November 14th, 2013

And here the insurance companies thought…

…the crocodile would eat them last.

Turned out they were wrong. But they have a few teeth of their own.

Either Obama knows zero about how the insurance business works, or his plan was to destroy it anyway, or he doesn’t much care either way because he will just say whatever he thinks is most likely to spare his own hide. Or perhaps all three, which is my leading theory.

52 Responses to “And here the insurance companies thought…”

  1. JThoits Says:

    I don’t think he understands how the insurance industry works……and he obviously feels that health care is a right and not a commodity. The chickens seem to be coming home to roost.

  2. Mrs Whatsit Says:

    His understanding of insurance was painfully revealed shortly before Obamacare passed when he “explained” to Congressional Republicans how a nasty selfish car insurance company had refused to pay for property damage to his beater car when he was a young man — when all he had purchased was the minimum LIABILITY insurance required by law. I still find it almost impossible to believe that he actually said these things, as a President of the United States lecturing legislators about the insurance industry — but he did. He complained that the car insurer had only provided him with the minimum coverage required by law — clearly believing that this showed how stingy and evil the insurer was — and genuinely did not seem to understand that this resulted from HIS decision to purchase only the coverage that the law required HIM to buy, and not to spend extra money on collision coverage – – which he apparently could not distinguish from liability coverage. It was stunning.

    And from what he did and said today — for instance, “What we’re also discovering is that insurance is complicated to buy” — (No, really? Do tell!) it does not appear that he has learned much of anything in the interim.

  3. Lizzy Says:

    Honestly, I don’t think he understands how business works. He expects insurance companies to just turn on a dime to extricate him from the political fall-out of his disastrous law. Probably never occurred to him that this is not only impossible, but likely financially detrimental.
    He actually said something like, “we are discovering how complex health insurance is.” Ya think?

  4. assemblerhead Says:

    @neo-neocon

    Or perhaps all three, which is my leading theory.

    I think you are right.

  5. Doom Says:

    It’s very difficult to have sympathy for a business that sold it’s soul, and customers, for thirty silver pieces. They looked at what conservatives offered, comprehensive reform, allowing insurance purchase across state lines, tort reform, and then at what liberals promised. They supported what they wanted, thinking it was in their best interest. They bet on the wrong horse. I hope the price is high enough that they, and other industries, think twice next time. Let the CEO heads begin to roll.

    I can dream.

  6. Mitsu Says:

    >tort reform

    Tort reform has not had an impact on insurance rates in Texas and it isn’t a significant factor in health care costs — it’s a red herring.

    Republican “plans” to deal with this would not solve the problem of rescission nor the problem of preexisting conditions. Selling insurance across state lines doesn’t solve it, and introduces a host of new problems.

  7. neo-neocon Says:

    Doom:

    I’m not saying the insurance companies have purity of heart, but…the Republican plan wasn’t going to pass, and the Democratic one was. The Democrats controlled both houses of Congress. So I think the insurance companies went along because they thought if they didn’t play ball, even worse could happen (such as a public option, which only failed by one Senate vote, Lieberman, and would have basically put most of them out of the health insurance business). Remember also it was relatively early in Obama’s first term and they probably didn’t have a sense of the sort of betrayal he was capable of (although they should have, even then).

    What’s more, I’m not at all sure they all went along. Aren’t there a number of insurance companies that have refused to be on the exchanges because they thought it too risky? See this article.

  8. kaba Says:

    Forget business in general and insurance in particular. What we have here is a Constitutional Law Professor who doesn’t seem to understand that even a President doesn’t have the authority to give a major industry a pass on a significant issue of law.

