Why can't liberals get their around the concept of "insurance"?
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04-11-2013, 09:20 PM
RE: Why can't liberals get their around the concept of "insurance"?
(04-11-2013 07:55 PM)LostandInsecure Wrote:  I go the doctor about once a month. I have three very young children and my youngest may or may not be developing slowly (we will find out eventually). I have never been to Mexico, but I can assure you that I cannot afford to pack up my kids and pop over for a visit once a month. On top of that I'm not really sure I would feel safe alone in Mexico with three small kids. So that is just not an option.

I'm sorry you have some medical issues, and it's unfortunate that Mexico is not an option for you.

But what you have to remember is that since the rich are NOT paying more to cover the cost of Obamacare, that means the poor and middle class are still paying for their insurance. Obamacare may shift the burden around so there are SOME winners who pay less, but, since healthcare spending is going UP with Obamacare, that means overall the poor and middle class are paying more and the problem is getting worse.

Therefore, the only way to relieve the burden on folks like you is to look at WHY healthcare is so expensive in the US. Why is that in the US, where incomes are roughly the same as most other advanced countries, we pay much, much more for healthcare than those other countries, and the quality of our care is generally rated middle of the road? What can be done to reduce the burden—not just shift it around?

First, I would recommend we decriminalize the purchase of medications from across the border. See, the US has a medical patent system that gives drug companies monopolies so they can rape the American public. If Obama let everyone buy their meds from Canada, not only would this cut your costs in half, but then the US drug companies would be pressured to lower the prices. But Obama did the opposite—at the behest of the drug companies he agreed to step up enforcement and throw Americans in jail for the crime of going to Canada to get medicine they need.

Next, I would recommend tort reform. In many cases the cost of malpractice insurance for ONE doctor is over $200,000/year, and this drives up prices.

Also, I would like to put in place incentives to encourage the return of the charity system that used to provide free medical care to the poor, and which was funded by the rich.

See, a compassionate person, imo, would focus on fixing the REAL problem—the high cost—not sweep it under the rug like Obamacare that just shifts costs around without fixing anything.
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04-11-2013, 09:49 PM
RE: Why can't liberals get their around the concept of "insurance"?
(04-11-2013 09:20 PM)frankksj Wrote:  I'm sorry you have some medical issues, and it's unfortunate that Mexico is not an option for you.

But what you have to remember is that since the rich are NOT paying more to cover the cost of Obamacare, that means the poor and middle class are still paying for their insurance. Obamacare may shift the burden around so there are SOME winners who pay less, but, since healthcare spending is going UP with Obamacare, that means overall the poor and middle class are paying more and the problem is getting worse.

Therefore, the only way to relieve the burden on folks like you is to look at WHY healthcare is so expensive in the US. Why is that in the US, where incomes are roughly the same as most other advanced countries, we pay much, much more for healthcare than those other countries, and the quality of our care is generally rated middle of the road? What can be done to reduce the burden—not just shift it around?

First, I would recommend we decriminalize the purchase of medications from across the border. See, the US has a medical patent system that gives drug companies monopolies so they can rape the American public. If Obama let everyone buy their meds from Canada, not only would this cut your costs in half, but then the US drug companies would be pressured to lower the prices. But Obama did the opposite—at the behest of the drug companies he agreed to step up enforcement and throw Americans in jail for the crime of going to Canada to get medicine they need.

Next, I would recommend tort reform. In many cases the cost of malpractice insurance for ONE doctor is over $200,000/year, and this drives up prices.

Also, I would like to put in place incentives to encourage the return of the charity system that used to provide free medical care to the poor, and which was funded by the rich.

See, a compassionate person, imo, would focus on fixing the REAL problem—the high cost—not sweep it under the rug like Obamacare that just shifts costs around without fixing anything.

I agree with you. I don't hate the ACA as much as you do, but I get why you hate it.
I am all for taxing the rich and cutting defense spending to pay for the healthcare of those who cannot afford it.

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04-11-2013, 09:51 PM
RE: Why can't liberals get their around the concept of "insurance"?
I also think raising minimum wage would help more people be able to afford healthcare.

