Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Explaining Some of the Lies of ObamaCare

 My last blog discussed the new "Blame the Republicans" tact that Liberals and Democrats are trying to use to cover their collective asses regarding the utter failure of the rollout of the ObamaCare )ie the Affordable Care Act or ACA). There is also another tactic that they are using to try and mislead the public regarding the wholesale cancellations of Individual healthcare policies (a tactic that was also used with the supposed religious exemption that VP Joe Biden claimed existed for mandatory abortion coverage of healthcare plans. The way the deception works is you write an exemption or grandfather clause for existing policies into ObamaCare, but you make the exemption or grandfather clause so restricted that no religious institution or policy can qualify. In the case of the religious exemption this is how the exemption is defined.

 Members of certain religious sects. Also sometimes called the "religious conscience" exemption, these religious sects must be recognized by the Social Security Administration as being "conscientiously opposed to accepting any insurance benefits," the IRS explains. As described in Section 1402 of the tax code, these sects must have been in existence since at least December 31, 1950.

 In other words, as long as you are a religious sect (aka the Amish) that has a history of not excepting or using heath insurance, then you are exempt. And this is religious exemption Joe Biden said would exempt Christian institutions and colleges offering healthcare insurance, from the ObamaCare abortion mandate; as usual for a liberal, an obvious and blatant lie trying to deceive the American public.

Candidate/President Obama repeated ad nauseam, "If you like your health care plan, you'll be able to keep your health care plan, period; no one will take it away, no matter what." Here are some of the problem with the grand fathering promise. Obama Administration Knew Millions Could Not Keep Their Health Insurance

"The law states that policies in effect as of March 23, 2010 will be “grandfathered,” meaning consumers can keep those policies even though they don’t meet requirements of the new health care law. But the Department of Health and Human Services then wrote regulations that narrowed that provision, by saying that if any part of a policy was significantly changed since that date -- the deductible, co-pay, or benefits, for example -- the policy would not be grandfathered". (And the Further, President Obama knew this 3 years ago but continued to taught his plan promising the Grand Fathering knowing there was no possibility it would happen. (in other words the grandfather clause only allows plans that were in effect March 23, 2010 as long as they are not subsequently changed, but ObamaCare also requires the insurance companies to change those very policies if they are not mirror images of ObamaCare policies. This however an exception to this was added by Presidnet Obama,so any healthcare plan that is the result of collective bargaining is exempt. Interestingly, this was not enough for the unions that recently (Sept 2013) demanded the White House grant blanket tax payers subsidies for union workers saying the  unions whom argue the ACA will raise their healthcare costs while providing them no benefit. Even though the President has shown his propensity to make changes to ObamaCare on a whim, he reported this was simply not possible, probably because it would make his agenda to transparent for any damage control.
"Buried in Obamacare regulations from July 2010 is an estimate that because of normal turnover in the individual insurance market, “40 to 67 percent” of customers will not be able to keep their policy. And because many policies will have been changed since the key date, “the percentage of individual market policies losing grandfather status in a given year exceeds the 40 to 67 percent range.” That means the administration knew that more than 40 to 67 percent of those in the individual market would not be able to keep their plans, even if they liked them. Yet President Obama, who had promised in 2009, “if you like your health plan, you will be able to keep your health plan,” was still saying in 2012, “If [you] already have health insurance, you will keep your health insurance.” 

So we find out that not only did President Obama know that millions of policies would be cancelled, it was actually written into the law! I guess we have to keep going back to Nancy Pelosi and her statement, "We have to pass the bill so that you can find out what is in it. And the American people just keep finding more to dislike, and the Democrats will keep trying to find a way to blame it on somebody else; and that's just what liberals do.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

It's Time for the ObamaCare Promise Act

Wouldn't t be great if we could hold our politicians to their promises. Candidate and President Obama presented ObamaCare (ACA) with what turned out to be one broken promise after another. Probably the most damaging was if you like your plan you can keep it. The end result is millions of Americans are loosing the plans they liked and are being offered different plans that are much more expensive. While there are many that think there is nothing that can be done but watch the misery to Americans that will  result when ObamaCare implodes, I say "au contraire". What if there is a way to make President Obama keep his promises about ObamaCare. Well there is, it's called the ObamaCare Promise Act.  Americans would be able to keep the plans they liked, they would be able to keep seeing their own doctor, they would not be forced into plans they do not want or can't afford, and those with existing plans would pay $2500 @ year less. I can't imagine the American people not being in favor of such a bill. It would also be interesting to see if the Democrats in the Senate would fight to defeat the ObamaCare Promise Act. So call or write/email your congresspersons and demand the ObamaCare Promise Act.

