Patterico's Pontifications

9/25/2009

More ObamaCare delusions

Filed under: General — Karl @ 2:02 pm



[Posted by Karl]

It is understandable that after weeks and weeks of bad news, the left would be looking for good news, but is this the best the HuffPo can do?

Blocking a public health insurance option is a relatively low priority for conservative Blue Dog Democrats, according to an ongoing survey of its members. The fading House opposition could clear the way for the public option to move through the chamber.

But then, just a few grafs later:

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) was the catalyst for the Blue Dog self-reflection when she floated the idea that roughly 20 Blue Dogs could support a public option.

“There was some suggestion that there were 20,” Herseth Sandlin said. “There clearly are not. From the numbers that I have seen, although not everyone has submitted the surveys, even if they had and they all said yes it wouldn’t be 20. Right now it’s less than a dozen.”

Fewer than 12 Blue Dogs is momentum? Sorry, that’s not even Joementum. Indeed, the fact that the Blue Dogs and the Congressional Progressive Caucus are whipping their members in opposite directions belies the happy talk preceding today’s Democratic caucus sitdown. Blue Dogs are still openly complaining that Pelosi & Co. are endangering the House majority in 2010 by trying to ram through bills unpopular in the 84 districts held by Democrats but won by McCain in 2008 or Bush in 2004. The government-run insurer demanded by House liberals remains an unlikely prospect in the Senate. Sen. Ben Nelson (D-NE) still refuses to commit to back his party on a cloture vote. And so on.

Those confident that ObamaCare will pass are people like Megan McCardle (who is almost as confident Democrats will lose the House) and Nate Silver (who then goes on to list five serious obstacles to passage; his co-blogger Andrew Gelman also warns that the Dems could lose the House). Yet we are supposed to believe that it is the GOP committing suicide on the issue. Mickey Kaus is far less confident, as is Tom Daschle (who, for all of his faults, knows a bit about the healthcare issue and his former colleagues in Congress).

The happy talk seems to have stemmed from the fact that the polling on the issue has momentarily stabilized at a near-draw. However, as Jay Cost explains, a draw implies that some Democrats would have to take a very unpopular vote to pass ObamaCare.

The New York Times has a hard time sugar-coating the results of its new poll. And they cannot bear to tell their readers that even their traditional, skewed sample has more people thinking that the reforms on the table will hurt them personally, cost more, worsen their quality of care, and make it harder to see a doctor than think the opposite. Instead, the NYT spin here is that there is still a lot of confusion and ignorance about ObamaCare. Too bad for them that when the specifics get spotlighted, the Democrats end up folding.

Update: Kaus notes another biased NYT poll question, while noting that the NYT poll is engineered to produce useless results.

Update x2: Another, more subtle bias, for those interested in the art of polling.  Question 20 of the NYT poll asks — as the NYT has done since 1991:

Which of the following three statements comes closest to expressing your overall view of the health care system in the United States: 1. On the whole, the health care system works pretty well and only minor changes are necessary to make it work better. 2. There are some good things in our health care system, but fundamental changes are needed. 3. Our health care system has so much wrong with it that we need to completely rebuild it.

The percentage for “minor change” is about as high as it has ever been, and the percentage for “completely rebuild” is about as low as it has ever been.  But the percent in the middle is always between 50-60%.  It’s the nature of the structure of the question that is going to draw people to the middle.  This could be seen in almost every poll done about leaving Iraq — shall we leave tomorrow, never, or on the timetable that coincidentally is being pushed by Democrats?  Here, the NYT considers “fundamental changes” to be the “moderate”  position, and constructs the poll question to push its position as a scientific expression of public opinion.

–Karl

88 Responses to “More ObamaCare delusions”

  1. The best the Democrats will do is pass a law reducing the price of aspirin by 20%.

    This will be hailed by the msm as the greatest political victory ever and MSDNC will demand that Obama be added to Mt Rushmore. And any Republican that points out how useless it is will be branded as baby hating, racist & obsructionist.

    But damn, the Democrats will have HCR and will immediately start working on having the law be interpreted as mandating single payer health care.

    MU789 (511984)

  2. the reforms on the table will hurt them personally, cost more, worsen their quality of care, and make it harder to see a doctor

    Not to mention that they are not paid for, will not be paid for, and will run unsustainable deficits for as far as the eye can see. Nor will they control costs.

    JD (c48dbe)

  3. I am not sure how, but I am pretty sure you are all racists. There are codewords there, I can’t see them, but I guess that is what makes them codewords.

    JD (c48dbe)

  4. quagmire

    happyfeet (71f55e)

  5. Funny how Baucus still refuses to put the bill in it’s current form available for viewing on the web – actually, it’s not all that funny. Cowards, liars and quislings, oh my!

    Dmac (b905fa)

  6. Karl – And to your Update #2, once the Times publishes their mendacious poll, bored again will show up here using it to imply that overthrowing the entire system has widespread support.

    Have Blue (854a6e)

  7. NYT CBS Poll

    “Would you favor or oppose the government offering everyone a government administered health insurance plan — something like the Medicare coverage that people 65 and older get — that would compete with private health insurance plans?”

    The top-line result is 65% in favor, 26% opposed. Among Democrats only, it’s 81%-12%, and independents are at 61%-30%. And among Republican respondents, 47% are in favor, to 42% opposed.

    [And, as usual, the NYT is too afraid to ask the simple follow-up questions that cause support for the “public option” to crater in other polls. Not to mention that support for the “public option” used to be 72% in the NYT poll. — K]

    bored again (d80b5a)

  8. Now, as has been shown only about 9481049248 times around here, those numbers plummet when they talk about costs, deficits, access, taxes, rationing, etc …

    HaveBlue – That was some kind of idiot dog-whistle you did there.

