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Three Years On, Obamacare Has Become Irresistable
Townhall.com ^ | March 24, 2013 | Austin Hill

Posted on 03/24/2013 12:23:55 AM PDT by Kaslin

It has been federal for three years. It has brought chaos to the labor markets. It has cost people their livelihoods and it is more unpopular than ever.

So why does “Obamacare” (officially known as the “Affordable Care Act”) remain so irresistible for so many of our fellow Americans? Because at its core Obamacare is not about health care, so much as it is about the redistribution of wealth, and for those who are on the receiving end of the redistribution the agenda is completely irresistible.

When the federal government doles-out cash, it’s difficult to say “no.” That’s why many of our nation’s top business consulting firms are cashing-in, as state government officials hire the consulting firms to figure out how to set up the new federal health care bureaucracies, complete with their own state-specific websites and call centers.

How difficult and costly could it be, do you suppose, to set up a website and a call center for the residents of one individual state? In the world of private enterprise, most small to midsize companies doing business within a specific region of the U.S. would be foolish to spend much more than a hundred thousand dollars for their customer service website and the infrastructure for a call center, and in many cases the project could be completed for much less.

But with Obamacare, the “customer service” element has become more of a “corporate welfare” element. Companies, careers, and personal fortunes are being made by people who are the states, as firms bill the individual states millions of taxpayer dollars for the website and call center set-ups (and the Obama administration frequently offers to reimburse the states for the set-up costs).

Take for example a company called Leavitt Partners, LLC. Founded by the former Republican Governor of Utah (and former U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services) Michael Leavitt, the company describes itself as a “healthcare intelligence business,” and is focused solely on state-by-state Obamacare compliance (they have already completed Utah’s insurance exchange start-up).

We’re talking here about Michael Leavitt, the former Utah Governor who last year endorsed and campaigned on behalf of Mitt Romney, the presidential candidate who pledged to “end” Obamacare. Yes, that Michael Leavitt is making millions advising the states on how to comply with the monstrosity that his pal Mitt wanted to eliminate.

How much money is in play for these companies? Consider that last fall representatives from Leavitt’s company traveled north and proposed to build an exchange for their tiny nieghboring state of Idaho, a state with a population of less than 1.7 million people. Once the Leavitt representatives unveiled their proposed price tag to build an exchange - $70 million-an incredulous member of Idaho’s state insurance task force asked “does Governor Leavitt really believe that this is a good idea?”

Company associate Brett Graham replied with the nuanced explanation that “Governor Leavitt doesn’t like the feds dictating to the states,” however, the Governor also believes that the states should “stand inside the circle with the feds rather than stand outside of it”- which was an artful way of saying “yes, Governor Leavitt likes this and wants to get paid to show you how to do it.”

Leavitt’s proposal was not the most expensive that the sparsely populated Idaho received. The global accounting and consulting firm KPMG weighed-in with a price tag of $77 million, and when a state official asked what the residents of Idaho would get in return for such a large expenditure, KPMG representative Andrew Gottschalk was vague: “It’s hard to explain exactly what you get…It’s hardware, it’s software, there’s infrastructure, there’s people and staffing” he stated. “There would likely be a call center. It’s all kinds of things… there’s a lot of stuff….but it’s hard to be specific.”

States spending millions of taxpayer dollars, and receiving “all kinds of things” and “a lot of stuff” in return. That’s our present-day reality with Obamacare. Along with Leavitt Partners and KPMG, global consulting firms Maximus and Mercer are also cashing-in. These firms employ well educated, highly skilled professionals with JD’s, MBA’s, and advanced degrees in information systems and healthcare management, most of whom would undoubtedly reject the idea that they are welfare recipients. As the Maximus corporate website states, “we leverage our extensive experience and strong commitment to ethics to provide high quality services and solutions.”

