Letters to the Editor

Medicare plan

May 17, 2011

Advertisement

To the editor:

Congressman Paul Ryan’s plan to replace Medicare with medical vouchers will hurt today’s seniors who remain on Medicare, not just those under 55 who will be forced to accept the vouchers. As the number of seniors on Medicare would shrink, doctors and hospitals would feel less pressure to accept Medicare’s discounted payments. Seniors like me would find it increasingly difficult to find a doctor or hospital that accepts Medicare. Ryan’s plan puts all the burden on seniors when there are fairer ways to ensure its continued success.

Comments

Liberty_One 4 years, 1 month ago

What about the people paying the bill? Seniors have voted themselves into this national debt and now they want the younger generation to pay for all their spending--past, present and future. Sorry, but seniors are going to have to accept less because they couldn't keep spending under control for the past 30 years or else the rest of us are going to revolt.

Gandalf 4 years, 1 month ago

Time for you pay for you own education LO. I'm tired of supporting you. Pay back your gov loans and grants now. Or I may revolt.

PS I already think you are revolting!

Liberty_One 4 years, 1 month ago

I paid for my own education, mostly through scholarships. Thank you very much for the offer, though.

Any other personal attacks? I know how you love to talk about me instead of the issues.

Gandalf 4 years, 1 month ago

You mean you were lying in previous posts when you said you had government loans including perkins? And I'm sure you never received any pell grants

Besides talking about you is the issue. It's people like you that are the problem. Take anything you can get but never want to give anything back.

Liberty_One 4 years, 1 month ago

You want me to be the issue because you're a troll and that's what trolls do.

TomJoad23 4 years, 1 month ago

LO i have the utmost respect for anybody who argues their points as well as you do. That being said, i believe that the notion that everybody should take care of their own in a country with a population of this size, simply won't work. There will always be a need for public welfare because there are people out there that simply cannot afford to pay for basic amenities such as healthcare, food, basic living expenses, etc. Now if everybody in this country lived above the poverty line and was able to sustain themselves through complete and total independence from the govt then we would live in a perfect world. But this isn't a perfect world and the Government will always have to provide a welfare cushion to those that desperately need it. Our population is much to large to participate in the most strictest of Libertarian ideals.

Liberty_One 4 years, 1 month ago

"There will always be a need for public welfare because there are people out there that simply cannot afford to pay for basic amenities such as healthcare, food, basic living expenses, etc. "

I agree. But why are private sources of welfare insufficient?

seriouscat 4 years, 1 month ago

Ever read Angela's Ashes?

Do you have any examples of places where there is zero state welfare where the people at the bottom of the totem pole don't end up living like and being treated like animals?

moonlite318 4 years, 1 month ago

I don't believe it was the spending of seniors as much as it is the choice of a doctors wanting this test and that test. Seniors and disabled people carry the card but the doctors and hospitals make the decision on the treatment.

jafs 4 years, 1 month ago

If it's true that Social Security operates as a pay as you go program, then current seniors have been funding previous generations' retirement, no?

jafs 4 years, 1 month ago

That's a mighty broad brush you're using there.

I'm pretty sure that seniors have not voted across the board for more spending and fewer taxes.

Republicans have certainly voted for lower taxes - Democrats not so much.

jafs 4 years, 1 month ago

Too broad.

The politicians are to blame, not the people - isn't that sort of what you're always saying?

jafs 4 years, 1 month ago

???

I don't blame current seniors for the problems with the systems in the way you seem to.

I'll gladly give politicians less, if that's what you mean, given their collective failure to deal with the issues for so long.

jafs 4 years, 1 month ago

I've already explained my idea:

Re-structure Social Security and Medicare so that they go to those who need them, and not to those that don't need them.

Stop collecting separately for the programs.

jafs 4 years, 1 month ago

I wouldn't suppress a revolution, if that's what happens.

By the way, how is your suggestion any better? 55 year olds will be completely on their own in 10 years - what will you do about the revolution?

But, I would urge people to consider the positives of my idea - it would make the programs sustainable, it would operate as do fire and police - we pay in (unequally), use them as needed (unequally), feel good if we don't need them, and if we do need them, they're available.

Personally, if my wife and I are ok when retirement age comes, I don't particularly care about whether or not I get money back. We pay a lot in taxes that we don't get back, and that goes towards a variety of things we may not agree with.

The only concrete issue to me is whether we have enough to live on or not.

jafs 4 years, 1 month ago

I wouldn't suppress a revolution, if that's what happens.

By the way, how is your suggestion any better? 55 year olds will be completely on their own in 10 years - what will you do about the revolution?

But, I would urge people to consider the positives of my idea - it would make the programs sustainable, it would operate as do fire and police - we pay in (unequally), use them as needed (unequally), feel good if we don't need them, and if we do need them, they're available.

Personally, if my wife and I are ok when retirement age comes, I don't particularly care about whether or not I get money back. We pay a lot in taxes that we don't get back, and that go towards a variety of things we may not agree with.

