Home | About | Donate

The GOP’s Strategy for Obamacare? Repeal and Run


#1

The GOP’s Strategy for Obamacare? Repeal and Run.

Elizabeth Warren

For eight years, Republicans in Congress have complained about health care in America, heaping most of the blame on President Obama. Meanwhile, they’ve hung out on the sidelines making doomsday predictions and cheering every stumble, but refusing to lift a finger to actually improve our health care system.


#2

Our awesome new president elect just gave interviews saying awesome stuff. We are all going to have insurance! It will be cheaper and better! We are going to get rid of Obamacare! No single payer–he’s against that. Medicare will negotiate drug prices! Markets work! We will learn about his plan soon!

I’m guessing he’s just throwing words out there. His future HHS Secretary’s “plan” is basically all about wrecking Medicaid. If you want to be hopeful, be my guest.

Just want to add, he can say whatever he wants, but if he appoints people to the courts that are hostile to government intervention on any level, then this is really just him spouting words.


#3

Not only does the GOP not have a strategy for replacing the ACA, they haven’t even considered how to handle the ramifications of their actions. The blow-back is just getting started…


#4

No mention by Warren about the need for single payer. I prefer the term “universal healthcare” because it is a more inclusive term that also leaves the term “payer” absent introducing the reader the concept of ‘no direct payments’ by individuals in that all the government takes on sole responsibility to deal with heath care costs. By contrast ‘single payer’ immediately invokes the idea of individual premiums where each citizen must fork out a minimum amount (like the ACA) to insure coverage. But in developed countries the citizenry actually pays NO PREMIUMS such as in Canada, Japan, Australia or most European countries.
As Warren stated, the Massachusetts system is far from perfect and involves insurers, health care companies and businesses. In a proper government run healthcare system, there would be no insurers (except the government), no healthcare companies and no businesses. Instead all services would be owned and operated by the public interest (us!) removing the profit motive all together.
No country that ever introduced universal healthcare, has had a public that wanted to ‘repeal’ it afterwards. That alone should tell everyone that no other viable alternative exists. But to prepare to do battle with Wall Street over this basic concept, the 99% will require a greater effort than the United States used in WW11 to defeat the Axis Powers. It will be brutal, but a victory for humanity.


#5

Republicans are allergic to bipartisanship. Please stop groveling before Mammon. It is a systemic problem. Conservatives, Republican and Neoliberal Democrats alike behave like stupid, reactionary, beasts, drunk with power and driven by fear, superstition and greed.

Oligarchs set up our system of government to remain in power forever by amassing all the peoples wealth and labor. The “unproductive” or dangerous to the system, they impoverish, imprison, torture and kill. We need systemic change. Until the money and revolving doors are out of politics, we are wasting time and resources pecking around the problem.

Why conservatives can’t govern:
http://www.alternet.org/story/37947/why_conservatives_can’t_govern


#6

Thanks natureboy, it’s important to link conservatives and neoliberal democrats right now as progressives realign into something new, powerful and different…


#7

My son lives in Canada. He says taxes there are really high–because of their healthcare system. I explained that that may be so, but costs like premiums, co-pays, high drug prices, etc. would balance out that issue. The problem is, here in the U.S., anytime anyone mentions “higher taxes,” everyone freaks out!


#8

Yes! If you add up everything we pay taxes on the average tax is really not too far removed from what they are paying in more civilized countries. The kicker is that those countries provide universal healthcare and “real” retirement benefits. Imagine a life free of health and retirement worries. No wonder the rest of the developed world is healthier and saner than the US.


#9

I left the USA after Bush The Lesser was appointed. And I am forever grateful to my new adopted country for taking me in. So I wasn’t around for the implementation of ObamaCare. I often get asked about its specifics. The only thing I know is that every individual is REQUIRED by law to purchase private health insurance from insurance exchanges. And if they don’t, they get fined. I’ve also read that many young people choose not to buy insurance because paying the fine is cheaper than paying the premium. I’ve also read that the programme was implemented with no restrictions on the insurance companies for how much they can raise premiums or deductibles, when they can drop people, when they change what’s covered, etc.

From the outside, Obamacare seems like it’s not all that helpful - just another transfer of money from the middle class and working poor to the corporate insurance industry. And so its repeal may not be, if I’m correct about the above, such a bad thing (and no, I am no Trump supporter). It’s what replaces it that’s going to be the problem. And this is what I tell people who ask.

Am I right about it? Also, one question was asked that I couldn’t answer. What is the enforcement mechanism? How does the gov’t know whether you’ve purchased private insurance or not? Do you have to declare it on your tax returns? And how does the gov’t collect the fines - garnish it from your wages? And what about all those people who don’t file a tax return - do they get fined?

