Patterico's Pontifications

11/14/2010

Update on Krugman: I Didn’t Really Mean Death Panels, I Meant the Government Should Refuse Treatment

Filed under: General — Aaron Worthing @ 5:12 pm



[Guest post by Aaron Worthing; if you have tips, please send them here.]

Well, that is a paraphrase of what he said in his blog, responding to the controversy over his “death panels” comment earlier today.  And here’s the fuller quote so you can judge for yourself:

So, what I said is that the eventual resolution of the deficit problem both will and should rely on “death panels and sales taxes”. What I meant is that

(a) health care costs will have to be controlled, which will surely require having Medicare and Medicaid decide what they’re willing to pay for — not really death panels, of course, but consideration of medical effectiveness and, at some point, how much we’re willing to spend for extreme care

(b) we’ll need more revenue — several percent of GDP — which might most plausibly come from a value-added tax

Oh, and by the way, in the past he has said that death panels will save money.

So are we supposed to really think this was a slip of the tongue?  Would it really have been so hard to say it the way he describes his intentions as being?

Well, you can make up your own mind, but I think he meant what he said and said what he meant.  He wants to decide that sometimes it is better to let someone die than to spend more government money.  And I will note for the record, his “clarification” didn’t actually contradict that impression.  I mean how hard would that have been?  All he would have had to say was “still, I feel that no cost should be spared when a person’s life is on the line.”  But he didn’t say that, now did he?

And, by the way, for your own reference, here is a link to Palin’s facebook page where she first popularized that phrase.  You have to give it to her: she has rocked that facebook.

And also for your reference “Dr. Drew” has very similar thoughts.

[Posted and authored by Aaron Worthing.]

67 Responses to “Update on Krugman: I Didn’t Really Mean Death Panels, I Meant the Government Should Refuse Treatment”

  1. In all his years of pundity Krugman hasn’t learned that you can’t use sarcasm on these people. Truly the mark of an east coast elitist.

    imdw (bae360)

  2. At least he isn’t a troll who posts personal information about website hosts and then lies about it. Repeatedly.

    Getting to your point, Mr. Worthing. Dr. Krugman means cessation of treatment for we but not for he…in a manner of speaking.

    People deciding who gets treatment and who does not—-meaning that a group will decide who will die from lack of treatment. “Death Panel” is so harsh.

    We’ll just call it “effectiveness.”

    Eric Blair (c8876d)

  3. Aaron Worthing is a socialist?

    /John Stanford

    Patterico (c218bd)

  4. Why not just call it an insurance company?

    imdw (bae360)

  5. Sort of like calling you a troll?

    Eric Blair (c8876d)

  6. Oh, that wasn’t me. Someone was spoofing my anonymizer and claiming to be me.

    Eric Blair (c8876d)

  7. Why not just call it an insurance company?

    Medicare and Medicaid both have higher instances of refusal to pay for treatment than private insurance.

    The Departed (d027b8)

  8. “Medicare and Medicaid both have higher instances of refusal to pay for treatment than private insurance.”

    As would be expected, people in it generally can’t be insured elsewhere.

    imdw (e6d25a)

  9. imdw

    i read zero sarcasm in his tone. Indeed, he himself hasn’t said he was “just” being sarcastic. And i would add that it would then be completely non-responsive to the question being asked.

    Aaron Worthing (b8e056)

  10. As would be expected, people in it generally can’t be insured elsewhere.

    So that makes it perfectly ok for the Govt to deny treatment.

    Swing and a miss…

    The Departed (d027b8)

  11. btw, imdw, wouldn’t it have been great to have this debate BEFORE THEY PASSED THAT MONSTROSITY OF A LAW?!

    Just a thought.

    Aaron Worthing (b8e056)

  12. “So that makes it perfectly ok for the Govt to deny treatment.”

    Seeing as how they won’t be getting it elsewhere…

    imdw (d8a0c2)

  13. Declining treatment due to excessive costs (Krugman, WBTW advised Enron) v. Death Panels (Palin):
    A distinction without a difference.

    AD-RtR/OS! (8b6ecc)

  14. “btw, imdw, wouldn’t it have been great to have this debate BEFORE THEY PASSED THAT MONSTROSITY OF A LAW?!”

    It was there if you were just paying attention.

    imdw (d8a0c2)

  15. imdw, its very cute that you are trying to dress up Krugman’s idiocy with the illusion that it was intentional.

