November 28th, 2013
Isn't it ironic?
That the Democrats continue to excoriate private insurance companies for kicking some people off of some private health plans, while Obama's answer is to kick pretty much all people off of all private plans?
By Barry Secrest
"Obamacare" has now been officially relanguaged as "The Affordable Care Act," by both Obama and the Democrats, and that should tell you everything else you ever needed to know about how things are going in Obamacareville.
As the Holidays begin and Americans collectively pause to take stock of their Blessings, the nation may find its well of available enthusiasm dwindling mightily, especially after five years of a government which has implemented so many so-called safety nets that most Americans now have to weave their way through a landscape practically littered with them, to avoid becoming entangled.
Indeed, the question becomes at what point do those safety nets become capture nets or even sticky webs, especially since the particular safety net which was supposed to be Obamacare has already ensnared millions of unsuspecting victims, formerly identified as American citizens, by the way. The Obama regime, in concert with the Democrats, have installed via a web of undeniable deceit, a virtual entrapment of at least 1/6th of the US economy, and the people along with an increasingly befuddled mainstream media, have finally begun to notice.
To wit, everyone in America is now required, by Obama's grand edict, to actively purchase health insurance, or else. But.... not exactly all right at this moment, if you please. You see, the White House now wants lots of people to buy Federal coverage, since it has cancelled a plethora of private insurance policies forcing folks out of coverage. But not too many, mind you, due to concerns about the strain which it may place upon its frigidly delicate website.
So, despite the former major campaign to sign up as many people as possible, ostensibly as soon as possible, that impetus now needs to be tamped down to something more like a shadow of an impulse or perhaps even a moderate incitement, a tittle of effort rather than a spur. Not too many, not too few, but just right...
Just think of it as the Goldilocks Archetype.
You see the scheme must be rationed out and measured by slow operations over time; it's simply the nature of the beastie.
So fragile remains the website, in fact, that Obama has now pushed even the Small business signups campaign back to 2014, dutifully, sometime after the election, and certainly not before, but not too far back, if you please. Unfortunately, a slew of big biz cancellations will also need to be signed up as they are dropped in latter 2014, by the unintended consequence of odious mandate, creating yet another slew of overwhelming signups, by an irritatingly needful populace, at this point, no doubt.
So, once again, not too many, not too few, but just the right amount.
But, predictably if not unfortunately for the Democrats and Obama, few young people have actually signed up and those that did, have been ratcheted over to the Medicaid site, which means that the Obama machine must now swing into an enfilade-type of hiccup action, signing up as many younglings as possible, but not too many and certainly not too few, but just the right amount.
As a result of all this, the leftist apparatchiks over at BarackObama.com, have dutifully responded with a Thanksgiving scheme designed for parents to actually coerce young family members returning home for the Holidays, to sign up for Obamacare, by slow operation over time, of course:
It's true, ladies and Gentlemen as noted in the above talking points taken directly from Barackobama.com, but it only gets far, far, worse.
The BarackObama.com website has come out with page upon page of helpful parental rejoinders, to get those doltish parents both involved and back in charge of their younglings' health which should preclude a possible Obamacare death spiral. As a result, we decided to publish the initial list from Obama's website below, and with a little creative editing of our own, extrapolated their helpful hints out just a wee bit further, in order to provide as much information as possible, by way of explanation, to the youngsters of America. Remember too, we've just added bits and pieces here and there; however the original words from the "O-Team" largely remain:
Are your family members traveling home for the holidays? Well, if they can get past both the TSA and the no-fly list, there are a few things they’ll need in order to sign up for health coverage.
First, make sure they bring the following items with them before they head home, or we may come and find them.
In order to shop on the new health insurance marketplace, you’ll need to have a few basic pieces of information with you and gobs of disposable time. We recommend starting during the holidays, so that by the time the weekend concludes, you may actually be signed up (but we aren't promising anything, mind you):
- Your Social Security Number- Simply because, despite the fact that we know if you've been sleeping and we know if you're awake, we don't always know who's using a particular computer. Our busy little elves at the NSA simply don't have time to handle all of this stuff for us, well, at least not yet....
- Information about your employer and income— Plus, we might even be able to tell you how long your employer can expect to stay in business based on available bank account info and previous years 940 tax forms. Also, does your employer belong to the Tea Party?
- If you currently have health insurance, you’ll need your health insurance card or paperwork that includes a health policy number, some KY jelly, and a healthy supply of anti-depressants. Because that ship's fixin' to go down, and fast, especially after we get through cancelling all of the existing health plans.
Here are some common things to think about before getting started:
- Your budget: What is your budget? We have no clue about ours because we've never passed one, but you must do as we say, not as we do. How much can you afford to pay each month for health coverage? We will happily adjust your premium upwards to infinity and beyond, if you qualify, so that your budget will barely have anything left, and don't worry, remaining proceeds will be going to the Obama 22nd Amendment repeal PAC!
- Existing insurance: Is health insurance currently offered through your job? If so, not for long, you see something tells us your coverage may be ending very soon, especially in this economy. Besides, it's probably substandard coverage--especially if you have a low deductible and have to pay very little, if anything, out of pocket. Our high quailty coverage contains very high deductibles, which means that you now get to play a much more meaningful part in your very own health insurance program, plus, ours costs much, much more, which must mean ours is obviously better. Just think of ours as the anti-Cadillac plan.
- Current costs: If you do currently have coverage, what are your costs? We only ask because we like to stack the deck in our favor by verifiably charging you more than you're paying now. Surely you can understand it's for the good of the collective, and what could possibly be more important than that?
