Unexpected! ObamaCare makes healthcare *more* expensive faster!

July 28, 2011

Well color me shocked. Who would’ve guessed that a badly-crafted 2,000-page bill that no one read and was rushed through the night and is just chock-full of new regulations, bureaucracies, and mandates would actually bend the cost-curve up?

Anyone with a lick of sense, I guess, which lets out the Democratic Party, their Leftist supporters, and the fawning media. (But I repeat myself.)

From The Washington Times:

Despite President Obama’s promises to rein in health care costs as part of his reform bill, health spending nationwide is expected to rise more than if the sweeping legislation had never become law.

Total spending is projected to grow annually by 5.8 percent under Mr. Obama’s Affordable Care Act, according to a 10-year forecast by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services released Thursday. Without the ACA, spending would grow at a slightly slower rate of 5.7 percent annually.

CMS officials attributed the growth to an expansion of the insured population. Under the plan, an estimated 23 million Americans are expected to obtain insurance in 2014, largely through state-based exchanges and expanded Medicaid eligibility.

The federal government is projected to spend 20 percent more on Medicaid, while spending on private health insurance is expected to rise by 9.4 percent.

A tenth of a percent is not small change, when we’re talking about the scale of healthcare spending in the US. Moreover, we were told that implementing ObamaCare was essential to bending the cost-curve down. Not even, not up.

So, then, what was the point? The only thing accomplished is greater government control over and regulation of a crucial sector of our economy, which will only lead to a nationalized, Socialized single-payer system.

Oh, wait. That is the point!

No matter what it costs the rest of us.

via Hot Air, which has the White House rebuttal.

LINKS: Pirate’s Cove notes that ObamaCare cost more than doing nothing. Fancy that.

(Crossposted at Sister Toldjah)


ObamaCare as the road to CanadaCare

September 14, 2010

It’s a busy day today, so posting will likely be light. In the meantime, from Reason.TV, here’s an interview with author Sally Pipes about the problems with single-payer health care systems, which she covers in her new book, The Truth about ObamaCare:

(Crossposted at Sister Toldjah)


ObamaCare: the value of your life

May 1, 2010

This is how a death panel works. In Britain, a man is denied life-extending medicine by the National Health Service because his case wasn’t exceptional:

A CANCER patient has been denied NHS funding for a new cancer drug which could add years to his life.

It means that health specialists will be unable to prescribe Everolimus, which costs about £40,000 a year and can extend lives by up to two years.

Doctors treating Graeme Johnstone, 54, from Middleton St George, near Darlington applied to the local primary care trust for funding for the drug. But NHS County Durham and Darlington rejected the request.

Fully licensed, and widely available in France and Canada, Everolimus, also known as Affinitor, has a proven track record. But so far it is not being made available through the NHS after the body which vets new drugs – the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (Nice) – decided not to recommend it.

Controversially, Nice uses a formula which calculates whether life-extending drugs represent good value for money.

And just what were they valuing against the cost of the drug Mr. Johnstone wants? Could it be the gentleman’s very life?

Makes you want to run out and apply for British citizenship, doesn’t it?

It’s as sure a thing as the sun rising in the East in the morning: a nationalized health system in which the government determines the price paid for everything inevitably becomes a system in which care is rationed and denied to save money.

Behold the brave new world under ObamaCare.

(via The Jawa Report)


Only the beginning…

March 18, 2010

Senator Sherrod Brown of Ohio admits on Rachel Maddow’s show what only a fool cannot see: that passage of ObamaCare is only the first step toward single-payer, nationalized health care, in which we will all be wards of the State:

MADDOW:  Should we not expect the public option anytime soon?

BROWN:  No.  Just—Rachel, you know history.  I‘ve seen your show enough to know that you understand sort of how progressive—the progressive movements worked.  When we passed, what, Social Security was passed in the ‘30s.  It wasn‘t all that great at the time.  When Medicare was passed, it was good, but not great.

… That‘s what happens here.  This—you can bet that a lot of us are going to introduce a public option bill.

As soon the president signs this, we‘ll start working towards it. It may take a year.  It may take five years. There are a lot of things we‘re going to do to continue to improve this system.

We obviously don‘t give up on it.  We don‘t get everything we want.  But we work—we look how this bill works, we look how this new law works, and we continue to try to improve it.

This bill is the wedge to open the door to European-style socialization and the transformation of Americans from free citizens to infantilized dependents. It is a Trojan Horse, and we must not let it through the gates.