    But no one is convinced.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  16. “…consideration of medical effectiveness and…how much we’re willing to spend for extreme care”

    “How much we’re willing to spend”? How clever–he makes it sound like “we” will have free will to make those calls. How very market-like. And if you believe that, then…well, on second thought maybe we will believe it. After all, lots of people from Peggy Noonan on down were convinced Obama was whip-smart (or something).

    Jeff S. (1fc995)

  17. This is why the derision of Palin’s comments was always so dishonest.

    The original version of health care reform included “effectiveness” reveiws of medical procedures at different stages of life — how much cost was incurred in return for an extension of life for the patient, and how long was that extension. The combination of high cost and short life extension would lead to Medicare not covering such a procedure.

    This got reduced to the caricature of “death panels” with the suggestion that this analysis would happen on a case-by-case basis, so “Grandma” might be subjected to a death panel when hospitalized.

    That was not the case, and not the suggestion. But medical procedures and practices themselves would have been subjected to review “panels”, and if those panels determined that certain life-extending procedures were not “worth” the cost, then Medicare would not cover them, the patient who could not independently afford them would not get them, and that would be that.

    Krugman is just simply acknowledging what has always been true about health “reform”, and exposing the disengenousness of the attacks on Palin’s comments.

    shipwreckedcrew (436eab)

  18. “imdw, its very cute that you are trying to dress up Krugman’s idiocy with the illusion that it was intentional.”

    Oh yes very. You see what he says earlier about the commission and the ‘death panels people.’

    imdw (4fe3dc)

  19. Death AND taxes! What a combo!

    When taxes pay for your healthcare, the pols (and taxpayers) start to feel they are paying for it with money that is rightfully theirs. They will not spend their money to take care of you. It’s no wonder Krugman thinks there is a point where no more (of his) money should be spent keeping you alive.

    Doctor Hook (ffd877)

  20. And Pauliebabe is supposed to be smart.

    glenn (0af9f1)

  21. Government should resist treatment equals Death Panels.

    At least under our current system, I can choose my Death Panel and I have been very happy with it and feel it will give me the health care I need as I head into retirement.

    Obamacare? No, I don’t feel it will take care of me.

    Arizona Bob (e8af2b)

  22. It’s not really a death panel, just wise people appointed by the wonderful, all-knowing government determining “Soylent Green” style that you aren’t worth caring for any more. Got it, Paul. Thanks for the clarification.

    Bugg (996c34)

  23. ___________________________________________

    Why not just call it an insurance company?

    No worse than the friggin’ IRS sticking its big fat-ass nose into the who, what, when, where and why of my health insurance.

    The only group that will truly make out like bandits under Obamacare are all the pencil-pushing drones employed by the IRS. Of course, their own healthcare and pension plans — paid by the sucker taxpayers of America — will be marvelous and wonderful.

    Mark (411533)

  24. How deep is Sarah Palin in these guys heads?

    eric (3a2b67)

  25. SO ….

    Let us go out of our way and use Government intervention to stop smoking and avoid cardio-vascular disease.

    Let us go out of our way and use Government intervention to ban salt and reduce heart attacks.

    Let us go out of our way and use Government intervention to promote condemn usage to reduce STD.

    Let us go out of our way and use Government intervention to enforce seat belt lawyers to reduce auto fatalities.

    Let us go out of our way and use Government intervention to put in silly FDA requirements to reduce potentially lethal (but maybe helpful) drugs.

    Let us go out of our way and use Government intervention to stop narcotics usage.

    All in an effort to keep us healthy and safe …

    .
    .
    .
    .
    .
    .

    so that way when we get old, the Government can pull the plug.

    Dear sweet Jesus, be consistent.

    Torquemada/javert/aka (a8a9b2)

  26. I can choose my Death Panel

    Not all of us can. What this boils down to is that currently, we have death panels staffed by insurance bureaucrats (with, via Medicare, a hefty does of governmental input), and many of us have no way of choosing which group of bureaucrats (that is, which insurance company) decides for our own individual case. Under Obamacare we will have death panels staffed by government bureaucrats. What we want is for everyone to be in Arizona Bob’s situation, and able to choose their own death panels–meaning of course, their own insurance. What’s needed is two things–less government interference and much more transparency and availability of options, so the health insurance industry becomes truly competitive and the average person does not need to depend on his employer for health insurance–and at the same time make sure that the average person can in fact afford good medical care. I’ve mentioned before that I have a chronic illness. The medicines I take to keep it under control cost, according to full retail, about $800 a month–$9600. My insurance absorbs most of that, but not all of it. And when they fail, as they do from time to time, I’m always facing the prospect of being thrown in the hospital for several days and possibly undergoing an operation (or more likely, a series of operations). Plus the follow on results of losing a significant portion of my GI tract. In other words, if I didn’t have insurance I’d be in constant peril of going bankrupt (a flare up can occur almost literally overnight); yet an insurer would be crazy to take me on as an individual customer because of how much I’m guaranteed to cost (did I mention the mandatory colonoscopy every other year, with appropriate bills to pay?)

