Posts tagged ‘health care reform’
Written by Lewis D. Eigen
Since the Obama Administration assumed office and coped with the economic meltdown, the President and his economic team have been working on legislation to eliminate the possibility that the American taxpayer will every again have to bail out a private company that was “too big to fail.” No sooner did the President make the proposed legislation public than the Republican Senate Minority Leader, Mitch McConnell (KY) announced. “the effort by President Obama and Democrats to reform the financial industry is actually a way to institute endless taxpayer funded bailouts for big Wall Street banks.” He claims that what the Treasury Department, the Council of Economic Advisors, the Federal Reserve, and such non partisan economic luminaries as Paul Volker have been working on for over a year, will do just the opposite of what the Administration’s purpose is in drafting the bill. On the surface, McConnell’s statement appears absurd. Many accuse him of just another deliberate political lie, about as absurd as the Republican “Death Panels” accusation in the Health Care Reform debate. However, there is a logic to these Republican “lies”. One that enables McConnell and many other Republican leaders to make these public announcements with a straight face. One that allows their conscience and intellect to make these statements and not believe that they are lying to the public. This article will explain and analyze this logic which may well be more dangerous for our Democracy than political lies. (more…)
Written by Lewis D. Eigen
With all the histrionics over Health Care Reform, throughout the entire process, it was easy to miss some of the very important issues of the debate. One, in particular, got entirely lost for a very interesting set of reasons. It was the Bigness issue. But there was hardly a Republican who did not complain about Bigness. It was mentioned hundreds of times each day throughout the more than a year of debate. How could it be lost?
It was “lost in plain site”. There are few citizens who do not know that one of the criticisms of the Health Care Reform Bill was that there would be a large, centralized, system running American Health Care instead of the smaller decentralized status quo. But very few people indeed can recall any discussion of WHY bigness would be bad–for our health delivery system and for the nation. That is what was missed. And that is where the Republican political tacticians could have done a much better job.. In their choice of tactics to defeat Health Care Reform, they failed to communicate and explain the, admittedly complex, issue of Bigness in American history and public policy. Had they done so, Health Reform probably still would still have passed, but it might look quite different from the present law. This article is the first of a series that discusses what the debate missed: Why bigness in our nation’s health system might not be very good. (more…)
Insurance Companies have already won the Health Reform battle beating out the Doctors and the Government. Will they take the money and run?
With the Massachusetts Senatorial election going to the man who promised that he would be the 41st vote to make sure that the minority of the Senate could control the Health Reform legislation of the nation, most people believed that the battle was entering a new phase and the winners and losers were yet to be decided. However, over a decade earlier, the real battle had been decided. The American consumers lost; the Government lost; the hospitals lost; the doctors lost. The health insuracne companies won and for the past decade has already ammased the economic fruits of its victory. And while all the other forces, Democrats and Republicans, liberals and conservatives, politicians and citizens all fight it out, the one group that has already locked in a winning position for the next decade is the same insurance companies. All the rest of us will fight it out to determine how terrible the health care system will have become before the insurance companies just take the money and run. This article explains some of how all this was allowed to happen.