Matthew Holt

Morons like us

I still read the articles every day that Google and the rest of my searches spit into my inbox. But as the sausage gets made I despair for the country. Not so long ago the NY Times met the Rush Limbaugh fan who decries the government takeover of health care, even though his wife ran up $68,000 in care while she had breast cancer and no insurance. Somehow because his local hospital let him off the charges, he thinks that the system was OK, and drove for an hour to shout at a Democrat who wanted to change it! (Of course the taxpayer absorbed the costs).

Yesterday NPR reported about the Sacramento man who loves his current health insurance. He’s had six or seven surgeries in the past five years—in other words he would be completely uninsurable if he lost his job (post-COBRA). He even sort of understands that.

“I mean you hear horror stories about people who have insurance and then all the sudden get denied coverage down the line because they may have had a pre-existing condition,” Koenig says. He, too, worries that he’s one step away from being dropped from his plan or losing his job and not being able to afford coverage…..And that’s why Koenig is on board with parts of the big push to change the health care system.

And like about half of other Americans, he’s actually been uninsured.

In the early nineties he was laid off and went without insurance for several months. He says it was an uncertain time and he sympathizes with the millions of Americans who don’t have coverage — or could be dropped at any time

So what does he think?

he says the focus should be on regulating the insurance industry and not a government take-over, which he believes President Obama is pushing for.

Let’s quickly review here.

Obama/Baucus/HR3200 all basically keep employer-based insurance as is with a bit of expansion, keep Medicaid as is with some expansion to suck up a few of the uninsured poor, and change the regulations in the insurance market to prevent (some of) the problems the Sacramento man understands. Oh, and they sort of put in place a backstop public plan (well HR 3200 does anyway) which people could buy into if there wasn’t a private plan they liked.

So does this sound like “regulating the insurance industry” or is it “a government take-over”.

I hesitate to remind the Sacramento man that a government takeover means the communists collectivizing your farm and stealing your pigs, and shipping you off to Siberia. What Obama/Baucus/HR3200 is proposing is minor reform of the insurance market.

And yet, somehow that message cannot get itself into the thick skulls of people who those reforms would actually help.

Livongo’s Post Ad Banner 728*90

27
Leave a Reply

27 Comment threads
0 Thread replies
0 Followers
 
Most reacted comment
Hottest comment thread
19 Comment authors
spikeMD as HELLDeron S.AnnRHal Horvath Recent comment authors
newest oldest most voted
spike
Guest
spike

Of all of the comments about health care coverage one of the many proposals which are being (probably in all of them) is this “DEMAND” that everyone pay for health insurance regardless of personal choice or desire. One of the many examples being used to illustrate this is the everyone has to buy car insurance. WELL, THIS IS NOT THE CASE AT ALL. I DO NOT HAVE TO PURCHASE A CAR AND THEREFORE DO NOT REQUIRE CAR INSURANCE UNLESS I OWN AND OPERATE A CAR. I DO NOT HAVE THE SAME CHOICE WITH REGARDS MY BODY . ( UNLESS THERE… Read more »

MD as HELL
Guest
MD as HELL

Jerry,
I just got back from your blog. Loved the Dangerfield clip. But it shows the problem with healthcare spending; everyone in the clip, with the exception of the lady whom I did not know, is dead. Not that there is anything wrong with that. It just shows you don’t live forever. Hopefully a person’s healthcare debt will not live forever and will not be anyone else’s debt forever either.

Nate
Guest
Nate

Jerry that was your smartest post to date. Keep to the shorter jokes you would only appear half the idiot you are.

MD as HELL
Guest
MD as HELL

Government out of its boundaries is ALWAYS bad.
Morons like you are pimping for the great Obamanation, which will, when it has reached its goals of destruction of Consitutional America, cast you aside with the rest of us. And you won’t have a clue. But you can believe in the change.

Jerry
Guest

Shorter Nate – “The thought of all those brown people having sex makes me nervous.”