RELATED: A new study shows that, rather than creating jobs as Nancy Pelosi claims, will cost the American economy as much as 700,000 jobs.  Meanwhile, a survey of family physicians claims that perhaps up to 46% will feel compelled to leave medicine should ObamaCare pass.

So, they’re going to forcibly guarantee insurance to more people while driving doctors out of the profession, thus increasing the workload for those who remain… And we’re supposed to believe this will result in a better medical system??

Care to buy a bridge?


They wouldn’t give him a drink of water…

March 7, 2010

Life (and death) under socialized medicine: a patient at a London hospital was so badly neglected by nurses that his death was referred to the police for criminal investigation:

A man of 22 died in agony of dehydration after three days in a leading teaching hospital.

Kane Gorny was so desperate for a drink that he rang police to beg for their help.

They arrived on the ward only to be told by doctors that everything was under control.

The next day his mother Rita Cronin found him delirious and he died within hours.

She said nurses had failed to give him vital drugs which controlled fluid levels in his body. ‘He was totally dependent on the nurses to help him and they totally betrayed him.’

A coroner has such grave concerns about the case that it has been referred to police.

This is just one of many scandals at National Health Service hospitals that are being reported almost, it seems, daily in the British press. The situation is so appalling, the Mail Online reports, that a government commission has called on nurses to sign a public pledge that they will give everyone decent care.

Take a good look at Britain’s NHS; that’s our likely future under ObamaCare.

Comforting, isn’t it?

(via Dan Collins)


A gigantic hypocrite, eh?

March 6, 2010

About a month ago, we reported on Danny Williams, the Premier of Newfoundland and Labrador in Canada who suddenly fled the Canadian single-payer health-care system to seek treatment for a heart ailment in the United States. We wondered at the time was his reason was.

It’s simple, he’s an elitist hypocrite:

An unapologetic Danny Williams says he was aware his trip to the United States for heart surgery earlier this month would spark outcry, but he concluded his personal health trumped any public fallout over the controversial decision.

In an interview with The Canadian Press, Williams said he went to Miami to have a “minimally invasive” surgery for an ailment first detected nearly a year ago, based on the advice of his doctors.

“This was my heart, my choice and my health,” Williams said late Monday from his condominium in Sarasota, Fla.

“I did not sign away my right to get the best possible health care for myself when I entered politics.”

Good for you, Danny. I’m sure your constituents will understand while they have to languish on a wait-list for needed treatment or even participate in a lottery to get an appointment with a doctor, because the Canadian system you vehemently defend rations care for those who can’t jet off to Miami.

But don’t think it’s a reflection on Canadian health care:

Williams said his decision to go to the U.S. did not reflect any lack of faith in his own province’s health care system.

“I have the utmost confidence in our own health care system in Newfoundland and Labrador, but we are just over half a million people,” he said.

“We do whatever we can to provide the best possible health care that we can in Newfoundland and Labrador. The Canadian health care system has a great reputation, but this is a very specialized piece of surgery that had to be done and I went to somebody who’s doing this three or four times a day, five, six days a week.”

Danny, buddy. Do you notice something off here? If your system didn’t ration care, you wouldn’t have had to flee across the border! Don’t you think it somewhat telling that the free-market system to the south had just the guy you needed available right away?

Wouldn’t it be nice if all Canadians could enjoy that level of service?

I guess Newfie pols are more important than Average Joe Canuck.

Oh, folks, lest I forget: Danny plans to get the Canadian health service to pay for his medical vacation in Miami:

Williams also said he paid for the treatment, but added he would seek any refunds he would be eligible for in Canada.

“If I’m entitled to any reimbursement from any Canadian health care system or any provincial health care system, then obviously I will apply for that as anybody else would,” he said.

Jerk.  Waiting

(via International Liberty)

LINKS: More at Sister Toldjah.


That was then, this is now

March 6, 2010

Before he became President, Barack Obama felt one couldn’t govern by ramming through legislation with just 51 votes in the Senate:

Unless, of course, he actually becomes President and there’s something he really, really wants … even if most of us don’t.

It’s different now. Somehow.


Green Eggs and Bam

February 19, 2010

I do not like your health care plan, Bam I Am:

This is from the same group that made the Jack Webb schools Obama videos that were such a hit.

Well done!  Applause


Private health care me, not for thee

February 3, 2010

From the Department of Hypocrisy: the Premier of Canada’s Newfoundland and Labrador province, Danny Williams, has run screaming from Canada’s vaunted universal health-care system to seek treatment in the US:

Newfoundland Premier Danny Williams will undergo heart surgery later this week in the United States.