The only concrete issue to me is whether we have enough to live on or not.

jafs 4 years, 1 month ago

  1. It's not "all that time" - it's just 10 years.
  2. It's not that huge an increase, and, what makes you think that employers won't decrease wages?
  3. Yes, young folks in their 20's will probably be fine, and have plenty of time.

I'm not shutting out anybody who needs it - the system works well for fire, police, and emergency services - why wouldn't it work for retirement supplementation?

It requires thinking about it a little differently than we do right now, that's all.

jafs 4 years, 1 month ago

I'm looking at a paycheck - FICA is about 5%.

Federal and state withholding is more than 10%.

So I think your numbers are off - assume that employers simply reduce pay by their contributions, so that employees get their contributions back.

Somebody making $40,000/yr will get $2,000/yr more - that translates to $20,000 over ten years.

That's hardly enough to pay for one's retirement and health care expenses.

I get your point, but the same is true of fire, police, and emergency services - the guy that smokes in bed gets the fire department services when his house catches fire. People don't often complain about that - I'm pissed that I don't get the police services, because I don't wander around alleys at 2am drunk.

As I said, we're generally happy to not need the services, and we're happy if they're needed.

jafs 4 years, 1 month ago

You're assuming that employers will pass that money on to the employees, which is possible, but not at all guaranteed.

In your example, that would give somebody about $600/month (before taxes), assuming a reasonable 5% return. If their employer doesn't pass on their portion of FICA, it would be 1/2 that much.

And, in addition, they would have no Medicare benefits. So your plan gives them a bit less than SS (in the optimistic scenario), but no Medicare benefits.

Again, my plan is not a ponzi scheme, and would be much more sustainable than the current version.

By the way, I find the numbers to be different from yours - 12.4% of $55,000=$6,820x10=$68,200, not $100,000.

It's possible that one could be investing the money and get more, but it's also possible that one's investments could lose money during that 10 yr. period. The stock market is risky.

Also, of course, an average means that there are a bunch of people under than number, as well as some above it.

Just for fun, I ran the numbers assuming your 12.4% figure on a $55,000 salary for 40 years. I get $6,820x40=$272,800, which invested at 5% would generate about $1137/month, with no health care benefits.

Of course, over that time, one could probably count on some appreciation in the market as well.

By the way, all of this assumes that people will save all of the extra money they get in their paycheck, which is also not at all certain.

jafs 4 years, 1 month ago

I think 5% is the highest rate I'd count on for retirement investing, as those should be pretty safe investments.

We don't live in a country without a Federal Reserve, so that's not helpful.

I wasn't counting returns from each year, which as I said might increase the total.

So, now your 10 yr projection is $90,000 rather than $100,000, assuming 5%/yr?

jafs 4 years, 1 month ago

Sure, for those that have and can afford those investments.

Many people don't and can't.

jafs 4 years, 1 month ago

So, your proposal leaves those who can't afford it to suffer.

That's why Democrats and liberals don't like the idea.

The whole idea of these programs is that we want to make sure people don't suffer in their old age.

50YearResident 4 years, 1 month ago

Are you volenteering to remove yourself from all government benefits?

50YearResident 4 years, 1 month ago

Remember this, Liberty One: If you live long enough, you too will be a senior citizen. So you are discussing your own welfare.

Richard Heckler 4 years, 1 month ago

How to reduce the cost of the federal government in a large way?

Let's reduce health care costs by allowing all Americans the choice of low cost great coverage IMPROVED Medicare Insurance for All.

Mandate that all federal government employees including all elected officials use IMPROVED Medicare Insurance for All. Instead of using the most expensive medical insurance industry in the world. YES!

Again let's reduce health care costs by allowing all Americans the choice of low cost great coverage IMPROVED Medicare Insurance for All.

Improved Medicare Insurance for All would provide real medical insurance reform!

The United States spends twice as much as other industrialized nations on healthcare – $8160 per capita – yet performs poorly in comparison and leaves over 46 million people without health coverage and millions more inadequately covered.

Expanded and Improved Medicare Insurance for All is one of the solutions.

  • Easy to Implement: Medicare has been in existence since 1966, it provides healthcare to those 65 and older, and satisfaction levels are high. The structure is already in place and can be easily expanded to cover everyone.

  • Simple: One entity – established by the government – would handle billing and payment at a cost significantly lower than private insurance companies. Private insurance companies spend about 31% of every healthcare dollar on administration. Medicare now spends about 3%.

  • Real Choice: An expanded and improved Medicare for All would provide personal choice of doctors and other healthcare providers. While financing would be public, providers would remain private. As with Medicare, you choose your doctor, your hospital, and other healthcare providers.

  • State and Local Tax Relief: Medicare for All would assume the costs of healthcare delivery, thus relieving the states and local governments of the cost of healthcare, including Medicaid, and as a result reduce State and local tax burdens.

  • Expanded coverage: Would cover all medically necessary healthcare services – no more rationing by private insurance companies. There would be no limits on coverage, no co-pays or deductibles, and services would include not only primary and specialized care but also prescription drugs, dental, vision, mental health services, and long-term care.

