Indiana’s four Republicans were among the 156 members of the United States House of Representatives who voted against the bipartisan children’s health insurance bill, thereby upholding George W. Bush’s veto. Thinking of all the garbage these guys have passed and the insane amounts of money these guys have wasted, and this is where they draw the line — health care for kids. It’s not overspending — look at how much money they’ve wasted in Iraq. It’s not government health care — look at the Republicans’ Medicare expansion. So, what principle is it these guys are supposedly upholding?
Buttholes. They don’t make it easy to dispel the “life begins at conception and ends at birth” stereotype, do they?
Ok, I take back my comment about Coach Sampson. I’m feeling your pain.
Dan Burton will fight tooth and nail when it affects him personally re: Lilly, vaccines, and autism, but refuses to change when it doesn’t. What a meany.
Why Chilren Health care veto was not overridden by Republicans…
l.Too many people might have had a better choice of being able to choose government aid at the expense of private insurance.
2.’Socialism’ isn’t in the best interest of the United States (no matter who it might help)
It’s a matter of ‘belief system’and is much more important than ‘just children’.
While I am not a Bush supporter—the concern is and should be on the details of the health care plan. “devil in the details” –a lot will be made of the failure to pass this legislation it is in reality a very poor piece of policy. A some point the complete socialization of our society is going to have to stop. And, legislation that favors one group and taxes another for it —is just plain bad policy making.
It is time to move toward a more neutral position as to conservative/liberal–more on economics (real not pseudo) and the free enterprise system (yes, capitalism). Whether at the local, state, or national level promises of policy makers must be closely questioned as to reality.
Here, I have my eye on two very different things: cost of programs and the impact of rising healthcare on the general market.
Taking the latter one first, companies, municipalities and others are very concerned about the rising cost of healthcare and the fact that they can no longer pay the cost and (with companies) make a profit. I think it was the city of Madison, WI, that recently said that in just a few years it would take the entirety of the city’s annual budget to pay the heathcare costs for its active and retired employees and their families, leaving nothing for, well, anything else. The Big Three auto makers, the barometer for benefits and compensation matters for us in the HR profession and consulting fields, has said it clearly: benefits are no longer sacred. The unions now know that they can choose to keep salaries or keep benefits, but they can no longer count on keeping both.
Companies are increasingly dumping either their medical/dental plans or their employees using stealthy PER arrangements so that these workers are no longer on their payrolls. And we haven’t begun to see the entirety of this trend. More of us in the middle class will be working great gigs with great titles on our business cards without health insurance.
Coupled with this is the fact that we’re getting fatter and sicker younger and younger. Medical professionals have said that our children will be the first generation that does not outlive us with adult-onset diabetes, heart disease and the precursors of stroke seen before they graduate high school. They are predicted to have the greatest need for healthcare services of any generation and will be life-long, high use medical consumers.
We’re on a run-away train of healthcare consideration. Oh, and we’re both the conductor and the engineer.
Now, I’m less worried about socialism than I am about people suffering needless illness or death–the personal costs and costs to American productivity. That being said, I’m also worried about how we’ll pay for this. Even if S-CHIP never sees the light of day, we still have the pesky matter of Medicare: people are living longer and because of poor healtcare choices (smoking, stress, poor diet, lack of exercise, too much booze…the same stuff the doctors have been chiding us about for the last 50 years), that group will need a massive infusin of money to fund the program that’s already there.
What’s the answer aside from individual responsibility and self control? I don’t know. I do know that, unless we rein this in, there will be more sad faces on commercials than little Jimmy’s. It will be ours.
In my opinion, insurance is an awful place to take a stand against “socialism.” Look at what insurance is in the first place — it’s the communalization of risk. You take a risk that can be predicted with accuracy for a group of people but can’t be predicted with any accuracy for a particular individual. The individuals in that pool pay money in that reflects their per capita portion of the risk. You know the risk is going afflict somebody, you just don’t know who. When the risk event occurs, you use money from the pool to pay for it. This is hardly a model of rugged individualism.
I see insurance as one of the areas most suitable for government intervention — it allows you to spread the risk as widely as possible (and with such a large pool, presumably to predict the actual risk with greater accuracy). It also eliminates the need to wring profit out of premium dollars. (Look at the percentage of premium dollars spent for Medicare overhead compared to the situation with most private insurers).
When government is involved, there is always a concern that you will lose market efficiencies. But, in the health insurance industry, I can’t see that there are many market efficiencies to be lost.