    JD (c48dbe)

  9. Updated bored’s comment for you, JD.

    Karl (246941)

  10. CBO Estimates Show Public Plan With Higher Savings Rate.
    real plan and real public option saves $85 billion more in savings than the Blue Dog plan.
    http://www.nationaljournal.com/congressdaily/cda_20090925_6347.php

    A real public option is cheaper for everyone. The fiscally responsible “centrists” would rather waste people’s money.
    Attack the Obama plan all you want. It’s crap. He sold out to big Pharma. But what you have to worry about is that 47% of republicans want the real deal too.

    Sen Kyl: “I don’t need maternity care. So requiring that on my insurance policy is something that I don’t need and will make the policy more expensive.”

    Sen Stabenow: “I think your mom probably did.”

    A real values voter that one.

    bored again (d80b5a)

  11. I wasn’t really prescient here. The idiot bored again had already dropped the NYT’s turd in a previous thread.

    Hey bored, I polled my neighbors and 95% percent of them would like a spports car that you pay for. Make mine a Porsche.

    Have Blue (854a6e)

  12. I forgot to mention that people don’t want to pay $10 a week for the public option either.

    Just as well, as it allows me to note that bored’s comments are a perfect demonstration of the way folks on the left want to cling to cherry-picked, biased questions in a poll, instead of noticing that ObamaCare has been a disaster for the president and his party to date.

    Karl (246941)

  13. bored again’s figures are also bogus, but he doesn’t want to tell you that:

    “The numbers are based on oral communications between CBO staff and Pelosi’s office, a Pelosi spokesman said. They do not represent an official CBO estimate.”

    daleyrocks (718861)

  14. I thought Obama said he was going to pay my mortgage. I haven’t seen dollar one. He’s a big fat LIAR!

    How can we trust him with health care reform or cap and tax?

    daleyrocks (718861)

  15. Hmm.. so its either wasting money or it’s unfair competition.
    That’ called a catch 22.
    That’s where leadership comes in, and no one’s doing a good job of that. Kyle quote is hilarious. And here’s Cantor:

    “The constituent said she has a close relative in her early forties “who did have a wonderful, high-paying job, owns her own home, and is a a real contributing member of society.” Then she lost her job and found out she has stomach tumors and needs an operation.
    “She has no insurance,” the constituent said.
    “This person is a very close member of my family,” she said. “She’s ill. And she has no way to have this operation. So I’m asking you, what would you do if this were your close relative. Your niece, your aunt, your sister or whatever.”
    Cantor suggested looking into “an existing government program.”
    “There are programs, there are charitable organizations, there are hospitals here who do provide charity care,” he continued.
    “No one in this country, given who we are, should ever be sitting without an option to go be addressed.”
    And apparently this Republican wants us to rely on government and the charity of others to ensure that.”

    Limbaugh; “You shouldn’t have broken your wrist!”
    Joke or not, he meant it.

    Yes Americans are pretty stupid. 2/3 think the republicans are being obstructionist and 2/3 think the democrats should be bi-partisan. Go figure.

    But assuming you’re not stupid what is your principled argument against health insurance? What’s the moral logic?
    You lose on the math. You lose on death panels, which insurance companies and the state of Texas have [and please don’t lie again about Texas the futile care law.] What you have is an ideological fixation on the need for destructive chaos. Better the fact of corporations playing unaccountably with human life on the basis of greed than the possibility of government which can be held accountable acting on the basis of stinginess.
    This just in “Boehner Constituent May Have Died Of Swine Flu Because She Lacked Insurance”
    The hits just keep on coming.

    bored again (d80b5a)

  16. Hey, Democrats! Although I left your silly party over a decade ago, my heart is still essentially with your platform and agenda. That being said, I would ask all of you to think of me as Dr. Degan, your loving and trusted family veterinarian. After a complete and thorough examination of your beloved pets, it grieves me to offer you this final diagnosis:

    Your Blue Dogs must be put to sleep.

    http://www.tomdegan.blogspot.com

    Tom Degan
    Goshen, NY

    [note: fished from spam filter. –Stashiu]

    Tom Degan (694f01)

  17. daleyrocks – I thought Obama said he was going to pay my mortgage. I haven’t seen dollar one. He’s a big fat LIAR!

    HEY! What about the gas for my car?

    Gas prices are higher than during the election! That evil Bush and Cheney are still rigging the prices from behind the scenes!

    Apogee (e2dc9b)

  18. Hmm.. so its either wasting money or it’s unfair competition.
    That’ called a catch 22.

    No, that’s called a false choice.

    Apogee (e2dc9b)

  19. bored “writes”:

    Hmm.. so its either wasting money or it’s unfair competition.
    That’ called a catch 22.

    No, it’s called how government runs things. As I’ve documented here, the alleged lower administrative costs of Medicare are a myth, and one basis of the unfair competition built into a “public option.” Indeed, as noted at the link, if admin costs are low because you have few controls on claims payment, costs will rise in the long term.

    So no wonder the rest of that last comment was the rhetorical fish flopping around in the bottom of the boat.

    Karl (246941)

  20. 85 billion cheaper than hundred of billions is supposed to make it better? That does not make it even close to the standard coughcoughbullcoughshitcough that Barcky established.

    JD (c48dbe)

  21. bored again you are an abject idiot.

    Corporations ar unaccountable and government is?

    BULLSHIT!

    Corporations get sued every day and plaintifs win all the time. In fact the bullshit story Obama used in his health care speech about a man who was denied care turned out to be false.

    As for Governments – Ever hear of Soveriegn Immunity? Yeah thats where the government states that you have no recourse against their decisions and can not sue them afterwards, the exact opposite of the case with corporations.

    Have Blue (854a6e)

  22. bored again – You Won. Pass what you want. You got a new Senator in Massachusetts today. The Republicans can’t stop you.

