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  1. KAM1138
    KAM1138's Avatar
    #521  
    Quote Originally Posted by xForsaken View Post
    Nice Kam,
    I assume you have a health care insurer?! A nice paying job?! You own your own home?! Have, based on your above posts, an higher then average education?!
    Good on you. I would, however humbly, suggest that not everyone has the above. I would also suggest, that by default, lowering the participation by either of your two evils would automaticly increase the others participation.

    The big bad govt. and insurance companies are things that are needed in this world. Did I say world, yes I did. No longer can America and Americans sit back and believe that everything revolves around them and the country. If your average American can not get what they want/need they will go else where. Perhaps another country to get the services they need.

    Every single economy on this little blue earth, ultimately uses both those things that you wish to see reduced. Some more, some less. The "Broken system" was broken by you, you ultimately are the govt of your nation. To blame anyone other then yourselves is patently idiotic.

    Whether you voted for Obama, Bush, Clinton or the ones that lost, is not the point. This is your govt, you chose it. By the very definition of your type of system, that makes YOU the govt. With no one but yourselves to blame for what has or is about to transpire.

    one person one vote.

    I am sure that you believe that what is happening is not what you voted for, I am sure it isn't, none the less, your elected politicians enacted laws that are good for all, not just a select few. Well ok, I will conceed that yes, many of your laws are enacted to the greater good of a very few.
    You want a better system, run for govt, make changes, do that which you want your present politicians to do. Just remember, when that lobbist comes knocking on your door, offering you the world, badgering you, to the point where you either take what they are offering, or cave in.

    you want to clean up your govt, fix what is broken, then step up, fix it.

    just my two cents worth.
    Well, you are right about one thing, and that is that we elect our government and theoretically they do what we want. Of course, that only applies to the whole, and not to an individual. As a citizen, I am not individually responsible for the government doing things that I don't want, but as a member of the citizenry as a whole I certainly have a piece of that.

    You are also correct--government and insurance ARE needed (today), because they've helped escalate the costs to the point where almost no one (myself included) can afford medical expenses. However, the difference in our opinion seems to be that you want to keep placing power in the hands of those responsible for the problem (not me as an individual citizen, and not likely even the people I vote for). I want to stop letting these people create and expand problems.

    It seems like the basic idea that you (and many others) are forwarding is in fact the dreaded "status quo" which keeps allowing those who have caused the problems have the power and in fact--give them more power, which I believe will make the problem worse.

    You are right--this is our government, and "WE" (the citizens) did collectively choose it. I didn't, and I am working to prevent them from doing more harm--as they've done in the past bringing us to where we are now.

    I don't need to run for office--I'm a citizen, and again, theoretically play a role, which is what I am attempting to do--as a citizen.

    I think your logic is a bit flawed, although I understand what you are shooting for. People that OPPOSE my point of view are the ones that have created these problems, not ones that share my point of view.

    KAM
  2. #522  
    Quote Originally Posted by KAM1138 View Post
    Well, you are right about one thing, and that is that we elect our government and theoretically they do what we want. Of course, that only applies to the whole, and not to an individual. As a citizen, I am not individually responsible for the government doing things that I don't want, but as a member of the citizenry as a whole I certainly have a piece of that.

    You are also correct--government and insurance ARE needed (today), because they've helped escalate the costs to the point where almost no one (myself included) can afford medical expenses. However, the difference in our opinion seems to be that you want to keep placing power in the hands of those responsible for the problem (not me as an individual citizen, and not likely even the people I vote for). I want to stop letting these people create and expand problems.

    It seems like the basic idea that you (and many others) are forwarding is in fact the dreaded "status quo" which keeps allowing those who have caused the problems have the power and in fact--give them more power, which I believe will make the problem worse.

    You are right--this is our government, and "WE" (the citizens) did collectively choose it. I didn't, and I am working to prevent them from doing more harm--as they've done in the past bringing us to where we are now.

    I don't need to run for office--I'm a citizen, and again, theoretically play a role, which is what I am attempting to do--as a citizen.

