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SO how's Health Care Going?

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JenniferMaxwell
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75 posted 02-22-2010 08:35 PM       View Profile for JenniferMaxwell   Email JenniferMaxwell   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for JenniferMaxwell

Just curious, Balladeer, did you actually read the entire article by Atul Gawande you’ve quoted from in the post above? If you haven’t, perhaps you should.
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76 posted 02-22-2010 09:04 PM       View Profile for Balladeer   Email Balladeer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Balladeer's Home Page   View IP for Balladeer

yes, I read it.

Just curious...did you read the politifact truth-o-meter link?

I know that politifact is regarded highly here.
JenniferMaxwell
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77 posted 02-22-2010 09:36 PM       View Profile for JenniferMaxwell   Email JenniferMaxwell   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for JenniferMaxwell

Yes I did, Balladeer. I love the pants on fire parts of the truth-o-meter that exposes how right wing pundits, Limbaugh and Fox “entertainers” like Beck and have made up so much stuff re HCR.
http://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/st atements/2010/jan/28/nancy-pfotenhauer/health-care-reform-does-not-increase-premiums-and-/
http://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/statement s/2009/nov/12/glenn-beck/glenn-beck-claims-health-care-bill-includes-insura/
http://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/statements/2009/aug/10 /sarah-palin/sarah-palin-barack-obama-death-panel/
http://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/sta tements/2009/nov/03/michele-bachmann/michele-bachmann-claims-page-92-prohibits-private-/
http://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/statement s/2009/jul/29/glenn-beck/glenn-beck-claims-science-czar-john-holdren-propos/


Anyway, nite, nite. Good to know you're ok.
JenniferMaxwell
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78 posted 02-23-2010 06:33 AM       View Profile for JenniferMaxwell   Email JenniferMaxwell   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for JenniferMaxwell

Obama lays cards on table. Where’s the GOP health bid?

His plan is as easy to pick on as its precursors were. (What change of this scale isn't?) But strip away all the Washington ax grinding and ideological infighting, and the plan can be put to a very simple test: Would it produce a health care system better than today's — one that would leave people confident that they could get high-quality care at a reasonable price? The answer is yes.

In a nation where 46 million people lack health insurance, Obama's proposal would eventually cover more than 30 million. It would provide subsidies to help lower-income people buy policies. And it would eliminate an array of noxious insurance company practices, such as denying coverage to people with pre-existing medical conditions.

Like other plans on the left and right, the biggest weakness in Obama's is that it falls short in curbing the medical inflation that threatens to send premiums and the federal deficit soaring. It's disappointing that the president further weakened the "Cadillac" tax on expensive health insurance plans, one of the most important ways to discourage overuse of medical care — and cut costs.

The larger picture, though, is that his plan would improve the lives of tens of millions of people without increasing the budget deficit. Republicans, by tossing bombs while refusing to negotiate, effectively stand for the unacceptable status quo, which is doubly troubling because individual Republicans have good ideas. Obama has adopted some, notably ones aimed at reducing Medicare and Medicaid fraud. He should take more, such as malpractice reform to reduce costly "defensive medicine." But responding to Obama's plan Monday, Republicans pretty much stuck with their drumbeat of demonization and obstruction, which has proved politically profitable.

Key Republicans have dropped their support for fixes they once supported, such as curbing Medicare spending and requiring everyone to have medical insurance as a matter of personal responsibility. And the only coherent alternative the GOP has collectively produced would barely cover an extra 3 million people out of 46 million uninsured, according to the Congressional Budget Office, at least 27 million fewer than the Democrats' bills.
http://blogs.usatoday.com/oped/2010/02/debate-on-medical-overhaul-our-view-obama-lays-cards-on-table-wheres-the-gop-health-bid-.html#more

[This message has been edited by JenniferMaxwell (02-23-2010 08:09 AM).]

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79 posted 02-23-2010 07:48 AM       View Profile for Balladeer   Email Balladeer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Balladeer's Home Page   View IP for Balladeer

Check your link, Jennifer.
JenniferMaxwell
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80 posted 02-23-2010 08:10 AM       View Profile for JenniferMaxwell   Email JenniferMaxwell   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for JenniferMaxwell

Thanks Balladeer, I fixed it.
threadbear
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81 posted 02-23-2010 08:38 AM       View Profile for threadbear   Email threadbear   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for threadbear

I would love to see an Autism Wellness bill passed that would help diffuse costs to families.  75%of all parents with autistic children, divorce.  Most of the ones I know also went bankrupt trying to provide special care and education to the child.
- provision 1: research money
1 out of every 100 children now have autism.
The statistic used to be 1 out of every 750.
- Provision 2: early diagnosis fast tracks
- Provision 3: pay for percentage of care for autistic families
- Provision 4: pay for reimbursement for skyrocketing one-on-one aututism education costs
Bob K
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82 posted 02-23-2010 01:05 PM       View Profile for Bob K   Email Bob K   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Bob K



     In response to some of Mike's comments I offer a few interesting links. Here they are.