Deputy premier Kathy Dunderdale confirmed the treatment at a news conference Tuesday, but would not reveal the location of the operation or how it would be paid for.

“He has gone to a renowned expert in the procedure that he needs to have done,” said Ms. Dunderdale, who will become acting premier while Mr. Williams is away for three to 12 weeks.

“In consultation with his own doctors, he’s decided to go that route.”

Mr. Williams’ decision to leave Canada for the surgery has raised eyebrows over his apparent shunning of Canada’s health-care system.

I’ll say. So, the single-payer wonder that is Canada’s health-care system couldn’t provide the needed specialist, whereas the free-market system in the US could? Or was it that the rationing that is inevitable in such systems wouldn’t allow him access fast enough? That would perhaps be ironic, and certainly hypocritical, since Williams has been a fervid defender of Canada’s system.

These are interesting questions, and the answers may well be relevant to the health-care debate here in the United States. We want to wish Premier Williams well with his surgery and hope he has a speedy recovery (and, if this is heart trouble, perhaps he should lay off the poutine?); we’ll be very interested in what he has to say on his return.

LINKS: More from Neo-neocon, The Jawa Report, Big Government, and Fausta.


The Bizarro legislature

January 30, 2010

Remember Bizarro World? The planet on which every Earthman had a weird duplicate, and these duplicates would do the opposite of whatever was the intelligent, sensible thing to do? A people for whom doing the dumb thing was doing the right thing?

That’s the California legislature.

Driving pedal-to-the-metal for that cliff, the state senate voted to approve legislation earlier passed by the Appropriations Committee to create a single-payer universal health-care system:

The 22-14 vote was nearly party-line, with one Democrat, Sen. Lou Correa, D-Santa Ana, voting no. It now moves to the Assembly.

The proposal would create the California Health System, which would be funded by pooling all federal and state money California currently spends on health care and a yet-to-be-determined payroll tax. It is anticipated to cost about $200 billion a year. All state residents would be provided health care and people could buy private health care to cover services not offered through the state plan.

Why do I describe this as something out of Bizarro World? Because the state will run out of cash in less than three months:

State Controller John Chiang issued a stern warning Friday about California’s cash reserves, telling legislative leaders and Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger they must act on nearly $9 billion in budget cuts the governor is seeking by March — or the state will run out of cash to pay its bills.

Without making those cuts — which Chiang says will pump $1.3 billion into the state’s checking account — California would be broke by April 1, no fooling.

So, in a time of severe recession with unemployment and under-employment pushing 20%, state revenues crashing, and the treasury almost empty, Senate Democrats want to create a $200 billion entitlement (and we know that’s the low end) and tax even more an already over-taxed population.

Only in Bizarro World could this be considered a bright idea.

(hat tip: Michelle Malkin)


California aims for the cliff

January 23, 2010

Remember that final scene in Thelma & Louise, when Geena Davis and Susan Sarandon drive their car over the cliff in an act of suicide? The camera freezes with the car in mid-air, and we’re treated to a series of the two women’s happiest moments on their road to death:

That’s the California Legislature, which, in the midst of a severe recession, high unemployment, and budget deficits the size of the Central Valley, wants to revive plans for a state universal health-care plan:

Democrats resurrect single-payer health care bill

With federal health care reform on life support, California Democrats on Thursday resurrected a $200 billion-a-year state-based single-payer health insurance bill.

The Senate Appropriations Committee voted 6-3 on party lines and without comment to lift from suspense the dead file, Senate Bill 810 by Sen. Mark Leno, D-San Francisco.

It calls for merging the state’s public and private health insurance systems into a single California-run agency. All Californians would be eligible for insurance coverage with the poor receiving subsidized benefits.

The bill does not spell out how California would pay for a program that would cost more than twice the state’s $85 billion general fund. That would be left up to an appointed panel and ultimately, voters.

(Summary article from which the headline was taken here.)

Of course the bill doesn’t specify how this mess would be paid for; if Senator Leno and his social-democratic colleagues were honest with the public, they would admit that the only way to pay for this plan would be through new taxes and borrowing. But they can’t, because the mood of the California public is dead-set against any new taxes and debt: just last year, Propositions 1A-1F, which would have imposed a raft of new taxes in a vain attempt to plug our budget deficit, were rejected by overwhelming majorities of the voters. There’s no way the public would agree to the astronomical and economy-killing costs attendant on a single-payer “Cal-Care plan.”