    Stop whining and get on with it.

    daleyrocks (718861)

  23. Bitch.

    I forgot that part.

    daleyrocks (718861)

  24. corporations playing unaccountably with human life on the basis of greed than the possibility of government which can be held accountable acting on the basis of stinginess.

    Government accountability? Sure. Ever try suing the government, vs. suing a corporation?

    Nobody wants to bet their life on the pipe dream of accountability from a future election cycle, since you already advise at 4:14pm to Attack the Obama plan all you want. It’s crap. He sold out to big Pharma. I guess Obama will be stepping down any day now.

    Stop lying that people that oppose these secret plans (that somehow can’t be posted on the web) that you support don’t want reformation of the health care system. We do want reform. What we don’t want is a scam that will waste money and kill people.

    Apogee (e2dc9b)

  25. Sen Kyl: “I don’t need maternity care. So requiring that on my insurance policy is something that I don’t need and will make the policy more expensive.”

    Sen Stabenow: “I think your mom probably did.”

    A real values voter that one.

    Comment by bored again

    This appears to be a lefty talking point as it came up on Wash Monthly this morning. I posted a couple of comments informing them that routine maternity was NOT covered in most health policies until the 70s. So Kyl’s mother most likely did NOT rely on it. This is how phony themes get launched.

    The debate, which has now disappeared from the comments over there, continued by my pointing out that the essence of insurance is to spread the risk of events that are not predictable. Routine pregnancy is not an insurable risk but is instead prepaid care. I have nothing against people buying insurance that covers pregnancy and paying more for it. It may well be cheaper than saving the money and paying cash. It should not be part of a mandated insurance plan because it is a choice, not a risk. Especially with abortion available.

    My younger son was born in 1969 and routine delivery was not covered. The hospital bill for mother and child was less than $500. Five years later, the same care would have been ten times as much. The argument about covering routine pregnancy resulted in a debate about the moral hazard of c-section because it was covered and routine pregnancy wasn’t. After routine pregnancy and delivery was covered, the incidence of c-section did NOT go down, showing how these false themes drive policy. The highest incidence of c-section in the world is in Brazil, for some reason.

    These people just do not know what they are talking about but they are dismissive of those who do know. As Rumsfeld once said, “the problem is with the things you don’t know you don’t know.”

    Mike K (2cf494)

  26. Mike K – But they are smarter than you. They are certain of it.

    daleyrocks (718861)

  27. Mike K,

    The difference is that Rumsfeld was referring to truly unknown unknowns. The mopes at Wash Monthly (and other lefty blogs) could know, bc it is easily knowable. They just don’t want to know.

    Karl (246941)

  28. Here is another interesting facet of this debate that the general public is almost completely ignorant of. It’s a physician member only site so I will post the comment and note there are already 101 comments posted.

    FtF: Will Proposed HC Reforms Speed Move to Cash Practices?

    The past two weeks have seen polls come out that would appear to portray physicians with diametrically opposite positions in the current healthcare debate. A September 14th poll of 5,157 physicians in New England Journal of Med… indicates that:

    * 63% of physicians support a combined public/private approach to coverage (i.e. the healthcare reform approach currently proposed)

    A poll two days later by IBD/TIPP of 1,376, also randomly selected physicians, indicated that:

    * 65% say they oppose the proposed healthcare plan
    * 45% of the respondents stated that they would consider leaving medicine if the reforms were in fact enacted

    In parallel, there has been a dramatic acceleration in the number of discussions around cash-on… While fee-for-service or “cash only” practices have long been a popular topic on Sermo, there appears to be increasing interest in this as the healthcare debate has progressed. Given the growing impact of this trend, the media is asking the Sermo physician community to help asses this trend and the possible impact on the physician-patient relationship.

    Sermo is the site and is a growing alternative to the AMA. Most non-MDs are oblivious to the fact that thousands of physicians are now either dropping out of Medicare or considering it.

    At Wash Monthly they still post alleged anecdotes about doctors they “know” who have racing stables and lavish lifestyles. In fact, there still are some who do very well but they are older and, like me, had no student loans to pay and spent years practicing in the era of good reimbursement. Those days are gone, for the most part for new docs.

    This is a very interesting discussion as Medicare beneficiaries may have a hell of a time getting a doc who accepts Medicare payment. Since charging more than Medicare pays is a criminal act, the docs just quit Medicare and have nothing to do with it.

    They just don’t know what they don’t know.

    Mike K (2cf494)

  29. “as ad hominem is twice as good coming from someone who used to advise Enron.”

    Once for a two day meeting. Look it up.

    On the rest, read up some more about Robert Book and Krugman and read the comments as well. Or read of on France, Germany, japan, etc. Krugman again, in response to Book:
    “Medicare Advantage plans are private insurance serving the elderly population. So this is a case of different systems serving similar populations. (Medicare Advantage clients are probably somewhat healthier than the average senior, but the average cost of their health care is still very high.) If costs depended mainly on number of people, these plans should have low administrative costs as a percentage of spending. They don’t — their numbers look like those of private insurance in general.

    Meanwhile, other countries have Medicare-like systems that cover low-cost as well as high-cost individuals. Canada’s system is actually called Medicare. So this is a similar system covering a different, lower-cost population. If costs depended on the number of people, Canada should have high administrative costs; in fact, its numbers look like those of American Medicare (actually even better.)”
    —-

    New England Journal of Medicine:
    Costs of Health Care Administration in the United States and Canada
    “Results In 1999, health administration costs totaled at least $294.3 billion in the United States, or $1,059 per capita, as compared with $307 per capita in Canada. After exclusions, administration accounted for 31.0 percent of health care expenditures in the United States and 16.7 percent of health care expenditures in Canada. Canada’s national health insurance program had overhead of 1.3 percent; the overhead among Canada’s private insurers was higher than that in the United States (13.2 percent vs. 11.7 percent). Providers’ administrative costs were far lower in Canada.

