We were told that the Tea Party was about fiscal responsibility and returning to the Constitution. Some of us kept mentioning the far right. We kept getting told no, its about the economy, stupid. No, not really. the culture warriors are being to creep out of the closet. We knew it all along. Their code words didn’t fool us.

Those of you who really have concerns about the fiscal end of things had better watch those who have invaded your movement with their far right social agenda. The American people will not stand for it once they realize what’s really happening. their economic fears will soon be replaced with the fear that ‘the right’ is right there in the bedroom with them. And once the camel’s nose is under the tent, pretty soon you have a real live camel taking over your tent.

The Republicans will unveil their agenda on September 23. Lord knows what will come out of that.

September 23 for Democrats will mark the date that kids can’t be dropped from your insurance for preexisting conditions. Additionally, no one can be dropped for having an illness. Children up to age 26 can stay on your policy if you chose and there are no more lifetime limits. Sounds like a good plan to me.

Is there a scheduling conflict?

69 Thoughts to “The Culture Wars are Back…and out of the closet”

  1. Elena

    You said it better than I could Pat.Herve! The idea that we are doing it the best we can is simply not based in reality. People who fight the hardest against reform are the ones that I believe have never been on the recieving end of being denied coverage. I will continue to say that I find it unfathomable that anyone would defend the current status quo if someone they loved had directly suffered due to lack of care that human beings have a right to have. Staying alive and getting health care is not a priveledge in my opinion, it is a right and a country as great as America can do better.

  2. marinm

    Elena, that’s a broad statement. I’ve been denied coverage. I’ve also met a lifetime max. Yet, I will still defend an insurance companies ability to both have a lifetime max and be able to deny coverage based on that max or on fraud. I assume you have no issue with denying based on fraud so I assume you have an issue with lifetime maxes.

    If lifetime maxes weren’t used and inforced the question I posed before still stands.. How much are we willing to spend to either save or provide a few years for 1 person instead of..say 10 or 100?

    Your arguement seems to show that you want people fully covered for whatever condition they have. That’s not an economic reality. Even in countries where healthcare is handled by the State they’ll refuse to treat certain conditions, queue others or only provide comfort care instead of treatment. It’s harsh but there is only so many resources that can be dedicated to healthcare and with respect to persons; to that one individual that is sick but all that actuary’s recommend writing off (corp or governmental death panel, as it were).

    I have a problem with any of us telling a company how to run it’s business. If I wanted to do that I could:

    1. Work for the company and try to change it from within
    2. Buy stock and leverage like-minded holders to change within
    3. Leverage my power as a consumer and not buy products/services of that company and recommend others do the same.

    Outside of that it’s none of my business how much they want to pay someone or how they want to conduct business as long as it’s legal.

    To your previous point about ‘who pays for my care’ that problem was created by Congress when they mandated that all hospitals equipped with an ER must treat and stabalize without regard to payment. Congress created the problem and Congress is now trying to ‘fix’ it.

    So, how do we fix things?

    I personally think small tweaks will accomplish much. HCR is too large and massive and doesn’t solve the financial issue it only gives more people access to care at the expense of those already insured and the providers of that service.

    Does anyone here think that a public option won’t end up being just a massive HMO run by the government?

  3. Pat.Herve

    but what small tweaks – the Federal budget is going under due to healthcare costs –

    VA – yeah, I do want them to treat the soldiers coming back with TBI (traumatic brain injury)
    MHS – Yeah, I want healthy soldiers
    Medicare, Medicaid, Schips, Tricare, FEMA, IHS, NIH, etc – the list goes on. Medicare and Medicaid are 20% of the budget (and rising), second only to defense (with 2 wars going on). Somehow, someway, we are a country need to get things under control – and we have not been doing it – I can complain about all of them (R’s and D’s) – but the R’s seem to like the status quo, whereas the D’s seem to want to do something.

    We are in a world of hurt coming, and our politicians do not want to do it, but we need to take our medicine. You can complain about Obama – but the seeds were already sown before he got into office – On January 7, 2009, the projected deficit was already 1.3 trillion – before Obama did anything.

    The R’s do not want to compromise on anything – lets keep the unfunded bush tax cuts on 98% of the population – affecting only the 2% richest – and the R’s (many in that 2%) say no. Cutting taxes and putting it on the credit card is not fiscally responsible (both sides), and we have been living off the credit card for a number of years. Just like Rush said, make Obama fail at all costs – well, we are seeing what that means.

  4. marinm

    Pat, as you mentioned in your previous post, I support your idea of allowing more elderly or terminally ill patients die. We have to know our limitations and we have to be willing to understand the limitations of our resources.

    I’d advocate for coming down harder on those on both sides (providers, insurers or insured) that conduct fraud.

