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Put Up or Shut Up

tip to Josh


 

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Oh, If Republicans tried to believe the things they said this would work. Democrats need to get in the business of exposing them as the liars they are in elections and not just on the floor.

This is what every Democratic politician should sound like. Fantastic.

This was exquisite.

If anyone wants to tell the Republicans to "put up or shut up" - don't ask them to vote against Medicare, ask them to RELINQUISH THEIR OWN GOVERNMENT PROVIDED HEALTH INSURANCE, and buy the private insurance they claim is soooo much better.

Why hasn't anyone pointed out that the very people who claim government run health insurance is evil, won't give it up for themselves or their families? This whole debate should have been over with one sentence.

exactly. I kept thinking that Weiner would go there. I'm getting ready to go there with my reps.

He's talking about John Dingell at the end, by the way. Had to look that one up...

The flip side of this brilliant needling of the assholes in the GOP is this: Democrats KNOW that there is an overwhelming majority of seniors who go berkerk if medicare were taken away. Anthony Weiner weilds his Medicare club with complete confidence. Yet the Democrats can't/won't embrace the obvious corrollary. If they passed single payer health care without any GOP support, they would have a political club with which they could beat the Republican party bloody for the next 50 years. When you have such an obvious political opportunity right before your eyes and you still pass it up, you get a measure of just how powerful the insurance/healthcare lobby is.

Tim:

I am pleased to see that the debate is evolving, and I think it is fantastic we have finally begun to evaluate the medicare/medicaid program as a basis for "Obamacare".

Why not extend medicare & medicaid to include everyone? As Tim rightly points out, this would be an overwhelmingly popular thing to do, and would yield enough political capital to run a populist regime for another decade at least.

So why not extend medicare & medicaid to everyone? Because medicare and medicaid are going broke.

http://moneywatch.bnet.com/saving-money/blog/devil-details/could-you-die-faster-medicares-broke/290/

http://www.ssa.gov/OACT/TRSUM/index.html

Now, let me make 3 points and be on my way.

  1. I am not a shill for, nor do I have any vested interests with the Insurance lobby. They may own the GOP, but that alone does not explain all opposition to healthcare reform.

  2. By presenting the financial reality of medicare/medicaid, I do not mean to say "Obamacare is impossible", rather, I am raising the major issue that single-payer advocates seem to avoid: cost.

  3. Once we address the costs of the systems, we must address the sources for financing them. If this cannot be done with deficit spending, any solution is unsustainable.

No more talking points or ideological ranting- lets look at some cold hard data and find consensus.

^If this cannot be done WITHOUT deficit spending, any solution is unsustainable.

(typo)

I don't need to even read your link, Zap. Medicare/medicaid are "going broke" only because revenues committed to these programs have been held constant for while the expenses they are meant to meet have skyrocketed. The fraction of my paycheck (including my employer's contribution) devoted to OAHI has remained the same for fifteen years, while the fraction of my paycheck devoted to privately administered health care has nearly tripled over the same period. So, of course they are "going broke" - how could it be otherwise under these circumstances?

From just the financial point of view, the thing to focus on how efficiently do the publicly administered systems obtain health care vs. the private systems? Medicare wins hands down – Weiner knew that when he started in on this.

I have no illusions that single-payer health care will be "free" – I am simply convinced that I'd rather my (and my employer) were paying into a single-payer government administered plan than the what I have now. (Along the same lines as Rex Devious, did you notice any Republican stitheads standing up and dramatically responding that they wanted to swap their publically administered plans for private insurance? Nope - FOX news would have replayed that little clip forever.) I think I'll get care that is as good or better that I get now, and I am much less likely to have some prick telling me I'm not covered.

Tim:

The fraction of my paycheck (including my employer's contribution) devoted to OAHI has remained the same for fifteen years, while the fraction of my paycheck devoted to privately administered health care has nearly tripled over the same period. So, of course they are "going broke" - how could it be otherwise under these circumstances?

Sure, but if we adjust your withholdings to reflect the true cost of medicare/aid obligations, how would that compare to what you are now paying for the private care?

I would wager it would still be cheaper, but not as cheap as you might expect.

I concede healthcare. I understand the system is going to change. I'm all for it. I'll even concede a public system could be run more efficiently. But what will this really cost? And how are we going to pay?

Medicare/medicaid are faced with some serious issues, and it strikes me as extremely disingenuous for politicians like Weiner to trumpet the achievements of medicare without addressing any of these associated problems.

"The financial condition of the Social Security and Medicare programs remains challenging. Projected long run program costs are not sustainable under current program parameters. Social Security's annual surpluses of tax income over expenditures are expected to fall sharply this year and to stay about constant in 2010 because of the economic recession, and to rise only briefly before declining and turning to cash flow deficits beginning in 2016 that grow as the baby boom generation retires."

This is not an editorial from some right-wing conspiracy theory, this is straight from the beast itself:

http://www.ssa.gov/OACT/TRSUM/index.html

I understand we can solve the problem by assigning more money to medicare/medicaid. But what no one has told me yet is WHERE this money is coming from.

"I understand we can solve the problem by assigning more money to medicare/medicaid. But what no one has told me yet is WHERE this money is coming from."

I was under the impression that funding for the public option would come from people dropping their private healthcare and instead paying for the public option. So individuals and employers will put money into the public option instead of a private option. Since there is no motive profit, it should be cheaper to run.

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