Monday, November 9, 2009

Senate Calls Pelosi-Care "Mortally Wounded" and "DOA"...Translation, “Well Tinker Around the Edges, YOU’LL Still Pay Through the Nose”...

According to today’s New York Post, “President Obama's victory dance yesterday for the House-passed health-care bill came as Senate foes -- mainly Republicans with one key Democrat moderate -- pronounced the measure mortally wounded, if not outright DOA.” (

Senator Lieberman (I-CN), whose vote Democrats need to overcome a GOP filibusters, told Fox News Sunday, that if a government plan is part of the deal, "as a matter of conscience, I will not allow this bill to come to a final vote."

Lieberman expressed concern over the mounting Deficit and about how new government spending the health-care legislation would only make that situation even more dire.

On this wave of excess spending, Senator Lieberman has said, "I don't want to do that to our children and grandchildren."

At nearly the same time, Sunday (11-8-2009) Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC), was on CBS's Face the Nation, where he declared that, "The House bill is dead on arrival in the Senate."

"It was bill written by liberals for liberals, and people like Joe Lieberman are not going to get anywhere near the House bill . . . It is a nonstarter in the Senate."

He said he firmly believes "the public option will destroy private health care."

The overhaul would lead to the biggest changes in the $2.5 trillion health-care system -- which accounts for one-sixth of the US economy -- since the 1965 creation of the Medicare government health-insurance program for the elderly.

While I appreciate this bit of political theater and the obligatory bravado from the “opposition,” I expect nothing less than a very flawed “compromise" that serves the interests of Insurance Companies and has the 85% of Americans already covered, along with small business owners saddled with additional, and in many cases crippling added costs...and THAT’S not even counting the HUGE tax wallop that’s virtually assured of coming along with this ridiculous boondoggle.

See full articel:

In the meantime, here's a start on what this monstrosity exactly entails;

Betsy McCaughey, the former Lt. Governor of New York state explained some of the passages in a Wall Street Journal article this past weekend (Saturday, November 7, 2009).

• Sec. 224 (p. 118) provides that 18 months after the bill becomes law, the Secretary of Health and Human Services will decide what a "qualified plan" covers and how much you'll be legally required to pay for it. That's like a banker telling you to sign the loan agreement now, then filling in the interest rate and repayment terms 18 months later.

Protestors wave signs in front of the Capitol on Thursday.

On Nov. 2, the Congressional Budget Office estimated what the plans will likely cost. An individual earning $44,000 before taxes who purchases his own insurance will have to pay a $5,300 premium and an estimated $2,000 in out-of-pocket expenses, for a total of $7,300 a year, which is 17% of his pre-tax income. A family earning $102,100 a year before taxes will have to pay a $15,000 premium plus an estimated $5,300 out-of-pocket, for a $20,300 total, or 20% of its pre-tax income. Individuals and families earning less than these amounts will be eligible for subsidies paid directly to their insurer.

• Sec. 59b (pp. 297-299) says that when you file your taxes, you must include proof that you are in a qualified plan. If not, you will be fined thousands of dollars. Illegal immigrants are exempt from this requirement.

• Sec. 412 (p. 272) says that employers must provide a "qualified plan" for their employees and pay 72.5% of the cost, and a smaller share of family coverage, or incur an 8% payroll tax. Small businesses, with payrolls from $500,000 to $750,000, are fined less.

In addition to reducing future Medicare funding by an estimated $500 billion, the bill fundamentally changes how Medicare pays doctors and hospitals, permitting the government to dictate treatment decisions.

• Sec. 1302 (pp. 672-692) moves Medicare from a fee-for-service payment system, in which patients choose which doctors to see and doctors are paid for each service they provide, toward what's called a "medical home."

• Sec. 1114 (pp. 391-393) replaces physicians with physician assistants in overseeing care for hospice patients.

• Secs. 1158-1160 (pp. 499-520) initiates programs to reduce payments for patient care to what it costs in the lowest cost regions of the country. This will reduce payments for care (and by implication the standard of care) for hospital patients in higher cost areas such as New York and Florida.

• Sec. 1161 (pp. 520-545) cuts payments to Medicare Advantage plans (used by 20% of seniors). Advantage plans have warned this will result in reductions in optional benefits such as vision and dental care.

• Sec. 1402 (p. 756) says that the results of comparative effectiveness research conducted by the government will be delivered to doctors electronically to guide their use of "medical items and services." (This means rationing by government fiat. The government will punish doctors who offer more expensive, better care)

While the bill will slash Medicare funding, it will also direct billions of dollars to numerous inner-city social work and diversity programs with vague standards of accountability.

• Sec. 399V (p. 1422) provides for grants to community "entities" with no required qualifications except having "documented community activity and experience with community healthcare workers" to "educate, guide, and provide experiential learning opportunities" aimed at drug abuse, poor nutrition, smoking and obesity. "Each community health worker program receiving funds under the grant will provide services in the cultural context most appropriate for the individual served by the program."

• Sec. 222 (p. 617) provides reimbursement for culturally and linguistically appropriate services. This program will train health-care workers to inform Medicare beneficiaries of their "right" to have an interpreter at all times and with no co-pays for language services.

Secs. 2521 and 2533 (pp. 1379 and 1437) establishes racial and ethnic preferences in awarding grants for training nurses and creating secondary-school health science programs. For example, grants for nursing schools should "give preference to programs that provide for improving the diversity of new nurse graduates to reflect changes in the demographics of the patient population." And secondary-school grants should go to schools "graduating students from disadvantaged backgrounds including racial and ethnic minorities." (Nice backdoor move to embrace even MORE racial quotas!)

See Betsy McCoughy's full WSJ article at:


Skunkfeathers said...

I do not trust Senator Graham; he is a squiffy RINO, who can be counted on to sell out if they throw him a bone (as they apparently did with cap 'n tax).

JMK said...

Nor do I....I fully expect a robust round of poppycocking and strutting puffery, followed by a craven compromise that will deliver the worst of everything, including the gutting of the existing public option (Medicare) and, of course, LESS care for HIGHER cost.

Wait til the dopes who "think" they're going to get "free healthcare," find that they're really going to be forced to BUY their own policies at higher prices, to offset the insurance company's costs for insuring all the oldsters, as well as those with those pre-existing conditions!

The young are going to take a REAL bath in all this and they don't even see it coming!

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