Monday, March 22, 2010

About last night ...

And no, in this case I am not talking about Episode 13: USMC and Forcible Entry. I'm talking about what I have avoided talking about here, the healthcare fiasco.

I have avoided the subject mostly because I can't blog about everything - and others are doing it better. For the sake of the regulars though, I will tell you where I plant my flag.

I have seen the European health care system
s up close. Notice "systems." That is the key. Each European country has its own system for providing care. Some are run much better than others - and all are accountable on a much more local level. There are a bit more than 5 million Danes. Their health care system is run by Danes - and you are always within an hour's drive of the guy who runs the whole thing.

Move up the scale, and you have 17 million Dutch. You are within 2 hours of the guy(s) house. The Dutch system is very different than the Danish - but even then in a nation like The Netherlands between the size of
Maryland and West Virginia and a population between Florida and New York, their "responsive system" is expensive, clunky - and does not have the capabilities of the US system to provide fast service in critical specialties. When your right knee is bone on bone - getting a replacement in 2 months compared to 2 years, if at all - is what you are paying for.

Move up the scale more - and you have 61 million Brits - 62 million French - and 82 million Germans. Each have a different system. Each are accountable to a quasi local group - and generally speaking the larger they get - the less responsive they are, and the fewer options you have. Governments work that way.

The USA has a population well north of 300 million with a population as diverse as North Dakota to Mississippi, Maine to New Mexico. That is the key to the comparison. You cannot compare a system that serves 5 million to one that served 305 million.

The founding fathers - even when they only had 13 to deal with, much less 50, knew that in large nations, centrally dictated governments tend to be at first clunky, at middle inefficient, and at the end oppressive. The beauty of our system
was that it allowed each state to experiment - figure out what worked best for them and their citizens. Other states could watch, and then benchmarking their sister states' efforts - improve those systems to meet the stated desires of their citizens. What worked best for Tennessee may or may not work well for Massachusetts. If Oregon's system turned out bad - they could adjust quickly and move on - if its citizens wanted to. The folks in South Carolina didn't care as long as they had a system that worked for their needs.

For those who feed off of power though - they don't like that system. You see, the closer you are to the citizens - as you are in Denmark, Tennessee, The Netherlands, or Massachusetts - the more accountable you are to the
unwashed masses, and the harder the path to exercising power.

That is where we are for now. There is hope though. The Founding Fathers saw this tendency in governments throughout history. As a result, they built in checks and balances to let the system self-regulate against the fallen nature of man. Being that the Executive and Legislative Branches have taken this path - there is one hope left to preserve the Constitution - the Judiciary.

The States are planning to bring this to the Supreme Court - as are some private organizations. My hope is with the States - as this is the real fight. All can argue the need or want for government mandated health coverage - but it is hard to find a place in our Constitution that allows the Federal Government to force it. Let the fight go forward there. It will be interesting to watch. With the Executive and Legislative Branches
already attacking the Judiciary at the SOTU - the pump is primed for our system of government to check itself in a nasty, noisy way - which is good.

If the States lose and we drift further into a post-Constitutional governement, then we can discuss tactical aspects that will manifest themselves in all sorts of nasty ways to mitigate the destruction of the world's best health care system. First of all,
a if not the cost driver the last few decades WRT health has been the excesses of the Trial Lawyers. That has not been addressed in this bill and will not be addressed as long as the Democrats have the power to stop it. Health care costs are high in Europe - and they would be as high as ours if they had the same Trial Lawyer Bar as we have here. Forget all the cost extimates on this - it is much higher.

With that cost shifting to the government - the American public will need to be reminded of something. You voted for a Leftisit government - so you are going to get it good and hard. Taxes are already primed to go up a lot over the next few years. That won't be enough though - there will have to be other ways to get money to, shocker, give all these new goodies to the Baby Boomers in their high health care cost years.

If all is lost - you can at least have some comfort in this. As was well documented in the UK and Canada- once health care is socialized, you can live for 2-4 decades off the fat of the previous system. Care does not fall off the cliff, it just slowly fades like the pastel paint of a beach cottage.
After 30-40 years - then it cracks and falls off to the point that even the elite, like Canadian Provincial Premeirs, have to go elsewhere to get their care.

Funny thing that - for the world's elite - those with the money - the USA had always been the place to go when you needed life saving care. For the best medical students - it was the place to practice once you became a Doctor. Well, as we bring our system down to the rest of the world's standard - remember you get what you pay for - then where will they and us go when we need care now - not after a 2-year wait or outright refusal?

Now, even middle class people from Canada and Europe
can come to the USA to get treatment if they have the money. Once our superior infrastructure and higher quality care are gone in a few decades - then it will only be the rich that will have that option. Costa Rica is a very nice place, thank you.

They rest of us? Suck it up - you will get the guv'ment you voted for. If you give up your freedom for the promise of "more affordable" health care - you will
neither get nor receive either.

Wait - let me do some more generational warfare for you. If history tells up that you can go 30-40 years feeding off the previous system with just slowly declining care before there are significant,
unrecoverable cracks that can't be ignored ... what happens in 30-40 years. Oh, that's right - most all the Baby Boomers will be dead.

Let's see. The Boomers are mostly past their prime earning years. The first cohort of Boomers are already retired. They will, by and large, miss the higher taxes. Nice - they will suck the younger generations dry even more - and then leave the nation with a worse health care system than the one they inherited. Of course.

Another note - there are national security issues. We will have four years of taxes before any of the new system takes root - the I would guess another five until we get a better picture of the exploding costs ... that leads us to when Salamander readers - you got it - the "Terrible '20s" and the shipbuilding budget train-wreck.

Opening the aperture though - I think
Mark Steyn put it best over at The Corner.

Well, it seems to be in the bag now. I try to be a sunny the-glass-is-one-sixteenth-full kinda guy, but it's hard to overestimate the magnitude of what the Democrats have accomplished. Whatever is in the bill is an intermediate stage: As the graph posted earlier shows, the governmentalization of health care will accelerate, private insurers will no longer be free to be "insurers" in any meaningful sense of that term (ie, evaluators of risk), and once that's clear we'll be on the fast track to Obama's desired destination of single payer as a fait accomplis.

If Barack Obama does nothing else in his term in office, this will make him one of the most consequential presidents in history. It's a huge transformative event in Americans' view of themselves and of the role of government. You can say, oh, well, the polls show most people opposed to it, but, if that mattered, the Dems wouldn't be doing what they're doing. Their bet is that it can't be undone, and that over time, as I've been saying for years now, governmentalized health care not only changes the relationship of the citizen to the state but the very character of the people. As I wrote in NR recently, there's plenty of evidence to support that from Britain, Canada, and elsewhere.

More prosaically, it's also unaffordable. That's why one of the first things that middle-rank powers abandon once they go down this road is a global military capability. If you take the view that the U.S. is an imperialist aggressor, congratulations: You can cease worrying. But, if you think that America has been the ultimate guarantor of the post-war global order, it's less cheery. Five years from now, just as in Canada and Europe two generations ago, we'll be getting used to announcements of defense cuts to prop up the unsustainable costs of big government at home. And, as the superpower retrenches, America's enemies will be quick to scent opportunity.

Longer wait times, fewer doctors, more bureaucracy, massive IRS expansion, explosive debt, the end of the Pax Americana, and global Armageddon. Must try to look on the bright side . . .

Even though you can expect a fighting retreat in DC - the Democrats have the power to make this happen at the Federal level. The battle moves to the States and the Courts. The Democrats own this monstrosity - so don't let them forget it. Thank your local Republican Representative - and the few Democrats - that voted "no," but you need to shift your efforts to your home state. Get in touch with your Governor, State Attorney General, and State Representative/Delegate/Senator and let them know how you feel and ask them what they plan to do.

Virginia seems to be leading -
Sic Semper Tyrannis.
UPDATE From a friend in Germany - a view of where you are going, IF, you get a system as good as the German one. Look at the cars - that should give you an idea.
As someone who has lived in Germany as a civilian on the economy for 20 years, let me tell you what you're in for.
  • My income is taxed at 52%.
  • I pay $8 / gallon for gasoline, most of which is tax.
  • 18% VAT on almost everything.
  • I pay $1000 / month for my private health insurance policy.
  • Whenever I call a new doctor for an appointment, the first question is, "do you have private or government health insurance?"
Of course, I always get an appointment, and I get very good care. Ah... but even with all that, pre-exisiting conditions are not covered. Enjoy!

170 comments:

AW1 Tim said...

 To my mind, an additional option, which i have started on putting together, is to call for the impeachment of your Congress Critters, and/or recall for violating their oath of office. Since there is no power granted to them to impose a health-care mandate upon every citizen, then those who voted for this are guily of conspiracy to violate their oath of office, as well as being in violation of their oath of office.

 It mat be sea-lawyering, but it is something that they will have to respond to, both th Congress Critters, and the various state legislatures and Attorney Generals.

   This sea-change in the nature of America must not be allowed to stabd. IMHO, it is more than brazen. It is an illegal power grab by the leftists, no different than attempts to seize total control of power by some 3rd-world tinpot dictator.

  L'Roi Obama and his Court of Sycophants must see the error of their ways, that the White House is NOT the Tuileries. King George the Turd didn't listen to us either, and look where it got him.

Barry said...

Well, CDR, if the Healthcare bill remains law in just about any for, it will have solved your issues with the "terrible '20s".  The bill will mark the decline of th4 United States as a glogal power and we won't be able to afford to replace ships or other systems that retire.  No country can afford a multi-trillion dollar entitlement without making cuts else where in the budget.  Ask the Brits.  They were able to afford significant power projection forces until they enabled significant "social programs" with the National healthcare system being foremost.  Now look at the RN - more flag officers than ships.