    Between 1969 and 1999, the share of the U.S. health care labor force accounted for by administrative workers grew from 18.2 percent to 27.3 percent. In Canada, it grew from 16.0 percent in 1971 to 19.1 percent in 1996. (Both nations’ figures exclude insurance-industry personnel.)

    Conclusions The gap between U.S. and Canadian spending on health care administration has grown to $752 per capita. A large sum might be saved in the United States if administrative costs could be trimmed by implementing a Canadian-style health care system.”

    The thing you have to remember about Heritage is that it’s funded by corporations who have a financial interest in the topic s its involved in. Administrative costs vary depending on how you define them, and then there’s this thing called “profit” and how much of that do insurance companies make, with their death panels?

    bored again (d80b5a)

  30. Mike K: “I have nothing against people buying insurance that covers pregnancy and paying more for it. It may well be cheaper than saving the money and paying cash. It should not be part of a mandated insurance plan because it is a choice, not a risk. Especially with abortion available.

    That just about says it all.

    bored again (d80b5a)

  31. Doubling down on the asshattery is always a good idea, bored again.

    JD (c48dbe)

  32. Notice that bored again still glosses over that he got caught flogging bogus CBO numbers.

    Typical of the dishonesty from Pelosi/Obama shills.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  33. I am more likely to listen to my 1 year old and 7 year old daughters for political and economic opinions than I am to listen to the little midget-boy whiny arse named Krugman.

    JD (c48dbe)

  34. Mike at Washington Monthly”
    If you want to go to the French system, and I do, it is very different from the bills currently in Congress including the “public option.”

    Any other takers here for the French option?
    Sign me up.

    bored again (d80b5a)

  35. bored – Why don’t you get your congresscritters on board first? Since none of theirs are anywhere near the system Mike K discusses, it is really rather pointless.

    JD (c48dbe)

  36. “Since none of theirs are anywhere near the system Mike K discusses…”
    So you’re now on board with the democratic base?
    Good. Then it’s the people against our so called representatives.
    As I said, I’m in.

    bored again (d80b5a)

  37. “Since none of theirs are anywhere near the system Mike K discusses…”
    So you’re now on board with the democratic base?
    Good. Then it’s the people against our so called representatives.
    As I said, I’m in.

    Comment by bored again

    Once again, you have no idea what you are talking about.

    The French system:

    1. The patient pays the doctor first and gets reimbursed later.
    2. The health plan payment is fixed but the sector II doctors can charge more than the plan pays. They do have to post fees.
    3. There is fee for service with completely free choice of physician and hospital.
    4. The health plan is funded by payroll deduction except for CMU which is tax funded. CMU began as a fund for the poor but is now full of British ex-pats who don’t want any part of the NHS.
    5. About one third of the hospitals are private and some are for-profit.
    6. About 25% of the coverage is by private health insurance.
    7. French medical education is free.

    There is very little in common with the present Obama plan, such as it is.

    There is a lot of this that we could do as incremental reforms, beginning with Medicare balance billing.

    Instead, bored’s friends want to expand Medicare with the same fee schedule. That will complete the exodus of doctors. It might be an interesting experiment but Obama will choose criminal penalties to force doctors into involuntary servitude. That is what sank Hillary’s plan.

    Mike K (2cf494)

  38. My kingdom for an honest troll.

    JD (c48dbe)

  39. Mike K – You have obviously confuse bored with someone that is in possession of honesty, decency, and integrity, qualities it sorely lacks.

    JD (c48dbe)

  40. It might be an interesting experiment but Obama will choose criminal penalties to force doctors into involuntary servitude.

    I might have considered that a tongue-in-cheek comment awhile back, but considering how screwed up a variety of “leftys” are in today’s America — and how President “Goddamn America” is even worse than I thought he’d be — I wouldn’t put it past the liberal elite in DC to sic the IRS on doctors who are trying to drop out of treating Medicare patients.

    If the left has no qualms about the already meddlesome IRS going out and forcing the public to pour money into some healthcare plan, then who knows how much more extreme it (ie, the left and government fiefdoms like the IRS) can get after that.

    Mark (411533)

  41. “Administrative costs vary depending on how you define them”

    bored again – Yes, yes they do. It’s too bad you have not even attempted to make an apples to apples comparison between public and private plans in your comments or in your U.S. versus Canada comparison. Par for the course.

    How do you define administrative workers and why do you think they might be going up? You always expert analysis and why it is relevant to the topic at hand, please?

    daleyrocks (718861)

  42. The involuntary servitude for doctors has already been broached by one of the LA Times’ lefties, David Lazarus.

    Why not make a week or two of community service a condition of medical licensing? If you want to practice medicine in California, let’s say, you would need to volunteer every year.

    How would Lazarus react to being told that because of journalism’s vital importance to our democracy, he must donate a week or two of his labor for no compensation?

    Brother Bradley J. Fikes, C.O.R. (0ea407)

  43. Didn’t Mao make these kinds of suggestions, Bradley? Send the city workers out to till the fields, etc?

    As I recall, there was (delicately put) quite the cost.

    This how “service” in the hands of autocrats works out, too often, on our sad little planet.

