Sometimes, looking at the political discourse in this country, I wonder if we really understand the ramp-up effect of increasing government programs and power over time; unlike in business, unlike in nature, unlike in, well, real life, failure is not punished, but at best ignored, at worst rewarded. Once a program is in place, it is almost never repealed, even when Republicans obtain political power, because voters become dependent on it.
ObamaCare is the official the law of the land. We will now begin the process of unmasking many of the costs hidden deeply within this massive bill.
A decade from now there will be significant buyer’s remorse. The cost will affect not only consumers, but the healthcare providers as well.
There is no such thing as a free lunch, and that, without a doubt, includes healthcare. Either the quality of care must decrease significantly for the masses or the availability of care must decrease drastically.
The implementation of ObamaCare assumed that the states would do the work of setting up individual state exchanges to provide a clearinghouse of health insurance information for the public, and provide the mechanism that triggered enforcement of the law against those employers who were accused of violations.
There are just 33 problems. That’s the number of states that have chosen to either not implement a state exchange at all or engage in a hybrid system that leaves many of the problems up to the federal government, as is the case with Illinois, Delaware and North Carolina, or which remain undecided on whether to accept the responsibility for developing the exchange.
Often when people near the end of life, secondary to an illness, they begin to contemplate their lives and recognize that of all the things they've accumulated and all the accolades that have been bestowed upon them, nothing is as valuable as life itself.
It seems that our politicians have not yet struck that balance between safety net and individual responsibility, given already disastrous budgets as we plow full speed ahead toward the fiscal cliff and a mandatory healthcare plan that will lessen the quality of our healthcare system as we know it and muddle our mission toward the poor. At the same time, we also have a moral duty to take care of our fellow man, regardless of the cost.
As it becomes more difficult for people to find primary care physicians, we must begin to look for solutions before a complete crisis engulfs us.
Many primary-care physicians who have moved to the concierge model accept a certain number of patients, all of whom pay several thousand dollars a year, and they don't accept any kind of healthcare insurance. This greatly reduces their expenses, guarantees a stable income and allows some quality in their lives, for they don't have to rush through patients in 15 minutes.
The controversy swirling around Senate candidate Rep. Todd Akin's (R-Mo.) comments about abortion in the case of rape or incest is telling, indeed — but not about Republicans. It's the Democrats who are, yet again, misrepresenting the facts (that's the politically acceptable language to expose the fact they are lying) and hope voters are too lazy, misinformed or stupid to learn the truth.
Even though Republican National Committee (RNC) Chairman Reince Priebus, presumptive GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney and his VP selection, Paul Ryan, and literally every leading Republican have resoundingly criticized Aiken, insisted he drop out of the race and pulled funding from his campaign, the Democrats are desperately trying to link the GOP to Akin's comments.
There is much conversation about Medicare in the presidential campaign and on Capitol Hill.
The thing that has not been highlighted enough is that Medicare has been in existence for decades already and many physicians under the current reimbursement plan do not participate. This is because reimbursements are very low and sometimes do not even pay for the time and equipment necessary to treat the patient.
Healthcare costs are escalating dramatically under ObamaCare simply because there is a lot more to government-mandated healthcare than meets the eye. This is why the bill required more than 2,000 pages. As those pages unfold, more requirements are uncovered, which have financial consequences.
A fair and honest reading of the bill, which has occurred in almost no cases, demonstrates that it is more about tremendous expansion of government bureaucracy than it is about healthcare reform. For example, if government controls healthcare, there will be no competition to keep prices affordable for the American people. People will not have the ability to be smart consumers with their healthcare and providers will not be able to compete to keep costs low when the vast majority of expenses are paid for by government programs. There will also be no choice in how treatment is administered.
My friend Walt, who inhabits the world of finance but maintains a social conscience, sent me an article and a note reminding me that key portions of the healthcare bill were, in fact, Republican ideas. In fact, the totality of the healthcare law as enacted closely tracks healthcare proposals offered in the 1970s by President Nixon, offered in the 1980s and 1990s by senior Republicans in Congress, and enacted into law in Massachusetts under a governor whose name I cannot remember, who stood next to Ted Kennedy celebrating passage of the state law that became the model for current federal law. Isn't it strange that Republicans now demonize plans that were originated by Republicans?