     In looking at Mike's stuff, and then at the supporting material that emerged in Google, I noticed: 1) that there was a lot of it from a fairly wide range of places; and 2) all those sources seemed to say a remarkably narrow range of things in remarkably similar language, and that all of it seemed to be released within a fairly narrow time frame.  This looked like it might be a PR  flood.  I looked for some other information that seemed solid and reliable and  offered a different perspective.

     I found this article from testimony in front of congress by an ex-insurance company executive (Cigna) who addresses some of the stuff that's in contention:

http://www.pbs.org/moyers/journal/07102009/potter_testimony.html

I thin noticed that the business about the 2.2% profit margin seemed a bit rigid, especially since it was the same (and I assume correct) number being offered over and over but without any sort of structure or explanation around it, as though the mere mention of the phrase "profit margin" ought to be magic and explain everything when, of course, it doesn't.  Especially during a recession.  The inevitable comparison with the profit margin for soft drinks (25%) is offered as though that should settle matters forever, when of course it doesn't.  If the insurance companies thought that this were the case, they'd be in the soft drink business, wouldn't they?  I mean, really, folks, are we supposed to have checked our brains at the door?  The Denver post offers some basic comments about that, in an article I quote, below.

http://www.denverpost.com/ci_14386704?source=bb


     And here's a more complete look at the picture from  another source.  The folks doing the analysis are Liberal, but you can strain out the bias when you check out the facts, which seem to be from neutral sources, including filings from the insurance companies themselves required by law.  

http://hcfan.3cdn.net/a9ce29d3038ef8a1e1_dhm6b9q0l.pdf

     Should the possible bias above feel bothersome, or should you feel distrustful of how well the facts have been disentangled, the Wall Street Journal, below, has done a sector analysis of the thing below.  They remind us that the problem is not simply an insurance problem, but a health care sector problem, and that it needs to be addressed that way.

     I for one was surprised to see the comment in the Wall Street Journal.

     They also mentioned, in passing, that the Health insurance folks have managed to triple their growth recently; despite what they say about their 2.2% profit margin, The Journal was quite pleased with them.

     All in all, it would appear that the picture that Mike has been painting is somewhat a PR picture to counter the negatives that The Health Insurance folks have been getting recently.  Even some of the Health Insurance complaints about loss of business in California seems to have been a bit of a red herring.  The business that the Health Insurance sheds seems to end up making them money in savings of money that they would have to shell out in payments.

     Also it seems that their notion of 2.2% doesn't take increased administrative costs and salaries into account.  I do not know, but I would suspect that bonuses and merit raises would well come under one of the other of those categories, though perhaps others might disagree.  One might only wonder how high the profits, which ran over 12 billion dollars for the five companies under consideration just last year, would have run.  And this is during a very serious recession with many people out of work and with major expenses for lobbying and politicking doubtless to be paid, not to mention advertising expenses as well.  Take your own stab at a more realistic figure.

http://www.marketwatch.com/story/health-care-ends-bonanza-decade-on-bright-note-2009-11-19
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83 posted 02-23-2010 01:16 PM       View Profile for Balladeer   Email Balladeer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Balladeer's Home Page   View IP for Balladeer

They remind us that the problem is not simply an insurance problem, but a health care sector problem, and that it needs to be addressed that way.

     I for one was surprised to see the comment in the Wall Street Journal.


But, Bob, that is the point. it is NOT simply an insurance problem. There are many areas that contribute to the problem. Listening to Obama, however, it is the insurance company that has three heads and a pointy tail. They are the ones taking the barbs, the accusations and the fault of the fall of the health care system. Obama has selected them to  be his target and rallying cry to the troops. Have you heard anything nearly as negative said about the  hospitals, the doctors, the pharmaceutical companies, the lawyers or any other facet of the industry? Me, neither. You are surprised that the Wall Street Journal would state that it is not simply an insurance problem? I would be surprised if they said anything else.
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84 posted 02-23-2010 02:44 PM       View Profile for Huan Yi   Email Huan Yi   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Huan Yi

.


George Will has recently made the point
that if you took all the profits from all
the applicable insurance companies it would
amount to about two days of the nation's health care.

http://www2.nationalreview.com/video/video_homie_022210_A.html


Also insurance companies being public are
not only audited but subject to a number
of reviews so the percentage profit number
is probably accurate.


.
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85 posted 02-23-2010 06:54 PM       View Profile for Bob K   Email Bob K   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Bob K



     If you'll check my post, John, I'm not raising a fuss about the accuracy 2.2% figure.  It is, however, somewhat misleading.  It is a profit taken in the depths of the second  recession that folks — and especially the Republicans at this point, lest you forget that point — are touting as a really terrible recession when profit margins are generally supposed to be at all time lows.  That Profit margin according to the Wall Street Journal has tripled in recent years.  And we are not talking about return on investments, were 2.2% would, indeed be low, but a 2.2% profit margin.  That means NET.

     One of the points I was making earlier was that the profit margin of 2.2% takes no account of increased of unspecified amounts in "administrative costs" or of "salaries," nor does it specify where those expenses went.

