AMERICAN RATIONALE

(cato-at-liberty.org)
(cato-at-liberty.org)

By: Wayne Brown


This past week I read an article posted here on the Hub that was expose’ on the flawed thinking of Congressman Paul Ryan and his “Path to Prosperity” proposals. Now, let’s get something straight here from the start. I am here not to either defend or ridicule Mr. Ryan’s proposal. The last time I checked, this was a free country and our elected representatives could put forth any program they felt was representative of their constituency.


Given that premise, let me say that I found the article straight-forward and to the point that the writer believed that Mr. Ryan fully expected to have all senior citizens weaned onto a diet of pet food by the time his program was implemented. The fact that he proposed reforms in Medicare and put forth some structure to have it to continue to exist within the framework of a market based medical industry was lost. Ryan was labeled as a cruel, conservative, tax-cutting while continuing to spend Republican bent on starving the old people out of America. Never mind that Ryan has not passed any legislation, he is already a bad guy for even thinking of anything that suggests a reduction in spending.


The comments accompanying the article followed the same line of thinking. The writer and the readers seem to be literally picking apart Ryan’s proposal to expose it for all that was bad for the citizens of America. I found myself wondering where these people were when Obama-Care was passed into law. Of course, I did not have to think along those lines long to realize these were the very same people who would go to their death defending Obama-Care. I guess you could say that I was now really confused.


How can you shrug your shoulders and allow something like the Obama-Care legislation to become law? In the first place, I defy you to find someone who can explain it in reasonable terms to the American people. It was written by someone. How can you write a bill that is nearly 2,000 pages in length yet no one really understands it well enough to explain it and contrast it to Medicare? But forget that, we passed into law so that we could find out what was in it, to quote the all-intelligent former Speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi.


Those who would decry Ryan’s proposal point out that he would have seniors paying premiums for reduced price insurance coverage from the marketplace, coverage they likely could not afford. Never mind that Obama-Care appears to be riff with taxes of every describable nature at every transaction level. Now who do you think is going to pay those “taxes” folded into the plan? Taxes are never designed to be paid by the government collecting them, thus it will fall on the backs of those using the program.


Some point out that Ryan’s proposal would lower the quality of care for our elderly and put their health in jeopardy. That may be true but at the same time let’s not forget the medical review panels designed into Obama-Care which is essentially there to determine the cost-benefit of a particular procedure. Proponents of Obama-Care snarl at the use of the term “death panels” but in truth what else can they be? Oh sure, they will rule on the coverage for benefits of a less-than-death nature and they will likely withhold payment since Aunt Sally is just too old to really be a productive member of society even if she gets that expensive hip replacement. The same rule will apply when it comes time to decide whether Aunt Sally receives the level of care necessary to keep her alive…after all she is old and can never really be a truly productive member of society anymore.


Do you really think the appointment of “Doctor Death” by Obama to head up the Medicare System and transition it to Obama-Care was a coincidence. That singular move signaled where the entire system was headed regardless of what we call it. Oh, you can bet the names and labels used will be up to the politically correct savvy necessary to avoid suggesting that the government, in the interest of reducing costs, is now taking a more aggressive role in making medical decisions with regard to the elderly in this country. For all the criticism that Medicare may have received in years past for inadequate care, it will not hold a candle to what we will see in the future.


The bottom-line here folks is that your government has taken your money for decades upon decades in terms of both Social Security and Medicare. That money has been rolled into the discretionary spending process ever since Lyndon Johnson proposed the legislation to place it into the general funds. The coffers of Social Security and Medicare are filled with more or less worthless IOU’s from your government because they squandered the money on other things they deemed more necessary than your future welfare or healthcare. Now, they are in a pickle because they cannot kick the can down the road much further and it is time to pony up with the money. It’s time for new ideas, political ideas designed to distract and mislead.


Any politician will tell you that it would be very difficult to do away with Social Security or Medicare if you call them by their present names while doing it. Americans have a monetarily vested interest in those programs and they have expectations from them. There is no way they are just going away unless you have some beads to trade with the Indians for our wampum. Politicians understand that angle; they learned it while stealing land from the Native Americans.


