Friday, November 5, 2010

Got Health Care?

The new health care law wasn't supposed to undercut employer plans that have provided most people in the U.S. with coverage for generations.

But last week a leading manufacturer told workers their (the workers) costs will jump partly because of the law.  Also, a Democratic governor laid out a scheme for employers to get out of health care by shifting workers into taxpayer-subsidized insurance markets that open in 2014.  Little by little, employers are going to opt out of offering health care coverage for their employees because it will cost them less money to do so.  Democrats argue this is speculation and that it will be more beneficial to employers to continue offering coverage rather than pay the fine of $2000 per employee for discontinuing coverage.  But if insurance costs continue to rise, which will be necessary to cover pre-existing conditions, it will eventually become more beneficial for many employers to drop health care coverage and pay the fine.
The left will vilify not only the insurance companies for raising their premiums, but also the employers for dropping the coverage just to make a profit.  Profits are just so terrible and ugly and evil.  But gee, if a company, whether it be insurance or manufacturing, doesn’t make a profit they don’t stay in business.  And if they don’t stay in business, people lose jobs.  When people lose jobs they lose health care coverage.  But when they’re unemployed and without health care coverage, they receive handouts from the government, which is exactly what the current administration wants. defines insurance as:  Risk-transfer mechanism that ensures full or partial financial compensation for the loss or damage caused by event(s) beyond the control of the insured party.  This is the best possible definition as it includes “full or partial financial compensation for loss”.  Some people mistakenly believe insurance companies are supposed to pay everyone’s medical bills in full and not make a profit of any kind, over and above paying their employees.  The reason they believe this is because politicians on the left (most of them very wealthy themselves) have vilified insurance companies as evil, profit-mongers.  But how many business owners in this country start or maintain a business that doesn’t make a profit?  If you own a small business that pays your bills and your employees, and doesn’t put money in the bank, yet you keep that business open simply to provide a product or service to the public, then God bless you.  You are definitely in a very small minority.  Most businesses open and stay open for one reason, to provide a service or product to the public in exchange for profit.  The owners want to live comfortably, after paying all their expenses, and put money in the bank. 
There is no doubt that health care in this country needs some work to control the rising costs and to assist those who truly cannot afford insurance.  I have no problem with that.  The problems with the new health care law are numerous.  1.  They wrote over 2,000 pages that very few representatives read or understood before voting it into law.  Before the bill was passed, before Congress had even voted on it, Representative John Conyers said, on the floor of the House “I love these members, they get up and say, ‘Read the bill.’  What good is reading the bill if it’s a thousand pages and you don’t have two days and two lawyers to find out what it means after you read the bill?”  And Nancy Pelosi said “We have to pass the bill so people can find out what’s in it.”  How could voters, even liberal voters, support any legislation to be passed when their elected representatives don’t even know what’s in it?
It’s funny how liberals hated Bush and didn’t trust him or the government when Bush was in office.  Yet, when Obama was inaugurated many of those same people immediately began trusting the government, even though only one person had really been replaced.  The same people are still holding office in the House and Senate and are still making the same bad choices and doing the same lame things they have always done.  Except this time they have a President who is pushing some of these things hard.
In my humble opinion there is a simple solution to the health care problems in this country.  Some say this is too simple but it seems to me that the more complicated it is, the less chances it has to work.  My plan is as follows:
Close the borders, enforce immigration laws and send illegals back where they came from.  This will save billions in Emergency Room costs.

Major TORT reform.  Set limits on awards except in the most heinous cases and stop the lawyers from getting rich, thus lowering malpractice insurance costs.  If a lawsuit is deemed frivolous by the court, make the person who filed it pay the costs themselves.  (The President has already said he won’t touch TORT reform.  Could that because he’s an attorney himself?)

 Open insurance policies nationwide instead of having state to state monopolies, creating more competition and giving people more choices, thus causing insurance companies to lower costs to competitive levels.

 Establish a minimum income for people who can't afford insurance and allow the government to subsidize them.  (This already happens.)  If people make enough money and choose not to have health care insurance, make them pay for their health care.  If they don't pay, prosecute them.  (This will give the lawyers an alternative way to make money.)

Use existing anti-discrimination laws to prevent insurance companies from dropping coverage in the event of catastrophic illness and to prevent them from denying a policy (to someone who can afford it) because of a pre-existing condition.  Then, rather than raise premiums for everyone to make up for these costs, the government could subsidize those who have pre-existing conditions.

In all honesty, the only people who have told me this plan won’t work have been Obama supporters who fully support the new health care law as is.  They tell me my plan won’t work; that it “won’t cover those people who don’t have insurance.”  But if you read what I said – it will.  Sometimes you just can’t change people’s minds, no matter how many facts you show them.

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