Patterico's Pontifications

8/17/2009

The Public Option – Individual Mandate Two-step

Filed under: General — Karl @ 7:04 am

[Posted by Karl]

Michelle Malkin thinks that the Obama administration’s softening on its proposed government-run health insurance plan is more a trial balloon than a white flag. Indeed, this weekend’s statements were not all that newsworthy. As Marc Ambinder correctly notes, Rahm Emanuel has known for months that even a neutered public plan with a trigger mechanism did not have the votes to pass. The administration will likely be forced to sneak in public insurance under the rubric of co-ops.

However, the latest “trial balloon” here was likely an unintentional blunder. The public opinion polling on ObamaCare — particularly its more high-profile elements — now generally takes the form of “Democrats support it, but not Republicans or unaffiliated voters.” Many on the Left equate healthcare reform with the “public option” trojan horse (and are suspicious of the co-op trojan horse), so to ditch it now would cause support for their campaign to crater. The Democrats simply cannot afford to abandon the government-run plan so soon.

The other big reason the Democrats cannot ditch the “public option” yet is precisely because it would allow ObamaCare critics to concentrate their fire on other key elements of their plan. That includes the co-op idea, though it should be fairly easy to discredit as the “public option in sheep’s clothing.” In the medium-term, it may be more significant that the “public option” helps the Democrats deflect fire from the individual mandate.

Killing the public plan is essential, but not enough to prevent government-run health care. Ramesh Ponnuru makes the case for focusing on the individual mandate:

First, the basic outline of Obamacare can survive ditching the public option. It can’t survive ditching the individual mandate. You can’t, for example, have a ban on insurers’ taking account of pre-existing conditions without such a mandate.

Second, the polling on an individual mandate suggests that it’s less popular than the public option — and just plain unpopular. I keep pointing out that Obama was able to win the Democratic presidential primaries without embracing a mandate, which ought to tell us something about the politics of the issue.

Third, my impression from talking to Republican congressmen about the issue is that to the extent they support this idea, that support is an inch deep. It rests on misunderstandings that are easy to clear up (notably the notion that a mandate would reduce insurance premiums by making the uninsured pay their fair share).

Fourth, we have already made our case on the public option, and we haven’t made it on the mandate.

Fifth, there are interest groups willing to keep making the case on the public option — but most of these interest groups are for the mandate since it would improve their bottom lines (at least in the short term).

Ponnuru is not entirely correct on all of those points. The Right needs to keep the heat on the “public option” — as toppling it would greatly demoralize the Democrats — but the Right also needs to start attacking the individual mandate. Though you can find polls like Quinnipiac that show opposition, you can find recent polls (e.g., Gallup and Pew) supporting the individual mandate. However, as with the politicians, that support is about an inch deep. The individual mandate gets very bad numbers if people are told there will be fines for those who do not buy insurance (EBRI and NBC/WSJ) or that some could be required to buy insurance they cannot afford or do not want (KFF). And there is a real-world example of these problems with the individual mandate:

Massachusetts has a mandate right now. They have exempted 20 percent of the uninsured because they have concluded that that 20 percent can’t afford it.

In some cases, there are people who are paying fines and still can’t afford it, so now they’re worse off than they were. They don’t have health insurance and they’re paying a fine.

That was candidate Barack Obama’s opinion. The Right needs to remind the public of this early and often.

–Karl

334 Responses to “The Public Option – Individual Mandate Two-step”

  1. The pubic option was but one aspect to oppose. There are still plenty of wealth destroying dirty little socialisms left that they wish to foist on everyone. Vigilance is called for.

    DR. JD (28e6e6)

  2. Opposing the mandate should be a high priority for conservatives, it goes against conservative principles to force people to spend their money on something they don’t want to buy.

    A mandate also is a tax on those choosing to do without insurance to the extent that their premiums exceed their claims… and we’re not supposed to be in favor of increasing taxes, even if our premiums get lowered a bit as a result of forcing young healthy people to buy health insurance.

    (Anticipating the rebuttal), it isn’t analogous to auto insurance, as nobody is forced to buy comprehensive coverage, they’re forced to buy liability coverage to protect others against their negligence on the road.

    steve sturm (369bc6)

  3. To go with the auto insurance (comprehensive vs. liability ins) analogy above, I think I could be for a mandate for catasrophic care coverage.

    this is b/c when a healthy young individual who has no insurance suddenly gets very sick, or has a serious injury not covered by any other insurance, hospitals are generally required to treat them even though they have no insurance. who picks up that cost? Teh rest of us. That is somewhat akin to requiring drivers to have liability insurance.

    I would be just as happy going the other route, which is allowing hospitals to decline treatment to people who cannot pay or are uninsured.

    Monkeytoe (e66874)

  4. I guess I am still unsure why health care is suddenly considered a “right”.

    If health care is a right, why isn’t food? or shelter? Or clothing? or heat?

    Either we are free individuals capable of living our lives or we are wards of the state. We cannot be both. If the state is responsible for everyones welfare, then we belong to the state.

    Monkeytoe (e66874)

  5. From my days in insurance, the idea that insurance cannot address pre-existing conditions, and would be forced to write everyone at the same rate is a receipe for bad bad bad things.

    DR. JD (5e5cad)

  6. I guess I am still unsure why health care is suddenly considered a “right”.

    It’s considered a right because society can’t/won’t tell people ‘sorry, but we’re not going to pay to cure you of your illness/injury, now be nice and crawl off somewhere to die’. And by the same standard, food, shelter, clothing and heat are also rights.

    steve sturm (369bc6)

  7. Many people misunderstand the issue of the “right” to healthcare. There is such a right and it is in the California Welfare and Institutions code, section 17000.

    17000. Every county and every city and county shall relieve and
    support all incompetent, poor, indigent persons, and those
    incapacitated by age, disease, or accident, lawfully resident
    therein
    , when such persons are not supported and relieved by their
    relatives or friends, by their own means, or by state hospitals or
    other state or private institutions.

    For health care specifically:

    17000.51. (a) Notwithstanding the decision in Caulk v. Superior
    Court, CO15355, June 27, 1997, a county’s discretion granted pursuant
    to Section 17000.5 to include, as part of a general assistance aid
    grant, in-kind aid with a monthly actuarial value of up to forty
    dollars ($40) per month of medical care, was not intended, and shall
    not be construed, to do any of the following:
    (1) Satisfy, in whole or in part, the duty of a county or a city
    or county to provide health care services to indigent and dependent
    poor persons under Section 17000.

    (2) Permit a county or a city and county to cease providing health
    care services under Section 17000.
    (3) Affect the eligibility of indigent and dependent poor persons
    for health care services under Section 17000.

    The county hospitals are the way this requirement is met. Orange County snookered the U of C into buying Orange County Hospital back in 1972 or so but the county still has the obligation to provide care.

    I’ve known this since I was a medical student. The tragedy, one of many, in the whole health care story is that the county hospitals were doing a good job of caring for the poor in 1965. Johnson’s Great Society undercut the county hospitals in two ways. One, Medicare allowed poor people over 65 to join mainstream healthcare and nobody begrudged that.

    Two, Medicaid refused to pay county hospitals for care beginning the funding crisis that continues to this day. They were supposed to get “private care” but the payments, even then, were so low that they wound up in MediCal mills run by marginal types. Much of this had to do with the fact that a large proportion of the poor do not plan ahead and have poor health habits. They had diseases seen nowhere else.

    We had a decent single payer system called county hospitals, which worked well for the poor but which was allowed to deteriorate or was destroyed, like “Killer King,” by politics.

    I do not trust the Democrats’ bills and think they are a sham, a bureaucratic structure that will change healthcare by regulation once the structure is enacted.

    Mike K (addb13)

  8. It’s considered a right because society can’t/won’t tell people ’sorry, but we’re not going to pay to cure you of your illness/injury, now be nice and crawl off somewhere to die’. And by the same standard, food, shelter, clothing and heat are also rights.

    really? that makes it a right? And by “right”, I mean something not just that gov’t can’t take away from you, but something that gov’t must provide to you free of charge? So gov’t must now provide health care, heat, cloting, shelter, and food? Where do I sign up? I’m pretty sick of working.

    Monkeytoe (e66874)

  9. I slogged through parts of the House plan. And “slog” is the word. I’m not a lawyer and to dig out the substantive 5-6 words of a 16 line paragraph and then flip back and forth to other sections to find the add-ins and take-outs is one of the most exhausting exercises I’ve attempted this year.

    Among the things that really worries and infuriates me is the number of times the act seems to eliminate court and congressional review in favor of bureacratic control. The other is the number of ways these bureaucrats are allowed to get into my tax returns, my bank account and, I’m sure my medical records themselves.

    Is there still a separation of powers in this country?

    Dennis (34ab0f)

  10. Monkeytoe: The “rights” debate is a red herring. Paved roads are not a right. Neither is fire or police protection.

    But we as a society have decided that we value these government services.

    I think your car insurance/catastrophic care insurance is a good one.

    However, unlike you, I would not feel comfortable with hospitals turning away people b/c they don’t have money.

    That is mainly my personal morals talking, but there is a personal comfort side, too. How many of us want to live in a country where people are left diseased, maimed and dying in the streets? Should car accident victims, for instance, just be left by the side of the road if they have no insurance?

    Many uninsured people only get care via the ER. Trust me, they wouldn’t be there unless it was an emergency.

    And under the present system, which so many people are desperately fighting to keep, we all pay.

    Myron (98529a)

  11. “Many uninsured people only get care via the ER. Trust me, they wouldn’t be there unless it was an emergency.

    Patently untrue as any reception nurse in an ER will tell you.

    SPQR (5811e9)

  12. I meant to say your “car insurance/catastrophic care insurance ANALOGY is a goode one”

    Myron (98529a)

  13. Myron, I have an invitation for you. Many of us have tried to build walk-in clinics to get the non-emergent cases out of the way but they falter on one basic fact. Only the hospital has the legal obligation to take all comers and cannot deny care because of inability (or unwillingness) to pay. The walk-in clinics work for those who are willing to pay. The illegals know that.

    Mike K (addb13)

  14. A rose by any other name?? Michael Tanner of the CATO Institute cautions that opponents of a government-run “public option” should not be fooled by this “compromise.” It’s suggested that these co-ops would be nonprofits, but many insurers are already classified as “nonprofit” companies–including “mutual” insurance companies and groups like Blue Cross. In addition, states already have the power to set up their own health care co-ops and a number already exist. So, if the “new co-ops” are to operate under the same rules as other nonprofit insurers, why bother? Supporters of government-run health care have no intention of letting the co-ops be independent enterprises. In fact, Sen. Charles Schumer (D-NY) makes it clear, for example, that the co-op’s officers and directors would be appointed by the president and Congress. He insists that there be a single national co-op. And Congress would set the rules under which it operates. As Sen. Max Baucus (D-MT) says, “It’s got to be written in a way that accomplishes the objectives of a public option.” If a “co-op” is run by the federal government under rules imposed by the federal government with funding provided by the federal government, that is government-run health insurance by another name. Also check the so called “” Stimulous Bill” death panels already installed and in place”” End run around OUR Constitutional Rights!!!! WAKE UP. They really think WE THE PEOPLE are “TUPID”

    terri (3548ca)

  15. Comment by terri — 8/17/2009 @ 9:53 am

    This will be easy:
    They’ll just nationalize AARP!

    AD - RtR/OS! (a26a7a)

  16. Many uninsured people only get care via the ER. Trust me, they wouldn’t be there unless it was an emergency.

    You will excuse me when I do not trust you, when you are telling a blatant falsehood, no?

    DR. JD (5e5cad)

  17. Super-cache sucks (just not as much as the Obamatrons, are you listening Linda?)!

    AD - RtR/OS! (a26a7a)

  18. Obama softening on the public option? Not a chance. This is only a political head fake.

    Stan Switek (d9d8ce)

  19. I want a public option. Something like but not quite Medicaid in which any American can sign on to, at his or her discretion, at a means-tested cost. A family of four, living below the poverty line, pays nothing. The same family, making $30,000.00 pays one-fourth market rate. Bill Gates pays full market rate. Let’s call it Federal Health Insurance.

    I would also want it to sell co-insurance and prescription drug insurance to people on Medicare. And to Veterans. And to send out salesmen to knock on my door and show me how they’ll charge me less and give me better coverage than my private employer insurance.

    And that’s it. Stop there. Leave all other health insurance out and stop saying “reform”. Personally, it reminds me of the reformatory I almost went to at sixteen.

    97% of the country would support that, I think. And the bill would be maybe five pages long if that. Even my Congressman could read it without his lips getting too tired.

    nk (aa7de7)

  20. Monkeytoe: The “rights” debate is a red herring. Paved roads are not a right. Neither is fire or police protection.

    I think we may be discussing 2 different things. Do people railly think paved roads and fire protection are “rights”?

    You are arguing about things that society has decided gov’t should be doing. That is fine. That is called democracy. I am asking why some people are claiming that health care is a right?

    And, frankly, I have no problem leaving people to die. Drug addicts, people who decide not to get insurance and then want me to pay for their care. Our society already has plans in place for those in need – Medicare, Medicaid and other state plans. We also have tons of charities that help out. So, the irresponsible and lazy who don’t bother to work in order to get coverage, or who are drug addicts and therefore live on the street, don’t necissarily deserve free medical treatment in my book.

    And let’s differentiate between someone being hit by a car and needing immediate treatment or they will die, and someone with a disease. Or someone who comes in to have their cold treated in the emergency room. I think the former society makes the decision to help regardless of payment and I am o.k. with that. ER’s and hospitals should be able to turn away the latter every time.

    I’m not sure that everyone has the “right” to incredibly expensive long-term care. Nor the “right” to care for minor every day concerns (colds, bruises, sprains, etc).

    Health care is not a “right”. In other words, health care was not granted to us by our creater as an inalienable right that government cannot take away. which in turn means that it is not something that gov’t MUST provide. Now, in a democracy people can vote to have gov’t provide health care (avoiding the issue of whether the federal gov’t has constitutional authority to do so). But this entire debate starts from the left asserting that health care is a “right” that every person has and the gov’t must provide.

    I think there is a lot that can be accomplished by debating that point. If it seeps into public consciousness that health care is a “right” that gov’t must provide, we as conservatives have lost a big portion of the battle.

    Monkeytoe (e66874)

  21. Health care may not be a right but the “low-hanging fruit”, whose parents could not afford health insurance, are getting their guts blown out by IEDs in Iraq and Afghanistan. And their brothers and sisters are picking up our garbage.

    We’re America, not Bangladesh, and we’re all in this together. I would probably be taxed on the public option I would support for maybe 10% of what I spend on whiskey, cigarettes, and match ammunition. I’m fine with that.

    nk (aa7de7)

  22. Myron’s remark about people “dying in the streets” is one of the most dishonest comments I’ve ever read.

    Tell me, Myron, in the history of the U.S., has there EVER been a time in which a “significant” number of American citizens were “dying in the streets”.

    The answer, quite obviously, is no. Even before FDR, and Medicare, and Medcaid, American citizens were not “dying in the streets”.

    And there’s no reason to believe that people will suddenly start “dying in the streets” if “health care reform” fails to pass.

    Bubba Maximus (456175)

  23. “They really think WE THE PEOPLE are “TUPID””

    - terri

    Yeah, I wonder why…

    Monkeytoe,

    You would think that being healthy (or, at the extreme end of things) being alive might factor into rights such as “life” and “the pursuit of happiness”.

    Leviticus (f565c1)

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    The Substratum (af9967)

  25. Leviticus, under that logic everything is a “right”. And if everything is a right, then nothing is.

    SPQR (5811e9)

  26. Health care may not be a right but the “low-hanging fruit”, whose parents could not afford health insurance, are getting their guts blown out by IEDs in Iraq and Afghanistan. And their brothers and sisters are picking up our garbage.

    The “low hanging fruit”? I was in the military both enlisted, and then after I got out and went to college I went back in for a stint as an officer. I have no idea what this stupid comment is supposed to mean. Also, when you are in the military, you get health care. And, if you get a permanent injury, you get continued care after you get out for that injury (although this care – thru the VA – demonstrates just how bad gov’t run health care would be).

    The “low hanging fruit” brothers and sisters who pick up our garbage receive excellent health care, as they are municipal employees.

    So, that whole comment was idiotic.

    “We’re all in this together”. so that means I pay for what you want? I have another way for you to phrase that “from each what they can contribute, to each what they need.” Pretty much the exact same statement. That worked out pretty well everywhere it has been tried.

    We have a health care system right now that allegedly is horrible – yet people aren’t dying in the streets. So, are you claiming that if we don’t enact a public option suddenly people are going to be dying in the streets?

    What exactly is that entire comment supposed to be saying?

    Monkeytoe (e66874)

  27. By the way, when i went into the military after high school (enlisted) my parents had very good insurance that would have continued to cover me.

    Monkeytoe (e66874)

  28. You would think that being healthy (or, at the extreme end of things) being alive might factor into rights such as “life” and “the pursuit of happiness”.

    yeah, food, shelter, heat, clothing all go toward keeping someone alive. Are they all rights that the Gov’t should be providing to everyone?

    And, $$ sure makes the pursuit of happiness easier. Is getting $$ a right that the gov’t should be giving out?

    Such asinine arguments from the left. Is there anything you believe the gov’t should not be responsible for?

    Monkeytoe (e66874)

  29. The right to “life” simply means that the gov’t can not have you killed w/o due process and a significant reason. it does not mean that it is gov’t’s job to keep you alive.

    Please read the constitution and some history of the founding of the U.S.

