Tag Archives: health insurance

PolitiFact | John Boehner says U.S. health care system is best in world

That headline was from a 2012 Politifact discussion.  It’s relevant because Boehner repeated the comment which gave rise to the 2012 Politifact discussion again this month, November 2013.  It is is indeed odd how even supposedly objective entities, like Politifact, reshape the statements of Republicans, abetting construction for them of a mantle of reasonableness.  Donning this cloak, this mantle of credibility,  the conservatives are then free to support the crypto-fascist’s schemes of the Koch brothers, the ALEC agenda if you will, in the face of weakened scrutiny.  What Boehner said was that  Obamacare will ruin “the best health care delivery system in the world.” In order to portray the joker, John Boehner, as being a respectable contributor to the health care conversation Politfact has to change the discussion from one about the best health care delivery system to one about the best health care system.  What muddies the discussion and allows Politifact to give Boehner a “Half True” on its “Truth-o-Meter” is the veil  Politifact conveniently supplies from the phrase “delivery system,” effectively taking it off the field.  Politifact gets into discussing the quality of care some people can obtain allowing in the following Boehner praise of the status quo

“ wealthy foreigners flock to the U.S. to receive care because of its cutting-edge facilities, and that the U.S. is among the leaders, if not No. 1, in medical research and pharmaceutical development.”

Give the joker a chance to defend his original assertion and he will make you laugh.  Of course wealthy foreigners can get quality care, even while Republican administrations in states in the union will not expand Medicaid so that poor Americans can get medical care.  We’re talking health care delivery here.  And delivery or access depends too heavily on income and the Affordable Care Act seeks to address that and of course that involves a reduction in insurance industry profits and the guy who handed out tobacco checks on the House floor, the crypto-fascist foot soldier, would have a problem with that. 

Remember the American wage earners don’t have checks to give Republicans to hand out on the house floor and big business rules America not anti-choice advocates.

 

 

And as for his reference to America’s cutting-edge facilities and  medical and pharmaceutical development, Boehner seems to be implying that those things were somehow things bequeath to America by a private sector without government assistance because you know how government gets in the way.  Far be it from the crypto-fascists to note “

As the world’s leading medical research institution, the
NIH funds more than 35,000 research grants each year to scientists across the country
making advances against heart disease, cancer, and many other diseases. NIH-funded
scientists have won 93 Nobel Prizes over the years, and researchers in the NIH’s own labs
have won 5 Nobel Prizes.” 

But Politfacat, when even people you note as having written for the Koch-founded Cato Institute tell you that “”The assertion that the U.S. is ‘the best’ across the board has little support”  you have to say that Boehner’s comment about the best delivery system” is false not politely and sympatheticly, half true.  Best health care delivery system my foot.  Boehner can only get away with statements like that because he knows that the people who vote for him are so drunk on the notion of American exceptionalism that they believe that Americans have the best of every thing, case closed.  Boehner, the joker, can count on his constituents not knowing that contrary to what Dr. Ben “Americans-use-too-much-healthcare” Carson spews like an overflowing, Koch-brother cesspool,

“the average Japanese visits a doctor about 14.5 times per year-three times as often as the U.S. average, and twice as often as any nation in Europe.  If you can’t get to the doctor, no problem: Nearly all general practitioners in Japan make house calls, either daily or weekly.”  – The Healing of America by T.R. Reid

How’s that for health care delivery? 

 

 

 

PolitiFact | John Boehner says U.S. health care system is best in world

Mr. President, Lucy always moves the football(but now the chains are off)