    I think your logic is a bit flawed, although I understand what you are shooting for. People that OPPOSE my point of view are the ones that have created these problems, not ones that share my point of view.

    KAM
    Actually Kam I am not a citizen of the United States of America. I come from the land a little north of you. Where "big govt." is a fact of life. If as you say, you "didn't" choose your govt, then by my logic you have no right to complain. I make this statement on the basis that you did not vote in your latest, (if you did great), election. I look at it this way, you have approximately 275 million people in your country, each with his or her own point of view of what is right and wrong. When you have enough people with the same or nearly the same point of view, you end up with a majority of people agreeing on a given topic.

    I would again, humbly, suggest that if the laws that are in place, or being put in place are for the good of the majority, then perhaps you need to convince more people to your point of view.
    By the mere fact that these laws are being put in place leads me to believe the majority of Americans, through the right of democracy, want them.

    I have to ask, and perhaps you should ask yourself, if the majority of Americans voted in Obama, and his fellow Democrats, then is not the will of the people being followed? Is not the will being represented by those presently in power? Yes, there are problems, here in Canada as well as south of the old 49th. Presently we have our own "Bush" in control of our govt. Do I like what he has done or is planning on doing, hell no. But nor did I like everything that was happening with prior govts. That is just a fact of life.

    However, I bow to the majority, in both cases, to live in a democracy one must be prepared to give and take. To say otherwise, is nonsense. I am not saying you are demanding change regardless of the cost, but some with the same line of thinking are. I have read and reread many posts here, I can honestly say, that some of these posts scare the hell out of me.

    Take a good long hard look, as a citizen, and tell me I am wrong. If you do not see what I can, then you are going to go down the path that many other great nations of the past have.

    Remember your past, or you could end up repeating it.
  3. KAM1138
    KAM1138's Avatar
    #523  
    Quote Originally Posted by xForsaken View Post
    Actually Kam I am not a citizen of the United States of America. I come from the land a little north of you. Where "big govt." is a fact of life. If as you say, you "didn't" choose your govt, then by my logic you have no right to complain. I make this statement on the basis that you did not vote in your latest, (if you did great), election. I look at it this way, you have approximately 275 million people in your country, each with his or her own point of view of what is right and wrong. When you have enough people with the same or nearly the same point of view, you end up with a majority of people agreeing on a given topic.
    Yeah I got the idea that you weren't a US citizen. I'm sorry if my use of "we" or something similar was confusing if it was.

    Quote Originally Posted by xForsaken View Post
    I would again, humbly, suggest that if the laws that are in place, or being put in place are for the good of the majority, then perhaps you need to convince more people to your point of view.
    By the mere fact that these laws are being put in place leads me to believe the majority of Americans, through the right of democracy, want them.
    That's how it works in theory, but we've gotten quite far away from this in many ways. Additionally, we are not a direct democracy, so it is very possible as a Republic that the majority view does not carry the day.

    Quote Originally Posted by xForsaken View Post
    I have to ask, and perhaps you should ask yourself, if the majority of Americans voted in Obama, and his fellow Democrats, then is not the will of the people being followed? Is not the will being represented by those presently in power? Yes, there are problems, here in Canada as well as south of the old 49th. Presently we have our own "Bush" in control of our govt. Do I like what he has done or is planning on doing, hell no. But nor did I like everything that was happening with prior govts. That is just a fact of life.
    Well, the fact is that candidates lie. A candidate can promise anything they want, but they often ignore that--sometimes blatantly when they get into office, and they throw out whatever excuse they want. Let's look at the "transparency" promise that Candidate Obama harped on. INSTANTLY that went out the door, and they persist at violating that campaign promise continually. They've been directly hypocritical on this--for example.

    Quote Originally Posted by xForsaken View Post
    However, I bow to the majority, in both cases, to live in a democracy one must be prepared to give and take. To say otherwise, is nonsense. I am not saying you are demanding change regardless of the cost, but some with the same line of thinking are. I have read and reread many posts here, I can honestly say, that some of these posts scare the hell out of me.
    Well, I'm not sure about Canada, but because I accept and acknowledge a government, it doesn't mean I agree with it, or am required to agree with it.