    Monkeytoe (e66874)

  30. Comment by Leviticus — 8/17/2009 @ 10:30 am

    What’s wrong with you, Leviticus? You really think it’s any of the government’s business to keep its people healthy by finding ways to kill germs, discover new medical techniques, have such things as CDC and NIHS? What the hell do you want healthy, productive people around for? Let the weaklings die and make way for the ubermensch who never gets sick. You know, that Socialist Commie, Theodore Roosevelt, started it all when he dried up swamps to stop malaria and yellow fever. And then his cousin had the nerve to look for ways to stop the spread of polio. Fucking Communists.

    nk (aa7de7)

  31. Comment by Monkeytoe — 8/17/2009 @ 10:34 am

    No problem, Monkeytoe. Enjoy what America gave you. And fuck everybody else.

    nk (aa7de7)

  32. Read? Read?
    But everyone knows that those of the Left acquire information by osmossis through their feelings.
    How could you be so cruel as to demand that they actually open their minds and read and learn something from the printed page, a page written by dead, White, European-descended Males?
    Now, that is the definition of cruel and in-human.

    AD - RtR/OS! (a26a7a)

  33. nk, I think monkeytoe’s take is that what America has given him is the opportunity to succeed,
    and that it has been up to him to take advantage of that opportunity,
    and to not assume that success will be given to him…or to anyone!

    AD - RtR/OS! (a26a7a)

  34. He did not fight Indians in Kentucky, and he did not die of malaria in Panama, and he did not get vaporized when a moon mission blew up at NASA. Fuck all these fake Galts.

    nk (aa7de7)

  35. If you had any of the constitutional or historical grounding you accuse me of lacking, you’d realize that the “rights” elaborated in the constitution, elaborately shrouded in the language of divine and inalienable endowment though they may have been, could be accurately paraphrased as “a bunch of really important stuff”. I hate to burst your bubble, but there’s nothing “inalienable” about the right to life or liberty or the pursuit of happiness – it’s being taken from people all the time all over the world. And it’s despicable when it happens. That’s what we’re talking about when we say “rights” – and really, that’s the only meaning of the word: stuff that we find so important that we’re willing to fight King George over it. I happen to think healthcare is one of those things.

    So, it’s despicable when the North Koreans deny their fellow countrymen the right to liberty out of desire for power, and it’s despicable when Americans deny their countrymen the right to healthcare out of sheer miserliness. nk is spot on, as he usually is (in my opinion): I’m willing to give up some of the money I spend on weapons and tequila if that means my fellow countrymen will be able to go to a doctor whenever they feel the need.

    Leviticus (f565c1)

  36. Leviticus, “inalienable” doesn’t mean “can’t be taken away by force.” It means “even if someone tries to suppress you, your right still exists, and law should support your right, not that your ‘right’ should exist only as far as the law allows.”

    steve miller (0fb51f)

  37. You are perfectly free to give up YOUR money to pay for the indigent. What you are NOT free to do is to reach into MY wallet to practice YOUR personal sense of self-righteousness.

    steve miller (0fb51f)

  38. And if freedom of speech is a right like health care (that is, a convenience of modern rich capitalism and free-market technology), then its lack isn’t despicable (e.g., moral). It’s simply too bad.

    steve miller (0fb51f)

  39. nk, I think monkeytoe’s take is that what America has given him is the opportunity to succeed,
    and that it has been up to him to take advantage of that opportunity,
    and to not assume that success will be given to him…or to anyone!

    Comment by AD – RtR/OS! — 8/17/2009 @ 10:53 am

    He was not killed fighting Indians in Kentucky, and he did not get malaria in Panama, and he was not vaporized when a moon mission blew up on the launchpad. These f*****g fake Galts are worse than progressives because they believe that they earned what they, in truth, have inherited.

    nk (aa7de7)

  40. AD-RtR/OS!,

    What on earth makes you assume that I haven’t read the Constitution and all its elemental foundations (the Notes on the Debates, Locke, Montesquieu, etc.) numerous times? Is it because I disagree with you on something?

    Leviticus (f565c1)

  41. You are perfectly free to give up YOUR money to pay for the indigent. What you are NOT free to do is to reach into MY wallet to practice YOUR personal sense of self-righteousness.

    Comment by steve miller — 8/17/2009 @ 11:01 am

    It’s not “my” sense of self-righteousness, it’s “ours”. What kind of country do you want America to be? Like Pakistan, where the the 3% who have all the wealth can only walk outside their homes with a platoon of submachinegun armed bodyguards to protect them from a starving populace?

    nk (aa7de7)

  42. Bubba Maximus: You didn’t understand my argument. I was referring specifically to Monkeytoe, when he said he is not inclined to treat people with no money at our hospitals. The reason we DON’T have people dying in the streets is that few people think like Monkeytoe on that issue.

    I was not saying people would be dying in the streets if we don’t have health care reform. If we don’t have reform, things will continue as is: People with no insurance will use our ERs for care and the rest of us will pay for it.

    Try to understand what people are saying before you go in blasting them.

    Myron (98529a)

  43. I am asking why some people are claiming that health care is a right?

    Monkeytoe: I understand what you are asking, and my response is that it doesn’t make any difference to me what we call it. I don’t think the debate will turn on that question.

    I don’t refer to access to heatlh care as a “right,” and I’m not willing to spend time to defending that. I see it as something a moral and practical nation should do (like police protection).

    Myron (98529a)

  44. No NK,

    Just fuck you and your ilk. Why in your mind does the gov’t have to pay for everything? All those great things you mention that you think led to my success – such as the moon landing – were all done w/o socialized health care. So your very arguments defeat your position – you marxist idiot. Somehow equating fighting the indians and the moon landing with the idea that we have to become a socialist nation and adopt socialized health care is so idiotic as to defy being identified on the moron scale. I’m sure in your marxist view of history there is no individual achievment, only community achievment.

    Despite your belief that you somehow were integral to my success, I made it on my own. I paid for my own college and graduate school, through work and military service.

    If you love gov’t so damn much, donate all of your damn money to it. I can picture you in my mind – you’ve never given a day in your life to anyone else – never worked for charity, did not serve in the military, have never done anything for anyone else, yet you are all too happy to give away other people’s money and believe you are the font of morality and rightousness. You are scum and nothing more. If people like you had your say, we would not have landed on the moon, nor defeated polio, nor won WWII, nor won the cold war.

    I have given of myself to this nation, and to my community doing actual physical labor for various charities. You have done nothing yet deign to preach to me from your marxist scripture. You have no understanding of our nation, nor our history or values. You certainly have never read the constitution or have any understading of that document – yet you deign to preach to me from your marxist scripture.

    You cite platitudes and generalities, none of which have basis in fact. Where were you when we were fighting in Iraq – probably with Code Pink. Yet you now come forth and say “we are one nation, we should pull together and socialize health care.” Were we not one nation when we invaded Iraq?

    You are unpersuasive and insulting and you should really, really just fuck right off. And you can thank me for my service while your sorry fat ass sat on the couch never considering service and yet preaching to others about how we are “one nation” and need to “spread the wealth.”

    So in sum, you are one fucking huge marxist idiot. But thanks for playing.

    Monkeytoe (e66874)

  45. 37.You are perfectly free to give up YOUR money to pay for the indigent. What you are NOT free to do is to reach into MY wallet to practice YOUR personal sense of self-righteousness.

    Comment by steve miller — 8/17/2009 @ 11:01 am

    Luckily that is not literally what is happening. Maybe you should read the documents.

    corrector of steve miller (20cef6)

  46. Ahh Leviticus,

    Like a true marxist, you cannot simply discuss our laws and our country and values, but must argue a world view. Because our constitution does not protect the life of a north korean, it is meaningless. I see your point. B/c of that, we should not abide by our constitution and should become a socialist nation and impose national health care. YOu certainly make a lot of persuasive arguments.

    It is quite clear that you have no understanding of our constitution or our founding. Thanks for making idiotic statements to prove my point though.

    Niether you or your fellow traveller NK has made one argument in favor of socalizing health care, except for calling those of us against it evil and miserly. That is really convincing. I can now why it is such a good idea to nationalize health care. So that we aren’t called names by the likes of you. Makes sense.

    And, I love how you make an argument – in this case that health care as a “right” flows from the right to life and the pursuit of happiness. But when I defeat that argument quite easily, you suddenly pretend that was not the argument you were making. So, so intelligent and persuasive.

    Monkeytoe (e66874)

  47. I appreciate the straw man argument.

    What I don’t appreciate is guilt as a motivator of my action, or even worse, guilt used as a way to rob me of my wealth to pay for your private fantasies.

    Health care itself is not a “right.” It is a Good Thing, and rich, free societies create health solutions based upon the profit motive.

    Saying I have to abandon what I have for some pie-in-the-sky plan to fit YOUR vision is simply theft of my freedom and my wallet. You haven’t come up with a rational explanation; instead, you resort to emotion.

    Pakistan is a dirt-poor country. America is a rich country. Neither has government-sponsored health care to the degree socialists wish, and yet the two countries offer different levels of health care. Why is that? Profit and money and people making their own decisions in America without the government forcing everyone into a one-size-fits-all solution picked by a faceless government bureaucrat who is “just doing his job” as he denies treatment.

    steve miller (0fb51f)

  48. I don’t refer to access to heatlh care as a “right,” and I’m not willing to spend time to defending that. I see it as something a moral and practical nation should do (like police protection).

    Ahh, all of a sudden the left wants gov’t to be the font of morality. Interesting.

    Monkeytoe (e66874)

  49. Are you saying that police protection is a private fantasy? What about fire protection? What about the armed services? Stop using your ridiculous verbs ‘rob’, ‘theft of my freedom’ and get to concrete thinking. You’re playing on people’s emotions instead of discussing the facts, and that *should* be above you, assuming that you are a well-educated and well-spoken individual. If you disagree and you are not either of those things, then please continue to use these ridiculous rhetorical, inflammatory and baseless statements.

    corrector of steve miller (20cef6)

  50. To quote again from Canada:
    “The incoming President of the Canadian Medical Association (CMA) Dr. Anne Doing warned: ‘the system is imploding, we all agree that things are more precarious than perhaps Canadians realize…’ ”

    Google it!

    So yeah, I’m a little skeptical of a solution that simply robs me to provide a failed solution.

    How’s it working in Massachusetts and Tennessee?

    steve miller (0fb51f)

  51. nk seems to prefer a country like NK, where everyone is ‘equal’ and the wealthy don’t own everything (unless your name is Kim). You like spreading the wealth don’t you nk? It’s ‘ours’ you say. Why is it that those who do and create owe you anything? What kind of country do you want to live in? One where everything you do is confiscated for the ‘public good’? Who defines that ‘public good’, progressives who prefer to kill the unborn, the infirm, and the mentally and physically challenged? Your disdain for Liberty is, disdainful.
    By the way, when the tyrants do get control of everyones life (health care and climate change regulations will do just that), you and your leftist friends who aren’t of benefit to the State will be thrown under the bus in a hurry. Like NK, the State will blossom and the people will be nothing more than slaves. Starving, dying slaves. On second thought, nk would do just fine in NK as I’m pretty sure nk would prefer to be a peasant beating guard than a guard fearing peasant.

    Marko (97c5c7)

  52. I’m glad you’re reading me. Now try comprehension.

    The discussion started with “is health care a ‘right’?”

    It is not, and we all agree.

    Since it is not a “right,” then implementing it is a political decision and not a moral one.

    Since it’s political, then deciding to do so means it must be paid for.

    Since it’s going to be applied to people who can’t pay for it (the “poor” and the illegals), the money to pay for it comes from me.

    Since it comes from me without my consent, it is theft.

    I’m sorry to have to spell this out, because the Constitutional guarantees are what I support, not this power-grab fantasy by the left to confiscate money to accomplish nothing.

    My country is already trillions of dollars in additional debt. This Obamacare destroys health care with trillions more in unfunded costs. So yeah, I’m a little upset to the point that I call taking my money to support your political supporters “theft.”

    steve miller (0fb51f)

  53. #35 — Comment by Leviticus — 8/17/2009 @ 10:58 am

    So, it’s despicable when the North Koreans deny their fellow countrymen the right to liberty out of desire for power…

    Speaking of North Korea, here is a taste of some of that “universal” health care so popular among the Obama Administration.

    …and it’s despicable when Americans deny their countrymen the right to health care out of sheer miserliness

    It’s despicable when some Americans try to take from other Americans. Is the government really wise enough to say to one family “you have too much money because:

    a) not ALL your children need to go to college
    b) you don’t need that extra TV
    c) broadband is a luxury
    d) …etc

    Do they really have the right to decide who should earn and who should receive? Is this not what is done in places like North Korea, Cuba, and any of a number of dictatorships?

    Beyond the Freedom and Liberty issues (which to me is more important, nevertheless):

    There are various modes and methods of distributing health care. Socialized medicine is by far the worst. Government controlled health care has always made things worse. The VA (example here) and Medicare (example here) are in need of vast improvements. So why not choose or construct something better (help more people and, at the same time, not penalized those that earn/sacrifice/save)? As Americans, we have the potential to do much better than the pitiful plans and narrow solutions currently in play.

    [note: fished from spam filter]

    Pons Asinorum (20c241)

  54. For a man who as smart as he thinks he is, this “community organizer” has certainly organized the community — against him.

    steve miller (0fb51f)

  55. Oh geez. I’m inflammatory when I describe accurately. What would you prefer? “Involuntary donation”?

    Taking MY money to support YOUR fantasy is theft. You just want me to make you feel good in doing so.

    steve miller (0fb51f)

  56. I will vote for my party and not my constituents.

    See you in November 2010, Mr. Massa.

    steve miller (0fb51f)

  57. You don’t even know which side of this debate I am on Steve. I was just letting you know that using these phrases cheapens your argument.

    corrector of steve miller (20cef6)

  58. Check out Obama’s age here on My Space. He’s 52, not 48!

    More analysis here.

    Official Internet Data Office (73f32b)

  59. Ponnuru is a bloody genius. He’s not just smart he’s like Kathleen Parker smart. You should hope to be as smart as Ponnuru one day after years and years of rigorous training in how to be smart. Look how we tricked Congress into legislating a two trillion dollar deficit by following Grand Master P’s advices!! Less erudite minds didn’t see the brilliance of Ponnuru’s cunning plan but hah! They look so stupid I feel bad for how stupid they look.

    He writes for National Review so you know with a high degree of confidence he’s not a douche.

    happyfeet (d8cd81)

  60. If you want to use emotional language and not facts to support your argument, you will get no sympathy (pun not intended) from me.

    Do I feel sorry that everyone doesn’t have the rich, free life I have? Well, if I had that, maybe.

    I’m just protesting that using guilt to get my approval of your plans is guaranteed to get my dander up to oppose you 100%.

    You are perfectly free to support giving health care for free, but use your own money, not mine.

    steve miller (0fb51f)

  61. Ponnuru graduated from Princeton summa cum laude.

    Official Internet Data Office (73f32b)

  62. Cheapens it how? By bringing into focus the hidden assumption that you can vote to invade my pocketbook, and I should just shut up?

    I don’t agree. Sorry to offend your sensibilities.

    steve miller (0fb51f)

  63. And just where is this duty of mine to fund health insurance, for the indigent or feckless, as broad as that enjoyed by the affluent, to be found? The Constiution? Natural law? A priori intuition? Sacred scripture? The fruit of some convoluted exercise in dialectical materialism, perchance?

    Flint (6fdd8d)

  64. Since it comes from me without my consent, it is theft.

    Steve Miller, I get what you’re saying and the logic of your argument. But doesn’t everyone have things they wish the government would not spend their money on? It’s money taken from them without their consent.

    I know there are some people — not me, just to clarify — who would not pay the military one penny b/c they think there is never justification for war. I’m sure, in their view, their tax money should not go to the V.A., either.

    Are they being stolen from, too?

    Personally, I think the war on drugs, as well as the war on other “personal sins” (prostitution etc.) are a waste of money. If I had my druthers, I wouldn’t spend any of my money on that time-wasting crap. Am I being stolen from, too?

    Since there is no tax universally loved by everyone, then taxation itself is theft under your reasoning, no?

    Myron (98529a)

  65. I am amazed at the number of people that get the vapours when it comes to discussing politics.

    “Don’t be mean” has come to mean “don’t tell the truth.”

    We have Hope-n-Change in the White House who thinks he’s in charge of me (the man forgets he was elected simply as the Chief Executive).

    He confuses those without health insurance with those without health care, over and over again.

    I don’t trust him, and I am experiencing schadenfreude, which is that emotion of watching your opponent knock himself out.

    steve miller (0fb51f)

  66. As to Karl’s post: Let me tell you as a health care reform advocate, that no blow would be more serious than killing the public option. So the fire from your side should remain there, not shift to the individual mandate. Scuttling the public option represents the only real chance of killing the whole plan, which I know is your cherished goal, though I still consider the Dems dropping the whole plan remote.

    If the public option is killed, I think the individual mandate will be fatally weakened without any additional attacks. Liberals will not like the thought of people being forced to give more business to the insurance companies that will be allowed — with no public option — to continue their price-gouging and anti-consumer practices. The public option was the only real check on their behavior.

    I hope Malkin is right on Obama (This marks a first, my hoping she is right about anything.) Today, he says he is still backing a public option. I don’t see where a plan makes any sense without it. But frankly, I don’t trust him on this issue at this point. He has shown with the stimulus and cap-and-trade he is willing to “give away the store” for some phantom goal of bipartisanship.

    I think he underestimated the cowardice of Democrats in Congress.

    My only hope is that the GOP remains rock solid against the co-op plan, too, which will keep the Senate focused on the public option as the only way to pass the bill. The fewer Republicans on board with this bill, the better it will be, IMO.

    Myron (98529a)

  67. Nice sock-puppetry, Myron.

    Pons hit on a great point, that government already has the ability to show they can deliver healthcare efficiently, with great access, at lower costs via Indian reservations, the VA, and Medicare, each of which is an EPIC fail. Until they can demonstrate that they can do the above well, why in the world would we want them to have greater control?

    JD (0e5260)

  68. “Since there is no tax universally loved by everyone, then taxation itself is theft under your reasoning, no?”