Our government talks of how flawed Medicare is and how it cannot be fixed. It would never work to attempt to fix it, never! At the same time, look in my left hand at these pretty beads called Obama-Care. With this program, Medicare and all the money invested into it by the citizens of America can just disappear along with any money that is left in it…like maybe the $500, 000 million dollars Obama directed taken out of the funds for the start up of Obama-Care. Now you have the promise of something better and we can take Medicare outback and blow its brains out. By the time you figure out that you have been had, it will be far too late to be complaining. The question will be asked, “Where were you when we announced this change?” America is going to be standing there with pie on its face.


Once that process and slight of hand is accomplished with Medicare, it will be relatively easy to come right behind that with some flim-flam program that replaces Social Security and our problems as a nation will be solved. Never mind the fact that a lot of Americans who paid hard-earned money into both programs will be standing there asking, “What happened?” It does not matter what happened. What matters is that the politicians will come through to the other side not owing the American public a dime or an explanation for squandering their money. That’s what really matters here.


Of course on the way to getting there, we will lose a few things, mostly just freedoms of choice and selection. The medical industry will never be the same and will slowly slip into mediocrity as more and more of the talented young people choose other professions rather than work in an industry controlled wholly by the federal government. Our attitudes will change. Oh, we will still want the best for Aunt Sally and Uncle Tom but the degradation of services, the long waits, the medical review panels, the multi-level taxation, all will eventually overwhelm our urgency and we will watch Aunt Sally and Uncle Tom pass on lacking the care that they might have received under the old flawed Medicare Program that has long since been forgotten.


So how did we get here? What a hell of place to end up. How did we get here? Actually the answer is quite simple. As a public, we believed what politicians told us all these years and we sat back while they spent us into oblivion leaving no rock unturned as to finding more and more of our money to spend. We now have come to the absolute brink of financial ruin in this country and what we have to show for it is our inability to take care of those who our government took money from for years and years with just that promise in mind. Unfortunately, they forgot the promise and spent the money. Now, forgiveness is in order.


As I stated earlier, I am not here to defend the proposals of Paul Ryan. I do defend his right to make them and to suggest to the American public that we have an extremely serious situation at hand and the best thing we can do to amend that situation is to attempt ways to reduce our spending habits as a nation. At the very least, Paul Ryan deserves some level of respect for having the guts to at least stand up and point that out. His proposals may be a bit too harsh but what they point out is the depth that our efforts will have to reach in order to have an impact in turning around this situation that we find ourselves in thanks to our dearly elected leaders over the past decades. At least he has the guts to raise the question.


There appears to be a sector of our nation that believes that America can do anything that it wants without compromise, payback, or reason. They actually believe that we are such a truly blessed people that in the end we can make no mistakes. No matter what we do the outcome will be fine because it always seemed that way as they were growing up. Perhaps they never really noticed the rattling sound of that can being kicked down the road.


Those who run our government have created expectations on the part of the American public. They have done so since the beginning of time in this country. Votes have been bought in one way or another with the taxpayer’s own dollars. Promises have been made and lies have been told. WashingtonDC and those who populate it in elected office fail to understand the word “accountability”. They don’t want to understand it for if they did, they would have to conform to the definition. They would rather subscribe to the premise, “forgive and forget”.


Paul Ryan will no doubt be demonized in the political realm, especially on the liberal side of the aisle. Liberals make points with the voter in this manner by simply pointing to Ryan and those like him and saying, “This is one of the people who want to take your rights away.” For as long as the attention stays on the evils of the Paul Ryans of America, the tax and spend liberals can continue their efforts to dismantle America unabated by public opinion.


Bernie Madoff is in jail right now as he rightly should be. Madoff took money from little old ladies and gray-haired gentlemen who had worked all their lives. They invested resources with Madoff because he promised a return on their investment and security for their future. When the veil was lifted, Madoff had stolen their money and fooled everyone with his Ponzi scheme. Social Security and Medicare may not be much different with the exception that no one is in jail or going to jail with regard to how the money was managed. The exception is we now have politicians who want to rename the process and start all over forgetting the fact that they took the people’s money. Madoff would have loved such an opportunity to rename his company and continue on his way. We hold the Madoffs of this world accountable but not the elected officials.


