Category Archives: News

If government can’t fix health care, then who can?

Story from the New York Post. (H/T Right Klik via Neil Simpson)

Excerpt:

The state is trying to shut down a New York City doctor’s ambitious plan to treat uninsured patients for around $1,000 a year.

Dr. John Muney offers his patients everything from mammograms to mole removal at his AMG Medical Group clinics, which operate in all five boroughs.

“I’m trying to help uninsured people here,” he said.

His patients agree to pay $79 a month for a year in return for unlimited office visits with a $10 co-pay.

[His] plan landed him in the crosshairs of the state Insurance Department, which ordered him to drop his fixed-rate plan – which it claims is equivalent to an insurance policy.

He says he can afford to charge such a small amount because he doesn’t have to process mountains of paperwork and spend hours on billing.

“If they leave me alone, I can serve thousands of patients,” he said.

Government doesn’t like it when private businesses solve problems. Government only wants solutions they can control and regulate. After all, if there is no (government-caused) health care crisis, then these commies would be out of a job. They have to cause the crisis and then market themselves as the only solution.

Right Klik also has a handy list of the problems caused by government.

* “Community Rating” laws, which limit insurers’ ability to charge different prices to different customers, raise prices by 20.3% for individual policies and 27.3% for family policies

* Mandated benefits raise the expected price of an individual policy by approximately 0.4% per mandate. For family policies the increase is approximately 0.5% per mandate. The typical state has about 20 mandates (with a range from 6 to 48) so a reduction from 20 to 10 mandates would imply a 4% decrease in price for individual policies, and a 5% decrease for family policies.

* “Any-Willing-Provider” laws, which limit insurers’ ability to exclude hospitals and doctors from their networks, raise prices by 1.5% for individual policies and 5.3% for family policies.

* Federal law places limits on the discounts employers and insurance companies can provide for healthy, cost-saving behaviors.

* Twelve million Americans go without health insurance because the Federal Government does not allow people to purchase insurance across state lines.

The way insurance works is that people need to pay premiums that take into account the likelihood that they will make claims. The people who make a lot of claims need to pay more. This is what encourages people to take fewer risks and keep costs down. When government gets involved to equalize outcomes regardless of risks, then there is no incentive to live responsibly. The result is a shortage caused by high demand for medical care, and low supply.

How about we just let the free market work instead?

Obama appoints SEIU union executive to create manufacturing jobs

Story from ABC News. (H/T Gateway Pundit)

Excerpt:

In Cincinnati tomorrow, President Obama will announce that he’s appointing Ron Bloom his Senior Counselor for Manufacturing Policy, White House sources tell ABC News.

Bloom is currently Senior Advisor to Secretary of the Treasury Tim Geithner as a member of the President’s Task Force on the Automotive Industry, named to that position in February. He will remain in that position even while he takes on his new task.

Jammie Wearing Fool writes:

The name Ron Bloom is one that we need to start paying attention to. He has a long history of being the negotiating face of unions in a suit. He is a Harvard Business School graduate who has worked for the unions beginning with SEIU for decades. The most recent union he represented was the United Steel Workers (USW) before becoming a part of the automotive team that Obama put together.

The problem is that unions don’t create manufacturing jobs – they lose them. Says who? Says Lawrence Summers, that’s who. (I.e. – Obama’s buddy Larry Summers!)

Excerpt:

Another cause of long-term unemployment is unionization. High union wages that exceed the competitive market rate are likely to cause job losses in the unionized sector of the economy. Also, those who lose high-wage union jobs are often reluctant to accept alternative low-wage employment. Between 1970 and 1985, for example, a state with a 20 percent unionization rate, approximately the average for the fifty states and the District of Columbia, experienced an unemployment rate that was 1.2 percentage points higher than that of a hypothetical state that had no unions. To put this in perspective, 1.2 percentage points is about 60 percent of the increase in normal unemployment between 1970 and 1985.

Talk about the fox guarding the hen-house! Obama’s economic ignorance strikes again!

New CDC study says that gay/bisexual men 50 times for likely to be HIV-positive

Story from NPR. (H/T Neil Simpson)

Note: CDC = the Center for Disease Control, a US government agency.

Excerpt:

Before doctors knew what HIV was, they referred to the virus as “Gay Cancer” because it overwhelmingly affected gay men.

More than 25 years later, AIDS activists say the CDC’s finding that gay and bisexual men are 50 times more likely to contract the virus is the first time the government has given a concrete view of HIV’s effect on that population.

“The CDC has never been willing to issue rates before. So we would only have absolute numbers, and whether these numbers are going up or down.”

Walt Senterfitt is an epidemiologist and board chair of CHAMP, the Community HIV/AIDS Mobilization Project.

“Starting with the facts and the truth, and then digging down into why these particular facts might be the case, is the best way to generate good public policy.”

The CDC declined to be interviewed for this story, saying the statistics are preliminary.

Neil Simpson comments on this story here. Nearly 100 comments have been posted there, so far.

NOTE: Comments will be strictly filtered for this post. Neil is a lot more lenient than I am, so you may want to comment on his site instead if you think your comment is too harsh.

Sen. Tom Coburn takes a hostile question at a town hall

Video from Robert Stacy McCain. (H/T ECM)

Telling it like it is.

McCain writes:

I’m nearly in tears. No joke. This guy bears consideration for President, if he’s interested, and a straight-ahead draft as POTUS if he’s not.

He has more grasp the Constitution, and what this country is really about, than just about anyone else I’ve heard currently holding public office.

This is why he is one of my favorite conservatives.

Health care in Britain: question a doctor and lose your children

Story from The London Times. (H/T Stop the ACLU via ECM)

Excerpt:

* The mother of a 13-year-old girl who became partly paralysed after being given a cervical cancer vaccination says social workers have told her the child may be removed if she (the mother) continues to link her condition with the vaccination.

* A couple had all six of their children removed from their care after they disputed the necessity of an invasive medical test on their eldest daughter. Doctors, who suspected she might have had a blood disease, called for social services to obtain an emergency protection order, although it was subsequently confirmed that she was not suffering from the condition. The parents were still considered unstable, and all their children were taken from them.

* A single mother whose teenage son is terminally ill and confined to a wheelchair has been told he is to become the subject of a care order after she complained that her local authority’s failure to provide bathroom facilities for him has left her struggling to maintain sanitary standards.

You can question the service provider in a free market capitalist health care system – they have no power to ruin your life if you try to oppose them. But you can’t question the service provider in a government-run health care system. That’s treason, according to some Democrats. How dare you oppose the vision of the annointed? They’re better than you!

Well, actually some people are questioning government, and doing a pretty good job of it. Take a look at these two women at town halls.

From Hot Air:

From Michelle Malkin:

It’s stories like this that make me despair of ever getting married and having children. Something goes wrong in the minds of people on the left so that they can commit the most abominable atrocities – even taking people’s children away from their own parents! Who wants to live in a world like that?

And the young people seem to be so enthusiastic about being coerced by a secular government – and why not? Parents just hand their children off to government-run schools who cannot tell the truth but must advocate for more and more government. That’s how they get raises after all.

Here are some encouraging videos that show how upset some Americans are about Democrats wanting to bring socialized medicine here.

More NHS horror stories here.