    I think you could safely define it as theft when the government takes it from you and gives it to another citizen who is not being paid for a service. Or one could argue it is theft under all circumstances and the goal should be to keep the theft to a minimum. Either or

    Mr. Pink (eae12c)

  69. Phantom goal of bipartisanship? You are freaking kidding, right? Price-gouging? Hyperbole often? People posted links where the health insurers profit margins are 3-4%, but I guess any profit is antithetical to those that wish to foist their dirty little socialisms on the populace.

    JD (0e5260)

  70. “He has shown with the stimulus and cap-and-trade he is willing to “give away the store” for some phantom goal of bipartisanship.”

    That is absolutely insane. That sentence is so far removed from reality that it is an obvious fantasy. Nothing about Obama is bipartisan. How bipartisan is it to have your press secretary call citizens opposed to one of your policies a “mob”? The bipartisan vote was also against cap and trade, the partisan vote was for it. What freakin planet do you live on?

    Mr. Pink (eae12c)

  71. JD: You don’t have much company when you say Medicare is a fail. Or else you don’t know anyone who uses it.

    I grew up in a military town, and though I hear some complaints about the V.A., the main complaint is people trying to get more disability coverage than they have.

    (I also hear complaints about the private hospital here, too. I wouldn’t call that a “fail” either. The care receives positive national attention, and it’s making money hand over fist.)

    If you mean Medicare funding is the “Fail”, that’s another issue that needs to be addressed. That’s different from saying Medicare doesn’t work.

    I’m with you on the Indian reservation care, though. The government has failed Native Americans in every conceivable way.

    BTW, is sock-puppetry any opinion that differs from yours? Does it go the other way? Are you a sock puppet to me?

    It strikes me as a thing a lot of guys say on the Internet, b/c they heard someone else say it and it sounds cool.

    Myron (98529a)

  72. hf, you’re using the Black Adder formulation of cunning right, let’s surrender now. get the formality of the mid term out of the way.

    narciso (996c34)

  73. I find it hilarious that Myron is stating that Obama underestimated the “cowardice” of Democrats in Congress.

    Obama has been careful not to propose any specific legislation himself. He’s the original coward. Obama has been doing no leading at all, just cheerleading from the sidelines.

    The self-delusion of Obama cultists is hilarious.

    SPQR (5811e9)

  74. No, Myron. One being a sock-puppet has nothing to do with whether or not I agree with them. You chose to comment under multiple names. That is all on you.

    So you admit that Medicare funding is already an EPIC fail, yet your solution is to subject more people to a government system? No thanks.

    JD (792e1e)

  75. Teh One™’s plan is a tax, surely.

    I don’t object to taxes in principle.

    I do object to this syllogism:
    1. You support taxes as the price of society and living in a country of laws based on the Constitution.
    2. We want to take over 20% of the economy for false reasons, and by the way your health coverage will be rationed by the government and costs will increase.
    3. Therefore, since 1 and 2, you must support tax increases to pay for health care, and if you don’t, you want poor people to die when their houses catch on fire after the police let criminals go from jails and prisons.

    Role of government:
    Police
    Security
    Defense
    Keeping order

    Not role of government:
    Make it so life is fair and no one feels bad

    You might be more honest if you just told me to shut up and pay my taxes so you feel good.

    steve miller (0fb51f)

  76. By a show of hands, how many people think Medicare is an EPIC fail? Rousing success? How many would voluntarily choose that system over private insurance?

    JD (792e1e)

  77. Mr. Pink: Since some “services” are considered useless, or harmful, depending on who is doing the considering, then I still think we’re back to square one: All taxation is theft, under Steve Miller’s argument.

    Then, we have to go further.

    Ultimately, Miller is arguing that we should not have to contribute to the commonweal. Any time we add more than one person to form a union, whether it be marriage or a city, or a state, or a nation, the respective parties must contribute something to the commonweal for it to work. Usually something valuable, like time, money, effort, emotion, ideas etc. The assumption is that the desire to be a part of this union is worth the contribution.

    Since all taxation, in Miller’s view, is theft, then he clearly does not believe in the concept of people contributing to the mutual benefit of all, the commonweal. (Neither does Monkeytoe, for that matter.)

    Therefore, he and Monkeytoe must be survivalists (though I don’t know if those types would use the Internet, also a common enterprise).

    Or is it anarchists?

    I’m not sure which fits best, but I mean for it to describe a person who does not believe in the concept of society, in the strictest sense. Society cannot be maintained unless someone sacrifices something. Without that contribution — without even a moderate restraining of “me-first” desires — we’re back in nature, the law of the jungle.

    I don’t think that worked so well the first time. Then again, I wasn’t there.

    Myron (98529a)

  78. Super cache is Teh SuxXor

    JD (792e1e)

  79. JD: I don’t know if you work for an insurance company, but here are three quick stories.

    My girlfriend is a UMC preacher. The church pays her medical insurance. In 2006, it was $5,000. In 2009, it’s $10,000. She hasn’t been sick, praise be. Where did that money go?

    I went to a health care town hall in NC. A man said he had been working for some time and his salary had increased 30 percent. He said in the same amount of time, his health insurance has gone up 627 percent. Second question: Where is that big hike coming from?

    CNN did a story about Medicare purchasing from Apria insurance a woman’s wheelchair for $1,200. CNN went online and bought the chair for $350. Third question, very similar to the first: Where did that money go?

    If it’s not gouging, it’s SOMETHING.

    Myron (98529a)

  80. My kingdom for an honest Leftist

    JD (bd7f0f)

  81. this is cool and shows the path for lots of doctors to opt out of Hood Rat’s dirty socialist health care scheme … Hood Rat has a date with Fail no matter how this goes down I think.

    happyfeet (d8cd81)

  82. Myron – I do not, and how would my place of employment effect your anecdotes, which only serve to display your fundamental lack of understanding of insurance.

    JD (bd7f0f)

  83. Not at all, JD.

    You see, insurance companies want to make money. That makes anything they do suspect.

    Of course, I could make the same comments about certain former community organizers and their wives (think about that great hospital job). But then, I am a hater for doubting their selflessness.

    It’s completely different when it is an insurance company, of course.

    Besides, government does everything so well. And they always look out for other people. And they never, ever feather their own nests for personal gain.

    Better?

    Eric Blair (0b61b2)

  84. Myron,

    I appreciate that you skimmed my words. But allow me to summarize my position:

    “Health Care” is not a right
    Using emotion (dead poor people) or strawman arguments (all taxes are theft) does not interest me as a debating tactic

    Yours,

    steve miller (0fb51f)

  85. #78 — Comment by Myron — 8/17/2009 @ 2:08 pm

    Without that contribution — without even a moderate restraining of “me-first” desires — we’re back in nature, the law of the jungle.

    That’s just it — taking from one group of people to give to another group does not really solve anything. Such action takes us back to the “law of the jungle”. Further, it degrades the entire system, reducing quality and capability for all. We have seen this now with several socialized health care systems of various guises; here and abroad.

    If Medicare and Medicare were such raging successes, then we could have used these systems as a model — but the reality is it would never be acceptable because of the inefficiencies and the more than occasional failures of these systems. The VA is in even worse shape (as alluded to above). Even President Obama realizes this as he has used these systems as examples of failure in his most recent town hall meetings.

    Let us hope that we are smart enough to learn from mistakes made. Rather than go backwards — towards socialized medicine in whatever guise and repeat the mistakes that these systems have already made– perhaps our nation should go forward and try new approaches to make something better.

    Pons Asinorum (20c241)

  86. If every American is guaranteed, by the U.S.Constitution, the right to medical/health care, please point out which Article/section/clause in said document specifies said right?
    Mr. Jefferson, in the DofI (which is the founding document of the United States), specified that we are endowed by our Creator…with the right to Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness – he said nothing about the ATTAINMENT of happiness.
    Medicare/Medicaid have an unfunded liability appoaching, or exceeding (it’s hard to keep these numbers straight without a Cray) $50 TRILLION (approx. 3-4Xcurrent GDP). How can any program that has such a large unfunded liability be considered a success? Except as a successful fraud against future generations.

    AD - RtR/OS! (a26a7a)

  87. Comment by JD — 8/17/2009 @ 2:19 pm

    My kingdom for an honest Leftist

    JD, you have to attract them with a “magic kingdom” — the kind where nobody has to work, everyone is “rich”, and cars run on magic. That and a gallon of kool-aid, you are all set.

    Pons Asinorum (20c241)

  88. The VA…
    According to today’s WSJ, Mr.Waxman will now exempt Veterans from having to be included in ObamaCare
    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052970204313604574328481575876894.html?mod=djemEditorialPage.
    They don’t get the great deal that Congress reserves for itself, but it’s better than the sharp stick in the eye that he’s willing to give the rest of you (that’s right, you – I’m a Veteran!).

    AD - RtR/OS! (a26a7a)

  89. Neat. That’s like how in North Korea soldiers are in a higher tier of society with special privileges and stuff. After the stagnation of the Bush years our little country is evolving again!

    happyfeet (d8cd81)

  90. I am still shaking my head over this idiots notion that Obama was ever once bipartisan. Myron is confusing giving a speech with action.

    For example, Obama is trying to pass his cap and trade bill, Obama gives a speech saying that we need to get rid of the old politics of division and be bipartisan blah blah blah, Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid lock Republicans out of room and write bill, bill passes House with no Republican votes and 40+Democrat votes against it, Obama is happy that bill passes the House and praises its passage. In Myron’s world this means Obama is a bipartisan for “reaching out” and the Republicans are partisan for all voting against Obama’s bill.

    Mr. Pink (7841a9)

  91. “Like a true marxist, you cannot simply discuss our laws and our country and values, but must argue a world view. Because our constitution does not protect the life of a north korean, it is meaningless. I see your point.”

    - Monkeytoe

    No. You don’t. You’ve missed my point by an embarrassing (albeit entertaining) margin.

    Conservatives are arguing that since health care is not a “right”, the government has no need to provide it (and indeed no business in providing it in the first place), although they admit that health care is a Very Important Thing. I’m arguing that the word “right” (in terms of those rights elaborated in the Constitution) is a condensed version of the phrase “a Very Important Thing”, and that the government ought to be able to provide Very Important Things for members of the citizenry who can’t provide those Very Important Things for themselves.

    And you’re going to lecture me about values? I mean, I was raised to think that taking care of the poor was a pretty American thing to do, and definitely a Christian thing to do. How were you raised?

    steve miller,

    I ask this in all seriousness, as a point of interest: what would you say that the rights elaborated in our Constitution are, in and of themselves – that is, why is it that they were enshrined in that document in the first place? Take the right to bear arms, for instance – use that one, if you’re willing (and I don’t mean to sound like I’m assigning homework or anything, I’m just interested in your explanation).

    Leviticus (f565c1)

  92. VA pays its physicians about two-thirds market rate but it is very attractive to academic physicians because their salary is not billing-based, they can do their research, and they have first shot at VA research grants. On the other hand, I know veterans who maintain private insurance because they like their private physician and basically use the VA for their drug prescriptions and as backup for a catastrophic event.

    nk (aa7de7)

  93. I was raised to think that taking care of the poor . . . definitely a Christian thing to do

    You have completely forgotten about the separation of church and state.

    Official Internet Data Office (73f32b)

  94. Comment by Leviticus — 8/17/2009 @ 3:46 pm

    When I can build my own car, from ore I mined myself, and fill it with gas with oil I pumped from the ground and refined myself, and drive it on a road I graded and paved myself, I’m sorry to say that I will probably adopt Monkeytoe’s and Steve Miller’s POV.

    nk (aa7de7)

  95. #77
    When Medicare was passed we were told it would not exceed 65 million annually (look it up). It now consumes more than 40 billion annually and is bankrupting the country. So is it an epic failure.

    We’ll most businesses run in that fashion would be declared so by their creditiors.

    Thomas Jackson (8ffd46)

  96. “That’s just it — taking from one group of people to give to another group does not really solve anything. Such action takes us back to the “law of the jungle”.

    - Pons Asinorum

    I actually do understand this argument – that men enter into civil society because that society in its collective sense can protect them and their property in a way that they as individuals could not protect themselves, and allows them to prosper beyond others without the fear of reprisal that they might feel in the State of Nature – I understand that. But is an appeal to basic human compassion really out of line in a situation like this? Because the fact of the matter is that there are plenty of hard-working, tax-paying poor people in this country who are suffering because they can’t afford healthcare (which may or may not have something to do with the skyrocketing price of insurance in reason years). What are we supposed to do for those people? Nothing? That seems callous (though I hesitate to make such an accusation against people I’ve never met).

    So, steve miller: I’m sorry if an appeal to compassion doesn’t interest you as a debating technique, but it seems to me that compassion is the crux of this particular debate, and that glossing over it to avoid messy ol’ emotions is the wrong road to take.

    Leviticus (f565c1)

  97. #92
    Wow talk about an incoherent argument. Gee can you point out exactly where you are guaranteed free medical care. It must be next to the clause that guarantees me a vacation home in the South of France.

    Its interesting that Leftists can’t wait to ban those rights stressed in the Constitution while inventing new ones were even mentioned in Blackstones under the rights of Englishmen.

    So very Obamaish of you.

    Thomas Jackson (8ffd46)

  98. I’m not so sure this is communicable to you.

    Some rights exist without anyone needing to give them value. That is, the right to free speech, or liberty, or worship, or to peaceably assemble. It’s part of being human.

    “Health care” (whatever that means) is a feel-good thing. It doesn’t exist outside a certain level of technology and riches. It’s likely a good thing to have “health care,” but it’s not an inalienable right — meaning, something that exists on its own that cannot be granted or taken away by government action.

    We have gone to war in the name of liberty and freedom. I doubt we’d go to war in the name of “health care.”

    Grouping liberty (for one) with “health care” as good things is accurate, but there are simply categorical differences between the two. Just like loyalty and coloring within the lines. Both are good things, but one is categorically different than the other.

    steve miller (0fb51f)

  99. JD: You don’t have much company when you say Medicare is a fail. Or else you don’t know anyone who uses it.

    Medicare is failing because it overpromised in the beginning and is now slowly collapsing due to the government’s efforts to drag out the collapse. It is now paying doctors about 10% of charges. Many are dropping out and many Medicare patients are having trouble finding a doctor. I have a post on this at my blog. For example, I am a Medicare beneficiary. I see a pain doc every three months for a chronic pain thing I’ve had for 15 years. He bills $140 and Medicare pays $13.90.

    There is a way to fix it; simply set the Medicare payment and allow the doctor and patient to arrange a private agreement for payment over the Medicare allowance. However, that is illegal. For that reason, more and more doctors are dropping out completely.

    Happy, those retainer practices, the ones I’m familiar with, charge about $100/month for physician service. If an internist has a list of 600 patients, that will run a stripped down office (No insurance department) and pay him/her a nice living. Lots of people are choosing to sign up, many because they have few alternatives if they want an internist.

    Mike K (addb13)

  100. The problem with compassion is not that we shouldn’t feel for others less fortunate than ourselves.

    The problem is the dog-in-the-manger approach. You think it’s right to do action X, and I think it’s not. Fine, that’s a disagreement.

    But now you smuggle in “compassion” as a trump card, meaning “I can’t argue on the facts or on the law, but maybe I can make you cry.”

    There is no limit to what you can accomplish if you can use “compassion” as a trump card.

    Some bum on the street is wandering around incoherent. He needs help. OK, I accept that. Now you say, “to be compassionate, he needs a chauffeur, limo, iPod, Brooks Brother suit, free wi-fi, and a dinner pass to Sardi’s.”

    What can I argue against that if you use “compassion” as your trump? Am I heartless to say, “No, that’s not a valid argument. Compassion is an argument for you to personally intervene, but it’s not an argument for you to make me intervene to your cause.”

    If you think “health care” is the right thing to do (and not some imaginary addition to the Bill of Rights), then argue that case. Don’t try to switch the argument by saying it’s a right on the level of free speech or assembly. It’s not, and you’d be laughed out of the agora by the solons.

    steve miller (0fb51f)

  101. “The public option was the only real check on their behavior.”

    Myron – Absolutely. All those fucking regulators in each state are just there for show!

    How can you claim to be an insurance reform advocate and be so damn ignorant of how the industry works?

    Your “price gouging” examples were pathetic. Why don’t you wrack your brain and see if you can come up with some explanations for why rates on those policies went up all by yourself? It’s not rocket science Myron.

    daleyrocks (718861)

  102. I’m sold. Socialism is the answer. It’s worked so well everywhere else, let’s adopt it here. That way we can all have worse insurance at a higher price, but we will be moral and not miserly, we will have compassion and not be cold. Always the best way to make decisions regarding a huge portion of our economy. It makes perfect sense. Let’s jsut call it free. Why not just have the gov’t order doctors to give us all free medical care? That would work just as well.

    The only arguments from the likes of NK and Leviticus are that we are imoral and/or miserly if we don’t agree with them. Not that such programs will work, or be efficient, or are the besgt way to deliver medical care to the most people. Note they don’t make those arguments because they can’t. Instead, they tell us that health care is a “right” that gov’t must provide, found in the constitution somewhere. And that if we don’t agree, we are mean and evil.

    It is the paucity of reasoned arguments from the left which demonstrates the correctness of our side’s position. Telling me I’m immoral or mean b/c I don’t agree with you is not persuasive. I don’t pray to the god of gov’t as you do – so your morality system means nothing to me.

    If we take those arguments away from you – what do you have left? Claiming that blood is going to run in the streets if we don’t socialize health care? Please.

    Health care is not a right. It is not the gov’t’s job to provide health care to anyone.

    Note too that all of their arguments devolve to wealth redistribution, which is the real driving force behind the desire of the left to socialize health care. They know that if they get this passed, they will hook millions on gov’t services, and have more political cover to punish responsible and successful people with punitive taxes to give to those who don’t work. Somehow I’m supposed to feel sorry for those people b/c the U.S. sent men to the moon and without that I would not be successful. I got mine as these idiots would say.