  9. Mrs Whatsit Says:

    Mitsu, you should read Neo’s post from a day or two ago and the articles linked within it about the rarity of rescission.
    http://neoneocon.com/2013/11/13/obamacare-lie-well-ive-lost-count-of-the-number/

    As the linked articles point out, this awful picture liberals like to paint about insurers dumping sick people whenever they felt like it before Obamacare came to the rescue it is a myth. Insurance is intensely regulated at the state level (and still is, even with Obamacare — which is why Obama can’t just wave his hand and allow insurers to reissue policies that have now been cancelled in compliance with the various state laws and regulations that actually control the insurers’ ability to do that). One of the most strictly-regulated aspects, for obvious reasons, is the ability to cancel or refuse to renew policies. Federal legislation was not needed to solve the problem of rescission. If it was a problem anywhere — and to my knowledge, it wasn’t — the problem could have been solved with better rules in those few states while leaving the majority of states to keep right on doing fine on their own.

  10. Matt_SE Says:

    @Doom

    I look at businesses like sharks: they serve a useful purpose, but they aren’t your friends.
    And given the behavior of companies (which is to say, the individuals that control them) in the industrial revolution, it’s easy to see how they would sell the citizens out for a guaranteed profit.
    Corruption is a universal trait, especially when you have someone pushing as hard as Obama.

    @kaba

    I think he studied Constitutional Law more for opposition research.

  11. Beverly Says:

    Hoo-boy. The Dems’ butts are pinching pieces out of their seats.

    I just got a robocall from Carolyn Maloney (NYC) saying she’s holding a telephone Town Hall at 8:00 tonight. In a very chirpy tone of voice.

    This is unprecedented — I’ve lived here 30 years, and I’ve Never been invited to any Town Hall gathering by any New York pol, let alone one at such short notice.

    The Repubs had better man up and take advantage of this — the enemy is reeling.

  12. Beverly Says:

    I see the WashPo idiot is still pushing the lie that the Obamacare garbage is “more robust.”

    Pitchforks, flambeaux….

  13. Steve Says:

    Mrs Whatsit, you’re wasting your time on Mitsu. He just mouths the dem talking points.

  14. gs Says:

    Howard Dean, yes, Howard Dean, was saying he isn’t sure the President has legal authority to allow the cancellations to be revoked.

    Iirc, in his swing vote upholding Obamacare, John Roberts said it was not the job of SCOTUS to rectify bad legislation, only to rule on constitutionality. That statement should be put to the test.

    Obama’s action should be litigated.

  15. assemblerhead Says:

    @Mitsu

    Off Topic as usual. You are the ‘red herring’.

    Rep. Tom Price has a bill introduced and you have no idea what is in it. No mention of ‘tort reform’.

    You supervisor needs to put you on a shorter leash.

    And the ‘bullet points to spam’ assigned to you are so very obvious.

  16. Beverly Says:

    About insurance as a business: My father was an insurance company executive (V.P.) who retired 20 years ago. He’s got a few things to say about all this.

    –The insurance business was competitive. Profit margins, contrary to Leftwing propaganda, were around 4 – 5%. Why? because your competitor could undercut you and take your customers.

    –The insurance business was accountable. If a company behaved badly, people and corporations would drop it like a rotten egg. Why? that old competition thing again.

    –“Catastrophic plans” is the new name for what they used to call “major medical” insurance, meaning insurance for major medical procedures only: accidents, cancer, etc. Pay as you go for stuff like hangnails. And was, and is, a lot cheaper than the Total World coverage the industry shifted to later, again because corporations were competing in what benefits they offered.

    What he calls the Obamacare stuff? “a total nightmare. Worse than any nightmare I could imagine!”

    If anyone knows a way to avoid the Govt. Hellcare in NYC, I beg you, please let me know. None of my docs will take it, and the deductibles and cost-sharing will ruin me.