- Coverage Goals: What kind of coverage are you looking for? There are lots of options based on what you want and how much you want to pay, but you won't find them here, lol! We have four options, one of them should easily suffice, at least for our purposes.
Make sure you have a valid escape plan for when, where, and how you’ll talk to your family about health insurance and a meaningful exit strategy. Here are a few tips to help you prepare and to avoid serious injury to either yourself or family members.
Let's now take a few moments on how to tackle the common arguments offered by the more hesitant sign-ups, since we obviously can't have MSNBC talking-point teams posted in every single household:
COMMON TALKING POINTS
Misconception #1: I’m healthy, so I don’t need health insurance.
Tell them: That may be true, but accidents happen, and we all need to be prepared. But an even more effective argument might be, if they don't buy our insurance policy, that accident may happen to them a hell of a lot quicker, if you get our drift. Plus, our Health insurance provides them the security of knowing they're covered in an emergency, most especially if they get caught right smack in the middle of the upcoming food riots.
Misconception #2 : Insurance will be too expensive for me.
Tell them: There are a wide variety of plans available in the new health insurance marketplace, at least four in fact, so you can pick one that fits in with what we understand is called a budget, a mystical concept to be certain, but rumor has it that budgets do exist and many people have both seen and used them. There’s also financial assistance available based on how much your child makes; I mean, not everyone can print money at will, as odd as that might seem to some of us. Plus, almost 6 in 10 uninsured Americans may be able to get coverage for $100 a month or less, but only since most are winding up in Medicaid due to the Bush economy of five years ago, by the way.
Misconception #3: It’s too complicated.
Tell them: Once you are able to get into the site, the marketplace gives you an easy way to find plans, compare them and sign up for the one that’s right for you. The pages load so slowly, you will become intimately familiar with every single part of the plan, and then some, including exact punctuation and sentence structure. You don’t have to complete the process all in one sitting, and you can do it over the phone, online, or in person, in fact we don't actually know anyone who has managed to complete the entire process in one sitting. We recommend fasting and colon detoxification while signing up, so that the eventual hallucinations could turn your Obamacare experience into one that may last a lifetime.
Back to Grim Reality
What the political Leftists failed to understand, regarding Obamacare and a host of other damaging measures, is the simple cause and effect nature of action and reaction. But, was all of this just a simple accident borne out of extreme ignorance, or was it something else altogether?
That seems to be at least one of the major questions, at this point.
Through the President's entire first term, it was as if Obama could do no wrong, especially to the political rights' extreme chagrin, as they knew that many of these healthcare measures simply could not possibly work--conversely, now and at the genesis of Obama's second term, the man appears to be unable to do anything right, due largely to the natural reactions of his rather double-blind five year mission of transformation having meaningfully taken hold.
And people are noticing.
For example, according to a recent CNN poll as exhibited in a Reuters news story, a majority of Americans now feel that Obama simply does not have the abilities required to effectively manage the nation. Even worse, it's not just that a preponderance of Americans don't think Obama's smart enough to get the job done, but rather 53% believe that Obama's also dishonest to the point of being untrustworthy...ouch.
But, it doesn't end even there.
In fact, 56% of all Americans no longer admire President Obama, do not agree with him on important issues, and get this, 53% indicated that their President does not inspire confidence.
So, has America finally awakened, or will these same folks, who responded to the poll, lethargically wrap their insulated blankets back around them, roll over, and fall back into the uber- slumber from whence they just now, awoke?
The Obama Regime, as a result and despite the Un-President's un-apology, is now outwardly promising that everything will get better just around the next corner's corner. However inwardly, the entire political left seems to be loading up on the anti-depressants of denial, while cutting a trail away from Obamacare as fast as their stubby little feet can carry them.
But, how can a Democrat party which has based its entire raison d'etre on Obamacare, now try to divorce itself from the thing that is singularly identified as being hopelessly attached to them? I mean, for Heaven's sake, how can the president separate himself from the thing that now rather ignobly carries his name i.e. Obamacare?
Comically if not tragically, it will inevitably become worse....and across a vast array of fronts, as history never lies while oft repeating the same exact tales; the actors perpetrating the same dark comedy of history over and over, while also being the only element that changes.
But, not only that, remember, watch for the Goldilocks Archetype's appearing more and more and in a myriad of ways across numerous redistributively controlled fronts, as the socialized engineering of the political Left insinuates itself further and further within Obama's promised transformation of America.
Ergo, idyllically, in order to guarantee limited excess to the wealthy, all excess must be exponentially limited by way of guaranteed fairness and redistributed justice, for all.
The template? An even playing field of breadline-like balance, for starters, which, by slow operation, moves onward with not too many and not too much, not too fast and not too slow, not too few and not too little, but finally and utterly achieving just the right and final amount, at least by someone's measure.
"Experience hath shewn, that even under the best forms, those entrusted with power have, in time, and by slow operations, perverted it into tyranny"
November 21st, 2013
If Obamacare is a scheme designed to redistribute health to the impoverished via taxed wealth, then God help us all, if the Federal government ever figures out how to redistribute wealth to the Elite via taxed health....
By Barry Secrest
"When the bough breaks, the cradle will fall, and down will come baby, cradle and all."
The bough that is Obamacare, for all intents and purposes, has broken, and even before taking full perch, as the Left-Wing politicos now frantically scramble about trying with all of their delicate might, to somehow find enough duct tape to patch the ill-structured abomination of the President's health act back into some form of rigged functionality.
