Wednesday, September 9, 2009

At Least President Obama Did Not Call For a Shared sacrifice

At Least President Obama did not justifyhis health care proposal as requiring shared sacrifice by all. That was the rumor last week.

He would sell health care as requiring a shared sacrifice.

It’s not and he didn’t.

Congress will not share in his/their proposed health care plan. They will keep their gold plated plan for themselves, and not pay the penalty on it that will be assessed private insurance companies on their gold plated plans for the privately insured.

No shared sacrifice for the trial lawyers, whose prolific malpractice suits drive up the cost of medical care and force doctors to engage in defensive medicine to minimize the risks of liability. Defensive medicine consists of ordering normally unnecessary tests and procedures, but which are undertaken for legal – not medical reasons. For example, defensive medicine can consist of hundreds of thousands of medically unnecessary C-Sections annually.

Nope, no meaningful tort reform in his proposal.

Not shared sacrifice by the unions. Indeed, the bill has buried in it a $10 billion sop to unions, especially the United Auto Workers, to cover workers who retire early under union contracts.

And no shared sacrifice by undocumented immigrants! Yes, President Obama stated, more than once, that undocumented immigrants are not covered by the bill.

However, Congress specially refused to include an enforcement mechanism that will determine if an applicant is here legally or illegally. Thus, all an applicant has to do is check the box that he or she is in the United States legally, and that ends the matter.

Two other realities nullify the ban against undocumented immigrants. First, a major proposal in the future is to pick up on the McCain-Kennedy Immigration Reform Bill and grant amnesty to all immigrants presently in this country. Hence, they will be legal and eligible for the government health insurance.

Finally, a provision in the bill provides health care for anchor babies, who clearly are American citizens, and deserving of the same benefits as all other Americans. However, a provision will extend medical coverage to the family members of the anchor babies.

The shared sacrifice will be by tax payers, insurance companies, the much maligned insurance companies by the President, hospitals, pharmaceutical companies, and doctors who will all see their reimbursement rates cut substantially, the privately insured who will see their rates rise, the young uninsured who don’t want medical insurance at this stage in their lives but will be forced to purchase or pay a substantial fine, and the elderly.

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