    Well, sorry to break it to you, but anyone can get theirs in the U.S. The opportunity is out there. I see no need to give more than the 50% in taxes I already do, state and fed income tax, FICA, property tax, sales tax, and fees. When are you going to be happy? When are you going to feel you are taking enough from people who work for their income? When is the gov’t big enough nad when do you believe the gov’t has enough control over our lives?

    The same people pushing this insanity probably want to give all illegal immigrants citizenship and have wide open immigration, so that I can continue to pay more and more for their health care. Why do I owe those people anything? Why can’t their countries be responsible for them?

    Let’s look at Mexico. A counry with MORE national resources than the U.S., yet as poor as they come. Why? Socialism. And yet you want that here. it is astounding.

    Monkeytoe (d09d8a)

  103. steve miller,

    First of all, thanks for the answer. I’d still like to know what your definition of a “right” is, but I think you’re correct in saying that the rights detailed in the Constitution are more important than public goods like health care and the maintenance of roads and whatnot.

    That said (and as nk has already asked), do you think that the government has no place in providing public goods? Would you call a standing army a public good, or as a means of facilitating other explicit rights? If the former, could not public healthcare be a public good in the same way? If the latter, could not public healthcare facilitate our rights in the same way?

    Of course systematized healthcare is not a “right”, by your definition, because “systematized healthcare” cannot exist in the State of Nature, independent of some sort of collective endeavor/civil society. And I understand that. But healthcare isn’t some trivial nicety or outlandish privilege, either – it’s far more important than coloring between the lines, and far less to ask of a people than “a chauffeur, limo, iPod, Brooks Brother suit, free wi-fi, and a dinner pass to Sardi’s [for every bum on the street].”

    So what is it? I think we need to accurately frame the problem before we start figuring out solutions for it.

    And while people may not have gone to war with other countries over the state of public health in their own, I would feel fairly safe in asserting that they’ve gone to war with their own government over that particular issue. Since everyone’s so keen on invoking the French Revolution these days, I’ll join in to point out that the “Let them eat brioche” is a decidedly poor response to the people’s lack of bread.

    Leviticus (f565c1)

  104. Even with super-fantastic punitively redistributive health care all of you dirty socialists are gonna get sick and die and so will your dog. You know that, right?

    Bless your hearts.

    happyfeet (d8cd81)

  105. If you think that the Government should undertake Health Care under the rubric of Compassionate Charity, please show us where a Government directed charity has ever been successful without creating a dependent class that becomes a permanent, never-ending drain on the Treasury?
    This is precisely why we had Welfare Reform in the 90′s; a reform, I might add, that is only now being implemented at the state-level in CA, which is another reason for some of the uncontrolled spending in this State.

    AD - RtR/OS! (a26a7a)

  106. “Socialism is the answer. It’s worked so well everywhere else, let’s adopt it here. That way we can all have worse insurance at a higher price”

    Monkeytoe – They just haven’t been doing it right other places. Barry will unveil his magic dirty socialist plan to be administered by his select group of rich apparatchiks to whom it won’t apply and all will be perfect with the formerly racist, nativist, imperialistic, carbon sucking U.S.A.

    daleyrocks (718861)

  107. I get a chuckle when 20-year-olds argue for government health care. These people are almost invariably healthy as a horse, and don’t need health insurance, but here they are, whining and complaining so they’ll get taxed out the wazoo for something they don’t need.

    But if you like it so much, then move to New York, and buy one of the ridiculous private health plans sold by insurers in New York State, which by law are underwritten as if adults of all ages under 65 were all the same age.

    Official Internet Data Office (73f32b)

  108. Healthcare is a service. Period. And the healthcare “reform” that the Left speaks of will take the fruits of people’s labors in the form of taxes and from the doctors and affiliated professionals, their actual labor, for their dirty little socialist endeavors. That is wrong wrong wrong.

    JD (9e0d25)

  109. Has there been anything out of the White House today regarding the public option other than maybe Gibbs hemming and hawing at a press conference? As of last night all we had was Ambinder reporting backtracking from an anonymous White House source. Not a lot to go on.

    daleyrocks (718861)

  110. The Founders were very wary of maintaining a standing army, but recognized the neccessity of having to rapidly call-up the Militia (which was described as all able-bodied men) to respond to National threats:
    Therefore, the 2nd-Amendment, which allowed the People, the right to “keep and bear arms” so that they could appear with those arms when called upon for National Duty.
    It is interesting that in the 1st-Amendment, the proscribement is against “Congress…making any law”,
    but that in the 2nd-Amendment, no mention is made of any level of government, only that “the right to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed”;
    which, in a literal sense, would not require any incorporation ruling from the SCOTUS,
    since the proscription already applies against all forms of government in the United States.

    AD - RtR/OS! (a26a7a)

  111. feets – There’s a special place in heaven just for you is what I think.

    daleyrocks (718861)

  112. For what it’s worth, I rescind any argument I made that could’ve been interpreted as calling healthcare a right in the Constitutional sense of inalienable free speech, freedom to peaceably assemble, or the like.

    That said, I still advocate single-payer healthcare, either as a public good or as a means to securing the rights elaborated in the Constitution, and I think that ignoring the plight of the uninsured in this country is a lot of apathetic Objectivist pap. Ayn Rand sucks.

    Leviticus (f565c1)

  113. Forget it, Leviticus. I’ve heard Rush Limbaugh spout this same rugged individualism bullshit and after turning off the radio in disgust I was tempted to call him and ask him how he managed to perform that operation that gave him back his hearing let alone how he built his radio station.

    These guys think that the opportunity America gave them was dropped from the sky by a divine Providence and not created by the sweat and blood of their fellow citizens.

    nk (aa7de7)

  114. Ayn Rand sucks.

    Comment by Leviticus — 8/17/2009 @ 5:25 pm

    It is amazing how the half-baked fantasies of an alcoholic, drug-addicted adultress have become gospel to some people.

    nk (aa7de7)

  115. Or put another way, I support whichever system of healthcare most efficiently provides care to everyone, whenever they need it, whether or not they have the money to pay for it (for the reasons I elaborated above). If some other system (like Japan’s) does that better than a single-payer system, I’m fine with that. So long as the poor get care.

    Leviticus (f565c1)

  116. If the uninsured have a problem, then it would make marginally more sense to fix that one little problem–instead of reforming all health care.

    But once you subtract young people (who don’t want health insurance) and wealthy people (who are self-insured), and illegal immigrants (who can’t legally buy insurance), you have maybe 8 or 10 million people who don’t have health insurance. One good solution is to enact tough tort reforms, and then all the premiums and medical costs will decline enough so even these people can afford it.

    Official Internet Data Office (73f32b)

  117. Amen.

    DRJ (d8773e)

  118. yn Rand sucks.

    Comment by Leviticus

    I think she might have. She certainly had some young lovers, like Allan Greenspan.

    One very important factor in the cost of health insurance is the state mandate problem. A stripped down, catastrophic policy for a 25 year old should cost about 20 bucks a month.

    Mike K (c818fc)

  119. “ignoring the plight of the uninsured in this country is a lot of apathetic Objectivist pap.”

    Well how about you put up or shut up and post your tax statement from last year with your charitable contributions listed. It is the only way to be sure you are not completely full of shit.

    Mr. Pink (7841a9)

  120. nk, more amazing is how people resort to ad hominem attacks to justify ignoring important lessons on how the real world works.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  121. “These guys think that the opportunity America gave them was dropped from the sky by a divine Providence and not created by the sweat and blood of their fellow citizens.”

    You think citizen=government obviously from your earlier rants on here so I really do not know why you used the word citizen there. The actual definition of “citizen” has alot of what you would call “radical” elements. You should have probably used the words “sweat and blood of their collective efforts” because obviously you think all efforts are collective. According to your logic I should be paying reperations to the first caveman who invented fire and thank him for everything I accomplished in my life. Oh yeah I will be gracious enough to extend my offer to you to post your charitable givings from last year so everyone in here can be sure that you are also not full of shit nk.

    PS I think it is safe to say you can kiss the collective asses of most people on here.

    Mr. Pink (7841a9)

  122. nk,

    I just think it’s hilarious to see people like Monkeytoe call you a Communist. Methinks the lad hasn’t been around these parts too often.

    As far as the Fake Galt temperament goes: here in New Mexico, our lottery money goes into a general college scholarship fund. If you can get a 3.0 GPA your first full-time semester, and maintain a 2.5 GPA for seven full-time semesters after that, those semesters will essentially be paid for by the state.

    I have a different scholarship, so I don’t directly benefit from the Lottery Scholarship, but I’ve seen what a wonderful thing it is to provide a college education to those who couldn’t otherwise afford it. And I would have to say that while a college education is not a Constitutional right, it’s either a public good (at least) or a means to securing other Constitutional rights (at most).

    My point is that it’s difficult in this kind of environment to be so deluded as to think that a man is ever (or perhaps more fairly “often”) self-made in this day and age… but some people still manage.

    Leviticus (f565c1)

  123. Leviticus,

    I think I agree with JD that health care is a service. If it’s not, what’s to keep everything from being a right? I need fresh water to stay healthy so when my pipes break (which they do more and more these days as my house gets older), why shouldn’t the government pay for my plumber? Ditto for the air conditioner guy — it’s unbearably hot where I live — and don’t even get me started on how important the health food store and the grocery store are to my family’s health. You may be able to draw the line but I submit you’re on a slippery slope.

    DRJ (d8773e)

  124. “Well how about you put up or shut up and post your tax statement from last year with your charitable contributions listed. It is the only way to be sure you are not completely full of shit.”

    - Mr. Pink

    Mr. Pink,

    “1″Be careful not to do your ‘acts of righteousness’ before men, to be seen by them. If you do, you will have no reward from your Father in heaven. 2″So when you give to the needy, do not announce it with trumpets, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and on the streets, to be honored by men. I tell you the truth, they have received their reward in full. 3But when you give to the needy, do not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing, 4 so that your giving may be in secret. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.”

    Matthew 6:1-4

    I’m sorry if that strikes you as a cop-out – I can certainly see how it might appear as such – but I don’t answer to you, and I don’t live my life with your codes of conduct in mind. I’m sorry.

    Nice handle, by the way – in light of this particular interaction, especially. I suppose healthcare for the poor is like a tip for a waitress: unnecessary.

    Leviticus (f565c1)

  125. DRJ,

    It’s not a question of whether or not the government should provide a service to everyone, but of whether or not the government should provide a service to those who cannot provide it for themselves. If your question is whether or not I think the government should supply free potable water and groceries and fresh fruit to everyone, then the answer is no. If your question is whether or not I think the government should supply those things to those who cannot provide those things for themselves, then the answer is yes.

    Leviticus (f565c1)

  126. No one, no matter what their circumstances, is denied medical care in the United States. That is the Law!
    We do have, as has been mentioned many times here, have a Health-Care Insurance affordability problem; but, to a large measure, that is a creation of State Legislatures who mandate “Cadillac” programs, or the Tort-Bar, which distorts the medical malpractice segment of health-care.
    Either one of these problems could be dealt with rather simply, and seperately, but will not be due to political considerations.
    And so, instead of doing something simply, and easily, we are trying to remake the universe; which we neither understand, or can define.

    AD - RtR/OS! (a26a7a)

  127. I think “Health Care” is a Good Thing. I appreciate that you recognize it is not a right & we will move on.

    I do not disagree that living in society involves costs which are not directed from inalienable rights. For example, I think the role in government in maintaining public order through a peace officer is a valid one, and does not come directly from a right, except that it exists to protect the practice of a right.

    I don’t think I’m a Randian because I don’t think she understands human nature. She thinks it good. I don’t. I don’t remember where I saw this anecdote, but it referred to the pudding-cup theory of human nature: if I can’t trust my co-workers to leave my pudding cup in the company refrigerator, and these are people that know me and that are “good,” then what hope is there for a system built upon the belief that people are good?

    I think people are flawed and selfish and act from selfish principles. I also think that paradoxically great things come about due to this tendency, such as vicious competition producing a satisfying, middle-class life.

    I see a government that’s strong enough to provide “health care” (whatever that is) is strong enough to consume every penny of free men to satisfy an insatiable lust.

    I don’t agree that the poor don’t have “health care.” What they might not have is “health insurance,” but it’s my understanding that hospitals must support the poor when they show up. You can correct me on this.

    My experience with the government has been that as long as I don’t ask anything of it, I’m left pretty much alone, except for the scalping that occurs at quarterly tax time. (I *so* love paying property taxes to my county when then spend the majority of them on one city that I barely use or visit.) It’s the grift I pay to be left alone in other areas.

    However, when I *need* something from the government, my experience has been mixed, some good, some extremely terrible. My city government, for example, was exceeding helpful during a construction project. But the county and some other state agencies were essentially roadblocks. I ended up abandoning a home because three agencies contradicted each other over its renovation. (Luckily I did not end up losing money, but I was forced away from the neighborhood I expected to live in for the rest of my life.) I’ve been audited twice by the IRS, once for using a copy of a form instead of the original, and once for a mistake on my broker’s account where the IRS thought I had made something to the tune of $1 million on a stock transaction. (That was good for a laugh when I got the audit notice: exactly where in my vast estate of a 3-bedroom rambler had I hidden the profits?) In both cases, there was no ability of the IRS to say “Geez, we made a mistake. Sorry.” In both cases, I had to go through the entire audit process, and document my innocence. In neither case did the IRS say “Thanks. We apologize for putting you through this.” I was at their beck and call because they said so.

    So when the government wants to federalize my health care, I think of my experience with the IRS, and think, “Wow! I could have that level of service and trust with my health care!”

    So, no thanks.

    steve miller (c5e78c)

  128. “…I think the government should supply those things to those who cannot provide those things for themselves, then the answer is yes.”

    I’m unable to supply myself with a new Bertram Sportsfisher; which government office do I apply at?

    AD - RtR/OS! (a26a7a)

  129. Addendum…
    I would remind our friend that the Preamble to the Constitution compels the Federal Government to “…provide for the Common Defense, and promote the General Welfare…”.
    promote…to encourage the existence or progress of; further…

    One is a specific duty, the other an ideal to encourage.
    Too many Liberals confuse the two and seem to think that Welfare is the pre-eminant duty of government, but National Defense is something we’ll do if we feel good about it.

    AD - RtR/OS! (a26a7a)

  130. I think that Audi R8′s should be supplied to all that cannot afford them.

    JD (9cfd42)

  131. But is an appeal to basic human compassion really out of line in a situation like this?

    Yes. Society does not exist to provide compassion. Society exists to provide a set of standard rules by which everyone can live.

    This can be boiled down to contract enforcement – if a contract is entered into legitimately, and one party backs out, then Government is supposed to enforce the contact. It’s other duty is to prevent others from forcing you into contracts without your consent or knowledge (theft). There ends the only valid reason to put a bunch of people in power.

    I don’t think I’m a Randian because I don’t think she understands human nature. She thinks it good.

    No, I don’t think she did. She understood that at their base human beings are greedy, selfish people. Where that becomes a benefit is when we allow people the freedom to succeed. Bill gates didn’t start MicroSoft, nor was Whole Foods started, nor was Ford founded because those men wanted to do something nice for other people.

    They wanted one thing – to make piles and piles of cash. they did so by providing a good or a service others wanted. They priced them so people could afford it (this is debatable where MS is concerned, but generally it holds true), and thus moved product and made their piles of money.

    The Kennedeys didn’t get rich through selfless service to their fellow man, they made it the bootlegging illegal booze. They provided a service (rum-running), and made a hefty profit.

    People that do something solely for “the other guy” quickly burn out. If you start a restaurant, don’t do it because you love people, or because you love serving people, do it because you love to make money, because there will be days where you hate everyone you see, and days you don’t want to see a steak, let alone grill them.

    If you allow people to fulfill a desire to make money, they will make money if they offer services or goods people want at prices they are willing to pay – this is why GM and Chrysler failed (they were unable to do just that). If they gouge or cheat, let the market fix the problem – cheat enough people, and you lose all your customers, and then you are shit outta luck, bubba.

    People aren’t inherently good, and you only end up losing if you assume such.

    I’m not aware of a single time Ayn Rand suggested otherwise.

    Scott Jacobs (d027b8)

  132. PS I think it is safe to say you can kiss the collective asses of most people on here.

    Comment by Mr. Pink — 8/17/2009 @ 5:57 pm

    “Most people”? You Libertarian assholes have never gotten more than 3% of the vote in any election. The American way of life left you behind three generations ago.

    There will be health insurance for people who cannot afford it, whether I “rant” or not. And the question now is one of damage control. A public option that leaves mine and your private insurance alone is the best that we will get.

    nk (aa7de7)

  133. #97 — Comment by Leviticus — 8/17/2009 @ 4:03 pm

    I actually do understand this argument – that men enter into civil society because that society in its collective sense can protect them and their property in a way that they as individuals could not protect themselves, and allows them to prosper beyond others without the fear of reprisal that they might feel in the State of Nature– I understand that.

    Men do not choose to live in a civil society; they are born into a society. As for the protection that a given society might offer, well statistically it is quite bad. There are few free nations, some benign nations, and many totalitarian regimes (and a few defunct states). Living in the US — where Freedom and Liberty center on the individual — is shear chance and should not be taken for granted.

    These Twin Principles have been earned and sacrificed-for. The Founding Fathers took the lessons of history and philosophy and applied them in the founding of the Republic (there first experiment failed). It has not been easy and the sacrifices continue to this day.

    The evolution of “civil society” from Sumaria to the US is extraordinary and proves such concepts as Freedom and Liberty for All is exceedingly fragile, vastly outnumbered and always in danger of extinction.

    But is an appeal to basic human compassion really out of line in a situation like this?