    A lot of what is going on in my government scares the hell out of me.

    Quote Originally Posted by xForsaken View Post
    Take a good long hard look, as a citizen, and tell me I am wrong. If you do not see what I can, then you are going to go down the path that many other great nations of the past have.

    Remember your past, or you could end up repeating it.
    I'm not sure what you are referring to, but one of the reasons I oppose these so-called reforms is that it IS repeating and expanding the errors of the past. Government programs regularly overrun their claimed costs, and become massive, continuing drains on the economy. That's what we're looking at here--another massive, corrupt and costly program that THIS time promises to be different.

    I AM remembering my past, but too many of our politicians are eager to repeat those same errors. These so-called reformers are just going back to the same tired (failed) playbook, and there is a limit to how much of this irresponsibility that we can (economically) bear.

    KAM
  4. #524  
    Here's my Union flyer on healthcare: http://www.redhour.us/healthcare%20reform%20flyer.pdf
    Last edited by palandri; 10/23/2009 at 10:56 PM.
    My Phone & My Wife's Phone Two Unlocked GSM Treo Pro's

  5. #525  
    But of course - FACT CHECK: Health insurer profits not so fat - Yahoo! News

    Why am I not surprised about including government ownership of insurance and not taxing premiums. The union wants it every way it can get it. But again, no one will believe the fact check.
  6. #526  
    Quote Originally Posted by bclinger View Post
    But of course - FACT CHECK: Health insurer profits not so fat - Yahoo! News

    Why am I not surprised about including government ownership of insurance and not taxing premiums. The union wants it every way it can get it. But again, no one will believe the fact check.
    Ahh yes. Misrepresentation. The hallmark of the unsurance industry. That's why there's not really a lot of difference between non-profit and for-profit plans. The massive amount of overhead and adminstrative costs. The real measure should be what percent of revenues are actually spent on health care? There are good plans and bad plans. At one point, Kaiser was spending over 90% on actual care. But BCBS runs closer to 75%....i.e. 25% overhead and administrative costs that provide nothing to providers or patients. Just read your own fact check: premiums went up, profits went down, and there certainly hasn't been any increase in coverage. Where did the premium money go? Into the pockets of the executives and employees in overhead and administrative costs.

    To say nothing about the way they determine their figures:

    Low profits? Really?

    America’s Health Insurance Plans (AHIP) — the lobbying arm of the insurance industry — maintains that “for every dollar spent on health care in America, approximately 1 penny goes to health plans’ profits.” The group’s health care reform website offers the helpful visual of a subdivided dollar bill: “Fact Check: Setting the Record Straight on Health Plans’ Profits,” one blog post exclaims. Only one one-hundredth of the premium dollar is pocketed by the insurer, the rest is spent on providing medical care.

    But as NPR’s All Things Considered points out the group’s “fact check” is itself misleading, since insurers are measuring their profits against total health care spending, not company revenues. “All that statement says is, if you eliminated all our [insurance company] profits, national health spending in America would be 1 percent lower. It has meaning only in that context,” health care economist Uwe Reinhardt explains. Within the context of companies’ revenues, insurers skim off 15-20 percent of premium dollars for administrative costs and profits. In fact, an examination of insurers’ medical loss ratio — the fraction of revenue from a plan’s premiums that goes to pay for medical services– suggests that within the last 10 years, insurers have been spending less on medical care and more on administrative costs or profits
  7. KAM1138
    KAM1138's Avatar
    #527  
    Hello Everyone,

    Davidra here mentioned insurance companies misrepresenting things. I have no particular knowledge of that, but I can believe it is possible. What I do know however is that Government Regularly misrepresents the cost of their programs, and they almost always run way beyond what is predicted, and they are rarely if ever accountable for their lies and misrepresentations.