    So how do you get to a market solution that still makes sure I can get insurance instead of inevitably going bankrupt?

    kishnevi (07cf78)

  27. “I can choose my Death Panel”

    You get all the death panel you can afford.

    imdw (53b665)

  28. Of course, anyone who has sense understand the whole “how many angels can dance on a head of a pin” argument of Krugman.

    Everyone knew from the start that the whole health-care reform initiative of the liberals was nothing more than a mechanism to take control of lives.

    Every left-wing horror story from global warming to vaccines is nothing more than an attempt to convince people that they are right.

    All you have to do is to listen to Krugman, Bill Maher, Ted Rall, Keith Olbermann, Rachel Maddow, Ed Shulz, Bill Press, Dana Milbank, or Kos, et al. They have no real interest in any kind of debate. If you disagree with them, the convenient solution is oppression and lacking the success of that, death.

    That’s not because they understand the ultimate solution of what they desire, it’s because everyone should shut up until they find that solution.

    The irony, of course, is that the final solution does not include them.

    No real utopia tolerates dissent. Their idea of a utopia would only foster dissent.

    How about we take what we have and try to make it better without the consent or constant intrusion of a government that long ago said “shut up, we know what is right?”

    Because, frankly, that attitude hasn’t really well.

    Ag80 (827a00)

  29. provided a solution. The left finger seems to be a Dr. Strangelove.

    Ag80 (827a00)

  30. “I didn’t mean death panels, per se, but I’ll go ahead and tell you exactly what a death panel is, and explain why they are desirable.”

    John S (75361e)

  31. The problem with the premise of these posts is that they are trying to hold up one group of people/solution to a problem as being somehow morally blank without acknowledging the moral blankness of the group of people/solution to a problem forming the status quo.

    “Death panels” is one of those phrases like “fair and balanced” that in the end is just a marketing ploy and doesn’t really mean anything real because the amoral situation that the phrase is supposed to be exposing is no different than the amoral situation that already exists.

    Some people won’t get procedures based on the cost/benefit ratio of the procedure vs Some people won’t get a procedure/insurance/will get dumped from insurance based on the cost/benfit ratio of the procedure/their existing conditions

    Government pen pushers whos political bosses will always be hassling them to cut costs will decide which procedures do or don’t make the cut vs Corporate pen pushers whos bosses will always be hassling them to cut costs will decide which procedures are and aren’t covered.

    etc. etc. etc.

    The criticism of the opponents of Obamacare because of their death panel blah blah wasn’t really over it’s “accuracy”, it was because Obamacare proponents weren’t interested in having their morality or humanity questioned by another group of people with no morally or humanely valid alternative.

    EdWood (027322)

  32. we’ll need more revenue

    Because a leftist government can never have enough revenue…

    Blacque Jacques Shellacque (609d83)

  33. “because the amoral situation that the phrase is supposed to be exposing is no different than the amoral situation that already exists”

    EdWood – Except a negative insurance decision provides many layers for appeal. Who do you appeal to when the government is making the call?

    daleyrocks (940075)

  34. Who do you appeal to when the government is making the call?

    Or when the FDA doesn’t approve an expensive but lifesaving treatment.

    It goes without saying that any scarce thing, such as doctors, will be rationed somehow. It was a myth that Obamacare made the math different on this. What has changed is the intrusion and power of the government.

    Dustin (b54cdc)

  35. “Who do you appeal to when the government is making the call?”

    You go to the courts, and the Gov.lawyers will probably do what Corporate lawyers do, stall and wait for you to die or run out of money.

    “Or when the FDA doesn’t approve an expensive but lifesaving treatment”

    If the FDA didn’t approve it then you can’t get it in this country outside of a clinical trial anyway…. but I know what you are saying…the maybe-will-come-to-exist FDA benefit to cost ratio pencil pushers

    Yep. Then you are thrown back onto the old system. Sucks if you are too poor be able to afford the treatment, but under the old system you were too poor to afford even the non-expensive life saving treatments.