The thing President Obama seems to never learn is that Lucy, in the Charlie Brown comic script, always moves the football so that Charlie Brown misses his kick.  Translation:  The health insurance companies never intended to cooperate and they will never cooperate so you need to stop playing the conservatives game. Mr. President when you apologized for the cancellations that the health insurance companies sent out, your weren’t strong enough in stating the realities.  Mr. President I hate to be the one to tell you this but you’re at war. And you should state the case unequivocally:  There are people who don’t want to cover pre-existing conditions because it cuts into their profit margins, therefore they will raise your rates.  Stay on message: “I am not taking your policies away.”  Mr.  President you need to hone your message because people don’t get it unless you do.  Stay on message in an “Its-the-economy-stupid” kind of way.  You are in a campaign to change the conversation.  Tell the American people that you are fighting for them and that “the insurance companies are taking your insurance away.”  Tell the American people that we are going to close the doughnut hole, insurance companies will refund premium payments to customers (a total of $1.5 billion overhead savings and insurance rebates to Americans since its implementation in 2011),  that we will through the ACA, supply funding for scholarships and loan repayments for primary care doctors and nurses working in underserved areas and funding to support the construction of and expand services at community health centers and no amount of sabotage in the form of cancellation notices will change that.  Mr. President here is where the Conservatives keep winning they keep it simply and repeat.  Take a lesson from the cowboy theater and watch someone like Donald Rumsfeld because it appears that the American people are accepting even when the message is stupid, if you state it simply. Just watch:

The conservatives continually refer to the ACA as a train wreck, this is an attempt to saturate the the American psyche with falsehood because they know that repetition of the big lie works as FDR explained years ago

About your messaging problem, this is what you said back in 2009 according to Politifact:

“When I say if you have your plan and you like it, or you have a doctor and you like your doctor, that you don’t have to change plans, what I’m saying is the government is not going to make you change plans under health reform. … Let’s say that we take the advice of some folks who are out there and say, ‘Oh, this is not the time to do health care. We can’t afford it. It’s too complicated. Let’s take our time,’ et cetera. So let’s assume that nothing happened. I can guarantee you that there’s the possibility for a whole lot of Americans out there that they’re not going to end up having the same health care they have. Because what’s going to happen is, as costs keep on going up, employers are going to start making decisions: ‘We’ve got to raise premiums on our employees. In some cases, we can’t provide health insurance at all.’ And so there are going to be a whole set of changes out there. That’s exactly why health reform is so important.”

Mr. President you are dealing with an “is-Khole-going-to-leave-Lamar” America, I mean Mr. President, the guy we elected before you said things like this:

Too many good ob/gyn’s aren’t able to do what?

People who voted for him, Mr. Bush, are far more likely to cherry-pick your words and attempt to hold you to standards they don’t even now apply to him and never held him, Mr. Bush,  and his “we-will-be-greeted-as-liberators” crowd accountable for the contributions that the war that would “pay for itself” has added to and continues to add to the national debt.  You remember the “smoking-gun-mushroom-cloud” gang.  Don’t fixate on their agenda. And yes I do say that their concern with the national debt is bull hockey and the evidence is the absence of Tea Parties in the Bush years.

So Mr. President, with an audience which is so inattentive to the nuts and bolts of how things work and who are unlikely to see the sabotage at work, the only part of that paragraph that was really useful for moving the agenda of health care access forward was  “what I’m saying is the government is not going to make you change plans under health reform.”

Remember you are dealing with a public that devotes a huge amount of their mental capacity and emotional involvement to entertainment.  They don’t have time or enough capacity left to digest paragraphs.  Therefore repeat: “Those cancellations come from for-profit insurance companies and they cancel policies for-profit every year.”

The health care industry cancels plans every year.  The government is not going to make you change your plan.  The insurance industry chose to gouge you for profit sake, thus the cancellations.  Lucy pulled the ball away.  Remember that the ball with which we are playing was Lucy’s ball from the start; we didn’t have a public option which means that the for-profit health insurance industry controlled how the game was played, who gets access related to coverage.  Just remember when you hear someone complaining about the President’s promise that we don’t know which of the cancellation notices would have been sent or which of the policies would have been altered even if congress hadn’t passed the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.  Mr. President some of your surrogates should be telling the public ever day, all day that that there was “normal turnover in the individual insurance market” before the the ACA and that  “40 to 67 percent” of customers would not have been able to keep their policies anyway.  The truth of the matter is, the insurance industry cancels plans to maintain and increase profit margins and would do so whether or not Obamacare existed.

