Top Five Health Care Reform Lies" and other outrageous claims

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by freeny, Aug 12, 2009.

  1. freeny macrumors 68020

    freeny

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    #1
    source- http://pol.moveon.org/truth/lies.html?rc=fb

    Lie #1: President Obama wants to euthanize your grandma!!!

    The truth: These accusations—of "death panels" and forced euthanasia—are, of course, flatly untrue. As an article from the Associated Press puts it: "No 'death panel' in health care bill."1 What's the real deal? Reform legislation includes a provision, supported by the AARP, to offer senior citizens access to a professional medical counselor who will provide them with information on preparing a living will and other issues facing older Americans.2

    If you'd like to read the actual section of the legislation that spawned these outrageous claims (Section 1233 of H.R. 3200) for yourself, here it is. It's pretty boring stuff, which is why the accusations that it creates "death panels" is so absurd. But don't take our word for it, read it yourself.

    Lie #2: Democrats are going to outlaw private insurance and force you into a government plan!!!

    The truth: With reform, choices will increase, not decrease. Obama's reform plans will create a health insurance exchange, a one-stop shopping marketplace for affordable, high-quality insurance options.3 Included in the exchange is the public health insurance option—a nationwide plan with a broad network of providers—that will operate alongside private insurance companies, injecting competition into the market to drive quality up and costs down.4 If you're happy with your coverage and doctors, you can keep them.5 But the new public plan will expand choices to millions of businesses or individuals who choose to opt into it, including many who simply can't afford health care now.

    Lie #3: President Obama wants to implement Soviet-style rationing!!!

    The truth: Health care reform will expand access to high-quality health insurance, and give individuals, families, and businesses more choices for coverage. Right now, big corporations decide whether to give you coverage, what doctors you get to see, and whether a particular procedure or medicine is covered—that is rationed care. And a big part of reform is to stop that.

    Health care reform will do away with some of the most nefarious aspects of this rationing: discrimination for pre-existing conditions, insurers that cancel coverage when you get sick, gender discrimination, and lifetime and yearly limits on coverage.6 And outside of that, as noted above, reform will increase insurance options, not force anyone into a rationed situation.

    Lie #4: Obama is secretly plotting to cut senior citizens' Medicare benefits!!!

    The truth: Health care reform plans will not reduce Medicare benefits.7 Reform includes savings from Medicare that are unrelated to patient care—in fact, the savings comes from cutting billions of dollars in overpayments to insurance companies and eliminating waste, fraud, and abuse.8

    Lie #5: Obama's health care plan will bankrupt America!!!

    The truth: We need health care reform now in order to prevent bankruptcy—to control spiraling costs that affect individuals, families, small businesses, and the American economy. Right now, we spend more than $2 trillion dollars a year on health care.9 The average family premium is projected to rise to over $22,000 in the next decade10—and each year, nearly a million people face bankruptcy because of medical expenses.11 Reform, with an affordable, high-quality public option that can spur competition, is necessary to bring down skyrocketing costs. Also, President Obama's reform plans would be fully paid for over 10 years and not add a penny to the deficit.12
     
  2. freeny thread starter macrumors 68020

    freeny

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    #2
    And more-
    Source- http://healthcareforamericanow.org/...e_of_private_or_public_health_insurance_plans


    There is a nasty and misleading right-wing chain email going around. Some of you may have gotten it forwarded to you by family and friends.


    The email pretends to go through the "itemized contents of the Health Care Reform Bill," pulling out outrageous claims like, "Page 29: Admission: your health care will be rationed!"


    The insurance industry is funding these emails through hired shills and, of course, these claims are universally false. So we want to arm you with the tools to fight back against these smears.


    Below, we've created an email you can copy and paste in response to anyone who forwards you these lies. Just reply to the smear email and make sure everyone knows the truth


    We can fight these smears, one lie at a time.


    Copy the email below this line and use it to respond to this smear or download a document with this email text.
    ------------------------------




    The contents of the email I am replying to are patently false. If the anonymous writer of this email had actually read the bill, he or she would know better.