    I see a difference betwen telling an insurance company your a non-smoker when you aren’t and not mentioning a tenderness in your leg that comes on occassionally and then getting dropped for a pre-existing tumor. If you’ve paid premiums for the life of that contract and had no knowledge of that pre-existing condition I don’t see how/why you should be dropped.

    Less scripts being written for antibiotics. I know parents freak out when a young baby gets a cold but sometimes a cold is just the cold. Suck it up. You are helping to create superbugs and the antibiotics ain’t gonna do nothing for that cold.

    And of course, tort reform so we don’t need $15,000 worth of tests to confirm you broke your finger.

  5. As for terminally ill patients, how about just enacting right to die legislation where the person or a designee gets to determine when they check out.

    Your culture warriors would sure put a stop to that real fast. I would support it wholeheartedly if the safeguards were in place to protect the patient from people who didn’t have their best interests in mind.

  6. Pat.Herve

    tort reform yes – lets reform it – but how much do you really think we would save with tort reform – a drop in the bucket.
    Fraud – yes, and lets prosecute the offenders – like a guy in brooklyn who billed for over 6000 procedures last year – next highest office was like 400 – how do they not catch this earlier.

    But – until now, an insurance company could (and some still can) drop you because you develop breast cancer, and failed to tell them that you had acne – http://www.newsweek.com/blogs/the-gaggle/2009/09/01/the-fight-over-rescissions.html

    if your employer lapses your insurance for a day, due to non payment, should you now have your coverage denied?

    Less scripts has nothing to do with insurance or healthcare – that is a society problem – are you now going to tell the Dr how to practice – the parents can ask all they want, it is the Dr’s decision to dispense the antibiotic (and I agree, we dispense too much antibiotics – it is healthy to be sick).

    The reason to require (mandate) coverage, is so that the pool is larger, and the costs spread out over more people, and as life is a box of chocolates, you can never know what you might get as far as health is concerned.

    Back to tort reform – a common sound bite from the R’s – why didn’t the reform tort when they were in control? The sound bite mentality really needs to go – Tax cuts, less spending, tort reform, pay as you go – Yes, I agree – but how, and that is where the rubber hits the road, and the R’s have no plan, and did not have a plan, even when they were in control – Status Quo is not an option. Bush came into office in a Recession (Clinton recession) and left office in a Recession (Obama recession), the lost decade in the stock market, 2 wars, increased deficits, increased bloated government payroll, and many say that is what we should go back to.

  7. marinm

    Right to die legislation only helps when they want to die… What about when they don’t but the costs to maintain life exceed a certain number or value? Do we tell people that we can’t provide flu shots because we’re keeping this one person alive who without medical attention would expire in a day or so?

    Pat, insurance companies already tell doctors how to practice to an extent. How many times have you heard a person say my insurance won’t cover this medication but they’ll cover this one.

    To your example about the antibiotics being less about insurance/healthcare and more about society. I disagree. If you allow the insurance company to reject the charge and allow the person to be accountable for the cost on their own they may just be better stewards of those financial decisions. Wait, I have to pay $50 out of pocket for this antibiotic because the doctor told me it was useless but I still wanted it and the insurance company agreed with the doctor? Well, maybe I really don’t need it…….

    Additionally, you ignored the superbug issue. That you could claim is squarely a healthcare issue as someone overusing medication could have a direct impact on my healthcare (assuming I contract a strain of MRSA that is immune to most antibiotics as an example).

    To your question about employers lapsing coverage…yes the coverage should be denied. Contracts are contracts and all sides should be legally accountable for the actions they take. If the contract says payment should be made by 12:01 pm and it arrives at 12:02 pm then the insurance company now has cause to terminate. Will they? Probably not assuming they make some profit out of it but that’s their decision. And, if that happened to you, I’d encourage you to find a new employer.

    Mandating coverage impacts my civil rights. I have the right to say NO to healthcare insurance if I want. I have the right to say NO to a healthcare provider wanting to provide me aide. I have the right to say NO to life saving treatment. It’s my body and I want the government out of it.

    The soundbites don’t really bother me. It’s just a way of communicating information (and idea) quickly. It’s not really any different from text mesasging or twitter. The idea behind the soundbite may be something you agree with or not but that can always be debated.

    For example; you said “many say that is what we should go back to”. That’s a sound bite. Pretty common one. I of course disagree because I don’t see things returning to how they were but more about correcting where we currently are and where we are headed before we hit the iceberg. That course may take us close to where we were in the Bush years or it may take us into a whole new direction.

    Pat, do you think the current version of HCR will decrease costs? How/where do you see the cost savings being made?

  8. Elena

    That must have been difficult once you were denied coverage and met a lifetime max. How did you survive financially? I am sorry to hear you had such serious medical issues that caused you to meet a maximum limit of coverage.