    I believe that taking away wealth and property to give to others will ultimately harm far more people than it helps by allowing the erosion of Freedom and Liberty. Politically, this leads to corruption, protected classes, concentrated power, weakened citizenry, shrinking middle-class, etc.

    But even if that is not a concern, beyond the political is the practical. In practical terms, this will lead to market inefficiencies (all rationing systems do), unfunded expenditures, lowering of quality — in short more will be harmed than helped. Also, once such a system is in place, it is exceedingly difficult to remove.

    We have seen this before; indeed there are many current examples.

    Compassion is vital on this issue, but so is intelligence. Craft a solution that solves the problem, not just redistributes money in accordance with models that we know have already failed.

    Because the fact of the matter is that there are plenty of hard-working, tax-paying poor people in this country who are suffering because they can’t afford health care (which may or may not have something to do with the skyrocketing price of insurance in reason years).

    Then for their sake, let’s reform the health care system so that it works better– as opposed to a socialist form of health care, which has repeatedly demonstrated an inability to solve these problems while decreasing quality and increasing costs.

    Yes, what is going on with the price of insurance — an intelligent question and a good place to start. Rather than villianize and politicize (as our President has chosen to do), an examination of cause and effect would be a wise course of action — where will it lead: tort reform, portability, risk pools, new rules of competition?

    What are we supposed to do for those people? Nothing?

    In my view, doing nothing is bad, but that does not justify jumping off a cliff for the sake of “doing something”.

    We owe it to all Americans (especially future generations) to solve these problems. Increasing taxes to give to the government for the purpose of creating a massive health care system does not work. The evidence is overwhelming. Furthermore, the tax burden retards the economy which leads to more poverty, which leads to more dependency…

    President Obama has done an outstanding job of elevating this issue. His shame is that rather than focus on solving the problem, he chose to politicize it.

    That seems callous (though I hesitate to make such an accusation against people I’ve never met).

    IMHO, most people have good intentions, but that does not mean they have the correct answers. We know what does not work. Perhaps it is time to couple our compassion with our intellect and craft real solutions while the political will is in motion. This is an enormous opportunity for this/our generation; I hope we do not blow it on something stupid.

    Pons Asinorum (20c241)

  134. thank you Mr. daleyrocks.

    The weirdest thing about these dirty socialists and their lust to control health care is that they hate people, these ones. They think people are dirty and wasteful and gluttonous and stupid godless animals. They budget kabillions of dollars to develop new metrics for how fat and stupid their fellow humans are.

    It’s a sick way to look at the world, as if it’s a disease and they’re the cure.

    happyfeet (d8cd81)

  135. Leviticus,

    You are treating health care as a right if you believe society has a duty to provide health care to some people, because that means it is something they are entitled to. At that point, it’s a small step to say society has a duty to provide health care to everyone, i.e., everyone has a right to health care.

    There’s precedent for your position: It’s similar to the right to an attorney in criminal matters if you are indigent and accused of a jailable offense. Reasonable people can disagree if society owes free health care and lawyers to the indigent — I think it’s probably a standard that evolves as a society becomes more affluent but, if so, then that implies society can rescind the right if it can no longer afford it. In other words, it’s not really a right to me but a privilege.

    However, I think your quibble is with the method we’ve chosen to deliver health care to the poor. There’s no question everyone has access to health care in America. The issue is whether we think they have enough health care, or the right kind of health care, or whether they may someday have to file bankruptcy if they can’t pay for it. I, for one, would far rather have a bankruptcy system that lets people discharge health care-related debts when they can’t pay, as opposed to mandating universal health care (or something similar) that bankrupts our economy and our nation.

    DRJ (d8773e)

  136. Anyone who thinks that allowing someone to see an oncologist on the government dime is the same as giving them some superfluous shiny toy on the government dime, please step forward so that I can ignore all your future arguments on the subject as hyperbolic apathy.

    steve miller pointed out that healthcare is not as important (in the big scheme of things) as free speech, free press, or other Constitutional rights, and I agreed. I think any honest person would agree that a Bertram Fucking Sportfisher is not as important (in the big scheme of things) as healthcare.

    Leviticus (f565c1)

  137. I like to see an experiment.

    Divide the US into something called “states.” Let each state create their own solution to this situation. Sit back and watch for a few years and see which solutions work best. Let the states also watch & then adopt these solutions themselves.

    Oh wait. We have that.

    Nevermind.

    steve miller (c5e78c)

  138. That won’t work, DRJ. Right now no doctor wants to into primary care. Because they are not getting paid. Not from Medicare, not from Medicaid, not from private insurance. It’s not just about helping the indigent patients. It’s also about sustaining our health care delivery system.

    nk (aa7de7)

  139. I also think any honest person would admit that people aren’t asking for free luxury cars; they’re asking for free treatment for medical conditions which they often cannot control. What do you suggest that a poor, uninsured individual do when they find out they’ve got cancer? Be honest: you expect them to see to their last will and testament.

    Leviticus (f565c1)

  140. Yes, there is a gradation.

    And “health care” (whatever that means) is certainly more interesting and universal than a sports car.

    But … ?

    What does that mean? Where do we draw the line?

    One thing I think I know: throwing money at a problem just makes the problem grow. We don’t have universal car insurance provided by the federal government, but imagine how that would distort the market.

    The federal government taking over 20% of the economy is a serious thing. A 1000+ bill (5 different versions that I know of) rushed into law because there’s no time to waste? Legislators laughing that no one could read it before signing?

    Doesn’t this quell you a bit? Maybe–let’s take a step back, define the problem better, and define more narrowly targeted solutions.

    Throwing a trillion dollars at this might be a disastrous solution–and if it is, it will be even more difficult to change or stop once enacted.

    steve miller (c5e78c)

  141. I think cancer is unfair.

    happyfeet (d8cd81)

  142. You are bringing in the tears again, and it’s admirable–but at what point do you say No, you’ll have to live with that. We can’t afford it?

    “Free” health care won’t be. “Universal” won’t be wide-spread until they cover illegal aliens. They’ll have to, if they don’t want to pretend that a large portion of the problem is illegal aliens w/o insurance.

    And the government is incompetent to run things.

    How many cars were bought with the BillionDollarBailout (Cash4Clunkers)? How many applications processed? How many rejected? By how much was the program underfunded, both in demand and in administrative costs? Take this and apply it to a government agency running 20% OF THE FRICKIN’ ECONOMY. What is the likely results?

    Remember, if the government was in charge of the Mojave Desert, we’d be importing sand.

    steve miller (c5e78c)

  143. BTW & FWIW, I personally believe in charity. I believe in doing good things.

    I just don’t think it’s particularly moral to force my neighbor out of his house just so I can do my good works.

    steve miller (c5e78c)

  144. nk – A public option most certainly will not leave your insurance or mine alone.

    Leviticus – I maintain my position that if the federal government wants to take over the healthcare industry, there are a variety of ways they could do so with my tacit support. First, they could quit lying to me about it, and about me as to why I disagree with them. They could start by demonstrating their ability to run Medicare, the VA, and the Indian healthcare system in an efficent manner, making sure that access meets or exceeds that of the private healthcare system, at an actual reduced cost (not simply decreasing payments), and by doing so in a manner where the deficits will destroy our system, which Teh One claims they are right now.

    When government can do that, I will listen.

    DR. JD (240403)

  145. Leviticus,

    I honestly don’t get your answer, if it was directed at me. People can get treatment for cancer now. Can everyone get top-of-the-line treatment? No, but even insured people can’t get that if their plans don’t allow it or it’s not convenient or they can’t afford it. And, even if we had universal health care, there would still be limits on how many people the top doctors could treat.

    What you’ve written sounds great but the issue is not whether we want people to have health care but how we deliver it. The uninsured from my area go to the same emergency rooms my family goes to and, if they get a serious cancer, they are sent to the same cancer center my insured family would go to. They are treated by the same doctors, get the same standard of care, and the only difference is that they may not pay for their health care and our family pays 5 times or more what a private hospital would charge.

    Frankly, I should be the one wishing for universal care but I’m not because I know it will only make health care less available for everyone and more expensive for all.

    DRJ (d8773e)

  146. Still neither one of these two has posted their charitable works, just quotes from the Bible that is supposed to appeal to their cartoonish characitures of conservatives. Only generous with other peoples money it seems like, two thieves without the balls to do the stealing themselves.

    Mr. Pink (7841a9)

  147. Still no posting of their own givings to charity, only cartoonish characiture postings from the Bible that appeal to what they think conservatives think about. Two thieves without the balls to do the stealin themselves.

    Mr. Pink (7841a9)

  148. nk,

    I think the schools that train osteopaths, nurse practitioners, and physician’s assistants are growing in number and enrollment, and more communities are turning to them for primary health care. In my experience, most provide substantially as good primary care as a traditional MD but at much less cost. It’s a market response that I like better than having it forced on me by government or forcing MDs into primary care slots.

    DRJ (d8773e)

  149. Mr Pink,

    If one of the people you are referring to is Leviticus, I highly advise you tone it down.

    He and I agree on little – he being a bleeding-heart liberal, and I being a cold-hearted libertarian – but he is someone that I and many others here respect.

    You would do well to speak to him in a civil manner.

    Scott Jacobs (d027b8)

  150. I will be civil if he shows me how much he donated to charity last year instead of posting quotes from the Bible. Obviously he thinks everyone on the “right” reads the Bible and is just blown away cause he quoted it. It was insulting of him to do wtf does any of this have to do with the Bible?

    Mr. Pink (7841a9)

  151. zomg

    another day another NPR story about how health care is not about health care you stupid white haters why don’t you get that? It’s gracious of them to keep repeating it but I wouldn’t blame them if they lost patience with you.

    Once more from the top, Michel Martin takes a deep bong hit and exhales…

    Can I just tell you? You can see why this puts me in mind of all the bellowing we’ve been seeing as a part of the so-called health care debate. I say so-called because, is anybody really debating anything here?*

    Yes, Michel. We’re debating health care. YOU are not talking about health care. NPR is sometimes talking about health care and sometimes talking about how hateful and stupid white people are cause of how they think about health care. But here on the for real Internets, yes, people are debating health cares. Really. No lie.

    Damn.

    happyfeet (d8cd81)

  152. Well, I’d appreciate it if everyone would tone it down, if only for the moderators’ sake. Many comments have been trapped in the filter due to profanity. It would really help us have a life and get more sleep at night if you could keep it clean so we don’t have to monitor the filter 24/7. It’s been especially noticeable on this thread.

    DRJ (d8773e)

  153. oh. Mr. Pink is right about the thievings part though. It is what it is.

    happyfeet (d8cd81)

  154. It was insulting of him to do wtf does any of this have to do with the Bible?

    Really?

    And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three; but the greatest of these is charity. – I Corinthians 13:13

    “My brothers, what use is it for a man to say he has faith when he does nothing to show it? Can that faith save him? Suppose a brother or a sister is in rags with not enough food for the day, and one of you says, ‘Good luck to you, keep yourselves warm, and have plenty to eat’, but does nothing to supply their bodily needs, what is the good of that? So with faith; if it does not lead to action, it is in itself a lifeless thing.” (James 2:14-17).

    Mayhaps you should read it a bit more. Leviticus considers it a Good Work, and while I do not entirely agree, it is not something I will allow to be mocked.

    He has not – to my knowledge – demanded of you to show what you give to charity, and as I will not abide you mocking his desire to do good, I will not be idle as you insult him further.

    Be civil, or shut the fuck up.

    Scott Jacobs (d027b8)

  155. Oh sure, now I see DRJ ask us to cut down the swearing…

    Scott Jacobs (d027b8)

  156. DRJ – I have made a concerted effort to not say f*ck, c*ck, d*ck, ballz, arse, variations on phrases denoting young cats, etc … And goats. And chocolate starfish.

    All of that effort, and the dirty little socialists are still trying to foist their dirty little socialisms on us.

    DR. JD (e0ced2)

  157. Well in my defense I found it condescending as hell for someone spouting left wing canon to start throwing around Bible versus. He obviously did it because in his mind he was mocking most people here, because he thinks anyone to the right of Pelosi reads the Bible every day. If he could show me where he, in talks with his own friends and people that he agrees with, quotes the Bible in defense of an argument I will gladly eat my words, but I doubt that happened. Also it is kinda unreasonable to ask but I am pretty sure it is accurate.

    Mr. Pink (7841a9)

  158. I never knew Oberman posted under the alias NK or Leviticus. But if you read carefully you can see the spittle on the screen.

    Why is it that when the Left advocates any policy it is always about reducing options and freedoms rather than expanding them?

    Why is it always about robbing one to pay another in the name of charity.

    But the Left always sasks of itself, “What would Lennin do?”

    It can’t ask “What would Jesus do?” because it denies his existence and of religion itself. So we get the constant non existant “emergencies and crisises. Ever notice the stories about the homeless that we read so often when Bush was president. Do we hear about the horrors of the unemployed today after Obama has produced millions of them in six short months?

    Why does the Left refuse to admit the states that experimented with universal healthcare or some variation found themselfs bankrupt or spending vastly more than they expected. Why do they never mention Massachusetts, Oregon, Tennessee or Hawaii?

    Why is it they avoid the results at the VA or the Indian Reservation hospitals. Why do they never mention the incredible success of Medicare and why it costs over 100 times what the Left claims it would cost?

    Why do they pass around bogus healthcare reports stating the US medical system is poor when you see the world’s leaders avoidng their superior healthcare systems for treatment in the US?

    Pretty obvious unless you wear the blinkers of the Left.

    Thomas Jackson (8ffd46)

  159. Thomas, you’re an idiot. You were born an idiot, you grew up as an idiot, you are an idiot now, and you will always be an idiot. You have no sense and no education and my room temperature is higher than your IQ. You do serve one important societal function — what to not be like.

    nk (aa7de7)

  160. And super cache is still teh suXxor, 4-letter words or not.

    DR. JD (b7c790)

  161. I’d have more time to clean the cache if I weren’t also having to check the spam filter.

    Just saying.

    DRJ (d8773e)

  162. Well in my defense I found it condescending as hell for someone spouting left wing canon to start throwing around Bible versus.

    Why? Because the Left is not allowed to be religious? Is there a prohibition I was not informed of?

    And I don’t care if you found secrect insults regarding your mother’s sex life and his role in it, you will be civil to him, by God.

    He obviously did it because in his mind he was mocking most people here, because he thinks anyone to the right of Pelosi reads the Bible every day.

    Or because he believes it. But whatever. You’re too busy finding offense when none exists to accept the idea that someone who isn’t right-of-center could ever have any sort of faith in God.

    If he could show me where he, in talks with his own friends and people that he agrees with, quotes the Bible in defense of an argument I will gladly eat my words, but I doubt that happened. Also it is kinda unreasonable to ask but I am pretty sure it is accurate.

    Neither he nor anyone else on this blog need prove their faith to the likes of you or anyone.

    I really, really advise you just tell him you’re sorry for being a complete douchbag and/or tool.

    Scott Jacobs (d027b8)

  163. I never knew Oberman posted under the alias NK or Leviticus. But if you read carefully you can see the spittle on the screen.

    I could have sworn I told you to stop acting like a jack-hole.

    If not…

    Stop acting like a jack-hole. Think before you open your noise-hole.

    NK is hardly a socialist, or Olbermann, and neither is Leviticus.

    You and Pink really need to just shut up, and learn how to read critically, instead of read only the words you THINK are on the screen. Your blinders are very much pissing me off.

    Scott Jacobs (d027b8)

  164. Mr. Pink – Swordfish Sideways. Enjoy.

    daleyrocks (718861)

  165. I didn’t think Mr. Pink was super mean or anything that I saw. Mr. Leviticus could easily say hey Mr. Pink let’s be friends and Mr. Pink would probably not say under no circumstances Mr. Leviticus thou art a knave and a villain. I think Mr. Pink would be more like okey dokey just you have to understand I am very much not in favor of the dirty socialist health cares and Mr. Leviticus could just say well I understand that.

    happyfeet (d8cd81)

  166. DRJ,

    My earlier comment wasn’t directed at you: we cross-posted. What I would’ve said (had I responded in a timely fashion) is that I don’t think any individual/family should have to risk bankruptcy in order to have access to healthcare.

    In regards to your concerns about the practicality of extended health coverage, I have a system to propose: 1) Patients go to doctors and receive whatever treatment they need. 2) Doctors bill the federal government for whatever treatment they provide, plus a reasonable profit margin. 3) The government institutes a Health Care Tax that pays for the sum total of healthcare costs billed by doctors/health professionals in a single year. I ask this with all sincerity: is there some problem with that system that I’m missing? It seems simple enough…

    JD,

    I would say that your demands in re: demonstrable competence in healthcare provision on the part of government were reasonable if I thought that the government had any role in an ideal system other than tabulating and collecting the bill… but as you can see above, I don’t think that. The government should be our calculator, in this case. That’s it.

    Mr. Pink,

    I do not think everyone on the right reads the Bible – far from it. I quoted the Bible because I read the Bible, and because I try to live by it. In life and death, I am a Christian first and foremost: my lines of reasoning tend ultimately to lead back to what I believe to be the Word of God. I quote the Bible on a fairly regular basis on this blog, on any subject where I think it’s pertinent (as some of the regulars here could probably attest). Scott Jacobs already pointed out the specific pertinence of the Good Book to this particular debate.

    Anyway, I meant no offense in my reference, no implication of bible-thumping or gun-toting or riding-mower-racing or anything like that. It’s just the first thing that came to mind when you asked for a checklist of my charitable giving (which I’m still not going to give you, for the same reason as before – I’m not a Pharisee). I try to do what I can, whenever I can: that should be enough for you to stop impugning my motives. No one ought to be asking anything more than that of anyone else.

    Leviticus (f565c1)

  167. Scott,

    It’s cool, bro. I appreciate the defense, but give ‘em a chance to collect themselves. I’ve dealt with enough Leftists who do have contempt for any sort of faith to know that Mr. Pink’s interpretation of my comment was not necessarily unreasonable. And I’ve clarified, and I expect he’ll probably apologize, and things will be fine. And even if he doesn’t, things will be fine.

