Health Reform: Critics of the Republican´s ObamaCare replacement plan — and many moderate Republicans as well — complain that it will result in millions losing insurance. What nobody asks is whether we have too much insurance today. Insurance, after all, is supposed to make health care more affordable. But what if it´s making it less so? University of Michigan economist Mark Perry recently compared inflation rates for health care with price increases for cosmetic surgery. What he discovered was illuminating. From 1998 to 2016, the overall inflation rate was 47.2%. But for medical care services, prices went up 100%. And for hospital services,
Major medical and hospitalization insurance have given way to "healthcare" - no longer sharing risk but sharing costs. The healthcare industry makes billions off "Preventive" procedures that prevent nothing and are rolled into the premiums you pay. Healthcare reform keeps this shared costs model, expanding coverage into pre-existing conditions and kids under 26.
I’m sick of listening to the bellyaching. You want to have emergency medical care available immediately when you are taken to the hospital with chest pains, including a CT scanner that cost a couple million bucks just sitting at the hospital waiting for you to need it? And you want health insurance that will cover most of the cost of that care so that you don’t have to sell your house and drain every penny of your savings to pay for it? Yes? Then it’s going to cost you.
There’s no such thing as a free lunch, or a free CT scan or hospital stay or doctor’s care or cancer treatment or health insurance. What you pay for in all of it is technology and medications that now will keep you alive for decades with medical conditions that 50 years ago would have killed you on the spot. Don’t want all that? Then don’t call the ambulance in the first place, because most of the complaints I hear are just people wanting something for nothing.
Know several persons who have experienced economic hardships so extreme that health insurance was dropped. When expensive medical procedures such as MRI, CT scans, etc were required the Doctors and medical facilities significantly dropped their prices to accommodate payment in cash up front. Some of the price reduction was out of the goodness of their heart; the rest was due to reduced payment collection costs. Payment in full up front versus haggling with an insurance company for months before being paid. Government and Insurance are driving up prices. (Persons in this situation that I personally know usually experienced a price decrease of 1/3)
IBD is quite right. Nobody seems to care anymore about how and why costs have soared. And nobody seems to care about containing those costs, concerning themselves only with how to pay for them.
I worked in the medical field during the 70´s. Routine health care was eminently affordable and most people did not carry insurance that covered routine care. So what happened?
The biggest factor, I think, was the huge influx of taxpayer money into the medical marketplace through the emerging Medicare and Medicaid programs. As more and more people were added to those rolls, costs started to soar.
We´ve seen it in housing, we´ve seen it in higher education and we´ve seen it in health care. When government enters the marketplace, cost containment goes out the window as there´s always a way to tap Uncle Sam for more money, more money, more money. When are we ever going to learn this lesson?
One factor in increased hospital/doctor fees is their advertising costs. It´s only been in the past twenty or thirty years that they have been advertising their services. Before then, advertising by doctors and hospitals (and, I might add, lawyers) was considered unethical.
Foreign Aid: Something wonderful is happening at the United Nations, and her name is Nikki — as in former South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley. For the first time in years, the U.S.´ new ambassador to the U.N. is an unapologetic champion of her own country´s interests within the global body. Reform winds are blowing. Haley, like John Bolton (Bush II administration) and Jeanne Kirkpatrick (Reagan) before her, is showing the world that she´s not content to be a bland, politically correct American figurehead at the U.N. She´s making a big difference. Of course, we knew she would be a good pick from
Health Reform: One of the more depressing aspects of the failed ObamaCare replacement bill was that it exposed how many Republicans have become ardent defenders of Medicaid — a "poverty" program that is slowly taking over health care. There are few federal programs as poorly designed as Medicaid. Its open-ended funding mechanism — where the federal government matches spending by the states — encourages waste. Since 2000, Medicaid spending climbed 172%, and the Government Accountability Office has listed Medicaid as a "high risk" for fraud and abuse. At the same time, Medicaid´s low reimbursement rates — it pays doctors about half what
Share to Facebook 32.9KShare to Twitter Share to Google+ Autoplay: On | Off Former Vice President Joe Biden late Friday night voiced regret about his decision not to run for president, predicting if he had secured the Democratic nomination he could have won against Donald Trump. "I had planned on running for president and although it would have been a very difficult primary, I think I could have won," he said. "I don´t know, maybe not. But I thought I could have won." "I had a lot of data and I was fairly confident that if I were the Democratic Party´s nominee, I had a better
Economics: For those not in the know, this weekend marks the gala 60th anniversary of the formation of what eventually became the European Union. Celebrate while you can, because it might not make it to 61. The European Union will "celebrate" its 60th birthday officially on Saturday in a sad effort to make itself look still relevant. We don´t mean to be snide, but it has precious little to celebrate. Starting small, the 1957 Treaty of Rome created what was then called the European Economic Community from just six countries. It should have stayed small. From those modest beginnings, it has turned into