Meanwhile, the Progressives' dream of an authoritarian enforced Utopia lies reefed and threatened to be smashed on the craggy shores of reality.
Watching all of this bemusingly unfold seems to leave many Americans with an odd mixture of nausea, fear, hope, and even some shagenfrauden satisfaction, to be brutally honest. The nausea stems from the widening debris trail that Obamacare increasingly leaves within its wake, while heightened fears continue to seep into an already weary populace, each of these prefaced on the already forseen effects that a stubbornly contrived Health Act will force Americans to eventually endure.
The satisfaction comes from having foreseen and warned millions of others for almost the last half decade, as to what we might expect of this artificial blight on America's future, many of our predictions having been proven startlingly accurate all too quickly. The hope exhudes from what we all thought may have been lost but is now being refound, that being the overall contention that government, while minimally useful in general, causes far more problems than it ever solves in practice.
The Carnage Unfolds
The jaundiced eyes of traditional America, even including the Tea Party, seem to hesitantly peer away from the carnage unfolding before our very eyes, as those architects of decline, that we thought to be at least well beyond cunning, now appear to be less than simply inept. This, despite the onslaught of persecution leveled at We the Opposition, which seemed to forever find our ranks in the crosshairs.
But, rather than a pensive treatment in over-analysis of that which truly no longer deserves to be studied to the nth degree, as in the past, I am reminded of something far more elemental.
In retrospect, watching all of this unfold serves to remind us of several things learned, more often than not, as mere children.
On Needful Things
I can remember those days so vividly, when as a young boy in North Carolina, I was occasionally able to talk my mother into buying me some colorfully constructed flying toy in our frequent visits to the local Belk's department store where my grandmother worked. After having a grand time romping around the aisles and playing on the store's amazing piece of new technology known as an escalator, I would often become turned around and lost.
Bursting into tears at the appropriate moment, it was unusual that I seemed to become lost in the same exact section each time, only to be found with an endearing hug of solace by that rather fetching young brunette bathed in lavender, who more often than not worked in the bolting cloth section.
After doing everything a child could conceivably do on a strip of mechanically articulated stairs, and upon being found after that dreadful and yet remote possibility of never seeing my mother again, we then would then visit the counter at the Rexall drugstore, across the street in downtown Monroe. The strangely compelling aroma of medications, soda, tobacco smoke and ice cream all woven together was unforgettable, and not a little appealing, if not completely lost in the present day.
After some bit of unseemly gossip between my mother and Betty, the chatty soda-jerk, plus a snack from behind the counter, we would eventually make our way back to the car. Once in, the scolding would begin as I plundered through the bags hanging precariously over the front seat, looking for my new prize. Upon rediscovery, I would carefully remove the contents from the box--car jostling down the road as the seatbelt dangled unused over my right shoulder--it was always an exercise in pent up excitement.
While riding along and examining the pieces to be fitted together, I would daydream about the upcoming days of unbridled joy, watching the delicate plane soar up and away on an endless array of updrafts after launching it from the cornfield next to the woods.
Finally home, I would hustle the craft inside to construct it, while personalizing the toy in some way, making it all mine, often with some enchanting little sticker or decal plundered from around the house. Then, after receiving rejoinders from my mother on what I was not to do, which I probably did anyway, I would bolt outside, not waiting to consider the perils, run, and then fling the craft into the sky, only to watch it magnificently soar straight into the woods and lodge in some impossibly tall oak tree, dangling stubbornly in a clutch of leaves and branches.
That's not fair--only one flight, I would huff, while looking back toward the house and wondering if there might be some quick solution to the tragedy that immediately eluded me. Climbing was out of the question, the branches to the tall oak began at a height twice as tall as my dad, and I was still smarting from that back flop out of the swing from several days prior. I could only imagine trying to catch my breath from a fall from where the plane clung, almost desperately, at this point.
It might as well be on the moon....
Here, to be certain, glancing back up the now obscenely stupid plane, fun time marched on with no immediately simple solutions, and an enraged temper tantrum promised to soon follow. A thought flashed to enlist the aid of one of Mom's parakeets, who could easily fly up the tree and fetch the plane down for me; however, the bird was still not very good at communicating, at least not very well--probably wouldn't end well.
Bottle-rockets! Aimed just so, I could knock the unruly toy out of the tree, that might even be fun....Wait, no, my last encounter with bottle-rockets had left both my grandmothers and parents scattering like soldiers under fire.
I had left a bagful of the rockets on the concrete table, which contained a hole down the center from where my brother and I launched them. As the entire family sat around after supper in the brick den of a porch only a few feet away, the bag holding the rockets we were firing caught fire from the sparks, and the insanity soon began. Rockets exploded in every direction, most of them arcing straight onto the porch where everyone lounged.
None of us had ever seen grandma move that quickly before.....
I can remember giggling insanely as my dad was jumping all over the place, dodging rocket after rocket; he looked like a cricket on a hot stove. Mom was screaming like a banshee, at me, while batting them away. Pawpaw dove for cover behind a chair. It all seemed like great fun, at least until all eyes zeroed in on me, shrouded in bottle rocket smoke, which by now coated the patio like fog. I sat on my knees underneath the table, safely watching all the fun from rocket command central, I imagined.
Nah, kill the bottle-rocket idea.....