    Here are the facts. Anyone can verify them by reading the bill at http://www.opencongress.org/bill/111-h3200/text


    Actual itemized contents of the Health Care Reform Bill:


    "Page 22: Mandates audits of all employers that self-insure!"


    TRUTH: This is not an "audit," it's a study. Moreover, the bill states (pp. 22-23) that the report will "include any recommendations the Commissioner deems appropriate to ensure that the law does not provide incentives for small and mid-size employers to self-insure or create adverse selection in the risk pools of large group insurers and self-insured employers." This is almost directly the opposite of the email's claim.


    "Page 29: Admission: your health care will be rationed!"


    TRUTH: Page 29 continues to define the "essential benefits package" and discusses limits on what Americans will have to spend on health care under this minimum standard. In no way does this section stipulate the rationing of care.


    "Page 30: A government committee will decide what treatments and benefits you get (and, unlike an insurer, there will be no appeals process)"


    TRUTH: Page 30 begins to describe the Health Benefits Advisory Committee which establishes certain minimum standards for health insurance plans. In no way does this committee deny treatments and benefits to Americans with health insurance.


    "Page 42: The 'Health Choices Commissioner' will decide health benefits for you. You will have no choice. None."


    TRUTH: Page 42 begins to describe the Health Choices Commissioner's duties. The idea that this person will decide what benefits Americans receive is patently false, given that most Americans will keep their current plans under reform, and Americans within the exchange will have the choice of purchasing many different kinds of health plans. Rather, the Commissioner will establish minimum standards to protect Americans.


    "Page 50: All non-US citizens, illegal or not, will be provided with free healthcare services."


    TRUTH: Pages 50-51 contain a provision stating that discrimination will not be allowed in the provision of health care services. Nowhere does the bill state that non-US citizens will be provided free health care services. The bill prohibits federal dollars from being used for undocumented immigrants.


    "Page 58: Every person will be issued a National ID Healthcard."


    TRUTH: Page 58, in the context of a discussion of administrative standards, mentions that "determination of an individual's financial responsibility at the point of service and, to the extent possible, prior to service, including whether the individual is eligible for a specific service with a specific physician at a specific facility...may include utilization of a machine-readable health plan beneficiary identification card." In no way does the bill state that such a card would be national, or that it would be issued to every person, or that it would, in fact, be used at all.


    "Page 59: The federal government will have direct, real-time access to all individual bank accounts for electronic funds transfer."


    TRUTH: Page 59 continues the discussion of administrative standards, and authorizes electronic transfers of money within the government. In no way does this provision grant the government access to individual bank accounts.


    "Page 65: Taxpayers will subsidize all union retiree and community organizer health plans (read: SEIU, UAW and ACORN)"


    TRUTH: Here's what page 65 says: "Not later than 90 days after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Secretary of Health and Human Services shall establish a temporary reinsurance program to provide reimbursement to assist participating employment-based plans with the cost of providing health benefits to retirees and to eligible spouses, surviving spouses and dependents of such retirees." No mention is made of unions or community organizations.


    "Page 72: All private healthcare plans must conform to government rules to participate in a Healthcare Exchange."


    TRUTH: That's true! Plans have to have a minimum standard of benefits, bat can offer other plans as well. But that's fair, isn't it? Private insurers can continue to operate outside the exchange if they wish - should the government establish no standards for the exchange? In that case, how could reform end insurance industry abuses and help to control costs?


    "Page 84: All private healthcare plans must participate in the Healthcare Exchange (i.e., total government control of private plans)"


    TRUTH: This section says is that if private health care plans want to operate in the Exchange, they must provide a basic benefit package.


    "Page 91: Government mandates linguistic infrastructure for services; translation: illegal aliens"


    TRUTH: Some American citizens are more comfortable speaking a language other than English, especially in a sensitive situation like a consultation with their doctor. This provision in no way opens the door for coverage of undocumented workers.


    "Page 95: The Government will pay ACORN and Americorps to sign up individuals for Government-run Health Care plan."


    TRUTH: Page 95 makes no mention of ACORN and Americorps; all it says is that the Commissioner can conduct outreach to vulnerable populations, making them aware of their options.