Anonymous said...

I doubt this legislation will have negative impact -- we'll see.  It will take a while before we see the ramifications.

I am sure the same charges (leftist, impending ruin, non-Constitutional acts, etc.) were leveled against the Roosevelt Administration for Social Security...perhaps against Lyndon Johnson for his social programs.

Not all turned out to good -- and of course the Social Security math model is turned on its head.

However, I think this is a good thing.  I doubt it will be turned over by the Courts, Supreme or otherwise...

I guess relying on "Activist Judges" who legislate from the bench depends on the day/issue you are concerned about.

What prob will happen as a fallout -- the Dems may lose some seats on Congress, perhaps in districts where things were really close-to-call last time.  I suspect they'll retain a thin majority, we'll see.

I wonder what the Tea Party folks will latch onto next...they need a cause...

OnceAMarine said...

The Tenth Amendment to the Constitution of the United States of America
"The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people."

MaryR said...

Sic Semper Tyrannis is right!

Kristen said...

It's profoundly depressing that we should have come to this here in America.  I agree with you that we need to fight it on the state level, but I disagree about the federal side of things.  I think that it can be undone from both directions.  I don't believe that the Democrats have a clue about what the future that they bought for themselves with that vote last night.  Their election prospects are going to be grim not just in 2010 but for the next several elections after that.  A tidal wave of conservative Republicans is heading for Washington.

It can be undone, and those of us who do not want to see America sink into socialism need to roll up our sleeves and get into the fight.

Andrewdb said...

Amen, brother. Preach it.

I suppose since a large part of my day job involves telling Docs how to follow the rules, I should be pleased with this, but I'm not.

We lived as expats in Germany during the 1970s. My sister's health issues, and the German health system, were one of the big reasons we returned to the US.

Andrewdb said...

Barry - I hope FOs vs. ships isn't the right metric. The US is already in trouble if it is.

XBradTC said...

Your grasp of history is poor. Social Security passed with bipartisan support. Most of Johnson's Great Society had some level of bi-partisan support.

The monstrosity passed last night was passed with bi-partisan opposition.

As to 'activist judges,' it is hardly activism when judges reign in the government. Activist judges are the ones who find new powers and authority for government, or mandate new obligations from the bench.

As for Tea Party members, Dems have done a fine job villifying them. And it is going to hurt them. Why? Because the vast majority of Tea Party folks are middle class, and surprisingly moderate. The Dems have worked for a year to alienate the middle. Given that it is the political middle, and the middle class that gave them electoral victories in 2006 and 2008, that's probably not the wisest course of action.

Spade said...

Speaking of Social Security, I just got a statement from those guys. They had a Q&A thing on it that mentioned the predicted demise of Social Security. SSA wrote that it wasn't true, but still I'd be lucky to get $700 out of every $1000 I put in but they felt that was still pretty good.

So if we're comparing SS to Health care, then I look forward to my future 1/4 cut in my healthcare.

Barry said...

Granted.  At least the USN still has considerable power projection capabilities.  The Brits have to strip equipment from home based units to equip Afgan bound units fairly regularly (helicopeters are still in short supply for UK forces in the 'Stan).  Regardless, soon we will reach a point where the purse will not allow a powerful military any longer.  Then who will be left on the Global stage?  Almost any country that replaces the US will be much less of a force for good and just a Force.

honu said...

I wonder how many people complaining about it are set in regards health care.  I got mine!

JimmyMac said...

I am curious why no mention in the article or comments about how the new law impacts TRICARE.  I have checked MOAA web site and nothing. 

Skippy-san said...

Did it ever occur to you guys that without the type of histrionics that Phib so wonderfully repeated in this post-there might have been a better bill? That if insurance companies had actually behaved as responsible corporate citizens, rather than greedy selfish pigs, we would not even be having this discussion now?  All Republicans did was cater to the worst elements of the party and worst fears of our citizenry-and got people to the point where both sides so mistrusted the other side that it got to the point where resonable discussion was not possible. Instead of reading the lunatic Steyn, you should be heading David Frum:There were leaders who knew better, who would have liked to deal. But they were trapped. Conservative talkers on Fox and talk radio had whipped the Republican voting base into such a frenzy that deal-making was rendered impossible. How do you negotiate with somebody who wants to murder your grandmother? Or – more exactly – with somebody whom your voters have been persuaded to believe wants to murder their grandmother? I’ve been on a soapbox for months now about the harm that our overheated talk is doing to us. Yes it mobilizes supporters – but by mobilizing them with hysterical accusations and pseudo-information, overheated talk has made it impossible for representatives to represent and elected leaders to lead. The real leaders are on TV and radio, and they have very different imperatives from people in government. Talk radio thrives on confrontation and recrimination. When Rush Limbaugh said that he wanted President Obama to fail, he was intelligently explaining his own interests. What he omitted to say – but what is equally true – is that he also wants Republicans to fail. If Republicans succeed – if they govern successfully in office and negotiate attractive compromises out of office – Rush’s listeners get less angry. And if they are less angry, they listen to the radio less, and hear fewer ads for Sleepnumber beds.

All the talk about states rights and all the other nonsense that were the Republican talking points ignored three fundamental realities: 1) Insurance companies could deny coverage for reasons other than non-payment, 2) there was inequality of access to quality insurance and care and 3) the system had to change or go broke anyway. That was Obama's main point-he campaigned on it and 53% of the country agreed with him.

I've lived overseas too-and I watched my S.O. go through the Japanese system. She had both private and Japanese National Health care. When her heartless American employer downsized her-Japanese national health care was her only option for health insurance. And it worked just fine. She never waited for a doctor was denied coverage for anything-and she had some health issues she had to deal with. It can work-I've seen it work.

Skippy-san said...

....never "denied coverage for anything"-typed too fast.

Pedro the Lion said...

XBradTC forgets that this bill may have passed with bi-partisan opposition, but it passed with A MAJORITY OF VOTES, albeit slim, still A MAJORITY. So for you to say this was "rammed through" is just f-ing garbage and I'm tired of it. You know what? The bill isn't good, and I don't like it. But I don't spread crappy partisan rumors and convince myself that the party line is fact. It's just a bunch of garbage. Read a f-ing book.

This bill, you're right, is not good. But it's not solcialism, nor is it a government takeover of healthcare. It's nothing close to Canada or the UK. CBO says it's not only budget-neutral, but budget friendly. My problem with it is that it's going to make my taxes go up -- again -- which has happened in these United States decade after decade. Tax rates go up, then they go down, then they go up, then they go down. Look at the tax rate graphs over at WSJ.com. If you're going to argue that the healthcare bill is unconstitutional, you may as well join the crazy-right Tea Party, who doesn't believe this nation should tax anything -- it's unconstitutional after all.

So hate the bill. That's fine. Just stop spreading lies about it. Start reading real news and educate yourself. Don't just listen to Hannity or Glen Beck or whomever and regurgiating their opinions as fact. It's embarrasing.

cdrsalamander said...

Skippy,
Ummmm .... could you please define and quote my "<span>histrionics?<span>"</span></span>

Also, do you know the margins for health insurers?  I do.

Do you know what entity denies more coverage in the USA?  I do, see Metric 12

C-dore 14 said...

There's a brief statement from SECDEF on the DOD and TRICARE sites saying that TRICARE "...meets the standards..." of the new health care legislation.  Earlier this year I remember MOAA putting out an e-mail indicating the language in both the House and Senate Bills prohibited any reduction in TRICARE or VA benefits.

OnceAMarine said...

" ..If you're going to argue that the healthcare bill is unconstitutional, you may as well join the crazy-right Tea Party, who doesn't believe this nation should tax anything -- it's unconstitutional after all."  
 
Pedro,
Instead of suggesting that XBradTC read a book - perhaps you should read the Constitution:

Article 1 Section 8.
The Congress shall have Power To lay and collect Taxes, Duties, Imposts and Excises, to pay the Debts and provide for the common Defence and general Welfare of the United States; but all Duties, Imposts and Excises shall be uniform throughout the United States;

No, we "crazy-right" types don't object to paying our taxes, we just object to our money being spent for purposes that the Constitution prohibits.  Further, I would suggest that you read a dictionary: 
so·cial·ism  (sō'shə-lĭz'əm)  <img></img> 
n.  
Any of various theories or systems of social organization in which the means of producing and distributing goods is owned collectively or by a centralized government that often plans and controls the economy.
The stage in Marxist-Leninist theory intermediate between capitalism and communism, in which collective ownership of the economy under the dictatorship of the proletariat has not yet been successfully achieved.
Pedro, perhaps you can explain how central government control of 15% of this Nation's economy does not constitute "socialism"?  Tarp, GM/Chrysler, Health Care(including the nationalization of all Student Loan programs which is imbedded within) - with Cap and Trade now on the agenda.....either you are blinded by ideology or are just plain naive not to see the path we are travelling.  Or perhaps you are one of those who doesn't believe in American Exceptionalism and will be happy when we as a Nation sink to the level of mediocrity our neighbors in Europe have settled for?

Spade said...

"That if insurance companies had actually behaved as responsible corporate citizens, rather than greedy selfish pigs, we would not even be having this discussion now?"

You could always do the usual capitalist thing. If you don't like how they run their business then don't buy their product...oh wait.

Skippy-san said...