  • Everyone In, Nobody Out: Everyone would be eligible and covered. No longer would doctors ask what insurance you have before they treat you.

  • No More Overpriced Private Health Insurance: Medicare for All would eliminate the need for private health insurance companies who put profit before healthcare, unfairly limit choice, restrict who gets coverage, and force people into bankruptcy.

  • Lower Costs: Most people will pay significantly less for healthcare. Savings will be achieved in reduced administrative costs and in negotiated prices for prescription drugs.

http://www.healthcare-now.org/

Flap Doodle 4 years, 1 month ago

How many hundreds of times have you copy/pasted that same drivel onto this award-winning website, merrill? 700? 800? 1000 times?

Richard Heckler 4 years, 1 month ago

Congress Out Of Touch

Could it be that congress is wayyyy out of touch?

The Washington Post and ABC News survey found that Americans prefer to keep Medicare the way it is and oppose cuts in Medicaid. More than half say they are against small, across-the-board tax increases while calls to raise tax rates on the wealthiest Americans enjoyed solid support.

Seanator Sanders, a member of the Senate Budget Committee, has proposed legislation to impose a 5.4 percent surtax on millionaires that would raise up to $50 billion a year in new revenue. He also has called for eliminating tax breaks for oil and gas companies and loopholes that corporations use to shelter income overseas.

"While we have to move toward a balanced budget, we have to do it in a responsible way," Sanders said. "We need shared sacrifice, not just cuts that balance the budget on the backs of the sick, children, the poor and the elderly."

http://sanders.senate.gov/newsroom/news/?id=34fe9001-d1bc-4a2f-8314-f2ad62c40e26

http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2011/04/21/us/nat-poll.html?ref=us

nativeson 4 years, 1 month ago

It is misguided to believe that somehow a new delivery system will reduce costs. The cost drivers are not a result of private insurers, but by an environment of litigation and medical protocol that is just too expensive. The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act passed by the Obama adminstration nor a voucher program will deal with the core issue. These are both poor efforts that will simply redistribute costs from one group to another.

Decisions about end-of-life care and procedures that have marginal results have to be dealt with soon as the population continues to get older with less employees putting into the plan. These type of tough decisions will certainly not be dealt with effectively by any federal government administration.

Richard Heckler 4 years, 1 month ago

A new delivery system will reduce costs by about $350 billion a year. IMPROVED Medicare Insurance for All can do that because it could eliminate about 2000 insurance providers that add tons and tons of administrative costs to the system. An estimated 30% = administrative costs.

This would NOT require reinventing the wheel. Medicare is in place. Improving Medicare to service all would be relatively simple.

Why in the name of god is health insurance and other coverage so damn expensive?

  1. Obscene CEO wages

  2. stock options

  3. golden parachutes

  4. shareholders

  5. Corp jet planes

  6. Executive golf in the Bahamas

  7. Corp Limo

  8. lifetime medical insurance for the executives

  9. 3 martini lunch's

  10. Health care dollars spent on special interest political campaigns

  11. Health Care/Health Insurance industry has 6 lobbyists per elected official = more than 3,000. These folks do not come cheap. Many are former elected officials.

Yes there is plenty of fat that could be eliminated from an anything but efficient system.

Richard Heckler 4 years, 1 month ago

CIGNA CEO Receives $73 million retirement bonus aka golden parahute http://www.healthcare-now.org/denial-of-care-profits-73-million-for-cignas-retiring-ceo/

How much is the U.S. health care system costing you? http://www.dollarsandsense.org/archives/2008/0508harrison.html

What does the model of IMPROVED Medicare Insurance for ALL look like?

IMPROVED Medicare Insurance for ALL would cover every person for all necessary medical care to include:

  • prescription drugs • hospital • surgical, • outpatient services • primary and preventive care • emergency services, • dental • mental health • home health
    • physical therapy • rehabilitation (including for substance abuse), • vision care, • hearing services including hearing aids • chiropractic • durable medical equipment • palliative care • long term care

No deductibles No Co-pays

A family of four making the median income of $56,200 would pay approximately $2,700 a year in for IMPROVED Medicare Insurance for ALL.

Allow IMPROVED Medicare Insurance for ALL to be available now to all taxpaying consumers and let them make the choice. The mechanism is in place as we speak.

Health care in and of itself would remain a private industry.

IMPROVED Medicare Insurance for All leaves choices of doctors,clinics,hospital and services across the board to the consumer. No more interference coming from the medical insurance industry.

http://www.healthcare-now.org/

Richard Heckler 4 years, 1 month ago

Obamacare and IMPROVED Medicare Insurance for ALL are in no way alike.

ObamaCare is the medical insurance industry written by the medical insurance industry who have filtered into the government system as senate staffers on both sides of the aisle

Meanwhile:

Medical Insurance Industry Showing Record Profits which also increases OUR cost of living across the board like high dollar gasoline.