    Will the already massive costs escalate with this "reform" as well? It isn't a certainty, but I find it to be extremely likely. Government manipulation of the economy rarely turns out well (see the Housing Collapse) Insurance companies, and government--I put them in the same boat as culprits in bringing us to where we are today with a medical payment system (that hasn't been free market for decades) that is broken. That's why I advocate not allowing either of them to keep on hurting the taxpayer (and the economy as a whole, which contributes to making not only health care, but everything unsustainable), by handing either of them more power over our lives.

    I've talked about ideas I'd like to explore earlier in this and other threads, and I've concluded there isn't much to be gained here. After all--this entire issue is now in the hands of people whose careers are centered around gaining advantage for themselves and having others (the American taxpayer) foot the bill. That is who we are expecting to "save" us--these low-life, opportunists (most of them) who peddle influence and money, often to the detriment of the American People.

    The big difference between insurance and government...I can choose not to deal with an insurance company (there are at least some choices), but the government forces you to do what they want--literally at the point of a gun if you refuse hard enough.

    KAM
  8. KAM1138
    KAM1138's Avatar
    #528  
    Hello Everyone,

    Here's an article on the Public Option:

    In the health care debate, the "public plan" is all things to all people. For supporters, it would discipline greedy private insurers and make health coverage affordable. For detractors, it's a way station on the path to a single-payer insurance system of government-run health care. In reality, the public plan is mostly an exercise in political avoidance: It pretends to control costs and improve access to quality care when it doesn't.

    RealClearPolitics - The 'Public Plan' Delusion

    KAM
  9. #529  
    Quote Originally Posted by KAM1138 View Post
    Hello Everyone,

    Here's an article on the Public Option:

    In the health care debate, the "public plan" is all things to all people. For supporters, it would discipline greedy private insurers and make health coverage affordable. For detractors, it's a way station on the path to a single-payer insurance system of government-run health care. In reality, the public plan is mostly an exercise in political avoidance: It pretends to control costs and improve access to quality care when it doesn't.

    RealClearPolitics - The 'Public Plan' Delusion

    KAM
    At least part of that argument is counterintuitive:

    As for administrative expenses, any advantage for the public plan is exaggerated, say critics. Part of the gap between private insurers and Medicare is statistical illusion: Because Medicare recipients have higher average health expenses ($10,003 in 2007) than the under-65 population ($3,946), its administrative costs are a smaller share of total spending. The public plan, with younger members, wouldn't enjoy this advantage.

    The more health expenses are utilized, the higher the adminstrative costs should be.....right? If not, that would suggest efficiency. This argument in fact suggests that Medicare is very efficient in terms of administrative costs. Adding younger patients to Medicare would almost certainly not increase administrative costs, whereas adding lots of currently uninsured to private companies most certainly would.

    The argument is pointless regardless as far as I'm concerned. This is not cars and washing machines and gasoline, it's people's lives and wellbeing. Even if it costs more and raises our taxes, it's something this country should do. You know, like the rest of the modern world. I have no problem with a trigger approach, because I am confident that private insurers will not be able to control costs by their very nature, and that will invoke a public option at some point. No matter what you or I think, given increasing health care costs, there will be a "public option", and probably a single-payor one, within ten years. Our GDP cannot maintain the increasing burden of health care costs on private industry or individuals. There is no other way to control costs. It is coming, and there's nothing you or any politician from either side will be able to do about it. It will be much more money-saving to start now and get the system arranged instead of waiting for a disaster even worse than what we have now.
  10. KAM1138
    KAM1138's Avatar
    #530  
    Quote Originally Posted by davidra View Post
    At least part of that argument is counterintuitive:

    The more health expenses are utilized, the higher the adminstrative costs should be.....right? If not, that would suggest efficiency. This argument in fact suggests that Medicare is very efficient in terms of administrative costs. Adding younger patients to Medicare would almost certainly not increase administrative costs, whereas adding lots of currently uninsured to private companies most certainly would.
    Well, I thought the article was interesting and relevant, but I can't speak to the details of the author's thought process.