Despite the puny efforts from an occasional puff of wind, the now dumb tree branch stubbornly clung to the glider as if almost jealous to keep the blasted thing. But, not to be so easily defeated, a failsafe idea occurred and it seemed to be the only solution short of waiting on my beloved big brother, from whom a bad fight could erupt at any moment--especially if he was in one of his sourly red-headed moods, again.
But the one single idea grew and finally took root, and it would soon become the mother of all forest floor cannonades.
Rocks, baseballs, softballs, and even basketballs and certain other unmentionables from my Dad's tool shed, would be soon careening up from the forest floor in a bold effort to dislodge the envious tree's quarry, as Charlie our big black lab, bewilderingly danced around the bombs, probably wondering what he had done. Eventually, a missile launched out of increasingly frustrated fury would finally find its mark, and the glider finally twirled to the ground like a crippled bird with a lusty crow of victory from its liberating young sniper.
Exalting, I would then hop through the woods over a forest floor now littered with garden implements, hammers, handled tools, and even wrenches, including our entire stock of residentially spherical entertainments, up to and even including badminton rackets and skeets.
I would rush to pick up the prize, now ready again to live out the day dreams borne only a few hours earlier during the ride home.
Alas, as the story often went, I would find that my haste to dislodge the thing and free it for my purpose turned out to be the very thing that caused its ultimate destruction, with a broken wing rendering it next to useless.
Even then, tender experience knew that, although repaired, the construct would never be able to fly in any true semblance again, at least not as when first dreamt right out of the box.
And, so it is with Obamacare....
November 14th, 2013
Conservative Refocus Retrospective
By Barry Secrest
Originally published on 8/28/09
The questions being asked by the Media in this MIASMA of often conflicting information seem to commonly revert to what appears to be "Liberal talking points.”
One has to wonder if what the press accused the Bush Administration of doing is actually being done unabashedly by this White House in sending out to the "Axis Networks” specific agenda items which need to be focused on and massaged into "Holographic Being.”
Over this entire period and with regard to the Healthscare debate- the Statists' constant overall agenda seems to be continually focusing on convincing "We the People" that our medical care (i.e. doctors and hospitals and the like) is not as good as the world seems to think that it is.
We have read story after story trying to convince us in editorial form and otherwise that We do not have it as good as We think we do when it comes to quality. One can only thank the Star-Spangled Press for delivering this "excellent" if not subjective "news" whilst We are all currently dealing with an America which has had nothing but bad news followed by worse over the last 12 months. An individual need not look far when trying to comprehend what is going on.
How bad it really is?
Chiefly, the story which had been designed to sink us further into suicidal depression revolved around a United Nations report that The United States ranks 35th in the world when it comes to our actual health care quality, using their own equally applied rating system. Accompanying this revelation is our conflicting findings that the average American’s Life Expectancy has now been increased to 78 Years old. Interestingly, in looking at population samples with regard to this report, some very compelling facts come to mind. When Average Life Expectancy is ranked by population size, which seems to make a lot more of an "actuarial sense" on a host of illustrative fronts, the following facts come into focus:
Comparison in Healthcare Quality of the Top (5) Most Populated Countries
Total Population Rank
The United States
**Date sources: Cia Factbook 2009; 2009 United Nations Healthcare Census
As one can see, The United States ranks Head and Shoulders above any comparatively ranked population size with regard to healthcare quality. This data was quite surprising when the urge came over us to look at Health care Quality from an actuarial sense. It would appear that in all of this Data one fact becomes apparent. The larger the population size is- within a given country - the more the "Law of Decreasing Returns" applies.
There were several other fascinating things that came both to mind and into stark analysis when reviewing this data. The most amusing was the fact that the European Union, which seems to me to be the "Ideal Model" for our Social Media's self-esteem problems, scores below the United States in overall rankings, although their population is higher. This appears to score an overall point in the analysis' favor when looking at our argument "holistically."
The other point which "glares" to this individual is the relatively small population slice of the United Kingdom in comparison to these other countries when noting the almost negligible increase in Life Expectancy over the United States. We all have heard of the problems with their system, but it only serves a population of 51 million. The US is (6) times larger than Great Britain for Heaven's sake. Canada's population is even less at roughly 33 million but they have no problems---right?
It is indeed amazing how the press will throw out numbers, and we all must then "bow down" without applying any logical principles to the data we are being given. There are some whom might argue that the Healthcare comparison to the Top five Countries is unfair due to the fact that, Industrially speaking ,the US is far ahead of it's Population counterparts. To these people We would rebut that this simply speaks to the exceptionalism of America and it's "Capitalist System."
I hope that at least some few will look at this analysis and come away with the knowledge that simple data is not enough. The data needs to be couched in a commonsensical progression in order to be able to actually see what is happening. I will leave it to the Pros or the Pundits to argue the merit of all of this,however, this particular data seems to be in absence within the continuing debate.
"Trust but verify" seems not to be enough these days, does it?
With regard to the ongoing contentious battle over Healthcare and the efforts by the opposing political factions to either illegitimately control it or to allow "the remaining non-social" (natural marketplace forces) to determine the "authentic direction" of medicine's flow--we thought it might prove interesting to look at a number of facts that seem to be missing in the debate.
On its own, the debut Conservative Refocus article ,"Mainstream Media's Holographic Reality," has generated a readership of nearly staggering proportions. We have been amazed--not only by the interest generated but also by what the information covered in the article implies (which is in direct contradiction to both our Fearless Leaders in the Government and our Media--such as it is).