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/05/14/business/14health.html?_r=2

Flap Doodle 4 years, 1 month ago

A search on "improved medicare for all" + merrill brings back 661 hits. Keep copy/pasting, bub. I'm sure you will convince somebody some time.....

monkeyhawk 4 years, 1 month ago

"As the number of seniors on Medicare would shrink, doctors and hospitals would feel less pressure to accept Medicare’s discounted payments."

Doctors already are refusing Medicare in case you haven't heard. Rachel Maddow won't tell you about that. Just a few examples in as easy to find search:

"Rejections rise for Medicare patients

The first thing they ask is what insurance do I have," Edmonds says. "When I say Medicare, they say the doctor doesn't take Medicare."

In Colorado, Charlotte Sennett, 72, and her husband stayed in traditional Medicare for years rather than switching to an HMO, even though it cost more. "We felt it was more stable," says Sennett.

But now the Sennetts face a problem they never expected: Their Denver-area doctor will no longer accept the traditional government insurance program." http://www.usatoday.com/news/health/2001-02-19-medicare.htm

"Doctors Reject Medicare as Millions of Baby Boomers Enter the System" http://www.thetakeaway.org/2010/jun/21/doctors-reject-medicare-millions-baby-boomers-enter-system/

"Baby Boomer Bust: Doctors Refusing Medicare Patients" http://www.theroot.com/buzz/babyboomer-bust-doctors-refusing-medicare-patients

shadowlady 4 years, 1 month ago

Oh my gosh this is what I have been saying for months, and certain people were practically calling me liar and saying I didn't know what I was talking about, on these articles in the paper. Wow I'm astonished, now finally someone is wiseing up and saying the same thing. Way to go monkeyhawk!!! And thank you!!!

monkeyhawk 4 years, 1 month ago

You're welcome. There are some here who can't refute facts, or only get their facts from lib TV and are poorly informed, or some that want to attack your source because it isn't the Huffer Post, NY Times, John Stewart, etc.

There is even newer data on these figures and the percentage of Doctors rejecting Medicare patients is even higher. I personally like my insurance and like my Doctors. Mr. Obama said I could keep them. I think he lied.

I am an avid fan of being able to keep my private insurance and pay for it rather than let the government have any say about my life. There is always a catch if you let government in, and it is rarely to your benefit...

BTW, if the gov plan is so great, how come this???

"Obama Administration Approves Another 204 Health Care Waivers, Bringing the Total to 1,372

The fact that over 1,000 waivers have been granted is a tacit admission that the healthcare law is fundamentally flawed," Energy and Commerce Chairman Fred Upton (R-Mich.) said in March. Upton is one of three House committee chairmen who has used new oversight powers to investigate the annual limit waivers.

Administration officials say the law allows the Health and Human Services Department to grant the waivers to avoid disrupting the insurance market before the law overhauls the insurance system in 2014. They say the waivers are granted through a transparent process." http://www.hapblog.com/2011/05/obama-administration-approves-another.html

Look at this one, just fresh:

"New Obama waivers go to Nancy Pelosi's district. Will media notice?

As NewsBusters previously noted, there were 204 ObamaCare waivers issued in April, and almost 20 percent of them went to establishments in former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's (D-Calif.) San Francisco district.

Pelosi’s district secured almost 20 percent of the latest issuance of waivers nationwide, and the companies that won them didn’t have much in common with companies throughout the rest of the country that have received Obamacare waivers.

Other common waiver recipients were labor union chapters, large corporations, financial firms and local governments. But Pelosi’s district’s waivers are the first major examples of luxurious, gourmet restaurants and hotels getting a year-long pass from Obamacare.

For instance, Boboquivari’s restaurant in Pelosi’s district in San Francisco got a waiver from Obamacare. Boboquivari’s advertises $59 porterhouse steaks, $39 filet mignons and $35 crab dinners." Read more: http://newsbusters.org/blogs/noel-sheppard/2011/05/17/20-new-obamacare-waivers-go-nancy-pelosis-district-will-media-notice#ixzz1MdkP4S4G

ignati5 4 years, 1 month ago

This entire argument, both sides, is patent bs. Without what goes by the name of "single payer," we cannot have affordable health care in the United States. We never have, we never will, and "Obamacare" is no closer to it than the cheapskate voucher system proposed by Paul Ryan. The USA is a great country in so many respects, and, for those of us who are white, male and relatively well off, it's been a great ride. But health care is not part of the equation.BG

jafs 4 years, 1 month ago

If doctors and facilities don't accept Medicare, what good is it?

That's a real, and possibly large problem, it seems to me.

Jimo 4 years, 1 month ago

You don't have to be especially bright to understand that the mass of younger voters aren't going to pay taxes to support a gold-plated program for the elderly when all the younger people can hope for is coverage built of tin foil and string.

Jimo 4 years, 1 month ago

It's not free enough for you? That's your complaint? Sorry to hear that there is a temporary imbalance in your inflows and outflows. It'll soon be rectified because ......

Average person puts in $147k and pull out over $400k.

