Thursday, July 23, 2009

Healthcare Reform or Overhaul...Still No Plan

After listening to B-Rock Opompus on last night I had the sinking feeling that we have been here before. It all sounded too familiar. It all sounded like the pressure that B-Rock put on Congress and the American public for his stimulus plan.

Take these words from an op-ed piece that the president wrote on February 5, 2009:

"Because each day we wait to begin the work of turning our economy around, more people lose their jobs, their savings and their homes. And if nothing is done, this recession might linger for years. Our economy will lose 5 million more jobs. Unemployment will approach double digits. Our nation will sink deeper into a crisis that, at some point, we may not be able to reverse."

Now compare those words to these words uttered last night:

"So let me be clear: If we do not control these costs, we will not be able to control our deficit. If we do not reform health care, your premiums and out-of-pocket costs will continue to skyrocket. If we don't act, 14,000 Americans will continue to lose their health insurance every single day. These are the consequences of inaction. These are the stakes of the debate that we're having right now."

If any of you really listened to the president you all would have heard what I have been hearing from him since last August. Plenty of ideas and no true plan to get these ideas working. If you recall he once thought about taxing the benefits of the those wage earners who make over $350k annually but now has support for creating a surtax for those Americans who earn $1M annually.

When asked if he and Congress would abide by the same plan that he is proposing, Opompus made the mistake of telling Americans that he wanted them to have the same plan that Congress currently has. O.K. They pay about 25% of the premiums and the taxpayers pick up the rest of the tab. In short, the taxpayers will pay for the plan. The other problem with this is that members of Congress have no waiting period to enroll and they are offered a myriad of plans to choose from which are through private carriers and provide for no pre-existing conditions clauses. Plus Congress has its own doctors, nurses and technicians standing by. They don't even have to leave work to get a physical exam or x-rays. Unless we work in healthcare field we gotta go to the doctor's office.

What is wrong with this idea? First, the government subsidizing 75% of premiums already indicates that companies will choose to drop coverage for their employees and turn them over to the government plan because not many companies choose to pay 75% of their employee premiums without tax incentives. Secondly, no private insurer can compete with the government when it comes to the ability to impose taxes and penalities on the populace to keep their premiums low thus eliminating competition.

To further bolster the presidents take over of healtcare was hidden in his response to a question posed by Steve Koff, of the Cleveland Plain Dealer.

"But having a public plan out there that also shows that maybe if you take some of the profit motive out, maybe if you are reducing some of the administrative costs, that you can get an even better deal, that's going to incentivize the private sector to do even better."

He seeks to remove the profit motive from private health insurers. Then there will be no private health insurers if they cannot make a profit. No one will be in the business of assuming risk without rewards. I know that health care costs have continued to rise but so have the cost associated with the advancements in treatment. Companies and researchers that come up with new and innovative ways to fix our ailments have to be compensated for their research and development. I really don't think we can wait on Pakistan to come up with a new treatment for any new malady that exists. Most money is recouped in the early stages of use.

I don't hear an outcry about how much money Microsoft makes off of its suites of Office 2007 or Windows Vista software. They are still charging the same rate that they did when the products launched 3 years ago and by now I am sure that they have recouped all of their research and development costs for that product launch( and you can bet that Windows 7 will be launched with the same pricing structure). And take a look at the Apple iPod. The prices never really go down. You get some new features, first color, then video, then smaller size, then touch and wi-fi capabilities but the prices remains constant within a few dollars. But I digress.

As I mentioned earlier, the president is full of ideas and no plans. His ideas are disguised as plans but if you examine closely you will see that there is no substance to grab hold to. Contrary to what he says, B-Rock wants to nationalize healthcare. He wants a complete overhaul of our healthcare system without looking to see what is broken and needs fixing. If my car were to run out of gas while driving; I would not rebuild the engine to fix the problem. I would call the motor club to bring me gasoline or tow me to a gas station. Let's remind our elected knuckleheads in Congress that overhaul means tearing down to rebuild. Do we need to rebuild or just fix what is broken and remove what is not working?

These are my words! Please post yours!

Monday, July 20, 2009

Obama Getting Snubbed by FOX Again...

President B-Rock Opompus is so in love with himself and his voice that for the fourth time in his six months in office he is appearing on prime time television to read to us from his teleprompters.

This president keeps telling us that we are living in 'tough economic times' and these times also extend to businesses from large to small. Yet once again he finds it necessary to interrupt business as usual for television broadcasters by preempting a prime revenue time slot to deliver to the American people more of his dribble.

Broadcast networks have continued to see their revenues decline during this recession and would much rather dumb us down with their "piss-poor" programming versus delivering 'revenue negative' Obama dribble. FOX has once again decided to forgo this loss in revenue altogether while NBC only decided to carry this broadcast after the White House decided to change the start time to 8 p.m. If I were Obama I would find it disturbing that his favorite network, NBC, had to think about whether to carry his broadcast. CBS decided to carry the broadcast early on because it was already running repeats and probably won the lottery to lob the first softball question at a future presser. ABC had to move two of its silly shows to an hour later to make certain that they get a seat at the alter. FOX will refer you to its news channel for their coverage but will not lose money on this sputum.

So what could he possibly have to say to us this time? I predict he will try to sound like the late Billy Mays and pitch us of the merits of his trillion dollar Obamacare plan. On how we must act quickly to head off a crisis (sounding like the stimulus speech in January). Using snake oil salesman tactics along with the demeanor of a used car salesman he will go on to tell us about the failing state of the economy but how his 'stick-it-to-us package' is creating and saving jobs even though less than 10% has been spent. He will tell us that he does not want the 'guberment' to run the automotive industry but will sell us on the speed in which both automotive companies have emerged from bankruptcy. How his policies helped to create a stronger automotive industry and saved jobs.

After his last prime time broadcast there was a major drop in viewers watching the president address the people. I can't wait for the viewer numbers after this fiasco.

These are my words. Please post yours!