Wednesday, August 05, 2009

By the Numbers: What the Healthcare Industry Paid for Each Congressman

The Center for Responsive Politics released a list of what each obstructing Congressman was paid by the Healthcare sector. It is spending a total of 1,400,000 PER DAY to destroy the Public Option--the only real chance of reform.

Primarily Republicans are the takers, of course, but several Democrats as well. The Dem leading the charge against it is Max Baucus, who gets millions from them himself. Most Congressmen are bought for under 500,000. This is money the healthcare sector takes from patients to fund the "con game" of our sleazy health care system alive so a select few can get well while another select few can make an obscene amount of money.

The list is as shocking as the statements these so-called representatives make. Hey Thune, if you hate the government paying for health care so much, are you going to drop your generous "socialized medicine" package the taxpayers give you Senators?

Keith Olbermann brought his A game for this one....everyone should watch:


  1. Not a big fan of how this guy assumes that ANYONE against Obama's healthcare reform must be owned by the healthcare industry. Many Americans believe we don't need to add this kind of debt to our already towering national and public debts.

    Now, if America were to end it's overseas empires (having troops in 130 different countries) we could begin to actually pay off our national debt caused largely by Bush, but never fear, it looks like Obama is well on his way to beating Bush's national debt increase.

    Americans cannot afford this kind of debt right now. Sure Obama says he's not planning on raising taxes, but that money will have to come from somewhere, and you better believe it's going to come from us.

  2. HOW much is it costing you now, Austin?

    A recent report by the New America Foundation's health-policy program estimates that the cost of doing nothing about health care, including poor health and shorter lifespan of the uninsured, is well above $200 billion a year and rising. That's enough to cover the uninsured and still have some left over for other public-health needs.

    Health-insurance inflation will continue to outpace wages; the average cost of an employer-sponsored insurance plan for a family would reach $24,000 in 2016, an 84 percent increase from today. At least half of U.S households would need to spend more than 45 percent of their income to pay for insurance -- while the coverage itself would be sparser.

    WHO is going to pay for THAT???

  3. It's going to rise either way. At least by it being privatized there will be some incentive for at least privately owned practices to have competitive rates.

  4. You are not making any sense, Austin.

    You negated my comment without any proof. I said, "if we do nothing, costs will skyrocket". You say, somehow, "we should do nothing, because they will skyrocket less". I cite a report, you pull out of your butt.

    1. many major insurance companies run what basically amounts to localized monopolies. there many be a lot of companies, but there may only be 1 or 2 in any given region. This reduces competition

    Profit-driven insurance companies, by definition, seek to "maximize profit." This includes minimizing service while maximizing what they charge. This is only made worse by the fact that many people feel like they have to buy insurance.

    A non-profit or government plan doesn't have this profit motive, which should result in better quality and/or lower cost to people. And the fact that it creates real competition between insurance companies helps even more.

  5. Austin, in 36 states there is a de facto monopoly where one carrier or two at most carry most of the policies.

    If you cannot get insured with them, you are out of luck. So how can the free market work when there is no competition?

    Rates are not competitive--there is no incentive for them to be because they are the ones controlling the market. Less care means more profit.

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  7. Let me ask you this. Have you read over HR 3200?

    There are a ridiculous number of questionable things in it, so I'm assuming either you don't support this particular bill or you haven't read it but support it without knowing enough about it, which of course would be idiotic. Well I have read over it and let me give you a few good examples of questionable things in it to give the government too much control over our medical decisions.

    The government decides what treatments and benefits you get. You do not get a choice.

    Coverage is 5,000 dollars annually for an individual, 10,000 for a family. This is well below the standard insurance policy and this is health care rationing. Under MediCare and MediCaid (both of which I hate) at least considerations are based on need.

    "The tax imposed under this section shall not be treated as tax." What kind of garbage is that?

    Hospitals will be monetarily penalized for whatever the government deems as preventable re-admissions.

    Every private insurer will have to conform to government rules to participate in a "Health Insurance Exchange". What this could boil down to could be the government regulating private insurers in to the ground so it becomes no longer viable to run an insurance business, leaving the public with NO options except the government "option" which would become mandatory.

    This bill isn't about giving people a government choice, it's making a choice for them and that's why this bill should NEVER be passed. It does, in no uncertain terms declare that it will be mandatory for all Americans to be insured via private insurers or government. You can not be uninsured if you want to be. That would be illegal.

    Additionally, the government will be setting prices and cannot be sued for price-fixing.

    Don't get me wrong, I think it would be GREAT for everyone, regardless of income, to be able to get quality treatment. But America doesn't have the infrastructure (or money) to do that, and this bill actually would prevent hospitals from expanding without the approval of "community input" (possible payoff for ACORN?).

