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You Deserve A (Health Control) Break Today

with 11 comments

Via USAToday, McDonalds, Jack-in-the-Box, the State of Massachusetts, along with twenty-six other companies, have obtained waivers from some provisions of the recently enacted Health Control Law.

Tucked into the thousands of pages that, according to Madame Pelosi we had to pass to find out what was in it, were regulations mandating that provided health insurance policies must have minimal coverages.

Seems that McDonalds and other companies effected would regularly supply low-cost, albeit minimal benefit insurance policies to some of their low-wage, part-time, and entry-level employees. New regulations will raise those minimum benefits annually, thus driving up the cost of the policies. Without the waivers, they would not have been able to continue to provide this to their employees.

Says Jessica Santillo, spokeswoman for the Department of Health And Human Services:

The waivers are effective for a year and were granted to insurance plans and companies that showed that employee premiums would rise or that workers would lose coverage without them, Santillo says.

Under that criteria, if carried through, then everyone should fall under exemptions. Every study, every bit of common sense says that everyone’s premiums will rise based on the new law.

Now, I absolutely hate all the Lefties trying to equate mandated health insurance with automobile insurance, because the analogy is false. True, most if not all states mandate you must carry automobile liability insurance, but that’s only true if you choose to operate a motor vehicle on public roads. While it might be difficult to get through modern life without it, you are not required to have a car or drive anywhere.

But, for the purpose of illustration, I will use the comparison here. Since there are some out there who drive without auto insurance, we’re going to overhaul that system, including new mandates. Included in those mandates are minimum coverage amounts for collision and comprehensive, since it’s not fair that liability only won’t pay to repair your car after a crash. (After all, our Dear Leader used that himself during debates on health care.) So starting next year, you’ll have to have collision coverage for $10,000. After that, we’ll increase that minimum annually, until it reaches $25,000.

So what happens when your car is fifteen years old and is worth $1200 (and that’s after you recharge the air conditioner!)? Is that fair to make you have collision coverage for $25,000, thus making your premiums go through the roof? Or would it perhaps be more fair to group similar people, with comparable driving history and type of cars, and then charge premiums accordingly?

As I’ve said from the very beginning, there are many things can, and maybe should be done to the health care system. There were supposedly 30 million or so people who had no insurance. Any business worth their salt would be attempting to find ways to bring in at least some of that 30 million new customers, right? The problem, in my opinion, is largely due to excessive regulations already on the table. Each state has up to now set their own regulations on how companies can operate, and I suspect a lot of those regulations make it very unprofitable to chase after those new customers.

So let’s get rid of this idiotic takeover attempt, and have a real, honest study and discussion on how the existing system can be improved. As these waivers prove, the government will be the one deciding who gets what and for how much. I don’t think very many of us actually want that.

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Written by James Lee

October 7, 2010 at 11:08

Posted in Uncategorized

11 Responses

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  1. James Lee: As I’ve said from the very beginning, there are many things can, and maybe should be done to the health care system.

    The problem is the business model. Health insurers make money by insuring healthy people and not insuring sick people. That’s the incentive. And some people don’t have the money at different points in their lives, so they lose their insurance, often along with loss of a job.

    Most other industrialized nations have some sort of universal coverage, so again, this is not some insoluble problem.

    Zachriel

    October 7, 2010 at 11:33

    • If people got away from this notion that they get it as a “benefit” from their employer, the implication being that its “free” or much cheaper to them than the actual cost of the policy, that takes the loss of job (and the insurance) out of the equation.

      ANY business model is to make money. It doesn’t matter if you are cleaning toilets or building the space shuttle, you have to have a profit at the end of the day. You can say the same thing about other types of insurance, in the end, the company studies numbers and statistics in setting premiums, knowing there will be payouts, and betting they will bring in a bit more than they pay out in benefits or payoffs.

      “Universal” coverage means government control. If there are many private companies competing, you at least have the option of shopping around for a better company. Once the government controls it, you have no further choices, or very limited ones if you do.

      James Lee

      October 7, 2010 at 11:52

  2. The auto insurance analogy fails because the state does NOT require me to have insurance on the damage to my car or body. I am forced to insure against the damage I might cause to another car, its occupants, pedestrians, buildings, telephone poles, or other infrastructure.

    If the state required me to buy comprehensive auto insurance (instead of just liability) then that would be analogous. But even then, it would be the STATE requiring it, not the USGOV. As bad as MA’s “RomneyCare” is, it doesn’t violate the Constitution, because state goverments are allowed to do things Congress can’t do anywhere other than DC (and perhaps VI/PR/GU).

    The Monster

    October 7, 2010 at 11:43

    • Correct! You do a better job at blowing that apart than I did.

      James Lee

      October 7, 2010 at 11:53

  3. James Lee: ANY business model is to make money.

    That’s correct!

    James Lee: It doesn’t matter if you are cleaning toilets or building the space shuttle, you have to have a profit at the end of the day.

    The former thrives on customers happy with their clean toilets. The latter was a government sponsored program, but even then, their incentive was to build rockets that put people into space.

    James Lee: You can say the same thing about other types of insurance, …

    That’s right. Insurance companies make more money by insuring drivers with good safety records.