When anyone quotes Steyn- they are scraping the bottom of the barrel. The NRO is hardly a source of anything but hysterical nonsense.  Furthermore-trying to link the decline of US influence overseas to HCR is just crazy. As I pointed out at my blog-the blame for any such decline is on wasting our time, money, and precious young men on a nation that will never be our ally, no matter how much we want it to. And the fact that the world is changing-and there is not a damn thing we can do about it. Rather than bemoan that fact-the USA should seize on it as the opportunity it is to fix up our own house and be in a better position to compete-with those competitors countries that do not share our

Second you are falling for the nonsense that this bill is unconstitutional-its not. You may disagree with the ideas that are in it-but the bill and the ideas behind it are things the Congress can and should be doing. If the Supreme Court upholds a challenge it will be for the same reason Roberts allowed the campaign financing decision to go through-a desire to interfere in politics, not a solid knowledge of the law.

When you say we are "drifting into a post-Constitutional" government-how can that be anything other than histrionics? This is not the end of the world, its passing a piece of legislation that was long overdue.

As for insurance companies-well I hope you never have to go through what my son had to go through with his insurance company, or have to stay in a job you hate because you need to keep your health insurance. They deserve the kick in the nuts they are getting-especially when the CEO of the number one company, which has such a "slim" profit margin,  is making a salry in 2009 of 40 million dollars.  That's on running a company that made literally billions in revenue last year.

And at the end of the day-the insurance companies win. They get more customers.

Skippy-san said...

That's kind of the point. Everyone uses health care at some point in their life.

cdrsalamander said...

Skippy,
I gave you links to facts and figures - you throw personal attacks and emotion.  That is sad.

Paul L. Quandt said...

Pedro:  It's a good thing the you don't have two brain cells.  The friction of them rubbing together would set your head on fire.  ESAD.

AW1 Tim said...

  Umm.... the lies about the Health Care Bill seem to be all coming from one side: the Left.

  You would do your side a favour if you worked on your grammer, though, on second thought, it's better for our side if you don't.  That little diatribe of yours simply reinforces the opinions about the left that most American Citizens have: Ingrates and layabouts, slurping at the public trough and complaining about the quality of service.

AW1 Tim said...

 It doesn't need to address the issues of Tri-Care or VA Medical Benefits. This is simply the first step in an attempt to impose socialized medicine upon this nation. Once that is in place, there will be no need for Tri-Care or the VA system. They will be disestablished, with a celebratory note about the "savings" by shifting veterans onto the National health Care System.

  Word.

ActusRhesus said...

so now you know more about law than a Supreme Court Justice? 5 of them in fact?

Funny.  I got an A in constitutional law, and I see multiple avenues of constitutional attack to this bill.

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Mary Alpha said...

Guest - Thanks to Lyndon Johnson's Welfare programs we now have a permanent welfare class. To me, it has always been the height of racism. "We will pay THOSE PEOPLE" JUST enough to survive, feed them JUST enough to keep from starving and house them in "sections" or ghettos to insure that they do not taint us or ours. Oh, and also we will ensure that there will be NO strong males to protect, teach and uplift the young. We will, in effect, keep the plantation system alive only we won't even teach simple agriculture. Heaven help us if they should learn to feed themselves and cease to be dependent on the all encompassing Government. THAT to me is what Lyndon Johnson brought to our country.

Mary Alpha said...

BTW, my husband heard a dr. on the radio say yesterday that TriCare will also be part of the new health care system. If true, we'll ALL be in this mess together. Sucks for sure.

MR T's Haircut said...

Umm Skippy, once in a while come back to the states... you are WAY off the mark and embarrassing yourself....

MR T's Haircut said...

I know you dont care for our AG Phib, but Florida is leading the charge....

UltimaRatioRegis said...

Skippy,

You ain't seen the football since kickoff.  Greedy insurance companies?  Huh.  Wouldn't be that tort reform was required in order to being to get ahold of health care costs rising at 3-4X the rate of inflation.  That would require going against the trial lawyers.  Heaven forbid. 

The system was saddled with people reaping benefits who never paid in a dime.  So it was going broke.  Thanks, LBJ and the war on poverty.  Which was really a war on prosperity.  So how does government fix a problem created by the squandering of massive amounts of tax dollars?  By hooking more non-contributors to the system and squandering even more massive amounts of tax dollars. 

I asked the sponsor of a bill in the People's Democratic Soviet Socialist Republic of Vermont how he could reconcile the bill's language that "comprehensive health care was an entitlement" but that the cost of that entitlement will not be borne by users equally for services provided.   Not surprisingly, he didn't have an answer.  Vermont is on its way to a single-payer system that is nothing short of socialized medicine.  The same system that has proven such a financial train wreck in other states, and is only successful in countries with an astronomical tax rate. 

Such is simple and unequivocal redistribution of the wealth.  If this is what you are after, call yourself what you are.  A socialist-communist who believes the role of government is to suppress market forces for the purposes of establishing "economic justice".  From each according to their capabilities, to each according to their needs.

UltimaRatioRegis said...

ab,

What is your take on the chances of the Constitutional challenges from VA and likely 30-odd other states?

UltimaRatioRegis said...

OAM,

Article IX also applies, IMHO. 

"The enumeration in the Constitution of certain rights, shall not be construed as to deny or disparage others retained by the people".

Byron said...

Skippy, maybe you better stay out of CONUS...you might just get to keep the rest of your paycheck...

Skippy, you've been pissed at Repubilicans since a Rep. President passed the law that allowed your ex to screw you over. Get over it. You're a smart guy. Take the flipping blinders off and USE YOUR FREAKIN' BRAINS.

And by no means am I a neo-con.

UltimaRatioRegis said...

Most of FDR's New Deal legislation was ruled unconstitutional.  Which is why he wanted to stack the Supreme Court. 

Skippy-san said...

I didn't attack you. I attacked Steyn,  Justice Roberts,  and I attacked insurance companies. They deserve it IMHO-especially Roberts because he is clearly bent on politicizing the court-and his whining about being criticized by the President is proof of that. The decision on campaign financing was incorrect. And as for Steyn-I'm just tired of seeing people quote him like he was some sort of prophet-because he is not.

This is personal to me-you think that the opponents are the only ones with a lock on anger? I'm furious with what insurance companies do to people every day-my son most importantly. What he has been through is literally a crime. You want to defend the insurance companies and the money they make? Fine. But don't expect me to support it.

Paul L. Quandt said...

PS- You can't spell for squat either.  It's Pedro the Lying.

Skippy-san said...

I am using my brains.  And no I have not been pissed at Republicans for that long-onl;y since a certain Republican decided he loved worthless Arabs more than his own people.

I support health care reform because it is the right thing to do. I support it because its time the US invested in its own citizenry. And I support it because I am tired of what insurance companies do. Their job is to pay the bill nothing more.

FWIW I've been back stateside for a year and a half. I'm going back overseas this year though-after seeing politics in this country, I cannot stand it.

UltimaRatioRegis said...

Phib,

Saw you went to the Glenmorangie Single Malt.  You may collect your chest hair from the clerk on your way out.

Skippy-san said...

I am not a communist or a socialist. I am an advocate of fairness. Most national health care systems are not "socialized." And many foreign countries provide universal health care of high quality at reasonable cost using private doctors, private hospitals, and private insurance plans. It can be done.

Will it be done here? That remains to be seen. But I do know this tort reform is only a band aid-and it does not solve the root problem which is unihibited access to care.

And somebody has to stick up for the other side.

UltimaRatioRegis said...

I beg to differ, Skip.  When the government controls rates, dictates options, suppresses market forces, and mandates that those who can pay must do so for both themselves and those who can't (won't) pay, you have socialism.  Be it health care or any other nationalized industry. 

Fairness?  My a55.  Where in the Constitution was the power given to the government to legislate equality of economic status?  At the same time I heard decrying the high cost of health care in my good old state house, I was told moments later that health care was not a "commodity" but a "right", and that the right extended to public inebriates and drug addicts, whose health care "needs" are among the highest costs the system can bear, but have no means whatsoever to pay anything into the system.  

Fairness.  Right.  Communism. 

There was talk also of going to the "German model".  Someone ought to place a call to Hannover Re and ask how their health reinsurance sector is coming along....

DeltaBravo said...

Skippy, they did NOT want health care REFORM or insurance REFORM.  Quit lying to yourself.  They did not need to do this humongous bill that is 2,000 pages of crap no one has even read.  Let's vote on it so we know what we have????  YGBSM!

They could have fixed this with a few smaller bills... like tort reform and caps on lawsuits, and they could have legislated COMPETITION in insurance so that people could buy across state lines and let the market fix the problem of price gouging and poor coverage.  Instead they're going to let the people who control the DMV and the post office dictate health care?

I'm sick of hearing about the uninsured.  I spend over $320 a month for coverage for myself (because evil ex husband cut me off.  Here's a clue bat... sometimes wives follow husbands all over the planet and still get screwed by the courts too.  So quit your whining.)  I don't buy a new car or expensive tv sets or boats or whatever.  I pay my insurance bill.  It's my priority.  Now people who had other priorities are going to gouge everyone else to give them their "right?"  Where the hell did it say we all had a right to everyone else paying for our stuff?

Wait till it's all rationed!   You ever talk to your parents' generation, which is on Medicare, about trying to find doctors and the fact that they can't always choose their own physicians? 

They could have fixed this with a few smaller bills that were limited in scope.  They didn't want to.  Wait till 1/6 of the country's economy starts reorganizing itself to compensate. 

DeltaBravo said...

Oh, and wait till the nation's small businesses have to start laying people off because they can't afford to insure everyone...  the businesses that employ 75 percent of the population.

These businesses that are "rich" because they file S-Corporation status like individuals and so because a shop owner makes over $250k a year, his business is taxed at higher rates?  Those are the businesses that will go under under the staggering weight of Obama's new mandates and higher taxes.

