Obamacare

Obamacare Is Still Struggling. So Why Are Democrats Winning the Health Care Argument?

The GOP’s decadeslong refusal to offer a compelling health care alternative has given Democrats the political upper hand.

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Looked at one way, the politics of Obamacare have barely changed in 10 years: The law is more popular now than it was under President Barack Obama, but even supporters still view it as flawed and fragmented, a placeholder more than a permanent solution. If anything, the COVID-19 pandemic has brought the law's defects to the fore, showing it to be expensive and unreliable, hobbled by intractable political arguments and poor drafting. Which is why mainline Democrats have emphasized familiar fixes—new legislation and proposals that would expand the law's reach, at considerable cost, offering subsidies to more people, and adding a new government-run insurance plan to the mix, an idea long favored by progressives but stripped from the original legislation. 

Republicans, meanwhile, are still fighting the law in court, with the White House backing a Texas-led challenge to a law the administration would normally be expected to defend. When the Trump administration asked the Supreme Court last week to strike down the entire law, the move made headlines, but not waves, because the argument it made was largely the same as the one it had proffered a year before, when it made the same request of a lower court

Perhaps the most striking point of continuity in the debate is the Republican insistence that a replacement of some sort will be ready should a court strike Obamacare down—and the concurrent refusal to say precisely what that replacement will be. Although Republicans in Congress and their allies have put forth any number of plans over the years, the party has never really rallied around a single idea or made a concerted effort to sell a plan to the public. One of the notable aspects of the GOP's 2017 repeal effort was its opacity, not only to the public but to Republican legislators, many of whom could not or would not explain how their proposed replacements were supposed to work. President Donald Trump himself has repeatedly promised that a cheaper, better Republican plan would be forthcoming, but has not specified what the plan will be.

That same sort of rhetorical slipperiness continues even now. Just last month, Trump declared, in his typically mushy-mouthed way, that "what we want to do is terminate it [Obamacare] and give health care. We'll have great health care," he said, "including preexisting conditions." Yet when CNN's Jake Tapper interviewed Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar last week, Azar dodged questions about the particulars. At first, Azar said the forthcoming GOP plan would cover preexisting conditions. When Tapper pointed out that the GOP's 2017 legislation softened preexisting conditions rules, Azar responded, "Well, Jake, you actually haven't seen what we would do, working with Congress, so you don't know what our preexisting conditions protections would look like." 

Azar was offering a model Republican health care dodge: First, insist the GOP will have a plan, then respond to criticism of previous plans by saying that the new plan is still in development, and therefore can't be criticized. The benefit of this approach is not only that it repels attacks, but that it also avoids the need for an affirmative defense of any specific policy. Just as you cannot attack a plan that does not yet exist, neither do you need to make a case for its virtues. 

Instead of making an extended public case for their own policies and attempting to win the public to their side, Republicans have largely chosen to fight through the courts and, under Trump, through administrative tweaks to Obamacare. Indeed, the closest Trump has come to defending his own health care policy is to argue that his administration has been a better steward of Obamacare than his predecessor, saying in May, "We've run it very well. And we've made it barely acceptable." There's some merit to this notion, but "I managed Obamacare better than Obama did" is hardly a case for an alternative, or for overturning the current law.  

I would say that Republicans have largely given up on arguing in favor of their health care policy ideas, but it's probably more accurate to say they never really started. Going back as far as the Clinton health care proposal in the 1990s, the party's focus has been on being the opposition rather than on developing a substantive alternative, on defending the status quo rather than championing a truly different path. 

As a short-term tactic, this has often proven effective. But as a long-term strategy, it leaves much to be desired, because it provides no off-ramp when the public believes the status quo has failed. And in the decade since the passage of Obamacare, that's roughly what has happened, as America's tangled, expensive mess of federal, state, and private health care programs have saddled Americans with underwhelming results, bureaucratic headaches, and billing and pricing practices that manage to be both inscrutable and unaffordable

Many of the system's problems are rooted in pre-Obamacare policies—the World War II-era decision to tie health insurance to employment through tax policy, the poorly designed payment systems adopted by Medicare, the joint federal-state funding mechanism for Medicaid. But by embracing the status quo, whether implicitly or explicitly, elected Republicans have often served more as defenders of this system and its flaws than as reformers. (Notably, one of the chief Republican arguments against Obamacare was that it would cut spending from Medicare.)   

Which is why Republican voters are, if anything, embracing Obamacare, voting to expand its reach in red states, even as the party's elected representatives continue to try to tear it down. And it's why Democrats are more trusted on the issue and have effectively used it to turn swing voters at the ballot box. Indeed, some Republicans even seem to be aware of this: After they lost control of the House in the 2018 midterm election, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy privately told other Republicans that the GOP's push to end parts of Obamacare was likely to blame. 

Yet the essential dynamic, in which Democrats push greater expansion while Republicans promise to offer some unspecified alternative (details to be determined), has persisted. And in the long run, that has probably given Democrats the upper hand. 

Which is why what appears to be political stagnation may be better understood as a slow and inexorable advance, in which Obamacare becomes more popular, the addition of a government-run public option becomes a mainline position rather than a progressive outlier, and the Democrats' left flank moves on to more radical proposals like Medicare for All. That the Democratic argument is essentially a case for doubling down on the policy flaws that have plagued U.S. health care for decades, pushing government financing and bureaucratic influence into ever more parts of the medical system, may not matter all that much, simply because it is an effort, however flawed, to convince people there's a better way. And in the court of public opinion, a bad argument wins over no argument just about every time. 

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  1. Democrats are winning for two reasons:

    1) GOP has no ideas.
    2) Dems yell louder and longer and the GOP hasn’t got the spine to fight back.

    1. 2 is irrelevant when 1 exists

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      2. But it’s still true.

        1. OK.

          Dems are winning for two reasons:
          1. GOP has no ideas
          2. Water is wet.

          Assume the GOP starts yelling louder and longer – about nothing. And then shows the spine to fight – about nothing. You think that’s remotely the key to ‘winning’ – nothing?

      3. I agree that with the Republicans clearly not interested in creating this own plan and putting it up to a vote, people are rightly worried what will happen to them with ACA is canceled. It’s just completely obvious that you have to have an alternative to be credible and try to cancel it.

    2. “1) GOP has no ideas.”

      Gee, how about take responsibility for yourself.
      I know lefty shits oppose that; hell, getting other people to pay for what they want is really neat!
      Until you run out of other people’s money.

      1. A lot of people were able to do that until they passed health care and premiums tripled. Now a lot of people can no longer afford health insurance without ‘government” help.

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      2. Says a guy – on Medicare

        1. “Says a guy – on Medicare”

          Says a cowardly piece of lefty shit.
          Hint: My insurance is paid by ME and has been for 40 years. The medicare I have is required by that insurance.
          You are one slimy, smelly lying piece of shit.