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

ObamaCare is flawed because of the Republicans. What?

What happens when the Democrats own a failed policy? They blame it on the Republicans anyway. As ObamaCare continues it's death spiral, they new template response. Here is an example from the Santa Cruz Sentinel blog web site.

The ACA is the best plan that Democrats could pass with obstructionist republicans. I wonder why insurance companies have spent so much money sowing misinformation and fear to stop a third payer system if it wouldn't work. Regardless the US has much to learn from other countries about how to provide healthcare.We need to have an alternative to insurance companies who basically make more money by denying care, it's a dumb system.

The President and Democrats have been trying to convince voters that the problem in Washington is the Republicans so called obstructionism. Certainly there can be no doubt that Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid, with the help of President Obama has created the most partisan Congress in modern history. The plan for ObamaCare was simple, the Democrats knew, since they had the Presidency, a  filibuster proof Senate and near 2/3 of the House, there was no need to include the Republicans in any of the Health Care reform debates. But problems arose as a large number of the Democrats wanted the public option, but they knew it was not popular with the voters, and along with other issues compromises had to be made that would later come back to haunt them. So in their arrogance they passed a bill needing 100% agreement without the Republicans; the result stymied the Democratic Party and there lies the blame.Democrats;Their Own Worst Enemy Oh yes and not one aspect of ObamaCare that was promised to the American people by Candidate and President Obama came to fruition; NOT ONE! So no, the Republicans not only didn't obstruct ObamaCare, they weren't even invited to the party. That's right, only one Republican in the House voted for Obamacare and the vote was made long after ObamaCare had already passed. The obstructionist were all Democrats and ObamaCare was so full of pork that it was embarrassing even for the Democrats.

A very common comment about blaming the Republicans was it was the Heritage Foundation that came up with the concept of the individual mandate; this is a straw man on several levels. First the idea of an individual mandate has been floating around for years, certainly decades before the 1980's. Further as the Heritage Foundation says,

First, it was not primarily intended to push people to obtain protection for their own good, but to protect others. Like auto damage liability insurance required in most states, our requirement focused on "catastrophic" costs — so hospitals and taxpayers would not have to foot the bill for the expensive illness or accident of someone who did not buy insurance. (ObamaCare did away with these plans)

Second, we sought to induce people to buy coverage primarily through the carrot of a generous health credit or voucher, financed in part by a fundamental reform of the tax treatment of health coverage, rather than by a stick.

And third, in the legislation we helped craft that ultimately became a preferred alternative to ClintonCare, the "mandate" was actually the loss of certain tax breaks for those not choosing to buy coverage, not a legal requirement. Don't Blame the Heritage Foundation Individual for ObamaCare mandate

Next you have the "I wonder why insurance companies have spent so much money sowing misinformation and fear to stop a third payer system if it wouldn't work." What's so absurd about this argument is it didn't happen. The Public Option was favored by the House Democrats but no support with Democrat Senators. ObamaCare was written by Liz Fowler under the tutoledge of Sen Max Baucus while she was also, the VP for Wellpoint and a top adviser for Obama. ObamaCare was written in collusion with the private heath care industry and big Pharma (Obama vilifying the health care industry is more Obama smoke and lies; all the negotiations were done in secret, which was the height of corruption).

The other half of the blog letter states that the US is way behind the rest of the world because we don't have  National Healthcare. It doesn't matter that every country in the EU is going bankrupt because of raising healthcare. What liberal blogger fails to understand is by definition Single Payer Healthcare is a collectivist policy that addresses only the needs of the majority and is not designed to address the needs of the individual. In the US we are used to medical care being judged on a case by case budget.The best example of this was by our President when Candidate Obama explained national healthcare. This video is so damning many liberal bloggers swear it does not exist; in a way I wish they were right..