Wharf Rat said...

Pedro:

Au Contrare- I beg to differ- It was absolutely rammed through.  The Democrats loved the polls when they were in their favor, but a MAJORITY of US citizens were against this bill.  And you say this isn't a government takeover?  You are wrong sir - because they just told companies what to do, and made is so expensive that many will go out of business.  What happens then?  Socialized Medicine.

But you clearly didn't follow the arguments leading up to this did you?  You can't be so ignorant to think this is about health care do you?  It's about government control, and government dependency.  Socialist do NOT care about the money.  They care about one thing - what can the almighty state do to screw you.

Social Security?  What a crock - if the money I produced through my efforts were invested in the stock market, I would be a millionaire when I retired.  Instead - I'm feading a beast that will never be full.  If every one of us had invested the same money in the stock market, there'd be no requirment for a government handout.

Lyndon Johnson's Great Society - another crock - permanent dependency, robbing those poor souls of the opportunity to achieve, being told that they can't do better than their lot in life, leading to permanent poverty. 

Pedro - the baby boomers had as examples their parents who destroyed one of the worlds biggest evils in Hitler,and they did what with it?  Woodstock, pot, abortion - leading to the death of innocents and births of millions of babies w/out stable families cost billions in lost income, sex w/out consequence, with the explosion of STD's, the 'right of homeownership' w/out having to actually work for it, you name it - it's bad for our country.  Baby boomers - biggest whiners ever.  I'm in the age group, last year, but I'm not one of them.

Pedro - ripping on Tea Party activists?  Nice - so they get to do what's their constitutional right, and you're calling them names?  Nice - also - find a true cost estimate - CBO numbers can only show at face value - if you truly think this is budget neutral, you are amazingly ignorant.  Go to powerlineblog.com, and get the facts.  You can't hide behind the Hannity and Beck rip.  What true news are you referencing?  The MSM - yeah, that's honesty. 

Wharf Rat said...

Unbelievable - you really think Pelosi, Reid, Obama wanted to make a deal with Republican's?  You have got to be kidding me.  They wanted it as cover so they could say it was bipartisan.  They wanted the Republican's as useful idots.

I've never been more proud of the House and Senate Republicans, moderate and conservative.  Regardless of whether they were Conservative or Moderate - they were not going to be Socialists.

Deal making - what a crock.  True reform - meaning competition - still would have meant that the market controlled health care.  That is exactly opposite of what the democrats wanted to accomplish.

This has national security implications - and the intended consequences by the liberals has always been to neuter the military - now they're using back door way by taking too much money to support what we have- and until God ends this planet, there will always be a threat to the very existance of the United States.  We need a strong military.

DeltaBravo said...

Ohhh... you're just jealous because he was probably drinking foo-foo French red wine with the assuredly lovely Mrs. Salamander.   That trumps any malted beverage.  ;)

UltimaRatioRegis said...

Oh, dear, dear, dear. 

Though the Missus is undoubtedly lovely, Salamander's latest choice is by far that of the urbane sophisticate.  Single Malt uber alles.

SCOTTtheBADGER said...

Well said, Mary Alpha!

Thomas Paine said...

<p><span>"When plunder becomes a way of life for a group of men living together in society, they create for themselves in the course of time a legal system that authorizes it and a moral code that justifies it." Frederic Bastiat</span>
</p><p><span> </span>
</p><p><span>That quote describes the progressive liberal democrat’s current mode of operation and SOP. </span></p>

SCOTTtheBADGER said...

Sigh, what must you people think of me, a teetotalling Badger.  I have to many alcoholics in my family, to want to have anything to do with the stuff.

Wharf Rat said...

Fairness?  Reminds me of the move Stripes, when Bill Murray looked at someone in his platoon, and simply said - 'was it fair for him to be born like this?'

and 'we're muts' - 'we've been kicked out of every decent country in the world' (or something like that), and 'we are the great American fighting soooldier' - 'we're 10 and 1!'

Fairness - Skippy - life isn't fair.  You can't legislate fairness.  You can legislate equal opportunity, not equal outcomes.  Hey, I lost an internal job from a sales rep from a competitor company.  At one point our company hired international sales reps from the competition, that basically kicked those of us in the teeth who wanted to move up.  This person had the opportunity to move up internally at his company, then came over to us.  I wanted to move up in my company, and was kicked in the teeth.  I showed them - the very next year I won a National Sales Award called President's Club.  That rep has yet to win a memo (though he's a nice guy and pretty good at his job). 

Fairness - because I was 45, and didn't have a master's degree, the Navy in it's wisdom didn't take me last year when I tried to get in as a Supply Officer, which didn't have an age requirment.  'Fairness' would require that they take me, even though they had candidates w/advanced degree's.  I should have taken the time to get my masters degree - my fault, not the Navy's.  So instead, this weekend I'm going for the VP position of my local Navy league chapter.  If I can't serve in one area, I'm d.... well going to find another opportunity to 'serve'.

Fairness is a concept for those who didn't work hard enough to achieve enough, feeling bad that they didn't get what someone else did who did achieve. 

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touch said...

God never shuts one door but he opens another. ........................................

Dave Scott said...

Ok, at the risk of fanning the fires here.

As an "overseas" reader, I am surprised at the "strong" reaction / comments re this issue.

Possible for some-one to explain in very simple terms what is upsetting every one ?

I have lived & worked under three (3) Health Care Systems:

New Zealand
Australia
now Singapore.

Australia with its MEdicare, New Zealand with its, well "so called NHS" style, and Singapore which is sort of government / private semi USA. (Cheap local doctor visits, "expensive" hospital stays --depending on if citizen, how much u earn etc.).

All I can ad is that my father is alive today due to NZ Health System - 3 heart attacks / 4 or 5 strokes, plus long term hospital stay, Total cost to him: $70 per year for the ambulance (Order of St John).
However, all three countries's health systems seem to work more or less, not staying one os better than the other. But it certainly doesn't seem to cause the same degree of feeling whenever it is debated -- well in NZ anyway.

Just curious, because at the moment I cannot make head or tail of what the actual issue is.

ewok40k said...

that uote equally well describes CEOs of insurance industry...

Byron said...

Skippy, you went straight to the looney bin when you used that stupid world, "fairness". That was dumb as dirt. You'd think by now you'd understand the concept that 'fair' means everyone has the same chance. Your 'fair' means that them that won't try to get it will get it off the backs of us that did work our asses off to get 'it'. And that's fair exactly how?

Grumpy Old Ham said...

<span>You can't legislate fairness</span>

Yet that idea has been the driving force behind 45+ (at least, if not 80) years of the Democrats' legislative agenda.  "Pursuit of Happiness" /= "Happiness", dontcha know.

Grumpy Old Ham said...

True, and people have always been free to purchase said health care on a cash basis.  In fact, people in my family have done so for procedures not covered by Tri-to-get-care.

CoRev said...

Dave, you have to be steeped in Am. History to understand the Impacts of individual freedom and the calls to rebellion.  If you live outside the US and there is neither a Monarchy nor a dictator, then you can and should thank the US for leading the way.  We thank the early Greeks, but those things are no longer taught here and I suspect anywhere.

This bill is an afront to those values of individual freedoms and God given rights.  Mandated purchase of insurance, overlaying Fed demands over states rights to control the insurance industry,  mandating levels of coverage within the industry are just a few of the issues associated with individual rights.

Finally, Dave, we see the qualtity of care associated with the systems you have cited.  We already know we have the best care possible in the world.  Yes, it is more expensive than some, but even that is in question when do an accounting of apple to apples.  But, the reality is going to the other systems does not improve our own, but lowers to their standards.  This bill also does not lower today's costs, but actually increases them.

So does that start to explain the passion?  We have an abortion of a bill that does little to actually improve anything, but does pass great gobs of power over our every day lives to the Govt.

UltimaRatioRegis said...

Dave,

Try the New Zealand model with 308 million citizens, including about 34 million who contribute little or nothing to the system but draw proportionately far higher and more frequent costs from that system.

UltimaRatioRegis said...

Perhaps, ewok, but the CEOs of the insurance industry are not those spending $1.6 trillion of the citizens' tax money.  You have the option of choosing another insurance company, or none at all.  Government, however, is forced upon us. 

UltimaRatioRegis said...

Tell you what, Skippy. 

You go ahead and open a checking account in which you deposit money from your income or personal wealth.  You can draw from it any time.  But so can I.  If I can't make good my withdrawal, I can borrow from you to make up the difference. 

Sounds fair.

LT B said...

I got a 98% on my NKO driven PPT on the Constitution and I see a constitutional storm on the horizon as well.  :)

El Gordo said...

Your friend is quite correct about health care in Germany, with one exception: the VAT rate is 19%. It used to be 16%. The "conservative" Christian Democrats advocated a 2% rise. For this they were attacked by the Social Democrats. After the election, they formed a coalition government and together raised it by 3%.

Yes, you would be surprised how many people opt out and get private insurance if they make enough money or are self-employed. In fact, too many. Which is why the government is slowly regulating the advantages away.

El Gordo said...

Oh, and health care reform is ongoing and permanent. EVERY incoming government tinkers with the system. Get used to it. What your are actually owed in exchange for your mandatory contributions gets decided day by day.

Skippy-san said...

URR-Isn't that the same as marriage? :)

 Like it or not the US is going to have to come up with a solution like Singapore's and you are going to have to be forced to save for both retirement and health care-whether you like it or not. Singapore does that and have they have a nice place to live and work. A lot nicer than Dullsville AL-that's for sure.

Skippy-san said...

That's crap-if anything you gain from economies of scale. TR Reid proved that in his book.

Byron said...