    Eric Blair (184ac1)

  44. So thats it then. We go with France.
    Good.

    “Most general physicians are in private practice but draw their income from the publicly funded insurance funds. These funds, unlike their German counterparts, have never gained management responsibility. Instead the government has taken responsibility for the financial and operational management of health insurance (by setting premium levels related to income and determining the prices of goods and services refunded).[1] It generally refunds patients 70% of most health care costs, and 100% in case of costly or long-term ailments. Supplemental coverage may be bought from private insurers, most of them nonprofit, mutual insurers. ”
    etc etc.

    bored again (d80b5a)

  45. Of course it quotes from Wikipedia.

    Brother Bradley J. Fikes, C.O.R. (0ea407)

  46. That, Bradley, is because this person is all about being contrary and alphabetist. That’s it. It’s just a game.

    Eric Blair (184ac1)

  47. No, gentlemen. It is a cheerleading mendoucheous sycophantic arse. On its good days

    JD (b9706a)

  48. Reading myself referred to as “it” It’s like I’m arguing the psychopath in Silence of the Lambs.
    Anything to avoid the facts.
    And what about this? Kaiser Family Foundations:

    “The government automatically enrolls all residents into the basic public health insurance system based on occupational status. The 0.4% of the population not covered by Sécurité Sociale, such as the unemployed,is mandated to carry universal health coverage (couverture maladie universelle, or CMU). It is available to all those living in France for three months or longer, and provides coverage under the basic public health insurance scheme, and free complementary private coverage.

    There are approximately 30 conditions – including cancer, diabetes and other chronic conditions – for which a citizen may receive 100% coverage of health care. This includes all pharmaceuticals, including experimental drugs.”
    kaiseredu.org/topics_im_ihs.asp?imID=4&parentID=61

    And this is funny:
    “But here’s the stunner: In the very same poll, respondents were asked whether they favored a Medicare-like public option for everyone. The right-wingers were out there in roughly the same numbers that they registered in answering the other questions: 26 percent of respondents said they opposed the public option. But a whopping 65 supported it.

    Think about that. The public option has been demonized non-stop for the past half-year; it’s the key to the Republican charge that instituting such a program is tantamount to bringing socialism to America. They have clearly rallied the Republican base to this position, just as they rallied the base to fear the coming of death panels and publicly-subsidized immigrant care. But whereas pluralities of Americans simply said they didn’t know enough to believe one thing or the other about death panels and immigrant care, virtually all Americans not in the Republican base support the public option.”

    bored again (d80b5a)

  49. I’ll bet he feels so much better now, cutting and pasting. It’s much easier than, well, actually researching a topic and reading some books. And it allows him to cheerlead for his political party, which is the real point (you can tell, as with most progressive Leftists, because they accuse others of what they themselves do).

    Oh, he’ll also say he was once a “concerned conservative” next.

    Riiiggghhht.

    Eric Blair (184ac1)

  50. I wonder if the Troll actually knows how to post a link, instead of the infamous “wall ‘o text” idiocy.

    Dmac (b905fa)

  51. So it knows how to copy and paste. And to ignore inconvenient truths, such as the plummeting support for Obama among voters.

    Funny, support for ObamaCare among voters is also down. Rasmussen Reports said a record 56 percent of voters oppose ObamaCare.

    How does this square with its claim that “virtually all Americans not in the Republican base support the public option.” Simple. Those were the words of Washington Post lefty Harold Meyerson, giving his spin on a New York Times/CBS poll. The poll itself is discussed in a NYT article headlined, “In Poll, Public Wary of Obama on War and Health”.

    “The poll found that an intense campaign by Mr. Obama to rally support behind his health care plan — including an address to Congress, a run of television interviews and rallies across the country — appears to have done little to allay concerns.”

    It lied as usual. Google is not its friend.

    Brother Bradley J. Fikes, C.O.R. (0ea407)

  52. Bradley, I don’t know how much of this is due to lazy trollishness, game playing, or sheer mindless alphabetism.

    The real question is, does it matter?

    Eric Blair (184ac1)

  53. Eric,
    All of the above, probably. The only importance is to show just how much it and others like it have to lie and deceive to claim ObamaCare has majority support. Of course, we’ve already seen this. The trolls all blur into each other, because they argue the same way and try the same deceptions. And a few of them even try the “former staunch conservative” route, which is especially hilarious, because those phonies are so easily spotted.

    There are certainly some people who honestly argue for ObamaCare, but our crop of trolls aren’t among them.

    Brother Bradley J. Fikes, C.O.R. (0ea407)

  54. This is why I call them alphabetists. I don’t know what they really believe in. They may not, either.

    Eric Blair (184ac1)

  55. “But a whopping 65 supported it.”

    bored again – I’ll point out the disconnect again. If ObamaCare and the public option is as popular as you claim, why is there such a massive carpet spin campaign going on in the media to get it passed. You control Congress. Stop whining. Just bring it to the floor and pass it. What is stopping you? Simple question.

    daleyrocks (718861)

  56. From The Onion’s Twitter account
    BREAKING: Democrats Hoping To Take Control Of Congress From Republican Minority In 2010

    Brother Bradley J. Fikes, C.O.R. (0ea407)

  57. Think about that. The public option has been demonized non-stop for the past half-year; it’s the key to the Republican charge that instituting such a program is tantamount to bringing socialism to America.

    The fact is that there is no method for funding this program. That is the reason for opposing it. In my talk to the Republican group, I had a slide of the Medicare Part A “trust fund.” It shows that in 2011 the expenditures pass revenues. That is NOW, without the public option or any of the schemes of “Medicare for all.”

    Trolls like bored again, and unfortunately this ahistorical president, do not understand economics. The incentives in Medicare do not control demand and try to control spending by cutting reimbursement of providers. For that reason, doctors are quitting.

    The reason why I like the French system is that it does have some incentives to control spending, like paying the doctor first and getting reimbursement later. They also set a basic reimbursement and allow doctors and hospitals to charge more. If a patient wants a certain doctor, or hospital, they can pay more and have free choice.

    The French system also has effectiveness research but I fear that our own system, especially under the Democrats, will not be controlled by science but by politics. I support the feature that pays 100% for certain catastrophic diagnoses like cancer and diabetes. That 100% coverage is for the diagnosis, not the patient, so treatment of other conditions is still subject to the rules.