Along with the Obamacare cash that’s flowing in to private consultants’ accounts, there’s the money that’s being handed-out to state and county governments under the auspice of Medicaid expansion. A key component of Obamacare was to have mandated that the individual states reduce eligibility requirements for Medicaid, and expand the number of participants in their respective programs. However, the United States Supreme Court overturned that component of the Obamacare law, so expansion of Medicaid is an elective choice for each of the states.

But not to worry, the President has made the expansion of the federal Medicaid welfare program irresistible, as the Administration is offering to pay 100% of the expansion costs for the first three years, for states that agree to the expansion this year. That’s why, for example, New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, who has refused to allow an Obamacare insurance exchange in his state, nonetheless agreed to the Medicaid expansion – when you can get the fed’s to pay for people’s “free” healthcare, that alleviates the state and county agencies from paying for it. It creates an addiction to federal spending, but if you’re in charge of a state or federal agency, it makes sense on some level.

This is the reality of Obamacare. It’s wildly unpopular for the masses, but irresistible for those on the receiving end of the money grab.


TOPICS: Culture/Society; Editorial; Government
KEYWORDS: abortion; barackobama; corporatewelfare; deathpanels; obamacare; zerocare

1 posted on 03/24/2013 12:23:55 AM PDT by Kaslin
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To: Kaslin

Shakes head, it’s all over for us, isn’t it?


2 posted on 03/24/2013 12:27:42 AM PDT by cardinal4 (Constitution? What Constitution?)
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To: Kaslin

My tag line was prophetic!


3 posted on 03/24/2013 1:08:54 AM PDT by entropy12 (The republic is doomed cuz people have figured out they can get free stuff by voting democrats)
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To: entropy12
Thomas Sowell ended his Marxism when in his first job as a Dept of Labor staffer he figured the gov cared not a whit about the citizen.

The gov is a self serving parasite engorging itself on other people’s labor.

Slavery or servitude, the pendulum swings and the bell tolls and it tolls for thee.

We can only hope our thinking masters will over indulge at the trough.

Growing, growing, gone!

4 posted on 03/24/2013 1:24:41 AM PDT by urbanpovertylawcenter (where the law and poverty collide in an urban setting and sparks fly)
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To: entropy12

True, but voting D just means we go down the drain faster. The R party pretends they will stop these give aways but they almost never do and always add some of their own.


5 posted on 03/24/2013 1:36:56 AM PDT by palmer (Obama = Carter + affirmative action)
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To: Kaslin

People will learn that eating out of the government trough does more harm in the long run.


6 posted on 03/24/2013 2:25:32 AM PDT by jonrick46 (The opium of Communists: other people's money.)
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To: Kaslin

And here’s an idea of how much the premiums will be:

http://laborcenter.berkeley.edu/healthpolicy/calculator/


7 posted on 03/24/2013 3:09:46 AM PDT by Prince of Space (Be Breitbart, baby. LIFB.)
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To: Kaslin

An excellent reminder how the Gubmint installed, manipulated and stole Social Security funds. Email received this a.m.

KEEP PASSING THIS ROUND UNTIL EVERY ONE HAS HAD THE OPPORTUNITY TO READ IT...

THIS IS SURE SOMETHING TO THINK ABOUT!!!!

THE ONLY THING WRONG WITH THE GOVERNMENT’S CALCULATION OF AVAILABLE SOCIAL SECURITY IS THEY FORGOT TO FIGURE IN THE PEOPLE WHO DIED BEFORE THEY EVER COLLECTED A SOCIAL SECURITY CHECK!!!

WHERE DID THAT MONEY GO?

Remember, not only did you and I contribute to Social Security but your employer did, too.
It totaled 15% of your income before taxes.
If you averaged only $30K over your working life, that’s close to $220,500.

Read that again.

Did you see where the Government paid in one single penny?

We are talking about the money you and your employer put in a Government bank to insure you and I that we would have a retirement check from the money we put in, not the Government.
Now they are calling the money we put in an entitlement when we reach the age to take it back.

If you calculate the future invested value of $4,500 per year (yours & your employer’s contribution) at a simple 5% interest (less than what the Government pays on the money that it borrows), after 49 years of working you’d have $892,919.98.