Thanks for any information.


#10

Right on some points, wrong on others. The law mandates all people have coverage or face a penalty. In return, insurance cannot discriminate against people with preexisting conditions; cannot be dropped (guaranteed coverage); and must meet certain baseline health requirements. Poor folks are auto-enrolled in Medicaid (assuming the state expanded Medicaid coverage) while others who purchase insurance individually (not covered by employers) receive a subsidy to do so if they are beneath a certain income level. Older folks are covered by Medicare.

That’s a quick 1-2-3 of the law.


#12

Nobody wants to pay taxes, but if you live in this country it is part of being a citizen.


#13

I agree. Our taxes are supposed to be the means by which we all add to the pot to help each other and pay for the stuff we ALL need!


#14

They had at least six years to come up with a plan to tweak ACA. This is just to make a black president look bad. Aren’t they mature?


#15

Yet they funnel their money to the Cayman Islands.


#16

Yes…and how is it that they (the elite) have never been labeled as traitors? But they can label someone like Edward Snowden a traitor for calling them out on their dirty ways!


#17

The GOP wants us all sick. Societies that are sick are easier to control. That’s all they care about: power, money, and control. And every year it gets worse and worse. They want to exploit us for our labor, and then when our usefulness is used up, they want us to roll over into a ditch and die.


#18

Gosh, Liz, too bad you didn’t help out Bernie, and us, when it was time.

You’d be fighting a whole different fight now.


#19

Too true. An orange word spout, that’s it. Reagan was a B movie actor, this Reagan Retread is a B TV reality show, the GOP is fascinating how it reinvents itself, isn’t it.

But most interesting of all, all this ACA uproar has never had anything at all to do with healthcare OR insurance.

It is ALL about JOB-LOCK. When ACA passed, for the first time in 240 years of U.S. history we moved out of our Slave Economy, as MLK rightly called it.

The first blow against wage slavery was struck when the job security of us wage slaves was no longer shackled to our health insurance, such as it is.

When a worker could change jobs and keep her insurance, the GOP was losing its iron grip on us slaves, and they’ve been willing and able to stop the world to prevent that.

Oh, no, we mustn’t have THAT.

Not in the land of the free and the home of the brave. (Code, for them, for “The Land of the Me and the Home of the Slave.”)


#20

I wouldn’t maybe throw around slavery as much, but you hit the head on the job lock issue. That’s another first Obamacare at least offers, though not to the extent I think we’d all like.


#21

Of course it’s not to any decent extent, of what we want or rather need, but it was the first baby step, and now they want to cut off its itsy bitsy toes.

As far as throwing slavery into the mix, it IS the mix, and I can say that from experience, of living 4 slavery-free years in Paris.

It is never taught in the schools, so Americans (of the Northern persuasion that is) will have to come individually to their own epiphany, on which I base my comment, that our country’s entire charter, from its deep state, the real deal, was: “It’s about the slavery, stupid.” Or we might update our fellow citizens, “It’s about the (slave) economy, stupid!”. To expand on Bubba’s slogan.

In 1772, Lord Mansfield of the King’s Bench court in London, heard the case of Somerset v. Stewart. Stewart, a slaver, had apprehended Somerset in England and was going to “return” him to his shackles in So. Carolina, if memory serves. But British abolitionists got an Injunction and the case was heard.

After a very long deliberation, Lord Mansfield said that he found no precedent in English common law or cases that permitted the appropriation of human beings as chattel. He opined that such a thing could only be created by positive law, i.e., an act of Parliament. And that wasn’t about to happen. He wrote his decision famously, “The air of England is too pure for a slave to breathe.”

The wheels were set in motion to end slavery in the colonies, by extension of his judgment.

Within a NY minute of the news crossing “The Pond” the eventual signers of the Constitution, all but a handful slave owners and rich, locked arms in revolt against the tax, not on Tea, that was the cosmetic cover, but on labor.

What civilized countries would call “wages” or, more proactively, “a paycheck”.

If you consider the way GOP spins everything they do to look principled and righteous, you’ll see that the spin back then was really just the same, all too familiar.

And it is that Slavery Jones of our rich folk that is currently suffering a full relapse!

You see, unlike civilized countries, our fat cats just can’t kick the slaver habit, they just reinvent it, and it shadows everything we’ve done.

The prosecution rests its case…

(Cue Law and Order Meme music motif.)

“Man wouldn’t pay you if he didn’t have to.”. -Chris Rock

“Oh yes, I say it plain,
America never was
America to me.
And yet I swear this oath,
America shall be.”

—Langston Hughes