Democrats deliver lump of coal to Republicans on X-mas eve
The Republicans were delt a crushing political defeat on Christmas eve when the Senate passed it's health care reform bill.
It should take only a month or two for congress to combine the two bills together and send the final bill to Obama to be signed.
I'm actually shocked it got this far. I wonder what tricks the Republicans will try to keep this bill from being signed into law. Since only a majority vote is needed, the Republicans (and conservative Democrats) don't have a leg to stand on to get pork thrown in.
Yes, it's watered down though endless bickering and corruption of politicians that used their power to get extra favors for their states, but at least it's a start.
It will take a few decades for it to either be cleaned off the books or improved to the point where we can limit spending to a given percentage of our GDP. To me, this is what they should have done in the first place. Perhaps that just makes too much sense and forces us to think about our resource limits (oh no!).
Perhaps this will be the dawn of a new day in America where we finally start treating our citizens like the valuable resource they are, instead of the political threat they are perceived as.
We have only around 300,000,000 ultra super computers in the U.S. and it's nothing less than a crime that we fail to program and develop them to best or our ability in order to position our country high in the global marketplace.
Anyway, the whole process was a partisan circus that made most people give up any hope that the U.S. could solve any problem or work together on any issue. Perhaps our current structure has outlived it's usefulness in a global environment that will require intelligent planning instead of only reacting to catastrophe and terror (global economic meltdown and 9/11).
Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to the members of Congress. Yes, even the naughty ones.
Until a bill is signed into law, there is no legislative victory. Moreover, given Obama's precipitous drop in the polls, especially among independents, this "progress" isn't even a political victory.
The House and Senate bills are drastically different and many Dem House members are declining to run again or even switching parties before a final vote is taken. Reps have an 8 point lead over Dems in generic ballot polling. Given how different a final bill will look compared to what was narrowly passed and the unpopularity of the bill and the processes behind it, I don't see a single piece of legislation that will pass both houses.
On one side you have doctors recommending extra expensive testing to cover their legal asses and get more money from medicare.. on the other side you have the customer grasping at straws to stay alive and not really caring about cost since they are not paying for it.. then you have the insurance companies trying to make a measly profit, then you have the government penny pinching the doctors to keep costs down and the doctors retaliate. The lawyers are always circling too.
Its a mess.
the good part:
The current govt solution will result in new headaches for those that have coverage now and for doctors.. a lot of their options and choices will be reduced and obviously their costs will go up. Lots of new jobs opening up in government to manage these new programs.
The better part:
People with pre-existing conditions and those without insurance will have a chance to get some.. it will be subsidized by other insurees, the doctors and the govt.. obviously it will be HMO type insurance (and the nasty HMO type, not the good kind) but at least it will be something.. expect a lot more waste and bureaucratic papeworkr than ever before. The IRS may get involved in collecting mandatory premiums.
Are we getting medical malpractice lawsuit reform out of all this?
It will pass. There is almost no question about that, Jason. It will pass in only a month or so.
The Democrats know this is a once-in-a-lifetime chance to actually get medical reform passed. Who knows when they will have such power across the board again.
I love how humans just over complicate everything. Endless laws and endless lawsuits to cover every situation. It's ridiculous!
As universal health care emerges I hope it finally reaches the point where:
1) Every U.S. citizen has basic coverage where nobody is dieing in the streets and that they don't wait until a small problem becomes an emergency and then go to the emergency room. That costs us taxpayers about 10 times as much.
2) We use even 20 year old computer technology to digitize our medical data. It's a complete joke today and it could be completely fixed in less than a year (at least how it will be organized and the structure of the system). This would save us billions each year, not to mention save thousands of lives and endless hours of frustration.
3) We do away with ridiculous lawsuits. Other countries do not do this to their doctors. I think taking away their licence to practice medicine is the only action that should be taken. These crazy lawsuits don't make doctors try to keep from making mistakes because they all have extremely expensive malpractice insurance to cover the lawsuits. The only people that benefit are lawyers, insurance companies, criminals, and idiots that think a mistake is worth millions of dollars, especially when the doctors are doing the best they can. It's like suing NASA because a rocket blows up. A negligent doctor should just be prevented from practicing medicine and be sent to prison if it's intentional. End of story. Since we will have universal health care, those that suffer from mistakes (happens no matter what system because our medical technology is like NASA's - always on the edge) will be taken care of. This will save our country billions of dollars each year.
4) Take out the fear of people that want to change their job but are afraid to lose their health care. Having someone stay at a job due to fear costs the U.S. untold wealth. What would you rather have, 1) a person working at a job they like or 2) having the same person work at a job they don't like but cannot leave due to fear? How do you put a value on that? This will save us at least billions of dollars each year.
5) Tie our universal health care to our GDP. End of story. Right now our health care costs are around 16 percent of GDP and climbing out of control. It's more than any developed nation. Almost twice as much as France's ultimate universal health care costs. Do people not find this ridiculous? This should take an act of God to change. Sure there will be fluctuations but it needs to be averaged out. This will save us many billions of dollars each year.
6) Open and transparent operation that any U.S. citizen can go to the Internet to check things out. Stop the corruption, back room deals, pork, etc. This will save us billions of dollars each year.