The woman, Jan Strum says that her mom, 5 years ago was 99 years old and her doctor said she needed a pace maker. One Medicare specialist said no the mom was too old, but the doctor made an appointment with another specialist so the specialist could personally see mom's joy of life..and the specialist said he would go for it; because of the surgery Jan Strum is now 105 YO and still kicking. The woman then asked how her mom would have fared with ObamaCare saying; Outside the medical criteria prolonging life for someone who is elderly, is there any consideration that can be driven for a certain spirit, a certain joy of living, (or) a quality of life; or is it just a medical cutoff at a certain age?.

Before we get President Obama response, it is worth noting that there is really no medical criteria for prolonging life with Medicare. Jan Strum's own story about her mother shows the decision of whether her mom at 99 years old should get a pacemaker was left up to her doctors. So one wonders is Jan Strum knows that with ObamaCare these decisions would no longer be up to doctors, but by bureaucrats; in this case a panel controlled and dictated by Katherine Sebelius, the Secretary of Health and Human Services.

Okay, back to President Obama's response, (W)ere not going to be able to solve every difficult problem in the end of life care... Maybe your mom would be better off not having the surgery and take the pain pill.  

The President's hubris here is off the scale. First why would any one in his position with a total lack of medical knowledge suggests that the alternative to a pace maker is a pain pill? (it's not) Second Jan Strum is asking about prolonging life of the elderly, while the President is replying with end of life care. This suggests Obama's world view doesn't  include prolonging the life of the elderly, but only end of life decisions that are easier to dictate via a formula and more financially controllable. Then you have Obama personalizing his belief system by actually using Jan Strum's mother as an exemplar of denying life prolonging surgery. He more than implies that the surgery on Jan Strum's mother should never have been  approved and suggests with his healthcare system it wouldn't have happened, even though it's validity had already been shown to be worth the expense.

Saturday, October 12, 2013

National Socialized Healthcare Based on Medicare? Welcome to Hell

While Medicare is generally  looked upon favorably by your average American,  many liberals have voiced the opinion that Medicare should be the model for a National Single Payer; ie socialized medicine.

 In an earlier post I discussed The Real Cost of Medicare this included the fallacy that government administers Medicare is much cheaper than the private sector when it comes to administering their companies (20% vs 3%). The truth is the Federal government farms out the administration of most of Medicare (referred to Medicare Service Contracts) that are usually not counted in the official Administrative costs; Cigna is a major player in Administering Medicare Cigna Government Services Awarded Medicare Contract... The government "stated" administration costs only cover an annul report  assessing the financial health of the program,  while the private sector service contractors are responsible for processing claims and payments, call center services, clinician enrollment, and fraud investigation. So the truth is the Administration of Medicare are at least the same and probably more than private healthcare companies.Then you have to add to the equation that some where between 10 to 20% of Medicare funds are lost to fraud every year; that's $50 billion to $100 billion.

There is also the issue of the doctor fix; this is a $300 billion Medicare shortfall that the Democrats want hidden.   "In 1997, Congress created a new formula called the Sustainable Growth Rate, or SGR. Using Medicare spending in the 1990s as a baseline, the formula factored in overall economic growth to create the annual Medicare budget. The goal was to control Medicare spending by tethering it to the rest of the economy’s growth. And, for a few years, this worked fine; the equation pretty accurately predicted how much Medicare would cost. But, as health care costs outpaced the economy, it has stopped working, leaving the entitlement with a multi-billion-dollar shortfall." Doctor Fix FAQ.

Total Medicare spending is projected to increase from $523 billion in 2010 to $932 billion by 2020. From 2010 to 2030, Medicare enrollment is projected to increase from 47 million to 79 million, and the ratio of workers to enrollees is expected to decrease from 3.7 to 2.4  Medicare Statistics. 