Maybe I should have called it platinum plated with diamond accents!

You do realize that inflows and outflows cumulatively must match over the long term? Right?

Jimo 4 years, 1 month ago

Typical witty fact-filled BornBrainDead counterpoint!

Congrats! You've convinced . . . . . . . yourself.

Jimo 4 years, 1 month ago

We have a problem with medical costs in this country. We get worse medical care despite spending twice as much as anyone else. Whether that spending is private or public doesn't alter the outrageous waste and thus unacceptable costs.

Luckily, before the GOP proposed their death panel plan, this country actually passed and is implementing controls to bring down costs. Those controls are designed to treat everyone fairly -- not to engage in a money grab for the wealthy at the poor's expense.

Jimo 4 years, 1 month ago

A. WE do get worse care. Fox Propaganda won't tell you that but that it doesn't make it any less true.

B. Survival from cancer in Canada and Britain are the ONLY items we compare favorably with - barely. Even then it depends on what type of cancer. And what about France? Germany? Japan? Switzerland? etc. etc. etc?????

C. People in other countries do not wait a month to see a doctor ... unless what they need is a routine matter. What's more, I've waited up to 3 weeks to see a doctor before, right in Lawrence, Kansas!

D. There's no myth of questionable health care. Pick any age - the odds of living onward from that point aren't favorable in the U.S. of A. Quality of health care is NOT about life expectancy.

E. No effort at all to justify paying twice as much for our substandard care? Really? Not even a repeated brain fart from Limbaugh?

kernal 4 years, 1 month ago

There are too many non-elderly people on Medicare and Medicaid who should not be. People who have health problems because they are too fat and refuse to loose weight because they would loose their benefits, people with diabetis who refuse to follow the diet and exercise because they would loose their benefits, people who receive benefits because recreational drug use caused their health problems.

There are too many receiving benefits who would not need them if not for their previous and current bad habits.

jafs 4 years, 1 month ago

You can't get Medicare coverage until you're 65, so your comment is more properly directed only at Medicaid.

kernal 4 years, 1 month ago

Persons under the age of 65, who have been on Social Security or Railroad disability for at least two years, qualify for Medicare.

jafs 4 years, 1 month ago

Really?

Do you have a link for that?

Liberty275 4 years, 1 month ago

You can get medicare if you qualify for SSI before you are 65.

oliveoyl 4 years, 1 month ago

It's LOSE not LOOSE. So many people on this forum make this mistake and it's driving me crazy! No offense. ;)

http://www.elearnenglishlanguage.com/difficulties/looselose.html

kernal 4 years, 1 month ago

None taken oliveoyl. Unfortunately, sometimes my fingers move faster than my brain and at others times, vice versa. LOL!

oliveoyl 4 years, 1 month ago

I hear ya. I do similar things too. Just keep noticing this one. LOL!

kernal 4 years, 1 month ago

Gandalf, maybe you missed my point. There are people receiving benefits who don't really need them. I totally agree and know there are many many younger people who need and should receive these benefits. KNI patients as an example.

I could go on for hours about the number of people who have had to be wheeled into court on gurneys for their hearings on SS disability approval or those who died waiting. It's horrible.

The entire Social Security, Medicare & Medicaid system defintely needs some tweaking if it's going to be there for generations to follow.

tbaker 4 years, 1 month ago

Most Americans simple don't care enough about these sorts of things until disaster is obvious and imminent. MEDICARE and these other entitlement programs need to actually begin failing before most Americans will care enough to act. Ms. Jackson clearly is a thinking person and one who represents a huge constituency who we all will be hearing a lot more from very soon. They can see the inevitable failure of these programs looming and they want to make sure and get their benefits before the whole thing goes down the drain. They talk about the "success" of government programs and what is "fair" - this of course is code for "I'm gonna get mine!" She reminds me of the woman being interviewed last year who was in a hand-out line to "Get me some Obama money." This breed of conceit is what you get when you create a world where the federal government cares for all of us at the expense of an ever-shrinking minority of taxpayers. She should consider a version of "success" where each American is sufficiently empowered to take care of themselves, and the rare exception is provided a no-frills safety net to tide them over until their self-sufficiency is restored.

jafs 4 years, 1 month ago

Most Americans simply don't care enough about too many things, until something disastrous happens.

monkeyhawk 4 years, 1 month ago

Something disastrous happened a couple of years ago. People really care - witness last Nov.

monkeyhawk 4 years, 1 month ago

This is too good not to repeat it: (credit me)

Look at this one, just fresh:

"New Obama waivers go to Nancy Pelosi's district. Will media notice?

As NewsBusters previously noted, there were 204 ObamaCare waivers issued in April, and almost 20 percent of them went to establishments in former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's (D-Calif.) San Francisco district.

Pelosi’s district secured almost 20 percent of the latest issuance of waivers nationwide, and the companies that won them didn’t have much in common with companies throughout the rest of the country that have received Obamacare waivers.