If you took out only 3% per year, you’d receive $26,787.60 per year and it would last better than 30 years (until you’re 95 if you retire at age 65) and that’s with no interest paid on that final amount on deposit!

If you bought an annuity and it paid 4% per year, you’d have a lifetime income of $2,976.40 per month.

Another thing with me.... I have two deceased husbands who died in their 50’s, (one was 51 and the other one was 59 before one percent of their social security could be drawn. I worked all my life and am drawing 100% on my own social security).
Their S.S. money will never have one cent drawn from what they paid into S.S. all their lives.

THE FOLKS IN WASHINGTON HAVE PULLED OFF A BIGGER PONZI SCHEME THAN BERNIE MADOFF EVER DID.

Entitlement my foot, I paid cash for my social security insurance!

Just because they borrowed the money for other government spending, doesn’t make my benefits some kind of charity or handout!!

Remember Congressional benefits? -— free healthcare, outrageous retirement packages, 67 paid holidays, three weeks paid vacation, unlimited paid sick days.

Now that’s welfare, and they have the nerve to call my social security retirement payments entitlements?

We’re “broke” and we can’t help our own Seniors, Veterans, Orphans, or Homeless. Yet in the last few months we have provided aid to Haiti, Chile and Turkey and now Pakistan... home of bin Laden.

Literally, BILLIONS of DOLLARS!!!
And they can’t help our own citizens in New York and New Jersey!

They call Social Security and Medicare an entitlement even though most of us have been paying for it all our working lives, and now, when it’s time for us to collect, the government is running out of money.

Why did the government borrow from it in the first place?

It was supposed to be in a locked box, not part of the general fund.

Sad isn’t it.

99% of people won’t have the guts to forward this.

I’m in the 1% —
I just did.


“A Nation of Sheep will beget a Government of Wolves.” ~ Edward R.
Murrow**


8 posted on 03/24/2013 4:15:42 AM PDT by sodpoodle (Life is prickly - carry tweezers.)
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To: sodpoodle
We are talking about the money you and your employer put in a Government bank to insure you and I that we would have a retirement check from the money we put in, not the Government.

Now they are calling the money we put in an entitlement when we reach the age to take it back.

Who out there is surprised? Really?

I'm 50, and I'm expecting nothing. Anything more than nothing will be a pleasant surprise.

I plan on working well into my 70s.

9 posted on 03/24/2013 4:23:25 AM PDT by St_Thomas_Aquinas
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To: sodpoodle

I agree with your opinion but I’ve noticed that at F.R. that those who agree with it tend to be at, near or over age 62, younger members disagree.

My own S.S. is large in comparison to the average check, I have seen the average stated as between, anywhere from $1,000 to $1600. Many here advocate for “means testing”. Just another way of redistribution of money.

If I am getting a “large” check, it means I paid in “large”.


10 posted on 03/24/2013 4:31:15 AM PDT by Graybeard58 (_.. ._. .. _. _._ __ ___ ._. . ___ ..._ ._ ._.. _ .. _. .)
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To: cardinal4

> Shakes head, it’s all over for us, isn’t it?

If it’s all over for us, it’s all over for them because we pay for it.

Let O decimate the Middle Class. Clearly he hasn’t thought this through.


11 posted on 03/24/2013 4:35:30 AM PDT by jsanders2001
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To: Prince of Space

That calculator says I will have to pay $237 a month. I don’t have a spare $237 a month, period.


12 posted on 03/24/2013 4:46:27 AM PDT by savedbygrace (But God.)
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To: Prince of Space

If I go to part time and collect Social Security, my net take-home would be about the same as it is now, but I would then be on Medicaid for health care, rather than having to pay for health care. Wow.


13 posted on 03/24/2013 4:49:02 AM PDT by savedbygrace (But God.)
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To: Prince of Space

I’m wrong. Apparently, to apply for Medicaid, I have to include Social Security income, so I don’t qualify.