    Obamacare will be an improvement for poor people if the mandatory rates aren’t ridiculous, it remains to be seen how it pans out for the rest of us. I hope you guys are all wrong and it’s an improvement even tho I suspect you are right. I believe in the precautionary principle of bureaucracy too.

    EdWood (027322)

  36. “Obamacare will be an improvement for poor people if the mandatory rates aren’t ridiculous,”

    This is a legitimate point, even though I disagree with it.

    When I was in my 20s, I didn’t go to any doctor aside from the one the Army made me go to before I started college. I spent many years without seeing a doctor at all. I had a few health issues that I resolved on my own, and a few I didn’t.

    If I was paying for health insurance, by force of some penalty, I would have seen doctors many times. Obamacare is not increasing the number of doctors, but it is increasing demand dramatically. It is unclear to me how this will work out. I’ve heard grumblings online that doctors have a negative career outlook, but I write this off as politics static for the most part. What if that’s right, though?

    The market is being interfered with heavily and this will cause problems. Furthermore, young men will be losing. They need healthcare, but relatively less.

    I share your hope that it all works well. I do not want Obama to fail in this case, even though I’m pretty sure it’s going to fail hard.

    Dustin (b54cdc)

  37. There were plenty of people who knew that something had to be done about health care. And if you cared to look, there were quite a few writing about solutions. Whether our governing class would have had the sense God gave a turkey to actually put some of that into place, I don’t know. But there were ideas floating around.

    Once the private insurance is destroyed and Obamacare is THE option (because it’s not going to be turned back), it should be extended to forced on all public sector and union employees included elected officials, so they can experience ‘not death panels’.

    sookie (60809e)

  38. “EdWood – Except a negative insurance decision provides many layers for appeal. Who do you appeal to when the government is making the call?”

    Don’t people have like social security appeals,and other things like that?

    “There were plenty of people who knew that something had to be done about health care. And if you cared to look, there were quite a few writing about solutions. ”

    Some of them were republicans. And some even proposed basically what the democrats just passed.

    imdw (a863d5)

  39. And thusly, this explains why economists use language the way they do – they skipped all that Shakespeare English stuff in college. Ah, a Rose by another name…

    cedarhill (174097)

  40. So, in Krugman’s estimation, the federal government’s “consideration of medical effectiveness” is a euphemism for what, exactly? It certainly sounds as though, in practice, a determination will be made by some Washington bureaucrat to determine what types of medical treatment should or shouldn’t be covered by health insurance. Isn’t the question of course of medical treatment and efficacy best left to a doctor and his/her patient?

    Guy Jones (310fdf)

  41. “It certainly sounds as though, in practice, a determination will be made by some Washington bureaucrat to determine what types of medical treatment should or shouldn’t be covered by health insurance.”

    He may be limiting it to medicare.

    “Isn’t the question of course of medical treatment and efficacy best left to a doctor and his/her patient?”

    And the question of who pays for it and how much it costs?

    imdw (7a0ce5)

  42. This issue has iamadimwit working overtime.

    JD (379d24)

  43. Oh, JD, how do you know it actually is imdw? It might be someone spoofing his “handle.”

    That is the funny thing about this nasty little troll. He does something indefensible—probably on the spur of the moment—and won’t be adult enough to apologize for it, even privately. Then, when called on it, he either ignores it or denies it in a remarkably childlike way.

    And this is the thing: if he is so incredibly dishonest in the one case, why should anyone at all believe anything at all he writes?

    Again: posting the blog host’s address and information about the blog host’s wife is what this bit of toilet film did. He was moderated for it, and notice he doesn’t complain about that moderation (personally, I think he should have banned, but hey, it is not my blog). His denial remains that “someone” used his nickname on this blog to do it, not him.

    Patterico doesn’t believe him. Nor does anyone else.

    Just a nasty little troll.

    Eric Blair (ad3ef3)

  44. Torquemada at comment 25 makes the point beautifully.

    Ira (28a423)

  45. “His denial remains that “someone” used his nickname on this blog to do it, not him. ”

    Actually I don’t think that someone did use “imdw.”

    imdw (b1c05d)

  46. Notice how you dance around your own responsibilities. You fool no one.

    Well, take it up with Patterico. You are a nasty piece of work. And I want everyone to know it.

    Of course, you could be a grown up and admit it. But then, that isn’t your style.

