Sweet, sweet schadenfreude: Harvard faculty who championed #Obamacare angry for being subject to Obamacare

January 5, 2015
"Another Obamacare supporter learns the truth."

“Another Obamacare supporter learns the truth.”

Via Charles Cooke, this is too delicious for words:

For years, Harvard’s experts on health economics and policy have advised presidents and Congress on how to provide health benefits to the nation at a reasonable cost. But those remedies will now be applied to the Harvard faculty, and the professors are in an uproar.

Members of the Faculty of Arts and Sciences, the heart of the 378-year-old university, voted overwhelmingly in November to oppose changes that would require them and thousands of other Harvard employees to pay more for health care. The university says the increases are in part a result of the Obama administration’s Affordable Care Act, which many Harvard professors championed.

The faculty vote came too late to stop the cost increases from taking effect this month, and the anger on campus remains focused on questions that are agitating many workplaces: How should the burden of health costs be shared by employers and employees? If employees have to bear more of the cost, will they skimp on medically necessary care, curtail the use of less valuable services, or both?

What’s the old saying? “Be careful what you wish for; you might get it!”

Thomas Sowell has observed that the problem with letting government regulate so much is that the regulators seldom have to live with the consequences of their decisions. It’s the ordinary people who suffer. The same can be said for academics at Harvard (and other universities): state-run healthcare sounds great in theory –the libraries are full of books and articles endorsing it, as well as the conversation in faculty lounges– but make them live by the rules they advocated and they scream “UNFAIR!!”

What they’re being asked to do, of course, is what many of us already do: pay an increased but still small portion of their healthcare costs, which are going up for the university. This, in turn has caused a ruckus, though Harvard argues that provisions of the Affordable Care Act for them to take these steps:

In Harvard’s health care enrollment guide for 2015, the university said it “must respond to the national trend of rising health care costs, including some driven by health care reform,” otherwise known as the Affordable Care Act. The guide said that Harvard faced “added costs” because of provisions in the health care law that extend coverage for children up to age 26, offer free preventive services like mammograms and colonoscopies and, starting in 2018, add a tax on high-cost insurance, known as the Cadillac tax.

The quoted complaints are a treat, too:

Richard F. Thomas, a Harvard professor of classics and one of the world’s leading authorities on Virgil, called the changes “deplorable, deeply regressive, a sign of the corporatization of the university.”

Mary D. Lewis, a professor who specializes in the history of modern France and has led opposition to the benefit changes, said they were tantamount to a pay cut. “Moreover,” she said, “this pay cut will be timed to come at precisely the moment when you are sick, stressed or facing the challenges of being a new parent.”

You should take them seriously, because PhD’s in Classics and History are experts in the economics of health care. Apparently they need a refresher in one of the basic rules of economics: When you increase a business or other institution’s cost, it will deal with it in one of four ways. It will cease operation, deciding the expenses are too great; it will absorb the cost; it offset the cost by reducing other expenses; or it will offset the cost by passing all or a portion of it to the consumer. Harvard has chosen this last option. What, really, did these degree-bearing men and women expect?

I know, I know. A continued ride on the gravy train, because they’re educators, damn it!

On the other hand, Professor Lewis is right: this is tantamount to a pay cut, something many of us have experienced thanks to the skyrocketing premiums and massively increased deductibles under our new “affordable” system.

Why should Ivy League academics be exempt?

Congratulations, folks! You got what you asked for!

smiley popcorn

 


Karmic justice smacks Harry Reid in the face

August 9, 2010

Senator Harry Reid of Nevada, Majority Leader of the United States Senate, spent roughly a year shoving nationalized health care down the throats of a nation that clearly did not want it, disregarding both the People’s wishes and the harmful effects it will have on the country.

Thus we savor the irony and schadenfreude tonight as we read that Senator Reid (D-Bitter Old Man) has suddenly discovered that he doesn’t like the health care bill he fought so hard to enact:

John Graham of the Pacific Research Institute details a few fun facts in this video about HealthCare.gov, but the one that sticks out is this, a letter from Majority Leader Harry Reid to HHS Sec. Kathleen Sebelius sent on July 21st. The letter seems to indicate that Reid has finally read the health care bill, and after discovering it hurts Nevada hospitals more than it helps them, is complaining to the administration. You can read the full Reid letter here:

  • In a July 21 letter to U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Service Kathleen Sebelius, the Senate Majority Leader complains that ObamaCare’s cuts to Medicare will “result in a net reduction in payment to Nevada’s hospitals when they are unable to absorb such a cut.” Furthermore, he questions the method used by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services to calculate the payments to hospitals, and is “very concerned about potential effects on beneficiary access if this regulation is finalized without adjustment.”

