Dallas, my daughter graduated from college last year. Of course my insurance dropped her off right a way, she was already having problems with her pancreas. She could not find any health insurance, even willing to pay high cost for unbelievable deductibles and her employer could not offer her any either...
Thank God S Korea has universal health care, she already told me that she is not coming back here...
You have made an impassioned articulate comment here, and I hope I do half as well in my reply to it.
To characterize those who, like me, have their doubts as being shackled by fear implies that we lack the character to embrace truth at any cost. That is not true. I am often fearful, but I still face things, including the danger I see in this legislation.
My step-mother was an Ob/Gyn RN for over thirty years. I never heard her cackling with glee at the riches she was amassing from the evil system whose market segmentation tactics made it all possible. Maybe I had my stereo up too loud.
I'm with you on the hard work and saving to get those golf clubs (and I'm not even a golfer). I just happen to think we can all apply the same hard work and brainpower buying buying our own health insurance. It has worked for me.
As I've stated elsewhere, I support the notion of caring for persons struck with illness or injury before they are old enough to buy their own insurance.
That is a good point WOB. On this day we will begin to get liberty from the tranny of the insurance industry and be able to live our lives free from free of being sick and unable to pay for it. Very fitting for such an anniversary. Good job of pointing that out.
Since the beginning of time wars have been waged over one thing...religion. Now wars are fought not only to inflict certain religious beliefs on others but for money as well. Think about it....wars make money, peace doesn't.
This health care bill is a start.....something we've never had before because a conservative congress wouldn't allow it. Course the "haves" will continue to fight it because they're afraid it may take something out of their pockets.
You may not mind, nor would I, but there are others who are much more greedy than us. In fact you would probably find the ones who have the most would be the least likely to want to part with any of it...unless of course it buys them liquor and whores...
Of course I don't make $200,000 so I can't say for sure. It might change
The problem is, of course, that this isn't all of it. When the folks like you and me start getting more and more taken out of their paycheck, and cost of medical care doesn't abate, you might change your tune.
For instance, part of the so-called savings, implicit in the bill, comes from reduction/limiting of payment rates to doctors. The President has already stated that this wil be waived next year (and, of course, in the years afterwards when the support of the medical industry is needed at election time)
I also suspect that that ideas that the law of unintended consequences will take over; for instance, mandatory coverage for people with pre-existing conditions sounds like a fair and equitable deal, doesn't it? But since these people are at guaranteed greater risk than the population in general, everyone's premium is going to rise to adjust for taking on this additional risk. This is how insurance works. So be prepared. (I'm not saying this is a bad thing but this is what often happens when good intentions trump logic)
As I said, I am not against the principle of health care reform. Sadly, I think the bill does absolutely nothing to attack the root causes of the rapid increase in medical costs but merely shifts the burden (and increases the costs). You will forgive me but I am also highly skeptical of a bill that requires the total payoff of two complete states, not to mention a host of lesser payoffs, in order to get it passed (and that, barely)
"...But since these people are at guaranteed greater risk than the population in general, everyone's premium is going to rise to adjust for taking on this additional risk. This is how insurance works. So be prepared..."
Insurance is intended to spread risk, not subsidize a certainty. I don't mind driving down a freeway with people who might swerve into my lane: we all take that risk every day. However, I would not get on a freeway where I knew there was a guy going 100 MPH the wrong way in my lane.
Yet our lawmakers think nothing of forcing me into an insurance pool with people who are already sick. Their premiums are not going to cover their treatment, so guess who pays for it?
Before you say I'm heartless, how would you feel if United Appeal collected their donations at the point of a gun? The folks they help would still need the help, right? What's the difference whether you want to give or not? Those people need your money. I'm serious, they are truly needy. I know they are, because I volunteer to help many of them each year with time and money. If you don't make a donation, why shouldn't the rest of us force you to do so?
I hope I'm getting my point across: charity comes from within each one of us. We must each answer the call to help our fellow human beings in the way that is best for us. No government has the moral right to dictate the form that kindness should take.
If you object that some would not help others at all, I can only say you are right. Some people steal cars, but that does not give the government the right to put ankle bracelets on the rest of us.