Mr. President when it is reported that explanations for cancellations go like this

The main reason insurers offer is that the policies fall short of what the Affordable Care Act requires starting Jan. 1,

 

the health insurers may not be so much like Lucy as they are like the abusive white supremacists in Pulp Fiction.  The insurers are actually treating American citizens, only for profit, the way that Marcellus and Butch were being treated in Pulp Fiction, in essence like we’re at their, health insurance companies, mercy.

 

Mr. President you don’t have an election to win anymore and in the words of Marcellus its time to get “Medieval” on this mob.

 

Continually challenge the CONNINGservatives to pull the anti-trust exemption which can’t be good in any “free market” sense for the American consumer.  As a matter of fact, America doesn’t need for-profit insurance companies we need health care access for all. That is the challenge for progressives.  We need to get our views in the conversation as consistently as the Crypto-Fascists who are using every tool in the box to maintain the worst, most expensive healthcare delivery system (go find the Brits, Canadians, French, or Japanese who go bankrupt because of medical expenses) among the major industrialized nations.

Sebelius deflects criticism on ObamaCare-tied cancellation notices | Fox News

To the American people

“You deserve better. I apologize. I’m accountable to you for fixing these problems”

Those were the remorseful words from our President for not finding weapons of mass destruction in Iraq, right?

No, I don’t remember the President saying that. No, forgive me. Those were the words of Secretary of Health and Human Services, Kathleen Sebelius about computer glitches that have frustrated many Americans as they show their interest in affordable healthcare. What if, in this instance, in responding to the opponents of healthcare reform, the progressive part of the country did as Mitt Romney suggested in the title to his book and remembered No Apology is necessary when you’re doing the right thing. Conservatives held to this principle and didn’t apologize, even when what they did was the wrong thing like suggesting that Saddam and Bin Laden were somehow aligned and Saddam had WMD that he could give to terrorists. Not only didn’t the Bush administration apologize for misleading the country into an unnecessary war, none of the RepubliCons, who have attempted to block implementation of Obamacare at every turn and now are complaining that Americans don’t have access to the very thing to which they don’t want them to have access, none of these Crypto-fascists demanded any resignations related to the great, as Thomas Ricks described it, Fiasco, the Iraq War.

What, however, is ingenious is the RepubliCons’ ability to make a charge, as in the case of Shirley Sherrod, or a demand, like the individual mandate, and watch liberals, apparently acting out of some self-imagined superiority, go into overdrive to prove how compromising and pure, they are by forcing resignations or implementing proposals. Sometimes a little Bush-Cheney cowboy attitude may be good. It seems to be the only thing Teabaggers can recognize as American. Perhaps Liberals should meet them, the conservative, Teabagger fringe, half-way and speak a little of their lingo say to the RepubliCons: Sebelius ain’t going nowhere and we’re going to mend not end it, the Affordable Care Act.

And when you hear things like

“Some people like to drive a Ford, not a Ferrari,” Rep. Marsha Blackburn, R-Tenn., said. “You’re taking away their choice.” 

Perhaps you should respond: Yes, Rep. Marsha “Michelle-Bachman-southern-edition” Blackburn, some people may like to drive vehicles that are “Unsafe at any speed” but that doesn’t mean that the government should encourage their production or use by giving anti-trust protection to their manufacturers.

Tell those Cyrpto-Fascists who’ve done everything within their power to protect the insurance equivalent of slum lords that America, via the Affordable Care Act, is getting rid of all that condemned property, junk insurance; we’re moving our people away from pre-existing condition barriers and lifetime caps and doughnut holes. And we need to remove the health insurance anti-trust exemption.