    Quote Originally Posted by davidra View Post
    The argument is pointless regardless as far as I'm concerned. This is not cars and washing machines and gasoline, it's people's lives and wellbeing. Even if it costs more and raises our taxes, it's something this country should do. You know, like the rest of the modern world.
    I know that's your stance, and I've come to believe that you are sincere about your intentions regarding it. I happen to disagree, because just because it has to do with people's lives doesn't make it a good plan, or economically viable.

    As far as the Rest of the world--poor example in my view. If I wanted what the rest of the world did, I'd move there. The United States didn't get to be the greatest (economic) power in the world, by copying the flawed systems of other nations. The rest of the modern world (excepting perhaps right now with our specific "Crisis) languishes under economic systems that relegate them to lesser (economic) status far behind the US--even today that holds true. I don't want to be like the rest of the world--I like the United States, and if someone prefers one of the dozens of other nations (even some that speak english) and their systems, then why not go there. There are no other options for me, except the US.

    Quote Originally Posted by davidra View Post
    I have no problem with a trigger approach, because I am confident that private insurers will not be able to control costs by their very nature, and that will invoke a public option at some point. No matter what you or I think, given increasing health care costs, there will be a "public option", and probably a single-payor one, within ten years. Our GDP cannot maintain the increasing burden of health care costs on private industry or individuals. There is no other way to control costs. It is coming, and there's nothing you or any politician from either side will be able to do about it. It will be much more money-saving to start now and get the system arranged instead of waiting for a disaster even worse than what we have now.
    I agree--Private Insurers cannot control costs, because their economic models are deeply flawed. The indirect payer scheme has failed miserably. However, a Public option is really the same thing--the difference--the government prints money and private companies don't, so they can pretend to be viable, when they aren't. I'm sure you know that Medicare has Trillions of dollars of unfunded liabilities--that is and will continue to cause major economic problems. Expanding that won't improve it, and government involvement in Healthcare hasn't kept costs down (they are the single largest payer already and costs continue to skyrocket).

    This is ground we've already argued, so not much sense in going over it again, but simply--you see the Government as a solution, and I see them as the problem. We both would like people to have better affordable options, but differ greatly on how to accomplish that. The Free market hasn't led to skyrocketing costs, because we don't have a Free market system for Healthcare. The cost-controlled, indirect payer system (which we largely do have) is what has failed, and I don't see that expanding it is likely to correct this.

    How about this--what say we take these 3+ years before these things are scheduled to kick in and do State or Regional experiments. Let's test and see what fails and what succeeds. Government mandated insurance (like in MA is not working well from what I've heard. The goal is what is important right, so why aren't we testing these things in the time they are delaying "reform" to figure it out the right way?

    I think your view is basically that providing healthcare is what matters, period. That's hard to argue with faced with someone that needs healthcare, but, again, there are unintended consequences. What happens when the entire nation becomes economically unstable because of an expansion of a failing concept? What good does that do anyone? Government can't keep printing money without consequences.

    I've got a question for you in regards to Medicare--which I recall is your preferred model. As I understand it--it is headed towards insolvency (same as social security) and has trillions in unfunded liabilities moving forward. A relatively small number of people (the elderly) are supported by a larger group (those of us working and paying medicare tax). It still isn't viable. What happens when that payer pool remains the same size, but the beneficiary pool increases. How does that get MORE solvent?

    KAM
    Last edited by KAM1138; 10/26/2009 at 10:26 AM. Reason: typo
  11. #531  
    Quote Originally Posted by KAM1138 View Post
    Well, I thought the article was interesting and relevant, but I can't speak to the details of the author's thought process.
    Seems pretty straightforward, and has been touched upon in another thread from what I recall. At issue is that Medicare's 'efficiency' is based on administrative costs compared to how much it pays out. If you are paying for relatively expensive populations in costs, your per person or per claim cost is going to look lower than another population that has relatively lower costs. Put another way, if it costs you $X to process a $1,000,000 claim, this is going to seem significantly more efficient than if it costs you $X to process a $1,000 claim. The question then becomes how many more $1,000 claims will occur when/if the population increases, and what impact this will have on efficiency.
    ‎"Is that suck and salvage the Kevin Costner method?" - Chris Matthews on Hardball, July 6, 2010. Wonder if he's talking about his oil device or his movie career...
  12. #532  
    Quote Originally Posted by KAM1138 View Post
    I've got a question for you in regards to Medicare--which I recall is your preferred model. As I understand it--it is headed towards insolvency (same as social security) and has trillions in unfunded liabilities moving forward. A relatively small number of people (the elderly) are supported by a larger group (those of us working and paying medicare tax). It still isn't viable. What happens when that payer pool remains the same size, but the beneficiary pool increases. How does that get MORE solvent?