Other common waiver recipients were labor union chapters, large corporations, financial firms and local governments. But Pelosi’s district’s waivers are the first major examples of luxurious, gourmet restaurants and hotels getting a year-long pass from Obamacare.

For instance, Boboquivari’s restaurant in Pelosi’s district in San Francisco got a waiver from Obamacare. Boboquivari’s advertises $59 porterhouse steaks, $39 filet mignons and $35 crab dinners." Read more: http://newsbusters.org/blogs/noel-she...

jafs 4 years, 1 month ago

Thanks.

The article of course doesn't say what rc would like it to say.

The waiver is "partial", and consists only of lowering the requirements from 80% to 75% for the amounts spent on actual medical expenses.

And, it just gives insurers a bit more time to get up to the 80% guideline.

Not really that big of a deal, I'd say.

monkeyhawk 4 years, 1 month ago

Hey jafs - I sourced mine. Ain't got nothin to say about it??? Can't defend your Pelosi?

jafs 4 years, 1 month ago

I don't know what post you're referring to.

And she's not "my" anything.

rc's source shows that the change in question is quite minor, and certainly doesn't mean anything significant.

See my above post.

jafs 4 years, 1 month ago

I clicked on your link and the page could not be found.

And, the website was entitled something like "busting liberal..."

Seems like a rather biased source to me.

monkeyhawk 4 years, 1 month ago

Worked for me a bit ago - obviously.

What it says exactly is: "NewsBusters Exposing and Combating Liberal Media Bias"

Don't you believe in suspending judgement or do you have a bad case of confirmation bias?

Anyway here is another link.

"Nearly 20 percent of new Obamacare waivers are gourmet restaurants, nightclubs, fancy hotels in Nancy Pelosi’s district"

Read more: http://dailycaller.com/2011/05/17/nearly-20-percent-of-new-obamacare-waivers-are-gourmet-restaurants-nightclubs-fancy-hotels-in-nancy-pelosi%e2%80%99s-district/#ixzz1Me8fZhqU

I am sure that this source will not please you either, so if you don't mind, enlighten us as to what sources you feel credible.

jafs 4 years, 1 month ago

Obviously, that source believes that there is liberal bias in the media that needs "exposing and combating" - hardly a neutral source.

I'll try your other link and see if it works.

jafs 4 years, 1 month ago

Ok - that one worked.

What do you think it means?

jafs 4 years, 1 month ago

Read the article you linked to.

I explained exactly what the change is - it's a change from 80% to 75% for the requirement involving how much is spent directly on health care by insurance companies.

In your link, there's a link to the complete story, which is where I found the information.

George Lippencott 4 years, 1 month ago

Liberty One says: What about the people paying the bill? Seniors have voted themselves into this national debt and now they want the younger generation to pay for all their spending--past, present and future”

Please provide details on how seniors did that. SS has been around since the thirties. It has been updated but the basic program has remained consistent – no great senior theft – those on it today were not yet born when created. Basic Medicare came about in the sixties and has remained consistent – those on it today were in their thirties when it was created as part of the great society – who was it that caused its creation?

Most seniors I know were forced into social security, paid what the were told and now receive it per the rules they did not make. Medicare is kind of the same. Because it is such a poor program many seniors have long planned to have a supplement to avoid bankruptcy – there is no cap and you cost share at 20%. Just about all private insurance becomes second payer to Medicare when you turn 65 – the senior has no choice even though they may have been paying into that insurance program most of their life.

Why don’t you help all of us and do the homework on how SSI and disability got added to SS and who pays. You might note that Medicare part B (doctors) is means tested and expensive for what one gets. You might note that Medicare Part A (hospitals) has been a political football as the costs of hospital care has escalated (not because of seniors). You might look into who pays for the tie between Medicare and disability,

IMHO all these programs have become a funding source for special interests that have driven up the costs of the programs. Seniors did not drive those adds and are not specifically the recipients of them.

It never ceases to amaze me how we lump a bunch of different goodies under one title and then blame seniors for the mess that has resulted.

jafs 4 years, 1 month ago

It's not seniors that have voted to increase spending and cut taxes, it's politicians.

Republicans generally vote to decrease spending and cut taxes, while Democrats generally vote to keep/increase spending and increase taxes.

The fact that politicians on both sides can't manage to balance a budget is the problem.

And, before you recommend that people vote for Libertarians, maybe people aren't aligned with that party. What should conservatives do if they believe in the traditionally conservative values of fiscal conservatism and they see that Republican politicians don't live up to it? Or liberals that believe in liberal values but would like balanced budgets, and see that Democratic politicians don't live up to it?

jafs 4 years, 1 month ago

What's your suggestion - everybody should vote Libertarian?

That's probably not at all realistic, since most people don't agree with libertarian philosophy.

jafs 4 years, 1 month ago

Ok.

So, Obama vs. McCain - what's your pick?

Holland vs. Brownback?

jafs 4 years, 1 month ago

Ok.

Hillary Clinton and Obama were the choices in the primaries - what's your pick there?

We're all responsible for our own decisions.