So when one contemplates a Socialized Healthcare based on Medicare, there would be little chance of a private sector administration (a Socialized Healthcare system would be designed to eliminate the private sector), so expect the IRS will be tasked with the administration, something no government agency has any experience doing. All these issues are the result of some of the basic failures of socialism. First, you can not legislate market factors; the mere existence of a mandate rarely results in cost reductions. Second, the larger government grows the more corrupt it becomes. Medicare is now more corrupt than ever and the corruption is growing the more Medicare expands. The  primarily reason is due to doctors over billing for services as they try  to compensate for cut backs in reimbursement rates; it is estimated that in order for a Medicare doctor today  to make a modest $200,000 gross annually, they would have to see 35-40 patients a day for a year. If we continue in this direction will will experience the same level of healthcare they are experiencing in Britain where doctors  have started seeing patients via SKYPE. As the old saying says, the road to hell is paved with good intentions. Welcome to hell

Obama and Quantitative Easing; The Rich Get Very Rich

The Federal Reserve has bought back  $3 trillion worth of government bonds in an process called Quantitative Easing (QE). The rational is to inject money into the economy by converting the investors banks reserves that are in Treasury to cash; supposedly this would loosen up lending while still keeping interest rates down. The problem with this is the banks are sitting on the cash, 81.5% of the revenue produced by the QE as excess reserves; if a bank has more in reserves than needed to make loans it is called excess reserves.  In the past, banks would not get interest on these excess reserves so they had an incentives to give out loans. But in a Catch 22, the Federal Reserve pays the banks an incentive to tie up the very money they want to free up by paying them interest on excess reserves.  "Paying interest on reserves allows a central bank to maintain its influence over market interest rates independent of the quantity of reserves created by its liquidity facilities". 81.5 % Of Money Created Through Quantitative Easing is Sitting There Gathering Dust Instead of Helping the Economy

The primary avenue of wealth for the middle class has always been home ownership. But the catalyst of this market collapse was a glut of houses created governmental social engineering monstrous greed of some investment banks.  As a result of the Great Recession the middle class lost amount 25 years or 40% of their wealth; almost all of which was equity in their homes. The middle class is now stuck underwater and are unable, as they did in the past, capitalize on the equity of their houses and move up to a better and more expensive house, which in the past kept the housing market alive and healthy. Instead, until the price of housing increases enough the middle class once again has equity in the homes, the housing market and economy will remain flat. The only one buying houses right now are investment banks, so those few families that are actually looking to buy moderate cost homes, have to complete with them in a very small market and are usually unsuccessful. The end result of all this is the very rich are getting richer, the extra money is going into Wall Street, while the middle class and poor continue to flounder in this great recession. In other words the biggest driver of the concentration of wealth in the single digit percent of the wealthiest Americans, is the direct result of QE. 

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Why There Is A Looming Shutdown/ Default

If you want to hear extremist ranting you can listen to President Obama's Tantrum press conference Oct 8; one should be asking if using words like "hostage," "bomb thrower," and "extremist" is really the beat path towards a negotiating with the GOP. The fact is one never knows which Obama is going to show up.

 The fact is one never knows which Obama is going to show up. Is it the 2006 Senator "'The fact that we are here today to debate raising America's debt limit is a sign of leadership failure...  

Is it the 2006 Senator "'The fact that we are here today to debate raising America's debt limit is a sign of leadership failure. It is a sign that the US Government can not pay its own bills. It is a sign that we now depend on ongoing financial assistance from foreign countries to finance our Government's reckless fiscal policies. Increasing America's debt weakens us domestically and internationally. Leadership means that "the buck stops here." Instead, Washington is shifting the burden of bad choices today onto the backs of our children and grandchildren. America has a debt problem and a failure of leadership. Americans deserve better.' 

Or the President on January 12, 2011 "It’s important for us to pause for a moment and make sure that we are talking with each other in a way that heals, not in a way that wounds. Only a more civil and honest public discourse can help us face the challenges of our nation."

 Or is he the 2013 President "Tea Party Republicans flirted with the idea of default, a nuclear bomb."

Or is he the 2013 President "Tea Party Republicans flirted with the idea of default, a nuclear bomb." The President is governing against the will of the people, which explains his 37% approval rating. The reason Obama was re-elected had nothing to do with ObamaCare or Gun control, it was the economy and the GOP's failure to present a cohesive plan.