    "Page 102: Those eligible for Medicaid will be automatically enrolled: you have no choice in the matter."


    TRUTH: People who are eligible for Medicaid will not have to face the burdens of paperwork and other bureaucratic struggles. Far from depriving people of choice, this measure will ensure coverage.


    "Page 124: No company can sue the government for price-fixing. No 'judicial review' is permitted against the government monopoly. Put simply, private insurers will be crushed."


    TRUTH: This section describes rate-setting under the public health insurance plan option, which will compete with private insurers, who can set their own rates. Because of inherent advantages like their established administrative and provider frameworks, private insurance companies will not be "crushed" by government competition.


    "Page 127: The AMA sold doctors out: the government will set wages."


    TRUTH: The government will negotiate rates with providers under the public health insurance plan option. However, private insurers will continue to pay their own rates.


    "Page 145: An employer MUST auto-enroll employees into the government-run public plan. No alternatives."


    TRUTH: This is simply not true. Employers with more than 20 employees aren't even eligible to participate in the exchange, let alone the public plan, until several years after the exchange launches in 2013. Moreover, no employer will be forced to participate in the public plan.


    "Page 146: Employers MUST pay healthcare bills for part-time employees AND their families."


    TRUTH: Employers are required to pay some benefits for part-time employees on a basis proportional to what they pay for full-time employees. No language on this page or the next stipulates coverage for the families of part-time employees.


    "Page 149: Any employer with a payroll of $400K or more, who does not offer the public option, pays an 8% tax on payroll"


    TRUTH: The payroll penalty applies to employers with payroll over $500,000 who do not provide insurance to their employees. The percentage for employers with payroll from $500,000 - $750,000 is 6%. Employers do not have to offer the public option to avoid this penalty, they can offer private insurance if they wish.


    "Page 150: Any employer with a payroll of $250K-400K or more, who does not offer the public option, pays a 2 to 6% tax on payroll"


    TRUTH: This is false, see above.


    "Page 167: Any individual who doesn't' have acceptable healthcare (according to the government) will be taxed 2.5% of income."


    TRUTH: Pages 167-173 detail what "acceptable health care" means (basically, insurance coverage) and also allow for many different kinds of exceptions to this rule.


    "Page 170: Any NON-RESIDENT alien is exempt from individual taxes (Americans will pay for them)."


    TRUTH: Non-resident aliens do not have to pay the penalty for not having health insurance, nor will the receive federal assistance, because they are not required to purchase health insurance. They are not exempted from individual taxes generally.


    "Page 195: Officers and employees of Government Healthcare Bureaucracy will have access to ALL American financial and personal records."


    TRUTH: This is a gross overstatement. For the purposes of determining affordability credits for Americans who need financial assistance in purchasing health insurance, employees of the Health Choices Administration will have access to tax information that the federal government already keeps. As is clearly stated on page 196, "Return information... may be used by officers and employees of the Health Choices Administration or such State-based health insurance exchange, as the case may be, only for the purposes of, and to the extent necessary in, establishing and verifying the appropriate amount of any affordability credit described in subtitle C of title II of the America's Affordable Health Choices Act of 2009 and providing for the repayment of any such credit which was in excess of such appropriate amount.''


    "Page 203: "The tax imposed under this section shall not be treated as tax." Yes, it really says that."


    TRUTH: This quote is taken out of context, and is in fact referring to a calculation used in the bill. Full context of quote: "'(4) NOT TREATED AS TAX IMPOSED BY THIS CHAPTER FOR CERTAIN PURPOSES.-The tax imposed under this section shall not be treated as tax imposed by this chapter for purposes of determining the amount of any credit under this chapter or for purposes of section 55.''


    "Page 239: Bill will reduce physician services for Medicaid. Seniors and the poor most affected."


    TRUTH: This section has nothing whatsoever to do with reducing services. It makes much needed changes to the way in which physician reimbursement is recalculated every year. The bill will, in fact, create much more opportunity for seniors and the poor to receive necessary care.


    "Page 241: Doctors: no matter what specialty you have, you'll all be paid the same (thanks, AMA!)"