But in politics, one often has to make choices with no uniformly positive results.

jafs 4 years, 1 month ago

And it seems a little ironic that you, who always claim government isn't society, want to blame society for the actions of the government.

How do you reconcile those two views?

jafs 4 years, 1 month ago

How is it my fault what the politicians do if they're a separate group with their own agenda, and not representative of the people?

jafs 4 years, 1 month ago

That's a rather pat answer.

If we elect people, and those people don't adequately represent us, what then?

Elect other people, and they don't either.

I suppose you're advocating some sort of 2nd amendment solution?

George Lippencott 4 years, 1 month ago

Liberty One Says: This didn't happen overnight. Instead of paying higher taxes or cutting spending, for the past 30 years they have just borrowed the money, putting that responsibility on future generations to pay. Now young people have to pay for the last 30 years of borrowing AND these bankrupt entitlement programs?

Liberty One does not Say: How seniors drove all of this - just another rant blaming one group for the actiosn of all of us - actions taken legally as the majority.

The fiscal problem is really quite simple. If we want it we need to pay for it - and if we pay we need to do that more equitably - evryone pays some and the rich pay their fair share. If we don't want it we get rid of it. Not sure we all feel that we neeed to subsidize as much as we do - favors some at the expense of others.

George Lippencott 4 years, 1 month ago

Excuse me but there were a lot of things you enjoy (young people) Medciaid, CHIPS, Pell Grants, Government scholarships, world c lass health care, school computers Interstate system, internet (need I go on) that were not available to us oldsters.

Somebody (not me) decided to pay for children when parents can not, somebody decided to pay for special needs kids, somebody decided to bribe business to build wind farms, somebody decided to fight three wars, somebody decided to move from a fee for service medical system to an insurance based system (need I go on)

Sounds to me as if the guilty includes all of us (including your generation).

LO just anty up as the rest of us have.

If we had not spend the trust fund to buy you all of that our SS would be pre-paid and only yours would require your contributions (yes SS is available for you).

Carol Bowen 4 years, 1 month ago

Well written and straight to the point, Moderate. So, Liberty One, what is your plan for your old and frail years? Do you really think you will be able to afford medical care when you no longer have a viable income?

George Lippencott 4 years, 1 month ago

It costs the rest of us to fill in the ditch. In your case we will just let you rot and sue your heirs for the social costs.

George Lippencott 4 years, 1 month ago

Hey, I am on SS and medicare - consequently too frail to do anything but shovel snow.

Are you asking for a FREEBE???

Liberty275 4 years, 1 month ago

My plan is a bottle of benzos and a litre of single malt scotch. My life insurance will cover the cremation and my wife will be happy to dispose of the ashes in the Gulf of Mexico.

I don't intend on ever being frail, even when I get old.

George Lippencott 4 years, 1 month ago

AND SOCIAL SERVICES WILL COVER the trip to the Mexican beaches (see WSJ this AM)

Liberty275 4 years, 1 month ago

What do Mexican beaches have to do with anything?

George Lippencott 4 years, 1 month ago

LO

Exactly what is your issue?? Seniors? Government expenditure? Size of government? Your need to pay for it? What have you? You are all over the map.

We have run up a large debt. A goodly portion is the result of recent unfunded wars, unfunded expansions of social programs and large tax exemptions to business.

SS has been paying for itself and would have continued to do so had OUR LEADERS NOT SPENT THE TRUST FUND. I BET YOU WILL Not find a single seniors’ fingerprint on that call. You want to blame me for that??

Medicare is more problematic. We only pre-paid hospitalization. That too has a trust fund that is broke. The REASONS ARE COMPLEX AND PERHAPS YOU SHOULD DO A BIT OF HOMEWORK and SHARE THEM instead of ranting.

Seniors pay a fair amount for doctors’ care under Medicare and they will pay more in the future. This payment is means tested. If and when you can sort out the actual cost of care versus the social service component maybe we could agree on even greater payments in the future. Increasing senior’s payments by upwards of 60% when they are no longer employed is a bit much!

Of course, the government has used Medicare as a component in the agreements it has struck with its' employees. So you propose defaulting on those agreements?

You have not posted a single substantive piece of data. You just want to complain that you are being asked to contribute to the cost of government when everyone else already does (at least the half of us that pay taxes). Not exactly the moral high ground, is it?

George Lippencott 4 years, 1 month ago

LO

And the rest of us have not? We all pay taxes and I have been paying them for almost 50 years. The tax rate that the wife and I paid before Reagan was - well higher than now. You, my friend are getting a break!

This is about you - and your complete lack of understanbding of history. Pay your due and shut up!

Jimo 4 years, 1 month ago

A small preview of the generational war the GOP aspires to. One generation isn't going to get nothing for themselves while footing the bill for others.

beatrice 4 years, 1 month ago

LO: "I paid for my own education, mostly through scholarships."