Once we conquer the evil rich people and take all their assets, we can divide the wealth around our nightly camp fires and sing Kumbaya for all will be well in America. We will be bankrupt as a society, the wealthier sect that once made investments and sustained job growth will be gone, and we will all truly be equal…poor, but equal. Then and only then can the government become the one and only true savior and provider of all our needs as it so wants to be. God Bless America.



© Copyright WBrown2011. All Rights Reserved.

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Comments 39 comments

Old Poolman profile image

Old Poolman 5 years ago from Rural Arizona

Wayne - this was absolutely amazing. You covered a lot of material in a manner most will be able to understand. For the first time in my life, I am glad I am old enough I will not be here to sit around the fire with all the broke and beaten people who will populate this country. I wonder if Obama will be a subject of discussion around these fireside chats?


Wayne Brown profile image

Wayne Brown 5 years ago from Texas Author

@Old Poolman...Oh you can bet there will be a lot of them around the fire citing how Bush caused it all. By then people will assigned places to live and assigned jobs. Only the most productive will receive the best care and the best food. Class envy will still be the order of the day. The rich will be those still stupid enough to work hard and get whatever benefits they can. The others will still hate them for it and demand that they share in the prize. Leaders will turn a blind eye for they know that in that envy lies the control of the masses...divide and conquer. Some will be very happy for the world will truly be one...one large socialistic dictatorship with far more problems than even the Chinese have at the present in terms of energy, food, clean air and water. It will truly be a Utopian society which everyone gets their fair share of nothing. Sorry I won't be around for the fun either! Thanks Mike. WB


Partisan Patriot 5 years ago

Wayne

We’ve got one chance to frame the debate in terms even the dumbest amongst us can understand despite the spin applied by the Willing Accomplices of the Democrats; if we fail to win this upcoming debate the war; not the battle is lost.

Whoever wins this upcoming debate will most assuredly win the White House in 2012; this country cannot stand 4 more years of the Obama Regime.

I would say pray for an epiphany for the Main Stream Media but they are beyond that; these are truly insidious people who want nothing more than the destruction of the United States of America!


dahoglund profile image

dahoglund 5 years ago from Wisconsin Rapids

It seems that money is no object if it is for a liberal cause. If so, how come we still have problems?


breakfastpop profile image

breakfastpop 5 years ago

Wayne,

Four more years of Obama and that's it. The worm will have turned and the nation we once knew will be a shadow of its former self and a replica of Europe or the Middle East. The Republicans had better pull themselves together and present a viable candidate capable of sending Obama back to Chicago or Kenya for that matter. Voted up useful and absolutely awesome.


Wayne Brown profile image

Wayne Brown 5 years ago from Texas Author

@Partisan Patriot...You are correct and the time to establish the basis for the argument is now. We don't need to wait until Obama has "saved the day" with his fantasy plan and then have to climb that hill. The Republicans need to get on the stick! WB

@dahoglund...The liberals think we just need to pull out another credit card and give everybody another free block of cheese, DA...then, we'll all go for a ride in the Welfare Cadillac. Thanks much! WB

@breakfastpop...Four more years of Obama would finish off any country Poppy. This guy is pure poison and his ilk in the Congress in the likes of Reid and Pelosi are just scum. Pelosi is already on the street doing her dirty work. How dare her yell to keep your hands off Medi-Care when she was the primary push behind Obama-Care...what a hypocritical facelift! WB


mckbirdbks profile image

mckbirdbks 5 years ago from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas

Aetna Health Insurance Corp posted a 491 million dollar profit in 2010. There are 307 million Americans. The PROFIT PAID just by the Aetna customers in one year could FUND a MILLION dollars worth of HEALTHCARE for EVERY American. And we could all take a cruise with the change.


Old Poolman profile image

Old Poolman 5 years ago from Rural Arizona

@mckbirdbks - I'm sorry, but I am missing the point of your comment. Aetna is only one of many Health Insurance companies. If Aetna and none of the others could pay all of their expenses including a huge payroll, and still make some profit, they would not stay in business. Are you saying they should not make any profit at all? I'm not arguing with you, just don't understand where you are going with this one.


mckbirdbks profile image

mckbirdbks 5 years ago from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas

Hello Old Pool Man: It is even worse than that. I am saying we don't need them (the insurance companies) at all. If the profits from ONE insurance company for ONE year of business would provide one million dollars worth of HEALTHCARE . Then why would Consumers (us)not instead just Fund healthcare.