As Ben Domenech points out, what Reid is complaining about is the point of the whole danged bill! Half the costs of ObamaCare are (supposedly) paid for by cuts to Medicare. It was at the core of the bill, and yet it only now dawns on Harry that Nevada hospitals and patients will get the shaft?

We are truly lead by idiots, and November can’t come fast enough.

Meanwhile, consider donating to the woman who would like to replace him.


When even Sweden runs away from socialism

May 16, 2010

Here’s an interesting video from Reason.TV, in which Swedish economist Andreas Bergh talks about how Sweden owes its success not to social democracy, but lowered tax rates and deregulation. Of special interest is what he has to say about Sweden’s health care and educational systems. Washington, take note:


Barack Obama stars in “Talking Crap”

April 9, 2010

Andrew Klavan presents another episode of that thrilling series, “Talking Crap,” featuring none other than the Lightworker himself, Barack Obama. This time, it’s all about health care and taxes:


We’ll learn to love it over time, I’m sure

March 23, 2010

Now that Congress and the White House have finished spending over a year doing what’s good for us whether we want it or not, they’re sure to bask in public approval, right? Now that they’ve passed health-care reform and we can learn what’s in Santa’s bag Pandora’s box the bill, we’re all going to be grateful in the end, right?

Er… Maybe not.

A majority of Americans have a dim view of the sweeping health care bill passed by the House, saying it gives Washington too much clout and won’t do much to reduce their own health care costs or federal deficits, according to a new poll released Monday.

A CNN/Opinion Research Corporation poll found that 59 percent of those surveyed opposed the bill, and 39 percent favored it. All of the interviews were conducted before the House voted Sunday night, but the contents of the bill were widely known.

In addition, 56 percent said the bill gives the government too much involvement in health care; 28 percent said it gives the government the proper role and 16 percent said it leaves Washington with an inadequate role.

On the question of costs, 62 percent said the bill increases the amount of money they personally spend on health care; 21 percent said their costs would remain the same and 16 percent said they would decrease.

Note that this poll is from CNN, an organization not known for being critical or even objective about Obama and the progressive agenda.

I wonder how many Democrats will be holding townhall meetings to bask in the accolades of their grateful constituents over the Easter recess?

Yeah, me too.

UPDATE: We’re so happy with this bill that 49% of likely voters want their states to sue to stop it.


Levin: Expel Louise Slaughter from the House

March 12, 2010

For background, see the earlier post on Congresswoman Louise Slaughter’s efforts to find a way to pass the Senate version of ObamaCare without actually voting on it. Radio host Mark Levin is… well, “pissed off” is the only way to describe it and he calls for Slaughter’s expulsion from the House, even though he knows the effort will fail. Tito’s queued up the tape; here’s Levin:

Frankly, I agree with him. Even though she will never be expelled, the Republicans have to do this to make the public aware of just what a naked, unconstitutional power-grab is underway here. This isn’t just fudging a bit here and there to get past some parliamentary inconveniences. No, this is nothing less than usurpation on the part of the legislative majority and an act of tyranny. As Jim Geraghty observed this morning in his Morning Jolt newsletter:

Are they out of their minds? What, the town hall meetings of last summer were too genteel and conciliatory for House Democrats’ tastes? Trying some sort of stunt like this in order to pass a bill without actually making members vote for it — that’s the sort of thing that takes “armed insurrection” talk out of the realm of chat rooms. We’ve long suspected that the Constitution means nothing to our counterparts on the left, but the idea of working around the requirement that bills be passed by the House strikes a new and disturbing we’ve-lost-democracy note.

Levin in his rant claims that the Slaughter Rule violates Article 1, Section 7, Clause 2 of the US Constitution. For reference, here’s the clause in question:

Every Bill which shall have passed the House of Representatives and the Senate, shall, before it become a Law, be presented to the President of the United States; if he approve he shall sign it, but if not he shall return it, with his Objections to that House in which it shall have originated, who shall enter the Objections at large on their Journal, and proceed to reconsider it. If after such Reconsideration two thirds of that House shall agree to pass the Bill, it shall be sent, together with the Objections, to the other House, by which it shall likewise be reconsidered, and if approved by two thirds of that House, it shall become a Law. But in all such Cases the Votes of both Houses shall be determined by Yeas and Nays, and the Names of the Persons voting for and against the Bill shall be entered on the Journal of each House respectively. If any Bill shall not be returned by the President within ten Days (Sundays excepted) after it shall have been presented to him, the Same shall be a Law, in like Manner as if he had signed it, unless the Congress by their Adjournment prevent its Return, in which Case it shall not be a Law.

The highlighted portions are what I believe Levin has specifically in mind. A bill cannot be considered passed and ready for presentation to the President unless it has been voted on and the Yeas and Nays recorded in the House ledger with the name of each person voting and how they voted.

Can the Democrats be sued for false advertising for using the word “democratic” in their name?

(via Hot Air)


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)


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