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04-11-2013, 10:09 PM
RE: Why can't liberals get their around the concept of "insurance"?
(04-11-2013 09:51 PM)LostandInsecure Wrote:  I also think raising minimum wage would help more people be able to afford healthcare.

Here's a video from a former left-winger Marxist who went to work for the Labor Department. While there, he discovered that internal studies proved that the minimum wage laws were making poor people WORSE off, but the agency buried the reports and refused to consider it because 1/3 of their budget came from the minimum wage: YouTube

It actually makes sense if you think about it. Consider the cashier at parking garages. More and more they're being replaced with automated machines. What if you raised the minimum wage to $30/hour? What would happen to the cashiers that still had a job? They'd all be replaced with machines and lose their job. Studies have shown that raising the minimum wage simply means that those jobs where the labor is valued below the minimum wage go away, replaced with machines like parking garages, or shipped off overseas.

A far more compassionate approach, imo, is to create an environment that encourages such economic growth that there are more jobs than workers, which means employers must pay more just to get their workers.

Switzerland demonstrated how this works. There is NO minimum wage in Switzerland. None. If you can get someone to work for $1/day, go for it. But look at how this worked in the real world. Today, in Switzerland the lowest paid job, such as a janitor at a McDonald's makes around $30-$40,000/year, gets medical insurance and 3-4 weeks paid vacation. It's because you have a <2% unemployment rate and so many more job openings than workers. And even though government makes no attempt to redistribute wealth, and even let's rich residents negotiate a fixed tax per year without disclosing their income, Switzerland is the only country where the poorest members make at least half the median income.

This is another example, imo, where the obvious, intuitive solution to the problem (namely pass laws that FORCE employers to pay more or else get arrested) backfires, and the peaceful, voluntary solution, while it requires more thought and planning, generates MUCH better results.
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05-11-2013, 03:51 AM
RE: Why can't liberals get their around the concept of "insurance"?
(04-11-2013 09:51 PM)LostandInsecure Wrote:  I also think raising minimum wage would help more people be able to afford healthcare.

frankksj brings up some fair points about the negative consequences of raising the minimum wage too high. Let's say that a typical employer incurs a cost of 10% or so of payroll in order to provide health insurance to an employee. That's a significant cost, but imagine a lower wage industry where health care would cost more like 25% or more of the wages paid out for the work. The ACA is forcing labor intensive, lower wage industries to bear that labor cost directly where previously, because these industries often did not offer much in line of health care, the cost of health care was an external cost.

The taxes in the ACA on companies act similar to a hike in minimum wage by imposing a per head cost on the workforce. These taxes hit lower wage industries much harder and will result in lower employment. You will find that modern technology can replace the work done by lower wage employees. Automated tellers aren't just for banks anymore. Self checkout aisles in grocery stores are a good example of the kind of technology that will become more prevalent as a result of the ACA.

In the state of Wisconsin where I live, we had Badgercare which subsidized healthcare for low income people that were not covered by Medicare. I said upthread that direct subsidy was a more transparent and honest way to make healthcare available to low income citizens. What we had in our state was just that, and it worked. There was no problem in our state that the ACA fixed. All the ACA will do is to increase unemployment and increase the cost of healthcare for everyone.
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05-11-2013, 04:29 AM
RE: Why can't liberals get their around the concept of "insurance"?
(05-11-2013 03:51 AM)BryanS Wrote:  
(04-11-2013 09:51 PM)LostandInsecure Wrote:  I also think raising minimum wage would help more people be able to afford healthcare.

frankksj brings up some fair points about the negative consequences of raising the minimum wage too high. Let's say that a typical employer incurs a cost of 10% or so of payroll in order to provide health insurance to an employee. That's a significant cost, but imagine a lower wage industry where health care would cost more like 25% or more of the wages paid out for the work. The ACA is forcing labor intensive, lower wage industries to bear that labor cost directly where previously, because these industries often did not offer much in line of health care, the cost of health care was an external cost.

The taxes in the ACA on companies act similar to a hike in minimum wage by imposing a per head cost on the workforce. These taxes hit lower wage industries much harder and will result in lower employment. You will find that modern technology can replace the work done by lower wage employees. Automated tellers aren't just for banks anymore. Self checkout aisles in grocery stores are a good example of the kind of technology that will become more prevalent as a result of the ACA.