This is akin to someone saying they paid for their own food, mostly with foodstamps.

beatrice 4 years, 1 month ago

The nature of the gift doesn't change the end result. If someone takes a voluntary hand out, be it for clothing, a box of food, foodstamps, condoms from a bowl, or an education, that person can't then say they paid for what was given them. It doesn't matter if it was charity from a church, a gift from a wealthy donor, or a government hand out, all represent something provided by someone or something else.

You may not care for my analogy, but if you didn't personally pay for something, then you didn't pay for it. Even this "sick mind" can see that basic fact.

jafs 4 years, 1 month ago

You're conveniently missing her point, which is a good one.

If you got scholarships, you can't claim to have paid for your education yourself, since the money came from somebody else.

jafs 4 years, 1 month ago

"I paid for my own education, mostly through scholarships"

Is that an accurate quote?

jafs 4 years, 1 month ago

Come on.

If you said that, and I think you did, having looked back at the thread, then you did indeed claim to have paid for your own education, even though that's not really warranted by the fact that you mostly had scholarships.

I'm not beatrice, so I don't want to have the conversation you should have with her instead of me.

jafs 4 years, 1 month ago

I jumped in because I thought there was a good point there, that you wanted to ignore.

And, your responses to me have confirmed that.

For somebody who values honesty, you seem to have a bit of trouble here with that.

The fact that I thought there was a good point there doesn't mean that I agree with everything else she has, or will say, in this thread.

beatrice 4 years, 1 month ago

I'm curious LO, but are you aware that many people and organizations that give money for scholarships get tax breaks for their gifts? In case you don't know how this works, it means the taxpayers are the ones actually footing thing bill in the end. Whether it is a direct government expense like foodstamps or an indirect government expense via tax breaks for those donating to scholarships, it is still a government expense. Not all scholarships are this way, but many are. Also, did you pay taxes on the amount of the scholarship as you would have had it actually been money out of pocket (the money having been taxed when earned)? You see, there are many ways the government is footing the bill for your education, which in the end is a burden on the taxpayers.

Either way you slice it, if you were given a scholarship, then you didn't actually pay for your own education. Someone else did, and if you really look at it, it was likely many hard working Americans did. Even simple minds can see this basic truth.

beatrice 4 years, 1 month ago

Now I am "sick and criminal." You really throw out the insults when you are proven to be incorrect.

Anyway, you were given a scholarship, which means you didn't pay for your education. Guess you aren't a self-made man after all.

beatrice 4 years, 1 month ago

Say what you will, you still didn't pay for your own education.

gkerr 4 years, 1 month ago

The present system is not sustainable and not affordable. I want choice for my doctors and nurses and hospitals, not a one size fits all scheme run by foolish politicians and bureaucrats in Washington DC.
The system is set so political cronies are let off the hook of having to comply with the mandates while ordinary folks are stuck with the mess the bureaucrats and social engineers have constructed.
What a fetid boondoggle. The system is being dismantled in England and Canada as it is unresponsive to real needs and unaffordable to boot. Keep Government know it alls out of the health care as much as possible. Gkerr

Jimo 4 years, 1 month ago

The system is NOT being dismantled in England and Canada! ROFL The ONLY issue there is how to make the system more effective.

I can assure you Canadians are fixated on medical disaster stories from the U.S. Wouldn't trade socialized medicine for all the gold in Canada.

One size fits all? No choices? What "choice" do you suppose someone denied of any medical care at all has? The only "one size" to be fitted is the casket. Good lord, the Republican controlled Arizona gov't has actual death panels at work as you blubber away repeating Limbaugh brain farts.

You're either a buffoon or woefully misinformed. (Might help if you turned off Fox Propaganda.) Perhaps you should consider a Canadian vacation. If you dare! Duh, duh, ....duhhhhhhh. Would you live to tell the tale? What would you do if you collapsed in the People's Republic of Saskatachewan, where they don't even send you a medical bill!!!!!!

God, your funny.

Jimo 4 years, 1 month ago

Three funny points from the WSJ:

  1. Consternation that Democrats would tell voters what the GOP proposes to do with Medicare. "MediScare" scream the headlines! Or as Quitter Palin would say: ‘I just hope the lamestream media won’t twist my words by repeatin’ em verbatim’.

  2. Horror that the Mittster, GOP front-runner, keeps defending the "mandate" to pay for health coverage. This despite the fact the WSJ--just like most of the Republican Party--favored such mechanisms a few decades back.

  3. Apoplexy that Gingrinch would tell the truth about the fraudulent, mean-spirited, abolishment of Medicare by the GOP. How the Republicans managed to paint themselves into a deeply unpopular, extremist position of demanding all good Republicans endorse this 'Ryan' travesty, this war on their own elderly base, I'll never know. But hello 2012! Welcome, Speaker Pelosi. Three dozen freshman House Republicans running in Obama districts, already the walking dead. As one Tea Party leader candidly remarked last week "We're working on a better vetting process so we only support intelligent candidates in the next election cycle."

seriouscat 4 years, 1 month ago

from where I'm sitting Obama 2012 is a shoe-in. He plays ball. No one who doesn't play ball will ever, ever become POTUS.

Commenting has been disabled for this item.