Nate
Guest
Nate

You are clueless Phillip, can’t even apply basic math, listen and learn… “There is therefore the debate that do they take more out of the system than they put in.” There is no debate. 99.9% of their income, what they take out, is earned in US wages. From that they send billions out of the country in remittance, this right away means they contribute less then they take in. Further studies have shown illegal immigrants know to claim 5-6 dependents so they have minimal to no withholding shooting a huge whole in your argument 50-60% contribute. It has also been… Read more »

Deron S.
Guest

I can’t wait until that evil insurance industry is reformed. Then Washington can claim victory while we still suffer from a high cost system. Those expanding waistlines and high stress levels can’t possibly have anything to do with our problems. Sounds like fun!

Phillip
Guest
Phillip

Brittancus, I could not read your lame immigrant rant, but let me make a few comments about illegal immigrants and healthcare. There have always been illegal immigrants in the U.S. There was just never a real separation between illegal and legal immigrants in the past. They have always been blamed by those who some how think they have been cheated or are being cheated or are just plain racist or are losers themselves and need someone to blame for their own failures. The Scots, the Irish, the Chinese, and now the hispanics have been the targets. There are many studies… Read more »

AnnR
Guest
AnnR

Geeze – I can’t believe someone who has chewed up so much healthcare would go public with that. He must have something on his employer.
Employers, moreoften small ones, have been known to go through claims and single out people who are running their premiums up. Then they’ll pressure you to go onto your spouse’s plan or maybe seek disability.
I certainly wouldn’t be advertising this. He should ask what the COBRA amount would be if he got laid off. That’s put him in for a coronary for certain!

Hal Horvath
Guest

The “Government Takeover” fear does have one important piece of reality to answer:
http://findingourdream.blogspot.com/2009/08/real-issue-in-nationalizing-our-health.html

Nate
Guest
Nate

“in other words he would be completely uninsurable if he lost his job (post-COBRA).” Getting closer Matt, your only half way dishonest, you once again forgot about HIPAA, you would think as many times as I bust your balls on this you would remember. Then again uninsurable does sound so much worse then, would only be able to purchase expensive insurance. “Obama/Baucus/HR3200 all basically keep employer-based insurance as is with a bit of expansion,” Incorrect million of people will immediately lose their employer insurance the day the law becomes effective. Followed by the elimination of most small self funded plans… Read more »

Brittancus
Guest
Brittancus

Our government panders to the 20 to 30 plus (?) illegal immigrants allowing them free subsidies from taxpayers in the US. California–a Sanctuary State has one of the worst records that currently languish under the immense burden of near bankruptcy, instead of –ATTRACTING–ICE to illegal business operations. Certain legislators in Sacramento, led by Gilbert Cedillo-D has authored a lame brain resolution condemning any interference in immigration enforcement. Congressman Brian Bilbray-R Calif. reminds Sen. Cedillo that this resolution breaks the laws of the Constitution. “He should look up the separation of powers section and this resolution is nothing more than political… Read more »

John Ballard
Guest

Tim, Dave, others… This blog is the gold standard for solid information about health care issues. The blogmaster is open-minded to a fault and if a contributor allows frustration at terminal ignorance to boil over occasionally the reasons are not hard to discover. I have seen civility fail as often as insult over the last year of discussions and extreme name-calling no longer bothers me. If that’s a problem, then do your homework elsewhere. I, for one, am here for the duration. Meantime, all this “government takeover” nonsense is getting on my nerves. Every time I hear a Medicaid or… Read more »

Gary Levin
Guest

These arguments are specious. Anyone wanting to know the real truth needs to read HR 3200…it’s all there..reads like the IRS tax code,,very punitive, legalistic language. Whether any of this stuff will become law in HR 3200 as it stands should be highly doubtful….Our contry not only needs more cortex, but spinal cord….as well.

jd
Guest
jd

Matt, The answer to why so many have such a distorted view is clear: they aren’t given the information they need, and they don’t seek out that information. The right wing media doesn’t describe any of the details of the bills unless they want to whip people up into a righteous frenzy about it. They do not see their job as to inform, but to agitate (and retain viewers/readers/listerners through emotional tactics). The mainstream media hardly ever describes the functional details of the bills, unless it is to report that there is a “problem” with one of the provisions, which… Read more »