      3. Except we now have a medical system (it’s not “health care” – health care is something you do for yourself through diet, exercise, proper sleep, etc.) that has absolutely ZERO in the way of price discovery…to the benefit of Big Pharma, Big Insurance, and Big Medical. And then they turn around and pay off Big Congress (both parties) to keep it that way.

        I thought Libertarians were in favor of free markets? There is absolutely nothing free market about the US medical system.

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    4. The Dems won this debade once it got framed as a discussion of what the gov’t should do about it, since that pre-supposes that gov’t should be the “solution” in some form

      If the primary issue could have been made a question of which ways gov’t could stop being part of the problem first (such as stopping the FDA from ensuring at least temporary monopolies in production of off-patent drugs, thereby enabling companies to jack up prices at will), someone other than the left might have stood a chance.

  2. The Supreme Court just upheld Trump’s religious exemption to Obama’s contraception mandate.

    I’m not a Catholic, but requiring nuns to finance the fornication of their employees was a sin.

    1. Those who like that ruling — and the special snowflake provision — enjoy it while they can . . . for roughly six months.

      After that, we’ll dismantle the provision of public funds to schools that suppress science to flatter superstition, warp history to serve dogma, and generally teach nonsense to slack-jaws.

      Trump is more than 15 points underwater at 538 today. He seems positioned to dip below 40 percent approval this week. RealClearPolitics has Trump down at least 5 points in each of its seven “battleground” states. If Trump loses, a Democratic Senate seems likely.

      Those who tied their causes to Trump and the Republicans — gun absolutists, anti-abortion absolutists, proponents of limitless religious privilege, anti-immigration authoritarians, public school opponents, gay-bashers — seem destined to go down with the ship of bigotry, backwardness, and old-timey superstition.

      1. Yeah, I can’t wait to hear Joe Biden come out and promise Catholic voters that he’s planning to force nuns to finance the fornication of their employees again. That’ll help him with the swing vote in Michigan, Ohio, and Wisconsin, I’m sure!

        Even you you don’t think Biden will run on that platform, do you? You just think, like Obama, he won’t talk about it and inflict it on Catholics when they least suspect it, right? This is something you want to do because it’s unpopular–not something you think Biden will do because it’s popular and will bring out the swing vote.

        1. The fact is most Catholic voters are also fornicators and regularly use birth control. Check the families coming from Sunday Mass, notice that most families have a few well spaced children. The Little Sisters of the Poor were cover for other groups, none of which will vote for Joe Biden anyway. Joe has very little to lose here.

          1. Yeah, everyone but Jesus has sinned–except Mary, I guess, if you’re a Catholic.

            I remain unconvinced that forcing nuns to finance the fornication of their employees is popular with Catholics–regardless of whether Catholics also fornicate and use birth control.

            1. The Catholic Church is consolidating and closing churches, schools, and other facilities yearly. It has been revealed to be a comprehensively corrupt institution.

              This — the continuing advance of reason, science, transparency, tolerance, education, and modernity — is American progress. “Catholic concerns” are a diminishing point in America.

              1. “The Catholic Church is consolidating and closing churches, schools, and other facilities yearly. It has been revealed to be a comprehensively corrupt institution.”

                Asshole bigot:
                ‘Hey, look over there!’

              2. Corrupt institution.

                As opposed to, say, the DOE and Congress?

                We’re not advancing on ‘reason and science’. We’re regressing.

                We just bask in the after glow of a once mighty civilization.

                Now we have the likes of dummies like you sprouting off stupidities.

                And the Catholic Church was the preserver of literature and science for centuries.

                The progressive left dismantle and deconstruct.

      2. After that, we’ll dismantle the provision of public funds to schools that suppress science to flatter superstition, warp history to serve dogma, and generally teach nonsense to slack-jaws.

        So…No green new deal, then?

      3. “…enjoy it while they can . . . for roughly six months…”

        Asshole bigot here is hoping Jeff Dunham will prop Biden on his knee in the hopes enough idiots like asshole bigot think he’s sentient.

        1. I’d vote for any of Jeff Dunham’s puppets before I voted for Biden.

      4. Don’t you have a baby to go ‘dismantle’ at your Planned Parenthood shift?

      5. I look forward to hearing that your head has exploded… in roughly six months.

      6. Another Truism: ” Donald Trump will never win election as President of the US”.

  3. So Why Are Democrats Winning the Health Care Argument?

    They aren’t, Covid hysteria is.

    Now could we get some writers who are actual Libertarians please? So we don’t have to listen to idiot shills pretend that personal responsibility isn’t an option.

    1. At least writers who do not criticize politicians for not promising a non-solution to a not government responsibility.

  4. I would say the Republicans view health care as a commodity. You are entitle to the amount of the commodity you can or will pay for. The problem is that Republicans are to cowardly to argue this view and instead hide behind some theoretical plan they have for health care. If Republican believe their view correct then argue for it or get out of the way for people who will argue for what they believe healthcare should be.

    1. Healthcare is a right. Like any other right, it doesn’t force an obligation on another, and you can’t force others to pay for it.

      1. Do you work for wages? Is there a Medicare deduction on the paystub?

        You are being forced to pay for others health insurance. Deal with it.

        1. Uh huh. Now do guns.

        2. “…You are being forced to pay for others health insurance. Deal with it…”

          Stuff it up your ass, you pathetic piece of lefty shit.

      2. Health care is not a right. In industrial first world countries it is a government service. Much like roads, schools, fire department and a number of other things. These are paid by taxes. Everyone has some government services they like and others they don’t. You still have an obligation to pay taxes.

        1. It’s a right that’s infringed on.

        2. “… You still have an obligation to pay taxes.”

          Stuff it up your ass, you pathetic piece of lefty shit.

        3. and you obviously have no problem robbing your neighbors as long as you command people with guns to go and confiscate their wealth for your benefit. You are an evil POS, if you want a service pay for it your damn self, stop robbing others.

      3. Medical care is NOT a right. Because if I am a medical provider, then you are forcing me to provide my services, whether I want to or not. An actual right confers no imposition on another person.

    2. Yep, that’s why we never hear of their plan.

      1. Here’s the plan, you steaming pile of lefty shit:
        Pay for what you want or need.

    3. Sometimes dishonesty is the best policy.

      If the polity is mostly against you on such a fundamental point as this, you should try to confuse them as much and as long as possible. And I applaud that effort.

  5. Suderman saying republicans need an alternative is the same as saying government needs to be involved only differently.
    I want my waiver and freedom to buy whatever insurance coverage I want. No interference from government other than a legal system for enforce the purchase contract if necessary.