    Before you go trying to dispute ANY of this, please read over HR 3200. I have researched and read the exact wording of the document as to insure I wasn't being misinformed about the bill.

    This bill is a complete waste of borrowed money which will be put on the taxpayer's shoulders. Also, once something like this is implemented, there will be virtually no way to repeal it. Think about the implications we're making for our children and their children. I don't know about you, but I want my children to make choices for themselves as to what kind of care they get. If they don't get an education and end up working for 8 bucks an hour at McDonald's and "can't afford" health care, it's not society's fault, it's their own fault. I wouldn't condone stealing from ANYONE (Yes, income tax is legalized theft) to pay for their medical bills.

  8. HERE is the link to the bill, which you did not read. You ranted without giving any citations:

    PS--House Bill Allows For Continuation Of Current Coverage. According to "The House bill allows for existing policies to be grandfathered in, so that people who currently have individual health insurance policies will not lose coverage." [, 7/22/09]

    Here's some other myths to debunk. Stop listening to glenn beck...

  9. "The government decides" ... huh? I don't even know where to start with this. It might be in reference to Section 122, "Essential Benefits Package Defined," in which case he's just wrong ... all that does is specify the minimum level of benefits that must provided by all qualified benefits plans. And it covers, well, pretty much everything you would expect health insurance to cover. Of course, insurers trying to gain market share might well choose to offer more benefits than are described in the law; nothing would prevent this.

    The 5,000/10,000 cap is on cost-sharing, not coverage. So he has it completely wrong; this is a cap on what your insurer can make you pay (through deductibles and copays), not on what the insurer pays. (Section 122 ... note this is under subsection (c), which is specifically and solely concerned with limits on cost-sharing)

    The full quote is "The tax imposed under this section shall not be treated as tax imposed by this chapter for purposes of determining the amount of any credit under this chapter or for purposes of section 55." (Section 59B) Yeah, it's kind of hard to parse, but it does make sense -- other parts of the chapter set forth various tax credits that are partially dependent on tax burden; obviously you shouldn't be able to claim this penalty (which is basically a fine for not having coverage) as part of your tax burden for such purposes. Right? I mean, if it did allow that, fiscal conservatives would be screaming about fraud and giant loopholes, and rightly so.

    The stuff about the health insurance exchange being used to drive insurers out of business is pure fearmongering. There is nothing at all to suggest this in the language of the bill. All that the Exchange does is set up a unified regulatory framework to replace the current dysfunctional patchwork. And seriously -- how likely is it that an industry that cheerfully shares millions of dollars per day with lawmakers will be regulated out of business? Even if it richly deserves that fate. Seriously.

  10. First off, Austin, You didn't read 1018 pages--and it's nohwere near final so please.

    Second, Requirements to sell insurance on the exchange are simple: Minimal coverage floor, community rating, no denial of pre-existing conditions, and no recissions.

    How that leads to "regulating private insurers into the ground" is beyond wingnuttery.

  11. Of course I didn't read every single page of the bill. And afterward, I did realize that the 5000/10000 thing was not total coverage.

    Here is the bottom line, why can't I be uninsured if I don't want to be? In this bill I will be forced to be insured.

    As far as the private insurers being driven out of business, you say that now, and for the moment the plan might be to let them in, but eventually the government won't want the competition, they will become greedy as they ALWAYS have done in the past and they will find ways to put private insurers out of business so everyone must have the government option.

    Glenn Beck? I don't watch that crap. I am NOT a Republican so don't lump me in with those jerks. I DID read several sections from HR 3200 at this link:

    Admittedly not all of my interpretations are completely accurate, and I AM giving a worst case scenario. But since when does our government deserve all this credit you guys are giving it do draft the end to our health care woes? The bill is vague in some areas that eventually would be exploited.

    We talk about how corrupt "big business" has been and letting the insurers run away with our money or letting people get away with this that and the other, but the thing is, our federal government is and has been for a LONG time guilty of the same crap. Why trust them now?

    I am posting a response on the more recent post to respond to issues it brings up specifically.

  12. How powerful do you think our government is? If you watched the clip you'd see how many of the Congressmen are in the tank for the Healthcare industry. They are pouring MILLIONS into the coffers of you really think their puppets will do anything to hurt them?

    They are a strong monopoly...I hope to God we get a public option that will force the industry to be reasonable, but I strongly doubt that will ever happen. we will get a watered down feel-good reform that will do absolutely nothing. Please quit acting like the big bad govt. will come in and make them do anything...quite the contrary.

  13. How powerful do I think our government is? FAR too powerful already, which is why I'm opposed to giving them any more.