Thursday, August 6, 2009

Don't be idiots, America

Schwab on health-care reform: Don't be idiots, America. This is why you elected Barack Obama.

Don't let insurance companies, the special interests in health care, Republicans, who always defend the establishment because they always serve the monied interests of the nation, or whackos on the Internet (me excluded, of course) convince you that health-care reform is not in your best (self) interests.

I listened to Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, last night on public television. He sounded like one of the nuts. He said a public-option health insurance plan was just a first step in the government plot to take over the entire health-care system in America. The first step toward a single-payer system.

That conclusion is not logical.

It is the Republican Party's national spin for senators and representatives to take back to the heartland to try to talk the U.S. population out of insisting that Congress change health care for the betterment of most people in America.

How can starting a cheaper-than-current-costs, government-run health-insurance plan, to compete against more expensive private insurers, be a step into the hospitals and doctors offices that deliver health care now -- unless you think the private health-care insurers are already there, dictating what health care to give at prices high enough to make the insurers, doctors and hospitals a profit?

Grassley and others say we already have a health-care system that works just fine. How crazy is that?

Even if you think the movie "Sicko" was all wrong, anybody with any common sense, from doctors and nurses, to hospital administrators and even insurance executives, have known and have said publicly for years that our health-care system is on its own way toward bankruptcy if something isn't changed soon. And perhaps the nation with it.

Yet Republicans are now telling the country: It works just fine.

How crazy is that?

Don't be fooled.

If you attend public meetings of Colorado senators and representatives this month you'll no doubt hear the shouts of anti-reform activists who will describe any shouts you hear from pro-reform activists as the shouts of the looney fringe.

Right now, a guy named Jeff Crank, who is described in today's Denver Post as the head of the Colorado chapter of Americans for Prosperity (meaning the rich), is launching a 13-day bus tour around the state to repeat what he told the Post:

"We're headed right now to this thing being a fringe group of people demanding that there be some kind of 'public option' versus real America that is saying we're not going to throw out a health care system that delivers fine care but is expensive and maybe has to be refined."

Don't be fooled, real America. Those last nine words are Crank's attempt to sound not crazy. And in the earlier part of his quote, you see how he's trying to define other people who support reform as "a fringe group."

But who drives a bus around the state to harangue people about crazies in government besides a crazy, himself (although you wonder what's he's getting paid to make the pitch in this otherwise era of joblessness).

Don't be fooled, Colorado. Don't be fooled America. Health-care reform is one reason why a large majority of people in this country voted for the nation's first African-American president. We voted for change, and we could feel in our bones that Obama was the political athlete who could score for us.

Don't listen to shouts on either side of the argument.

Just quietly tell your congressmen and congresswomen to "stay the course," as George W. Bush's father used to say. But make sure they realize you mean the course toward reform.

Get health care reformed in this country by the end of the year, and let it start having its beneficial effect in 2010 and beyond, if we all live that long. Too many have passed without the benefit of the best care our country can offer its citizens.

You won't hear an anti-reformer shouting out about that outrage.

You can bet on that.

1 comment:

  1. Hey Bob...Just getting around to read your bias piece here which is loaded with mis-characterizations directed towards republicans. I have heard many on both sides of this debate insist reform is needed. I have also heard many on both sides of the political spectrum speak out aagainst a public option and/or a single payer system. Most having solid facts to back it up. All the CBO facts and much of the testimony and comments from health care pratictioners has been negative as well.

    The big players in the inurance industry would love a single pay system because it represents a bonanza for them.
    Fact about insurance companies...they hate taking risk even though it is a key element for their existance. The big players, Aetna, Blue Cross, United Health etc would benefit tremendously. Here is how. These are the companies who have the ability to administer a public heathcare plan. These activities would be outsourced like everything in DC to them eliminating competition from medium to small companies which by the way have the best prices currently on health insurance. Many of these companies administer medicare and medicade currently and would love to have the Advantage Plans banded. This is proposed currently. It would not take long for these main players to begin marketing supplemental coverage since the public plan will never cover many of the expenses you and I might incur or at the levels we get reimbursed for. This will also create a shortage of doctors and pratictioners driving up cost. Basic supply and demand. This will inhance the need for supplemental insurance to pay these additional costs. More unintended consequences. A enormous cottage industry will surface. By administering the government plan they would get paid a monthly fee per person to process claims and customer service. A profit has to be factored in which they will be glad to take without having to risk any capital or maintain reserve funds. Reserve funds are a great source of money for capital markets which will be removed from the general economy. One of those unintended consequences which seems to be always overlooked by the current administration eg: government takeovers of other private sector industries. I am still looking for all those jobs and mortgage money the stumulus and TARP bills were suppose to produce.

    Bottom there are better ways to reduce healthcare costs without spending taxpayers money. Lets do that first and see how big the problem is then. I am tired, worn out and "tapped out" from sending DC money with NO tangible reseults and being told it is Bushs fault or Nancy Pelosis fault etc. None of that makes me see it any differrently. The US Constitution never gave the fed the resposibility or the right to wastefully intrude in our lives. It is time for it to end. NO ONE in DC has a clue on what tax revenues will even be in the next 5 years to budget this takeover of 20+% of GDP. They are trending down dramatically and it makes NO sense to me to institute public policy of this magnitude when it is doomed to fail financially leaving us with something worse than what we have today.

    The progressive idealogues really have their heads in the sand on this one. This whole thing could be funded with royalties from oil, gas, shale and all the "pie in the sky" green energy sources. Imagine charging Warren Buffet royalties for wind turbines or GE for solar panels and $4 light bulbs? What a joke played on the taxpayers.