  17. Mrs Whatsit Says:

    I’d also like to talk about the larger policy problem going on here: that is, Obama’s astounding disregard of the rule of law and the inability of anybody to do anything about it. Although it is his Constitutional duty to enforce the law (and Congress’s to pass the laws and the courts to iinsunterpret it) he does so only when it’s politically expedient. He does not see the Executive as an equal branch of government –he sees himself as above the other two branches, able to sneer at the Supreme Court as an “unelected” group who would “somehow” invalidate legislation on the one hand, and disregard Congress on the other by selectively enforcing only the laws he wants, on immigration, health care or whatever else, only in the ways he wants to. So, today, who cares what the law says about what policies must cover in 2014? King Obama says he’s postponing that rule — just because — and how can anyone challenge him?

    The terrible truth being exposed here is that the President can arrogate to himself as much power as he wants, in complete disregard of the Constitution and his oath of office, and short of impeachment — a political impossibility in most cases — there’s no way to stop him. No matter how this turns out in the short term with this particular President, the damage to the rule of law and to our Constitutional system is permanent. Liberals who applaud Obama’s lawless ways seem to forget that not all presidents will be liberals. No matter what the political persuasion of our future Presidents, Obama’s legacy will leave all of them freer to grab for power in any way they judge politically expedient, at the expense of the balance of powers at the heart of our Constitutional system that was supposed to protect us from exactly this kind of monarchical power grab by one individual.

    Yes, I’m a little upset. 😉

  18. Mrs Whatsit Says:

    Oh my. iinsunterpret = interpret

  19. Mitsu Says:

    The really incredible thing here is that you guys pretty much complain regardless of what Obama does — if the ACA cancels policies, that’s an outrage, and if he eases up on the regs, that’s also an outrage. Except you’re forgetting one little thing — the Republican legislation in the House would have been FAR more sweeping than the administrative relaxation of the requirements that Obama just announced. That would have grandfathered in all of the policies, and furthermore would have even opened up the old policies to new signups! Yes, if Obama “doesn’t understand the insurance market” as you guys seem to believe, then what about the House Republicans that were pressing for (and are still pressing for) a MUCH more radical shift in the laws and regulations, here at the last minute?

    There’s no question that this issue should have been litigated years ago and resolved before, in time for insurers to adjust. But the appropriate response now is to give flexibility to states and insurers to do what they think works best.

    As for rescission — Neo post is simply in error. She is quoting one conservative economist. Rescission is well-documented to have been widespread among at least some companies — famously, California Blue Cross, which had to reinstate thousands of policies in the wake of investigations by the Los Angeles Times. State regulators did not catch on to this until many years of this policy having been in effect:

    http://www.reportingonhealth.org/resources/lessons/health-insurance-rescissions-how-one-story-led-insurance-reform

    It was not, as Neo’s post implies, a scandal based on just a few women. It did affect only in the tens of thousands (a House investigation showed that three large insurers rescinded about 20,000 policies over 5 years — that’s not “a few”).

  20. neo-neocon Says:

    kaba:

    Oh, I think he knows that he doesn’t have the authority, but he also knows that he does have the authority if no one has the cojones to stop him.

    How many divisions does the Pope have?

  21. blert Says:

    Mrs Whatsit Says..

    “only when it’s politically expedient.”

    That should read: only when it’s compelled or incidental to his ambits.

  22. Mrs Whatsit Says:

    Who said the Republican legislation would be a good idea? Not I — I’m on record a few comments down arguing against it. You’re not going to be able to defend Obama by pointing off to the side and yelling “Republicans! Look! Republicans!” Yes, it’s true that I and many other people still capable of rational thought are opposed to pretty much everything Obama has done with regard to Obamacare because nearly all of it is wrongheaded and foolish. That, yes, includes 1) the requirements Obamacare imposed on insurance in the first place 2) the grandfathering regulations that forced people out of their old policies while the President first lied that this wasn’t going to happen and later, that is happening because the old policies were “substandard” when in fact it is happening in order to funnel premium dollars into the exchanges 3) this ridiculous, wrong-headed effort to close the barn door after the horse is gone by changing course now, after the old policies are gone, the new policies are in place and the problems of money-funneling and adverse selection are worse than ever because of the botched roll out. You want to tell me why I SHOULD support any of this, Mitsu? I’ve been asking you for weeks, and you have yet to provide any kind of rational answer.