     Being a neo-Californian, just getting used to life in LA, I have only recently become aware of the vital differences between Gross and Net in some businesses.  Out here, in the movie business, it is apparently the case that if you wish to get paid, and well paid, your contract is for a percentage of the gross, which is guarded like access to Fort Knox.  The foolish or the unwary are often fobbed off with promises of a percentage of the Net.  Accounting being what it is, very very few movies, not matter how profitable, actually manage to make a Net Profit.  They are structured that way from the beginning to avoid having to pay very much tax.  An actual Loss may be preferable, if it can be managed, while all the actual major investors will frequently get paid from the Gross.  

     Even so, a lot of movies will lose money in real terms.  It is a chancy business.  But there can be a great deal of money made that never shows up as part of the Net.

     But perhaps the accountants in the insurance industry are very stupid and don't understand how to do these things.  Perhaps the people in the insurance industry don't get bonuses.  Or if they get bonuses, the bonuses they get are all part of the net profits that show up on the books.  I'm utterly convinced by that, as John is surely completely convinced by that and as Mike is utterly and completely convinced by that.  

     After all the news stories released by this latest wave of insurance company informational PR make no mention of anything like that, and they would surely mention something like that, wouldn't they?
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86 posted 02-23-2010 08:35 PM       View Profile for Bob K   Email Bob K   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Bob K




     One would note here that the 2.9 Billion dollar profit claimed by Blue Shield of California here is reported with a bit more detail in this interesting report as THE FOURTH QUARTER EARNINGS and not as what the earlier and other sources seemed to leave unspecified for us less than highly economically educated readers.  That would be me.  This means that the figures that they were reporting in other places were decidedly on the low side.  When the newspaper reports were reporting Health insurance profits of 12 Billion dollars, silly me, I was led to believe that they were talking about 12 Billion dollars per year  for the industry.  Now it appears that the truth of the matter is that 12 Billion Dollars a year would be closer to what the yearly  profit is on the money made by JUST THIS SINGLE CALIFORNIA COMPANY.  

     Of course that’s only a measly 2.2%.

     You or I would starve on 2.2%.  Of what we have available to us.

     Should you care to actually look through the article in a bit more detail, you’ll notice that 2.2% really is too tiny for this company, even though at 2.2% adds up to almost 12Billion dollars per year,  and that they are seeking an approximately 39% rate hike, to get that tiny little drop-in-the-bucket profit margin up just a little bit where it doesn’t have to feel ashamed of itself.

     I do so feel their pain.

http://www.care2.com/causes/health-policy/blog/health-insurer-defends-39-percent-premium-increase/


     Having spend must of the last 40 years or so in Boston, I’ve grown familiar with a concept called Lying by Omission.  It’s supposed to be as bad as lying by commission, but seems to be more favored by people who want to appear to be telling the truth while they’re really working very hard at constructing, crafting, polishing and presenting a lie of international Gold Medal Quality.

     I don't think the Olymic Lying Event runs during the Winter Olympics, though.  It's probably a Summer Olympic event, butcause winter Olympic events have so much downhill to them, and with the Olympic Lying event, it seems to me like there's never really a downside, is there?  It's all sunshine and smiles.

     I must say that without actually saying one thing that wasn’t literally true, the insurance companies and their PR flack friends seem to have taken you for a big time trip here.  You need to find a better grade of publican and sinner to hang out with, guys.

     These folks are malicious.  


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87 posted 02-23-2010 09:21 PM       View Profile for Balladeer   Email Balladeer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Balladeer's Home Page   View IP for Balladeer

Lying by omission....that describes the 2.2 million jobs "saved" by the stimulus plan. Got it...

Malicious....Obama hasn't used that word yet but I'm sure he will get around to it.
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88 posted 02-23-2010 11:08 PM       View Profile for JenniferMaxwell   Email JenniferMaxwell   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for JenniferMaxwell

Will the Republicans Post Their Health Plan… and When?


The President believes strongly that Thursday’s bipartisan meeting on health insurance reform will be most productive if both sides come to the table with a unified plan to start discussion – and if the public has the opportunity to inspect those proposals up close before the meeting happens.

That’s why yesterday the White House posted online the President’s proposal for bridging the differences between the Senate- and House-passed health insurance reform bills. The proposal puts American families and small business owners in control of their own health care. It makes insurance more affordable by providing the largest middle-class tax cuts for health care in history, it ends discrimination based on pre-existing conditions, holds insurance companies accountable,   and reduces our deficit by $100 billion over the next 10 years.

But you don’t have to take our word for it: the proposal is posted right here at WhiteHouse.gov for everyone to examine. You can read through the plan’s bipartisan ideas section by section, or you can select your health care status and find out what the proposal would mean for you. You can even submit a question for our policy staff to answer.