The only people who can morally claim my money for their illness are those who contracted illnesses before they were old enough to buy insurance for themselves. Once you're an adult, you should have enough sense to put insurance at the top of your priorities.
Think about it: the stakes are extremely high. Who in their right mind would bet their life or something close to it (like a poverty-stricken existence) that they would not get sick or hurt until right before they died? Who?
The first thing I did when I got out of the service was buy insurance. I did not buy a car or a house or even a new refrigerator. I bought insurance, because it was the right thing to do for my family.
I have no problems with medical costs. My perscription co pay is normally $9 every three months. Why? Because I was lucky enough to have chosen the military for a career. When I made that choice I was young enough, and the health system had not yet become the money grubbing system that exists in this country today. I did not choose to serve my country for health care. Health care was something that you got when you needed it. And since all the hospitals in my area were owned by the local governments, they took in anybody in need. So, I chose the military because it was a steady job that was exciting and offered travel, education and many other benifits. Health care was way down on my list because I had never known anyone who needed it who could not afford it. Niave? sure. Now, I Know many. What happened? I'll let you answer that. But, I will say that if you have adiquate health care coverage, its because you are lucky, not smart. And I can not understand why people would rather gamble that they would never need medical care beyond what their insurance provides, than paying a little more taxes for coverage. Why should we be dependent on the insurance industry? Why not divert the money that goes into insurance into a government system that is not dependent on profit in order to provide medical care. This would free all of us up to get on with our lives, I know that government run systems are a pain in the ass to deal with, but I would rather battle with them than an insurance company that can say that they are sorry, but my illness is not covered or some other reason why all the money I have paid in doesn't cover my situation.
My personal feeling is that anyone who believes that capitalisim provides better health care should be drowned like an unwanted puppy. but, that is just my back woods, hick, uninformed opinion.
"...And I can not understand why people would rather gamble that they would never need medical care beyond what their insurance provides, than paying a little more taxes for coverage. ..."
Every insurance policy I have ever had included a "stop-loss" provision, that is, once I had paid a certain amount out of pocket, all the rest of my care was paid 100% by the insurance. It cost me a tad bit more, but it was obvious to me that it was well worth it. This is a very well-known and easily obtained feature of health insurance, especially if you buy it when you are young and healthy. If you don't buy it then, we are back to Personal Responsibility.
"...Why should we be dependent on the insurance industry? Why not divert the money that goes into insurance into a government system that is not dependent on profit in order to provide medical care. This would free all of us up to get on with our lives..."
We should depend on the insurance industry because it shields us from the risk of ruin as a result of illness, accident and other causes. If we all had to bear that risk individually, it would tie up almost all investment capital in the USA.
The government cannot operate health care at a loss forever. It is one thing to raise an army, fight fires and educate children with tax money. It is another to introduce the inefficiency of additional government paperwork and marginally-motivated public employees into a system that has provided some of the best care in the world to people for two hundred years.
In the economic sense, that is money spent on the public good. We all benefit from a free country, quenched fires and an educated population. Those things are to the citizenry in public life what dividends are to shareholders in private life. The same is not true for health care, except in the very medically limited sense of obvious health issues like contagious disease control, advanced research and the like.
The "pain in the ass" nature of a public system will include exclusions too, I guarantee it. It will be forced to do so if it is to survive. Allocation of resources and all that, you know.
Plus, don't forget that insurance companies invest money in companies that invent new things to meet new challenges every day. If the government takes over, that well of investment funds dries up. Where's the money going to come from to fuel more innovation?
Markets need capital. All countries - regardless of their form of government - need markets. Period.
In the economic sense, we as a country are not irreparably harmed by the inevitable death of any one particular person.
Please do not get me wrong: as a personal matter, the lives of my loved ones are precious to me. That is why I pay for my own insurance. I am not saying that humans are worthless.
I am saying that the economic result of goverment health care will be far more collective harm to everyone in the USA than we are ready to accept. The last thing we need in a recession is for even more capital funding to vanish overnight. Talk about slow death...
By the way, if you're going to take me out back and drown me, please do it while I still have my private life insurance. My children will be sorry to see me go, but a year on the beach will ease their pain.