  23. Mrs Whatsit Says:

    Steve, I am regularly told that I waste my time by debating Mitsu. That would be true if I were trying to change his mind, but I’m not — I’ve been debating him for years now and fully understand that he is so deeply entrenched in his own prejudices that he couldn’t think differently if he tried, which he won’t. I’m just exposing his irrationality to the light, that’s all. when some of us do this, he exposes more and more of it, then eventually gives up and either changes the subject or goes away for a while. It’s very predictable. And it’s kinda fun.

  24. Mitsu Says:

    >You want to tell me why I SHOULD support any of this, Mitsu?

    As I’ve said many times before, there are bound to be problems with details of this law like there are problems with the details of any law this complex. But as for why you should support any of this, the reasons are quite simple. As I’ve tried to argue elsewhere, there are a number of significant problems with the system we had before, very briefly we had a very large number of uninsured people (causing roughly 40,000 premature deaths per year, according to one study), self-employed people with preexisting conditions often could not get health insurance at any price, self-employed people had difficulty getting group health rates, health insurance costs in our country are the highest per capita by far and we only get average results, health care costs were skyrocketing at twice the rate of inflation for most of the last few decades, and there was the quite real problem of rescission.

    There are, as far as I can tell, only three credible approaches to dealing with these problems, in toto — nationalized health care like the NHS, a mostly single-payer system like France, or some version of regulated private insurance like Massachusetts, Switzerland, etc.

    It’s obvious that if you force insurers to cover people with preexisting conditions, you have to have some kind of tax penalty or mandate to prevent an adverse selection problem from blowing up insurance rates as they did in New York.

    So, unless you go single payer or nationalized health care, the general outline of a sensible law to deal with these problems includes some kind of penalty for not having insurance, regulations about minimum standards for policies, preventing insurers from denying applications because of preexisting conditions, and subsidies for low-income families and individuals. If you can come up with an alternative that works, then I’d love to hear it. “Tort reform” and “buying insurance across state lines” doesn’t do it.

    Or, you could say you don’t care about those problems and would just prefer to leave things as they were. I think that’s ridiculous, myself.

    This is not to say I don’t think there could be other plans that could also improve coverage — like Heritage’s original idea of subsidized catastrophic coverage so individuals and families wouldn’t go bankrupt if one of them gets cancer or something like that, but leaving the rest of the market the way it was. There’s reasonable debate to be had there.

    But I really don’t see your wild objections to Obamacare as it stands. As I’ve said before a law like it has already passed in MA and has been in operation there for years with no disasters. The basic framework is proven to work. It does what it says it is going to do — cover more people, without destroying the health care system or creating huge wait times and so on. That’s a good thing, in my view.

  25. kaba Says:

    A little premature there Mitsu. Let us wait a few years before we declare that Obamacare hasn’t destroyed the health care system.There are probably 5 million Americans tonight that would tell you that it has destroyed their health care already. And many more former full-time employees who are missing both good health care and a full time job as a result of Obamacare.

    You leftist/liberals just can’t grasp the simple economic principle that you will never reduce/eliminate poverty by subsidizing it.

  26. neo-neocon Says:

    Mrs Whatsit:

    Chasing after an answer from Mitsu is like trying to catch mercury.

    Hey, let’s have a musical interlude:

  27. Mrs Whatsit Says:

    The Obamacare structure you describe with such approval has the seeds of its own destruction built into it — which is the reason for my “wild” opposition. As designed, it will necessarily drive up health care costs, thereby driving up the costs of coverage, thereby driving people out of their insurance and requiring more intervention, ad infinitum. As long as you separate people from knowledge of the cost of health care by forcing insurers to pay for everything, and then and insulate insurers and providers from competition that might lower prices at their level by mandating one-size-fits-all coverage for everything — costs will go up and up, and the problem will get worse and worse and never be solved until it all falls apart.