What you can’t do just yet is read about the Republicans’ consensus plan – because so far they haven’t announced what proposal they’ll be bringing to the table. To be sure, there are many Republicans who share the President’s conviction that we need to act on reform, and there are several pieces of Republican health care legislation out there. Previously we were told this was the House Republican bill. Is it still? We look forward to hearing whether this the proposal they'll bring. The Senate Republicans have yet to post any kind of plan, so we continue to await word from them. As of right now, the American people still don’t know which one Congressional Republicans support and which one they want to present to the public on Thursday.

President Obama has been clear that his proposal isn’t the final say on legislation, and that’s what Thursday’s meeting is all about. But after a year of historic national dialogue about reform, it’s time for both sides to be clear about what their plan is to lower costs, hold insurance companies accountable, make health insurance affordable for those without it, and reduce the deficit.  A collection of piecemeal and sometimes conflicting ideas won’t do.

As we said today, we’ll be happy to post the Republican plan on our website once they indicate to us which one we should post. We hope they won’t pass up this opportunity to make their case to the American people.
http://www.whitehouse.gov/blog/2010/02/22/will-republicans-post-their-health-plan-and-when
serenity blaze
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89 posted 02-23-2010 11:18 PM       View Profile for serenity blaze   Email serenity blaze   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for serenity blaze

We should ask someone who is dying.

I have a few people who are, but there is one in particular that I think might get some angst-sorta-therapy out of stating her mind.

She understands that I don't want to understand.

Let me know if ya'll are interested in an American Dream gone bad.

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90 posted 02-24-2010 02:45 AM       View Profile for Bob K   Email Bob K   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Bob K



       I'm sorry, I thought I was talking about the health care and insurance issues that You wanted to talk about, Mike.  If I'd knjown that actually trying to address some of the points that you made and the sources that you brought up to make the points would end up with you changing the subject to jobs and recovery, I would have asked you in advance to keep to the subject of health care.  But I do know that you dislike that sort of thing.

     Even if you dislike the points my comments try to make about the source material you've been talking about doesn't mean I'm right in my reasoning or in my conclusions.  It simply means that the case I'm making isn't all that bad.  And I do think I've made at least a reasonable case.  That is, I can be seen believing my case if you look at it with an open mind.

     If, Mike, you are upset about what I'm saying about your comments about health care, why not repond to what I've said about health care?  I'm sure that you have some interesting thoughts to share; and if you want to talk about the jobs bill or job reform, you've always been good about starting other threads to deal with these issues.  I'll probably have stuff to say there as well.  Right now, though, if we confuse these discussions, I won't get a very good idea of how you've understood what I've said, what you think of my reasoning and what you think of health care in general right now.

     And I agree with you that it is very important, especially  with the president and the Senate Republicans getting together to talk about it soon.  1990 pages wage too long, 11 pages was much too short, a request for open dialogue, especially televised, was an urgent request by Mr. Boehner so the public could see what was going on; now that the press is invited to film, Mr. Boehner is unsure because being televised may preclude serious dialogue.  

     The one think that I feel I can say with some certainty is that things are moving, though I can't say for certain which direction they are moving in.  For all I can tell, it's around in majestic circles, but at least there seems to be some sort of reciprocal movement.

     Take a deep breath and let's see if we can continue to talk, Mike.  You comments about the low profit margins really did set me back on my heels for abit and did make me think and re-examine the way I was looking at things.  I found it useful.  I'm hoping you can take my comments in the same spirit.  The two of us can actually act like we're constructing a conversation and building up and testing facts and trying to get at the heart of things.  This means that everybody has to think and re-think the way we see things and the way we understand them.  I hope.
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91 posted 02-24-2010 10:11 AM       View Profile for Balladeer   Email Balladeer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Balladeer's Home Page   View IP for Balladeer

If I'd known that actually trying to address some of the points that you made and the sources that you brought up to make the points would end up with you changing the subject to jobs and recovery, I would have asked you in advance to keep to the subject of health care.

Sorry, Bob. After the responses I got in  #73 and #77, I was beginning to think that was the new norm around here. You brought up a tactic known as lying by ommission and even labeled it malicious so I felt  it not out of line to show an area where the Democrats themselves have used the same approach. If it is more proper to apply it solely to health care, no problem. Lying by ommission would be Obama declaring there were 46 million uninsured Americans needing health care without stating that over 9 million of them were illegal aliens, folks he claimed would not be eligible for coverage. (he later had to backtrack and adjust his figures, if you recall). Lying by ommission would be declaring that the cost would be deficit neutral, which it will not be. Lying by ommission would be the ping-pong world of the public option,which he declares is vital, is not vital, which must be included, which is optional. Lying by ommission is just another way of saying the devil is in the details. You call it malicious? Then you have to call all government actions using the same equally malicious. It would appear to me that you are reciting the same passages from Obama's playbook....demonize the insurance companies and make them the German Jews of 1935. God knows I am no fan of insurance companies but, as I stated earlier (which you decided not to respond to the question), where is the outrage over the other facets of the industry which also contribute to the high cost of health care? Obama is good about putting up wanted posters to vilify and incite the masses, be it banks, wall street, big business, insurance companies or anyone else he thinks will work (excluding ones he has made back door deals with, of course).