This sux,


14 posted on 03/24/2013 4:54:58 AM PDT by savedbygrace (But God.)
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To: bmwcyle

ping


15 posted on 03/24/2013 5:11:10 AM PDT by Apple Blossom (Politicians are like diapers, they both need changed regularly, and for the same reason.)
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To: savedbygrace

Are you 65 or older?

If so, why are you not on Medicare?


16 posted on 03/24/2013 5:28:19 AM PDT by magellan
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To: Kaslin

The article makes a brilliant point....anyone making money in the “compliance” business is just a snakey crony capitalist. This is why I cannot stand the idea of that new pamphlet being pimped by Dick Morris on Obama Care...it strikes me as “compliance” friendly also. Do not comply, RESIST.


17 posted on 03/24/2013 5:34:43 AM PDT by C. Edmund Wright
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To: Kaslin

Obamacare, or something like it, was made inevitable by things that have happened going back to 1965.
So, no, it won’t be gotten rid of - it will destroy itself, and it will also destroy the medical system it was designed to kill.

Doctors and patients being the decisionmakers is fine - it fact, it’s the only way to fly.

Doctors and patients making decisions and paying for them with with other people’s money - in fact, not even with OPM but with massive borrowing incurring debts too large to be repaid - that was never fine.

The fact is, Medicare (which remains massively popular, even around here) has killed the system - it just took 40 years to die.


18 posted on 03/24/2013 5:40:47 AM PDT by Jim Noble (When strong, avoid them. Attack their weaknesses. Emerge to their surprise.)
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To: C. Edmund Wright

There a select few that are going to make a lot of money from obamacare. They will be select by the government[Democrats]. Most, however will not. most insurance companies will go bankrupt. Most businesses will go bankrupt. Most hospitals will go bankrupt. The doctors will all eventually be replaced with affirmative actions with absolutely no ability or intrest to diagnose patients and no resources to treat them. Their sole purpose is to ensure that said patients die as planned. That , in a nutshell is the finished product callled t”Teh Affordable Health Care Act”. All it will cost one is one’s life[after the Government has drained one of their money and other assets]/


19 posted on 03/24/2013 5:45:53 AM PDT by sport
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To: magellan

63


20 posted on 03/24/2013 5:51:21 AM PDT by savedbygrace (But God.)
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To: C. Edmund Wright

Do you mean the one that is advertised on TV?


21 posted on 03/24/2013 5:55:43 AM PDT by Kaslin (He needed the ignorant to reelect him, and he got them. Now we all have to pay the consequenses)
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To: Kaslin

Yes, advertised on TV, Newsmax, and radio....not sure who wrote it, but Morris is pushing it hard. I’ve not read it, so I may be wrong, but it strikes me that it is a compliance book, of sorts, which I think is 180 degrees the wrong way to go.

Now, if I’m wrong on this...I’d be happy to know that...


22 posted on 03/24/2013 6:05:44 AM PDT by C. Edmund Wright
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To: sodpoodle

That’s right on. When people get into an uproar about privatizing SS I point out to them that if you die early, the gov’t pockets your money and you can’t leave it to your heirs. This statistically affects black men more too.


23 posted on 03/24/2013 6:13:48 AM PDT by Rusty0604
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To: sodpoodle
Remember, not only did you and I contribute to Social Security but your employer did, too.
It totaled 15% of your income before taxes.
If you averaged only $30K over your working life, that’s close to $220,500.

The primary beneficiary of a socialist program is the socialist politicans. SS was made so Congress could spend more. Period.

24 posted on 03/24/2013 6:26:52 AM PDT by VRW Conspirator (Cyprus - the beginning)
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To: urbanpovertylawcenter

If we could have a law that would prevent people, who work for government or are receivers of government largess, from voting.

Then implement the Simple Tax - a yearly tax of 10 to 20 percent for EVERYONE (rich or poor) with no deductions, tax credits, or other loopholes.