    TRUTH: Page 241 does not say this. Nowhere does it say this. It does say that physicians will be grouped into certain categories regardless of specialty. These categories merely determine if the physician is engaged in primarily therapeutic or preventative care.


    "Page 253: Government sets value of doctors' time, their professional judgment, etc."


    TRUTH: There is no good response to this assertion as it appears to have been made up completely. The section deals with 'misvalued codes' meaning that the government is potentially not paying an acceptable rate for a specific service. This will allow the government to, for example, pay more for services that require more payment, such as high-overhead procedures. The author of these criticisms separately attacks the bill for paying the same rate to all doctors, then attacks again for paying different rates.


    "Page 265: Government mandates and controls productivity for private healthcare industries."


    TRUTH: This section amends the Social Security Act to include productivity measures. There is no mandate or control of anything. This merely updates the way in which doctors and hospitals are paid through Medicare.


    "Page 268: Government regulates rental and purchase of power-driven wheelchairs."


    TRUTH: No, this changes the way Medicare pays for power drive wheelchairs (13 month payments vs. one lump sum). It is essentially rent-to-own for power wheelchairs, and is one of the ways that Medicare already pays for wheelchairs.


    "Page 272: Cancer patients: welcome to the wonderful world of rationing!"


    TRUTH: Overusage of the hot-button word "rationing" is a way to deflect attention away from the actual language of the bill and incite unjustified fear. This section only compares costs incurred by cancer hospitals to costs incurred by similar hospitals, and adjusts payments to reduce the possibility of fraud and abuse.


    "Page 280: Hospitals will be penalized for what the government deems preventable re-admissions."


    TRUTH: This is almost correct. The section is one of the first efforts at targeting excessive readmissions. Excessive readmissions are physically and emotionally damaging to patients, while simultaneously putting them, and the health care system, in far more financial risk than is necessary. The American Hospital Association recommended reduced payments for avoidable readmission in testimony to Congress.




    "Page 298: Doctors: if you treat a patient during an initial admission that results in a readmission, you will be penalized by the government."


    TRUTH: This is patently false. The section is about possible methods that the Secretary of Health and Human services might consider in order to address the growing problem of patient readmission. This section does not, in any way, create a penalty, nor does it even mandate policy. It merely provides examples of recourses that might be considered.


    "Page 317: Doctors: you are now prohibited from owning and investing in healthcare companies!"


    TRUTH: This provision only limits Doctor's investments in health care facilities that they refer patients to The effort to limit self-referral has been ongoing for many years as an effort to reduce fraud and abuse. This is, essentially, the medical community equivalent of insider trading. Limiting this incentive works to put the patient's health above all other considerations. Doctors remain free to engage in investment opportunities in areas that don't create a significant conflict of interest.


    "Page 318: Prohibition on hospital expansion. Hospitals cannot expand without government approval."


    TRUTH: This section regulates physicians' investment in hospitals to make sure that physicians are not unfairly benefiting from their power to refer patients to hospitals they have a stake in. The section does not prohibit hospital expansion.


    "Page 321: Hospital expansion hinges on 'community' input: in other words, yet another payoff for ACORN."


    TRUTH: In the ongoing effort to demonize community-based groups such as ACORN, every instance of the word "community" has become associated with that group's efforts. In reality, this provision allows for anyone to provide input. This includes homeowners, religious leaders, neighborhood groups, and others. There are no payoffs. There is no money exchanged in any way.


    "Page 335: Government mandates establishment of outcome-based measures: i.e., rationing."


    TRUTH: This provision is included in order to allow the government to base payments on practices that work. Nowhere does it say health care will be rationed. The attempt to isolate what works and what does not work in Medicare Advantage plans only benefits the health care system in general.


    "Page 341: Government has authority to disqualify Medicare Advantage Plans, HMOs, etc."


    TRUTH: The government can disqualify some Medicare Advantage Plans from receiving some additional payments, but only if those plans are not meeting necessary requirements.


    "Page 354: Government will restrict enrollment of SPECIAL NEEDS individuals."


    TRUTH: This section only deals with how to handle special needs individuals who need to enroll outside of the open enrollment period. Almost every type of plan operates with open enrollment periods. This section does not create more restrictions.