Bob, when you hear the President or democrats talk, they always say one thing..."The American people want....", as if they are speaking for the American people, when, in fact, that is a bald-faced lie. Poll after poll, month after month, every poll shows that the American people do NOT want the democrat plan for health care, at least not the parts they are allowed to see. They want to see reform and cost-cutting procedures put into place but the majority do NOT believe that the proposed plan is the answer. How then can Democrat after Democrat proclaim that their plan is what the American people want when, in fact, the people have shown they want the exact opposite?

Btw, your concern for my being "upset" by your words or thoughts is very thoughtful but don't let it bother you, my friend. Things in real life can upset me, although I try my best not to let them. Here in cyberspace, I can only get bemused or slightly irritated at best by what you or anyone else says, which dissipates the moment I press the Power Off button and return to real life. Perhaps you feel the same.   In real life, I would be happy to sit down and buy you a beer or the beverage of your choice and speak of Michaelangelo.

The fact of the matter, Bob, is that this isn't for the American people. This is personal. This is Obamacare. Obama wants to be known as the president that finally passed health care. The Democratic congress wants to be known as the congress that passed health care. That's what both want to be their legacy. God knows they need something. With a Democratic President, Democratic House and Democratic senate, with the power to pass anything they feel like, they have been singularly inneffective. Even several of the democratic congressmen have admitted that they need health care passed because they need SOMETHING to take back home to show voters they accomplished at least something.

Obama just wants it for himself. With the vast majority of public opinion stating that unemployment is the major issue of the day needing to be resolved, Obama still throws the majority of his effort into health care, a program that will not even take effect for three years. If he threw 10% of the effort he has expounded in health care into job creation and employment, the country would be a lot better off, but then that would add to his legacy, would it? Health care overhaul is his baby, whether the American people support it or not.

[This message has been edited by Balladeer (02-24-2010 10:57 AM).]

JenniferMaxwell
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92 posted 02-24-2010 01:57 PM       View Profile for JenniferMaxwell   Email JenniferMaxwell   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for JenniferMaxwell

This is an interesting article:

Fact-checking the GOP on healthcare reform

"Almost no one is noting the extraordinary influence Republicans had on the healthcare reform bill crafted by the Senate, as it made its way through the committee process last year. The bill approved by Sen. Christopher Dodd's Health, Education, Labor and Pensions committee, for instance, included 161 amendments authored by Republicans. Only 49 Republican amendments were rejected out of 210 considered.  Yet the bill got zero Republican votes when it passed out of the committee."
...
"The Washington Post's Ezra Klein has noted that the final Democratic proposals have contained multiple GOP planks. To mention just a few:
• Allow individuals, small businesses, and trade associations to pool together and acquire health insurance at lower prices, the same way large corporations and labor unions do
• Give states the tools to create their own innovative reforms that lower healthcare costs
• End junk lawsuits
• Let families and businesses buy health insurance across state lines"
...
"But they (Democrats) haven't compromised with Republicans? It seems as though the GOP's definition of compromise and collaboration involves the president and the Democrats dropping all of their ideas and passing the Republican platform. That's OK; it's their job to push their party line. But too much of the media seems to be falling for it."
http://www.salon.com/news/healthcare_reform/index.html?story=/opinion/f eature/2010/02/23/hcr_amendments
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93 posted 02-24-2010 05:51 PM       View Profile for Balladeer   Email Balladeer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Balladeer's Home Page   View IP for Balladeer

Someone needs to make up their minds. Obama and Reid claim there is no Republican participation and yet we have the above post.

Can't they get their stories straight? Republicans either participated or they didn't. If they didn't, Obama is right and all of those republican entries are figments of someone's imagination. If they did, then Obama is lying. Your choice....
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94 posted 02-24-2010 07:09 PM       View Profile for Bob K   Email Bob K   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Bob K


quote:


You brought up a tactic known as lying by ommission and even labeled it malicious so I felt  it not out of line to show an area where the Democrats themselves have used the same approach.




     I'm not a Catholic, though I do admire the religion, and I've on occasion tried to help lapsed Catholics get back in touch with the many fine qualities it offers when it seems therapeutically indicated.  It has frequently provided material that allows for common ground in discussion with folks that have a devout background; I have some notion of what the church is talking about here, and once I mention the idea, they can get the drift of what I'm saying more easily, so it helps the talk along, especially when we're talking about addictions and stuff like that.

     So you'll understand when I say that yeah, it's a tactic, and people who use it that way really are doing it in a malicious way.  When the priests that I've spoken to talk to be about it, though, they talk about it in terms of it being a sin.  They point out, often, that the root meaning of the word "sin" has to do with error, with making an error, so I guess they're looking at lying by omission in a more charitable way than I do.  I think of the fact that it's something you have to do on purpose, more or less.  I think the priests would more or less think of it in terms of a partly conscious form of self-deception.

     I figure PR folks and Ad Agencies aren't paid to deceive themselves; they're paid to deceive the public, and that is something different entirely.  And when they do that sort of deception to help others harm or even kill themselves for the profit of those who hire the advertising or Public Relation skills of these professionals, I fugure some sort of moral line has been crossed.  

