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Old 05-30-2007, 08:10 AM   #61
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Cut-Throat, news flash....we're talking health care here not the war! I have no faith that the government can do a decent job at handling universal healthcare. I have no idea what the solution is but I do know whatever the solution is it will require a well thought out plan...not a half baked idea to get the masses behind a candidate. You can promise the moon but if you have no PLAN on how to deliver it, it's just a bunch of useless babble. I recall the Clinton's used universal health care during one of their campaigns but didn't have success at getting their idea off the ground.
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Old 05-30-2007, 08:18 AM   #62
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I'll bet this whole socialized education system and socialized retirement program stuff really gets you hot under the collar as well.

Not to mention thousands of your tax dollars going to build roads and bridges in places you've never been or will go to in your lifetime.

Thats just gotta burn you up.
Oh, please! You know that has nothing to do with my rant. I'm trying to be realistic here. Medicare and Medicaid already take up more of the national budget than defense, and that only covers less than half of Americans. I think we can safely say it will cost another $trillion dollars to implement "Medicare for All". You should be thinking about the impact to the economy, too. Nationalized Healthcare could have a serious affect on your retirement portfolio. If you think the defense budget is having a negative impact on the economy, wait until we have to come up with another Trillion to pay for national healthcare. I sure hope that none of your mutual funds are invested in anything to do with private healthcare.
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Old 05-30-2007, 08:21 AM   #63
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MKLD, I get the impression that some people on this board have never ran or owned a business. Some people believe evil rich business owners sit back and collect all the money. That isn't always the case. I have been on both sides of that coin. There are good and bad points to being an empolyer and an employee. Money doesn't grow on trees and you can't keep taking from those of us who work hard, save a few pennies for the future and are willing to risk our home by using them as collateral to get a business off the ground or sustain it during a slump.
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Old 05-30-2007, 08:26 AM   #64
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Its got everything to do with it. Some programs have to be for everyone, not just the rich or lucky.

As far as these random dollar amounts and scary outcomes, I doubt theres any basis in reality for any of that.

But i'll make a deal with you. I'll be glad to keep paying $1400 for health care if you can arrange to have refunded to me all the taxes I paid for public schools for the 30 years I didnt have kids, and all the taxes I paid for roads built more than 50 miles away from where I live. Oh yeah, and assure me that i'll get all the money out of social security I've put in.
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Old 05-30-2007, 08:26 AM   #65
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C-T's point, I believe, is that if we weren't "wasting" money in Iraq, we'd have more to "invest" in a healthcare solution.

MKLD has good points about costs, rationing, etc., though, frankly, "solving" the issue of universal coverage does not necessarily mean we'll get a govt. healthcare system...

Certainly, starting a new govt. program without any idea of the real cost, or, even worse, sweeping those costs under the proverbial rug, has gotten us where we are today vis a vis deficits, unfunded liabilities, etc. Think prescription drug program for Medicare.

To paraphrase one Alan Greenspan, social programs are not economic decisions; they're political decisions. Theory says that a free-market is the most efficient at generating "overall" economic growth. However, maximum economic growth might not be the optimum outcome politically/socically.
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Old 05-30-2007, 08:29 AM   #66
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I'll bet this whole socialized education system...
Actually, this is a problem. Look at the rise in inflation-adjusted per-pupil spending on education since 1920 (the 'constant 2004-2005 dollars' results are in the rightmost columns):

Total and current expenditure per pupil in public elementary and secondary schools: Selected years, 1919-20 through 2002-03

1920: $401 per pupil
1950: $1511 per pupil
1960: $2286 per pupil
1970: $3812 per pupil
1980: $5157 per pupil
1990: $7009 per pupil
2000: $7827 per pupil
2003: $8468 per pupil

Again, these are all inflation-adjusted. So when will we stop giving a knee-jerk rubber stamp to school bond measures? No one can look at this and tell me the problem with the schools is that they need more money. It costs almost 4x as much in *real* dollars to educate a child today as it did in 1960. Is the education 4x better?

I support public education but the bottomless pit needs to stop. Too many people just can't say "no" to education, regardless of the facts.

And why should we think cost control is going to be better with government-sponsored health care?
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Old 05-30-2007, 08:55 AM   #67
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Its got everything to do with it. Some programs have to be for everyone, not just the rich or lucky.

As far as these random dollar amounts and scary outcomes, I doubt theres any basis in reality for any of that.

But i'll make a deal with you. I'll be glad to keep paying $1400 for health care if you can arrange to have refunded to me all the taxes I paid for public schools for the 30 years I didnt have kids, and all the taxes I paid for roads built more than 50 miles away from where I live. Oh yeah, and assure me that i'll get all the money out of social security I've put in.
Give me a break! If you're really as healthy as you claim you are, why not just self fund your healthcare, and stop paying the $1400/mo? Better yet, why not just try again with a different carrier and buy a catastrophic plan? That liver issue is a fluke, and I can almost guarantee you an agent could get you covered under a different plan if you persued it. Your child could probably be covered under a Cadillac BCBS blue preferred plan for approx $100 or less per month, and then you wouldn't have to pay the family rate for guaranteed coverage anymore. You've bragged about how rich you are....Why are you wasting so much money on a Cadillac plan? You do have choices. Why should everyone else be financially burdened so you can keep Cadillac coverage that you don't even really need? Maybe healthcare costs would come down if people would stop buying Cadillac plans when they don't even need them. The mentality of purchasing a $1400/mo healthcare plan just so you can have a $100 office visit covered in case you need to go to the Dr. seems silly to me....especially if you're rich, and can easily afford a high deductible.