    "Page 379: More bureaucracy: Telehealth Advisory Committee (healthcare by phone)."


    TRUTH: This section merely expands existing Telehealth programs, which supplement but do not replace other health coverage, and provide a vital resource to Americans in rural and remote areas.


    "Page 425-430: More bureaucracy: Advance Care Planning Consult: Senior Citizens, assisted suicide, euthanasia?; Government will instruct and consult regarding living wills, durable powers of attorney, etc. Mandatory. Appears to lock in estate taxes ahead of time; Government provides approved list of end-of-life resources, guiding you in death; Government mandates program that orders end-of-life treatment; government dictates how your life ends; Advance Care Planning Consult will be used to dictate treatment as patient's health deteriorates. This can include an ORDER for end-of-life plans. An ORDER from the GOVERNMENT; Government will decide what level of treatments you may have at end-of-life."


    TRUTH: All of these hysterical claims have been debunked elsewhere. HR3200 provides for the reimbursement of a voluntary session of end-of-life counseling with your physician once every five years. This in no way means the government will make decisions for patients or encourage doctor-assisted suicide. Counseling simply makes patients and their families aware of their options.


    "Page 469: Community-based Home Medical Services: more payoffs for ACORN."


    TRUTH: ACORN is not a Community-Based Medical Home.


    "Page 472: Payments to Community-based organizations: more payoffs for ACORN."


    TRUTH: This is clearly still referring to community health groups, not ACORN.


    "Page 489: Government will cover marriage and family therapy. Government intervenes in your marriage."


    TRUTH: Covering marriage and family therapy, as many private insurance plans do, does not mean that the government "intervenes in your marriage." The types of individuals who are recognized as therapists are clearly defined on page 491; in brief, professionals only, not bureaucrats.


    "Page 494: Government will cover mental health services: defining, creating and rationing those services."


    TRUTH: This section expands government coverage for mental health services under various government programs, and ensures that all mental health services will be offered by qualified professionals.
     
  3. imac/cheese macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2007
    #3
    Thanks for that. A very interesting read. I really get tired of the lies and scare tactics used by so many of my fellow republicans.
     
  4. obeygiant macrumors 68040

    obeygiant

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    totally cool
    #4
    Question. If the government is offering healthcare for less than the private insurance companies are, won't the private agencies shrivel with the slow drip of clients opting for gov't run healthcare?
     
  5. Sdashiki macrumors 68040

    Sdashiki

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    #5
    No, they would get off their fat asses (from bulging wallets in the back pocket) and introduce competition:

    costs go down
    quality goes up

    how can anyone lose here?

    oh, wait, right...the insurance companies whove been ripping sick people off daily for decades! :cool:
     
  6. freeny thread starter macrumors 68020

    freeny

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    #6
    Not if they offer a better plan....
     
  7. yg17 macrumors G5

    yg17

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    #7
    To take an example from Obama's townhall yesterday, UPS and FedEx aren't struggling to survive even though there's a cheaper, public option, the USPS.
     
  8. niuniu macrumors 68020

    niuniu

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    A man of the people. The right sort of people.
    #9
    Have to love Americans, they're happy for their tax dollars to be spent murdering people in other countries but have a coronary if their taxes get spent saving the life of a family member.

    :rolleyes:
     
  9. sushi Moderator emeritus

    sushi

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    #10
    Yes, because the USPS leaves a lot to be desired.

    People are willing to pay for UPS and FedEx for the service they provide.

    Having said that, think about how that applies to health care and you can see why some folks are not to keen on the Government run system. :)
     
  10. NC MacGuy macrumors 603

    NC MacGuy

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    #11
    It's not so much offering a better plan, it's closing the insurance company loopholes for when you do get care. The convoluted billing system has obtuse coding and depending on that coding is what they'll pay.

    Recent example:
    Went for a routine old man colonoscopy. Insurance policy states 100% payable as preventative procedure. Called to be certain and Dr. was approved.

    Find polyp which is very common and removed while having procedure under anesthesia. Cost for removal was zero in addition to the original procedure.

    Only additional cost was lab work for biopsy. $178.