    1. That’s not as simple as it seems. What about the employer contribution? Must employers be forced to give employees a “raise” if they opt out of health insurance through their work? Currently you don’t pay taxes on health insurance premiums right there on your paycheck. How would that work if you’re buying it out of pocket? Insurance companies are licensed state by state, and if you have a problem you contact your state government. If you buy insurance across state lines, who will help you? Your state has no power in another state, and the government in another state will probably tell you to pound sand since you’re not a resident. That’s just off the top of my head, I’m sure there are plenty more complications.

      1. Dirt simple. Outlaw employer paid “benefits”. “period”
        Require health care providers to charge everyone the same fee for the same service.
        Require insurance companies to charge the same premium for the same coverage.
        Everyone gets their entire pay, and buys the ‘benefits’ they want.
        No more HR saying “you have $25,000 in benefits” when that includes childcare for childless employees and tuition reimbursement for employees already educated, etc.

        1. Outlaw, require, outlaw, require… Seems like a lot of force and a lot of design. Why not just get government out of the way? Most of what you mention are a direct cause of government policy. You think more policy will fix it?

        2. Dirt stupid right there.

        3. Or, and here’s a crazy idea, make it so ALL insurance is tax deductible.

          1. MADNESS!

            Actually, how about we just eliminate taxes, and let people pay voluntarily for the services they value?

            1. That was the first government intervention that screwed up health insurance. End it. Insurance is simply a commodity to be bought by individuals. Let many companies compete for price, service, coverage options and let the individual make the appropriate choiec for themselves.

      2. That was the first government intervention that screwed up health insurance. End it. Insurance is simply a commodity to be bought by individuals. Let many companies compete for price, service, coverage options and let the individual make the appropriate choiec for themselves.

  6. >>The law is more popular now than it was under President Barack Obama

    zero people believe this. maybe Tony

    1. I think he may be right about that–with a huge amount of qualifications.

      The only parts of the ACA that remain in place are the parts that are popular, so of course the law is more popular now than it was under Obama–because President Trump and the courts have rid us of the law’s most unpopular provisions.

      There is no more individual mandate, but there was during the Obama administration, so–in that sense–the law is more popular now than it was under Obama.

      The fact is that preexisting conditions exclusion is widely popular. If that’s all that’s left of the ACA, then, yeah, the ACA is more popular now than ever. Try to reimplement all those massively unpopular provisions, and it’ll become wildly unpopular again for all the same reasons it was unpopular when Obama was in office.

      1. >>The fact is that preexisting conditions exclusion is widely popular.

        I guess if you can ignore the impossibility of being insured for something that already took place yes … “free money!” after you’ve retired is a banner plan too

        1. Yeah, well, whether it should be popular is another question entirely, but it was the most popular provision of the ACA and remains so.

          1. consistently providing facts I was unaware of … gracias.

          2. Lol, nope. Subsidies and Medicaid expansion are the most popular parts of the ACA. Least popular is high premiums for unsubsidized Republicans!! F them anyway!!

            1. I see, as a lefty shit, you too are incapable of posting without lying.
              Fuck off and die, slaver.

              1. Google “Oscar Health” dumbass.

                1. Sebastian Cremmington
                  July.8.2020 at 10:36 pm
                  ‘Google “Oscar Health” dumbass.”

                  Stuff it up your ass, fuck off and die, lefty shit.

                  1. You are a delight!!

      2. There are a large number of items in the ACA that are popular and as time has past people see the value of these items. Popular items include:
        – Coverage of preexisting conditions
        – Medicaid expansion
        – Coverage of young people (under 26) on parents plan
        – Coverage for preventive healthcare
        – Elimination of lifetime limits.
        – Health care market place

        I would even disagree that the mandate is all that unpopular. It was a pretty small issue. What has made the ACA popular is that people see the value of what they are getting.

        1. “There are a large number of items in the ACA that are popular and as time has past people see the value of these items. Popular items include:
          – Coverage of preexisting conditions
          – Medicaid expansion
          – Coverage of young people (under 26) on parents plan
          – Coverage for preventive healthcare
          – Elimination of lifetime limits.
          – Health care market place…”

          Yeah, ‘free shit’ is always popular with adolescents.

  7. Government is just supporting the AMA monopoly on healthcare.

  8. Taking a stand on a plan involves risk. It’s like taking a stand on the Dreamers. The Republicans in Congress don’t want to vote on the Dreamers if they don’t need to–and the Supreme Court leaving DACA in limbo through this election means that they don’t need to vote on a law to protect the Dreamers from deportation. Either way they voted on that issue, it would divide their constituency. Why would they want to divide their constituency when they can simply leave it as a non-issue for after the upcoming election?

    It’s the same way with healthcare. The individual mandate was unpopular. Rising premiums were unpopular. Losing your doctor and your plan was unpopular. The only thing about it that was genuinely popular was the provision on preexisting conditions, and that provision remains intact. If the Democrats wish to divide the swing vote against them by taking a stand on a plan, that’s their problem. Everybody still remembers what happened the last time they decided to fix our healthcare problem.

    The Republicans are wise not to advance a specific plan like Joe Biden is smart to hide in his basement while the news media and the other Democrats go nuts defending the progressive assault on law enforcement, our cultural icons, and good sense. If he doesn’t need to take a stand on that stuff, why would he? It’s just going to divide people ahead of an election. These are wedge issues. You don’t spike your own election by creating wedge issues to divide your own support. You create wedge issues to divide your opponent’s constituency.

    1. I think you mean the DNC is smart to have Biden hide in his basement.

      Biden isn’t even sure whose house he is in…

      1. Pretty sure Dunham is now on the payroll as ‘supporter’.

  9. Medicare for All is only a radical idea only in the US. The rest of the developed world has universal health care and the data shows clearly that it costs less, has better health outcomes, and is popular. While none of the systems is perfect, they are better then what we have and the US public is realizing it. We could survey what other countries are doing and crate our health care system based on the best parts that we see.

    1. If restricting the choices of consumers so that they’re ALL circumscribed by CMS isn’t a radical proposition elsewhere in the developed world, it should be.

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Centers_for_Medicare_%26_Medicaid_Services

      The British have restrictions on free speech and gun ownership that aren’t especially controversial over there either, but so what? Maybe they should care more about their individual right to make choices for themselves.

    2. “…and is popular.”

      Besides using this reason to prop up universal healthcare as a political tool, does popularity matter?

      So we’ve seen it argued how the government response to Covid-19 has been fucked up, and yet we want to put government in charge of all of healthcare? Let me guess, we just need the right people in charge, and they’ll get it right. Top. Men.

      1. Having to give up your doctor because of ObamaCare may have been unpopular–because of the Koch brothers–but being assigned a doctor by Medicare will be completely different.

        I bet they even let us pick from a list of doctors in our area!