    Eric Blair (ad3ef3)

  47. And I agree: “someone” did not use your name.

    You did. And you did something mean spirited and potentially dangerous. Because that is the kind of bad person you are.

    Eric Blair (ad3ef3)

  48. Again folks: look at how he deals with it. Why trust anything that this awful person writes?

    Eric Blair (ad3ef3)

  49. You should talk. And notice again how you don’t deal with your nastiness? Posting a family’s address? Really? And you try to snark at someone else?

    You go beyond your typical rude and misinformed troll trying to stir up trouble. What you are is despicable.

    And I am loving how you are replying to this. You make yourself look worse. The smart move is to do what you did before: run off and take a break. But this is all you have.

    You could (even privately) apologize to Patterico.

    But you aren’t adult enough to own your own mistakes. And I doubt that is true just in this instance.

    Eric Blair (ad3ef3)

  50. May have to step up enforcement.

    If I see imdw deliberately trying to get around the filter, it will likely take longer for those comments that do end up in the filter to be published.

    I can also have Aaron start nuking comments of his that are not pre-approved.

    Patterico (c218bd)

  51. Just deleted a comment of imdw’s that was a pure personal attack on Eric Blair.

    Sure, Eric is personally attacking imdw. But his attacks have a basis: namely, that imdw posted some personal info about me, got some of it wrong, and then lied about it.

    Patterico (c218bd)

  52. Patterico, I will leave this bit of toilet film alone. But going after families is beyond the pale.

    I want everyone who engages him to know that he has been moderated, and is playing games to get around it. Nasty, nasty man.

    If people want to play with him, great. But why should anyone believe a single thing he writes?

    And none of this is new. This has long been imdw’s MO.

    Eric Blair (c8876d)

  53. And thank you, Patterico, for removing something nasty about yours truly.

    Eric Blair (c8876d)

  54. This is where we see the coincidence of two supposedly diametrically opposed political philosophies: both Rand Paul and Paul Krugman agree that that deadly budget cuts must be made. Why? They believe that the government must serve power of moneyed interests.

    Thingumbob (5ae885)

  55. Eric, why do you call him a man ?

    I can choose my Death Panel

    Not all of us can. What this boils down to is that currently, we have death panels staffed by insurance bureaucrats (with, via Medicare, a hefty does of governmental input), and many of us have no way of choosing which group of bureaucrats (that is, which insurance company) decides for our own individual case.

    Insurance companies can be sued and are quite risk averse. I work for a company that provides peer review to about 20 insurance companies. The only time I ever got any blow back for my opinions was an instance when I mentioned that a work comp patient was illiterate in Spanish and English and therefore not a candidate for vocational rehab. I was banned from that company’s work for several months because I had insulted an illegal alien even though it was in the context of trying to get MORE care for him since he wasn’t going to be able to do anything except manual labor. I finally convinced them that I was quoting the treating doctor, which I was, and they relented.

    If you can’t see that as evidence of how risk averse insurance companies are, you cannot be taught.

    On the other hand, Medicare has shown many times that it is immune to complaints.

    Mike K (568408)

  56. Isn’t the question of course of medical treatment and efficacy best left to a doctor and his/her patient?

    Sure. And a lot of insurance companies today don’t leave the decision up to them, but require that it be approved by the insurance company office.

    The argument that it’s different when it’s the government because you have no choice, whereas you have at least some choice when it comes to insurance companies is a valid one – except that it misses the point that many people don’t have a meaningful choice: they take whatever insurance their employer gives them.

    At the end of the day, switching to a government insurance system is a change which by intent is going to benefit those who are poorly off under the current system at the cost of making things worse for those who are well off under the current system. That’s an expected outcome, and that’s what’s at play here.

    The question I don’t see anyone really considering is: is the overall outcome better? Most of the proponents seem to only be looking at the people who will be better off, and trying to generalize from them; most of the opponents seem to only be looking at the people who will be worse off, and trying to generalize from them. There will be some of both.

    aphrael (e0cdc9)

  57. I think we are looking at the big picture, aphrael. Everything the government runs is more expensive because it is not competitive and heavily bureaucratic. To me, the question is whether universal government-run healthcare is worth the added cost and worth the risk it will adversely impact innovation.

    It also offends my idea of the constitutional notions of private property and personal liberty, similar to the way you feel about Obama’s willingness to permanently imprison KSM and other terrorists. Frankly, I share with your concerns.