The issue is President Obama and the Democrats have refused to include the Republicans in enacting any major legislation, including ObamaCare. At no time in the history of our country has one party completely locked out the other party in this manner. Least one forget, even though the Iraqi war had bipartisan passage,it was the law of the land but the Democrats then tried to defund it later, just like now but the shoe is on the other foot.

Obama misrepresented his healthcare plan at every turn and broke every promise that he made about his health plan (in a non-politically correct world, ObamaCare is a pack of lies)

What we are seeing is President  that has no leadership qualities or ability;a basic quality being trust. President Obama will say what ever he thinks will forward his agenda, regardless if there is any truth or not and the American people are staring to catch on. The best example is ObamaCare.  President (and Candidate) Obama misrepresented his healthcare plan at every turn and broke every promise that he made about his health plan (in a non-politically correct world, ObamaCare is a pack of lies)
and the result being a law that nobody wants. America is not about just accepting what an overreaching government forces on the people; it is about the people taking control and self rule. That is why there ia a looming Shutdown/ Default; it's America trying to take back it's country.

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

The Pending Implosion of the US; What's the Fix?

In a recent email correspondence with Georgia Beardslee (a KSCO Santa Cruz  radio personality), she asked what to do with the downward spiral of our country,; "The question is, how do we fix it?  It is like a cancer that has metastasized!" This was my answer.

I do not believe there is a fix.  With some $80 trillion in debt, laws piled on laws (Obamacare has grown from 2700 pages to 20,000 pages) . The US was an experiment in self rule that may in it's present form run it's course. In the book the 4th turning it explains that as history has unfolded there were 4 distinct epochs (see attached for some exerts). We are now entering the 4th turning a time of tearing down and knocking out the dead wood before a time of rebuilding. I belive what is important is to keep the belief in the rugged individualist alive. The day will come when we will need to rebuild and our founding fathers have already written the documents for us (there is nothing going on in the US that our founding fathers didn't warn us about).  As the US economy has descended in Crony Capitalism our government has decompensated (a term used in psychology to define a mental person losing control) into a form of fascism. It is a truism that the larger government grows the more corrupt it becomes. When the US government finally implodes we will once again need to form state governments and they will need to answer to the will of the people; our time is coming soon to save our country when the collectivists once again fail. 

 So we just need to be here for each other; like the early Christians that spread the word of the gospel, not by evangelizing but helping and feeding the poor, so those looking for a better way started looking at what the Christians had that led them to their love and caring of their fellow man.

Here is a small section from the Forth Turning; I highly suggest you read this book.

The reward of the historian is to locate patterns that recur over time and to discover the natural rhythms of social experience. In fact, at the core of modern history lies this remarkable pattern : Over the past five centuries, Anglo-American society has entered a new era—a new turning—every two decades or so. At the start of each turning, people change how they feel about themselves, the culture, the nation,and the future. Turnings come in cycles of four. Each cycle spans the length of a long human life, roughly eighty to one hundred years, a unit of time the ancients called the saeculum. Together, the four turnings of the saeculum comprise history's seasonal rhythm of growth, maturation, entropy, and destruction:

The First Turning is a High, an upbeat era of strengthening institutions and weakening individualism, when a new civic order implants and the old values regime decays.

 The Second Turning is an Awakening, a passionate era of spiritual upheaval, when the civic order comes under attack from a new values regime.

The Third Turning is an Unraveling, adowncast era of strengthening individualism and weakening institutions, when the old civic order decays and the new values regime implants.

The Fourth Turning is a Crisis, a decisive era of secular upheaval, when the values regime propels the replacement of the old civic order with a new one.

The next Fourth Turning is due to begin shortly after the new millennium, midway through the Oh-Oh decade. Around the year 2005, a sudden spark will catalyze a Crisis mood. Remnants of the old social order will disintegrate. Political and economic trust will implode. Real hardship will beset the land, with severe distress that could involve questions of class, race, nation, and empire. Yet this time of trouble will bring seeds of social rebirth. Americans will share a regret about recent mistakes— and a resolute new consensus about what to do. The very survival of the nation will feel at stake. Sometime before the year 2025, America will pass through a great gate in history...  But in the crucible of Crisis, that will change. As the old civic order gives way, Americans will have to craft a new one. This will require a values consensus and, to administer it, the empowerment of a strong new political regime. If all goes well, there could be a renaissance of civic trust, and more.

