by architek, Wed May 20, 2009 at 06:42:00 AM EDT
"Death Spiral" - Its a terrifying name. Its also the de-facto description of what the public option will undergo if it is "optional" because optional will mean not enough money will be devoted to it to avoid the "Death Spiral"
It starts with a nice, but misleading idea: "All other things being equal, public, nonprofit insurance can be cheaper than for-profit insurance"
Right? No - wrong. Because PUBLIC insurance HAS to be fairer and serve the public good and not the god of money.
The private insurance we all are hoping to replace is very profitable and expensive, because they deny care, right?
The catch is in that "if all other things are equal". The problem that eventually kills public option is that they wont, they can't be equal in profitability..
They will be extremely unequal. Any public option has to be fair to the sick. The for profit insurers don't. Not even Obama can EVER force a COMPANY to lose money. They have to make money so they avoid insuring many. That willingness to insure the sick makes the public option the insurance of last resort for many, inherently a money loser. It will drive up its losses or it will have to raise its premiums
(This is one of several links documenting these so-called "Death Spirals")
If the risk pool gets sicker. And the higher the premiums go, the fewer people, healthy or sick can afford it.
Their only public option will become Medicaid loans for the indigent. (Which people are eligible for ONLY AFTER THEY OWN OR MAKE VIRTUALLY NOTHING.)
by desmoinesdem, Fri May 15, 2009 at 05:01:37 AM EDT
Senator Chuck Grassley laid out his case against a "government-run" health care plan on the Senate floor yesterday. He used some of the same arguments he's been making in conference calls with reporters and in his guest editorial at Politico.
I don't know whether Grassley and the insurance lobby will be able to scare Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus away from supporting a public health insurance option.
However, after reading the highlights from recent opinion research that Richard Kirsch summarized at the Health Care for America Now blog, I am confident that the American public will not buy rehashed Republican talking points from 1993. For more on that, follow me after the jump.
by architek, Thu May 14, 2009 at 12:32:02 PM EDT
The list is very long and the "public option" PR campaign is clearly extremely well organized and well funded, but you can't put lipstick on a pig, and the healthcare industry-centric and unacceptably vague, probably unaffordable "public option" exposes Americans to far too much risk. In this economic climate, we should be following the path we KNOW can lead to a successful, healthy nation, joining the civilized nations in the 21st century.
1.) The primary vehicle for channeling health care to low income people, Medicaid, is a means tested loan program, it is not a grant or an insurance plan, per se. the huge bills incurred by the poor are supposed to be repaid.
That said, Medicaid has saved hundreds of thousands of lives of people who would not have been able to get health care any other way. For example, people with AIDS. Typically, it steps in after they have lost jobs and spent most of their pre-illness assets on medical care. (I think they are allowed to have some assets, the equivalent of around one months rent in urban areas)
The interest rate for repayment on Medicaid's loans is I think 9%. people often have to sign over assets like homes, inheritances, and lawsuit settlements to repay their medical debt to Medicaid. People are trying to imply that a non-single payer public option would somehow offer free money to the poor for insurance. Also, I think they are downplaying by a huge margin the probable expense of the insurance plan, given what such comprehensive plans cost nationally.
2.) I think it is extremely imprudent to NOT rush into a decision on healthcare without considering all of the options, and to date, discussion on single payer seems to have been suppressed, sometimes brutally. Any salesman who says "buy now or its gone" is trying to hide something. I strongly recommend that all of you watch the film Sicko, (I think you can find it online through Google) which shows how incredibly different the universal healthcare systems in a number of countries are from the propaganda, It will make Americans nostalgic for the simpler times of the past when healthcare was not this black cloud hovering over our nation. People in other countries still live like that, they still have fun. Life goes on for them.
by desmoinesdem, Fri May 08, 2009 at 04:33:57 AM EDT
As the ranking Republican on the Senate Finance Committee, Senator Chuck Grassley of Iowa will influence the shape of health care reform. For that reason, he and Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus of Montana were invited to lunch at the White House on Wednesday with President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden.
Grassley's message to the president and vice president, as well as to every journalist who'll listen, is that health care reform should be done through a bipartisan bill that can receive 70 or 80 votes in the Senate. (See also Grassley's recent guest editorial at Politico.)
Many Democrats want to include a health care bill in the budget reconciliation process, which would prevent a Republican filibuster. Grassley warns that it would be a mistake to reform such a large part of the U.S. economy without broad support from members of Congress in both parties.
After the jump I'll explain why Grassley is wrong, wrong, wrong about health care reform.
by architek, Thu May 07, 2009 at 05:41:29 PM EDT
As the subsidy that would have made a healthcare "public option" affordable for those who really need it vanishes in a puff of bull doo, there is a debate raging in the blogosphere about WHAT exactly DID Obama promise to get elected last November?
Wall Street Asked For Another 75 Billion Today
Since its such a subject of debate, what do YOU think WAS promised by Obama in those heady last days of the primaries, when he was struggling against HRCs lead in popular votes?
My friends think he promised results.
A quick, nonscientific poll of several (nonpolitical) friends indicated to me that those Americans believe that Mr. Obama did promise to work for an AFFORDABLE PUBLIC OPTION THAT INSURED EVEN THOSE WITH HEALTH ISSUES AFFORDABLY.
Not just "something".
What do you think was promised?
Please take the informal poll.
Remember, there will be Presidential elections in 2012 and 2016. "Perhaps" lucky Americans will
get lucky get universal healthcare THEN, heh heh.
(nudge nudge, wink wink)