     I pride myself on my pragmatics, and here I am talking about some sort of moral line.  I have a lot of them, I guess; I simply doen't like to drag them into these discussions.  People will start to upbraid me for being a Liberal trying to induce Liberal Guilt in other people when I'm simply sharing a personal dislike.  That is, I don't like people who make money off the self destructive behavior of others; and especially those who say, "Hey, if I didn't do it, somebody else would."

     You've got to wonder where the beginning of the  line starts for people to volunteer for some of those jobs.  Sure, I'll get people to buy more cigarettes.  And so on.  It pays well. (Sorry for the digression.)

     Are there Democrats in who lie by omission?  Sure there are.  I'm sure that everybody does it from time to time, as well; it's not that the thing is so rare that nobody every came up with a name for it before.  It's got a name because it's so very common.  Should you be embarrassed because you got taken by so fast-talking dorks?  No Sir, you should not.  It happens all the time, and this sort of fast talking dork is so good at this sort of thing they are paid to do it, and paid very well indeed.  It is their job to lie to well meaning people by telling part of the truth and doing so in a convincing way.  

     And I personally learned material from what you said and the stuff you quoted.

     So I would be stunned if Democrats didn't do the same think, and didn't do it well.  

     The question that seems a useful one to my mind is what parts of the truth are they telling that you are throwing out because you assume them them to be lies?  And what can you learn that  ghets you closer to an understanding of reality?

    


quote:

If it is more proper to apply it solely to health care, no problem. Lying by ommission would be Obama declaring there were 46 million uninsured Americans needing health care without stating that over 9 million of them were illegal aliens, folks he claimed would not be eligible for coverage. (he later had to backtrack and adjust his figures, if you recall).



     You had this discussion with Grinch, as I recall.  If it was not you, it was in a discussion between Denise and Grinch.  Grinch pointed out that the law was written to exclude illegals from coverage.  He pointed out the exact text in the law, as I recall.  In case it was to Denise and not to you, or in case it was to you and you've forgotten some of the details, you might try e-mailing for the exact chapter and verse.

     Anybody may go into a hospital Emergency room with the reasonable expectation of life-saving emergency treatment, as I understand it, even without proof of identity or citizenship.  I know that some hospitals on occasion try to turn some such folks away if they don't have insurance cards, or try to send them to "public hospitals."  

     This would be an example of ad hoc Death Panels and Health Care rationing on life and death matters being imposed in for-profit institutions today.  I have the same feeling about this that Denise has expressed about the potential of such things being imposed in the future.  It stinks.  I regard it as institutionalized murder or manslaughter by depraved indifference.

     It is also contrary to the oath that physicians take in order to become physicians.  

     Talk about having legislation interfere with the relationship between a physician and a patient!  Holy Canolli. Mike.  Thar she blows!  


quote:

Lying by ommission would be declaring that the cost would be deficit neutral, which it will not be.



     You may be right, but I don't know.  It would depend on the funding mechanism, wouldn't it?  Then it would depend on which actual propgram is passed.  

     And without a bill in place for us to evaluate that, I don't think I could tell you.  Furthermore, you have no basis to make that assertion to tell me.  There have been various estimates, some of which look closer than others.  

     If the funding does include savings in the money spent on government drug purchases and the institution of a single payer health plan, it may indeed be budget neutral or close to it.  If the whole notion of insurance and health care reform is scuttled, then it will not be.

     The President seems bent on offering versions of the bill with substantial Republican input.  See Jennifer's comments above, where she is able to substantiate that.  Exactly how that affects the cost of the billis something I don't know.  Are these ammendments useful or are they poison pellets, so that the bill will be doomed to failure even those it may be passed entirely without Republican support, assuming such a thing is possible.  It may in fact be structured with costly additions, and I wouldn't know who added them, Mike.  Nor, I fear, would you.

     Is this Lying by Omission?  Or is it a description of how the bill was constructed at one particular point in time or is it something else entirely?

     I can't tell you because I really don't know,

{quote]
Lying by ommission would be the ping-pong world of the public option,which he declares is vital, is not vital, which must be included, which is optional. Lying by ommission is just another way of saying the devil is in the details.
[/quote]

     Do you have anything to back this up in context, Mike?  It seems a bit vague to me.  

     The devil may be in the details.  This is often where Fraud lies as well, and manslaughter and various other things where the crime is in not revealing the potential damage or in misleading or in offering false information.
You are trying to make nice and in the process coming across like a lawyer.


quote:

You call it malicious? Then you have to call all government actions using the same equally malicious.



     Certainly I call it malicious.  That's what I was saying, and I went about the business of saying where, how and why.

     Now you are saying, If . . . then.  

If this (private sector example of) Catagory I is A,

Then all (Government sector examples of) Catagory I are A.

     If you're trying to get me to come out in favor of the Government lying, you've come to the wrong guy.  If you want to jump on President Obama, you've never had to ask permission.  