Will not totally agree or disagree with your statement, but some basic issues still remain as a concern: Should payer for something not be somewhat related to benefactor? This issue of children’s insurance is still about the details not the catchy phrase. As to socialization of medicine—concern has to be a part when review real world of Canada, England, etc. and the real workings of the system. Also, look at some of the systems around the world that are shifting from government sponsored/controlled to more emphasis on allowing the market based system coupled with government and charity to handle.
Having worked with youth all my life I am not insensitive to needs—but do observe more and more a philosphy among many that there is an entitlement to the funds of others and that the government “owes me” something. Personal responsibility for self and those dependent on me seems to be a dying thought.
Also, having been involved with government workings it bothers me when those in legislative positions are condemned without seeking to understand the reality behind the issue. Perhaps, too quick to say they don’t care—no wonder even at the local level it is hard to find good candidates for office. Had many a good business person say they could not afford to be on the town council or school board, etc. because of the business they would lose if they voted against some special interests.
So many questions and so few viable answers.
“I see insurance as one of the areas most suitable for government intervention â€” it allows you to spread the risk as widely as possible (and with such a large pool, presumably to predict the actual risk with greater accuracy).” The statement gave me pause thinking outside the realm of health insurance.
There are areas of economic activity where governments have become involved as a way of subsidizing an industry. The federal government years ago became heavily involved in insurance relating to commercial nuclear power. Governments have long assumed risks during times of war when insurance premiums on shipping threatened to close off trade as effectively as a blockade might. I’d have to dig through history, but I’d wonder off hand if the U.S. would have survived the War of 1812 in the British had acted to dampen rising premiums for shipping insurance. Commercial interests on both sides of the Atlantic had a strong interest in stopping that rather bizarre little war.
The fact that government can act to control insurance premiums and spread risk over a larger pool is a factor, but it isn’t the end of the debate in all cases.
1. For *most* people, the only way to make sure you don’t end up bankrupt because of an unexpected medical condition is to have insurance. (and that still isn’t a promise that it won’t happen, as I’m sure Doug can vouch for)
2. If we assume most people have insurance, then everyone is paying for eveyone else’s bad health choices, period.
So, if I have the choice between 100’s of insurace companies, each with their own procedures, or a single, government option, give me the government one.
Look at how much time (time=money) is spent on claims at a doctor’s office. Look at how much staff they have just do deal with it. Do you think you’re NOT paying for that, regardless what insurance company you have?
Socialized health care WILL suck. I think it will suck less than corporate-run healthcare, though.
I wonder if anyone has run the numbers on what federal revenues would be if we implemented a tax structure that was the same as it was in, say, the 50s. My understanding is that the very wealthy pay a lot lower percentage of their income now than they did then. It’s also my understanding that a huge chunk of the wealth in this country is concentrated in relatively few hands. Now, I know this will really provoke screams of socialism, but I wonder what the cost/benefit is to extracting that wealth. We can argue about the morality of extracting it later, I just want to know how much the country would lose and how much it would gain. (Less investment incentive, presumably, and greater ability to pay for stuff like health care, presumably — how much less and how much more?)
The current health care systems seems like the worst of both worlds — all of the bureaucracy of a government system (and then some) and the lack of universality and financial hardship of a private system.
In the 1950’s the United States could set tax policy without considering what was occurring in other countries. There were simply few attractive alternative places to live and wealth was less likely to be represented by liquid, portable assets and to be more physical and tied to place. If we attempted to bring back a 70% marginal bracket (with a 35% top on so called capital gains) I expect we’d see many of the wealthy (or high income, the two not being quite the same thing) leave for foreign tax havens. Alberta wouldn’t look too bad to many people, the nasty old prairie populist Social Credit Party no longer being in power. As it is I think Calgary is something like 10% or more ex-American as it is.
Doug as to questions on taxation policies and related matters two on-line commentaries—no comment being made on either just citing:
U.S. Treasury: fact sheets: taxes
From start of 3% up to 91% and down to current are major changes in both amount and policies on taxation.
Hmm, I can’t go with the “National Center for Policy Analysis” since it’s basically a right-wing think tank.
I get the feeling that, to this organization, the free market is a dogmatic ideology, not just a useful tool.
I don’t see where we don’t have socialized medicine now. When I see an uninsured patient in my office for a sore throat, I charge $59, he doesn’t pay, I’m out $59. I’ve subsidized his care. When he ends up in the ER because I will no longer see him at my expense, the hospital charges $1000, he doesn’t pay, and they pass the cost along to the next patient in higher fees. So the argument about “socialized” medicine is kind of a silly one.
The poor (or merely non-wealthy) will always be with us. Would you rather chip in your share (because it’s coming out of your pocket one way or another) and pay me $59 to see him, or would you rather chip in for a $1000 bill for the same problem? If “socialism” means not paying 1600% more than necessary, how soon can we get some of that?