    Get bills for >$2k start showing up from everyone and their grandmother.

    Call insurance company and they inform me that my policy clearly states that any surgical procedure is applied to deductible/copay. I'm on the hook for the whole thing. WTF? I understand but in my opinion, they should have paid what they agreed to and I'd gladly pay any extra resulting from the surgical procedure on top of the preventative. That would be fair.

    If the reform doesn't rectify this type and other loopholes, you can get all the insurance you want but still wind up worse off considering the increase in taxes to pay for it.
     
  11. yg17 macrumors G5

    yg17

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    #12
    What's so bad about the USPS? It's cheap and reliable, I'm not sure where all of this USPS hate comes from. For every USPS horror story I hear, I can find a UPS or FedEx horror story that's just as bad.
     
  12. leekohler macrumors G5

    leekohler

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    #13
    Yep. They're about the same in my experience.
     
  13. MyDesktopBroke macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2007
    #14
    Only if the government is aggressive in their plan, and aim to put private companies out of business. Other than that, insurance companies have two choices

    1) Offer a better plan and stay in business. England, as it has been pointed out, has had the NHS for more than 50 years, and people from England have posted here with the fact that private insurance companies still exist.

    2) Collapse after the CEOs realize they'll have to start burning 50 dollar bills instead of 100s to light their cigars, promptly causing a mass harakiri.
     
  14. Shivetya macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2008
    #15
    Meaningless statements and based on either purposeful omission or twisting of words.

    the number one fact is : There is NO ONE HEALTH CARE BILL, as such moveon, simply a paid sham org, list is just as silly as any other "list". It does the same crap as that anti e-mail that circulated not long ago by giving page references without the complete text or connecting text.

    So, uh, lets pick which version the page references are from?

    Look at this way, if it could stand on its own merits real news organizations would step in but it cannot, as such paid political groups; most funded by Soros or SEIU (see the fake townhall yesterday with questions by plants only); are having to do it.


    Look, if Soros wants it it is because he can make money off of it. If Big Insurance wants it (and they signed on early - oh - thats right mere parrots can't remember more than yesterday) its because they can make money on it.

    I love the fact that the American people are telling Congress to stop. No sweeping bill can be intelligently crafted if it is ram rodded through because of the fear of the truth coming out.



    The House bill that was before the Energy & Commerce Committee is at http://bit.ly/nSL2A

    All of the amendments considered to that bill in the committee are at http://bit.ly/EKTfz

    The bill approved by the House Ways and Means Committee is at http://bit.ly/u62nh

    A staff review of the Ways and Means bill is at http://bit.ly/14Wkrv

    The bill reported by the House Education and Labor Committee is at http://bit.ly/3Vr7V

    Here is the link to the initial bill presented to the Senate Health Committee - http://bit.ly/FJYOD

    Here is part of the Democratic amendment added to that bill - http://bit.ly/WnyhL
     
  15. freeny thread starter macrumors 68020

    freeny

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    #16
    Well, people who can afford the "better more expensive plan" still have that option. Why do you have an issue in offering a more affordable option for those with less $$$? I am 100% sure the private insurance companies wont be any more expensive then they are now, and will most likely be cheaper due to healthy, capitalist competition ;) Why is that scary?
     
  16. Zombie Acorn macrumors 65816

    Zombie Acorn

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    #17
    They lose billions every year? What is so hard to see about that? Do you think the government is going to prop UPS up if they decide to pay their carriers (especially rural ones) overpriced wages for work that a monkey could do and then start red lining into deficit?

    As to the original post, the public option is not being developed as a competitive entity, its a money pit that will artificially try to lower premiums and we will pay for the landfall even if we have our own private insurance. On top of that if they do decide to mandate coverage of pre-existing conditions, you might as well close the doors right now. I also can't remember the last time I thought about eliminating waste that the first thing that popped into my head was: involve the government. Quite the opposite actually.

    On rationing health care, its a monetary decision already made by insurance companies because its the only way they are able to make profits. The government will have to do the same unless they want to absorb massive debts (they probably do), the problem is that its a different ball game when the government is dictating coverage opposed to private industry. Also with our out of control spending there will come a time when countries simply won't buy our debt anymore (this time is already pretty soon), at that point the government isn't going to get to choose what it does (unless it decides to straight print the money).
     