    Leviticus (f565c1)

  168. Leviticus,

    We could never afford the bill because some people would go to the doctor everyday and everyone would go more. It’s like buying on credit: Almost everyone spends more when they use credit than if they have to buy things with cash or a debit card. And the only thing that stops some people is if they reach their credit limit.

    Finally, I still think it’s much better for some Americans to have to file bankruptcy than to put the whole nation in bankruptcy. I don’t wish bankruptcy on anyone, and I don’t wish car wrecks, on-the-job accidents, or catastrophic diseases on them either. But bad things happen and personal bankruptcy is how a mature society helps its citizens deal with serious economic problems.

    DRJ (d8773e)

  169. They don’t have health insurance and they’re paying a fine.

    The road to hell is paved with good intentions. That’s all that needs to be said about the simpleminded, foolish do-gooderism (and actually a rather corrupt form of that, because it rests on a very thin veneer of compassion) that’s pouring forth from the current White House.

    Mark (411533)

  170. Car insurance mandates are bad.

    Car insurance mandates assume everyone is guilty of a crime they will eventually commit.

    It is just a matter of political corruption.

    If you wanted to be safe on the road, how about getting insurance for yourself instead of forcing everyone in the country to buy insurance too?

    Mandatory car insurance is like moving the earth to the left of that rock thats in your way so you can keep moving.

    Also, some people DO need to drive cars. No one should have to pay a large monthly fee in order to drive their car to the store once a month to get FOOD.

    Really, there is no point to mandatory car insurance.

    You are not responsible in advance for what you might do.

    However, if you want people who actually committed a driving-related crime or had a dui to have to buy it than that makes more sense. But not for life, only for a number of years after the crime depending on the crime.

    Justifying mandatory health insurance is like saying I could offer you a free cookie and then require EVERYONE in the country to buy comprehensive food insurance.

    Evan (af1dfb)

  171. offering someone just one cookie is sort of mean even if it’s free unless it’s like a really big cookie

    happyfeet (d8cd81)

  172. Evan – Are you asking me to pay for your mandatory car insurance because you can’t afford it?

    daleyrocks (718861)

  173. Leviticus, I think your attitudes towards the poor are admirable. I think you should be able to be kind to them.

    My position is that I don’t want to *have* to fund your actions. Do you just not understand that. A government mandate means I *must* do what *you* think best, and I find that arrant nonsense.

    steve miller (c5e78c)

  174. DRJ,

    I’m not sure if I understand: are you saying that people would go to the doctor everyday even if they knew that they would be paying the bill come April? Or that those who wouldn’t be paying the bill would go out of spite? Or that doctors would order treatments willy-nilly, or order unnecessary treatments or something, just because they knew they could bill the government for it?

    I mean, the government would collect in tax revenue whatever it payed out to doctors in a given year. How much more “deficit neutral” can you get? Could you explain your thought process a little more, please?

    Leviticus (f565c1)

  175. daleyrocks:

    No, I just said I was against car insurance. Why would I want you to pay it?

    Evan (af1dfb)

  176. daleyrocks:

    Sure, you can pay my car insurance if you want to.

    I don’t think you should be forced to, though.

    Paypal?

    Hehe, I know you are probably trying to line up some sort of point, but I think it will be revealed that you are wrong.

    Evan (af1dfb)

  177. Leviticus, they would go to the doctor much, much more because there would be *no* direct connection between how many times they went *personally* and their *general* health care tax. From each according to his ability, to each according to his need.

    Someone making $50k will pay X% no matter if he sees the doctor 2x a year or 24x a year. So, if there’s no additional cost, then why not go for a scratchy throat?

    steve miller (c5e78c)

  178. Conversely, if a person making $50k/yr *only* goes 2x a year, and gets the same increase in taxes as someone going 24x, he’s going to get smart *very fast* & the next year he is going to go 24x a year.

    steve miller (c5e78c)

  179. The Individual Mandate, when combined with the rules against discrimination will make young/healthy people valuable, while old/sick people will be a drain, to health insurance companies.

    Thus companies have no incentive to lower prices to get more customers, because getting more customers can mean that they get the WRONG customers. So if one insurance company gets a cheap pool advantage over another, its best interests lie in it increasing its prices up to the level of that competitors prices. It doesn’t want a flood of “undesirables”.

    Meanwhile, It has to use the extra profit it has to advertise to young people and recommend the other insurance company to old people. Lol, it would even be worth it to them to ADVERTISE for the OTHER company in places and on shows that have more old people.

    The mandates plus the requirements does not ever lead to low prices because it has a perverse economic incentive.

    It necessarily keeps prices high. That is not even taking into account that the plans being put forth require people to buy a lot more expensive plans than they otherwise would.

    Evan (af1dfb)

  180. Comment by Pons Asinorum — 8/17/2009 @ 6:47 pm
    Comment by DR. JD — 8/17/2009 @ 7:20 pm

    Well said, Sirs!

    And, DRJ, Leviticus’ profanity was directed at my example that slippery-slopes are no way to run government; for, once you determine that something that is a “nice to have” is a function of government, there are no practical limits to the “nice to haves” that government will be obligated to supply to someone, if not all.

    An example that springs to mind is the AFDC program instituted in the depths of the Depression, and immediately corrupted beyond all limits foreseen by its’ creator into the monster that was finally slain in the Welfare Reform Act of ’95 – it only took sixty-years to correct a mistake that costs the country Billions of Dollars, and generations of stilted souls. Thirty of those years occurred after Daniel Patrick Moynahan alerted the nation to the problem in his work in the 60′s.
    Why would we want to travel down that rocky road again?

    AD - RtR/OS! (a26a7a)

  181. Leviticus,

    People would go to the doctor more because the visit is too far removed from the payment and there is no incentive to minimize visits. And while doctors and ERs can limit or discourage patient visits, they do so at their own risk. Even hypochondriacs get sick sometimes.

    Further, this assumes good faith by every patient and health care provider and while I think most people do act in good faith, that’s not a realistic assumption. Some people will be more likely to go to the doctor to avoid work, school, jury duty, or other obligations. And some health care providers will inflate costs to maximize revenue. It’s not good to set up a system that makes it easy for people to abuse it.

    DRJ (d8773e)

  182. “My position is that I don’t want to *have* to fund your actions. Do you just not understand that. A government mandate means I *must* do what *you* think best, and I find that arrant nonsense.”

    - steve miller

    That’s what all government mandates in this country are, steve: everyone doing what the majority wants (which isn’t to claim that I’m in the majority on this issue, necessarily, just to say)…

    Is that all we’ve been arguing about all this time? Whether or not each of us (respectively) wanted the government to run healthcare in this country? Because I guess I thought you were making some argument as to whether or not the government could run healthcare, or had any right to run healthcare, all from a Constitutional standpoint.

    In re: your # of visits comments,

    Do you really think people will go to the doctor for nothing just because they can? Because they like going to the doctor so much? I mean, I have health insurance through my parents, and I have a doctor who cancels my co-pays because he knows my mom, and I hardly ever go the doctor, if I can help it. Isn’t going to the doctor one of the classic human aversions? Something people do only when it’s absolutely necessary (and sometimes not even then)?

    Leviticus (f565c1)

  183. “… because some people would go to the doctor everyday and everyone would go more…”

    This phenomona was written about extensively back in the 80′s by Thomas Sowell (among others) IIRC; particularly as to how it affected the costs of Medicare, that were running magnitudes beyond what had been foreseen when the program was debated and voted upon in the 60′s.

    This is why Dr. Mike constantly reminds us that in the French system, the patient has to dig into his own pocket to pay the Dr. the difference between what the Dr. charges, and what the health-care plan provides (at least that is how I remember his explaining it, perhaps the patient has to pay the entire tab and apply for reimbursement – I don’t know). But, the most important thing is that the patient has to pay out of his own pocket for the services he receives – that is an important self-rationing device.
    The truly indigent, of course, are provided for, as they have always been even in cold-hearted, capitalist, Robber-Baron America!
    It was, and is, called private charity!

    AD - RtR/OS! (a26a7a)

  184. AD – RtR/OS!, Dr. JD (I like your new handle), Leviticus, and others:

    I’m not bothered by profanity and I want people to feel free to discuss subjects, but I’m a little tired of cleaning the cache/filter and watching over things the past week. I admit I’m whining and I have a lazy attitude, but that’s where I’m at right now. Don’t pay me too much mind.

    DRJ (d8773e)

  185. Well then, Goodnight Dear Princess!

    AD - RtR/OS! (a26a7a)

  186. Leviticus – I do not want the government to run healthcare, I know from experience that they cannot, and I do not think that the government has the right to.

    DRJ – I am trying to be better, but I am a flawed person.

    JD PhD (7cad2c)

  187. Leviticus -

    Why, yes, I do believe people will consume more and more of “free” things.

    What’s so hard to understand about this?

    We hear this argument against building roads, because building more capacity paradoxically leads to more cars being driven.

    Free, open roads lead people to believe that driving cars more has no immediate cost.

    And no, I’m not saying the gist of it is whether I believe in majority rule.

    What I *am* saying is essentially “if you want to be compassionate, feel free to do so on your own dime. And try not to be offended when I reject your attempts to use guilt to control my behavior. But if you’re offended, too bad; I don’t feel bad in return.”

    steve miller (c5e78c)

  188. The problem with using emotions to guide government laws and policy is that the government doesn’t decide things on emotions. It decides things based upon other reasons, some which can be connected to the laws, rules, and regulations, and some upon how the bureaucrat is feeling that day or who is putting pressure on them.

    steve miller (c5e78c)

  189. I read somewhere else a few things.

    Let’s say there are 50 million uninsured (for whatever reason).

    And there are 10 million illegal aliens.

    So we have 40 million uninsured.

    We buy them policies at $400 / month for a family plan (or whatever the amount is now).

    That’s $16bn/yr.

    So I’m a little confused why we need to nationalize 20% of the economy with a $1tr budget expense over 10 years, a permanent bureaucracy, and the lose of individual freedom.

    steve miller (c5e78c)

  190. #160

    NK:

    Thank you. A man is known by his friends as well as his enemies. I can’t claim you qas a friend but I’d be honored to claim you as an opponent, just as I would be honored to claim Satan as an enemy.

    Your comments are mere bombast mascarading as stupidity, full of dangerous self indulgences and visceral resentments against both better educated than yourself and more knowledgeable. Each post serves to display your short comings, resorting to bile rather than displaying either reason or the ability to marshall fact.

    Describing your jibbering as mendacious doesn’t do justice to your torture of the truth. You cannot rebut arguments or evidence so you bray.

    Well bray on. No doubt you do more than that to little old grannies at townhall meetings.

    Thomas Jackson (8ffd46)

  191. “Free, open roads lead people to believe that driving cars more has no immediate cost.”

    - steve miller

    I doubt it, insofar as driving more leads to paying more for gas.

    Analogously, going to the doctor more often means getting probed with sharp, shiny things more often, and being told what delicious things you can’t eat and drink more often. Going to doctors more means having to listen to them more – an immediate cost if ever I saw one.

    Leviticus (f565c1)

  192. “I don’t think you should be forced to, though.”

    Evan – You were on the track I thought you were on and confirmed it here and in a subsequent comment. The super cache prevented me from checking back. Nothing underhanded.

    daleyrocks (718861)

  193. steve miller #190,

    Whatever gets subsidized care to the people who need it most efficiently and effectively. Like I said, I’m not particularly vested in any one course of action.

    Leviticus (f565c1)

  194. 164

    Hey Scotty you’re projecting again. Your anger management classes didn’t work either? Have you tried lithium?

    If you cannot respond with intelligent argument or rebut my observations the least you could do is convince us that neither you or NK are anything other than Stalinists. Its quite obvious that your profound indifference to intellectual honesty is due to your devotion to Ignauc Perpetusis, the patron saint of Marxists and people who were have their potential recognized by the rest of the world.

    Its laughable to hear you talk about blinders.

    Again I ask you to explain the difference between a mugger stealing and giving to charity and the government? But you can’t because you can neither reason nor grasp that what one man earns does not belong to you.

    I tire of dealing with superficial, frivolous, irresponsible people who invite ridicule because they have a low tolerance for reality.

    Do tell us how it feels to be so detached from reality Scotty.

    Try again when your comments aren’t so vapid. They do not even reach the level of sophistry but what would a delusional partisan who worships a jackal like Obama be expected to do?

    You do not disappoint Scotty.

    Thomas Jackson (8ffd46)

  195. I see TJ is off his meds again. Pity.

    JD PhD (9f4ff6)

  196. Evan – Since in your example insurance was mandatory and some people absolutely positively had to drive, almost like having a right to drive, someone has to pay for the insurance.

    Some states have assigned risk motorist pools to issue insurance on the drivers the private insurers don’t want to cover because their driving histories are so crappy – sort of like preexisting conditions in health care. The companies writing business in the state get assessed with a portion of the pool for the privilege of writing business in the state.

    My response would be to leave the state until results improve or raise prices to offset the pool results, neither a desirable result if applied to the health care situation as you pointed out in one of your comments.

    What is “extra profit” by the way?

    daleyrocks (718861)

  197. Its really a laugh watching the Stalinist quote the Bible. Its a bigger joke imaging that the Bible tells us to tolerate those who would steal from your family to sacrifice on the altar of the golden calf.

    The Stalinist have quoted the Bible, shall we not believe them to be disciples of the Lord or of the Rev. Wright’s church?

    Thomas Jackson (8ffd46)

  198. “I doubt it, insofar as driving more leads to paying more for gas.”

    Leviticus – I think steve’s comment was intended to refer more to the wear and tear on the vehicle.

    daleyrocks (718861)

  199. #196

    JD why not tell us all what drugs you recommend. You are the expert. Why don’t you show me up and demonstrate where I get my facts wrong little man?

    Why not demonstrate your brillance and present some evidence to show how poor my reasoning is.

    Surely it would be easy for so giant an ego as yours.

    If only I had your IQ I could have been a telemarketer like you too.

    Thomas Jackson (8ffd46)

  200. Extra profit depends on who is earning it, daleyrocks.

    JD PhD (72046a)

  201. TJ – You called Scott Jacobs a delusional partisan who worships a jackal like Obama. Maybe that passes for intellectual thought in the new wing at the asylum, but it has no basis in reality. But, you bore me.

    JD PhD (b7c790)

  202. Goodnight to most of you. Prayers for all.

    JD PhD (240403)

  203. Focusing on insurance is a distraction in my opinion. Insurance pay bills for consumers for medical claims validly covered under the terms of their policies. If health care costs are the overriding concern, which is where Obama started, insurance is the wrong place to look. Insurance doesn’t deliver care, merely pays for it after the fact. It is, however, an industry that’s easy to demonize.

    Herr Doktor Professor daleyrocks (718861)

  204. dalyerocks:

    “extra profit?” That refers to the extra money that the HEALTH insurance companies would have that had good pools and high ratio’s of healthy to sick.

    That post was purely about the individual mandate requiring everyone to buy health insurance in HR3200.

    Yes, everyone has to drive. Not everyone should have to pay for car insurance.

    You are saying that we are already responsible for what we end up doing?

    “Someone has to pay for the insurance.”

    I don’t get what you mean. In my example, no one would have to pay for the insurance because I don’t want it to be mandated.

    I am opposed to mandating car insurance. I thought that was clear. Except perhaps for people who actually have dui’s or cause traffic accidents.

    If it is mandatory, of course everyone has to pay for their own insurance. I’m not arguing in favor of subsidies, I’m arguing in opposition to mandates.

    Evan (af1dfb)

  205. JD

    You demonstrate to us why IQ tests require someone to be on the rght hand side of the curve. Too bad you weren’t man enough to take up my challenge but what can one expect from someone who gets third degree burns from using that new antisperiant that’s strong enough for a man but is PH balanced for a woman.

    Well its good to know all those evil capitalist corporations can get away hiring desperate, talentless, leftwing morlocks for less than they would have to pay illegals.

    There should be severe penalities for them exploiting people like you JD.

    By the way after you’ve managed to demonstrate the error in my reasoning (it will be a long wait) you can tell us when the mothership will beam you up after the comet arrives.

    Thomas Jackson (8ffd46)

  206. Leviticus, I mean no disrespect, but surely you didn’t miss my point.

    The idea of capacity is what we’re looking at here. Expand the capacity but charge little or nothing for using it (and gas is relatively cheap; it’s cheaper than designer water), and use will expand.

    I pay $X/gal and $Y/y taxes for the use of roads. *Anyone* in my state with the same income pays the same for use of the roads.

    To use your analogy, there is a slight increased cost to go to the doctor 24x/year vs 2x/year due to gasoline costs, but those costs are trivial & don’t form a barrier to use.

    What forms a barrier is shame, and if you think you are *owed* something (free health care), then shame isn’t part of the equation. (I feel no shame at buying fresh fruit because I think it’s part of my lifestyle, even though people in Asia are starving & how do I have the right to good stuff if they don’t?)

    Maybe the right solution is to completely disband insurance companies and simply let people go to whatever doctor whenever & wherever they want, for no fees whatsoever. That would be compassionate.

    steve miller (c5e78c)

  207. The point of the French system is that the health plan (not technically a government plan; more like Cal PERS) pays a fixed fee negotiated with the doctors and hospitals. The fixed fee is the whole payment (less 20% co-pay) for doctors in sector I. In return, they are included in a pension plan and get other benes. However, if they choose sector II, they can charge what they want but the plan pays only the negotiated fee. The rest is between them and the patient. Also, the patient pays first and get reimbursed later. Third, for big ticket items like a hospital stay, the patient has to pay only the deductible and the balance comes from the plan. However, there are private hospitals and the patient can choose one of them. They generally ask for payment up front and the plan pays the negotiated rate per day.