    You contradicted yourself in your answer, first saying you could think of only three possibilities and later saying you didn’t rule out other possibilities — such as the one that I think might actually help. This would be catastrophic coverage to stave off bankruptcy, with subsidies for those who can’t afford it, combined with incentives such as tax credits to assist people in creating health savings accounts to cover predictable, routine costs for things like well-child visits, contraception — that is, the things that Obamacare now pretends are free-free-FREE! – thus, necessarily, making them all more expensive for everyone, since no one has to think about what they cost and no one can compete to offer them more efficiently. It wouldn’t be perfect, but it might do two things at once — help cover the uninsured and hold down the cost curve — while avoiding the market chaos and regulatory overburden created by Obamacare (can you remember how many new federal agencies are being created to implement it? I can’t remember myself, exactly, but it’s not a small number and the implementation costs are not likely to be anything but humongous, given that it’s government with no profit/competitive motive for efficiency.) But after all, why do something relatively simple that targets assistance at those who need it while leaving most people alone to go on doing fine, pretty much the way they were before — when you could interfere with everybody whether they asked you to or not, significantly lower the freedom and independence of every American, and cause chaos in an industry that makes up 1/6 of the economy?

  28. blert Says:

    Mitsu is an innocent. Tragic.

    The mere interruption of cash flow through the medical-pharma cartel will be a sight to behold.

    For the funding overwhelmingly comes via privately funded plans. These pick up the slack, the short fall, in Medicare and Medicaid — which are massively cross-subsidized even now.

    This is done via price rate discounts that the single-payer/ monopsonist endows itself with. Thusly, Medicaid pays off 34 cents on the dollar; Medicare pays off 48 cents on the dollar. These figures shift across procedures, the counties, and time.

    So, the staggering interruption that is dead ahead is going to cause grief to the medical-pharma cartel. The cash flow pipeline has just been legally destroyed.

    This is rather like having your aorta severed. Patching it up even a couple of hours later is too late, unless reanimation is employed.

    What’s going to happen is that the hospitals/ clinics will be absolutely HAMMERED. Since most doctors vote Democrat, (medical college politics) Barry will have spiked a seriously important donor group.

    It’s my opinion that these people, in their millions, have absolutely no contemplation as to how fast and far their incomes are going to fall.

    The missing cash is going to pile up in the laps of the healthy — now totally frustrated that they can’t throw their cash flow into medical plans.

    Expect to see a FANTASTIC surge in medical service ‘imports’ as Americans, those now with the money, take all of their action to Chile and other such climes. Anything other than a panic situation will be treated afar.

    Emergencies will still be dumped on the ‘system’ — to break it down further.

    =======

    All of the above is classic Gonnabee. The kind of guy who throws a road flare into an ammo bunker and demands a product recall… blame shifting to the utmost.

    That’s our boy. Arrested development!

  29. jms Says:

    Ask a conservative what health insurance is for, and they’ll tell you that it’s to spread the risk of unaffordable medical expenses among large groups of people. Ask a liberal what health insurance is for, and they’ll tell you that it’s supposed to pay all their medical bills. To a conservative, a “good” plan is the kind of plan that costs as little as possible and you only collect from if you get cancer or get hit by a truck. To a liberal, a “good” plan is one that covers every doctors visit, every prescription, birth control, everything, and a catastrophic plan is the sort of worthless “junk” plan that doesn’t pay anything unless you get hit by a truck.

    There can be no consensus on what a good health plan is when there is such a wide gulf between what people expect a health plan to be.

  30. Don Carlos Says:

    Obamacare became law three years ago. No one in Congress, Dem or Rep, read the entire bill of some 2700 pages before it was passed by the Dems.
    In the years that have followed, has anyone in a position of responsibility read the damn thing? Or at least their staffers? Other than those in the insurance business, of course.
    The events of past weeks seem to have surprised the Repubs as much as the Dems.