  17. kavika411 macrumors 6502a

    kavika411

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    #18
    The comparison of government/private healthcare to the USPS/UPS/FedEx relationship is interesting, and raises a (non-rhetorical) question that I have. The answer may be obvious, I just don't know what it is. I will try to frame it this way.

    We all know the USPS is suffering from expenses that exceed revenues, and is looking at ways to remedy this, such as closing branches or raising postage. (If you need a cite - http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2009/08/05/national/main5216012.shtml .)

    The same is generally true for private businesses; when expenses exceed revenues, they have to either cut expenses or raise prices. (I am saying this imperfectly in broad strokes to frame the larger question.)

    So, here is my question(s): what will be the watermark used by the government when setting the cost of the government option?

    Will there be an expenses-must-equal-revenues approach like the USPS, or will it simply be a number/cost that is picked independent of revenue? I ask because if it is the former, then the comparison made by Obama to the USPS makes sense, and if it is the latter, I am confused (but won't be the first time).

    Thanks to anyone who can clarify that.
     
  18. Ugg macrumors 68000

    Ugg

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    Penryn
    #19
    Actually, despite your attempts to slander the USPS, it's a good starting point in this discussion.

    The USPS is in every community and delivers on Saturdays without charging extra.

    The USPS never delivers my packages to the apartment complex across the street like both FedEx and UPS do.

    I can't get my passport renewed thru UPS.

    Fedex charges an arm and a leg for an overnight delivery.

    I could go on and on but the point is, USPS serves everyone, not simply mass shippers and those who are able to drive to suburban pick up points for their packages.
     
  19. AceWilfong macrumors regular

    AceWilfong

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    San Francisco
    #20
    Maybe the Private Sector could offer a health care "Apple", to counter the Government's "Windows".
     
  20. yg17 macrumors G5

    yg17

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    Location:
    St. Louis, MO
    #21
    The USPS actually doesn't receive a dime in tax dollars, they are run justl ike any other company, operating off their revenues and borrowing when they need to.
     
  21. Zombie Acorn macrumors 65816

    Zombie Acorn

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    Location:
    Toronto, Ontario
    #22
    They borrow money from the US treasury from my recollection with intent to pay it back. Its kind of hard to pay it back when you are running deficits every year.

    If they do go under the government will bail them out, not the same for UPS.

    Also before anyone gets on my ass for talking about the USPS I did substitute carry for a while to help one of the workers out. My impression after helping was: "How the **** do you make $50k a year (rural community) doing this?", seriously, flipping burgers would be a harder job.
     
  22. Tomorrow macrumors 604

    Tomorrow

    Joined:
    Mar 2, 2008
    Location:
    Always a day away
    #23
    That's a horrible and borderline asinine comparison.

    The USPS is not the same type of service as UPS and FedEx. Sure they do some of the same things, but their core strengths are not the same.

    I know you can send out your Christmas cards using FedEx, but nobody actually does it because that's not their core strength. You can send in your water bill using UPS but that's not their core strength, either.

    Exactly. The USPS isn't the same as FedEx and UPS - they're not intended to be the same.
     
  23. Zombie Acorn macrumors 65816

    Zombie Acorn

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2009
    Location:
    Toronto, Ontario
    #24
    Its not capitalist competition, there is a prerequisite that there is some sort of balanced ground for you to compete on (many times the government messes this up via subsidies anyways). Private companies can't compete with an entity that doesn't care about their bottom line because they know their funds will be replenished regardless. Similar is why bailing out private industry is dangerous because it sets a precedence of "too big to fail" and they will go back to risky business knowing that.

    If the government can establish a balanced insurance business that relies on client's funds i won't have a problem (although under their terms it will be impossible). That would be competition, not a tax payer funded money pit.
     
  24. Eraserhead macrumors G4

    Eraserhead

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2005
    Location:
    UK
    #25
    Funny that government healthcare is cheaper than the US system in every case its applied.
     

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