    The net effect of all this is 1. Moral hazard is reduced. There is no first dollar coverage.
    2. The patient is a customer and deserves to be treated well, a feature of the French system that is commented on by everyone. 3. Doctors are free to charge what they like but they must negotiate with the patient. The government plan knows what it is responsible for.

    Finally, all charges must be posted openly and the charges are completely open and there is no surprise when the bill comes.

    MIke K (2cf494)

  208. #205

    Can you explain why someone should be allowed to drive without insurance? Do you believe that your skill will enable you to never have or cause an accident?

    Or put another way, if an uninsured driver hits you and destroys your car how would you feel if he was uninsured?

    Just wondering.

    Thomas Jackson (8ffd46)

  209. Or, as I said earlier, just give $16bn/yr to the poor people for their doctor’s visits. Problem solved. No nationalization required.

    Or is it more important to nationalize an industry? Given what I read on lefty blogs, it’s about nasty capitalists making money.

    steve miller (c5e78c)

  210. I should add that there are other models. I am reading a book called The Innovator’s Prescription about different models for health care. It is interesting and has some good suggestions for central referral centers like Mayo Clinic. I don’t think it has the answer for the bulk of American health care but I’m not finished yet. When I do, I will post a review of it.

    MIke K (2cf494)

  211. If another driver hit my car I would wish I had had myself covered, and I would try to sue that driver.

    Like I have said multiple times, if you want to be safe, buy insurance for yourself. Seems a lot more simple than requiring everyone else in the country to buy insurance.

    “Explain why someone should be ALLOWED to drive without insurance?”

    Because this should be a free country, where we are not held responsible for crimes we haven’t yet committed.

    Thomas Jackson (af1dfb)

  212. Evan – I understand what you are arguing against for both cars and health care, but use the analogy. The insurance is mandatory for drivers but some insurance companies don’t want to cover risky drivers (pre-existing conditions). It may also be too expensive or so some may claim for people to afford.

    Guaranteed issue and community rating will cause insurers to raise prices. That is a certainty. Obama talking about cost savings is lying through his teeth. Creating an individual mandate is one way the insurers will have to offset the risks created by the guaranteed issue and community rating.

    daleyrocks (718861)

  213. Oops, sorry dude, I was not thinking and I put your name in for mine. I was a little distracted, sorry. I was thinking that was the “this is the guy i’m replying to part”.

    Sorry, that was a stupid thing I did.

    Evan (af1dfb)

  214. steve miller,

    I understood your point in re: decreasing costs leading to increased use. My argument was that I didn’t think the analogy held when it came to healthcare. People like driving; no one likes going to the doctor. I would think that the general unpleasantness of the experience would function as an inherent means of keeping visits to a bare minimum (thereby avoiding frivolous use). Sure, use would increase to an extent: that’s the point. But I think going to the doctor sucks enough that frivolous use would be minimal.

    Leviticus (f565c1)

  215. Thomas Jackson:

    Just freedom. People shouldn’t be held responsible for crimes they haven’t committed.

    Evan (af1dfb)

  216. daleyrocks:

    I know that insurance companies will have to raise rates. However my point is that forcing everyone to buy them is NECESSARILY going to raise rates, because they cannot make more money by getting more customers necessarily.

    So they have to keep their rates at the level of the highest competition. It DOES lower their costs by forcing people to buy, but they WON’T lower their prices due to the reasons I already specified.

    However, they wouldn’t lower their prices anyway, because there isn’t enough competition for them to do so, and there are so many regulations that market entry is difficult.

    Evan (af1dfb)

  217. Comment by AD – RtR/OS! — 8/17/2009 @ 9:45 pm

    Thank you AD, I think we’re all saying the same thing.

    Pons Asinorum (20c241)

  218. #188 — Comment by JD PhD — 8/17/2009 @ 10:06 pm

    Leviticus – I do not want the government to run health care, I know from experience that they cannot, and I do not think that the government has the right to.

    Perfect!

    Pons Asinorum (20c241)

  219. #208 — Comment by MIke K — 8/17/2009 @ 10:53 pm

    Couple that with a true Health Savings Account (not like the current restrictive HSA’s) and tort reform, and that sounds promising. Too bad the President will never even consider it.

    Pons Asinorum (20c241)

  220. Comment by Leviticus — 8/17/2009 @ 11:05 pm

    Healthcare, and its’ pursuit by man, does not repeal the fundemental laws of economics, which control all of our activities in part, or whole.
    This seems to be a chink in your education.
    A little Thomas Sowell, Walter Williams, or Milton Friedman would do wonders, YMMV!

    In the future, if you wish to pick a bone with me, contact me privately (you have my particulars – but in case you’ve misplaced that info – I’m sure Patterico would be happy to help).

    AD - RtR/OS! (a26a7a)

  221. “In the future, if you wish to pick a bone with me, contact me privately (you have my particulars – but in case you’ve misplaced that info – I’m sure Patterico would be happy to help).”

    - AD-RtR/OS!

    I’m not exactly sure what you’re talking about. Are you the Fax Guy? Either way, I don’t have your particulars, and in any case, what bone would I have to pick with you that I couldn’t flesh out right here on this site? Since that’s the proper forum for fleshing out our disagreements, and all…

    Are you the Fax Guy? Hahaha… you are, aren’t you?

    Leviticus (f565c1)

  222. 212

    Evan:

    I think you made a slight mistake here. Insuring yourself against a driver that has no insurance drives up your costs while leaving the bad driver to get off scot free. While I agree people should not be forced into most things, driving entails certain obligations on all involved.

    Why do we require all drivers pass examinations? Isn’t this involuntary? Insuring all drivers doesn’t necessarily drive up costs since the pool is broadened. In my profession our pool guarantees very low premiums across the board in areas they cover because the pool is made up of highly disciplined and risk adverse individuals.

    One of the problems with health care are those who demand that they not be insured and then complain that insurance companies will not insure them for “pre existing conditions.” This is akin to arguing that a firm refused to sell you fire insurance after your house burned down.

    Obama’s plan doesn’t create options it eliminates them. This is why he can’t explain in a coherent way or an honest way what he intends to do.

    Instead we get the nutroots braying “they want one payer healthcare.” Anyone who has had to endure one payer healthcare will tell you it isn’t healthcare, its take an aspirin and call bak in six months if your foot falls off.

    This is a reason no one goes to VA hospitals if they have any other option. Who’d refuse free treatment if it were as good as you could obtain on the open market?

    Thomas Jackson (8ffd46)

  223. Thomas Jackson:

    Driving does not imply that you need to pay a fee before you ever do anything wrong. You are not necessarily going to crash or cause a crash.

    I made no mistake. You want everyone in the country to be insured in case they happen to hit some individual. I want that individual to decide for himself whether or not he is protected. His rates will be higher? Well its his choice. Something that is a lot higher cost is forcing everyone else in the farking country to buy car insurance to protect him.

    “Why do we require all drivers pass examinations? Isn’t this involuntary? Insuring all drivers doesn’t necessarily drive up costs since the pool is broadened. In my profession our pool guarantees very low premiums across the board in areas they cover because the pool is made up of highly disciplined and risk adverse individuals.”

    I don’t know! Maybe it isn’t necessary. The people who don’t drive correctly will screw up anyway and weed themselves out of the system, so no I don’t think it is necessary, but that is a very low one time thing for the driver relative to insurance.

    “One of the problems with health care are those who demand that they not be insured and then complain that insurance companies will not insure them for “pre existing conditions.” This is akin to arguing that a firm refused to sell you fire insurance after your house burned down.”

    And what you are saying is that since some people complain about not being covered for pre-existing conditions, everyone should be forced to buy health insurance?

    “Obama’s plan doesn’t create options it eliminates them. This is why he can’t explain in a coherent way or an honest way what he intends to do.”

    Yes, obviously. Who are you arguing with? Who exactly are you talking to?

    “Instead we get the nutroots braying “they want one payer healthcare.” Anyone who has had to endure one payer healthcare will tell you it isn’t healthcare, its take an aspirin and call bak in six months if your foot falls off.”

    Single payer is better than an individual mandate.

    I don’t mind it rationing care because I’m going to be one of the ones you want in the system to subsidize your health insurance rates evidently.

    Or are you against the individual mandate for health insurance?

    Evan (af1dfb)

  224. Will my previous comment ever be added? What is it with the supercache?

    Evan (af1dfb)

  225. Comment by Thomas Jackson — 8/17/2009 @ 10:29 pm

    The more I read, the more I am convinced that you have yet to leave High School.

    I really have gotten tired of your idiocy and unending attacks on others. From Leviticus to JD to nk to myself, you have yet at accurately label a single person.

    I would be amused, were you not stuck on “you disagree, thus you are a Stalinist”.

    A few items for your quisling mind to ponder:

    1) Even those most against the current attempts at HC Reform agree that there are flaws in the current system that need to be replaced.

    2) Even those most against the public option think that something must be done to make insurance affordable for those who try but can’t afford it.

    3) No one owns the bible. Anyone can quote it. I would like for a real Stalinist to arrive and quote it daily, simply to annoy you.

    The difference between the mugger and the Govt is I have a chance to stop the mugger, not that such a fine distinction would occur to you. I know you wish to let go and rage against the income tax, but one of these days you will have to accept that – thank God – you don’t get to decide how things work.

    Do not attack a single person without knowing them again, Thomas. You have yet to be accurate in your labels. Neither nk, JD, nor Leviticus or myself are socialists. I don’t know where you got your labeling conventions, but they are horribly skewed.

    Scott Jacobs (d027b8)

  226. Anyone who is in favor of socializing 1/4 of the economy is by definition a socialist. It does not matter if you claim you are not a socialist, your position realtive to socializing things makes you a socialist. So, stop complaining about being labled based on factual information – namely what you yourself are for, i.e., socializing things.

    Monkeytoe (3a53b9)

  227. Scott,

    Your numbers 1 and 2 are not necessarily correct. You may believe them to be true, but polls don’t bear them out.

    When people are asked generically whether they favor “health care reform” they say yes. When asked specifically about doing things they are against almost every “solution” the left pushes.

    So to claim that everyone wants what you want is not factual.

    Monkeytoe (3a53b9)

  228. Anyone who is in favor of socializing 1/4 of the economy is by definition a socialist.

    Comment by Monkeytoe — 8/18/2009 @ 5:55 am

    Who is in favor of socializing 1/4th of the economy?

    And where did that 1/4th come from in the first place? Are you including highways, roads, sidewalks, airports, air controllers, sewers, water purification plants, food stamps, USDA food centers, public and national parks, police, fire, military, public schools, public universities, public hospitals, Medicare, Medicaid, Medicare Part D, public hospitals, Section Eight housing, housing projects, NIH, CDC, VA, drivers’s licenses …?

    nk (aa7de7)

  229. What was the point of quoting the Bible? For one charity is not charity if it is taken by force. Second of all is Leviticus trying to argue that God will count paying taxes for socialized medicine as a good work or something when he dies? When I die will God look at me and say “you drank, cussed, and took advantage of women, but hey you payed your taxes so some poor person you never met was able to see a doctor for a sore throat so you’re alright come on in!!!”?

    Any God, Christian, Islamic, or Hindu, has nothing to do with any of this.

    BTW daley wtf is up with this swordfish crap? Is that supposed to be an insult or is that like some nerd typing that he “owned” me? I honestly do not get it.

    Mr. Pink (eae12c)

  230. JD why not tell us all what drugs you recommend.
    Comment by Thomas Jackson — 8/17/2009 @ 10:41 pm

    Risperdal is indicated for dementia. The dose can be as low as 1mg/day and as high as 80 mgs/day. But please talk to your doctor.

    nk (aa7de7)

  231. “Do not attack a single person without knowing them again, Thomas.”

    Or what?

    Mr. Pink (eae12c)

  232. The kindler and gentler JD is struggling today.

    To borrow from a wise man, Abe Froman, Thomas Jackson is so dumb that he has the potential to drown in a bowl of Cheerios.

    JD (d46097)

  233. Your numbers 1 and 2 are not necessarily correct. You may believe them to be true, but polls don’t bear them out.

    No, they are born out. Being against attempts to socialize health care doesn’t mean people don’t see the flaws in the system.

    A majority don’t want THIS health care reform. That doesn’t mean we want NO reform. I and others have time and again listed measures that would greatly reduce insurance costs. That is reform. It just isn’t THIS reform.

    Scott Jacobs (d027b8)

  234. [...] Patterico’s Pontifications: Individual Mandate Two-step: [...]

    Obama is the worst possible sort: a profoundly vain ignoramus « docweaselblog (88a07c)

  235. “Second of all is Leviticus trying to argue that God will count paying taxes for socialized medicine as a good work or something when he dies? When I die will God look at me and say “you drank, cussed, and took advantage of women, but hey you payed your taxes so some poor person you never met was able to see a doctor for a sore throat so you’re alright come on in!!!”?”

    - Mr. Pink

    (sighs)

    No, man. You’re missing my point. You asked me to give you a laundry list of my charitable giving. I said I would not, because to do so would be to “announce [my giving] with trumpets, as the hypocrites do in the synagogues and on the streets, to be honored by men.” That’s all. Although, as I said before, the Bible makes it fairly clear that we are to care for the poor… but that’s another thing.

    Leviticus (f565c1)

  236. “And where did that 1/4th come from in the first place? Are you including highways, roads, sidewalks, airports, air controllers, sewers, water purification plants, food stamps, USDA food centers, public and national parks, police, fire, military, public schools, public universities, public hospitals, Medicare, Medicaid, Medicare Part D, public hospitals, Section Eight housing, housing projects, NIH, CDC, VA, drivers’s licenses …?”

    - nk

    Shhhh, nk. That stuff doesn’t count, because it doesn’t. You must love Stalin a whole hell of a lot to mention public schools and hospitals in an argument about public healthcare. The two have nothing in common! Nothing!

    Leviticus (f565c1)

  237. Second of all is Leviticus trying to argue that God will count paying taxes for socialized medicine as a good work or something when he dies?

    For you, I suspect it would be the only thing you have going for you. For someone so insulted that you might have the Bible quoted at you, you certainly seem ignorant of it’s content or message. “Give unto Ceasar”, and all that.

    Charity is a good work, and making sure others are taken care of is good work. It is why the Church runs so many shelters and soup kitchens – the Church understands that there is a certain duty to help your fellow man.

    Although, as I said before, the Bible makes it fairly clear that we are to care for the poor

    Damn God hatin’ liberals, readin’ our books. You stay away from OUR bible, darn you!

    :)

    Scott Jacobs (d027b8)

  238. Also, I didn’t have a chance to say it earlier, but Mike K’s comments on this thread have been some of the most insightful (in my opinion) – #7 in particular.

    Leviticus (f565c1)

  239. And where did that 1/4th come from in the first place?

    I wondered the same thing…

    Health Care is a 1/6th of the economy, and if TJ was able to read, or owned a TV or radio and was capable of the thought needed to operate either, he’d know that.

    You damned socialist. :)

    Scott Jacobs (d027b8)

  240. Well, Leviticus, we’ll have to agree to disagree. I think making health care “free” (by hiding the tax in the general taxes) will drive up use.

    steve miller (0fb51f)

  241. Fair enough. I mean, I agree that it will drive up use somewhat, just not to the unsustainable levels you’re talking about.

    Leviticus (f565c1)

  242. Leviticus,

    There’s an interesting article about TennCare in the Wall Street Journal that touches on some of these issues.

    DRJ (d8773e)

  243. Actually, Scott, if health care costs are 1/6th, or 17% of GDP, something has to be done about it. No way we have that many sick people. We have too many hogs in the trough it seems to me.

    nk who now knows how to beat supercache (aa7de7)

  244. LOL, it may be 1/6th now, but it will become 1/4th or bigger if the democrats manage to take control of it. While Obama has to pretend to ration in many ways in order to pretend this isn’t a financial disaster, the fact is, the democrats want you to stuff your face with goodies with Obama logos on it. They will only ration if it helps them politically.

    To great extent, they will just try to get a majority of voters dependent on enormous deficit spending. That seems to be the plan, and I bet healthcare becomes a far bigger slice of our economy in this case.

    Juan (bd4b30)

  245. nk, I think part of the reason health care is such a large number is that everything else is generally getting cheaper, while health care is providing all these new (and expensive) ways to have a more pleasant life.

    I was at Target, and filled my cart will all kinds of stuff. The cart’s cost doubled when my wife put a tiny little bag from the pharmacy in it.

    Juan (bd4b30)

  246. “Damn God hatin’ liberals, readin’ our books. You stay away from OUR bible, darn you!”

    I am not religious at all but from that characiture right there I can see I was absolutely right about the context of how the people here are bringing Christianity into this. As a cudgel to advance their arguments. BTW go f@ck yourself.

    Mr. Pink (7841a9)

  247. Yeah, sure. You were absolutely right. About everything. Always. You da man.

    Leviticus (f565c1)

  248. just not to the unsustainable levels you’re talking about.

    In Medicare and Medicaid, the levels are already unsustainable. And the CBO says BarackyCare is unsustainable. Are you working from a different set of fact than they are?

    JD (b86ae5)

  249. Mr Pink, people brought Christianity into this to discuss the important of helping the poor. That’s an ethical argument that is far from rude or inappropriate.

    What’s your problem with that? It actually superficially is supportive of socialism. I think a sophisticated analysis reveals that it’s about personal choice, not government forced charity (and democrat dependence creation), but that’s a great way to discuss this issue.

    Juan (bd4b30)

  250. Evan I would suggest you look at the reforms suggested by the CEO of whole foods in the Wall Street Journal. These were sensible, reasonab;le and doable.

    They are all the things the nutroots and their bbraying lemmings stonewall because it does not allow them to loot the people and impose a politboror over healthcare.

    Let me know what you think of the article.