    KAM
    First, trying models is fine. But all you have to do is look at Massachusetts and Medicare both to see the problems are that, even in those "public option" plans it has been challenging to control costs. Those costs include drugs (an important contributant that is easily correctable by negotiation, i.e. Medicare drug benefit), provider reimbursement (again negotiable), overhead, cost-effective practice, and fraud. Don't underestimate the money that could be saved by control of these things.

    But we're still getting back to the same issue, to some extent. We as a country have a relatively low tax rate, much lower than we used to have here. This is much more of a relative value problem than a political discussion. When auto manufacturers are spending $ 1500-2500 of their profit on each car on health insurance for employees, and Japan spends $50, our lack of a national health plan negatively influences business. How much of an increase in taxes are you willing to pay to provide not only the kind of ethos that a caring country should, but also to provide financial relief to many businesses? Those Canadians that have weighed in on this question keep saying they feel good about being able to say that nobody in their country has to go without health care. We appear to lack those values as a country. I think that is a sad comment about our country, but that's just me. I don't see it as a political issue, or a budgetary issue, but rather as one of principles. Can we care for those who need it, even if it means raising our taxes? I hope so, regardless of how oppositional that philosophy is to talking points....I'm just willing to admit it. Read my lips: more new taxes. And well worth it.
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    #533  
    An interesting, if not frustrating read. Since we're on the subject:

    Medicare Fraud: A $60 Billion Crime - 60 Minutes - CBS News

    I'd say this certainly speaks to the "efficiency" issue.
  14. #534  
    Quote Originally Posted by Toby View Post
    The question then becomes how many more $1,000 claims will occur when/if the population increases, and what impact this will have on efficiency.
    Exactly. We don't know. And if so, given an increase in claims by adding millions of uninsured people, what additional infrastructure will be needed.? I maintain that since the primary infrastructure for Medicare already exists, adding many underinsured or uninsured people to private insurers will require another whole level of reimbursement issues to the system. And funding that new system, either through tax relief or payment to private insurers, will be less efficient than simply expanding a current structure that has been in effect since 1964.
  15. #535  
    Quote Originally Posted by groovy View Post
    An interesting, if not frustrating read. Since we're on the subject:

    Medicare Fraud: A $60 Billion Crime - 60 Minutes - CBS News

    I'd say this certainly speaks to the "efficiency" issue.
    In actuality, it speaks to the amount of money that can be saved and make Medicare much more solvent by relatively minimal checks and balances. Combine that with negotiating drug prices with drug companies and you'll save a whole lot of money.
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    #536  
    Quote Originally Posted by davidra View Post
    In actuality, it speaks to the amount of money that can be saved and make Medicare much more solvent by relatively minimal checks and balances. Combine that with negotiating drug prices with drug companies and you'll save a whole lot of money.
    Agreed. And, yet, it hasn't been done. Shouldn't we attempt to get the current system in order before expanding it? Seems like otherwise would be throwing good money after bad.
  17. KAM1138
    KAM1138's Avatar
    #537  
    Quote Originally Posted by davidra View Post
    First, trying models is fine. But all you have to do is look at Massachusetts and Medicare both to see the problems are that, even in those "public option" plans it has been challenging to control costs. Those costs include drugs (an important contributant that is easily correctable by negotiation, i.e. Medicare drug benefit), provider reimbursement (again negotiable), overhead, cost-effective practice, and fraud. Don't underestimate the money that could be saved by control of these things.
    I guess I'm not following you on where this cost control is going to come from, if it didn't work under "public option" trials in States like MA and with Medicare. My first reaction would be that this won't work, but it COULD work. However, I think that the best way to control cost is with a free and dynamic market. I think enforced price controls literally do control costs, but not in a natural and effective way, and hence tend to have unintended consequences. A free market means of controlling costs (meaning, a fair level will be found--equal to the service) doesn't have those same problems--at least not generally.