     Your comment about the German Jews of 1935 makes absolutely no sense at all.

     I have said repeatedly that the drug companies were getting away with highway robbery and that they should have to submit competitive bids.  I even said it during the time the legislation was being discussed and have said it loudly and frequently since.  I usually accompany my comments about that with comments about  the sweetheart deal that the then President Bush made with the drug Companies in the matter.  I commented about the Republican role in the voting and the debt that that vote guaranteed to wrack up and I commented on the fact that the thing could have been done for much much cheaper and still provide the needed services.  Perhaps you forget my comments at that time.  You should be well aware of my comments since, if only because of the reasonable frequency with which I have voiced them.

     I also will stop to criticize the spineless quality of the Democrats who didn't hold out for a more taxpayer friendly version of that bill.  They were wimps.  This is a misinformed thing to criticize me about, Mike.  I'm sure you can find other, more appropriate things, authentic flaws that I can learn from.


quote:

God knows I am no fan of insurance companies . . . .



     Yes, I do know that, Mike, and I respect you for it, and I  even appreciate you taking time out in the middle of the discussion to say so.  Comments such as this are very important to me.

quote:

     Obama is good about putting up wanted posters to vilify and incite the masses, be it banks, wall street, big business, insurance companies or anyone else he thinks will work (excluding ones he has made back door deals with, of course).




     I realize you see this from your position, but I have trouble from mine.  And I find it difficult to get a sense of his impact on those masses as well.  I wish he were better about following through.  I understand that this makes no sense to you, probably, and that you are probably grateful that he's not so good at these things.


quote:

Bob, when you hear the President or democrats talk, they always say one thing..."The American people want....", as if they are speaking for the American people, when, in fact, that is a bald-faced lie. Poll after poll, month after month, every poll shows that the American people do NOT want the democrat plan for health care, at least not the parts they are allowed to see. They want to see reform and cost-cutting procedures put into place but the majority do NOT believe that the proposed plan is the answer. How then can Democrat after Democrat proclaim that their plan is what the American people want when, in fact, the people have shown they want the exact opposite?



     I am to some extent, with you on this one.  Though I'm afraid that what I see here and what you see are different.  That may not be so much a surprise.

     What I have seen and heard over and over is that the congress is not pushing for what a large portion of what the people want, which is a single payer health plan.  There are people, like you, and Threadbear and Denise who are really deadset against such a thing, but the polls that I hear about seem to show a large part of the public wants that as at least a strong option.  I think that the Democrats are pretty much in the pockets of the insurance companies and the Drug companies, with no real excuse for it.  The Republicans are in the same pockets, but they haven't campaigned in the same way and for the same set of interests, and I think they're weakness is more understandable.  I don't like it, but I understand it.

     Let me try to be clear, I think the Democrats are doing a better job on the whole of trying to speak for the American people, but the whole political process is so much in the hands of the multinationals and the money guys who can help a legislator into office or help an opponent get him out of office that we need the equivalent of a constitutional ammendment to get that money out of politics and get the regular folks back in.

     The decision in the Supreme Court about Money and Free Speech still makes me gag.  It's like turning over the country to the highest bidder, the folks who can get together the highest advertising budget for tv ads and publicty blitzes and October surprises.

quote:

Btw, your concern for my being "upset" by your words or thoughts is very thoughtful but don't let it bother you, my friend. Things in real life can upset me, although I try my best not to let them. Here in cyberspace, I can only get bemused or slightly irritated at best by what you or anyone else says, which dissipates the moment I press the Power Off button and return to real life. Perhaps you feel the same.    In real life, I would be happy to sit down and buy you a beer or the beverage of your choice and speak of Michaelangelo.




     A couple of adult beverages would be nice some time, especially if you're ever in this neck of the woods.  I sometimes get to the Charleston area.  Maybe we could work something out at some point.  It's be a lot of fun.

     Are are you in Florida?

     As for being concerned with treating you well on line, I continue to be concerned with treating you well on line.  I do think and feel about things after the power button is off.  I think about friends I haven't spoken with in 30 years, and have mental conversations almost as though they were still there.  When I meet them, it's almost as though I'm meeting a stranger, sometimes, because I've got this self-created person in my head who's my old friend from 30 years before and here in front of me is this person that I have to get to know all over again.  Maybe we'll get along, maybe not, but I've still got my inner pal.  How strange! I think sometimes.  I'm such an introvert.


quote:

The fact of the matter, Bob, is that this isn't for the American people. This is personal. This is Obamacare. Obama wants to be known as the president that finally passed health care. The Democratic congress wants to be known as the congress that passed health care. That's what both want to be their legacy. God knows they need something. With a Democratic President, Democratic House and Democratic senate, with the power to pass anything they feel like, they have been singularly inneffective. Even several of the democratic congressmen have admitted that they need health care passed because they need SOMETHING to take back home to show voters they accomplished at least something.