    Sector I reimbursement is lower than here but the doctors who accept sector I get pensions and other benefits. Medical school in France is free and generally does not require a college degree to enter.

    This would have to be modified to accommodate our society but it is a useful model and it is the only good system in a country close to ours in size.

    MIke K (2cf494)

  58. Here is a good question that no one has yet answered.

    Why not all insurance (life, auto, fire, flood, etc.) be nationalized?

    Michael Ejercito (833607)

  59. Why not all insurance (life, auto, fire, flood, etc.) be nationalized?
    Comment by Michael Ejercito — 9/26/2009 @ 9:47 am

    That’s the eventual goal Michael.

    Stashiu3 (8cadeb)

  60. Some liberals are wising up to ObamaCare’s implications.

    Weisberg put his finger on the underlying trend: “Because Democrats hold power at the moment, they face the greater peril of paternalistic overreaching.” Today’s morality cops are less interested in your bedroom than your refrigerator. They’re more likely to berate you for outdoor smoking than for outdoor necking. It isn’t God who hates fags. It’s Michael Bloomberg.

    Brother Bradley J. Fikes, C.O.R. (0ea407)

  61. They don’t understand insurance. What they want is for things to be free. That’s the way it was when their parents paid for everything. Why can’t life be that way ? I see a trend through the lefty web sites. On economics, they want everyone to be equal. If you don’t feel like working, somebody will take care of it. On a site the other day, the writer commented on interviewing new applicants for a law firm position. The applicant said, “I want you to know that my family comes first. No 90 hour weeks for me.” The writer’s comment was, “Walmart is hiring.”

    I saw the same thing in looking for someone to join our surgery practice 20 years ago. Some of it is reimbursement. If your income is going to be capped, the incentive to put in 100 hour weeks is lower. Even considering that, I got questions about vacation and benefits. Fair enough but we are becoming a society in which the work ethic is weaker. The left has none at all.

    I’m reading Hard America, Soft America for some thoughts about it. We now have the soft America people in charge although they, themselves, will get what they can, usually by chicanery. California is going under from excessive regulation and taxes. This is part of the same theme.

    Mike K (2cf494)

  62. Spot on, Mike K, and it’s not just in the area of health care. Last week we Californians were treated the opening of the fall academic quarter and a mass protest at the University of California campuses of students and faculty demanding more education for less money. Just as the left expects cutting-edge healthcare paid for by someone else, so too do they demand a world-class education, with first-rate facility staffed by highly-paid employees, somehow all delivered on the cheap.

    JVW (d1215a)

  63. Just as the left expects cutting-edge healthcare paid for by someone else, so too do they demand a world-class education, with first-rate facility staffed by highly-paid employees, somehow all delivered on the cheap.

    This mentality is far too common.

    When oil prices were skyrocketing, nobody in Congress pointed out that oil is a nonrenewable resource and over the decades, oil prices would inevitably rise. Instead, those people in Congress chose to blame greed.

    Michael Ejercito (833607)

  64. faculty demanding more education for less money

    Good. Pay cuts across the board and Boards, then. Every dime cut goes directly to tuition cuts. Nice to have some leftists advocating spending cuts for a change. Other than defense, that is. Matter of fact, I’ll be happy to do some porky DOD redlining myself if that’d make them happy. Nah, nothing makes a lefty happy, not even winning. It’s always something…must be that dependency thing.

    political agnostic (091271)

  65. “What they want is for things to be free. That’s the way it was when their parents paid for everything. Why can’t life be that way ?”

    Mike K – I’ve said many times here that it’s all about cost shifting and that the left doesn’t understand the principles of insurance or basic economics. Getting everything for free from the government means eventually you run out of other peoples’ money to pay for things, especially when north of 40% of country already pays no federal income tax thanks to Bush’s tax cuts for the wealthy. When other peoples’ money starts becoming your own money, that’s when the lefties start hollering – just look at the noise raised when employers try to institute copays in a union health care plan.

    daleyrocks (718861)

  66. nobody in Congress pointed out that oil is a nonrenewable resource and over the decades, oil prices would inevitably rise.

    Well, when you’ve got the farking Speaker of the House stating that natural gas is not a fossil fuel, what else could you expect? Their widespread ignorance on science is only exceeded by their widespread ignorance on healthcare, finance, the military…

    Dmac (b905fa)

  67. Now its a question of morality. The game changes again. “Soft America.” But Mike I thought you liked the health policy of the French cheese eating surrender monkeys?

    I live in a state that pays more into the federal coffers than it receives in services so my rich blue state subsidizes the poorer red states in the south. Would you call those poorer states Soft America? You defend the argument that life should be hard by defending the laziness of the rich. Let them eat cake!

    Maybe you should read this from an: Urban Institute Study
    ourfuture.org/blog-entry/2009072702/memo-deficit-hawks-public-plan-option-indisputably-saves-money

    “health insurance markets today, by and large, are simply not competitive. And as such, these markets are not providing the benefits one would expect from competition, including efficient operations and consequent control over health care costs. We believe that the concentration in the insurance and hospital industries that has taken place over the past several years has been a significant contributor to this problem. The role of the government plan is to counter the adverse impacts of market concentration and, in doing so, slow the growth in health care costs.”

    The insurance industry exemplifies soft america.
    balkin.blogspot.com/2009/09/you-have-no-idea.html

    ” a recent study in the American Journal of Medicine of personal bankruptcies in the United States.In 2007, 62% of all personal bankruptcies were driven by medical costs.”Nationally, a quarter of firms cancel coverage immediately when an employee suffers a disabling illness; another quarter do so within a year,” the report states.Most of the medical debtors were well educated, owned homes, and had middle-class occupations, and three-quarters of them had health insurance. “Unless you’re a Warren Buffett or Bill Gates, you’re one illness away from financial ruin in this country,” lead author Steffie Woolhandler, M.D., of the Harvard Medical School, said in an interview. “If an illness is long enough and expensive enough, private insurance offers very little protection against medical bankruptcy, and that’s the major finding in our study.”