There you go with that "fairness" thing again. Who decides what's "fair"? You? Me? The crackhead on the corner? Those fine people in Congress who clearly voted into law a program a majority of their constituents plainly disliked? Please name the omnipotent totally fair person who decides what's "fair".

Andrewdb said...

<span>>You have the option of choosing another insurance company, or none at all.  </span>

Not as of today.  That's a big part of the problem.

Andrewdb said...

I would be surprised (pleasently) if the court cases do anything other than tie it up for years - I am cynical enough to think that Dr. Paul is the only one in DC who as actually read the Constitution and tries to follow it - isn't that sad, as I don't really like a lot of his stuff.

Constitutional law basically since FDR (Old Horseface to my g-grandfather - the other side of the family served in his Cabinet - family reunions in the 1930's were few and far between) has allowed the Federal government to do what it wants.  Good lord, look at the Kelo case on eminant domain!  One of my law profs used to say there were two Supreme Court opinions - "Yeah, so?" and "You must be kidding!"  I fear this stuff will be the first.  If the government can require auto insurance it can likely require health insurance.  I think this law does a lot of "the states shall do this, that and the other thing" rather than have the Feds do it themselves, which is the way the 55 mph speed limit came in you recall.

I don't like this thing at all, I think it will be another step to destroy our economy, but I don't think the courts will save us.  I hope I am wrong.

cdrsalamander said...

Dave,
New Zealand: Relatively homogeneous. 
Population: 4.3 million
Area: 268,021 sq km
Government: Parliamentary democracy/Constitutional Monarchy


<p>Australia: Very homogeneous. 
</p><p>Population:22.2 million
</p><p>Area: 7,617,930 sq km
</p><p>Government: Federal Parliamentary democracy/Constitutional Monarchy

</p><p> 
</p><p>
</p><p>Singapore: Heterogeneous city-state 
</p><p>Population:4.9 million
</p><p>Area: 710 sq km
</p><p>Government: Parliamentary republic




</p><p>United States: Heterogeneous. 
</p><p>Population:308.9 million
</p><p>Area: 9,826,675 sq km
</p><p>Government: Federal constitutional presidential republic

</p><p> 
</p><p> 
</p><p>Apples, oranges, lemons, and avocados.  This would not be the problem if this was treated via the American Federal system - let the States do this if they want.  Texas (pop. 24.7 million/area 696,241 sq km) and New York (pop. 19.5 million /area 141,288 sq km) have very different people, cultures, needs, and desires of their people.  Same with Mississippi vs. Vermont as another example.  The USA is just too big and diverse, as our Founders knew, for the needs of the people to be best served by a large central government.
</p><p> 
</p><p>Also, if you look at how the Federal Government has run Social Security, Medicare, Freddie Mac, Fannny Mae, etc - then this should give you pause.
</p><p> 
</p><p>The largest difference is the US Constitution  - a subject covered in both my post and here in comments.  This will be settled in the courts - as our system of government was designed.</p>

Andrewdb said...

And after threatening to stack the Court, they got with his program and let things rip.  We've been paying the piper ever since.

Skippy-san said...

So what are saying hits the crux of the issue-we are so determined to be "exceptional" that we cannot take someone elses solution and use it for ourselves. That may be true-but its also more than a little stupid.

Plus, unlike some, I don't accept that the founding fathers expected the nation to remain stagnant. They understood that the Consititution, like the nation would evolve over time. One has to look at the whole document as amended.

Skippy-san said...

ME! :-$

UltimaRatioRegis said...

<span>Skippy,  
 
Why yes, it is quite like marriage.  However, the government doesn't mandate that I get married.   I made that mistake all on my own.
 
Singapore is a largely homogeneous population with known hereditary health risks, and strongly regulated insurance coverage.   
 
I do agree that Americans should be saving for their retirement.  But forced to?  Ditto health care.  I want to determine that risk. At 25, I might not choose to have health insurance.  At 45, I will reconsider.  A government that will not allow you to fail will also not allow you to succeed.   
 
Wanna be serious about saving for retirement?  Up the IRA limit to $25,000 from $5,000, and the 401(k)/403(b) limits from $15,000 to $40,000.  Instead of mandating that I must pay into a system that has NEVER kept pace with inflation, has far more drawing from it than ever paid in, and will likely be bankrupt and unable to meet its obligations to me by the time I am eligible to draw from the system I paid so much into.</span>

UltimaRatioRegis said...

Andrew,

Correct.  You USED TO, before the historic health care legislation took away more tax money and more of our rights.  Change you can believe in.

UltimaRatioRegis said...

Certainly not, Scott!  Nobody says you have to drink.  But if you are gonna, do it with class...

Old NFO said...

The entire thing is simply a power grab.  The Democrats have fought tooth and nail for years to thwart any attempt to bring down the cost of healthcare.  They oppose tort reform because they are funded by trial lawyers, they encourage unionization of healthcare workers because SEIU steals elections for them, they oppose allowing health insurance being sold across state lines because, despite their claims to the contrary, they take millions form healthcare insurance companies.  

This legislation will quickly morph into ever increasing nanny state legislation.  Democrats are already legislating what you can eat.  Except for where you put your sex organs they will soon be legislating everything else they can claim will affect medical costs and thus gain ever more control.

Mandatory helmet laws, if they even allow motorcycles.  No coverage if you smoke, drink, eat the wrong foods, are over their recommended weight or engage in any "Risky" behaviors," (Sodomy excepted of course.)

The next step is giving all the undocumented Democrats citizenship prior to the 2012 election.  Of course they will all be eligible for healthcare paid for by other people.  

They already control what kind of toilets we crap in, light bulbs we see by, cars we drive, phones we use, etc.  Exactly what is there they DON'T want to control?

Old NFO said...

Insurance companies have lower returns on investment than most other companies.  Not that the left cares about the truth if a lie suits them better.  The vast majority of industries make MORE money.  As for claim denials, MEDICARE denies more than three times as many claims on a percentage basis, Any Outrage at that?  Probably NOT!   If we are going to claim healthcare insurance companies are some kind of robber barons because they get a modest profit as a percentage of their investment we may as well throw out the entire free enterprise system and go communist.  The idea that some government bureaucrat is somehow more "compassionate" than the same person working for a private company is laughable.  

Skippy-san said...

Seriously though-the people don't like the bill because most of them are ignorant about what is in the bill and have taken little time to learn it.  Polls have consistently shown that when asked about indivdual items in the bill-they like those items.  been the process they don't like and the Democrats in turn have done a poor job of explaining what needs to happen. Of by the time they started-the well was so poisoned by death panels etc , you could have the tablets of Moses in your hand and most of this crowd would not believe it.

The most persistent myth of all of this is that America has "the finest health care" in the world. We don't. In terms of results, almost all advanced countries have better national health statistics than the United States... In terms of finance, we force 700,000 Americans into bankruptcy each year because of medical bills. Since we can't talk about fairness-I assume it has to follow that they all somehow "deserve" it. That may be the best example of "American exceptionalism" that I cannot or will not accept.

Grumpy Old Ham said...

I used to say the nanny-state would regulate and tax breathing if they could, until someone pointed out that mandatory health care insurance is essentially a de facto tax on breathing made de jure.

I suppose a "one child per registered Republican couple" could be next.

UltimaRatioRegis said...

Skippy, are you kidding me?  I work with hospital senior management from more than a dozen hospitals.  They know the tenets of the bill as proposed and as passed backwards and forwards.  They know exactly what the likely impact is.  Cost controls?  Right.  Always works great when a business cannot recoup cost of services. 

Question:  If you buy a bushel of apples at a price of five cents per apple, and have to sell the apples for no more than four cents, how many more bushels of apples will you buy?  And how well would you do if the government decided that apples were "a basic human right" and enacted rigid regulatory compliance that forced you to buy apples at a nickel apiece and sell them for 4 cents. 

That is a hell of a business model.

UltimaRatioRegis said...

GOH,

I fear what is next is that electricity will be deemed a "basic human right" in which distribution and generation entities will be required to provide services without sufficient profit margin, we will be taxed to pay for those who can't (won't) afford, and when the power companies go into receivership they will be nationalized a la GM. 

The "mortgage crisis" already happened because buying a home and realizing the American dream was a 'basic right" whether it could be afforded or not.  Voila.  People buying houses on risky mortages forced upon the lenders by federal legislation and threat of being hauled in front of Congress to explain their racist and bigoted lending practices.

Old NFO said...

There is already a move among the "Progressives" to designate high speed internet access as a right.  Gotta have electricity to surf the web so I guess that will make it a penumbra of an unenumerated right.  Of course, since it's a right that means it all has to be provided at taxpayer expense.

Old NFO said...

With over 100 trillion in debt and unfunded liabilities, and adding to it by over 200 billion every month, we will soon get to the point where we will have to scrap the entire military just to pay interest to China.  Now we're adding another huge entitlement program.  The real agenda seems to be to drive America into bankruptcy.  The far left loons think that is great because they think they will be able to pick up the pieces and take over.  Must be why they all favor gun control. :)

UltimaRatioRegis said...

There is definitely a correlation between gun control and the increasing intrusiveness of our own government.  An armed citizenry is the last redress of despotism.

cdrsalamander said...

Skippy,
Sure we can benchmark others .... if California wants Japan's system and it is allowed via their Constitution and does not violate the US Constitution - then go for it.  It it is so great - other States will follow.

If they want Japan's system but it doesn't pass Constitutional muster - then go through the process of changing the State and/or Federal Constitution.

Messy and clunky?  Sure.  It is supposed to be.  Freedom demands the rule of law - not the rule of man.  Deliberation, not diktat.

Andrewdb said...