     Again, I think you're on to something.  If only they could work together and get it actually done.  I want to leave a legacy, too.  Many people do, but a lot of us poets want to leave a legacy in the form of poems that people will read.  This is basic to what people are and how people operate.


quote:

Obama just wants it for himself. With the vast majority of public opinion stating that unemployment is the major issue of the day needing to be resolved, Obama still throws the majority of his effort into health care, a program that will not even take effect for three years. If he threw 10% of the effort he has expounded in health care into job creation and employment, the country would be a lot better off, but then that would add to his legacy, would it? Health care overhaul is his baby, whether the American people support it or not.



     Not sure I'm with you so much, here.  Jobs and employment can be a legacy as well.  Think of FDR.  Whatever your thoughts may be about FDR, coming as you do from the  Republican standpoint so often, and I've heard Republicans give a whole range of opinions on the man, you've got to acknowledge that there are a lot of people who are sure as can be that FDR brough us jobs and led us out of The Great Depression.  Kenneth Roberts, who hated the man, had an ashtry made of Roosevelt-head dimes, so that he could put his cigarettes out on FDR's face every time he reached for a new one.

     It really can be a legacy.

     Americans want health care as well.  It sells better when their working, though.  As the Clinton Campaign said, "It's the economy, Stupid!"  and it's still true today.  When more people are working, health care will be a more immediate part of the economy, though, and will shoot people in the wallets more directly.  It's still the leading cost of bankruptcy far as I know.
JenniferMaxwell
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I don't recall the President saying there was no Republican participation, Balladeer, but you say he did indeed say that and since there was, therefore he's lying. Calling the President a liar is a pretty strong statement. I'm sure you must have something to back that up with, so link please.

Since the Republicans had such an  extraordinary influence on the bill, why do you keep calling it Obamacare? Shouldn't the Republicans take at least some responsibility for what's in the bill?

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     You, Mike, can have it both ways.  Lots of ammendments, lots of Republican ideas, a plan that is virtually identical to the plan the Republicans suggested in response to the 1994 Hillary plan and would have voted for then and they still en block vote against it suggest that republicans were listened to.

     When were the "No Republican Help" statements made in comparison to the included ammendments, Mike?  Are you comparing statements made at the same time about the same subject?  Please quote the statements themselves. And what help are the ammendments if they aren't enough to get the help needed to get a health care bill passed?  

     If you're going to make liar liar comments, you'd better get your comments and contexts nailed down and be ready to show your aces when your hand is called, hey.

     And please show all work.
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Well, ladies and gentleman, I will have to look for links. Undoubtedly everything done or said in the past several years must be on the internet somewhere, I assume you must believe. I find it difficult for either of you to believe, however, that you hadn't heard Reid, Pelosi or Obama criticize republicans for their lack of participation in the health care process. I can hear Reid saying now, "Where is your plan?" to the democrats. I can also recall Obama chastizing republicans in his meeting with them several weeks ago for not coming forth with ideas. it must be that you missed that.

buenas noches...
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Take your time coming up with quotes or links to back your statement that the President said there was no Republican participation, Balladeer, no rush.

If you need a link to the transcript of that meeting you mentioned let me know. I have it right here, just finished reading it to refresh my recollection.
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     I remember that the ideas that the President criticised the Republicans for coming up with were ideas that didn't get by the budget advisors and weren't fiscally sound.  I listened to the presentation for the Folks in the House, which was a very interesting conversation, I thought, and which may explain some of what we're talking about here.

     Over and over, The Republicans would come up with questions such as the ones that you were asking, and The President would have to  complete the the sound byte for them, such as (and this is by no means exact; you'd have to look at a transcript for exact examples, I'm only trying to give you a flavor here) "Yes, you submitted me proposals, but when I sent them to my advisors and to fact checkers, all the proposals said that the proposals weren't budget neutral and would end up costing us extra money."  

     There were a lot of exchanges like that one during the conference; and a mean A LOT.

     I don't know that the Republicans made their comments in bad faith, but then I can't imaginer that they were stupid, either.  I simply didn't and don't know what to make of them.  It was clear that at least some of them were sincerte and decent folks, and it was clear that The President thought so too, and, what's more, he treated them that way, though he sort of half appologized for it, like he knew he might be getting them in trouble, and he didn't want to do that.

     I think I remember that you said you hadn't actually watched the actual broadcast in its entirety, but only excerpts on Fox, and that might be your problem.  Why not check out tonight's broadcast of C-Span.  It won't be trying as hard to entertain you, but then it won't be trying as hard to spin the material right or left.  You'll still be disliking The President, so that won't change.  You'll still be rooting for your guys, so that won't change, but  you will get pretty much the whole give and take and you won't depend on what somebody else is trying to tell you what everybody said.  You'll have heard the whole thing for yourself.  You'll hear enough of Fox and the other folks later.

     The straight BS is better that somebody else's version of the BS is better than someody else's self-serving version of  of somebody else's version  of the BS.  That last would be comentators of one version or another, who can have an interesting take or interpretation; interesting so long as you don't confuse it with the BS its own self.  If you know what I mean.  Sorry if I'm trying to suggest a new way to suck eggs here, soldier.  It just a lot of us don't like 'em powdered.
 
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