In the state of Wisconsin where I live, we had Badgercare which subsidized healthcare for low income people that were not covered by Medicare. I said upthread that direct subsidy was a more transparent and honest way to make healthcare available to low income citizens. What we had in our state was just that, and it worked. There was no problem in our state that the ACA fixed. All the ACA will do is to increase unemployment and increase the cost of healthcare for everyone.

Usually people who make minimum wage do not get insurance through their employers. A McDonald's CEO makes between 8-14 million dollars a year while tax paying citizens pay for their employees healthcare and food for that matter. Raising minimum wage could cancel out our need for the ACA. Would you still hate a new bill if all it did was forbid insurance companies from denying people with pre existing conditions and require them to actually pay out on necessary healthcare?

Btw frank, your idea sounds nice for a perfect world where CEOs actually care about their employees, but that is not the world we live in. With no minimum wage we would have people working full time jobs with no place to live and no food to eat.

*correction we would have more people working full time jobs with no place to live and no food to eat. As the minimum wage is now we already have some people like that.
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05-11-2013, 05:45 AM
RE: Why can't liberals get their around the concept of "insurance"?
(05-11-2013 04:29 AM)LostandInsecure Wrote:  Usually people who make minimum wage do not get insurance through their employers. A McDonald's CEO makes between 8-14 million dollars a year while tax paying citizens pay for their employees healthcare and food for that matter. Raising minimum wage could cancel out our need for the ACA. Would you still hate a new bill if all it did was forbid insurance companies from denying people with pre existing conditions and require them to actually pay out on necessary healthcare?

Btw frank, your idea sounds nice for a perfect world where CEOs actually care about their employees, but that is not the world we live in. With no minimum wage we would have people working full time jobs with no place to live and no food to eat.

*correction we would have more people working full time jobs with no place to live and no food to eat. As the minimum wage is now we already have some people like that.

That's right--those who work minimum wage jobs usually don't get insurance from employers. Those costs through the ACA now add those costs back in for those employers. Before the ACA in my state, those low wage earners would get subsidized care through the State. Now, those low wage earners will see their hours cut and positions phased out due to the few thousand per head cost in taxes that go toward health care. Do you think it is a coincidence that despite the ACA not containing any authority to do so, Obama delayed implementing this tax part of the law until after the next election? Raising the minimum wage to cover the healthcare will have the same effect on those employees--fewer hours and less of them.

Before the ACA, laws already required coverage for preexisting conditions as long as you had coverage when you became ill, limited the length of time for exclusion of coverage for a preexisting condition, and forbid elimination riders that would remove coverage for specific preexisting conditions. HIPAA was the law that provided this protection for all group plans. Some states had similar protections for the individual market--I would agree with new law that provides the same protections for the individual market. And I agree with rules that limit insurance companies' ability to cap coverage.
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05-11-2013, 06:56 AM
RE: Why can't liberals get their around the concept of "insurance"?
(05-11-2013 05:45 AM)BryanS Wrote:  1:Before the ACA, laws already required coverage for preexisting conditions as long as you had coverage when you became ill

2:I would agree with new law that provides the same protections for the individual market. And I agree with rules that limit insurance companies' ability to cap coverage.

I won't argue the minimum wage thing further. I find people who are against raising the minimum wage to be just silly and/or uninformed (or rich lol).

1: What about people who didn't already have coverage before they got ill? We just let then suffer or even die?

2: That is a good start. How do you feel about universal healthcare?
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05-11-2013, 07:18 AM
RE: Why can't liberals get their around the concept of "insurance"?
(04-11-2013 10:09 PM)frankksj Wrote:  
(04-11-2013 09:51 PM)LostandInsecure Wrote:  I also think raising minimum wage would help more people be able to afford healthcare.

Here's a video from a former left-winger Marxist who went to work for the Labor Department. While there, he discovered that internal studies proved that the minimum wage laws were making poor people WORSE off, but the agency buried the reports and refused to consider it because 1/3 of their budget came from the minimum wage: YouTube

It actually makes sense if you think about it. Consider the cashier at parking garages. More and more they're being replaced with automated machines. What if you raised the minimum wage to $30/hour? What would happen to the cashiers that still had a job? They'd all be replaced with machines and lose their job. Studies have shown that raising the minimum wage simply means that those jobs where the labor is valued below the minimum wage go away, replaced with machines like parking garages, or shipped off overseas.