In the process of calling for Secretary Sebelius’ resignation comes “It’s throwing good money after bad. It’s time for her to resign — someone else to take charge,” from Sen. Lamar Alexander, R-Tenn., top Republican on the Senate health panel. Funny, but I never heard him or the other Crypto-Fascists call for resignation after the American people were told that the Iraq war would pay for itself or that we would be greeted as liberators or the Iraq or Afghanistan wars weren’t included in the budget by these all-of-sudden-concerned-with-the-debt-no-bid-contract-giving Crypto-Fascists. Similarly there was no hue and cry when members of his party orchestrated a government shutdown that costs $24 billion in GDP. No, keeping Teabaggers in office is not, in Senator Alexander’s words, “throwing good money after bad.”

Yes, Secretary Sebelius, Americans do deserve better. So, please stay on the job. The Mississippi Yokohama employees deserve healthcare access as good as the Yokohama employees in Japan and the Affordable Care Act is a move in that direction with true out-in-the-open standards. Yes I said Japan, that country where southern governors go to get jobs for their citizens. Japan, where the average Japanese visits a doctor about 14.5 times per year-three times as often as the U.S. average, there is universal coverage, and they spend about 8% of GDP on healthcare, about half as much as the United States and they have a personal mandate with heavy government(Ministry of Health and Welfare) involvement in pricing.* Fortunately, we are taking steps to bend the costs curve because our government is no longer asleep at the wheel. Fortunately we are not yielding to those who did nothing when they had the chance, when they controlled both houses of congress and the presidency to reform healthcare in America. So, no, Dr. Ben “maybe-I-am-the-one-who-needs-brain-surgery” Carson, we are not going to some health savings account where someone can run out of money in the middle of treatment, you neo-feudalist-Heritage-Fund-Koch-Brother-flunky you who calls Obamacare which forces standards on insurance companies,slavery.

The crying over the cancellation of junk plans is reminiscent of domestic abuse cases. If a spouse is deserted by an abuser (like insurance companies changing substandard plans that could have been grandfathered and sending cancellation notices to customers) sometimes the spouse may not realize that that desertion probably just saved their life.

* “The Healing of America” by T.R. Reid.

Sebelius deflects criticism on ObamaCare-tied cancellation notices | Fox News

Bryant trusts no part of health care overhaul | The Clarion-Ledger | clarionledger.com

some low-level employees or volunteers with the exchange could unilaterally force the state to expand Medicaid, the longstanding federal-state health insurance program for the needy,

reads this article from the Clarion Ledger is Jackson, Mississippi.

This is being given as a reason for not supporting the Affordable Care Act in Mississippi:  “the navigators could unilaterally decide to sign people up for Medicaid, even if they earn too much money to qualify.” 

In the minds of some Mississippians the navigators, people who “are available to help people understand various levels of coverage available through an exchange” could sign people up for Medicaid, giving health care to someone who makes more than $5,500 per year, the income cutoff in Mississippi. You got that right.  In Mississippi some people believe that the navigators could expand Medicaid.  There seems to be a concerted effort by the neo-feudalists to constrict access to health care, in a state in which 1 in four adults lack health insurance including “one in three among adults 44 or younger.” In Mississippi “less than half the employers even offer insurance.”  The pretense that all is well and Mississippi should just not address the problem is indicative of the delusional southern mind that contributes to the state’s position nationally.  Talk about burying you head in the sand when it comes to health care. 

You see Mississippi is one of those places where officials rail against an agenda “controlled by Washington” when it comes to health care while lobbying to get more military institutions which are controlled by Washington.  Conservatives aren’t really against government.  They don’t really want smaller government.  They just want to be able to target the government expenditures toward the areas that they or their friends can derive the greatest benefit.  They have a preference for oligarchs and neo-feudalism where they channel the collective resources to themselves and their Heritage Fund protected masters and everyone can just go to them for “charity.”  

Bryant trusts no part of health care overhaul | The Clarion-Ledger | clarionledger.com

Oh, those ridiculous clowns in the Tea (hee-hee) Party

Got to give them credit, the Teabagger clowns have got people listening to them and are getting paid to boot. It’s these clowns and not their audience who’ve got to be laughing all the way to the bank. Senator Mike Lee, R. Utah, counts 13 Senators in the U.S. Senate of 50 Senators(most of the senators aren’t anyway close to being part of the tee-hee-hee Party fringe) who will help him defund the Affordable Care Act.

