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Political Posts

 
Emanuel: young and old “worth” less

Date: 2009-08-12T00:00:00
Author: JD Swampfox
Editor note: If this doesn't scare you ... nothing will.
Teaser:

From Newt Gingrich’s site:

Dr. Ezekial Emanuel is a key health care advisor to President Obama and the brother of White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel. Earlier this year, Dr. Emanuel wrote an article that advocated what he called “


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From Newt Gingrich’s site:

Dr. Ezekial Emanuel is a key health care advisor to President Obama and the brother of White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel. Earlier this year, Dr. Emanuel wrote an article that advocated what he called “the complete lives system” as a method for rationing health care.  You can read it here. The system advocated by Dr. Emanuel would allocate health care based on the government’s perception of the societal worth of the patients.  Accordingly, the very young and the very old would receive less care since the former have received less societal investment and the latter have less left to contribute. “The Complete Lives System” would also consider the prognosis of the individual. Quoting Dr. Emanuel:  “A young person with a poor prognosis has had few life-years but lacks the potential to live a complete life.  Considering prognosis forestalls the concern that disproportionately large amounts of resources will be directed to young people with poor prognosis.” When fully implemented, Dr. Emanuel’s system, in his words, “produces a priority curve on which individuals aged between roughly 15 and 40 years get the most substantial chance, whereas the youngest and oldest people get chances that are attenuated.” “Chances that are attenuated” is a nice way of saying the young and the old are considered less worthy of health care and, under this system, will get less.

Our unborn and newly born children and our aging parents are considered low value by the Obama Administration.  It took a few years before the British decided that if it took more than $45,000 to keep you alive for a year, the government would not pay the cost.  But that’s where they are now.  And the US will be doing the same thing with Obamacare.  We need to heavily regulate the insurance companies to stop their abuse, but we also need to stop law suit abuse – something the Obama administration cannot do since it owes so much to the American Trial Lawyers.  We need to do things that increase the supply of doctors, nurses and hospitals in the US.  Reducing the cost of practicing medicine by capping the billions ($4 B in 2003, probably up to $10B today) paid out to lawyers in malpractice awards will encourage more doctors to practice.   It’s really Econ 101: when the supply curve shifts favorably, the price goes down.  If we take ALL the profits away from the “evil” health insurance companies, it’s just a drop in the bucket- and does nothing to increase the supply of health care or of health insurance. For example, below is a list of the 2006 profits (in millions) of the top for-profit health insurers:

Industry: Health Care: Insurance & Managed Care
Company Revenues ‘06 Profits
UnitedHealth Group 71,542 4,159
Wellpoint 56,953 3,095
Aetna 25,569 1,702
Humana 21,417 487
Cigna 16,547 1,155
Health Net 12,908 329
Coventry Health Care 7,734 560
WellCare Health Plans 3,763 139
Amerigroup 2,835 107
Centene 2,279 -44
Medical Mutual of Ohio 2,039 100
Molina Healthcare 2,005 46
Sierra Health Services 1,719 140
  Total 11,975

Even if the whole industry were making 2 times this 12 billion figure, its not enough to pay the insurance bill for the presently uninsured…  Obama blames the insurance indutry, but it’s a straw man. His motivation is government control – socialism – for it’s own sake.

Obama opened his speech by saying Americans are too often “held hostage” by insurance companies that deny or drop their coverage or charge fees they cannot afford.

Who would you rather be “held hostage” by – Aetna or the US government?  The government will drop your coverage when you are too old or too young to defend yourself.  At least now, if Aetna “drops” you,  there are other insurance companies to appeal to, but once the government drives the private insurers out of business there will be no one to appeal to – no alternative – but to resign yourself to the government’s death sentence.  There is a free market, non government takeover alternative…see for example this WSJ piece.

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