And don’t think the costs the costs wouldn’t skyrocket from the “mere” $170 billion estimated in the article. Three states already have universal-coverage plans: Maine, Massachusetts, and Tennessee. All three are train wrecks. Failures. They do not control costs, because capping price is not the same as controlling costs. In Maine’s case, the program became so expensive that they had to limit enrollment, undercutting the whole raison d’etre of a single-payer system. Massachusetts is considering capping reimbursements to providers, which will inevitably lead to fewer providers taking “public” patients and longer waiting times to see doctors who do. Tennessee experienced companies ending their private health programs and putting their people on TennCare because it cost them less, but it had the unintended consequence of vastly increasing the burden on the state budget.

Leno’s plan is bizarre as a matter of politics, too. Survey after survey shows that nationalized health care is unpopular with the public, and that majority is growing. Once people realize what single-payer care means in terms of increased government interference in and control over their health care choices, most don’t want it. Surveys of Bay Staters who voted for Scott Brown in the recent special election revealed that opposition to ObamaCare was the single most important issue for most of them. And that was in a state even more liberal than California.

Think about the so-called tea-party protests of the spring and summer. Recall the angry town hall meetings when citizens told their lords and masters public servants they didn’t want ObamaCare. Witness how the Democrats have been killed in three straight elections since then, all because of opposition to nationalized health care and fiscal lunacy.

And yet the progressives in the legislature think that, somehow, California Democrats’ experience will be different?

Go ahead, Louise. Hit the gas. Just don’t take us over the cliff with you.


Our future under ObamaCare

December 5, 2009

Journalist John Stossel explores the differences between a medical system run by the government, in this case, Canada’s, and ours, which is run on a for-profit basis.

The comparison isn’t inspiring:

Is this what you want to go through? Really?

(via The Jawa Report)

UPDATE: The video has since been removed from YouTube, but you can watch this other Stossel piece from ABC.


We’re going to let you die

October 16, 2009

Robert Reich -Left-wing lawyer and economist, Rhodes scholar, Secretary of Labor under Bill Clinton, and adviser to President Obama- tells a Berkeley audience in 2007 what a presidential candidate would say, in his view, if he were being honest about nationalized health care:

Think about what he said, especially if you have elderly relatives you care about, or if you like the scientific advances fostered by the American system. Or both. Then call your congresscritter.

Unlike President Obama and the Democratic leadership in Congress, Secretary Reich at least does us the courtesy of being honest.

(via Pax Parabellum)

LINKS: Much more at Verum Serum.


Three ObamaCare videos you should see

August 22, 2009

The first is from ABC’s John Stossel, who shreds the Obama administration’s so-called health care “reform” plan. William Jacobson calls this scary. I agree.

Next, a US Marine carpet bombs his congressman over ObamaCare:

And yes, the media has already started attacking this Marine. More at Hot Air.

Finally, via Zombywolf we have video of the ever-bombastic Bill O’Reilly interviewing the former head of the Canadian Medical Association about what he thinks of the proposed US reforms:


As Maine goes, so goes ObamaCare?

August 21, 2009

Along with Tennessee and Massachusetts, the state of Maine recently established its own state-paid health insurance system, called DirigoChoice. Its provisions are very similar to provisions in the various national health-care “reform” bills floating around the House and Senate, so Maine’s experience may well provide us with a glimpse of the future under ObamaCare.

And that glimpse should be all we need to just say no:

Here’s how the program was supposed to work. Two government programs would cover the uninsured. First the legislature greatly expanded MaineCare, the state’s Medicaid program. Today Maine families with incomes of up to $44,000 a year are eligible; 22% of the population is now in Medicaid, roughly twice the national average.

Then the state created a “public option” known as DirigoChoice. (Dirigo is the state motto, meaning “I Lead.”) This plan would compete with private plans such as Blue Cross. To entice lower income Mainers to enroll, it offered taxpayer-subsidized premiums. The plan’s original funding source was $50 million of federal stimulus money the state got in 2003. Over time, the plan was to be “paid for by savings in the health-care system.” This is precisely the promise of ObamaCare. Maine saved by squeezing payments to hospitals and physicians.