Fake News: If you wonder why so many of the juiciest anti-Trump stories turn out to be frauds these days, you need a lesson in economics. The insatiable demand for tales that embarrass the president is creating its own supply. Case in point is the most recent KittenFeed story. On Tuesday, the New York Observer ran an exclusive piece with the headline: "Trump Sics Lawyers on Teen for Making Silly Site Where Kittens Punch Him." It claimed that a 17-year-old girl in San Francisco had received two cease-and-desist letters from the Trump Organization. A multitude of other news sites, bloggers and social
We know there are compelling arguments for a complete repeal of Obamacare, as senators such as Rand Paul have urged. We also know that President Trump is right to urge Congress to take half a loaf on reform for now, in what´s called Obamacare Lite, rather than nothing at all. But has anyone taken a look at the activities of the left, which favors a full preservation of the nightmarish Obamacare status quo? The ‘Next 48 hours will be all hands on deck,’ bellowed House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, describing the left´s cavalcade of protests, phone banking, ads and this being the
MOSCOW — Russian interference in the American elections last year was downright subtle compared to what we’ve seen this week in the run-up to French presidential elections. The two-round vote on April 23 and May 7 could change politics, defense, and the economy in Europe more radically—and more in Russia’s favor—even than the chaos spawned by Donald Trump’s iffy triumph in the United States. And on Friday, Putin endorsed his candidate: far-right-wing, anti-European-Union, anti-NATO, anti-immigrant, anti-American, pro-Trump candidate Marine Le Pen. Of course, Putin said, “We don´t want to influence in any way the events going on [in France],” but his government received
House Republicans scrapped a vote on their health care replacement plan on Friday after defections from both the right and center that made it clear the bill would not pass. President Trump tried to spin the setback as a defeat for Democrats who wouldn´t cross the aisle to support the bill — despite not making any entreaties to the minority party. Trump — who is the first president to enter office without any political or legislative experience — did seem to admit there was a bit of a learning curve when it came to such a complex issue. "This was an interesting
Democrats took a victory lap Friday after President Donald Trump requested that House Speaker Paul Ryan pull the Republican bill to replace the Affordable Care Act, effectively ending the party´s quest to replace what is known as "Obamacare." The GOP-backed bill, the American Health Care Act, did not have enough Republican votes to pass the House. An agreement could not be met between Trump and House leadership, and moderate and more conservative representatives on what the bill should contain. In a statement shortly after the bill was pulled, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer said, "So much for the ´Art of the Deal,´
Health Reform: Friday´s decision to pull the American Health Care Act from the House floor because it lacked enough votes to pass was a culmination of months of bad decisions, poor planning, and terrible messaging by the GOP leadership in the House. This failure undermines not only the party´s credibility, but President Trump´s purported ability to "make great deals." Worse, it emboldens the left-wing "resistance." Back in early December, we warned in this space that the Republican´s ObamaCare repeal effort was "off to a bad start." That was when House Speaker Paul Ryan was talking up a "repeal and delay" plan that
One of the strangest turns in the story of Russia and the Trump campaign has been the recent outrage from Democrats over politicization of the investigation. This all centers on Chairman Devin Nunes, the Republican who is leading the House Intelligence Committee´s investigation. He was an adviser to the Trump presidential transition. The White House asked him last month to talk to a reporter to rebut news stories that alleged Trump associates had many contacts with Russian intelligence officers. On Wednesday, Nunes briefed the president about new information he had regarding dozens of widely disseminated intelligence reports on the Trump transition.
Rep. Louis Gohmert´s calls for a new investigation on the Russian ties of John Podesta may just shed light on why the former Hillary Clinton campaign chairman´s emails were hacked at all. Far from being an effort to take down Clinton, it looks as though Podesta may have been a pawn in a Kremlin power struggle. As there´s little political hay to be made from that, it´s not the most convenient "narrative" for Podesta. To hear Podesta and the rest of the Democrats tell it, Russians hacked the U.S. election and released his emails via Wikileaks because they were in cahoots
Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) on Monday stepped up his criticism of House Intelligence Chairman Devin Nunes, calling on House Speaker Paul Ryan to replace him. "Without further ado, Speaker Ryan should replace Chairman Nunes," the Senate minority leader said from the floor. "If Speaker Ryan wants the House to have a credible investigation, he needs to replace Chairman Nunes." Nunes caused an uproar last week when he told the press that he had seen intelligence showing that members of President Trump´s transition team had been caught up in surveillance operations — without first discussing the information with fellow committee members. He later
With the words "credibility questioned" prominent on the screen, Scott Pelley once again is doing what network evening-news anchors generally don´t do: abandoning careful neutrality in favor of pointed truth-telling. He is talking Thursday night about President Trump. And here are some of the words he is using: "his boasting and tendency to believe conspiracy theories." It´s nothing new. Pelley, of CBS Evening News, has set himself apart — especially in recent weeks — with a spate of such assessments, night after night. Perhaps the most notable one, on Feb. 7, went like this: "It has been a busy day
Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., caused a scene at a Manhattan restaurant when he began yelling at a wealthy and well-connected Donald Trump supporter that the POTUS is “a liar.” Schumer, the top Senate Democrat, lost his cool on Sunday night at Upper East Side restaurant Sette Mezzo, according to witnesses. He was dining with friends when he encountered Joseph A. Califano Jr. — the former U.S. secretary of health, education and welfare under President Jimmy Carter and domestic policy adviser to President Lyndon B. Johnson — and his wife, Hilary, who were having a quiet dinner. Onlookers said Schumer was incensed that Hilary
Attorney General Jeff Sessions said Monday he’ll begin punishing sanctuary cities, withholding potentially billions of dollars in federal money — and even clawing back funds that had been doled out in the past. Speaking at the White House, Mr. Sessions said his department is preparing to dole out more than $4 billion in funds this year, but will try prevent any of it from going to sanctuaries. “Countless Americans would be alive today … if these policies of sanctuary cities were ended,” Mr. Sessions said. He said he’s carrying out a policy laid out by the Obama administration last year,
Barack Obama’s former press secretary is now a political analyst for NBC News and MSNBC, the network announced Monday. “Josh recently completed a ten-year run with President Obama, most recently serving as White House Press Secretary from 2014-2017,” NBC New President Noah Oppenheim and MSNBC President Phil Griffin said in a joint statement. “A native of Kansas City, Josh graduated from Rice University with a degree in political science and policy studies. With his wealth of experience and insight, Josh will be a great addition to our roster of contributors and will be an asset for our two networks as
Mental genius Chelsea Clinton made a complete a** of herself once again this past weekend. Someone really needs to keep her away from the computers without supervision. Via Newsbusters— The Republican Party of Palm Beach County put President Lincoln in a #MAGA hat this year for its Lincoln Day Dinner. (Snip) An alarmed Chelsea Clinton, a graduate of Oxford University, asked her followers if the image was photoshopped! What a dunce. The responses to Chelsea’s tweets were EPIC! “No, this is the exact hat Lincoln was wearing when he signed the Emancipation Proclamation. People forget that.” “Nope, Lincoln was wearing that exact hat at the Theater.” “Nope,
Broken Arrow, Oklahoma - Three teenagers were killed Monday, shot by a man as they were breaking into his home. Officers say it happened at a home near 91st and Clearview Drive in Wagoner County. The Wagoner County Sheriff´s Office said the homeowner and his adult son were in the home when three males wearing masks and gloves tried to break in at about 12:30 p.m. The homeowner´s son shot the intruders with a rifle, deputies said, killing all three. (Snip) Deputies said the resident armed himself with an AR-15 rifle and walked toward the back door where he encountered
New market data has somehow managed to make Whole Foods’ beleaguered lot look even worse. On top of reports last week that rival Albertsons was sniffing around Sprouts Farmers Market, an upstart organic grocer and wellness store whose prices are about 19 percent cheaper on average than Whole Foods, there are now some new numbers suggesting the high-end grocery chain is also still hemorrhaging shoppers. Foot traffic has dipped once again, Barclays analysts note, straight-up describing the magnitude this time as “staggering.” Technically, it’s 3 percent, which can make “staggering” seem a little far-fetched — until you consider it translates
Less than a week after the failed attempt to repeal Obamacare, President Trump will sign an executive order that could spell the end of Obama-era environmental policy. The order will curb the enforcement of a number of climate regulations, in an effort, the Trump administration says, to prioritize American jobs above addressing climate change. According to Mark Lynas, a British author, journalist and environmental activist who focuses on climate change, the order "is intended to make coal competitive again in the US economy, by refossilizing the US power sector and demonstrably increasing carbon emissions." "This is politically symbolic, as it will show that
As they investigate the forces behind the party’s stunning losses in November, Democrats are coming to a troubling conclusion. The party didn’t just lose among rural white voters on Election Day, it may have failed to capture them in its pre-election polling as well. Many pollsters and strategists believe that rural white voters, particularly those without college degrees, eluded the party’s polling altogether — and their absence from poll results may have been both a cause and a symptom of Donald Trump’s upset victory over Hillary Clinton in several states. Determining what exactly happened is one of the most pressing problems facing
On the same day that the House of Representatives canceled its vote on Ryancare, Alabama Rep. Mo Brooks filed a simple one-line bill to repeal Obama’s signature health care law. The Huntsville Republican titled the bill ‘Obamacare Repeal Act.” It is short and to the point, AI.com reported. “Effective as of Dec. 31, 2017, the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act is repealed, and the provisions of law amended or repealed by such Act are restored or revived as if such Act had not been enacted,” the bill reads. Brooks, a member of the House Freedom Caucus, told constituents last week that he
Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch’s path to 60 votes is rapidly closing — setting the stage for a nuclear showdown in the Senate as soon as next week. Senior Democratic sources are now increasingly confident that Gorsuch can’t clear a filibuster, saying his ceiling is likely mid- to upper-50s on the key procedural vote. That would mark the first successful filibuster of a Supreme Court nominee since Abe Fortas for chief justice in the 1960s. In the latest ominous sign for the federal judge from Colorado, Sen. Bill Nelson (D-Fla.) said Monday he’ll oppose Gorsuch on the cloture vote, which is expected