It is a gross misallocation of funds. Both private funds and public funds seem to come directly out of our pockets.


Old Poolman profile image

Old Poolman 5 years ago from Rural Arizona

Hmmm, put that way, this comment makes a great deal of sense. It would be fun to put some numbers to this and get some totals on what we currently pay every year.

Thanks for clearing this up.


Truckstop Sally profile image

Truckstop Sally 5 years ago

Interesting hub! Hope you didn't mean anything personal by your Aunt Sally references. Ha! Your Reagan video is very good. Lots to think about here! Not always easy . . . but always important.


Wayne Brown profile image

Wayne Brown 5 years ago from Texas Author

@mckbirdbks...As good as that theory might sound, it just doesn’t work that way. Use the reverse logic. If we assume that Aetna made $471 million dollars in profits in 2010, it was not because 307 million Americans paid them $1.5 million dollars in premiums each. Individuals cannot afford those premiums. Healthcare companies don’t make their profits off of healthcare premiums to individuals. They make them charging fees to large corporations to “manage and administrate” their healthcare benefits. They also provide the corporation with advice on what items should be covered and to what degree based on standard practices in the industry. Most of these corporations of size are “self-insured” up to the point of catastrophic events. On that basis, the corporation is picking up about 75% of the cost of the healthcare coverage for the employee. Typically, the employee will be paying the other 25%. Aetna is using the corporation’s funds to pay the claims, etc. and simply administering the accounting between the medical industry and the corporation. For those services, they charge a fee. There is stiff competition in the industry to gain that business thus companies like Aetna have to continually work on their physician networks and customer service systems to provide the types of service the corporations demand for their employees while keeping costs as low as possible. The corporation also depends on the healthcare provider to contract reduced service rates with their providers in order to reduce the overall costs of the benefit. So, by wiping out the insurance healthcare companies, you will not solve the medical insurance coverage issue, you will only create a situation in which corporation have to manage their own benefits…which is not efficient or effective for them to do. In fact, once Obama-Care becomes a reality and the federal government is basically running healthcare in this country, these corporations will need the assistance of the healthcare companies like Aetna even more so to help the navigate the red tape of government healthcare. Costs will escalate on all fronts, service quality and choice will go down, and in the end the Aetna’s of the world will continue to make their profits and the price to the consumer or employee will go up significantly…there is nothing to be improved here except the spread of socialism. WB


Wayne Brown profile image

Wayne Brown 5 years ago from Texas Author

@Truckstop Sally...Ha! Had not thought of that...be well, Sally, be well! WB


TimBryce 5 years ago

Wayne -

The left does not know how to argue, but they sure do a hell of a job with spin (and spin does not require the truth). Good piece.

All the Best,

Tim


RealHousewife profile image

RealHousewife 5 years ago from St. Louis, MO

WB - I like how you wrote this hub very straight forward. I wish that I could just keep the money I pay into SS and Medicare taxes and invest it myself. I read the comments too and it made my stomach hurt. I have Aetna (private policy for SBO's) it is very expensive - yes! For a family of 5 and it doesn't cover much. My youngest had to have some complicated tests done last year. I found out that an MRI is $2,500! I had to pay for it. Also a ton of hearing and neurological tests! Thousands of dollars! Although, everything was completely normal, I was grateful to find out. She just passes out for no apparent reason some times. Lazy girl:)!

My nephew who is 13 told me a great one the other day. (he is in gifted programs and very smart) he said, hey Aunt Kel - you wanna hear a joke?

I said Yes!

He said simply, "Obama - Care"

Lol!


mckbirdbks profile image

mckbirdbks 5 years ago from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas

Good morning Wayne,

You have put a nice spin on the information I offered. I was just pointing out that the waste in the health insurance system would go along way if put to better use in the health care system. Solutions are available if we search for them. The math holds up, the 400 plus million dollar profit could have been used to supply one million worth of health care to EVERY American. I’ll leave the details to you.