Don't be silly - eletricity isn't a human right, it is the source of all evil, and we must dis-industrialize (is that a word?) to save the planet!

/sarc off

Andrewdb said...

Or just let people duduct the cost of health insurance premiums for their onw policy, like their employer can do now - it will cost too much you say?  Just when have we been worried about the deficit in the past 20 years?

Andrewdb said...

Skippy - Be sure to add "as amended by the people" not the courts efforts to read into it as a "living document"

Skippy-san said...

Ok-I'll trade my social security for guaranteed health care. I'm willing to take my chances on retirement-not on getting sick.

I do need to correct you, Singapore is NOT a homgenous population, unless you really like lumping Malays, Indonesians, Indians, Pakistanis, Filipino's, Ethnic Chinese and Malaysian Chinese ( don't forget us pesky gweilos and Singapore PR wanna-be's-like me!) into the same pot. I can guarantee you they don't see it that way.

Skippy-san said...

The difference here is that I don't accept the idea of "states rights". The simple truth of the matter is that the unless you set a standard, it will be a race to the bottom for the state that sets the lowest standard. That's not about accomdating indivdual differences-but figuring out who can demagogue the best.

We can have Japan's system tomorrow-it is called a public option. Nothing unconsitituional about it. And it works.

Skippy-san said...

Funny a close friend of mine is a health care professional working for a large hospital in Charleston. He supports the bill. He'd like to see changes in it to be sure-but he has the same frustration about that I do. The Republicans were never serious about changes-ever. Furthermore the charged atmosphere created by our current information environment ( or lack of it) provides more incentive to be an asshole than to be a statesman.

Tell you what though-find me a way to guarantee coverage for ANYONE who can pay, no denials and maybe I'll reconsider. None of the bandaid fixes like tort reform or selling across state lines ( which is not such a bad idea by the way) solve that fundamental problem.

The Public Option would have solved that though-but Sarah Palin and the rest of the loons who think like her posioned that well.

UltimaRatioRegis said...

So Skippy,

Shall we tell them to expunge the Tenth Amendment?  Any others you would like to get rid of while we are at it?

UltimaRatioRegis said...

<span>Huh.  Let me know if that friend is the hospital CEO or CFO and has to manage the balance sheet. Significant difference of opinion with my hospitals.  A cut in Medicare coverage, and now a limitation on the amount a hospital can charge prorated against that reduced medicare payment.  
 
So, are you trying to tell me that if someone is able and willing to pay for health insurance, they can't find it?  Or do you mean that they can drag in a pre-existing condition that has an exceedingly expensive treatment protocol and expect the insurance company to fork out hundreds of thousands upon the payment of a few months of premiums?  Since when are insurance companies obligated to pay for treatment for a pre-existing condition?  Does your auto policy pay for accidents you had before they covered you?  Can you get your death benefits from your life insurance before you die?  
 
</span><span>The public option.  Everyone gets the value, but only some of us pay.  From each according to their capabilities, to each according to their needs. The government will drive insurance companies out of the health insurance sector but grossly underbidding (with no compelling reason to adhere to actuarial tables), and then dip into the our tax dollars when the system runs out of money, which will be rapidly. 
</span>

UltimaRatioRegis said...

Thank you Al Gore/Ted Kaczynski.

Anthony Mirvish said...

The same people who "manage" the Federal budget, who gave us three unsustainable entitlement programs, and who claim they're best able to manage/regulate the economy are now going to give us universal, inexpensive health care...If anyone believes it, we deserve what we get.

Dave Scott said...

Gentle People

Thanks for your replies - something to contemplate during the day.

So, what I see / read is maybe this:

1. Possible Scale issues -- what works for 4.3 million  MAYNOT (most likely not ????) work for 308 million. (And to be honest, NZ system is creakin' at the doors, haha, though it has been for at least 25 to 30 years -- up to number XX restructure).

2. State vs Federal Rights -- ok, can only vaguely relate to that, when living in Australia, NSW always "bitchin'" about the rough deal it got from the FEDS".

3. Living in Singapore has introduced an element that I never had to worry about before - well at least in NZ, health insurance. Am lucky that I am covered by my job, which extends to cover my family .. plus I earn more than enough to allow me to make other choices. WAS a shock through -- not what I was brought up with .. and Skippy-san is right. Dealing with Insurance companies SUCKS big time.

4. Remember this though - the fact that there can be very vigorous (haha) discussion is a GOOD thing -- one shouldn't get upset if Skippy-san promotes an opposing view --- after all, isn't that the corner tone of democracy ? You don't have to like it, but as long as you stick to calling each other names, and not "drawing swords" well no foul I guess.

5. Every country gets the government they deserve -- that's what voting / democracy is all about. In NZ, the previous government did something I consider very stupid, and disbanded the RNZAF's combat wing ... BUT hey,  they were voted in, and had the "mandate". Much the same as what happened in the 1980s with ANUZS. (Same party by the way). Guess the point I'm trying to make, is that Obama was voted in, you knew his policies (how bizarre though, a politician actually trying to keep his promises), so vote him out. :) .


Anyway once again, thanks for replying. It is interesting. :)

Dave Scott said...

Have  to agree with Skippy-san there - Singapore ain't homogeneous -- not by a long way. Don't call every one chinese .. they won't like it.

Dave Scott said...

Also, if you don't like the government telling you what to do -- Singapore ain't the place for you.

I been here for 7 years plus - and I still can't get my head around the fact that no one here is prepared to give the government a hard time .... what is happening the US now could NEVER happen here in Singapore.  8-)

UltimaRatioRegis said...

But, THIS time they're sure to get it right!

Obamacare:  The efficiency of the Department of Motor Vehicles, the compassion of the Internal Revenue Service.

UltimaRatioRegis said...

Well, from the standpoint of health issues, they are quite homogeneous.  Much like the people of Scandanavia, the Baltic, the Danes, the Dutch, the Germans, and the Finns are in northern Europe. 

Nobody was talking about culture.

MR T's Haircut said...

Germany... nice comparison Phib.. I LIKE Germany great beer... Bavaria ... beautiful...

wouldnt trade it for my 1991a1 Colt... nope ...

honu said...

Amazingly, in san diego yesterday the sun rose and set as scheduled, then rose as scheduled today.
based on all the hysteria I've been reading here and hearing on the radio, I thought the world was going to end.
waiting to see what happens at 1900 tonight.

I suspect all of us on this blog have health care.  I also suspect many views would be different if that were not the case.
Its easy to say 'I've got mine', the hell with everyone else.

UltimaRatioRegis said...

Hey Honu,

I spent six years without health care, and busted my a55 to find a job with benefits, and I work 50-60 hours a week to keep it, so can the "I got mine" crap.  I EARNED mine.  You earn yours. 

As for your sunrise and sunset comments, the sun rose and set above Auschwitz, too.  That didn't mean a tragedy was not occurring.

DeltaBravo said...

Apparently it will be the IRS in charge of determining that everyone has bought a health insurance policy.  Once the government has driven all the private suppliers out of business with outrageous demands, watch our cost for "coverage" go through the roof. 

Skippy-san said...

That's because the Minister Mentor has a place for those who don't like what the PAP has to say-Changi.

That said-it is my favorite spot on the planet. Bar none. Just need a job to pay the bills-and I am so there.

DeltaBravo said...

By your example then the whole country is flocking to Mississippi to partake of their school system? 

No.  People are leaving Massachusetts in droves because of their "high standards". 

Public option means eventually there is ONLY ONE PROVIDER and we're all stuck with it.  Whether it's good or not. 

Skippy-san said...

What does that mean? If you are saying there is unversal health care for Singaporean citizens, that's not homogenous-that's what the goal should be. They make it work in spite of a diverse culture, which kind of puts a hole in Phib's argument that it can't. Dave's point is the more germane-you play on their ball field, you play by their rules. Individuals have to pay into their Medisave accounts and so do companies. Don't like it? Take your company somewhere else. Does not seem to be discouraging their economic growth.

UltimaRatioRegis said...

Skippy,

What it means is that they are similar genetically, like Northern Europe.  The health issues are fairly consistent, though with many of the usual suspects due to bad habits, etc.  But no high incidences of skin cancer, or sickle-cell anemia, or diabetes.  In the US, we have almost everything that is out there for genetic and habitual health issues because of our size and heterogeneity.

DeltaBravo said...

Uninhibited access to care... yes, they WILL end that pesky problem.  Probably the first people to stop that will be the guys that won WWII for us.  No point wasting precious money on a new hip or a bypass for gramps.  Statistically he only has a few years left anyway.  Have YOUR parents had trouble finding a doctor who will take new Medicare patients?  Oh, the uninhibited access will stop once the bean counters are in control.  Or they can do it the Mexican way.  I loved hearing tales down there about how the state hospitals would deny pain medication to poor women in labor until they signed consent forms to have their tubes tied.  Nice.  Ever been in labor, Skippy?  When your only medical option is a government eager to engineer its costs... well, you'll get what you pay for.   You seem to think a state big and powerful enough to pay everyone's medical bills will be a benign state.  Foolish assumption!

Skippy-san said...

I am trying to tell you that someone able and willing to pay for health insurance cannot find it. My son had to do that-because he has a pre-existing condition through no fault of his own. ( I guess I could blame a Navy flight surgeon-but I have my own bones to pick with those a$$holes). When he finally did get it-the premiums were obscene. I had to help him with the payments. My position is clear-insurance companies should not be able to do that.

What is clear through all of these conversations is that, in tea bagger land, there is no belief in the concept of real hardship. Everyone deserves to suffer-for what ever reason. "I got mine-so screw you for not getting yours". It is a common political narrative-but the simple truth for the majority of people in need, it is just not true.