A far more compassionate approach, imo, is to create an environment that encourages such economic growth that there are more jobs than workers, which means employers must pay more just to get their workers.

Switzerland demonstrated how this works. There is NO minimum wage in Switzerland. None. If you can get someone to work for $1/day, go for it. But look at how this worked in the real world. Today, in Switzerland the lowest paid job, such as a janitor at a McDonald's makes around $30-$40,000/year, gets medical insurance and 3-4 weeks paid vacation. It's because you have a <2% unemployment rate and so many more job openings than workers. And even though government makes no attempt to redistribute wealth, and even let's rich residents negotiate a fixed tax per year without disclosing their income, Switzerland is the only country where the poorest members make at least half the median income.

This is another example, imo, where the obvious, intuitive solution to the problem (namely pass laws that FORCE employers to pay more or else get arrested) backfires, and the peaceful, voluntary solution, while it requires more thought and planning, generates MUCH better results.

In Switzerland, everyone is forced to have health care. Your example shows
that mandating health care insurance (or "maintenance plan", however you
want to call it), leads to higher wages for poor people.

Switzerland does not federal minimal wages, but industries have collective
bargaining agreements and minimum wages are part of negotiations.
Countries that truly have no minimum wage are Somalia, Kazachstan and North Korea, not countries I would like to live in.
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05-11-2013, 07:50 AM
RE: Why can't liberals get their around the concept of "insurance"?
(05-11-2013 06:56 AM)LostandInsecure Wrote:  
(05-11-2013 05:45 AM)BryanS Wrote:  1:Before the ACA, laws already required coverage for preexisting conditions as long as you had coverage when you became ill

2:I would agree with new law that provides the same protections for the individual market. And I agree with rules that limit insurance companies' ability to cap coverage.

I won't argue the minimum wage thing further. I find people who are against raising the minimum wage to be just silly and/or uninformed (or rich lol).

1: What about people who didn't already have coverage before they got ill? We just let then suffer or even die?

2: That is a good start. How do you feel about universal healthcare?

I'm no longer anywhere near minimum wage. But I paid for school working minimum wage, and not much more than that when I became a shift supervisor. I was glad I had the job so I could pay for school--which I paid for 100% by myself, largely with jobs that might not have been there if the minimum wage were so high that employers wouldn't want to hire inexperienced employees/late teenage workers. I'm not opposed to minimum wage laws, but just caution on using it to solve all problems associated with low income. It is not a panacea.

1: Before ACA (not any longer) it was possible to get cheap catastrophic insurance for ~$60/mo in my state for individuals, and less than $200/mo for families. Families with low or no income though would also get free comprehensive healthcare plans from Badgercare for their kids and subsidized or free healthcare for the parents. For those who allowed coverage to lapse, there were high risk pool programs which capped rates so that it was more affordable (again, subsidized more if low income) http://www.hirsp.org/pdfs/2013-hirsp-fed...1-1301.pdf

There was nothing wrong with the programs except perhaps the inconsistency across state lines. Most were partially funded from federal dollars, so there would have been a way to raise the level of support for low income health care subsidies to bring statesvwith lower levels of support up to a level that provided good support to those who needed it.

2: I'm opposed to universal healthcare like a single payer system. The current system was just fine except for a few things that could have been fixed. Tort reform of some kind would save tons--when a doctor has to pay over 100 thousand dollars for malpractice insurance, and when they perform unnecessary procedures just to avoid lawsuits, guess who gets to pay? (varies widely by state http://www.ehow.com/about_5514154_averag...rance.html ) Allow more competition by allowing people to purchase insurance policies across state lines. The high deductible HSA plans were great--100% of costs were covered over the deductible, premiums were low, contributions to your savings were tax deductable and usable for care in the manner you saw fit. If you fully funded you account to pay for the deductible that year, you could save that for the next year, so essentially you'd have no deductible risk after a year. However since the ACA requires comprehensive coverage, HSA plans are now no longer as attractive since you are essentially paying twice for insurance--both for the mandatory coverage and the high deducible.
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