Wayne Brown profile image

Wayne Brown 5 years ago from Texas Author

@mckbirdbks...As soon as you can find a way to put your hands on that 471 million dollars and leave Aetna out of the picture...let me know. Then, I buy the math. Thanks. WB


Wayne Brown profile image

Wayne Brown 5 years ago from Texas Author

@TimBryce...Given the positions the left takes, I would not know how to argue either. They defy common sense. That's the reason they have to dress a jackass up to look like a horse so they can sell him to the unsuspecting. Thanks Tim. WB

@RealHousewife...You know that was one thing George Bush attempted to do a few years back and the left painted him as some kind of evil monster who was bound on giving the elderly's hard earned money to Wall Street to lose. What a sham. Now we have Obama arguing to save Medicare when Obamacare is set to destroy it over time. It just goes to shop that these guys have no shame when it comes to trying to gain votes...they are total whores! Love the joke by the way! Gonna use it. Remembers me of the joke...."name a dog with wings".....Lynda McCartney! Ha! WB


drbj profile image

drbj 5 years ago from south Florida

How could we expect our gifted (?) members of Congress to understand ObamaCare when they passed it when most of them are like Pelosi who was quoted the other day as saying, "elections are not very important..."

The same brilliant minds are now toying with Medicare. God help us.


Old Poolman profile image

Old Poolman 5 years ago from Rural Arizona

Another issue to look at is the horrible corruption involved with Medicare. We all know about it, we have tools that could find it and fix it, but we choose to ignore it and make many crooks very wealthy in the process. These fraudulent billing artists should be tried in court and sentenced like any other criminal would be.

If I were in power, why would I choose to ignore this billion dollar a year fraud on our government? Gosh, could it be that I somehow benefit from this theft of taxpayer funds?


Wayne Brown profile image

Wayne Brown 5 years ago from Texas Author

@drbj...Was it not Obama, Reid, and Pelois who so claimed that Medicare was beyond fixing? Now they are defending it? Sure, they are...it gets the votes of the old people. Wait until the old people get a taste of Obamacare and start screaming to have their Medicare back...let's see who is there defending Medicare then. WB

@Old Poolman...Oh, but you know Mr. Obama and Ms. Pelosi done decided that Medicare is too broken to fix. What makes them think that if they cannot catch those pilfering a billion dollars a year out of Medicare that they can stop it on Obamacare. (Easy answer...all the doctors will be broke by then and the crooks will be the only ones left!). WB


Stu From VT 5 years ago

Up, Useful, Awesome, Beautiful! I've heard the Gipper clip many times, and I know it's one of his finest speeches.

I'll just never understand liberals. They wave and cheer about ObieCare, which actually restricts choice and raises cost. But they denigrate Ryan, whose proposals are only a PARTIAL solution to our debt crisis.

Ryan's proposals on entitlements are tough, but unavoidable, because we can't pay off the so-called "unfunded liabilities" without mass monetization (hyperinflation that would lead to an eventual depression).

But note that Ryan's budget cuts only eliminate 40% of the current account deficit. And they don't even begin to address how we are going to pay off the official investor owned federal debt.

Essentially, all Ryan did was propose a serious STARTING POINT for follow up legislation that will have to generate about $2 trillion per year of ADDITIONAL positive current account swing (to fully close the deficit, and pay down the official debt over many decades). And the libbies can't even handle the starting point.

If we can't implement the starting point, how will we ever get to the full solution?


Wayne Brown profile image

Wayne Brown 5 years ago from Texas Author

@Stu From VT: You have to understand, Stu...these are people who want everything to be "all right" with the world. They seek utopia and tranquility and dare not worry of their ownselves and the productive lot of society. After all, there are far too many homeless and without healthcare insurance who require their attention. America is nothing in their eyes than one big bucket of money which can be used for every social concern that someone can dream up. They cannot fathom that there are people in our society who would cook the books on environmental science just to create the concern they need to raise money from the population or receive government grants for the rest of their life. These are people who are incapable of thinking for themselves because they don't want to have any bad thoughts. Bad thoughts must be blocked and only tranquil and loving things must be embraced. Obie is their savior, the man who came to raise up the little man from that society has dealt him over the decades. Truth be known, Obie wouldn't stop to speak to the little man if he met him in the road. And unfortunately, Obie is such a lousy actor he cannot mask his leanings toward socialism or the Muslim religion. It is the only place within his administration that transparency plays its exacting role. I am hoping that once Obama is out of office that Jimmy Carter will offer to build him one of those habitat for humanity homes on his Georgia peanut farm and we can then sit back and pay for the rest of our lives for Obama to live off the public dole. What a pleasure that will be. Thanks, Stu. WB