DeltaBravo said...

We have the finest system.  Don't you know that you cannot guarantee outcomes?  Statistics about our health care take into account factors other countries don't deal with like we do.  Teen pregnancy, multiple pregnancies from different fathers, abuse, drug use, women with multiple sex partners increasing chances of cervical cancer, diet and diabetes that are disproportionately represented by some groups, weight issues, alcohol issues in some areas, violence... some things the best emergency room in the world can't cure.  So you're going to fix the problem by extending free coverage when our borders are already flooded with people coming for freebies?  Do those wonderful European and other countries have MILLIONS of immigrants coming in and using the system and paying nothing into it? 

National health statistics are dependent upon a lot of things that it's not politically correct to discuss.  At the end of the day, if an inner city emergency room sees three indigent heroin overdoses and 5 gunshot wounds and all 8 die, because the doctor is NOT Jesus and can't bring the dead or virtually dead back to life, does that mean our health care system is not the finest?  Even though 100 percent of the patients died?  Our statistics are skewed by our "homogenous" population.  And I can't buy health insurance across state lines, so I have to pay according to the rates of people I live around.  That was the first question I was asked when I was shopping for health coverage:  What's your zip code?  THEN what's your age?   Interesting.

DeltaBravo said...

Yeah, I got mine too.  I pay every penny of coverage because my employer doesn't.  And so I'm wearing a 6 year old pair of $16 jeans and a $10 top I bought 5 years ago.  Some people don't want to go without the new car or the wide screen tv and they take their chances they won't get sick and don't pay several hundred a month for coverage.  So that means I'm selfish?

UltimaRatioRegis said...

So your son COULD find insurance, but at a high price.  Just like me.  Pre-existing condition, insurance costs a lot.  Such is life. 

Don't start with the "real hardship" crap.  That class-warfare BS might work on some idiot college student but not on someone who earns what he or she has.  I got mine.  I got mine by EARNING mine.  By watching my money and not buying what I couldn't afford, and by saving even when it cramped the fun lifestyle.  Also by not indulging in costly and unhealthy habits and expecting someone else to pick up the tab for my stupidity. 

Someone who doesn't spend the time or money to get an education for the better job bemoans the job I have?  Tough damned luck.  Someone goes out and buys a succession of brand new cars or a house they can't afford during their prime earning years and then begrudges my retirement savings or my paid-off house?  Find a mirror when you look for who to blame. 

Grew up in central MA during the first Obama administration (Carter).  13% unemployment and 13% inflation.  See what that does to your bank account three winters in a row.  Had enough to eat, but the house got damned cold when the oil ran out.  And keeping the old cars running was a challenge.  Yet, could walk into a supermarket and watch people buy with food stamps the kinds of things that my parents couldn't afford.  So don't blather about fairness.

Anonymous said...

"As for your sunrise and sunset comments, the sun rose and set above Auschwitz, too.  That didn't mean a tragedy was not occurring."


BRAVO!!!!

FCC said...

<span>> based on all the hysteria I've been reading here and hearing on the radio</span>

KOGO 600AM, huh?

FCC said...

I love to tell my civilian friends, when they bring up National Health Care, about military Tricare (or, as I prefer to spell it, Try Care).

Like when my son was born, and I had to pay out of pocket for the childbirth at a hospital out in town because my wife was a "locally acquired dependent."  I didn't like paying for it, but I didn't so much mind because I had (and hold, until receiving evidence otherwise) ZERO confidence in USNH Yokosuka's Obstetrics ward.  The wife of one of my shipmates DIED while in labor there; another shipmate's neonate didn't make it 24 hours (with no indications during the 9 month gestation beforehand of any problems) -- both at USNH Yokosuka. 

Now, I know that childbirth is messy, dangerous bidness --- but out of all the people that I know,  for two to have a zero-sum visit to the maternity ward (all between 2004 and 2006) left me with even less confidence in them than in my Motrin-o-matic IDC.

And now, the rest of the country is entitled to that kind of care!

Wharf Rat said...

Honu:

Hysteria?  Is that what you heard?  So if someone has an argument, and can build that argument, if you don't like it - by definition it's 'hysteria?'  You're kidding right?

Everyone knows this is the greatest country in the world, defended by the greatest Navy in the world (this is a navy blog by the way).  That also means when 219 people (+59 senators) vote to take away liberty and freedom, I just might have a problem with that.

At some point you simply have to stop, and VEHEMENTLY(sp?) oppose continued cradle to grave dependency, because it robs America of it's exceptionalism. 

We won WWII because we came up w/better weapons systems than our enemies did.  Remember the Essex class carriers, Corsairs, Mustangs, 'the Jug' (P-47's), B-17's, B-29's, B-26's, B-24's, Hellcats, Wildcats, CVE's, the Iowa-class battleships?  Yeah, according to todays liberals - naw, we can't have that, it's not fair to our enemies who didn't have them.  We were exceptional, and we brought liberty, and then - we gave the countries back to their citizens.  That's American exceptionalism.  And it's time we fought for it.

This health care crap is so bad because it mandates things that will likely take private companies out of business.  Private companies that I get my health care from - and give it to some bureaucrat?
As I said below, this isn't about health care, never, never was.  It's about control.  I'm tired of writing this to ignorant people. 

Combat NFO said...

Dave,

The problem in the US is that the same people that refuse to carry insurance because it's an affront to their liberty, have no problem receiving care and not paying their bills.  We won't mandate coverage to cover the care required by laws that mandate care in an emergency room.   If we'd just let ER's turn away those without insurance or proven ability to pay, more Americans would have insurance.  Until then, people will complain about being forced to have coverage as it interferes with their "rights" to force hospitals to absorb the cost of care.  A right to care without the obligation to pay is tearing the system apart.  Until we're ready to look at cancer patients without coverage and say "too bad," we need some semblance of basic universal coverage to spread the costs among those willing to mandate care (us).

Skippy-san said...

At some point you simply have to stop, and VEHEMENTLY(sp?) oppose continued cradle to grave dependency, because it robs America of it's exceptionalism.........
I'm tired of writing this to ignorant people.


Yep, no hysteria there.

Skippy-san said...

As the S.O. would tell you-because Americans eat and drink all kinds of things that are bad for them. Say one thing-you will stay healthier eating in Asia than you will here. But they do smoke more over there.

Skippy-san said...

I think you mean the 9th Amendment. There is no Article 9 in the Constitution.

Skippy-san said...

Well if you consider having to spend 40% of your income on health insurance-just too damn bad, well we definitely part ways there. That's a crime. Period,  end of statement.  What you had to do or did not have to do really has nothing to do with this discussion. If anything having guaranteed insurance-or at the very least-portable insurance would have said my son a lot of grief and it probably would have helped you too.

Skippy-san said...

Under the 10th Amendment, if Congress enacts a law pursuant to one of the "powers . . . delegated to the United States by the Constitution," then that law is supreme, and nothing a state can do changes this. Any state power to "nullify" unconstitutional federal laws has long been rejected. Furthermore the Supreme Court has long allowed Congress to regulate and prohibit all sorts of "economic" activities that are not, strictly speaking, commerce. The key is that those activities substantially affect interstate commerce, and that's how the court would probably view the regulation of health insurance.

If you really want to fight the bill on Consitutional grounds-the better choice is to make it unconsitutional. E.G.  Article V of the Constitution gives state legislatures the power to require Congress to convene a convention to propose an amendment to the Constitution. If two-thirds of state legislatures demand an amendment barring the federal regulation of health insurance or an individual mandate, Congress would be constitutionally bound to hold a convention.

Of course it would tear the country apart-but hey, that seems to be what Tea Party Central seems to really want anyway.

Skippy-san said...

That is not what it means in Japan.

Grumpy Old Ham said...

Monopolies have a way of doing that...Brian Roberts, call your office.

Grumpy Old Ham said...

Right, and that's next -- regulating "unhealthy" (for the politically correct values of "unhealthy") foods out of existence. 

For example: http://www.laoverview.com/a7349-bill-may-ban-salt-use-at-new-york-city-restaurants

Gotta keep those healthcare costs down.

And people said this wasn't gonna be a slippery slope...maybe that bridge in NYC really is for sale, after all.

kris (fmr QM1) said...

The English NHS lives, 50 yrs+. While I can always see a doctor, I think I'd rather be sick in the USA. They will pull out the stops here - but the hospitals are FILTHY. There's also the pleasure of treating the illegal world and his wife and burden that places on an already stretched system.

Yep, I know about the Founders. I also know about FDR and this nation would still be in the shitter had he not adopted a "socialist" approach. And for all these guys moaning about the Constitution, start giving back your social security and medicare and maybe I'll listen.

Something had to be done. This Bill is unsat, but the Repubs have had YEARS to come up with a bright idea and they haven't.

UltimaRatioRegis said...

So Skippy,

Having sorta breezed through the Constitution on a couple of occasions, I can't remember seeing where the Federal Government has the explicit or implicit authority to require citizens to buy life or health insurance.  You don't have to buy auto insurance, either, by the way, if you don't drive.  But driving is a licensed activity.  Unless of course, the Federal Government is going to enact an inhale-exhale licensing requirement.  Which I would not put past them.

UltimaRatioRegis said...

CNFO,

The greatest number of violators who take advantage of EMTALA don't belong here.  The drain on the system from illegals is extraordinarily high, even in a per capita comparison.  Ask California and Arizona.

kris (fmr QM1) said...

oh yeah, and wat up with the "sic semper tyrannus". I know it's the Virginia state motto.

I also know it's what John Wilkes Booth shouted before he offed Lincoln.