    On the whole, it strikes me as government by idiocy. And we are surprised when Obama doesn’t follow the rules? He should’ve been impeached and removed long ago.

  31. blert Says:

    I further expect that a spontaneous outbreak of the Liverpool Care Pathway to erupt in these United States.

    Triage is going to be brutal.

    While ultra harsh on humanity it does have a positive economic upside.

    Think of the money to be saved by abandoning the elderly.

    The Russians did it en masse in the late 1990’s. In a few short years all of the government’s pensioner problems simply melted away.

  32. kaba Says:

    Blert,
    My daughter-in-law is a nurse in the Philippines. They are being prepared for an influx of medical tourism from the US.

  33. Lizzy Says:

    Anyone else remember Obama threatening the CEOs of 13 of the largest US banks by saying, “My administration is the only thing between you and the pitchforks?” I think today’s press conference was Obama stepping aside and directing the pitchforks directly at health insurers. I doubt he really cares whether or not his extralegal fix will actually work, he’s just desperate to deflect the blame.

    While the health insurance companies are not blameless, I can only imagine the amount of bullying and threatening they received from Obama and other Dems. They likely saw the writing on the wall with Dem majorities in the House and Senate, and were given a similar threat: work with us now or we’ll destroy you after this is enacted. Probably figured that it was preferable to be at the table and have a hand in it than to be left behind. They made the wrong choice.

    I really hope that these people start talking to the press. I think some of the doomed legislators might start squealing once they realize he won’t actually rescue them. I’d really love to know how this unprecedented failure of a law was hoisted on us.

  34. Doom Says:

    Neo-Neo,

    Fair enough, if I think a bit too generous to my too stingy. Yeah, but I think they could have bucked the system a bit more strongly.

    Matt_SE,

    As to playing shark to victim, or potential victim, true. And, really, I wouldn’t change that, only put reasonable limits on both sides. It is, and is supposed to be, an antagonistic tangle… this thing we call commerce. But when the shark beeches itself in the process… I have to think something is really wrong.

  35. Charles Says:

    In my experience, “community organizers” don’t understand much about how anything works, let alone insurance. Of course, that doesn’t mean that they don’t want to destroy it.

  36. gpc31 Says:

    Blert, you wrote:
    “The mere interruption of cash flow through the medical-pharma cartel will be a sight to behold….
    What’s going to happen is that the hospitals/ clinics will be absolutely HAMMERED. Since most doctors vote Democrat, (medical college politics) Barry will have spiked a seriously important donor group.

    It’s my opinion that these people, in their millions, have absolutely no contemplation as to how fast and far their incomes are going to fall.”

    I’m pretty sure you’re right on the likely consequences of interrupting cash flow, but I can tell you with 100% certainty that you are entirely correct that medical pharma cartel will be blindsided. My wife has worked at a high level for two of the top medical schools and knows everyone in the top twenty.

    I have been absolutely flabbergasted over the last 6 years at the med schools’ blithe ignorance of the implications of health care reform. They obsess over minute shifts in the US News & World rankings while ignoring the Obamacare asteroid hurtling at them.

    If there was ever a case study that cried out for an unemployed game theorist or eager beaver post doc, it would be the second order effects of Obamacare on medical innovation and the supply of doctors. But no, not one dean has seen fit to consult anybody.

    As Henry Hazlitt said, “The art of economics consists in looking not merely at the immediate but at the longer effects of any act or policy; it consists in tracing the consequences of that policy not merely for one group but for all groups.”

    So much for the David Cutlers or Jonathan Grubers of the world. Brilliant, partisan hacks.

    Will the Democrats in the med school complex ever connect cause and effect in the loss of their future income? For the 50 and over crowd, no. Younger doctors and researchers, maybe.