The initial report, as detailed below, shows how far ahead the US is with regard to Healthcare Quality in comparison to any other population of similar size:
Somewhat surprising, wouldn't you say? So it's not as bad as one might have been led to believe by both the Government and the Mainstream Media; in fact, it is quite the opposite.
In addition to the facts we initially uncovered, there are a few other interesting data comparisons that the Socialist Eggheads just seem to "simply overlook"--most likely due to the fact that the truth tends to massively foul-up their arguments in support of government-controlled Healthcare.
The first element of our comparison should, of course, initially setup the scale in which we are observing all of the data. So let's look at what our total respective Healthcare Comparison Economies produce while we are all "still" Capitalists:
Did you notice? It's enough to make even the most ardent Capitalist blush with regard to those stunning comparative numbers. But those US numbers appear to be dropping fast--just to be fair and to make all the Socialists and left-wingers feel better...(Gee...wonder why?)
Okay, so I know what you're wondering, and here is the answer to your naturally competitive/inquisitive mind outside of the medical system comparison:
When the Government and the Media keep insisting on how horrible our Country is and how we squander the world's resources, they invariably seem to leave out just how productive "We the People"--living in our Free Market Economy--are and that we are producing a better-than-substantial proportion of the world's economy.
Now, since that's been settled, let's look at how much we spend per person on our Healthcare coverage, as well as our per capita income:
It would seem that--with higher life expectancies and world best-of-class Healthcare--an individual's costs within the higher paradigm of per capita income should logically be a bit higher since the individual is in control of their own Healthcare. In addition, our system pays what could be considered a very comfortable living to some of the best and the brightest in the world, and by doing so attracts a great many doctors from all over the planet.
This can be attested to by the number of foreign doctors who have migrated to the US in order to seek a higher income and better lives. You know,the fabulous doctors that we all run into in our daily lives who are still a bit sketchy on their command of the English language. I expect--with the rationing which is involved with any Government healthplan--the number and quality of our doctors would most likely decline over time; this would also incur the byproduct of "waiting periods" for necessary but non-emergency care.
Now, let's look at total number of all Physicians and Healthcare Providers--including Dentistry--a valid inclusion (I should point out that Dental speaks to overall Healthcare quality far more than the Eggheads might suggest)--ask any Cardiologist:
Now these are simply staggering comparative numbers when you consider that we are comparing our many and varied available facilities and personnel to countries that have populations easily (3) or even (4) times the size of our population. This particular comparison simply begs the question: "Why does a competitive marketplace medical system absolutely dwarf socialized medical countries with regard to the available number of facilities and personnel?" Once again: Government care must naturally involve rationing in order to control costs.
Next we look at the number of hospital beds per capita, because this speaks to patient availability within a given country:
There is one particular wildcard when one looks at the number of hospital beds, and it is in regard to Outpatient Surgery Centers.
The fact is simply that the US has progressed so far within the medical arts that doctors here can perform far fewer invasive surgical procedures, thereby far lessening the negative effects on patients. Now a particular procedure in the US can be completed and the patient sent on their way in (3) hours--which when done 10 years ago might have required a three day bed stay. Thus this would equate a need for far fewer hospital beds.
Outpatient Centers currently number approximately 5,000 spread throughout the US and are rapidly increasing as a measure to control costs as well as to serve patients more readily. This type of center was started in the US back in the 70's and is now catching on in other countries. With Free Market principles in place, new types of treatments in the art of medicine continue to rapidly increase. But with socialized medicine, we can say goodbye to rapid innovations--which are initially too costly and offer no profit incentive.
Finally, as we all can see, the US is like an oasis within a desert when compared to other countries that have socialized medicine. Our quick study did not even look into the sterling cleanliness of most US facilites, nor did it look at treatment mortality rates--perhaps fodder for another in-depth look at the US' medical system in comparison to others.
The Final Budgetary Solution (until thats gone too)?
One final point that I find interesting, if not perplexing, is the ratio differences when we compare the Canadian system with the US system. Many have asked the question (including me) why are the Liberal Democrats and President so insistent on taking over the system aside from the obvious answers indicated in our previous work? If one notices the total per capita income of the US as opposed to the total per capita income of Canada--and then subtracts the amount that we spend on OUR medical treatments--we find that the per capita income becomes nearly equal. Then, when we look at the total amount the Canadian government spends on its citizens' medical care, which is about half of what Americans spend, the possible answer to this question becomes clearer.
The total Canadian expenditure for Healthcare is approximately $3,000 per capita per year, as opposed to the United States, which spends approximately $6,000 per capita per year. When one looks at the US' total budgetary income for 2009 the total is $2.1 Trillion. While the latest figures available show the total expenditure in the US for Healthcare is approximately $2.3 Trillion per year. If the US Government could hypothetically gain control over Healthcare and then essentially halve the amount that it pays on Healthcare--as in Canada--the Government then could have an extra $1 Trillion to put towards wealth redistribution and/or whatever else it desires, including shortfalls. This would assume that we would all be paying into the government essentially what we pay into our entire Healthcare system (and the like) currently.
In Benjamin Franklin's day, as the Minister Plenipotentiary for the American Revolutionary Government, Franklin's chief job was to facilitate diplomacy with regard to the French, but, in particular his focus was the procuring of loans from the French Government in order to finance America's war effort against the British. A fact that is often lost in the history books is simply that-- without the French's help--our independence may have never actually happened. Historically speaking --D-day, then was in essence figurative payback.
Must Be Something in the Water Up There....