I don't think my figures are that unrealistic. I'm using actual data (ie..current cost of Medicaid and Medicare, and current cost of guaranteed issue family coverage to come up with some estimates.) I don't think it's unrealistic to assume that to cover all Americans, we might be looking at another $Trillion in today's dollars. That's how much Medicare and Medicaid cost, and that doesn't even cover half of all Americans.

We are always going to have to have some kind of National Defense budget. Obviously, it's way up there right now, and we might be able to move about 1/2 of it over to a nationlized plan if the war didn't exist, but we can't count on defense spending going down anytime soon, so if Obama really plans to implement a government managed healthcare system in the next few years, we've got to think about how much that's going to cost, and where the money's going to come from, and what kind of impact it's going to have on the economy. If you raise taxes by 10 or 20% to the middle class and rich, unemployment rates will rise, and that may mean possibly less income tax revenue for the government. Now, you've successfully punished the rich and at the same time, reduced revenue. What happens after that?
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Old 05-30-2007, 08:59 AM   #68
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I see you've researched my families health issues about as well as you've researched the implications of a universal health care system
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Old 05-30-2007, 09:19 AM   #69
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I see you've researched my families health issues about as well as you've researched the implications of a universal health care system
Hey - you're the one who said the only reason BCBS declined you was because of a silly bogus liver test from five years ago! Oh wait - is there more to the story that you conveniently left out? Why not separate your coverage from your spouse's and get yourself an individual policy if you are really that healthy? I know you mentioned that your spouse has asthma. Did you know there are several carriers out there that now will cover asthmatics (depending on severity) in the individual market? Blue Cross and Aetna are among the few.
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Old 05-30-2007, 09:24 AM   #70
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C-T's point, I believe, is that if we weren't "wasting" money in Iraq, we'd have more to "invest" in a healthcare solution.
True, but C-T is always complaining about our big deficits, so he has already earmarked the Iraq savings for deficit reduction. He can't have it both ways.
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Old 05-30-2007, 09:57 AM   #71
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Ah yes, the piece of data taken from context, time frames also removed.

The BC/BS denial was 5 years ago, for a test 5 years before that. Both my wife and I currently have preexisting conditions for which absolutely no insurer will carry.

So we're sort of in need of the 'Cadillac' policy.

As far as the other 'data', its equally taken from context and disassociated from its purpose.

In the equation if a=b and b=c, you cant throw a little d, e, and f into it and decide that a=d+e+f. Many of these costs and 'taxes' already exist, they would be simply repurposed, not added in a second time. And are you really feeling good about comparing the costs of a program that services the oldest, least healthy segment of the population as an indicator for the costs of a broad spectrum of people?

Again, you're stuck on making up figures and problems that are unrealistic for a particular program that I dont think we can afford to NOT have.

But i'm not going to change your mind, its quite clearly made up. And I can assure that you will not change mine.

Perhaps it'd be beneficial to everyone concerned if you stopped blowing up any medical thread with these wild opinions? I've tried to have a little fun with it, but frankly its become boring and repetitive.
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Old 05-30-2007, 10:00 AM   #72
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True, but C-T is always complaining about our big deficits, so he has already earmarked the Iraq savings for deficit reduction. He can't have it both ways.
I don't mean to defend C-T, nor do I speak for him. I was trying to use C-T on one hand, and MKLD on the other, to illustrate in part the pov of the left v. right, and then find a center...
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Old 05-30-2007, 10:05 AM   #73
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Well - I can see from the chart that it's all Clinton's fault.

BTY - suited up last evening and hauled off to a 6th grade graduation - yes 6th graders graduate with certificates, awards, singing and free cake and punch. Parents take pictures and drag friends to attend. I talked to a few of the kids:

a. Volunteers to make a simulation model to totally solve the health issue - provided the parents are kept out of it.

b. Grown-ups are stupid and have it totally backward - need to reward good health/don't get sick/spend money in the first place - duh sort of like LYBM.

c. All volunteers would need to get witness protection and new identities in Missoula.

I gave up on the idea. Why ruin a good kid>

heh heh heh - like we're gonna solve it here. .
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Old 05-30-2007, 10:12 AM   #74
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I don't mean to defend C-T, nor do I speak for him. I was trying to use C-T on one hand, and MKLD on the other, to illustrate in part the pov of the left v. right, and then find a center...
Unfortunately, the primary system in the U.S. prevents us from finding a sane "center" in power. It tends to give us lefty extremist versus righty extremist in the general election, and those in the middle generally lose because they can't capture their party's base.
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Old 05-30-2007, 11:18 AM   #75
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Ah yes, the piece of data taken from context, time frames also removed.
Well, I'm not a mind reader...of course I used info. from your earlier posts to make a point. That's all I had to go by.