  37. Lizzy Says:

    The director of the Virginia Medical Center in Arlington, VA had an hour-long interview w/C-SPAN when Obamacare was in play (he’s also a heart surgeon, not just an administrator). He basically said that the two biggest costs for the hospital are their staff and medical technology. To save money the hospital would cut back on the tech before staff, such as cutting back on the number of new MRI machines purchased, or waiting longer to upgrade to the latest model. This would inevitably lead to these manufacturers investing less in new/updated technology (or worse, going out of business), thus slowing down advances/availability of the latest equipment. Hard to believe he’s the only one who saw this as a real possibility, but I haven’t heard or seen any other medical professional mention this since all of this started.

    Meanwhile, Britain’s NHS is notorious for having hospitals with limited and seriously outdated equipment. Add to that stories of substandard cleanliness, which causes many patients to get infections during their stay (but, hey, they have to find cost savings somewhere, right?).

  38. blert Says:

    Lizzy…

    America last saw this with NASA. During the LBJ years everything seemed to be just around the corner.

    Then came Nixon — and budget reversals, profound.

    The inventors simply split.

    (Many went into medical devices, BTW)

    If there is ONE common denominator of non-American medical provision it’s the lack of American invented medical technology. While it’s the most cost-effective outlay… it has no local political support. EVERY nation on Earth rations such expensive imports.

    Hence, wait times for CT scans — the ones ON TAP — are MONTHS in the waiting — even in Canada! BTW, the cost per patient-scan has dropped from $1000 to $200. The quality of the digitized image has gone straight up.

    Those evil capitalists — look what they’ve wrought!

  39. Promethea Says:

    A smart country would make a big point of developing a huge medical tourism complex. Costa Rica? Mexico? Israel? the Philippines? Australia?

    Of course, Canada would be the perfect place if they could manage it despite their insane socialized medicine laws. Maybe Canada could develop a special “foreigners only” medical complex in Toronto where Americans could go to get the very best care without Obamacare trying to kill them because they’re not on the approved-to-live list of the Dr. Mengele/Ezekiel Emanuel-types who want to kill us if they don’t like us (for some reason or another).

    Not grammatical, I know, but I hope I’ve made my point. I’m an old white woman so I know I’m marked for liquidation. Maybe I can bribe my way to a few more years of life in a medical tourism country.

  40. Lurker Says:

    I’m looking forward to Thanksgiving. I can’t wait to rub my lib relatives noses in this. It’s like watching the Hindenburg. Everything these bozos do is spreading the flames. This is hysterically funny. Real Monty Python stuff. Particularly the unlimited security risks.

  41. blert Says:

    Liverpool Care Pathway = LCP = Life Cessation Protocol…

    Get it?

    Step on the carousel folks.

    Orwellian mendaciousness.

  42. blert Says:

    Promethea…

    Grenada has two American staffed medical colleges. They were the ones that inspired Reagan’s rescue, remember?

    Chile, Costa Rica and Israel are already set to go. Now that air fares are so cheap, it’s possible to fly to Chile and get dental work done — on the inexpensive — as in 85% off American dental cartel prices.

    Because of the rampant lawlessness in Mexico, I don’t see it taking off.

    These possibilities would seem entirely directed at the retired American. One could imagine a ‘tourist trip’ that permits crowns, root canals… the works… spaced inside the classic tourist jaunt. Chile would really swing into action during American winters/Chilean summers.

    Grenada is a short hop from Florida, an endless source of custom.

  43. Mrs Whatsit Says:

    Thinking about this overnight . . . assuming the states and the insurers manage to find ways to extend all those canceled policies for a year, now they will all expire at the same time that the employer mandate kicks in and all the group policies start getting canceled.