The problem--in our current context--was simply as follows: Even in Franklin's day, the Continental Congress of the existing body of states was so ravenous in its incessant spending that Franklin actually became embarrassed at his having to beg the French for more war funds on behalf of his country on a wearily continuous basis. If not for his singular celebrity-like popularity with the French peoples, he might not have been able to obtain the funds at all.
On this basis, one must suppose, whatever is in the water of the Potomac has most obviously been there for at least 250 years, for Heaven's sake.
Always follow the money.....especially when Congress is involved. We are all aware of the studies that have come out indicating that the US pays far too much for its Healthcare.
Has anyone considered the possibility that perhaps all the other socialized medicine countries are paying too little?
*All statistics presented were gathered from The World Health Organization, Nationmaster.com, CIA Factbook, United Nations 2009 Census, and The CBO. Historical excerpts are from the book The Americanization of Benjamin Franklin.
November 6th, 2013
"It's a known fact, at least to the ever clueless Left defending Obamacare, that what insurance companies have apparently always wanted to do is to both cancel and rid themselves of most if not all of their paying customers--obviously so that they might stop paying taxes--but also so that they will no longer have to stay in business, which will, therefore, allow them to keep all of that money....which.... they will no longer be making."
"They're on to us folks...."
In July of 2010, the Obamacare rules and regulations, as promulgated by the US Government, were painstakingly updated to include one very key piece of information, which proves beyond a shadow of doubt that the President and other members of the US government lied and did so repeatedly with regard to the Affordable Care Act.
According to an NBC News story, the added information included this smoking gun:
"Buried in Obamacare regulations from July 2010 is an estimate that because of normal turnover in the individual insurance market, “40 to 67 percent” of customers will not be able to keep their policy. And because many policies will have been changed since the key date, “the percentage of individual market policies losing grandfather status in a given year exceeds the 40 to 67 percent range.”
That means the administration knew that more than 40 to 67 percent of those in the individual market would not be able to keep their plans, even if they liked them."
Unfortunately for the White House, recent accounts indicate that the folly of Obamacare was known far earlier than the above citation. In fact, shortly after Obamacare was passed, Harvard economics professor and consultant David Cutler warned the Regime of his concerns for the law's implementation, as relayed from the following Washington Post article:
In May 2010, two months after the Affordable Care Act squeaked through Congress, President Obama’s top economic aides were getting worried. Larry Summers, director of the White House’s National Economic Council, and Peter Orszag, head of the Office of Management and Budget, had just received a pointed four-page memo from a trusted outside health adviser. It warned that no one in the administration was “up to the task” of overseeing the construction of an insurance exchange and other intricacies of translating the 2,000-page statute into reality.
So, there you have it, but the plot only thickens at this point, because the end game is most obviously in site, at least for the Obama Regime. Indeed, the President's imperative, as promulgated all along, was to eventually force America into a single-payer health system, as Hillary Clinton and the Clinton Administration earnestly tried during the Clinton years.
Step One: Paving The Way
First, it was essential for Obama to create an urgent political need to get public opinion flowing against America's formerly private healthcare system, which by the way, was the best in the world prior to 2011. Certainly, the task would be fairly easy since the overall Leftist media both inserted and controlled the conversation from the start. 2009, in fact, saw an avalanche of news article after news article oddly flooding the media, as if concerted by some phantom maestro in an effort to flow public affectation against private healthcare.
WHO Chart showing medical service providers in US as of 2010: Note the miniscule number of providers in both China and India, which make up over half the world's population in billions, as compared to America's 310 million individuals.
For instance, in 2009 we could find chief-apparatchik Paul Krugman, a Left-Wing principality of the New York Times, leading the journalistic fight for state-run Healthcare and against private healthcare in one of his many Leftist pieces titled "The Politics of Spite":
"The same principle of spite has determined Republican positions on more serious matters, with potentially serious consequences — in particular, in the debate over health care reform."
"The Republican campaign against health care reform has shown no such consistency. For the main G.O.P. line of attack is the claim — based mainly on lies about death panels and so on — that reform will undermine Medicare."
Medicare was, by the way, eventually forced to give up over $ 700 Billion of funding in favor of the Affordable Care Act as set by Obama, himself. But also within the same newspaper and appearing on the same day, was "Left-Wing Boy-Wonder" Nick Kristoff who thoughtfully included this rather prophetic attempt to knock down and drag-out America's private healthcare system, as indicated by his closing argument for a healthcare transformation:
"I can only Hope that the Legislators find it in their hearts to overhaul an existing insurance system that is the disgrace of the industrialized world"
In fact, newspaper articles were flooding the media from sea to shining sea in an effort to build support against our then present-day free market-based system. The effort from the Left as required by the Regime would eventually find success.
Step one would finally be completed on October 1st, 2013, with the Obamacare rollout to unquestionably disastrous results, as only six individuals Nationwide would actually be signed up on the first day, and in a nation of well over 300 million people.
Step Two: Riding Out The Storm
As the rollout proceeds, the Obamacare regulations will essentially act as an ever-tightening noose on private health insurance carriers. Individual insurance markets will be forced to continually slake customer after customer. Despite the artificed fanfare from Obama, which few if any paid attention to back in 2010, the grandfathered policies will never be able to continually survive the stringent standards required of compliance laws for very long. Regulatory compatibility will become more and more difficult. As the overall stable of customers are slowly depleted, specific plans will be left at an actuarial risk, thereby depleting carrier claims reserves and causing plan termination letters to eventually flow out.