        1. Actually, I have to pick from a list of doctors 20 miles away, because the damn website thinks the entire county lives at the main post office. I live at the other end of the county; I can literally throw a rock (purely as a peaceful protester) into the next county from the entrance to the neighborhood. But when I ask for doctors, they are all listed as “within 5 miles” even though they are 20 – 25 miles up a toll road.

          1. I see you live in North Dallas too, lol.

      2. Quite the opposite, there is strong evidence that our patchwork health care system has made Covid worse. Universal healthcare would be better during a pandemic.

        1. Like in Italy?

          1. worked perfect. all the weak and old are dead.

            1. So we have a sociopath here

              1. i just want AC Milan to win Serie A i don’t care how it happens.

              2. “So we have a sociopath here”

                As soon as you showed up.

          2. Italy can be an example of a model not to follow. Many other countries did just fine and we should look at them.

            1. “Italy can be an example of a model not to follow. Many other countries did just fine and we should look at them.”

              I see your stupidity ate your cites.

          3. Italy’s COVID deaths had nothing to do with their healthcare system. More to do with their median age and how the deaths were attributed to COVID.

            1. Not to mention a huge number of Chinese workers toiling away on ‘belt and road’ projects. Purely by coincidence, the province hardest hit had the largest pool of workers traveling to and from the mother country.

          4. Italy is the LEAST ‘national’ medical system in the OECD. Including the US. And in large part that is because Lombardy, the richest province, wanted to do its own thing and not be tied down to some cheap-ass bullshit mandated by a bunch of peasants in the south of Italy that they would be expected to pay for. And it has done just that. A system that is world-class in cardiology and oncology. That turns to JCI (a US-based medical accreditation) to benchmark itself not to any Italian system. That attracts well over 50% of all medical/pharma/biotech companies in Italy. One of the reasons, test kits ramped up so slowly here is because – guess where all the swabs come from? And for those two specialties, Lombardy is at or near the top for medical tourism (esp for the non-standard stuff where lower price is less important)

            Too bad for Lombardy this covid19 was a contagious respiratory disease rather than something that is profitable to treat and more dependent on public health to contain. It wasn’t ‘Italy’ that failed. It was mostly Lombardy. 16% of the population, 37% of the cases, 48% of the deaths. While sucking on the tit of those peasants in the south of Italy. Outside the Po Valley (Lombardy and other wanna-be-Lombardies of the ‘Northern League’), Italy results are almost as good as Germany.

            1. Oh – and this doesn’t mean ‘centralization’ is a solution. Germany may also be less centralized than the US – or close at least. And it clearly has done the best job (in Europe) of at least controlling the death rate though not the contagion.

            2. I legit didn’t know that and was under the impression that all of Europe had some iteration of single payer.

              1. No – I was in the Veneto region a few years ago – you can get an MRI for 135 Euros – not via the national healthcare system, but private pay. The same MRI here is $2,000+. What bullshit.

                Obviously the people who own the MRI place in Bassano del Grappa are making money at that price.

                But that is what removing price discovery from your medical system does…and in the USA we have none.

            3. “…While sucking on the tit of those peasants in the south of Italy. Outside the Po Valley (Lombardy and other wanna-be-Lombardies of the ‘Northern League’), Italy results are almost as good as Germany.”
              Wonder if that has to do with, oh, importing the disease?
              https://www.bing.com/images/search?view=detailV2&ccid=GmjZ9lXF&id=5426F22E0180FEA75BD1171E80F578BCD1ED8EC1&thid=OIP.GmjZ9lXF9PkufurHYHZHgAHaIv&mediaurl=https%3a%2f%2fupload.wikimedia.org%2fwikipedia%2fcommons%2fthumb%2ff%2ffc%2fItaly%252C_foreign_residents_as_a_percentage_of_the_total_population%252C_2011.svg%2f868px-Italy%252C_foreign_residents_as_a_percentage_of_the_total_population%252C_2011.svg.png&exph=1024&expw=868&q=welfare+distribution+in+italy%2c+north%2fsouth&simid=607996339089047764&ck=2197CC0F927F301A263AB22A8DE542D1&selectedIndex=4
              And then the cite for the north of Italy ‘sucking on the tit’ of Mezzo Giorno seems to have gone missing, you cowardly piece of lefty shit.

        2. Which evidence is that?

      3. Republican government fcked up Covid response

        When are people going to realize Republicans run on saying government is a failure then get elected to prove it.

        1. That damn republican governor and mayor of New York and NYC. Oh wait….

          1. Ditto CA and SF.

            GenoS is pretty fucking stupid.

    3. VA care for all? No thanks.

      1. There is no reason that we would design a system that is like the current VA model.

        1. Other than the fact that the feds did exactly that?

      2. What, you don’t want an unaccountable government agency making decisions about what healthcare options are available for you?

        This is the way they already do things with Medicare.

        “Medicare pays for medical items and services that are “reasonable and necessary” or “appropriate” for a variety of purposes.[1] By statute, Medicare may only pay for items and services that are “reasonable and necessary for the diagnosis or treatment of illness or injury or to improve the functioning of a malformed body member”, unless there is another statutory authorization for payment.[2]

        Medicare has a number of policies that describe coverage criteria, including National coverage determinations (NCDs) and Local Coverage Determinations (LCDs),[3] formerly known as Local Medical Review Policies (LMRP).[note 1]”

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Medical_necessity

        The fact is that there’s only so much equipment, trained personnel, and money to go around, so they can’t give everybody everything they want. If they give a 78 year old man hip replacement surgery instead of a wheelchair, that means that a 19 year old pregnant woman isn’t getting prenatal care.

        In a capitalist system, these services are rationed by the ability and willingness of consumers to pay market prices–maybe in the form of insurance premiums. Entrepreneurs compete on price to offer more and more services to people on the lower end of the income scale. In a socialist system, the services and resources are rationed according to other criteria–like who is or isn’t politically powerful at the time.

        The market system lets people make choices for themselves.

        With Medicare for All, your choices are made for you by CMS, and most people don’t even know what CMS is–much less how it decides whether you qualify for hip replacement surgery or a wheelchair. In addition to all the other observations about how and why market systems are better than socialism, I also add that I’d rather make choices for myself about my own quality of life and how much I’m willing to pay than have my choices made for me and paid for by someone else.

        Autonomy is the key to happiness, and Medicare for All sells our autonomy short. Fuck that noise.

        1. Single payer would be accountable to Congress, which is better then the unaccountable private plans. Also when we create single payer, we can fix what we don’t like about current Medicare and Medicaid. Bashing single payer because you have issues with Medicare is a straw man argument.

          1. Right; I forgot that all the ACA plans are unaccountable.
            If only the plan benefits, coverages, and prices were defined by the federal government, like all good fascist countries.
            Oh, wait a minute – – – – – – – – – – – –

          2. “Single payer would be accountable to Congress, which is better then the unaccountable private plans.”