    Thomas Jackson (8ffd46)

  251. 226

    Scotty go back to your WiFi in your parents basement and let us know when your mind matures beyond the never ending cliches such as :

    “we all agree that the healthcare has flaw.”

    This is the typical BS response one gets from a Marxcist who then tells us why we should ignore history, reality and the constitution and allow the government to seize control of about 16% of the economy.

    Seems like most of the readers here have labelled you a communist. I wonder why that is and why you have to plaster the screen with so much spittle denying it?

    I love it when the Devil quotes the Bible. It reminds how evil comes in all forms. You label yourself to all and sundry when you twist the Bible out of its context to support Marxist tennets. But what would Marx do eh?

    Finally we have a true demonstration of your lack of a moral rudder and the immense stupidity that characterizes all of your comments.

    What is the difference between a mugger who steals from you and the government which does the same?

    Scotty our resident Marxist brays:
    The difference between the mugger and the Govt is I have a chance to stop the mugger, not that such a fine distinction would occur to you. I know you wish to let go and rage against the income tax, but one of these days you will have to accept that – thank God – you don’t get to decide how things work.

    Such genius, such wit, such wisdom. In other words we can resist a mugger but resistance against the government is futile?

    You parody the arguments of those who warn against the loss of freedom and liberty telling us you can do nothing, nothing.

    Well little man you have demonstrate a third rate mind and a fifth rate education.

    Bray on, every word you write demonstrates the moral and intellectual bankruptcy of those who equate theft with virtue. Marxism with justice.

    But who can object to the comments of someone who majored in Halo and lists it on his resume.

    Thomas Jackson (8ffd46)

  252. #228

    Moneytoe:

    You’ll never win an argument with
    “true believers.” Government control over 16% of the economy isn’t socialism. Just as the Nazi Party wasn’t socialist.

    Its the dream of capitalists everywhere, if you are a stone cold Stalinist like Scotty and NK.

    Thomas Jackson (8ffd46)

  253. #230

    Mr. Pink:

    When Lefties quote the Bible you know that they are warping it in every sense of the word. Where does Jesus tell you to allow the authorities to violate the laws of good? What would Jesus think of someone who used your tax dollars to fund abortions and throw medical staff who refused to kill babies out of work?

    Satan can quote the scriptures and does. Listen to Obama, that good god fearing man. Isn’t he as much of a christian as Scotty the wonder troll of NK the steroid fueled king of dementia?

    Thomas Jackson (8ffd46)

  254. 231

    Wow NK we all knew the steroid fueled king of dementia would be expert in this subject.

    Now tell us about what you inject to produce all those voices talking to you.

    On the other hand why don’t you and Scotty console each other by telling him you and he are unappreciated by all those idiots out here. Just you and he out of step with everyone else. Must be tough being the guy that everyone warns their children to avoid, especially when he wears a raincoat.

    Wouldn’t your time be more productivelyspent if you could acually produce a coherent argument rather than doing your infantile rant

    IWANT GOVT FUNDED HEALTHCARE.

    Such a profundly intellectual and winning argument.

    Now go to your corner and put on your straight jacket like a good little man you are.

    Thomas Jackson (8ffd46)

  255. NK:

    Do the readers have to listen to NK boast how he taught Al Sharpton his rhyming skills while paling around with Rev Wright?

    Its so boring. So NKish.

    Thomas Jackson (8ffd46)

  256. Thomas, you’re an idiot.

    nk (aa7de7)

  257. NK

    Res ipsa loquitur.

    Thomas Jackson (8ffd46)

  258. Thomas,

    La plume de ma tante est sur le bureau de mon oncle.

    You’re an idiot.

    nk (aa7de7)

  259. nk, while I disagree with you on the subject matter of the thread itself, we have found a topic of agreement …

    SPQR (26be8b)

  260. This is the typical BS response one gets from a Marxcist who then tells us why we should ignore history, reality and the constitution and allow the government to seize control of about 16% of the economy.

    From the guy who recommends

    Evan I would suggest you look at the reforms suggested by the CEO of whole foods in the Wall Street Journal. These were sensible, reasonab;le and doable.

    I laugh, because he’s so stupid he doesn’t get the irony.

    TJ, YOU JUST SUGGEST REFORM OF A SYSTEM!!!

    And you don’t reform what isn’t flawed. So thank you for agreeing with me.

    Scott Jacobs (d027b8)

  261. Scotty:

    Try and understand the difference between those who advocate the government takeover of 16% of the economy and deny this is socialism and those who advocate changes that improve options, freedom, and less government control

    I realize you don’t know the meaning of the word irony or can grasp the concept of freedom but try real hard.

    Thomas Jackson (8ffd46)

  262. 260

    SPQR & NK

    Res ipsa loquitur.

    Here’s your James E. McGreevey Award.

    Thomas Jackson (8ffd46)

  263. And I would suggest ( hell, I’d outright shout ) that you neither know the meaning of the word “irony” nor the meaning of the phrase “res ipsa loquitur”.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  264. SPQR, I really meant what I said in my Comment #19. I honestly do believe that our health care delivery has reached the point where “my plan” is the best case scenario. A public option, a true option, that competes with private insurance but does not supplant it.

    I overreacted with our noR lauP-ian friends who pull their own teeth and remove their own gallstones but, when all is said and done, all I want is for the government to provide health care to those who cannot get it for themselves and leave the rest of us alone.

    nk (aa7de7)

  265. nk, I was suggesting that our area of agreement was Mr. Jackson.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  266. Nk – A public option will inevitably supplant the private. On this, we could not disagree more.

    JD (3086d2)

  267. SPQR:

    Try this one on you inspidi, toxic little toad your comments define your education, inability to grasp the obvious, and worse your utter blind hatred. You sir define ignorance in its most wretched and obvious meaning.

    Now if you can rebut one of those mindless things I have said I’m sure the readers would benefit far more from that demonstration rather than your continual passion for indisciminate lying.

    But that is far too much to expec t from such a limited mind.

    Res ipsa loquitur

    Isaiah 5:20-23

    Thomas Jackson (8ffd46)

  268. SPQR:

    How long have you and NK been going out together?

    Thomas Jackson (8ffd46)

  269. WTF is the matter with you?

    JD (3086d2)

  270. JD
    Tvoy grim seychas lejit na skalakh.

    Res ipsa loquitur. Seek help.

    Thomas Jackson (8ffd46)

  271. Jackson, I tried that one … but frankly your insults were not of the high caliber I usually hold myself to. They lacked any real creativity or wit. So I’ll have to pass.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  272. How could a public option possibly compete w/ private insurance unless it is supported by taxes and laws requiring providers to accept less than 1/2 their actual charges – or even sometimes less than their actual costs?

    And, if such a plan is enacted, how could any private insurance compete – when they have to actually work w/in the $$ they get from premiums vs. money they pay out? there is no way to compete w/ a gov’t program that is subsidized by our tax dollars.

    Hence, no private insurance could compete and would go out of business, leaving us all with inefficient and overly expensive gov’t care. We would get worse care at more cost. Yes, “everyone” (including all of the illegals) would be covered and get the same crappy care.

    Why is that so attractiv eto people.

    Monkeytoe (93fd7a)

  273. Good to see the insane clown posse in action again. You are the expert in really uncreature thought as demonstrated in your comments. Just stick with the hive mind shtickits so Chicago?

    I love to see the inner Gollum of you Chicago boys. You tried this before remember troll?

    Thomas Jackson (8ffd46)

  274. Mr. Pink – Since you are so boldly raising the level of discourse here – What Fluffy said!

    Go f@ck yourself sideways with a swordfish. Enjoy.

    daleyrocks (718861)

  275. What evidence is there that gov’t can run healtch care insurance efficiently? Medicare? Medicaid? Or any program? Social Security (almost bankrupt), the V.A. medical system. The post office?

    Why do liberals claim to be suspicious of gov’t (see all years under a republican president) and yet constitantly agitate for more more gov’t control over everything. It makes no rational sense.

    Monkeytoe (93fd7a)

  276. Because, Monkeytoe, there are people who explicitly believe that a system where everyone gets the same level of crappy care is intrinsically better than a system where some people get crappy care and some people get better care.

    Equality of result, even if the result is bad, is an explicit goal of many on the Left.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  277. Monkeytoe you’ll run afoul of the Chicgo mob. You can see them above with their mindless insults. DON’T TROUBLE THEM WITH ANYTHING OF SUBSTANCE.

    Thomas Jackson (8ffd46)

  278. “It actually superficially is supportive of socialism. I think a sophisticated analysis reveals that it’s about personal choice, not government forced charity”

    Juan – The above was weak even from you. It is about choice, not forced government participation, which is why it is nothing like socialism.

    ANALOGY – FAIL

    daleyrocks (718861)

  279. TJ – Why are you talking to yourself? Are you drunk already?

    daleyrocks (718861)

  280. Daley what is it with you and your sexual fetish with fish and wtf did I ever say to you anyway?

    Mr. Pink (7841a9)

  281. No daley, I’m right about that, though I hope we never have to find out. I never said anything about ‘forced participation’.

    ‘Weak even for me’ is pretty hilarious. You have summarily dismissed everything I say as stupid. Without ever taking the time to argue with me on the merits of anything. Why are you insulting so many people? What’s wrong with you that you think this is a fun thing to do with your time?

    Anyway, I’m confident that many have argued for some kind of tax penalty for not having health insurance. Who knows what will wind up in this bill, or in the bill that puts out the fire that is deliberately being set? All I know is that if these sorts of bills pass, more of the economy % will be devoted to health care. I think that’s actually somewhat banal of me to point out.

    If you’ve got a problem with me, that’s fine with me… I don’t really mind that much. I’m here for discussion… not to agree with some jerk.

    Juan (bd4b30)

  282. Daley:

    Its obvious to the casual observer who is drunk. Lay off the hair tonic laddie. You’ve gone down hill since you lost your McDonald’s gig.

    Thanks your demonstrating your level of intelligence though. Its all part of the Chicago insane clown posse brand. Do you guys all belong to the same NAMBLA chapter?

    Thomas Jackson (8ffd46)

  283. Well, looks like this thread’s cashed.

    Leviticus (f565c1)

  284. Some people are full of hate hate hate today. Pity.

    JD (abe6ab)

  285. I do not even know what I did to be dragged into this to be honest besides taking offense to someone quoting scripture at me in defense of an argument.

    Mr. Pink (7841a9)

  286. Juan – Making the argument that Christianity is superficially supportive of socialism because they both encourage taking care of the poor, the argument you were making, was stupid IMHO.

    You realized the difference in the next sentence – socialism forced everyone to help take care of the poor whether they like it or not, but Christianity leaves it up to the individual. The two things are not the same, not even close.

    You just have a tendency to comment before thinking in my view.

    daleyrocks (718861)

  287. “Daley what is it with you and your sexual fetish with fish.”

    Mr. Pink – Do you have a problem with fish?

    daleyrocks (718861)

  288. “Its obvious to the casual observer who is drunk.”

    TJ – Absolutely, that’s why I posed the question after reviewing your incoherent screechings. Have some coffee or take a nap.

    daleyrocks (718861)

  289. Mr. Pink – You have obviously been grievously wronged by the god bothering idiots on this blog. Please forgive us.

    daleyrocks (718861)

  290. As TJ decends into troll-land, and Mr Pink is left wondering why we would ever be mean to him after he attacked Leviticus (because we aren’t allowed to be friends with Liberals, I guess), I would just like to publicly state that I dearly wish for the both to enter Moderation due to incredible ass-hattery.

    Scott Jacobs (d027b8)

  291. Daley:
    I suppose that for someone of your limited mental abilities I should have put the answer in a response that you would better understand.

    So here goes, its hard to understand what rock you crawled out from under but your mother had best sue the clinic where she got the sperm donation. Obviously it came from someone named Abie Normal. Based on your incoherent and hate filled braying one oncludes you bring everything that it is in your power to bring to a discussion on health care by parroting the hive mind of your Chicago NAMBLA chapter.

    Since you lack the education and mentality to bring something of value up we can rest assuredthat the best you can do is imitate the rest of the insane clown posse in their minute of hate.

    Res ipsa loquitur.

    Thomas Jackson (8ffd46)

  292. #292

    My god what how did I ever sin enough to be reduced to Scotty’s level?

    Of course as we scan and review Scotty endless insults and attacks we find no evidence of argument just hate, endless hate. No arguments, evidence attempts to reason. Someone says something you dislike do not address it just fling feeces.

    This is reasoned discourse of the trolls. Chicago that is, especially the Chicago insane clown posse.

    Thomas Jackson (8ffd46)

  293. #292

    My god what how did I ever sin enough to be reduced to Scotty’s level?

    Of course as we scan and review Scotty endless insults and attacks we find no evidence of argument just hate, endless hate. No arguments, evidence attempts to reason. Someone says something you dislike do not address it just fling feeces.

    This is reasoned discourse of the trolls. Chicago that is, especially the Chicago insane clown posse.

    Thomas Jackson (8ffd46)

  294. Mr. Pink I’d forgive Daley, he has such self knowledge of himself.

    Thomas Jackson (8ffd46)

  295. This thread pretty much degenerated when people started accusing others of worshipping jackals.

    JD (abe6ab)

  296. And NAMBLA. That was a new one. Really persuasive.

    JD (abe6ab)

  297. JD

    In your case it is a golden calf.

    Thomas Jackson (8ffd46)

  298. Thomas,

    I have a BA in Criminal Justice, and a second BA in Psychology, UIC, 1979; a JD, Loyola, 1982; I have been licensed as an attorney in good standing in the Illinois state and federal courts since 1982; most of that time as a solo practitioner. Please tell us your education and experience.

    nk (aa7de7)

  299. JD

    I think they had this in mind when they wrote this

    Isiah 5:20-23.

    Indeed its rather obvious who caused the degeneration.

    Thomas Jackson (8ffd46)

  300. NK:

    Wow you’re a lawyer! So is Barrack and he managed to get into Columbia and then Havard. Anything I print here can’t be verified so whats the point? You call Loyola impressive? Its a third ranked school. Whats the matter couldn’t make Sullivan and Cromwell or a real law firm like Obama?

    Tell you what the next time I see an ambulance I’ll alert you.

    As we have seen before you know little, admit no errors despite them being pointed out to you by numerous people.

    If you can refrute anything I have said do so. Otherwise either shut up and stop flinging feeces or demonstrate that huge brain of yours and embarass me in front of the readers here by demonstrating how silly and uniformed my reasoning and evidence is.

    Since you have choosen not to do this but fling feeces it is clear what kind of lawyer and man you are.

    Did I hear an ambulance?

    Thomas Jackson (8ffd46)

  301. Thomas,

    You’re an idiot.

    nk (aa7de7)

  302. I have surmised from your rantings in the past that you were a receptionist in one of our consulates for a while until you were disabilited out for alcoholism. Am I close?

    nk (aa7de7)

  303. “embarass me in front of the readers here by demonstrating how silly and uniformed my reasoning and evidence is.”

    TJ – Keep going. You don’t need any help, you’re doing great.

    daleyrocks (718861)

  304. Jacko,

    1. Any regular to this blog will tell you that nk is one its smartest, most respected, long-standing commenters. He’s built up a hell of a lot of social capital here over the years.

    2. Until you detail your own resume, attacking nk’s resume makes you look like a jackass.

    3. None of us here can refute your “reasoning or evidence” because you have no reasoning or evidence. You have a lot of poorly formed insults, and little else.

    Leviticus (f565c1)

  305. And it’s “feces”, man. You can’t just drop the “l” out of “fleece”, even if they sound the same.

    Leviticus (f565c1)

  306. Comment by Leviticus — 8/18/2009 @ 5:00 pm

    To use the words of today’s youth…

    /this

    Well said, Leviticus.

    Scott Jacobs (d027b8)

  307. I’ve been gone most of the afternoon and now look what I’ve come home to find. It’s 7:34 PM where I live (CST). Get all your personal insults out of the way by 7:35 PM CST. Any further personal insults on this thread will earn the commenter a trip to moderation.

    DRJ (d8773e)

  308. Crap, mom’s home…

    Quick nk and JD… We better pretend to not be dirty commies son’s of bitches, or she and Patterico might find us out!

    Scott Jacobs (d027b8)

  309. And Leviticus! Hurry up and hide that Bible!

    :)

    Scott Jacobs (d027b8)

  310. Heh

    Leviticus (f565c1)

  311. No problem, DRJ.

    nk (aa7de7)

  312. Crap, is my tie straight? Is my tie straight?

    SPQR (26be8b)

  313. Oops, thanks Scott, I blanked the screen.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  314. Somebody should put away the bowls of cereal, as some around here have the potential to drown in such a hazard.

    Racist socialists !!!! Now quit worshipping jackals. NOW!

    JD (e91ae1)

  315. I had not understood that you had expanded the rule to Karl’s threads too, DRJ. It won’t happen again.

    You’re right, though. Too often discussions degenerate into name-calling, lately. And I’m as much to blame as anybody. In the end, it’s not worth it.

    nk (aa7de7)

  316. nk, which Loyola ?

    SPQR (26be8b)

  317. What did I miss?

    daleyrocks (718861)

  318. nk,

    I don’t generally intervene on someone else’s threads but this is a special intervention. In fact, given the tone of the recent comments, maybe we should call it divine intervention.

    DRJ (d8773e)

  319. I’m hoping you missed what was on my screen, daleyrocks.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  320. Hmm. I walked in late, but I have a feeling that the Lady of the Blog wouldn’t find that an acceptable excuse.

    But who left the damn pet door open?

    EW1(SG) (edc268)

  321. EW, what’s really funny is that everyone is pretty much on the same page.

    -All agree that destitute people should be helped.
    -All agree that health care reform is needed.
    -Most agree that significant government intervention is not going solve it (the arguments seemed to center on the degree of acceptable intervention — from zero to “lots”).
    -No one resorted to “momma” jokes.

    Total bloodbath :-)

    Pons Asinorum (20c241)

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