While many insurance carriers lined up in support at first, as recruited by the Obama Regime, thousands of pages of regulations have been written since that time, and at the Secretary's discretion, but only as directed by the White House.
As time moves inevitably forward, private plans will also suffer from little-known but severe profit limitations as imposed by the Affordable Care Act. Beginning in 2011, one of the first rules of the Affordable Health Act mandated that companies would be required to pay no less than 80% of premium income on medical care for policy holders. In other words, no matter how precise actuarial underwriting efforts might be, plans which were designed to bolster healthy individual enrollment while also allowing starkly less in premiums, would no longer matter.
Profit will now be severely limited.
If a company fails to hit its mandated target of 80% of each premium dollar taken in to be applied towards medical care, the underwriting gain will have to be forfeited back to the policy holders by way of an annual refund. This, in essence, would mean that all administrative costs must be held to no more than 20% of every premium dollar. A difficult proposition at best for companies looking to control fraud or expand into both better plan designs and improving overall efficiencies.
According to a 2012 Fox News story, these limitations on profit, despite being an obvious Marxist construct, could cause more companies to either go out of business or drop specific plans, as is happening even now:
"This puts tremendous pressure on companies," Robert Zirkelbach, spokesman with America's Health Insurance Plans, told FoxNews.com. Foremost, they say the sudden implementation could force some health plans out of the market. Zirkelbach said the new rules could also force insurers to cut down on fraud prevention activities and prevent them investing money in innovation. "Capping what health plans can invest in those activities and to pioneer new initiatives is only going to make it harder for those new types of programs and services ... to come online," he said.
So, with subsidized government forces increasingly aligning themselves against the private market, the shrinking health insurance industry will see more and more carriers forced out of business, which is exactly where the next step comes into play.
Step 3: A Dangerous Deception
There were approximately 806 Health Insurance companies of all types in the US, in 2013. However, over the prior decade, that number was considerably larger, almost double in fact. But as Obamacare continues to take over insurance, that number will shrink considerably. While over 1/6th of the entire US economy is made up of the healthcare industry, that same industry was formerly funded in large part by private and or employer sponsored insurance carriers. Now, about 93 million individuals are covered under the US government's medicare and medicaid programs. The latest data conversely indicates that only about 15 million Americans are presently insured under private insurance health plans with the remainder of the health insurance carrying population being covered by employer sponsored plans, that number approaching roughly 145 million.
The actual problem of sharply increasing premiums began within the insurance industry back in the late 1960's, after Lyndon Johnson's "Great Society" initiative placed the government in the position of eventually dictating fee for service levels which would, overtime, prove to be an industry-wide problem. Private insurance carriers would pick up the shortage in costs gaps associated with lower than nominal costs paid by the government. As the federal and State mandated programs grew, the government became the single largest US insurance carrier of all.
The short answer with regard to spiraling costs being, in effect, that an 800 lb. gorilla pays what it wants pretty much when it wants, with no effective recourse for any meaningful complaints.
As the government's role continually grew, more and more Doctors and providers were forced to opt out of the government's network, to the point that in the present day, many individuals have difficulty finding doctors who will even take on more federally funded patients. This is due simply to the fact that doctors can only see a certain percentage of Medicaid and Medicare patients before the level of reimbursement becomes highly unprofitable, ergo, the private market surges to the rescue for remaining private market patients. On the flip-side, the shortfall in payments by the government forces the private market and its insurance providers to pick up more and more of the costs, creating a death spiral of premium increases while the number of available doctors continues to dwindle.
In fact, a large proportion of medical inflation is based on the fact that the government often severely underfunds most given procedures. So while the political left insistently snipes at insurance carriers, almost as a hobby, the root of the problem lies within the Federal Government's insertion into the market well over a generation hence.
So, while Obama's two main promises centered on reducing health insurance costs while increasing the number of insured individuals, the fact that extreme government meddling will produce only worse results is only now being found out by the citizenry at large, as in the October 1st health Act rollout. Indeed, more people will stand to lose coverage than will gain it which is the grandest irony of all. However, the upcoming fix that Obama has promised will certainly only make things worse, noting the fact that according to the Washington Post, 9 out of 10 Obamacare enrollments have been redirected into Medicaid, rather than written through Obamacare, which brings us to the next step.
Step 4: Unintended Consequences?
As more and more individuals are signed up into Medicaid as a result of the healthcare.gov website redirection, the required number of enrollments making Obamacare actually function will simply not be enough unless drastic changes are made.
Obamacare will need at least 39,000 enrollees per month in order to perform nominally, as planned. However, since the 10/1/13 rollout, only a comparative handful have actually signed up for Obamacare, while Medicaid enrollment has proven to be an outrageous and yet dubious success. Many of these enrollments may have even transitioned from private insurance, regardless, the current profusion of Medicaid enrollees will massively blow up both federal and state outlays for what is essentially free medical coverage, and quite comprehensive at that, while private market enrollments will increase only slightly, at best.
But, while Medicaid offers first dollar coverage, essentially for free, private health insurance, Obamacare will require excessively high deductibles and phenomenal out of pocket costs simply to keep premiums outside of the "insanity range." The ironic part of this particular issue is the fact that the middle class taxpayers, who're paying out hefty taxes to support Medicaid, are the same individuals being crucified by the Obama Regime in the premium amounts needed to support the act's mandated coverages. Being considered poor, at least by government standards, will allow many people to have far, far, superior coverage to those who both pay for their own coverage while also paying for the poor's coverage, a thing that only a Marxist might find justice in.