            A government bureaucracy would be more responsive to Congress than profit seeking companies are to market forces?

            This is delusional.

            P.S. Market forces are people making choices.

          3. “…which is better then the unaccountable private plans…”

            Are you that stupid, or are you hoping we’ll believe your lies?

            1. I’m going with “that stupid”.

              1. Well, on further reflection, I’ll go with “both”.
                Who ever posts at MG is certainly stupid, and may well be stupid enough to hope *we* are as stupid as s/he is.

        2. The free market would also be just fine with letting poor people die and suffer from treatable illnesses. That is not considered acceptable in a civilized society.

          1. That would make more sense if market forces hadn’t made formerly expensive treatments like laser eye surgery cheaper and cheaper and available to more and more people–without any “support” from government. Are you aware that even poorer people can now afford smart phones and gigantic flat TV screens, too? That isn’t because of Medicaid either.

            1. A smart phone is a few hundred dollars every few years, and $40 per month. A TV is like $300. Medical coverage is about $1000 per month at the minimum.

              1. The only way to reduce cost when demand is high is to increase supply.

                Funny I never see you progressives argue for letting more people become doctors/nurses, reducing burdensome licensing requirements, or letting people who were doctors in their home countries practice here.

                Nope, the answer is always just more government spending, all while ignoring the actual numbers.

              2. These things are not unrelated. It’s because government regulates the hell out of the latter, and barely regulates the former.

                A TV was like $1000 a few decades ago (in inflation-adjusted dollars). They’ve gotten *cheaper* over time for better technology. Cell phone costs have also come down for much better technology.

                Currently, I can buy a pretty awesome computer for under $1000. A similar quality (relative to technology available) computer would have cost $2-3000 in 2000, and $5000 or more in 1990, and those are figures *unadjusted for inflation*. Again, government pretty much doesn’t regulate computers.

                Don’t you find it odd that the only things which get more expensive over time are things government regulates the hell out of?

                1. No, she doesn’t.

              3. “Medical coverage is about $1000 per month at the minimum.”

                That’s because private insurers get gouged for all the money the government underpays for Medicaid and Medicare.

                https://tinyurl.com/n5ulftk

                Account for the facts on this chart, and you’ll be more knowledgeable than 99% of your fellow Americans.

                If you can’t account for the facts on this chart, then you don’t know what you’re talking about.

                1. P.S. If Medicare and Medicaid are the reasons why hospitals gouge private insurers for 150% of the cost, expanding Medicare isn’t likely to solve that problem. It will only make matters worse.

                  Has switching from a privately funded option to a government funded option ever ended in lower costs? I’d love to see an example of that. I dare you to find one.

              4. “Medical coverage is about $1000 per month at the minimum.”

                Stupid or just flat lying?

                1. Might be in New York City or for a family of five.

                  It varies not only from state to state but also from different parts of the same town. The variance is largely a function of demographics–the larger percentage of people there are on Medicaid in your area, the higher your insurance premiums will be.

                  If they start publishing prices, we’ll see those wild variations, and we’ll see that they correlate to the level of Medicaid participation. You can’t give half of your patients 75% off, not gouge paying customers for the difference, and break even.

                2. Everyone who I know who pays for their own plan because they are self-employed is coughing up between $15K to over $20K with pretty high deductibles. Even the crap Obamacare I am on, with its $8,150 deductible is $660 a month without the subsidy.

                  That said, next year I will pay whatever it takes to get “real” insurance. ACA cost me access to all my docs, and I am essentially left paying for everything out of pocket. I only got it because I lost my job in 2018, my COBRA ran out, and being over 60 I haven’t gotten any good employment – just barely scrape by crap.

                  So much for my “white privilege”.

                  1. We pay out of pocket for everything and have the ACA plan as an “oh shit” backup.

              5. “A smart phone is a few hundred dollars every few years, and $40 per month”

                I’m seeing a Samsung J7 (unlocked) for $113 on Amazon.

                You can get a year’s worth of unlimited long distance, unlimited text, unlimited 3G data, a nice monthly chunk of 4G data, all for $180 plus tax for a year of service on Mint mobile, where they resell plans off of the AT&T and T-Mobile networks.

                The reason it’s so cheap is because capitalism is awesome like that. It takes things that used to be luxuries and makes them available to more and more people for lower and lower costs. We don’t see much of that in the healthcare industry–because the government is so heavily involved.

          2. You’re a delusional moron that thinks all of the world’s problems can be solved with the wave of a magic government wand. You see the rioting in the streets across the country, that’s your compatriots demanding free shit for everything from everybody because that’s your civilized society in action.

    4. the data shows clearly that it costs less

      Sure, rationing, delays, doctors beholden to the state instead of their patients. Hard pass.

    5. As I’ve pointed out to Tony and shriek in the past: The US government already spends roughly the same percent of GDP (8.5%) as other first world countries. So that means they spend a shit ton of money not even covering half the population (around 130million). For comparison, the UK spent about 8% of their GDP to cover half as many people (68million)

      https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-42950587

      1. “cover”

      2. Well good thing the GOP has no ideas even about how to reform the portion that govt currently spends

        1. See my post below, reforming the portion the government spends has been mildly suggested, only to receive histrionic rebuttal of trying to kill old people.

          Holding the line isn’t entirely irrational.

        2. Why would I expect statist to have a plan to reduce the size, scope and power of the state?

    6. “Medicare for All is only a radical idea only in the US.”

      Yeah, and if the Euro’s had to pay for their defense, they might find requiring people to pay for their own medical care would make sense,
      Except to lefty shits like you.

    7. The only reason it costs other countries less is because the US pays for basically all the world’s research and development. They’re free-riding on our free market system.

  10. Because when you have a government that spends $5 trillion a year, it’s really hard to explain why it shouldn’t buy medicine.

  11. People like free stuff.
    Plenty of FIRE enthusiasts are retiring in their 30s from six-figure jobs and signing up for subsidized Obamacare. At least the taxpayers are helping the needy.

  12. There’s no need for an ‘alternate’ plan.

    Just kill the damn thing.

    Then start removing all the other health care regulations that exist.

    the best “plan” from the government is no plan.

    1. Dammit you beat me to it. The only plan should be to get government out of the health industry completely.

    2. “The curious task of economics is to demonstrate to men how little they really know about what they imagine they can design.”

      -Hayek

    3. It’s true because it’s simple.

      1. Good point. I mean, solutions must be so complicated that they cannot be understood. If something can be understood then it is simplistic and must be mocked. Only experts who deal in obfuscation can be trusted. Right, Tony?

        1. But it’s not simple, you just want it to be. Do we truly extricate government from involvement in personal choices and liberty when its policy is to tell people “If you’re born poor and sick, you can kindly fuck off and die”?

