Before I get into the meat of this piece, I want to share a great article from the American Spectator about the recent healthcare ruling my colleague wrote about yesterday called “The Legal Future of Obamacare” by Peter Ferrara. It’s a great explanation of the ruling and the journey this middle finger to our Constitution called a bill is on as it heads through the courts.
Next, I would like to share a conversation I had via email with a liberal family friend who also works for a Democratic member of the House who actually voted against the healthcare bill but then refused to vote for repeal just a few weeks ago. I was going to write a similar piece to this but I figured I’d share this instead. Enjoy.
Rational Voice January 20 at 12:07am
I’m confused…why did Rep XXXXXXXXX vote against the healthcare bill back in March but then not vote for repeal now?
Democratic Staffer January 20 at 8:01am
You are correct XXXXXX. My boss was against scrapping the bill entirely, b/c starting over now could delay necessary health care reform for years. This thing is going to blow up if we don’t get it fixed. We don’t have three or fours years. Medicare is a huge problem. He felt that the bill had no chance of becoming law and theres enough problems without spending a bunch of time on something that not going to happen. My boss is willing to work with Republicans in the future as they try to strike down “problem” statutes in the existing legislation. Things that we would support, getting rid of the individual mandate that requires people to purchase coverage and removing a tax requirement for businesses to report transactions of more than $600. He also wants to see language added to the bill to make it clear that federal funding can’t be used for abortions and the legislation is missing a “cost control” provision to deal with rising prices. The Health Care Bill as my boss stated in March,” as some good things in it, but it had more bad things in it.” that was why he voted against. Today we start going treaking the bill. On a personal level, the Health Care bill had a good thing it for XXXXX [daughter], I was able to put her back on my health insurance until she 26, she only had major medical for coverage, for she had to go off my policy when she turned 22.
Now you know the rest of the story.
Rational Voice January 20 at 8:30pm
Scrapping this bill wouldn’t set back healthcare reform for years. There is a simple fix that can be done right now and it’s called repealing the McCarran-Ferguson Act of 1945 (I’m willing to bet 99% of the members of Congress have never heard of this act) which for some asinine reason prohibits interstate competition in the healthcare world. I know people bash “big business” all the time but if these health insurance providers were able to form large multistate companies, I guarantee you healthcare costs would be much lower than they are today. Just look at the car insurance world. There is a great amount of competition there and people can get custom policies that fit their needs for an affordable price. Why shouldn’t health insurance be the same way? I would much rather have companies that offered a la carte type policy options that allow people to get insurance for what they need/want instead of males needing being forced to by policies that also cover mammograms and gynecologic visits. If we had such a system, I guarantee you that you would have to worry about Katie not being able to find affordable health insurance and instead needing to be put back on your policy.
Furthermore, why not look at the FDA and the red tape they impose on pharmaceutical companies who are trying to get new drugs on the market? I heard somewhere that there are currently about 2,000 generic drugs awaiting approval by the FDA which will be much cheaper than the name brand ones out there, helping lower the cost for any one who uses those drugs. Instead now they’re worried about this new food safety bill when we don’t have a problem at all that needs addressing in that regard.
Or how about tort reform so these pharmaceutical don’t get sued for millions and millions of dollars every time one or two patients die from complications out of the millions that use a drug? Shit is going to happen. It’s a sad, unfortunate reality that people need to come to terms with. Biting the hand the feeds you (or saves/improves countless lives) isn’t the way to go about making things better. If anything, allowing such lawsuits to go forward all the time only hurts more people in the long run because the FDA may pull the drug despite the fact that it could help thousands of people lead healthier lives. And while I’m on this tangent, why not malpractice reform so the doctors don’t have to worry about paying so much for that insurance? It’s a cost they undoubtedly are forced to pass on to their patients, increasing costs again. They’re human. They’re going to misdiagnose things. They’re going to make mistakes that kill. It’s going to happen. Hold them responsible when they are indeed negligent though, not when they make a mistake in the complicated world of medicine.
Also, we need to reform Medicare/Medicaid. When those programs were implemented to help the poor back in the 60s they actually made healthcare costs rise, which actually did more harm to those who were just barely able to afford insurance in the first place, leaving them without insurance if they didn’t have enough to afford the increasing prices but weren’t poor enough to qualify for those new programs. It’s unintended consequences like these that are going to happen on an even larger scale with this healthcare monstrosity. Costs are already starting to rise with this and guess what, the whole preexisting conditions deal is bullshit. Nobody is going to buy insurance if they can get it after the fact. And when nobody buys it until after the fact, the insurance companies won’t have any money to pay out for claims. And they’ll still be the bad guy instead of the people who wrote such a ridiculous provision into this God-awful law.
I never got a rebuttal to any of the points I made there, maybe because these people refuse to accept the reality we have to face. And I’d like to add into my arguments against Medicare and Medicaid that after Rush Limbaugh thought he was having a heart attack a little over a year ago, people wondered about how much he had to pay for his treatment out of pocket because he doesn’t have health insurance. Rush refused to give a number but a cardiologist called into his show and said that had he had Rush come to him, he would have ran a series of tests for him, just like he’d do for anyone with the same symptoms. He said that some of these tests cost $3,000 each. Furthermore, he stated that Medicare would reimburse him only $1,000 for the test, and Medicare only $75!! It’s no wonder healthcare costs are rising. Doctors can’t just eat those costs; they’d go out of business if they did. So to make up for the losses imposed on them by government healthcare, they pass the cost along to those who can actually pay, driving up the costs for those patients and everyone who has health insurance, thereby ensuring it’s unaffordable for those with less money. Again, it all comes down to Liberal Consequences. They create a problem by trying to “solve” another.