  9. marinm

    Elena, thanks but it’s not life threatening. Right now it’s making my work life interesting as I need to change employers in order to pick up coverage or take out a 401K loan. What’s interesting (and maddening from my wife’s perspective) is that HCR does not address it or cover it at all.

    I will email MH the details and she can share them with you.

  10. Pat, I find the fact that the Republicans refuse to compromise very annoying. As an independent, I would have a hard time voting for any Republican now. I guess that helps the Democrats. The country was founded on the idea of compromise. Holding out for one’s own way is just a sign of stubborness and immaturity.

  11. marin, I was having apoplexy over your ‘change employers’ remark in the long paragraph. I answered it…scathingly…then I saw your shorter answers. I erased what I had said.

    Advice, don’t take money out of your 401k. Its bad intregal calculus.

    ARe you going uninsured right now?

  12. marinm

    MH, emailed you the long story but yes I’m paying out of pocket and having researched things back and forth the 401K check on my dinner table is the best of the worst decisions.

    To #10 above. I actually like divided government. More often than not the fewer things accomplished in DC the better off the citizenry is. I have no objection to a House controlled by the -Ds and a Senate controlled by the -Rs or vice versa. I like it when govt’s a check on itself rather than a rubber stamp.

    Appreciate the eraser being used but it would’ve been fun to see those flames!! 🙂

  13. Oh I would have left it if I had not read your additions. But I discovered what I was saying wasn’t accurate.

  14. Wolverine

    Moon, there are plenty of people out there “diluting” the cause on the other side. I just have to check out the “progressive” blogs or the commentary on certain MSM websites and I find multitudes of people to whom I would not give the time of day because they are, well, just, disrespectful, crude and frequently full-blown obscene in their commentary and advocacy. To be adamant, dedicated, and voiciferous is one thing in my book; but when I encouter so much of the crap I see on those sites, I say that we should collect and publish under the slogan: “My fellow Americans, do you really want to have people like this with a major effect on your lives?” True that you will find some of these on my side as well, but the ratio in my experience is heavy in the direction of the other side. Which is precisely why I am here on this particular site with its stated policy of keeping debate civil. Most of those other sites do not merit a second of my time.

  15. I don’t read much of that Wolverine. I can’t say yea or nay. I am just familiar with local blogs and the local papers. We aren’t always civil but we are most of the time. I guess that beats the alternative.

    Of the worst we get is ‘moron’ and ‘squirrel’ then even the outrage is held in check.

    I know the model I don’t want to become. (and so does everyone else.)

    And I am glad you are here, Wolverine. We do find common ground. Some things we will never agree on but others we do. And I think that is what guides this blog…the common ground. Hell, I even defend Slow…and he knows it. He self-deports when he gets too much of a head of steam and then he comes back. Works for me. He usually doesn’t even need to be told.

    You and Cargo have been held up as models to those people who don’t seem to grasp how to behave when they disagree with people. I have told more than one person to observe you or Cargo and then compare how you disagree with the person’s own style of discussion.

  16. Pat.Herve

    marin – yes, HCR, as it is now, can have an effect on the costs of healthcare – while the total cost of healthcare will not go down, having more people in the insurance pool *should* reduce the rates for individuals (although at an increased cost to those ‘risking’ it). The Healthcare reform will need to address reimbursements – it is an area that needs reform, but was not addressed.

    It may be hard for you to find another plan with another employer – as you are the cases they are looking for – with you and your family history, you may actually increase the policy rates. This is unfortunate, and I have heard of individuals not getting job offers based on someone knowing of the health issue. And it goes straight to my point, you are now in the position of stealing from your own retirement to pay for some healthcare – and you have been contributing to your plan (and may have had better plans in the past with no/higher caps). With my employer, I cannot cover a dependent, unless I am also covered, which in your case would be a waste of money (for your own coverage).

    Yes, you have to right to decline care – but the issue is that there are many who take the risk (or the need $$) to have no insurance. When they come into the hospital, they are treated with or without insurance, and we, the tax paying, insured – are paying for that. What HCR reform offers is actually very pro business – coverage for all, private insurance for all, and we all pay for it. I am done on this thread.

  17. Thank you, Moon.

    I have had a lot of experience in the AOL political chat rooms and commenting on other blogs. I’ve found that I can aggravate certain liberals beyond all measure of control when I DO NOT flame, but calmly contradict them. Over, and over, and over…..

    MMMmmm, fun times….

  18. Of course, I haven’t found those liberals to frequent this blog. Well, not very much.

  19. We really don’t have a huge number of true liberals here on this blog. Most of our people who aren’t conservatives are moderates/centrists/hybrids.

    Remember that the matriarch of the original blog. She never had voted anything but Republican. She just didn’t agree with the county’s stance and tone on the immigration issue.

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