Listen to this nonsense that’s keeping him in the public eye and probably garnering him some pretty hefty insurance industry contributions as he chants the current Heritage Foundation, Republican Party line, like a soviet-era apparatchik.

 

 

Tea Party Clown at Work

Did you get that? “If Republicans in both houses simply refuse to vote for any continuing resolution that contains further funding for further enforcement of Obamacare, we can stop it. We can stop the individual mandate from going into effect.”

The clown says of the Affordable Care Act with its protections against lifetime caps on policies and the removal of the pre-existing condition barrier to obtaining insurance depends on, simply, Republicans in both houses refusing to vote to fund the government. Is this the new Heritage Foundation position to be repeated to the Teabagger faithful, adhering to Herr Goebbels’ principles, until the followers can think of nothing else. Now in the old days when Republicans were trying to derail healthcare reform, during the Clinton Admiministration, they threw the individual mandate out as a monkey wrench to wreck healthcare reform. Then it was championed by the conservative think tank and Republican politicians as a matter of personal responsibility. Now, to muddy the waters, they’re attacking it as an unconstitutional mandate and every conservative, even the rubes in Mississippi, is a constitutional scholar, even though the Supreme Court, with five conservatives on it, ruled that the Affordable Care Act was constitutional.

But back to the rich clown from Utah, Mike Lee, who’s parroting this notion that Obamacare should be defunded because, for one thing, big business is getting an exemption from the mandate but the little guy isn’t because he doesn’t have a lobbyist in Washington lobbying for him. This pseudo-love for the working class comes from the party which instead of tackling heath care reform chose, under Republican Administrations, to try to privatize social security and routinely suggested that we must “raise the retirement age.” The only way you can take these guys seriously is to not know history and to listen to only half of what they say. In the same interview when he complains about the individual mandate, originally a Republican idea, he complains about individuals not providing income documentation initially to receive “insurance” subsidies. So in the same interview you have Sen. Mike “Laughingstock” Lee complaining about people having to get insurance (the individual mandate) while acknowledging that people will be receiving government help in paying for the insurance they are required to have. His problem is that, regarding subsidies for individuals, “[f]or income verification, for the first year of operations” the government will be “providing Exchanges with temporarily expanded discretion to accept an attestation of projected annual household income without further verification.”  The only thing that’s missing is a complaint from ole Laughingstock about businesses being discriminated against, because they, in the words of Mitt Romney, “are people too, my friend,” and deserve health insurance subsidies.  Why not, after all, he’s promised to do all within his power to see that the Affordable Care Act is not implemented and for him this foolishness pays as much as being a U.S. Senator. 

Et tu, Federal Government?

Thus comes the cry from Mississippi’s Insurance Commissioner Mike Chaney. Claiming somehow that he expected approval for a plan he submitted to the Department of HHS without the Governor’s signature he ridiculously cries betrayal(A State’s Declaration Letter must be signed by the State’s Governor). Futhermore Mr. Chaney chose to ignore the fact that the Affordable Care Act “says that the exchanges have to be one-stop shops for both private insurance and Medicaid.”
How can Chaney get away with such blatant misinformation? He is basically running interference for big insurance companies while pretending to be for the average working Mississippian. He and other Mississippi RepubliCons talk of free-market approaches as a remedy for rising health care costs when they know full well that the health insurance industry has the McCarran–Ferguson Act and lack of regulation, which saddles Americans with billions of dollars a year in excess costs, in place to maintain the existing order and to harden the stratification and widen the wealth gap.

This is understandable in Mississippi, where some are not entitled to freedom from want of health care. Mississippians, owing to a basic fear of change and obeisance to crypto-fascist “leadership,” are destined to remain last in so many categories. When you consider farm subsidies and military installations and the boon to ship building provided by the federal government and, historically, earmarks, the Federal government to Mississippi is not betrayer, Mr. Chaney, but the love which dare not speak its name.