No Runny Eggs

The repository of one hard-boiled egg from the south suburbs of Milwaukee, Wisconsin (and the occassional guest-blogger). The ramblings within may or may not offend, shock and awe you, but they are what I (or my guest-bloggers) think.

Archive for November 16th, 2009

Catching up, the November edition

I’ve been out of steam for a while, but I think I have some now. Let’s see what I missed:

  • Tom “Milk Carton” Barrett decided to be the “savior” of the Democratic Party of Wisconsin and announced that he would be the de facto nominee for governor on Sunday. The timing was not a mistake; ever since Jim “Craps” Doyle (WEAC/HoChunk-For Sale) figured out all the money from the tribes, the unions and the lawyers, as well as 100% control over the state-level electoral process, couldn’t save his hide, the Dems have been looking for a Missiah on the level of Barack Hussein Obama II.

    Related to that, the RPW and the Walker campaign immediately seized upon Barrett’s love of tax hikes (he voted for the then-largest state tax hike in history, the still-largest federal tax hike in history, and raised taxes, created and raised mandatory fees, and imposed a then-36% increase in the wheel tax that has proven so unpopular, Beloit dropped a lower version of it) and called him Tommy the Taxer. If there’s one thing outstate Wisconsinites hate more than Milwaukee-area conservatives, it is Milwaukee tax-hiking liberals.

  • Lou Dobbs got a $8 million parting gift from CNN as they strive to be “objective” be a clone of PMSDNC (H/T – Ace).
  • The Wall Street Journal editorial board has a two-fer on PlaceboCare today – they eviscerate the Baucus version of the Death Panel (hint; if you think the upfront cuts in Medicare Advantage are the only cuts that program will sustain, you’re sorely mistaken), and then they take on a proposed radical expansion of the Medicare tax into a “progressive” as well as a general income tax to replace the proposed tax on “lavish” health benefits.
  • A week after stinking up Raymond James Stadium to give the last winless team a win, the Packers crushed the Cowpokes. Which Packers team is the real one?
  • Speaking of Obama, he and Attorney General Eric Holder decided New York was the perfect place to drag KSM and buds for a civilian trial. What could possibly go wrong from a security standpoint (other than things that preclude the DC or Northern Virginia district court handle it, like truck bombs)?

    Continuing the “what could possibly go wrong” theme, why not put them in the military commissions the Cole bombing group is going into? Last I checked, the Pentagon is a military installation. Could it be that they want KSM to walk on a technicality, or could it be that they want Al Qaeda to learn all of our methods of stuffing them the last 8 years?

  • Speaking of Club Gitmo, the latest place President Present wants to stick the detainees is in the state where he earned the nickname “Present”, specifically in a facility not exactly designed for this kind of work. Again, what could possibly go wrong with putting a bunch of Islamokazis in a generic maximum-security about 3 hours from Milwaukee and Chicago, and spitting distance from the Mississippi River and one of the lock-and-dam combos on same?

That Wasn’t The Plan!

On Friday, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services released an actuarial report that analyzed the recently passed House version of Placebocare.  Chris Frates at Politico.Com reviewed the report and pulled out some very interesting insights and conclusions.  You can read Frates’ full review here

Of the many items that Frates pulled out of the report, a few require some additional comment.

Pg. 6 – A public plan would cost 4 percent more than private plans because its utilization rules would not be as strict as the private sector.

I thought the whole purpose of Placebocare was to reduce the costs of health care?  I guess we could look at total costs but with more people coming into the health care system there is no way that is going to happen.  That only leaves a reduction on a per person basis.  This report says that not only with the public option not be cheaper than private plans, it will actually be 4 percent more expensive.  If that is the case, wouldn’t the answer be to use the existing, cheaper, private insurance and provide tax subsidies for those that need assistance?

Pg. 7 – 18 million people will remain uninsured and choose to pay the fines for not carrying insurance rather than buy coverage.

I’ve lost track of how many “uninsured” we have.  The original number of 47 million went down the tubes with the anger over insuring illegal aliens.  Let’s use a number of 35 million to be generous.  If 18 million chose to pay fines, that means only 17 million additional will be insured.  While the final tab is yet to be determined, it’s pretty safe to say that if it was fully implemented on day one, Placebocare would cost at least $1.3 trillion for the first 9 years.  Finish the math equation and that comes to nearly $8,500 per person for health insurance.  Folks, that’s PER PERSON.  A family of four would be over $30,000 PER YEAR!

My family buys its own health insurance.  We have a few health issues so we actually pay the highest rated premium that can be charged.  Even with those issues, I can tell you that we don’t pay anywhere near $30K/year for all of our insurance AND out of pocket costs for a year.  No wonder costs are increasing!

Pg 16 – “The additional demand for health services could be difficult to meet initially with existing health provider resources and could lead to price increases, cost-shifting, changes in providers’ willingness to treat patients with low-reimbursement health coverage.” Translation: A crush of newly insured patients could be a shock to the system.

Well No shit!  I’ve laid out numerous times how there is no way to change the number of insured nearly overnight, and not experience a shortage of medical personell.  What the report doesn’t address is that this won’t be an “initial” shortage.  As reimbursements are reduced, work environments pinched, some medical personell will “go Galt.”  I suspect that what we experience short term will actually be our experience for an extended period of time; it could be our permanent go forward experience.

The more information that comes out, the more it’s obvious that the promises of Placebocare expire quicker than President Obama’s campaign promises.  That is to say, they never really existed.

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