    This isn't really relevant to healthcare specifically, but ironically, Wage Controls in the Depression is one of the reasons that we were pushed into the Broken Insurance system we have today. It's an example of unintended consequences of a government manipulated economy. I don't trust it, because history teaches me not to.

    I think we agree that the costs have to come down--I prefer a free market solution (in at least two stages) and you prefer a price-control approach (just reviewing).

    Quote Originally Posted by davidra View Post
    But we're still getting back to the same issue, to some extent. We as a country have a relatively low tax rate, much lower than we used to have here. This is much more of a relative value problem than a political discussion. When auto manufacturers are spending $ 1500-2500 of their profit on each car on health insurance for employees, and Japan spends $50, our lack of a national health plan negatively influences business.
    Well, as you may recall--I don't want Employment and health care to be linked--that's a problem that reform should solve, which would remove this from the Businesses books entirely. The article posted earlier talked about how government stumbled into the system we have now, and I see no reason we should continue to marry ourselves to it.

    Quote Originally Posted by davidra View Post
    How much of an increase in taxes are you willing to pay to provide not only the kind of ethos that a caring country should, but also to provide financial relief to many businesses? Those Canadians that have weighed in on this question keep saying they feel good about being able to say that nobody in their country has to go without health care. We appear to lack those values as a country. I think that is a sad comment about our country, but that's just me. I don't see it as a political issue, or a budgetary issue, but rather as one of principles. Can we care for those who need it, even if it means raising our taxes? I hope so, regardless of how oppositional that philosophy is to talking points....I'm just willing to admit it. Read my lips: more new taxes. And well worth it.
    Well, I don't see Government involving itself as a positive or efficient solution--I find the opposite to be true in this case. Let me be blunt without any offense intended to our Canadian Friends--I don't want to be Canadian, I don't want Canadian style government or economy. If I did, I'd move to Canada (I found it very nice otherwise when I visited). Those Canadians (and the rest of the world) also have benefited from the US keeping them Safe for over 50 years, so its a bit easy to say "we have universal healthcare), and without getting into that--it isn't that simple.

    As far as helping people...well, that's a moral view that I share, but I don't see government as the best means to accomplish that--again unintended consequences. I don't trust them to be efficient and help people without creating dependency--for their own benefit.

    It isn't a lack of values--its disagreement on the solution. Saying "more taxes" might give you dollars to fund what you want, and it might help...that issue, but what else does it hurt? Raising taxes can pay for healthcare--sure, but then what happens to the economy in general? Is this sufficient to create a permanent drain and even a downward spiral? Sure it is possible. I think we are pushing the limits to how many government burdens an economy can handle. Taxation seldom if ever leads to overall economic prosperity, and reduction in taxation often does.

    I think we need to look at health care costs with a bit broader economic perspective and realize that a robust, unburdened economy will provide MORE money for the unfortunate, not less. We need to rebuild an upward spiraling system, not keep draining the lifeblood from the economy.

    If we've got a healthy growing economy, more people have jobs, and more people pay taxes and fewer need government assistance, and those who do have more funds available.

    Healthcare costs are breaking us and something needs to be done, but it needs to done in a way that is self-sustaining, and taxation isn't--its has the opposite effect long term.

    KAM
  18. KAM1138
    KAM1138's Avatar
    #538  
    Quote Originally Posted by groovy View Post
    Agreed. And, yet, it hasn't been done. Shouldn't we attempt to get the current system in order before expanding it? Seems like otherwise would be throwing good money after bad.
    I agree. Why not take these 3 years and PROVE what savings there are. Make them prove their plan before locking us into it.