25 posted on 03/24/2013 6:37:57 AM PDT by Jack Hydrazine (It's the end of the world as we know it and I feel fine!)
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To: Jim Noble

Brilliant post.

“Doctors and patients being the decisionmakers is fine - it fact, it’s the only way to fly.”

One more element must be added....payment terms are between the doctor and patient as well.

With that, you have a way to fix the system.

Frankly I think completely eliminating SS, medicare, and medicaid - COMPLETELY is the way to go. That’s the only hope - though some will see it as contradictory, especially those on SS, medicare and medicaid.


26 posted on 03/24/2013 6:44:12 AM PDT by RFEngineer
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To: jonrick46
People will learn that eating out of the government trough does more harm in the long run.

.....those that sup with the devil need a long spoon....

27 posted on 03/24/2013 6:45:20 AM PDT by spokeshave (The only people better off today than 4 years ago are the Prisoners at Guantanamo.)
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To: Rusty0604

“When people get into an uproar about privatizing SS I point out to them that if you die early, the gov’t pockets your money and you can’t leave it to your heirs.”

Better yet, just eliminate it completely. If there is any money left over (and let’s be honest, there isn’t) then it is returned proportionally to those who paid it.

We then have a charity problem. This is a challenge that without government interference can be more easily solved than trying to sustain the existing system of benefits of all kinds.


28 posted on 03/24/2013 6:48:05 AM PDT by RFEngineer
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To: RFEngineer
though some will see it as contradictory, especially those on SS, medicare and medicaid


29 posted on 03/24/2013 6:59:44 AM PDT by Jim Noble (When strong, avoid them. Attack their weaknesses. Emerge to their surprise.)
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To: Jack Hydrazine

I remember when my hometown had a good law. If you received welfare from the town, you could not vote. We need that law nationwide.


30 posted on 03/24/2013 7:23:49 AM PDT by abclily
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To: abclily

Should be discussed more on FR.


31 posted on 03/24/2013 7:31:04 AM PDT by Jack Hydrazine (It's the end of the world as we know it and I feel fine!)
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To: Kaslin

Isn’t KPMG the proud sponsor of Phil “I’m paying too much in taxes” Mickleson?


32 posted on 03/24/2013 7:52:58 AM PDT by logitech (I think it's time)
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To: Kaslin

One way or the other it won’t last long. Obamacare is the definition of unsustainable. It will collapse everything.


33 posted on 03/24/2013 9:43:10 AM PDT by skeeter
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To: urbanpovertylawcenter

All this means is that Americans are no smarter than the Russians, Chinese & Cubans etc. Socialism/communism sounds good and fair to the masses. Re-distribute wealth so you will get your fair share never fails to seduce.

After 40 years or so, the masses wake up because their lives are even worse. Then they begin the reversion to capitalism.

Who would have predicted 40 years ago China will have ONE MILLION new millionaires? And Russia now has a flat rate income tax and lots and lots of Billionaires. Cuba is still suffering under iron fisted dictatorship.


34 posted on 03/24/2013 11:12:13 AM PDT by entropy12 (The republic is doomed cuz people have figured out they can get free stuff by voting democrats)
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To: Kaslin
...and for those who are on the receiving end of the redistribution the agenda is completely irresistible.

Well; when yer robbin' Peter to pay Paul; you can ALWAYS count on Paul's support!

35 posted on 03/24/2013 12:25:04 PM PDT by Elsie (Heck is where people, who don't believe in Gosh, think they are not going...)
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To: sodpoodle
THE ONLY THING WRONG WITH THE GOVERNMENT’S CALCULATION OF AVAILABLE SOCIAL SECURITY IS THEY FORGOT TO FIGURE IN THE PEOPLE WHO DIED BEFORE THEY EVER COLLECTED A SOCIAL SECURITY CHECK!!!

Almost...

...the gummint sure had no CLUE that it would be legal to murder future American's before they drew their first breath.

55,000,000 paying INTO the system would sure help with the bills!!!