    The CBO has said unofficially that the public option is much cheaper. We’ll wait for the official report. But remember also that the CBO is not mandated to study the savings to citizens and the larger economy, they only deal with the USG as such. So that’s a lot more savings.
    You complain about california regs but Scandinavia is first out of the recession and they’re regulated like you wouldn’t believe. So maybe its something else. In fact we know it is. The tax situation in California is absurd. And Schwarzenegger is running the state economy off a cliff. Every policy that’s worked against this recession is from the toolkit that you call immoral or illogical. Massive stimulus in China or socialism in western Europe.
    The facts prove you wrong in every single case.

    bored again (d80b5a)

  68. Well, here is the voice of authority:

    “…The facts prove you wrong in every single case….”

    Um. The Great Voice of Authority speaks. Boy, we were all put in our place by your history of, well, accuracy here.

    This character is just a troll, and is a knee jerk supporter of his One. He has no expertise or knowledge beyond Pelosi style talking points.

    What a tool. Literally.

    Eric Blair (0b61b2)

  69. A fact for the troll: Costs invariably rise with government-mandated health care. Massachusetts, for example,

    The state’s major health insurers plan to raise premiums by about 10 percent next year, prompting many employers to reduce benefits and shift additional costs to workers.

    Increases will range from 7 to 12 percent, capping a decade of consecutive double-digit premium increases, according to a Globe survey of the state’s top health insurers. Actual rates for 2010 will depend on the size of the employer and the type of coverage, with small businesses and individuals expected to be hit hardest. Overall, premiums are more than twice as high as they were 10 years ago.

    The higher insurance costs undermine a key tenet of the state’s landmark health care law passed two years ago, as well as President Obama’s effort to overhaul health care. In addition to mandating insurance for most residents, the Massachusetts bill sought to rein in health care costs. With Washington looking to the Massachusetts experience, fears about higher costs have become a stumbling block to passing a national health care bill.

    Brother Bradley J. Fikes, C.O.R. (0ea407)

  70. C’mon, Bradley. We are all “wrong in every case.” Remember?

    A troll said so.

    Eric Blair (0b61b2)

  71. Eric, I was also guilty of quoting from that notorious right-wing paper, the Boston Globe.

    Brother Bradley J. Fikes, C.O.R. (0ea407)

  72. “Every policy that’s worked against this recession is from the toolkit that you call immoral or illogical.”

    bored again – Sorry, but we’re not out of a recession. Try again.

    Also, how is a government option that progressive politicians have openly admitted is just a step toward the goal of single payer health care intended to promote competition and control prices? Will the government compete against itself?

    daleyrocks (718861)

  73. I think this character sings the Obama song nightly. Right? Or “Left?” is more accurate, I suppose.

    Eric Blair (0b61b2)

  74. Actually, bored, the facts bore us out, not you. Scandanavia has been reversing its regulation and reducing taxes in recent years and did not do massive faux “stimulus” plans this last recession. The massive interventions here have failed to reverse the economic downturn and in fact by the Obama administration’s own projections were failures.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  75. The CBO has said unofficially that the public option is much cheaper.

    The public option is only cheaper if they use Medicare rates to pay doctors. That would result in a massive exodus from the government program.

    The Huff Po says “The cost over ten years would be $1.042 trillion — markedly less than estimates of Senate plans with less coverage and no public option.”

    So, it’s cheaper than what ? Only a trillion ?

    Yeah, you’re a big help.

    You complain about california regs but Scandinavia is first out of the recession and they’re regulated like you wouldn’t believe

    Yeah, you are sure an expert on Sweden, alright.

    Sweden Announces Income Tax Cuts to Boost Jobs
    Part of overall tax reduction program to stimulate employment

    What an expert !

    We need better trolls.

    Mike K (2cf494)

  76. What’s the tax rate now in Sweden?
    Not like ours at all.

    What was the tax rate during the American boom years?
    Top Tax Rate in the US in 1955 – 91%

    bored again (d80b5a)

  77. bored again, the top tax rate in the US can’t be compared to the current tax rate because of the large number of methods of sheltering income that were eliminated at the same time that tax rates were lowered.

    Its pretty hilarious to watch your attempts to obfuscate when you’ve been caught in yet another misrepresentation.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  78. Actually, I lied. Its not hilarious any longer.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  79. Again, he is In Service, folks. Keep that in mind. There is a substitute for religion in our culture. And you are seeing it with his posts.

    Eric Blair (0b61b2)

  80. Bored, no doubt, has never seen a chart of US tax revenues over decades. You know what ? It is unchanged at about 19% for the past 60 years. Why ? They call them tax shelters. The lefties have never learned economics so they think that people actually pay marginal tax rates. How can they be that stupid ?

    There is an interesting chart here . Scroll down to the quintiles effective tax rate.

    Here is a better link. Among other things, those charts show that high income taxpayers ALWAYS pay a higher share of income in tax.

    We need better trolls.

    Mike K (2cf494)

  81. But I thought you liked the French?

    cbpp.org/files/4-10-06tax4.pdf

    Overall Federal Tax Burdens Are Low
    • Congressional Budget Office data show that most categories of households paid a smaller
    percentage of their income in federal taxes in 2003 than in any year on record, with data going
    back to 1979. These data, from a Congressional Budget Office study that covers the 1979-2003
    period, include households’ total federal tax burdens, including income, payroll, excise, and
    other taxes.1

    • For example, households in the middle fifth of the income spectrum paid an average of 13.6
    percent of their income in federal taxes in 2003, the lowest level for any year between 1979 and
    2003. Even in 2000, before the recent tax cuts, these households paid a smaller share of their
    income in federal taxes than in any year since 1979.