 Strauss, William; Howe, Neil (2009-01-16). The Fourth Turning (Kindle Locations 154-156). Crown Publishing Group. Kindle Edition.

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Why Does Our President Hate Our Federal Parks? Or Is It Us?

These were two letters to the editor written into their 150 word framework, but they work together to complete this argument of how little the Democrats and our President cares for the citizenry; their collective agenda is everything.

The evidence is in and there is little doubt the White House is directing the closure of all the Federal Parks in the country * and not because there is no choice because of the partial Government shutdown; the US has had numerous partial government shutdowns, but only under this President have the parks been closed (maybe it's a Democrat thing as Governor Brown pulled the same stunt in California  in 2011 in order to save .1% of the budget it takes to keep the parks open**). In this case it costs nearly twice the cost to refuse access to many parks as it does to keep the parks open***. One might ask wonder why our President dislikes the Park system that the American people love so much. The answer comes from a DC Park Ranger when he explained his marching orders, We’ve been told to make life as difficult for people as we can." ..So it's not the Parks; it's us!

*Further proof President Obama is personally directing the closing of Federal Parks, Nancy Pelosi at a rally for illegal immigration rights , defended the president, thanking him for making an exception to the shutdown and “enabling us to gather here.” "She also said veterans told her the administration “bent over backwards” to allow them to visit the World War II Memorial on the Mall, which has been the site of several clashes between the public and park rangers since the shutdown began." The truth of course the is no need for the President to bend over backwards, he could simply allow the veterans to visit the WWll Memorial as he allowed the illegal immigrants on the Mall; something he shows no interest in doing. As Harry Reid recently said, "Why would I want to do that?" The end result is it is not a huge jump to realize that The President and the Democrat leadership has no respect at all for the American people; they are simply a means to an end. 

**The Federal Park System budget is approx $3 billion which is .08 % of the countries $3.7 trillion Federal Budget (that's about 1/15 of 1%). In other words the President wants to close down the crown jewels of country, which it is estimated to costs local communities $30 million a day, for what boils down to a rounding error of the Federal budget,

***People first noticed what the NPS was up to when the the World War II Memorial on the National Mall was “closed.” Just to be clear, the memorial is an open plaza. There is nothing to operate.Sometimes there might be a ranger standing around. But he’s not collecting tickets or opening gates. Putting up barricades and posting guards to “close” the World War II Memorial takes more resources and manpower than “keeping it open.” Park Police 
Our President just wants the American people to suffer unless he gets his way. The White House has ordered every  Federal park closed, but made sure the federal golf courses were left open. Many of these are open air parks that  cost more to close, than to keep them open. Harry Reid, when asked about keeping the funding for NIH child cancer patients, flippantly  said, "Why would I do that?," apparently meaning that regardless of the cause, the American people will continue to suffer. While the press and Democrats continue to harp on not stopping Obamacare (it's the law and constitutional), it was enacted against the will of the people and remains the most contentious law in memory. American exceptionalism means the will of the people is more important than taxes or the over reaching dictates of a repressive  government. That's what 1776 was all about, or have we all forgotten?


This added item is enough to leave one speechless with the governments hubris;
In South Dakota the Park Service attempted to cone off  the pull outs on the highway near Mount Rushmore! so the mountain could not be viewed! When they were caught and questioned about it the Federal park system told representatives of the the state the cones were a safety precaution to help channel cars into viewing areas rather than to bar their entrance. Look at the photo and you decide what purpose the cones served.

Gestapo Tactics Meet Senior Citizens at Yellowstone "...thousands of people ... found themselves in a national park as the federal government shutdown went into effect on Oct. 1. For many hours ... (a) tour group, which included senior citizen visitors from Japan, Australia, Canada and the United States, were locked in a Yellowstone National Park hotel under armed guard. The tourists were treated harshly by armed park employees, she said, so much so that some of the foreign tourists with limited English skills thought they were under arrest."

 Political Cartoons by Glenn McCoy