“America will always do the right thing,

… but only after everything else fails.”

By Jack E. Lohman

That’s Winston Churchill, talking about our politicians. And at the time he didn’t even know about the $46 million they received from the insurance industry and $60 million from Big Pharma and the hospitals. Oh yea; they’ll do the right thing alright.

Funny how that works. The industry got their profits from patients and business premiums, shared them with the politicians to work against those same patients and businesses to put even more profits in the industry’s pocket. And today we get word that “insurance premiums” are increasing by 9% even with a stagnant economy.

Bingo!  That’s capitalism at work.

Well, with a little bit of political bribery thrown in.

The people are mad, businesses are mad, but the politicians aren’t. They love the arrangement, this pocketing a share of patient dollars. That’s why politicians always prefer “private industry” over “public services.” One can give campaign cash; the other can’t.

Question #1: Will 40 million people lose their current health care “insurance” if single payer is adopted, as the naysayers claim?

If we do it right, indeed they would and they should. But they’ll keep their same doctor and hospital and keep their same health care!!!  And if that’s not good enough, you or your employer can supplement it to add all the frills you want!

Oh, they didn’t tell you that?

In some cases single-payer will even improve care. We’ll go to the same caregivers as before, but they will send their invoice to the single-payer administrator instead. That, without adding all of the costs needed to support our current inefficient, middleman system, or having the insurance CEO cutting care to increase profits. That won’t happen anymore.

Question #2:  Will taxes go up?

Again, if we do it right, taxes will go up for some, progressively, with the rich paying more than the middle class and the poor paying little or nothing. But whatever we pay we’ll get back through lower product costs, a drastically improved economy, dollars being spent on society rather than waste, fewer companies going belly-up, and jobs staying in the U.S. versus being exported to countries with universal health care already.

One thing you can count on … is that if single-payer were really, really bad, the insurance industry would not have to spend $46 million bribing politicians to block it!  And of course, with public funding of campaigns the politicians wouldn’t have to take the bribes in the first place, they’d just do the right thing.

Tidbits

— Importantly, we’d pay for health care with taxes instead of with inefficient commerce. You know, instead of the massive profits needed by the insurance industry to offset high CEO salaries and bonuses, high shareholder profits, marketing and actuarial costs, broker commissions, and even the lobbying and campaign contributions that the insurers then pass on to the patient via their employer premiums. Those costs won’t be included.

— By paying in taxes we can provide 100% of our population with first-class Cheney-care for the same amount of dollars we are spending today to cover just 85% of the population. A business leader will understand this immediately. We are now funding health care on the backs of corporations, who incidentally add these costs to the price of the product and we reimburse them at the cash register. But worse, we load them down and they can’t spend these dollars on American employees and we make them uncompetitive with foreign competitors. That’s a terrible deal for corporations.

— Except for the insurance companies, who now stand to reap a windfall profit if insurance mandates go though and the government requires everbody to buy their product. This is political corruption beyond belief.

4 Responses to “America will always do the right thing,

  1. Jack,

    You hit the nail on the head when you said, “if single-payer were really, really bad, the insurance industry would not have to spend $46 million bribing politicians to block it! And of course, with public funding of campaigns the politicians wouldn’t have to take the bribes in the first place, they’d just do the right thing.”

    Here is what I said at the June 13th Dem Party convention in Green Bay:

    “Congressional leaders have said a single-payer plan is politically impractical. Let me translate, Congress is afraid to stand up to the powerful well-funded lobbyists from BIG Pharma and the insurance industry, because they risk losing generous campaign contributions.

    What Congress has found to be politically practical is give insurance industry giant AIG $170 Billion in mostly unregulated bail out funds. That $170 Billion could have been the down payment to change over our health care system to single payer. If we are going to have to pay for something, let’s make sure we get something for it.”

    You can find the entire YouTube clip of my speech at my blog.

  2. Thanks Paulette, and thanks for all you do to promote single-payer health care. I highly recommend that folks watch this piece on Paul Ryan and health care, and also Obama’s non-response to Paulette’s question.

  3. clyde winter says:

    Following the money connects the legalized bribery of so-called campaign “contributions” with the unwillingness of our Congress and President to endorse or even consider the only reasonable remedy to the health care crisis in the U.S.A. that will:
    . improve the health and health care outcomes of Americans,
    . eliminate substantial waste and bureaucracy in the current administration of health care, thus reducing overall cost about 25 percent,
    . reduce and control future health care cost increases,
    . provide all Americans free and full choice in their health care provider and treatment,
    . provide comprehensive health care to all,
    . end the gatekeeper/middleman role for health insurance corporations that puts them between you (and your family) and the doctor (and the care that you need and would choose if you could).
    . allow business to employ American workers in America without the financial penalty caused by our current employer-based, insurance industry administered health care system.

    The solution to our health care crisis is a national health care program, which continues to employ the existing mix and network of doctors and other health care professionals, clinics, hospitals, associations, certifications and credentials, laboratories, suppliers, teaching and training facilities and universities, and so forth, unchanged. The one significant thing that would change is that health insurance corporations would no longer administer the health care system. Instead, the U.S. federal government would be responsible for the administration of the system (as it is in dozens of other countries which have substantially lower costs per capita, and better health care outcomes).

    Billing is a whole lot simpler and far less costly, with much less “markup”, if tongue depressors and toilet paper and disposable thermometers are billed to a single-payer by the case or the pallet, instead of billing each individual item, for each individual patient, through one of over a thousand different insurance policies with different terms and fine print and “coverage”.

    One thing many people may not realize is that the billing process required by the insurance corporations is now driving and distorting the keeping of patient medical records. With a single-payer administration, medical records will be created and kept for one purpose only – their original purpose – to aid doctors and nurses in the provision of proper health care. Currently, medical record keeping is being drastically altered, computerized, and formalized to aid insurance corporation bureaucrats to expedite their complicated costly billing practices. This is another example of how the insurance corporations are jeopardizing and compromising health care due to focusing on their profits.

  4. You are correct, Clyde, and can you imagine if John McCain (the guy I voted for) were to get his way and open the state borders to insurers? Competition, he says. But the lack of competition is not our problem, insurance bureaucracy waste is. And expanding hospital and clinic billing departments to 5000 national insurers rather than the 1000 state insurers they now have to deal with, complicates it more and increases the waste even more.

    But leave it to our politicians who are effectively on the payroll of the insurance industry (and just about every other industry as well).

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