Stu From VT 5 years ago

Hi Wayne,

Your analysis is correct. There is no utopia. The best we can hope for is freedom and order. And the DOI and Constitution provides that, but we can't get our elected officials to obey them. They simply "reinterpret them" to fit into their own policy wishes, and those of their constituents. Until we get back to strict legal constructionism, in all three branches of federal government, the harrowing problems we face will remain.

Stu


Wayne Brown profile image

Wayne Brown 5 years ago from Texas Author

@Stu From VT...I agree, we have to get back to our core in order to regain our centerline. The Constitution has been tossed into the dirt by Obama and Holder. This all plays well with the socialist agenda. Thanks Stu. WB


mckbirdbks profile image

mckbirdbks 5 years ago from Emerald Wells, Just off the crossroads,Texas

Cost of Iraq war $786,183,202,000 billions

Cost of Afghanistan War $397,603,268,000 billions

307,000,000 million Americans

Irag war or $2.5 billion each of healthcare

Afghanistan war or $1.295 billion each in healthcare

So what did we get? Dead neighbors. Gluttonous politicians.

Superrich industrialist. Socialized WAR.


Mimi721wis profile image

Mimi721wis 5 years ago

Informative article Wayne. There has been so many negative things said about Paul Ryan's plan it doesn't stand a chance. It isn't just the hubs, look at what general public thinks. I haven't had any positive feelings about Ryan's plan. That could be because I lean liberal. I still believe in hearing the opinions of others and learn when I can. None of us know it all. Both sides of the isle will have to give some. The polls will play a major role with decision making about our debt ceiling. When we get out of this mess, no program of any kind should go forward unless it's paid for. God help us all.


Wayne Brown profile image

Wayne Brown 5 years ago from Texas Author

@mckbirdbks...Thanks for the numbers and comments. WB

@Mimi7212wis...Thanks. A lot of motivation in writing these is just to stimulate some thought and discussion. I think it is time for the media to ask the left some tough questions rather than giving them mike time. You are correct on Ryan's plan. I too am not that excited by it but I do give him the point to say that he recognizes that we have to fix the revenue situation regarding SS and Medicare if we are to dodge the big bullets downstream. These issue need some reasonable resolution or America will also find itself divided between young and old as well. I think it totally unfair to the older population of this country to pull the rug out from under them now on SS and Medicare when they have already worked hard to pay money into those programs...they deserve better. I can appreciate the fact that the money is not there but I don't appreciate how it was mismanaged politically without accountabiility. We have to start thinkiing for ourselves first and foremost before we listen to any elected official. If 2 and 2 don't equal 4 then we need to know why before we proceed It is the only way the American people are going to regain control of the decision process in this country. God Bless Us All. Thanks again! WB


Mimi721wis profile image

Mimi721wis 5 years ago

Thank you Wayne for this open and honest discussion.


Stu From VT 5 years ago

Mimi,

I don't blame you for not "liking" the Ryan plan, as it is tough medicine. But as I think I've mentioned before, it's only a start. The Ryan plan alone is not enough to generate sufficient surpluses to pay off the official debt. A real solution will require passing Ryan's plan, and then quickly enacting additional austerity.

Stu


The Frog Prince profile image

The Frog Prince 5 years ago from Arlington, TX

The Democratic party raped the Treasury thoroughly in just two short years. And now they want to demonize people. Right. One must have their head straight up there third point of contact to accept the crap we are witnessing about spending cuts. They have to be done and more deeply than Ryan proposed. His was just the starting point.


Mimi721wis profile image

Mimi721wis 5 years ago

Stu, there has been an negative view planted in the public's mind about the Ryan Plan. It's very unpopular with the voters. I believe some of the GOP politicians are now shying away from this plan. Nice talking with you again. I'm gonna have to hop over to your hubs one day.