36 posted on 03/24/2013 12:28:04 PM PDT by Elsie (Heck is where people, who don't believe in Gosh, think they are not going...)
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To: sodpoodle

Social Security was a transfer the wealth Ponzi scheme from day one. It is a tax which the government takes from you and gives to someone else. You are not owed a single penny and never have been. The money has not be stolen or misused. The system has and continues to work just as it was intended which is: causing it recipients to become dependents of the US Federal Government.

Social Security = Welfare.


37 posted on 03/24/2013 2:50:36 PM PDT by FreedomNotSafety
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To: Elsie

I am totally opposed to abortion. It is truly “death penalty for the pre-born”.

Having said that, if you examine the demographics of those aborted, I seriously doubt their survival would be a net positive for the SocSec system.


38 posted on 03/24/2013 2:56:27 PM PDT by nascarnation (Baraq's economic policy: trickle up poverty)
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To: savedbygrace

So if you and your spouse make $60,000 a year and are age 60, you pay about $475/month and the govt. pays about $1250. Sounds good, right? Except if you make $62,500 or more, you pay the whole $1725/month, because that $2500 extra per year means you’re suddenly rich!

Kathleen Sebelius and her entire crew of idiots should be taken out and shot!


39 posted on 03/24/2013 3:52:59 PM PDT by Prince of Space (Be Breitbart, baby. LIFB.)
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To: Prince of Space

Do I hear an “I’m thirsty!” from the Tree of Liberty??


40 posted on 03/24/2013 5:12:24 PM PDT by Elsie (Heck is where people, who don't believe in Gosh, think they are not going...)
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To: urbanpovertylawcenter

Government is basically just a legalized version of organized crime...or is it an organized version of legalized crime? I can never remember which is which.


41 posted on 03/25/2013 6:06:20 PM PDT by RipSawyer (I was born on Earth, what planet is this?)
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To: sodpoodle

Actually I think social security SHOULD be called an entitlement! You paid for it and you should be “entitled” to it. What I think is absurd is calling food stamps and such entitlements, no one should be entitled to receive them.


42 posted on 03/25/2013 6:10:12 PM PDT by RipSawyer (I was born on Earth, what planet is this?)
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To: Jim Noble

“The fact is, Medicare (which remains massively popular, even around here) has killed the system - it just took 40 years to die.”
//////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

I agree totally and I am probably the only person who recalls this but very soon after Medicare went into effect a report came out saying that a person who went into the hospital under medicare would come out owing a copay greater than the entire bill would have been before Medicare. Medicare in reality did little or nothing to help the people it was supposed to help but it made a lot of people rich. If there had never been any Medicare or any other form of federal interference in medicine we would never have had a “healthcare crisis”. There was a time when a week in a hospital would mean a large bill but it did not consume a year or two of an average person’s income. I clearly remember when I thought a hospital room that cost $32. a day was simply outrageous. In those days a person who woke up feeling sick could go to the doctor’s waiting room and be treated within a couple of hours without an appointment and pay $5. or so for the visit, not a copay, the entire charge.

The “healthcare crisis” is entirely a creation of the federal government and the feds are now convinced that they must destroy the healthcare system in order to save it! The end result will be no real healthcare for any but a tiny elite and the rest will be forced to pay large fines for not participating in a fake system that offers nothing to the participant except the opportunity to die of “complications”. The thing I find most amazing is that so many “adults” actually believed that it was a good idea to turn health care over to the feds. Why can people never learn that the federal government thrives by creating chaos, not by solving problems?


43 posted on 03/25/2013 6:44:21 PM PDT by RipSawyer (I was born on Earth, what planet is this?)
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To: sport

Some people are starting to realize that they can do a lot to take care of their own health and some have not been to see a “medical professional” in many years. I suppose at some point the government will find it necessary to mandate that people see a doctor at least twice a year.


44 posted on 03/25/2013 6:47:22 PM PDT by RipSawyer (I was born on Earth, what planet is this?)
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