I think you're sadly mistaken on the cost savings you'd get by nationalizing. IMO, there won't be any savings....even if you can prevent some of the cost shifting by covering illegal immigrants and poor people with "better programs", there aren't going to be any savings. Once people have free access to unlimited care, costs, IMO will skyrocket.

Right now, the private sector makes up for about 1/2 of all health spending, yet even with all that profit taking, and broker commissions, and the admin costs, the private sector still covers millions more people than Medicaid and Medicare together, AND reimburses doctors at better rates, at about the same pricetag as Medicare and Medicaid. I don't see how the gov't will be more efficient.
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Old 05-30-2007, 11:36 AM   #76
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Right now, the private sector makes up for about 1/2 of all health spending, yet even with all that profit taking, and broker commissions, and the admin costs, the private sector still covers millions more people than Medicaid and Medicare together, AND reimburses doctors at better rates, at about the same pricetag as Medicare and Medicaid. I don't see how the gov't will be more efficient.
To make your point, you are implying that the private sector is covering a population which at comparable risk to the Medicaid/Medicare population.

Wow.

Your argument is specious.
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Old 05-30-2007, 11:55 AM   #77
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In many other posts I've made mention of the problems we'd have with getting insured outside of a group plan...its the primary reason my wife still works a few days a week.

And I never said anything about cost savings. Merely that much of this scary huge cost to run a universal program is already levied and spent...not some huge incremental cost.

I'm paying extra for insurance to cover all the overhead and bureaucracy. And to pay for people without insurance who are treated in emergency rooms. And to pay for people who are self destructive in their lifestyle choices. You focus that money onto the real problem and strip away all of the crapola, I think you've got 80-90% of the cost right there. You throw in some preventative care and maybe you get a little cost savings in the long run.

By the way, on that point about self destructiveness, I dont think people should receive insurance for situations they create themselves. Some level of self responsibility needs to be engaged. If you smoke and get lung cancer...tough. If you drive without a seatbelt or ride without a helmet and crash and screw yourself up...tough. If you're fat and drink too much and dont exercise and get diabetes and need a liver transplant...get out your wallet.

But people living a reasonable life and taking reasonable precautions that get sick or injured? Everyone should be equally covered and getting and paying for care should be easy and highly accessible.

Rich - I made the same point above. It seems this case will be made on the merits of worst possible scenarios wherever possible.


So anyhow, i'm thinking of something along the lines of suze orman eating a kayak with a whole group of lobsters attacking the kayak...maybe with some small flaming chickens shooting out of the lobsters butts.

Is that just too excessive? I'm quite willing to substitute Dr. Phil for Suze Orman. And i'm not married to having the chickens shooting out of the lobsters butts...
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Old 05-30-2007, 12:04 PM   #78
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By the way, on that last point, I dont think people should receive insurance for situations they create themselves. Some level of self responsibility needs to be engaged. If you smoke and get lung cancer...tough. If you drive without a seatbelt or ride without a helmet and crash and screw yourself up...tough. If you're fat and drink too much and dont exercise and get diabetes and need a liver transplant...get out your wallet.
Not to digress from the main points about which we agree wholeheartedly, but the problem with the above scenario is what is meant by "tough." If the victims of self-abuse have to pay themselves, they will quickly go bankrupt and guess who ends up paying. If a patient with lung cancer comes to me and has smoked for 40 years, I can't just say sorry, can't help you out. If a motorcyclist comes to me with half a head, I take care of them first and don't even think about reimbursement, but you know who pays. Unlike most free-market service industries, we don't have the ability to withhold or cancel the services for nonpayment.

So while it would be nice to make the abusers more accountable, implementing that at the sharp end just doesn't work. Better to raise the taxes on booze, tobacco, motorcycle licenses and other nonessential, known-to-be-a-health-risk services and products. Of course, even that has its problems (try taxing cocaine or meth).

Bottom line is that we're in this together, fairly or not, and we need a solution that covers everyone.
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Old 05-30-2007, 12:07 PM   #79
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As I stated in an earlier post one health care insurance company had gross income of 75 billion dollars. As I recall that is the about the projected costs of Obama's plan. Remember that is just one insurance company. So there is money already in the system to provide health care for everyone at affordable prices. That insurance company had net income of 7 billion dollars. With that kind of money floating around there must be away to solve our broken health care system.
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Old 05-30-2007, 12:09 PM   #80
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Better to raise the taxes on booze, tobacco, motorcycle licenses and other nonessential, know-to-be-a-health-risk services and products.
This could work, provided that the "sin taxes" raised were actually used to pay the additional cost of health care for those who use these products, and not used to pad the general fund.

Look at what some of the states have done with all the tobacco settlement money. They sued ostensibly to recover the costs of caring for sick smokers; many of them are using the money for other things.

Also, to assess the true cost to American society, one has to offset the added cost of treating smokers/drinkers/junk food eaters with the reduced cost to Social Security. They die sooner on average, and therefore collect less in benefits, right?
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