Mimi


Stu From VT 5 years ago

Frog, exactly. I see now some of the high profile pundits in the MSM are attacking the Ryan plan. "It's too extreme." "It's unfair." "Too many people would get hurt." What these moonbats don't realize is that there is no such thing as "painless austerity." It's either pain now, or nonexistence later. I, for one, don't want to flip a coin or throw a dart. I want a PLAN.

And you are right that the Ryan budget is just a starting point. He makes excellent recommendations on Medicare and Medicaid, and closes a portion of the operating deficit. But enhancements are needed down the line to address the financing crisis in SS, as well as generating surpluses to pay off the official debt. Nevertheless, the Ryan plan at least gets us moving in the right direction with major action. The day of reckoning HAS to come. Let it be now, lest we wait so long the problem has no solution.

Stu


Stu From VT 5 years ago

Hi Mimi,

The Ryan plan is very unpopular with voters, and many in Congress, because it cuts public benefits. The administration hates it because it cuts federal operating expenses too. The Ryan plan doesn't even address taxes in a meaningful way; this is an area that will have to be addressed through additional legislation (i.e., the government needs more revenue, even if all the necessary spending cuts are ultimately made). While the Ryan plan addresses the funding crisis in Medicare and Medicaid, we also need drastic reform to Social Security; this would also have to be addressed through other legislation. The Ryan plan is just a starting point. Closing the federal deficits and eliminating the federal debt will require decades of severe austerity.

I only have one hub up so far, and it is on the same general topic. It is at http://hubpages.com/hub/Lets-Regress .

Stu


H P Roychoudhury profile image

H P Roychoudhury 5 years ago from Guwahati, India

I enjoyed the videos of Ragan’s views to the medical service to the American society. It is really a pity for a great country like America that the medical care is not up to the Satisfaction of the common citizens of America.


Wayne Brown profile image

Wayne Brown 5 years ago from Texas Author

@H P Roychoudhury...I think the medical care most Americans receive is up to the par they expect other than it is expensive. Some of that expense is driven in part by the necessary research and development required to keep medicine in the forefront. Other factors are the huge debts incurred by those entering practice in their college years...many have loans which must be repaid. The lack of Tort Reform within the US legal system plays a significant factor and it is a factor which the US Congress has not been willing to address...too many of them are lawyers and the American Bar Association lobby is a big one. Thus, the medical profession has a very high liability risk which the insurance coverage for such has to be blended into the costs for the patient. This increases all the more if the doctor is a specialist or a surgeon. More tests are required of them not so much for diagnosis purposes but to cover all the bases of their legal liability to the patient. The patient on the one hand does not want or necessarily need to the test but will sue the doctor for not running it if it should be determine that his illness is actually related to the test in some way. Ultimately, in America, few can afford either extensive medical care or long term care in their old age years. Medicare becomes the primary provider in this instance which is basically the people picking up the tab. All along many of these people have paid into Medicare as they have Social Security so it is by no means a "give away". As the baby boomers retire, the burden increases greatly on both Social Security payout and Medicare payout with a shrink workforce paying into it on the front side. The result is deficit red ink. Obama-Care goes out to attempt to provide affordable medical care for all by enforcing government regulation of insurance carriers in terms of their coverage and exceptions. Ultimately, Obamacare does little to reduce the cost of health insurance coverage but does more in terms of forcing the insurance companies to cover exceptional cases. In the cases where people cannot afford the healthcare...it provides free coverage to those individuals. It does nothing in terms of Tort Reform and it does nothing to motivate the medical industry in terms of R&D or in putting the most talented people into the profession. To the contrary...it will likely drive them away. In the end the government becomes the director/coordinator as opposed to simply a regulator in a market based business. In the end, the industry is stifled to mediocrity so in all liklihood future Americans will recieve worse medical care than they currently see under Medicare in a market-based industry. In the end, ObamaCare simply buys more votes in the poorer ranks of the American society. WB


Stu From VT 5 years ago

Wayne,

Exactly right. ObamaCare does nothing to reduce provider cost, the real source of the problem. Essentially, it just causes more people to be insured, subsidized by those who can pay. It doesn't solve the cost problem, it just gets Obama more votes from those newly insured.

Stu


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Wayne Brown 5 years ago from Texas Author

Stu From VT...Right on! Thanks for the good comments! WB


Stu From VT 5 years ago

Hi Wayne, Thanks, and YW, Stu

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