The program flew off track fast. At its peak in 2006, only about 15,000 people had enrolled in the DirigoChoice program. That number has dropped to below 10,000, according to the state’s own reporting. About two-thirds of those who enrolled already had insurance, which they dropped in favor of the public option and its subsidies. Instead of 128,000 uninsured in the program today, the actual number is just 3,400. Despite the giant expansions in Maine’s Medicaid program and the new, subsidized public choice option, the number of uninsured in the state today is only slightly lower that in 2004 when the program began.

Why did this happen? Among the biggest reasons is a severe adverse selection problem: The sickest, most expensive patients crowded into DirigoChoice, unbalancing its insurance pool and raising costs. That made it unattractive for healthier and lower-risk enrollees. And as a result, few low-income Mainers have been able to afford the premiums, even at subsidized rates.

This problem was exacerbated because since the early 1990s Maine has required insurers to adhere to community rating and guaranteed issue, which requires that insurers cover anyone who applies, regardless of their health condition and at a uniform premium. These rules—which are in the Obama plan—have relentlessly driven up insurance costs in Maine, especially for healthy people.

Read the whole thing, and then call your congresscritter and tell him or her that doing nothing is better than making things worse.

(hat tip: Hot Air)


No prisoners!

August 19, 2009

jollyroger

With the administration and congressional Democrats in retreat and perhaps on the verge of a rout over health care, The Telegraph’s Gerald Warner hoists the Jolly Roger and declares “This will be a one-term presidency:”

President Pantywaist in retreat: Barack Obama hoists the white flag over Stalinist health care proposals

The white flag is flying over Camp Obama, which makes a pleasant change from the red flag that, metaphorically speaking, has been flying there since January 20. Barack Obama’s plan for socialised health care on the Stalinist model across the United States is now in full retreat. Not only will it not play in Peoria, it will not play anywhere.

Politicians returning to Washington after scrubbing off the tar and feathers acquired at town-hall meetings are bringing with them a blast of reality that has been absent from Obama’s dreamland regime since his inauguration. For months Obama had been trumpeting the indispensable nature of his “public option” in a new health care system. Suddenly, it is no big deal. Kathleen Sebelius, the Health and Human Services Secretary, is now telling Americans that taxpayer-funded insurance was “not the essential element”.

So, President Pantywaist is in full retreat….

And when the foe is in retreat, you do not give him any respite, any chance to regroup to hold his position or counterattack. No, instead you press the attack until the whole statist edifice of this “reform” bill crashes like the burning walls of a conquered fortress, not just the most egregious parts such as the public option. If the bill passes the House, as it may yet, then the Senate minority should filibuster it to death. And if the Democrats should invoke reconciliation, make them pay the price. And before then, opponents should keep the pressure on their congressmen and senators: phone calls, emails, letters, speaking at town halls (if the congresscritter isn’t afraid to host one) – any polite but firm way to get across that this dog’s breakfast of a plan will not do, that the whole thing has to go. Remind them that, before anything else, this is a liberty issue.

And then, on the first Tuesday in November, 2012, let’s make Mr. Warner’s prediction come true.

Take no prisoners. Devil


How NICE: a vision of ObamaCare?

August 3, 2009

The Telegraph reports on a stunning decision by the UK’s National Institute of Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) to stop therapeutic injections for tens of thousands of patients suffering from excruciating lower back pain -including the elderly- to save money:

The Government’s drug rationing watchdog says “therapeutic” injections of steroids, such as cortisone, which are used to reduce inflammation, should no longer be offered to patients suffering from persistent lower back pain when the cause is not known.

Instead the National Institute of Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) is ordering doctors to offer patients remedies like acupuncture and osteopathy.

Specialists fear tens of thousands of people, mainly the elderly and frail, will be left to suffer excruciating levels of pain or pay as much as £500 each for private treatment.

The NHS currently issues more than 60,000 treatments of steroid injections every year. NICE said in its guidance it wants to cut this to just 3,000 treatments a year, a move which would save the NHS £33 million.

But the British Pain Society, which represents specialists in the field, has written to NICE calling for the guidelines to be withdrawn after its members warned that they would lead to many patients having to undergo unnecessary and high-risk spinal surgery.

This is what health-care rationing under a single-payer system looks like, and it is exactly what Obama and the progressive Democrats want:

Is this what you want?  Not talking

(video via Hot Air)

LINKS: Ed Morrissey.

RELATED: You can rest assured neither Congress, the President, nor any federal employee will ever have to worry about rationed care: Congress’ own healthcare benefits: Membership has its privileges. (via Gaius) More from Michelle Malkin.


Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 12,902 other followers