That and "watering the tree" are oblique little threats that make the tea-partiers look deranged.

Skippy-san said...

But that is a seperate problem.

UltimaRatioRegis said...

Oh Lordy. 

Some root cause analysis.  Why are costs so high?  Rising insurance costs.  Have insurance profits skyrocketed proportionally?  Nope.  Hospitals rolling in cash?  Heh.  So where does the money go? 

Obama's silly and ill-informed assertion that doctors and hospitals order and perform all sorts of unnecessary tests and procedures to soak the patient for extra money (remarks not made off the cuff, but in Congress) made him a lot of enemies among clinicians and hospitals. 

Those tests and procedures are done because failing to do them, however unnecessary, leaves both the doctors and hospitals at risk for malpractice and negligence law suits and massive legal costs.  It is called defensive medicine.  And those protocols are the result of analysis by hospital counsel and risk management of successful (but still VERY expensive) defenses in malpractice cases. 

So I ask again, where does the money go?  Into the pockets of plaintiffs and lawyers whose increasingly specious and unreasonable claims of malpractice and neglect are being upheld and MASSIVE settlements being awarded.  With the plaintiff's attorneys taking 30-40%. 

There are enough real cases of misconduct and malpractice to keep insurance necessary.  But when the 82 year old smoker comes in with three other co-morbidity diagnoses and dies in his/her sleep, and family is able to successfully litigate or settle for millions because the hospital or physician "failed" to order a CAT scan to examine the cancer that was already known to be fatal, you have massive insurance costs.  Unless you expect the doctor and the hospital to assume that risk and put their career or entire institution at the mercy of capricious and increasingly activist judges.

So don't tell me that tort reform is a band-aid.  The insurance costs for the nurses, clinicians, facilities, equipment manufacturers, drug makers, etc., all feed into the cost of health care.  Don't like that fact?  Tough luck.  You want to make health care affordable?  Stop the litigation insanity.  Don't care for tort reform?  Wanna keep letting non-payers into the system for free?  Watch the cost spiral continue.

Anonymous said...

Kris,
That is just pathetic. Move your piece to Go and skip a turn.  

Roll again once you take your meds.

UltimaRatioRegis said...

Not to the hospital budgets, it's not.

UltimaRatioRegis said...

<span>"<span>I also know about FDR and this nation would still be in the shitter had he not adopted a "socialist" approach."</span>  
 
Nice try.  FDR's economic policies are considered by many historians to have actually worsened economic conditions prior to the war.   
 
Well, let's see.  The Democrats controlled both houses of Congress for more than forty of the last sixty years.  The House for almost fifty.  The Republicans controlled the House and (mostly) the Senate for 12 years.  During those 12 years, there was a Democrat in the White House for seven of them.   
 
And fella, I would LOVE to have the Government give ME back MY money paid to SS and Medicare.  I haven't seen a dime yet of more than $70k (according to SSA) and by the end of my working life more than $180k, and likely never will.  Give me that $70k to invest in my own IRA/401k and I wouldn't need a dime from SS or Medicare.</span>

SCOTTtheBADGER said...

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honu said...

On Monday, the nutjobs on San Diego radio were predicting (with glee in their voice) a significant downturn in the stock market because of "Obamacare".  It went up.  No mention of the upturn Tuesday morning but again a prediction of a major downturn in the stock market because of "Obamacare".   It went up again,  significantly.  Today they acknowledged that it went up yesterday, but predicted that today is the day it goes down because of "Obamacare".  Hoping for the market to go down to stick it to Obama just seems wrong.

These same rightwing nutjobs were ecstatic when Chicago lost the olympics a few months ago because they said it negatively reflected on Obama.

Cheering against America because you don't like Obama, while constitutionally protected, doesn't make you a good American in my book.

DeltaBravo said...

Skippy, you are not making sense.  Pres. Bush begged for changes to the law that would have allowed portability, cross-state insurance purchases and other methods that would have made life better for your son.  The demoncrats in congress never ever took him up on it.  They did not want to fix what was wrong with the insurance laws.  THey wanted to revamp the entire system, throwing out the baby with the bathwater, to grab power.

Once the private insurance providers are run out of business, watch the gummint hike up the costs so you are paying 40 percent for coverage. 

By your reasoning, the government should buy everyone a house because it's unfair some people live in bigger houses than others, and some are born to poor families and never get to have 5,000 square feet of living space.  Wait.  Oops.  We already did that experiment.  Giving free housing to people who didn't earn it... they didn't take care of it when they were given the free housing. 

One of two things will happen with the gummint picking up the dime for health care... either people will have no incentive to take care of their health beyond the obvious... I mean, why NOT smoke if you get cancer you won't have to pay for it all.  Or the gummint will then come in and tell you what you can drink and eat at the risk of losing your coverage.  Oh, yes it can.  It told all those poor mothers they couldn't get married or they'd lose their free housing and food stamps.  So that created a secondary order of social effects that plague us to this day. 

Wonder what secondary effects will be created when the law of unintended consequences kicks in with this new debacle. 

Outlaw Mike said...

<span>'I also know about FDR and this nation would still be in the shitter had he not adopted a "socialist" approach."</span>    

'This nation' WAS in the shitter because of FDR's socialist approach. I'm reading The Forgotten Man by Amity Shlaes and unemployment didn't sink below 20% for a decade.

I'm nog going to speak out on FDR's efforts re health care, but I suspect that whatever measures were taken, a consensus was reached between Republicans and Democrats. Same goes, AFAIK, for LBJ's Social Security measures and, also AFAIK, for Medicare and Medicaid.

But what passed two days ago is the exact opposite of a bipartisan project.

Skippy-san said...

Actually Republicans controlled Congress up till 2006. I don't recall Bush "begging" for anything but how to continue the war in Iraq. The Republicans could have passed the "reforms he begged for" when they passed the Medicare Part D.

I keep notice this recurring theme-America is full of freeloaders, in  a lot of the comments. I never talked about free housing or free health insurance for that matter. I'm talking about finding a way to come up with insurance that is reasonably priced, anyone can get, and provides the required services, and allows people to do other things besides have to make drug company and insurance company CEO's richer, so as to keep them from do things like this.

My own belief is that sooner or later-we will have to grow used to the idea of a mandate-a mandate to save for retirement and a mandate to have health insurance as they do in Singapore. Its not perfect but it is better than what we have. Singapore has the highest rate of homeownership in the world. Why? Because they are able to leverage the equity in their CPF accounts to buy apartments. They also have a scheme to ensure a quality standard for housing is met. Not granted there are people who default, don't pay their bills, etc-but its not the majority of people. To put it bluntly it is because their society won't accept that behavior. There is a lot we can learn from that.

If I had been forced-from time I was an Ensign to save 10% of my salary in TSP, divorce or no divorce I would be a hell of a lot better off. Yes I could have done it myself-but did you do EVERYTHING you should have when you were young? Those kinds of mandates are not crushing your freedom-they are enablers of it.

UltimaRatioRegis said...

Er, actually Skippy, the original text of the Bill of Rights was written as Articles I through X.  They became known as the first ten amendments, but were submitted together for the purposes of adding to the Constitution en masse. 

UltimaRatioRegis said...

Skippy,

The Republicans controlled the House of Representatives outright from 1995-2006.  They controlled the Senate from 1980-1986, and from 1995-2000 and with a VP tiebreaker from Jan-Jun 2001, until Jeffords did his Benedict Arnold trick.  The Republicans controlled the Senate again from 2002-2006. The Democrats have controlled both houses of Congress since.

Prior to that, both houses of Congress, with the exception of the Senate in 1952-54, were controlled by the Democrats since 1950.    The FDR and the LBJ administrations were the ones who set Social Security and Medicare up for bankruptcy.

UltimaRatioRegis said...

I am fairly certain that the stock market will reflect the impact of the massive incurring of debt involved in the nationalizing of health care.  Debt concerns tend to have an adverse affect.

DeltaBravo said...

When the 3.8 percent Medicare surtax on investment income and dividends kicks in, the market will react.

Among other things.

Wharf Rat said...

Chris:

The Republicans had time, and yes they should have.  But the reforms they wanted - competition across state lines, would have been opposed by the democrats.  And would likely have suffered a filabuster.  I agree, they should have done it anyway, but the same thing happened with mortgage reform.

Barney Frank said there was no problem - it's on tape - when republicans tried 12 times to do something, and minority squashed it.  This recession is self-caused, not economic ups and down, because owning a home was a 'right', not something you needed to earn.  Now we have the same thing here.  The stock market won't go down until the taxes kick in, and then lets talk.

Wharf Rat said...

Skippy-san:

So - opposing dependency/socialism is hysteria?  If you believe this, you are lost. 

Wharf Rat said...

ScottthBADGER:

Yes - and on January 10, 2009 I was in Norfolk and saw ex-USS Wisconsin.  There is nothing, and I mean nothing, like a battleship.  Wisconsin should be proud.  And since I am a Viking, we are prouder still to have experienced for one year that you experienced for 16 - Favre.  He made our season.

Skippy-san said...

Since its not socialism-or dependency, yea its hysteria. Need to go back and look up the definition of Socialism

Anonymous said...

yu are havinga a laugh! Had you invested the money in the market yourself, you would have lost your freeking shirt last year. Or maybe all the boomers busing tables at Denny's hasn't registered in your brains?

Anonymous said...

LOL! FDR is now responsible for the Great Depression, the Dust Bowl and the '29 crash?

LT B said...

Charlie K has a good OP-ED:

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/03/25/AR2010032502406_2.html

Stand by for the VAT.

LT B said...

You KNOW I LOVE me some BBs  :)

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