    And that is also when most people are going to discover that this problem is not limited to the individual market and that Obama has been piling more lies upon more lies upon all those previous “you can keep it” lies, all this time, in insisting that it is, insisting that he was talking about people in employer-sponsored policies, insisting that problems limited to the individual market made the cancellations necessary — all of it lies, since the change/grandfather rules apply to ALL policies and will hit the rest of us next year. Some people know that now, but not many. What’s going to happen when everybody figures it out?

  44. assemblerhead Says:

    @Mrs Whatsit

    Chaos. Might even be some rioting. It will be ugly. The Obama Zombies will finally start to think.

    The rest of us will be desperately trying to survive.

  45. Ymarsakar Says:

    If the zombies start to think, they’ll reprocess them in a “vacation” like they did with Mitsu, and they’ll come out looking solidly Obamacan.

  46. Matt_SE Says:

    As Boehner (of all people) said, “there’s no way to fix this.” Obamacare cannot function unless it affects tens of millions of people.
    There’s no way to hide the damage. No pile of mashed potatoes large enough to cover up these veggies.

    The size of the electoral bloodbath will be indicative of how many Americans still have common sense. If it’s a lot, we’re in good shape. Still…it’s a ways off in the future, and “things happen.” I just don’t see a way for Dems to squirm out of it at this point.

  47. blert Says:

    Mrs Whatsit…

    And right in front of the 2014 elections!

    Perfect timing.

    Everything being geared towards the Federal fiscal cycle, which starts October 1 every year. Obviously a sweet month ahead of the balloting.

    Brilliant politics, don’t you think?

  48. Bill West Says:

    Neo,

    This reopens your discussion – Fool or Knave? Is there a third choice: Both?

  49. Bill West Says:

    Well, what a surprise. I went looking for opinions on the President’s fix and found this:

    “Passing the buck

    By “allowing” insurers to reinstate health plans they’ve canceled, the administration effectively hands them the president’s problem. “Whether an individual can keep their current plan will … depend on their insurance company and state insurance commissioner,” the White House explains in a fact sheet. “It will no longer be implementation of the law that is forcing them to buy a new plan.” In other words, don’t blame us if your insurance company canceled your plan to comply with the health care law. The cancellation is now voluntary!”

    The surprise is that this was on the MSNBC site. I think that even they have voted on the Fool or Knave question (above comment), and the President has been voted Knave.

  50. delete.the.alternative Says:

    Supposedly, according to great intellectuals at MIT and Harvard, if you are healthy, you discriminate against unhealthy people.

    Ezekial Emmanual, at least to perceptive people possessing a 1 out of 10 on the scale, has exposed himself as a socialist. It is socialism and it’s really not worth discussing what type or it’s really fascism. Let the true and good conservative scholars do that. We, however, don’t need the exact title to know evil when we see it.

    And evil starts with an accuser. A slanderer. And what words more appropriately describe that piece of shit Obama, Reid, and Pelosi.

  51. Geoffrey Britain Says:

    “What’s going to happen when everybody figures it out?” Mrs Whatsit

    Unfortunately, everybody is not going to figure it out. The question is, will enough people figure it out? Upon that question, may hang the fate of the nation.

    “Reason is poor propaganda when opposed by the yammering, unceasing lies of shrewd, evil and self-serving men. The capacity of the human mind for swallowing nonsense and spewing it forth in violent and repressive action has never yet been plumbed.” R.A. Heinlein

    IMO, any estimate of the left’s chances of success of less than 50/50 is wishful thinking.

    assemblerhead,

    By definition, Zombies are incapable of thinking.

  52. blert Says:

    Folks never forget the information imparted by a kick in the wallet.

    0-care is a ferocious tax beyond anything you’ve known.

    It’s the kind of tax normally imposed ONLY in wartime.

    It’s crushingly deflationary!

    Just you WAIT.

    The fireworks have just begun.

About Me

Previously a lifelong Democrat, born in New York and living in New England, surrounded by liberals on all sides, I've found myself slowly but surely leaving the fold and becoming that dread thing: a neocon.
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