But, then despite the coverage superiority, there is also a decaying quality of care issue associated with medicaid, which will only get worse as roles are expanded by government.
These upcoming conditions, as enumerated, rather easily explain why the President inexplicably sought to delay the mandate for employers, which will in 2014 create a tsunami of even greater consequences, while placing an immeasurable strain on employers, health insurance carriers, citizens and even the government itself.
Step 5: Top Down Bottom Up Inside out
But as the program stumbles forward, many individuals who find Obamacare simply unaffordable will most likely opt out of both Obamacare and any meaningful private health insurance coverage, and in complete if not abject disgust, and pay the fine. While before , these individuals were able to easily, if not ironically, afford coverage, now they simply cannot and as a direct result of Obamacare.
As insurance companies find it harder and harder to function within the hostile regulatory atmosphere, healthcare providers will also suffer increasingly if not by magnitude. Individuals will be forced to forego various procedures as many providers will require deductibles to be paid up front. Unfortunately also, the Obamacare enrollees will have another even newer problem. Many top hospitals, providers, and specialists and even doctors have already indicated that they will not be opting into the Obamacare networks due to insufficient reimbursements within the Healthcare Act's payment directives.
This will mean that many enrollees may either unenroll themselves or sign themselves up with a private insurance market, which does have the necessary network, assuming one's available, and in many cases one simply will not be. However, this will further strain private markets, which will be forced to enroll individuals with pre-existing conditions causing rates to move up even higher.
As these rates move up incrementally, many of the healthier individuals will be unable to afford them, prompting these to enroll either in Obamacare or Medicaid.
Some families will actually begin forfeiting income in order to qualify for Medicaid, while others will find ways to work the system for free coverage.
As this trend continues, the smaller private insurance carriers will continue to consolidate and merge. Eventually there would be very few carriers left and those would be the largest, however, even these carriers would continue to suffer while the healthcare providers will also merge and become larger.
If Obamacare is allowed to continue, eventually the entire system would be measured by only a few gigantic entities with a veritable army of specialized lobbyists and extreme amounts of rationing since the number of providers will be abnormally restricted. As written earlier, clinics and smaller hospitals will begin to suffer, as various lesser insurance carriers and medical vendors begin either opting out or selling out of their traditional roles within the healthcare system, itself.
Step Six: The Final Outcome
Rural medical care will also begin to suffer, as the rates being charged to lesser populated regions begin to overwhelm Obamacare's less affluent victims.
Job losses will soar, even as Medicaid roles are expanded, leaving fewer and fewer victims for Obamacare to advantage, while also forcing states to raise taxes to cover ever-increasing social funding outlays.
Seniors, who have seen their Medicare premiums increase expansively, will find making ends meet harder and harder, forcing many into poverty-like conditions, while others will be unable to gain medical care for life-threatening conditions, formerly repairable, under prior government healthcare.
Prescription costs, for those at higher risks, will be unaffordable, which will then put pressure on big pharma to maintain profits, thereby forcing even more costs onto remaining private insurers, which will still cover certain prescriptions.
Eventually, the entire system will substantially erode and begin to collapse, as the government will be forced to take over various clinics and hospitals within regions of starkly depressed economic conditions.
Corporations will be forced to slake both employees and healthcare plans as available receipts worsen. Individual disposable income will drop due to the increased amount of premiums being paid into a waning healthcare system. This will put pressure on virtually every sector of the economy. Taxes will need to be raised to support a system, which was fully independent only several years prior, while rationing will eventually become the rule rather than the exception, as intervals of required care will widen out significantly.
Finally, the government will act to save the system it initially sought to fix and thereby ruined with one fell swoop of legislation. America will become engrossed within a medical labryinth of unimaginable expense and unparalleled bureacratic complexity.
All of this because one single man and one particular party set out to force insurance on 3o million people, who probably didn't want it anyway, and to reportedly save $2,500 per year for families. Nevermind the 15 million who will soon lose coverage and are apparently considered expendable by the White House. But as politics comes into play regarding how to correct this undeniable debacle of deception, many within both parties have indicated a desire to actually sew the Frankenstein monster of Obamacare back together and try to improve it, and yet no matter what government does, it will still remain a slowly moving but still terrifying monster.
Going forward, the only credible answer will have to be one of "Full Repeal or No Deal," and once the blasted thing is dead and buried, government can specifically address the real problem areas, rather than trying to create yet another government leviathan of impending failure, if not doom. The only practical way to achieve this outcome is a simple push of the reset button, all the way back to the day before the law was passed--as if it never truly happened.
Regardless of the final outcome, perhaps now, some few Americans will finally understand why the Tea Party and the Conservatives, increasingly hated by the President and his Progressive Decepticons, fought so terribly hard and long to rid America of this fraudulently induced plague of collectivist impracticality.
It's simply because we were right, we knew we were right, and soon everyone else will know it, too....unfortunately.
Barack Obama Then:
“If you like your doctor, you will be able to keep your doctor. Period. If you like your health care plan, you will be able to keep your health care plan. Period. No one will take it away. No matter what.”~Barack Obama, on 6/15/2009, 2010, 2011 and 2012
Barack Obama Now:
Now, if you have or had one of these plans before the Affordable Care Act came into law and you really liked that plan, what we said was you can keep it if it hasn’t changed since the law passed. ~Barack Obama, 11/4/13
Barry Secrest is an author, political commentator, and multiple business owner of over 20 years, and has been a health & property & casualty insurance specialist and risk manager for over 26 years.