7) Anyone that want's coverage above and beyond this primary care has the right to buy more, on their own dime. You want a triple bypass with a lung transplant? You pay. Even the richest people on earth did not have this technology only 30 years ago. The world moved along just fine. If you can afford it, then go for it. Limits should be taught to all children and adults. It's OK to accept our limits and do the best for our country. We don't have bottomless pockets. Deal with it. Each year, medical technology gets better and we will be able to afford to do more for the same cost. In 100 years (assuming no crash in the global economy) we should have unimaginable healthcare that even Bill Gates can't buy today, all within the budget. Why this does not make sense to people, I don't understand. OK, I do but it we need to learn to deal with reality.
8) Citizens and doctors should be provided incentive for improving the care and condition of themselves and their patients. If you are fat, smoke and do drugs then you get limits on the care you receive. Period. Yes, it's very harsh. These people will be given help but if they refuse to act on it, then they will need to foot their own bills. Something tells me this will be enough incentive. Actually, they will have no other choice but to put down the drugs, alcohol, fast food bucket, etc. Is this too harsh? Too bad, it is reality and we only have so many resources. This will save us billions of dollars each year. Untold billions in health care costs and productivity. It's all about personal responsibility. Let's reward that.
OK, end of medical rant. It's so frustrating because it's so simple and all other developed countries in the world have universal health care that is less expensive than our corrupted system (even though their systems are full of problems - no system will ever be perfect). It's so bad, it's criminal. Of course, it's all based on greed and hate but that's America today; dog eat dog but first torture and break dog.
Healthcare is NOT a right, because healthcare IS products and/or services that are created/performed by OTHERS. NO ONE has a right to someone else's products / services. If you want a product/service, then you must create/perform it yourself, or create/perform something that you can barter or sell to pay for the healthcare product/service.
Moreover, taxing someone to pay for a product/service that doesn't benefit that person violates their property rights. Taxation must benefit those who are taxed. All those who already have healthcare are going to be forced to pay for others' healthcare through higher fees or taxes. That violates the rights of those who already have insurance.
Healthcare costs are rising, NOT because medicine or procedures are more expensive, but because government programs are signing up to pay for more than they can handle. When the government foots the bill, patients / doctors gladly consume all that the government offers to pay. Lawsuits also raise costs through legal fees, insurance and unnecessary CYA procedures.
On a separate topic, I don't see how Dean and Kos can make credible threats against Dems in Wash when they claim to hung Dems out to dry in the last election. If Dems in Washington can't count on their support, then they should ignore them.
We will see if Dems continue to hold ranks and pass something. I have never known Dems to stand up to polls. Being loved is too essential to their psyche.
Yeah, I heard it all before. Neither is any of our other social programs. However, a civilization is judged on how it treats its poor. By that, we are doing very poorly.
Yes, all other developed countries are wrong, our Medicaid, Medicare, veterans care, Social Security, military system, education system, fire departments, police departments, etc. are all wrong and should be eliminated. Keep spewing the same garbage until you believe it.
Just because things were written hundreds or thousands of years ago do no make them infallible. That's why we humans have to continually evaluate our environment and make adjustments.
A pure market economy does not exist nor could it. Therefore, regulations, criminal courts, social programs, etc. are needed, unless you would like to be stepping over dying, begging people in the streets. No thank you, I've seen enough of that in the undeveloped world.
I'm optimistic, by looking at other developed countries, that we can and should do better. Of course, not everyone (including yourself) agrees. Fortunately, the current political majority does.
I won't try to debate you on this Jason because I know exactly where you stand. We just have to wait for the selfish and old thinking conservatives to die off from old age before the next generation can slowly but surely clean things up and modernize. It's a slow process but eventually Americans abolished slavery, allowed blacks in the military, allowed women to vote, will soon let homosexuals marry who they want, etc. Many things that looked impossible in the past but what we take for granted now.
Hate to tell people this but the world is not really that big. We all have to share it, be it the air, water, environmental responsibility, energy resources, etc. Just because it seems enormous and was considered unlimited in the past, doesn't make it so. In fact, reality shows us that we only have this planet and that's it.
Additionally, instilling fear, demoralizing, resource hording, withholding education, etc. may have worked in the past but I'm sure future generations are not going to put up with it. It's only a matter of time when people realize they don't have to. Like a child finding that he has almost limitless power, should he simply control his desire for any resources his parents have. How do you control someone who sees no advantage to anything you can offer? You can't.
Only a slave can force himself to work.
Only the abused can allow themselves to be mistreated.
Only the citizen can accept unfair allocation of his country's resources.
Education, military, police are all common benefits, so taxes for those are fair and just, but in the case of education, poorly administered and regulated. Competition in education, through school vouchers, is the best way to improve outcomes.
I support prenatal, neonatal and child healthcare, which benefits all, but I don't support healthcare for those old enough to work and pay for it themselves with the exception of those who serve in the military, national guard, coast guard, police, fire department or others who serve the public risking harm to themselves.
It is simply not viable to an economy to pay for care that extends our lives after we stop contributing to the economy.
It doesn't matter how old an idea is, and, frankly socialism (now called Progressivism) is also an old idea, but more importantly, shown to be a failed idea. Lockean individual liberties is old and proven most viable against all threats from socialism to fascism to racism to sexism an so on.