    James Lee: in the end, the company studies numbers and statistics in setting premiums, knowing there will be payouts, and betting they will bring in a bit more than they pay out in benefits or payoffs.

    That’s right. So it means poor or unhealthy people are avoided by insurers.

    James Lee: “Universal” coverage means government control.

    It does mean government regulation, though it doesn’t have to mean single payer. Nearly every industrialized country has some sort of universal health care coverage, except the U.S. And they spend far less per capita then the U.S. with comparable health results.

    Zachriel

    October 7, 2010 at 12:47

    • Insurance companies make more money by insuring drivers with good safety records.

      No, Insurance companies make more money by accurately assessing the risk involved in a policy, and pricing it so that they collect more money from the people who buy it than they pay out to those who make claims, while also pricing it so that their customers won’t go to another insurer. People with good safety records are less of a risk to pay out, so the competitive pressure to price their policies even lower. Those with poor safety records will have a higher risk, warranting higher premiums to be profitable.

      And they spend far less per capita then [sic] the U.S. with comparable health results.

      That’s because the US pharmaceutical industry uses profits earned here to subsidize operations in countries that don’t pay as much for their products. If we take that away, pharma will invest less in developing drugs, especially “orphan” drugs (like for The Bride of Monster’s chronic condition, Myasthenia Gravis, which don’t represent enough potential patients to make expensive research profitable).

      Your good-intentioned meddling might kill my wife. Now that you know the cost of it, you don’t get credit for good intentions anymore. When the medication she’s taking now to manage her condition doesn’t work anymore, and there’s nothing left for her to try, her death will be on your head.

      The Monster

      October 7, 2010 at 17:18

  4. James Lee: Insurance companies make more money by accurately assessing the risk involved in a policy, and pricing it so that they collect more money from the people who buy it than they pay out to those who make claims, while also pricing it so that their customers won’t go to another insurer.

    Sorry, that’s not true. The risk for some drivers may be higher than any plausible premium. These drivers probably shouldn’t drive, and there are laws that regulate minimum standards. However, with living people, you can’t legislate minimum health.

    It’s a fact that insurance companies try to avoid insuring people liable to be sick. They sometimes even take affirmative actions to drop patients who get sick.

    James Lee: That’s because the US pharmaceutical industry uses profits earned here to subsidize operations in countries that don’t pay as much for their products.

    Saying that every other country can get a better deal than Americans is not a fair or sustainable system.

    James Lee: Your good-intentioned meddling might kill my wife.

    Your position seems to leave millions without any primary health care. That means easily treated diseases go undiagnosed until it is often too late. In any case, a workable system must include incentives for research.

    (To say that you are personally responsible for millions of deaths would be silly, of course.)

    Zachriel

    October 8, 2010 at 11:40

    • For what it’s worth, it is not ME you are quoting there. The fact of the matter is, though, that the system is OVER-regulated, and this new law simply makes it WORSE. See the point of my post, the waivers granted to 29 companies and entities (including a teachers union) to avoid the ramifications of the law in an election year where liberals are going to get figuratively slaughtered as it is.

      Opening up markets, opening up competition, and giving the choices to the person actually USING the insurance policies would do much more to level out costs than any heavy-handed government intervention.

      Again, NO regulation is NOT what I am advocating. Just reasonable ones, not intended to cut the knees out from under companies trying to do business. Which, as I and many others believe wholeheartedly, is the entire point of Obamacare Health Control.

      If total government control *is* the point, then our elected officials have lied to us and deceived us as to their intentions. If it is not, and they honestly believed they were going to “help,” then they were deceived by well-intentioned individuals citing cause and effect scenarios that are nowhere based in reality. In either case, it simply proves they are unfit for elected office.

      BTW, “incentives for research” is generally defined as “profit potential” if the research is successful.

      James Lee

      October 8, 2010 at 11:52

    • You don’t seem to comprehend the point of insurance.

      We buy insurance to protect us against things that are unlikely, but catastrophic. I am unlikely to be involved in an auto accident in any given half-year policy term, but if I am unlucky, the expense can be huge.

      I’m probably never going to have a fire burn down my house, but if I do, losing my largest asset would really suck. So I pay a premium every year to cover that. My homeowner’s insurance doesn’t cover burned out lightbulbs, weed-pruning, chipped paint, or a dead microwave oven. Those things I expect to happen every so often, so I budget for them, and pay for them directly.

      A person with a pre-existing condition is almost certain to have medical expenses to treat that condition, and is more likely to have complications, or to have that condition cause treatment of any new ailment to be more expensive. (TBoM is not allowed to have general anasthetic, as it’s quite likely to make her stop breathing. I like her to breathe.)

      For the rest of us, a high-deductible policy combined with a medical savings account works far better than the kind of all-inclusive policies that ObamaCare demands.

      The Monster

      October 8, 2010 at 12:58

  5. Sorry for the misattribution.

    Zachriel

    October 8, 2010 at 12:04

    • No problem, sometimes hard to keep names and replies straight in the blogosphere.

      James Lee

      October 8, 2010 at 12:13


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