    • The top one percent of households paid 31.4 percent of their income in federal taxes in 2003,
    the lowest level since 1992, and also lower than in 1979, 1980, and 1981, the first years covered
    in the CBO study. This percentage is higher than in the 1980s and the early 1990s, largely due
    to the effects of the very large tax cuts benefiting high-income households that were enacted in
    1981.

    • The tax burden fell significantly in 2003, with the phasing in of more of the tax cuts enacted in
    2001 and the enactment of additional new tax cuts. In particular, high-income taxpayers
    benefited from the reduction of the top rate from 38.6 percent in 2002 to 35 percent and from
    the reductions in capital gains and dividend taxes that took effect in 2003.

    …• Households that make more than $1 million a year are receiving an average tax cut of about
    $111,000 in 2006 from the 2001 and 2003 tax cuts, according to estimates by the Urban
    Institute-Brookings Institution Tax Policy Center. This is nearly 150 times the size of the
    average tax cut that families in the middle of the income scale are receiving ($748).

    • In 2006, the tax cuts will increase the after-tax incomes of this “millionaire” group by 5.7
    percent, more than twice as much as the percentage gain for families in the middle of the
    income scale (2.5 percent).

    Read the whole thing.

    Read “How I Became a Keynesian” by…
    Richard…Posner!!??
    tnr.com/article/how-i-became-keynesian

    Look up the charts for Bush Tax cuts and the deficit.
    Look at the charts for Obama and the deficit. It’s right here.
    nytimes.com/interactive/2009/06/09/business/economy/20090610-leonhardt-graphic.html
    Effective Tax Rates by country.
    Look at sweden and the US
    economist.com/displaystory.cfm?story_id=14340551

    bored again (d80b5a)

  82. So maybe its something else. In fact we know it is.

    I know what it is, but you don’t seem to, seeing your obsession with tax rates.

    Tax rates and regulations have very little to do with why Sweden is first out of the recession while we are still wallowing in it. It comes down, primarily, to the fact that the US’ cumulative debt across all sectors is over $50 trillion right now; outstanding mortgage debt is over $16 trillion, outstanding consumer debt is over $2 trillion(and credit card defaults are now over 11%) and the government’s debt is over $12 trillion. Combined with a U3 that has been waffling at 9.6% and a U6 at 16.8% (and rising), and any suggestions that merely raising the tax rate back to pre-1980 levels will fix the problem are laughable at best.

    Raising the tax rate isn’t going to solve the problem, only lowering our debt across all sectors will accomplish that, and the only logical choice left will be for Americans to stop buying all the cheap chinese crap and other goodies they don’t need, and deleverage their debt (in other words, stop spending money they don’t have). For both state and federal governments, that would mean cutting back spending, but we all know that isn’t going to happen–Obama would rather have Uncle Ben issue Cali-style IOUs than cut government spending.

    So the theory that healthcare, or health insurance, or whatever the hell leftists are calling it this week, reform, is the most important issue of our day is simply inaccurate. Ending roughly 35 years of debt accumulation is far more important to the long-term economic well-being of this country, before we end up being de jure economic vassals of China as opposed to the de facto vassals to them that we are right now.

    Another Chris (f29ad3)

  83. bored again – So you want to tax our way to economic recovery? That’s your plan? Beautiful, just beautiful! What kind of drugs are you taking?

    daleyrocks (718861)

  84. Bored

    • The tax burden fell significantly in 2003, with the phasing in of more of the tax cuts enacted in
    2001 and the enactment of additional new tax cuts. In particular, high-income taxpayers
    benefited from the reduction of the top rate from 38.6 percent in 2002 to 35 percent and from
    the reductions in capital gains and dividend taxes that took effect in 2003.

    Let’s look at Federal income tax revenues after those 2003 rate cuts:

    (In Billions of $)
    2003 793,699
    2004 808,959
    2005 927,222
    2006 1,043,908
    2007 1,163,472
    2008 1,145,747

    http://www.whitehouse.gov/omb/budget/Historicals/

    Bored, can you explain why income tax revenues rose after those ’03 rate cuts?

    Meanwhile in Canada with its marvelous single payer “public option,” er public monoploy the LA Times reports:

    “In Canada, a move toward a private healthcare option

    In British Columbia, private clinics and surgical centers are capitalizing on patients who might otherwise pay for faster treatment in the U.S. The courts will consider their legality next month.” The story goes on to describe how a woman waited several months to see a specialist who referred her to another specialist who after a lengthy wait told her that she needed surgery for which she would wait another year and a half. Instead of waiting she came to the US. She had the surgery within two days at a cost of $50,000.

    Stu707 (0981d5)

  85. bored again, we have a lot of tax data since 2003. You really need to educate yourself, as you are the quintessential Google ignorant. You google for an article that says what you want it to say, usually just missing your target because you don’t really understand what you are opining upon.

    The Bush tax cuts have been quite overmatched in terms of deficit by the Obama spending binge.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  86. SPQR, the facts don’t matter here. The feelings do. That is what this all about.

    Eric Blair (0b61b2)

  87. Eric Blair, granted. But bored again’s practice of googling up an article that almost says what he wants it to say is about as annoying as his brazenly false claims.

    Bored again is just filled with false propaganda about US tax rates and clearly does not have a freakin’ clue about reality. Probably another 1040EZ filer.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  88. […] know I sound like a broken record, but there are things that I just don’t understand. The actions of Nancy Pelosi in the House and now Max Baccus in the Senate defy logical […]

    Arrested Development – Obama Style : The Pink Flamingo (342d4e)


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