-23-2007, 06:02 PM   #57
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Re: Bush's Health Plan--merged threads

Here is a really detailed interview regarding the upcoming proposals:

http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/relea...0070122-7.html



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Re: Bush's Health Plan--merged threads
Old 01-23-2007, 07:05 PM   #58
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Re: Bush's Health Plan--merged threads

Quote:
Originally Posted by mykidslovedogs
Hi Fire'd. You might be interested in this document published by NATIONAL CENTER FOR POLICY ANALYSIS, regarding the uninsured and access issues.

http://www.ncpa.org/pub/ba/ba460/

(it is a little outdated, but provides some insight)
The problem with the numbers in that article is that no context is provided for interpretation. For example, the article states: From 1993 to 2002 the number of uninsured people in households with annual incomes above $75,000 increased by 114 percent. This is true based on census numbers. However, what the article does not say is that there was a corresponding increase in the number of households with incomes above $75,000. Other researchers have found that the increase of uninsured in that group basically follows the increase in the number of people in that group.

More telling is the percentage of uninsured in a particular income group and what do those uninsured look like: are they working? are they healthy? are they young? Do they have children? When you look at these numbers you will see that lower-income adults (earning under $20,000 a year) remained the most likely to be uninsured, with over half the people in that group uninsured for at least part of the year. You will also see that 59% of those who were uninsured had chronic health conditions like asthma or diabetes. The Census Bureau, Kaiser Foundation and Commonwealth Fund (http://www.cmwf.org/) have a lot of the numbers.

The Census Bureau reported that we are at 45.8 million uninsured. If you look at how people people were uninsured for part of the year, the number goes up to about 87 million.
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Re: Bush's Health Plan--merged threads
Old 01-23-2007, 07:17 PM   #59
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Re: Bush's Health Plan--merged threads

Quote:
Originally Posted by mykidslovedogs
Here is a really detailed interview regarding the upcoming proposals:

http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/relea...0070122-7.html


Thanks. It confirms that the plan does nothing about access issues and that is left to the states:

Q One other question. For those that are uninsured now, it's arguable that some of them, because they don't have insurance, or have preexisting conditions that might be rejected, or they might have to pay quite a bit more for a standard policy, and how does your plan address --

MS. GOON: Well, this gets back, again, to the Affordable Choices Initiative with the states, and working with the states to encourage better funding of uninsurable risk pools, which many states have, some states don't; but working with the states to really identify how best to target additional subsidies to people who need insurance in that state. In many cases, it will be people who have preexisting conditions, in other cases it will be more of the poor.

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Re: Bush's Health Plan--merged threads
Old 01-23-2007, 08:49 PM   #60
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Re: Bush's Health Plan--merged threads

Quote:
Originally Posted by mykidslovedogs

Here is a really detailed interview regarding the upcoming proposals:

http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/relea...0070122-7.html


Quote from article:

So let me put it another way, your taxable income, if this policy is implemented, will be your wages and anything your employer is paying for health insurance. You're already paying your share out of your wages, so your total taxable income is the check that you get, plus whatever your employer has paid directly to the health insurance company.

**

What changes is that the health insurance premiums that they pay on your behalf becomes taxable income to you just like any other form of wages...



And... just like any other form of wages....
will your employer's cost of your health insurance be
also be subject to Social Security and Medicare taxes

That question was not asked in the article




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