    KAM
  19. #539  
    Quote Originally Posted by groovy View Post
    Agreed. And, yet, it hasn't been done. Shouldn't we attempt to get the current system in order before expanding it? Seems like otherwise would be throwing good money after bad.
    Because delaying tactics are the currency of the day for some. This is an opportunity to do something, to avoid the Washington gridlock that may return with the next congressional election. The time is now, or we will suffer for many years....especially those without insurance.
  20. #540  
    Quote Originally Posted by KAM1138 View Post
    I guess I'm not following you on where this cost control is going to come from, if it didn't work under "public option" trials in States like MA and with Medicare. My first reaction would be that this won't work, but it COULD work. However, I think that the best way to control cost is with a free and dynamic market. I think enforced price controls literally do control costs, but not in a natural and effective way, and hence tend to have unintended consequences. A free market means of controlling costs (meaning, a fair level will be found--equal to the service) doesn't have those same problems--at least not generally.

    This isn't really relevant to healthcare specifically, but ironically, Wage Controls in the Depression is one of the reasons that we were pushed into the Broken Insurance system we have today. It's an example of unintended consequences of a government manipulated economy. I don't trust it, because history teaches me not to.

    I think we agree that the costs have to come down--I prefer a free market solution (in at least two stages) and you prefer a price-control approach (just reviewing).



    Well, as you may recall--I don't want Employment and health care to be linked--that's a problem that reform should solve, which would remove this from the Businesses books entirely. The article posted earlier talked about how government stumbled into the system we have now, and I see no reason we should continue to marry ourselves to it.



    Well, I don't see Government involving itself as a positive or efficient solution--I find the opposite to be true in this case. Let me be blunt without any offense intended to our Canadian Friends--I don't want to be Canadian, I don't want Canadian style government or economy. If I did, I'd move to Canada (I found it very nice otherwise when I visited). Those Canadians (and the rest of the world) also have benefited from the US keeping them Safe for over 50 years, so its a bit easy to say "we have universal healthcare), and without getting into that--it isn't that simple.

    As far as helping people...well, that's a moral view that I share, but I don't see government as the best means to accomplish that--again unintended consequences. I don't trust them to be efficient and help people without creating dependency--for their own benefit.

    It isn't a lack of values--its disagreement on the solution. Saying "more taxes" might give you dollars to fund what you want, and it might help...that issue, but what else does it hurt? Raising taxes can pay for healthcare--sure, but then what happens to the economy in general? Is this sufficient to create a permanent drain and even a downward spiral? Sure it is possible. I think we are pushing the limits to how many government burdens an economy can handle. Taxation seldom if ever leads to overall economic prosperity, and reduction in taxation often does.

    I think we need to look at health care costs with a bit broader economic perspective and realize that a robust, unburdened economy will provide MORE money for the unfortunate, not less. We need to rebuild an upward spiraling system, not keep draining the lifeblood from the economy.

    If we've got a healthy growing economy, more people have jobs, and more people pay taxes and fewer need government assistance, and those who do have more funds available.

    Healthcare costs are breaking us and something needs to be done, but it needs to done in a way that is self-sustaining, and taxation isn't--its has the opposite effect long term.

    KAM
    Well, I think we do clearly have a different perspective. Summarizing, you are proposing trickle down economics, which has failed miserably. I say that because the best way to a robust economy is tax cuts, right? It just hasn't worked. And it won't work, because capitalism and profits trump corporate concerns about increasing the capacity of employees. There are so many examples of companies that, while making great profits, cut their workforce to dramatically increase their profitability. Regardless of what you think of Michael Moore, that has been his defining message since his first movie. What it boils down to is that you trust a for-profit company, beholding to shareholders, to determine the future (and quality) of your own medical care. I trust the government more. Mostly, I trust providers more than either, and there are strong arguments for direct pay plans. But we are too late in doing that. That will not have any effect at this point without direct price controls, or by making all providers employees, and that will never be acceptable to the AMA or any other professional organization. Given the disasterous economy we have currently, isn't it clear that if we don't control health care costs things will just get worse? Why would you think otherwise?

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