          1. Another very good point. Since there are no churches or charity organizations out there, nobody except government will help them. People certainly won’t form mutual aid societies on their own like they did before socialized medicine was introduced. The last thing we want is for government involvement that has directly caused prices for health care to rise astronomically to cease. Yep, more government is always the answer. Oh wait, that can’t be right. It’s too simple.

            1. If private charity were a realistic alternative, it would have already done the job. Sorry but this is one of the biggest hand waves in all of libertarianism.

              Also I’d rather have a simple and secular government-run healthcare program than have to depend on the kindness of whichever religious organization that lives down the street.

              1. If government could provide universal healthcare, it would have already done the job.

                Also I’d rather have a simple and secular government-run healthcare program compel my neighbors to pay for my healthcare under penalty of death at the hands of the government than have to depend on the kindness of whichever religious organization that lives down the street.

                ftfy

                1. But government has already proved it can do the job. In every single civilized country on earth save the US. Countries where private charity supplies a universal safety net? Let me count oh that was easy it’s zero.

                  1. Let me count the number of said countries where I would prefer to get medical care. Oh that was easy. It’s zero.

                    “The first lesson of economics is scarcity: there is never enough of anything to fully satisfy all those who want it. The first lesson of politics is to disregard the first lesson of economics.”
                    -Thomas Sowell

                    No matter what, medical care will be rationed. It can be rationed by ability to pay (which includes charity), or it can be rationed by government bureaucrats. The former can be flexible. If someone says no you can go to someone else. Not so much when government is in charge. Some government drone will make a first and final decision, and that’s that. You’re out of luck. I’d rather have options than have my life in the hands of Joe Government Worker.

                    1. Rationing healthcare to those who can afford it is generally considered a barbaric approach.

                    2. “Rationing healthcare to those who can afford it is generally considered a barbaric approach.”

                      Yeah, shitbag. Denying care until they die is a much better solution, right?

                    3. And:
                      “Rationing healthcare to those who can afford it is generally considered a barbaric approach.”

                      Put it another way:
                      EVERY country does exactly what you claim is barbaric. Most of them do so by the very deniable technique of simply not providing care and letting people die as they wait.
                      But it is done for exactly the same reason the world over: Once you make something “free”, there is never enough supply to meet demand, so everywhere, even more so where it’s “free”, it is rationed by your ability to pay.
                      Want not to die while you wait? How big is your wallet?
                      This is not a medical question, it is a simple economic truth and if lefty shits like you had been paying attention, you’d know that purple-unicorn has been eaten by the starving populations of socialist countries everywhere and always.
                      Fuck off and die, slaver.

                  2. “…But government has already proved it can do the job. In every single civilized country on earth save the US…”

                    Like lefty shits everywhere, Tony thinks that repeating a lie often enough makes is true.
                    Fuck off and die, slaver.

                    1. It would be funny how they avoid the actual numbers, if it wasn’t so fucking pathetic.

              2. It really says a lot about you that you’re such a miserable piece of shit you wouldn’t a) help your neighbor unless the government forced you and b) receive aid because your fascist and authoritarian behavior pushes people away from you.

                1. I’m not the one talking about charity. Charity is great, but it’s not the subject of this discussion. You want it to be so you can get out of the discussion altogether because you have no argument. That’s what is meant by a hand wave.

                  A taxpayer funded social safety net is not a charity. It’s a service we pay for. We do it via government when we want it to be universally and equitably available to people, just like education, the armed forces, and police. This isn’t hard to understand if you would make your priority a serious discussion about how to achieve universal healthcare instead of “Obama bad! I made a doodie!”

                  1. “I’m not the one talking about charity….”

                    Correct.
                    You’re the one spouting lefty lies.

                  2. If you get a good or service but did not pay its full cost than you absolutely received charity. That is easier to measure with education and health care, harder with military and police.

      2. I’m sure the magic government fairy will make it all very simple and easy.

        The US government already spends roughly the same percent of GDP (8.5%) as other first world countries. So that means they spend a shit ton of money not even covering half the population (around 130million). For comparison, the UK spent about 8% of their GDP to cover half as many people (68million)

        https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-42950587

    4. It is interesting that you can say this but Republican politicians will not say it. Instead they taught a plan that does not actually exist. And we all know that they are dishonest. Why not just run on what you believe, instead of trying to convince people you have a plan that you don’t really have?

      1. “…And we all know that they are dishonest…”

        Yeah, we need honest people who offer a plan which allows us to keep our doctor and get lower rates, right?

  13. far as the Clinton health care proposal in the 1990s, the party’s focus has been on being the opposition rather than on developing a substantive alternative, on defending the status quo rather than championing a truly different path.

    This is true… but only after a fashion. The Republicans, whatever their faults (and this is arguably one of those faults) have made their peace with government interventions in to the healthcare market. The position they’ve staked, weak as it might be is essentially “for the love of God, let’s not make it any worse”.

    The Democrats, on the other hand, have NOT made their peace with the current state of intervention and are hell bent on intervening longer, harder and uncut forever and ever into the future, amen. And, as we all know, with each intervention comes greater disasters, so I’m not going to give too much fault to the one weak tea movement that at least stands up and says, “Hang on a second” whenever a new, radical intervention is proposed.

    We know exactly how the media would react to a full-scale roll-back of interventions– which we can all safely say is what the GOP really wants. Again, your youth may betray you, Suderman, but perhaps you’ve forgotten Newt Gingrich’s ‘wither on the vine’ comment which was treated like it was an incantation from a satanic child-molestation cult leader.

    When any proposal to streamline the system and introduce market reforms are attacked in the press and *coughs* in the courts *coughs* merely holding the line is, in my opinion, understandable.

  14. People voted for Santa Claus. They believe whole heartedly that they are better off with more government intervention. Republicans can’t sell limited fiscally responsible government anymore. They can only try to limit the damage. Democrats thoroughly do not give a shit If the economy craters.

    1. The majority of all bankruptcies are due to medical costs. To the extent that healthcare access affected the macroeconomy, things were definitely worse before Obamacare, though Republican obsessions with maintaining fraudulent housing loan systems and eliminating all regulations on the financial sector are certainly much more relevant to whether the economy craters, as we have first-hand experience with.

      1. though Republican obsessions with maintaining fraudulent housing loan systems

        Sowell explains: “His powerful position on the House of Representatives’ Committee on Financial Services gave him leverage to force through legislation and policies which pressured banks and other lenders to grant mortgage loans to people who would not qualify under the standards which had long prevailed. … With the federal regulators leaning on banks to make more loans to people who did not meet traditional qualifications — the ‘underserved population’ in political Newspeak — and quotas being given to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to buy more of these riskier mortgages from the original lenders, critics pointed out the dangers in these pressures to meet arbitrary home ownership goals. But Barney Frank counter-attacked these critics.”