    DRJ (d43dcd)

  58. DRJ: perhaps i’m being unfair; i’m thinking of people who are rhetorically focusing on “death panels”. They’re looking at the effect on the people whose situation will get worse, not at the effect on the people whose situation will be better (and often show an absolute blindness to the existence of such people).

    Questions about adverse impact on innovation, and the balance between increased cost (due to government bureaucracy, possibly balanced by reduced cost due to fewer insurance companies duplicating each others’ efforts) are big-picture questions.

    aphrael (e0cdc9)

  59. There is a key fact that people either don’t realize, or intentionally gloss over.

    Insurance companies that deny reimbursement of care based on some analysis of the efficacy of a particular treatment is a different question from an insurance company denying reimbursement of treatment based on the appropriateness of a particular patient receiving it.

    Further, in either case, that an insurance company won’t reimburse does not mean that the medical care won’t happen.

    The purpose of a government panel issuing guidelines is to reduce the national expenditure of medical resources in total. The purpose of having a government panel make such rules is to ration the entire nation’s medical resources – by causing the care not to occur at all, not merely an insurance company denying reimbursement.

    SPQR (26be8b)

  60. Why is everybody being so hard on imdw? I plan on consulting with him next time I want to make a 100% profit on a used car or buy some land that is underwater at high tide.

    daleyrocks (940075)

  61. What’s needed is two things–less government interference and much more transparency and availability of options, so the health insurance industry becomes truly competitive and the average person does not need to depend on his employer for health insurance–and at the same time make sure that the average person can in fact afford good medical care.

    Price controls, although they have some side effects.

    Michael Ejercito (249c90)

  62. “They’re looking at the effect on the people whose situation will get worse, not at the effect on the people whose situation will be better (and often show an absolute blindness to the existence of such people)”

    By all means. If one is taking it on the chin they should suck it up and think about all the good their sacrifice is going towards.

    But if that’s your position, how come the politicians that voted this for us aren’t coming along for the ride? It’s almost like they don’t really believe what they’re saying because in their own lives they aren’t making the same sacrifices. If a movie this subject would have the title An Inconvenient Truth, if not already taken.

    East Bay Jay (19f566)

  63. East Bay Jay – I completely agree that Congress should make the same sacrifices it is asking of others.

    aphrael (e0cdc9)

  64. “The purpose of a government panel issuing guidelines is to reduce the national expenditure of medical resources in total. The purpose of having a government panel make such rules is to ration the entire nation’s medical resources – by causing the care not to occur at all, not merely an insurance company denying reimbursement.”

    So you wouldn’t object if this was only about the government insurance program, medicare, making this decision?

    imdw (3fa6b6)

  65. I get the health care I can afford because I have been working my entire life.

    Under Obama, I will get to pay more and get less medical coverage just so some people who don’t work can have insurance.

    I recall when we had that debate earlier this year, something like 87 percent of Americans have health insurance–BECAUSE THEY WORK!

    Spread the wealth baby.

    Arizona Bob (f57a20)

  66. Where do people who are too sick to work get their health care?

    imdw (7b0243)

  67. If you can’t see that as evidence of how risk averse insurance companies are, you cannot be taugh

    I know from my own experience that my health plan has no qualms in denying coverage for a procedure because of effectiveness concerns, etc.

    There’s also the relevant factor that many plans base their coverage on what Medicare covers–IOW, if Medicare covers it, they’ll pay; if Medicare doesn’t, they don’t, even for those who are not on Medicare; and also that workmen’s comp often is a different game entirely. An insurance company being politically correct in agreeing to cover that illegal alien for procedures it covers for most people is not the same thing at all as an insurance company that doesn’t cover a particular procedure or drug for anyone.

    I recall when we had that debate earlier this year, something like 87 percent of Americans have health insurance–BECAUSE THEY WORK!

    You’re underplaying a significant difference between the situation as it now exists and what the situation should be ideally.

    The situation as it now exists: I have health care because I can get it through my employer. If I didn’t get it through my employer I have a serious problem (as explained in one or another comment I made on one of these threads in the last day or so). So I now have health insurance because I work.

    The situation as it would exist ideally: I, and every one else has health insurance they get as individuals or families, and for which they can pay because they work. People who don’t work would have a problem because they don’t have the money to pay for insurance. But you and I, having an income, have health insurance because we work–but our employer has nothing to do with it.

    The problem facing this country I suppose can be summarized as this: how do we get from the situation as it now exists to the situation as it ought to be ideally.

    kishnevi (437df2)


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