        Whom did Frank blame when the housing meltdown — and Freddie and Fannie’s role in it — became obvious even to Frank? “Right-wing Republicans,” he said.

        1. See you want to blame progressives being too generous to poor browns when the actual culprit was financial institutions exploiting poor browns. Fraudulent mortgage packages were the playthings of the private sector.

          Nobody gets totally off the hook, but you need to know that blaming it all on Freddie and Fannie–which were more regulated than the private actors and not actually that guilty of anything–is a tactic by the real culprits to get away with their crime.

          1. Alternately, you could just stop being a lying sack of shit who has no other argument than, “MUH POOR BROWN PPL”.

            1. “Reading is hard.”

              Particularly for fucking lefty ignoramuses like shitbag here.

        2. ….to get away with their crime and shift the blame to poor brown people, just to be dicks, and to stay on brand.

          1. What’s that? Shifting attention to “MUH BROWN PPL” so you don’t have to admit where blame is actually due?

            1. I think you ought to be pretty careful when you want to blame poor brown people for a global recession, especially when it’s not remotely true.

              1. “I think you ought to be pretty careful when you want to blame poor brown people for a global recession,…”

                Says the lefty shit who just did exactly that.

          2. It wasn’t poor brown people you fucking racist. It was the real 1%ers: the government class.

      2. “The majority of all bankruptcies are due to medical costs…”

        How horrible that people will go bankrupt for such a silly thing! Those people should go bankrupt for serious matters, like, oh, car payments!
        What a fucking ignoramus.

  15. Most Americans welcome Obamacare as another step along the path of national progress.

    What makes most clingers angry is that they recognize universal healthcare is inevitable in America, to the point at which Republicans aren’t even trying to develop an alternative.

    1. universal healthcare is inevitable in America

      And already available (excepting treatments held up in the FDA morass). Take out your wallet and pay for it.

      1. Universal policing to protect your claim to your property is also available on a mercenary basis. Stop asking me to pay for your rights, mooch.

        1. Lol Tony actually thinks people believe he pays taxes.

        2. You live in my township? Your property taxes pay for my police? Learn how things work.

    2. “ Most Americans welcome Obamacare as another step along the path of national progress.”

      As long as you ignore the record seat changes and votes from the vast majority who want the thing dead, you bitter little Obama clinger, you.

  16. Why should the GOP present “their plan”, when the policy decision should be “no government plan at all”?

  17. This is a case where the triangulation strategy worked out, if not in the merit of the policy, in terms of denying its opponents any room to argue. Obamacare, as is well known, was an approach to universality in healthcare dreamed up by conservative think tanks. The operating premise for both sides was that universality was the goal. And Republicans have to stick with it because “fuck the poors and their cancer” just doesn’t sell.

    So they cannot come up with a more conservative alternative to the most conservative approach that’s out there. And when stronger programs are passed, they can’t very well argue that things were better under Obamacare.

    1. “ Obamacare, as is well known, was an approach to universality in healthcare dreamed up by conservative think tanks.”

      And yet not one voted for it, which is why, 10 years later, you’re still shitting your pants, lying and screaming idiocies about wanting to kill the poor with cancer, when it was Obamacare that deprived 25 million of their pre-existing healthcare and left them with nothing but an illegal “penaltax”, you lying Maoist fuck.

      1. Republicans didn’t vote for it because they stopped caring about policy and started only caring about tribalism and winning. Them being opposed to Obamacare (because Obama) is, as I’ve explained, a boon to the strategy. They look, and are, intransigent, and their struggle to come up with any alternative is proof of that.

        1. Yes, you are completely full of shit. That is correct.

    2. “This is a case where the triangulation strategy worked out,…”

      You misspelled “lies”, you pathetic piece of lefty shit

    3. “…Obamacare, as is well known, was an approach to universality in healthcare dreamed up by conservative think tanks…”

      You.
      Are.
      Full.
      Of.
      Shit:
      “…Here, first, is an exhaustive list of the similarities between the plans:
      Both require carrying insurance…”
      https://www.lawyersgunsmoneyblog.com/2013/12/the-aca-v-the-heritage-plan-a-comparison-in-chart-form

    4. Would that be the universality that pays the same percentage of their GDP for half the population covered?

      And yet, even Saint Obama wasn’t willing to push for Universal with complete control of Congress. I wonder why that is?

    5. I’m going to bet you are not on O-Care. My COBRA ran out and it was the only option I could afford.

      I lost access to all 3 of my doctors, I have an over $8,000 deductible, and to get a surgery I need I am forced to pay out of pocket because the network is a fucking joke and doesn’t have anyone who does this particular procedure…

      When that bag of shit said “If you like your doctor, you can keep your doctor” he was lying, and he knew he was lying.

      He got paid to take care of the insurance industry, and that is exactly what he did.

  18. Neither the Democrats nor the Republicans offer an alternative to Covid-19 either.

    1. How dare they!

  19. Democrats are winning the healthcare war in the same way that Hillary Clinton won 90% of the vote.

    1. One of these days reality is going to manifest itself in election results, and the upside-down reality FOX News peddles to you is going to look like a big fat lie. Do you think Republicans haven’t tried to sell the “fuck off and die” plan because they simply haven’t thought of it?

      1. Of course, Fox lies.

        And CNN and MSNBC don’t?

        Wake the fuck up. It’s all propaganda.

      2. “…One of these days reality is going to manifest itself in election results,…”

        It did, 11/9/16, and whiny lefty shits like you haven’t yet learned that you LOST, loser.

  20. “The GOP’s decades long refusal to offer a compelling health care alternative has given Democrats the political upper hand.”

    Here’s a “compelling health care alternative.”
    Buy your own fucking health care program.

  21. “The GOP’s decadeslong refusal to offer a compelling health care alternative has given Democrats the political upper hand.”

    Yep, it’s hard to argue with the lefty lie of free shit, isn’t it?

  22. Based on the people in this country, any socialized medicine program that doesn’t include provisions to deny service to people who continue to make poor health choices is destined to flounder.

    I have no problem socializing costs so when some poor bastard in his 30s wakes up with a headache and finds out he has a brain tumor, he doesn’t go broke.

    On the other hand, I feel no moral obligation to finance lung cancer treatment for smokers (as an example)

  23. So, to any libertarian, the problem is obvious – rampant government interference in medical care markets since WW2. But what I never see is any sort of serious discussion on how you would unwind all that regulation in any practical sense. Because just saying ‘stop doing that’ probably won’t be enough (it might be in some cases, but not all of them).

    So, how do you unwrap government from medical care in a way that medical care still functions during the transition? What specific actions need to be taken?

    1. Because just saying ‘stop doing that’ probably won’t be enough (it might be in some cases, but not all of them).

      So, how do you unwrap government from medical care in a way that medical care still functions during the transition? What specific actions need to be taken?

      It’s easy. “Stop doing that.” Starting next year, employer medical plans are taxed as ordinary employee income, making them instantly obsolete. If you want to go one outlaw the mystery box pricing scheme that all medical providers use. Prices should be fixed and public so that the market and pricing signals can do their magic.

      1. I am both concerned that will not be sufficient, and worry that the chaos in the first few months would destroy health care in this country.

        Burning it all down only works if you’re an anarchist. And when it comes to medical care, if you’re young and healthy. I’d rather not bankrupt or kill my parents, tyvm.

  24. Republicans have ideas about a medical care plan. But they control no newspapers as the Democrats do. So their ideas just get buried.

  25. Republican politicians are just real estate developers* who want to make sure real estate developers are taken care of. Some have ideas, some have a vision, but nothing beyond real estate really unifies them as group. That said, I have voted Republican in every presidential election and will do so again in 2020. When the choice is between bad and terrible I will vote for bad every time.

    * Ok, ok, maybe not just real estate developers but others who have the soul of a real estate developer.

    1. i always say when faced with the binary choice of two awful parties, i may as well pick the one that wants to tax me less and not throw me in prison for owning guns.

  26. The US is the world’s laughing stock on pandemic response. Largely due to its decentralized and disjointed approach to health care.

    And government run healthcare makes economic sense. When people are unhealthy, they don’t work.

    1. The US government already spends roughly the same percent of GDP (8.5%) as other first world countries. So that means they spend a shit ton of money not even covering half the population (around 130million). For comparison, the UK spent about 8% of their GDP to cover half as many people (68million)

      https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-42950587

      Totes economical.

      1. US and UK healthcare are completely different.

        Obamacare is a poor compromise between private and public.

        1. “US and UK healthcare are completely different.”
          So you have no answer; got it.

          “Obamacare is a poor compromise between private and public.”
          Yeah, far worse than we had before.

  27. “The US is the world’s laughing stock on pandemic response. Largely due to its decentralized and disjointed approach to health care.”
    Yeah, Italy did really good right? And NY is definitely Idaho! I didn’t think you could be more of a fucking ignoramus than you’ve already shown yourself to be, but I was wrong

    “And government run healthcare makes economic sense. When people are unhealthy, they don’t work.”
    You.
    Are.
    Full.
    Of.
    Shit.

  28. “Obamacare Is Still Struggling. So Why Are Democrats Winning the Health Care Argument?”

    Because so many people are retarded when it comes to health care costs as well as never really thinking about their insurance costs, any supplemental they might get, and all the “free” benefits that insurance companies have to offer by law.

    In short, people are mostly ignorant and were easily bought off.

    I have yet to have a conversation with someone about insurance that immediately was able to answer things lie, “Where do you think the money comes from for your free wellness visits, discounted drugs, free cigarette cessation programs, etc.?”

    It’s clear that they never thought about it at all when I tell them that, “Well, just our “free” wellness visits actually are bill to our insurance company for $200. That means that cost, and is wrapped up as part of your premium, or $17 per month per insured person in your family.” then we we go over all the other “free” benefits they quickly see that insurance premiums are more like a free-bullshit prepayment plan.

    Then, of course, healthy people WAY over pay and unhealthy people WAY underpay. My wife and I are very healthy (nearly 100% whole plant based diet), no drinking, exercise six of seven days er week (weight training, long walks), low stress, no diseases or anything that we have to be treated for, etc.

    But, if you are the same age as my wife and I and as long as you don’t smoke you pay the same rate as we do, even if you are: overweight or obese, never exercise, eat a shitty diet, have type II diabetes from being obese, drink beers with the “guys” afterwork several days of the week, and are on half a dozen drugs from all the other conditions that your lifestyle choices have given you meaning that you are fighting illness and disease because you your choices.

    1. “…I have yet to have a conversation with someone about insurance that immediately was able to answer things lie, “Where do you think the money comes from for your free wellness visits, discounted drugs, free cigarette cessation programs, etc.?”…”

      Picked up some meds a couple of weeks ago, and the pharmacist was entering this and that on his terminal. The display on my side showed a cost of “$0.00”.
      I said I must have been there on the ‘free day’. He said ‘all drugs should cost that’.
      I asked whether he was volunteering to work for nothing. I got a shocked look and silence.

  29. Republicans don’t actually hate “Free Stuff from Uncle Sam”. Big surprise. Free Stuff will always be the most popular policy choice because, if nothing else, you can always buy it today and figure out who will pay for it tomorrow.

  30. A private insurance system is easy to destroy: pass a few mandates, pass laws on preexisting conditions, pass a catalog of required services. Undoing that destruction is very hard: you now have to deal with people who have fallen out of the private system and who no insurer will touch.

    So, yeah, it’s not surprising that it’s hard for Republicans to undo Obamacare, let alone come up with a better system.

    This was Obama’s plan all along: destroy more of the free market system so that single payer healthcare seems like the only alternative. He did that deliberately, and it’s disgusting.

  31. Obamacare Is Still Struggling. So Why Are Democrats Winning the Health Care Argument?

    Because we have a media that is so fucked up that Democrats and the left can literally kill people and they report it as if it is the best news, and the best thing that could every possibly have happened.

    And this isn’t something that ‘could’ happen like Trump’s ‘killing someone in the middle of Fifth Avenue’ comment, this is something that IS happening, right this very moment–and it will happen over and over again, every day until we stop it.

    1. Let’s be clear about what Suderman considers winning.

      Suderman thinks Democrats are winning because he perceives them gaining partisan political advantage by rhetoric– not any actual improvement by any metric – of actual healthcare. Because, by an actual metric of healthcare Democrats are objectively proving much, much worse at delivering healthcare. Witness the carnage in nursing homes in New York and New Jersey vs. the much lower death toll in homes in Florida.

      Now stop and think about that again, and see where Suderman’s concern really lies. He has no real concern actual healthcare being provided to actual human beings. No, what he is really doing is actively rooting for one side in a fight for political power and calling out their opponents for declining to fight on their enemies chosen ground.

      That his chosen side is also the side that is actually actively killing people through their poor healthcare management is of no concern to him, and it will not be so long as it does not adversely affect their political prospects. He should be ashamed of himself for making this all public, but proggs are anti humanists so have none.

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  33. Obamacare was a slight improvement on the shit show that preceded it. Team r has had years to come up with something, anything to replace it. This just shows both parties are bereft of ideas and there will be no change until we challenge the two party system. It’s like that Simpsons Halloween episode when two invading aliens are running for president and they say “what are you going to do, throw your vote away?”

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