Sunday, November 8, 2009

Last Night, the House Passed the Health Care Reform Bill. Here is the Summary.

The House passed H.R. 3962, called the "Affordable Health Care for America Act," in a 220 to 215 vote on Saturday night. has provided these Key Provisions of the Healthcare Bill. They are an unbiased, neutral source - moreso than any other we've seen so far:
  • Creates a public health insurance option and a national exchange for the uninsured and small businesses to purchase health insurance. The Secretary of Health and Human Services would negotiate rates with doctors and hospitals on reimbursement rates.
  • The bill includes mandates for individuals to purchase and businesses to provide health insurance or pay a fine. Individual penalty is 2.5 percent of gross income unless they get a waiver. Businesses that don't offer insurance pay a fine equal to 8 percent of their payroll. Businesses with a payroll of less than $500,000 are exempt from the mandate.
  • Insurance companies are prohibited from denying coverage based on a pre-existing condition. There are caps on deductibles and annual out of pocket spending is capped at $5000.
  • Eliminates the Medicare doughnut hole over ten years. (Note: The Medicare Part D coverage gap (also known as the Medicare doughnut hole) is the difference of the initial coverage limit and the catastrophic coverage threshold, as described in the Medicare Part D prescription drug program of the United States.)
  • Allows individuals up to 27-years-old to stay on their parent’s health insurance
  • Expands Medicaid from 100 percent to 150 percent of the Federal Poverty Level.
  • Provides tax subsidies for individuals between 150 and 400 percent (sliding scale) of the Federal Poverty Level. There are also tax subsidies for small businesses.
  • As amended, it prohibits federal funds from covering abortions. Women would need to purchase riders to insurance purchased on the exchange if they wanted that coverage.
  • The bill taxes individuals making more than $500,000 and $1 million for couples. It is a 5.4 percent tax.
  • Reduces overpayments to doctors who treat Medicare Advantage patients. It is estimated they are paid 14 percent more than doctors who treat Medicare patients.


Vicente Duque said...

History of Medicare and its enemies : Ronald Reagan, George H. W. Bush, Barry Goldwater, Bob Dole - Exorcizing the AntiChrist of 2009

Before exorcizing the AntiChrist version 2009, I use some History as reported in Wikipedia, Wikipedia gives the bibliography, sources of statements of these politicians

I have in high regard these Republican Politicians of the Past, as Intelligent People, Humane and Kind Men, Moral Beings, Zero Racism, they were probably much better than today's Republicans. Reagonomics may be wrong, but Ronald Reagan was a Great Guy, devoid of Hate and Bad Passions, he had a beautiful Realism that is lacking today.

Medicare in Wikipedia

Some excerpts

Ronald Reagan, at the time a registered Democrat and President of the Screen Actor's Guild, stated in 1961: “If you don’t [stop Medicare] and I don’t do it, one of these days you and I are going to spend our sunset years telling our children and our children’s children what it once was like in America when men were free.”[unreliable source?]

George H. W. Bush, while a candidate for the US Senate in 1964, described Medicare as “socialized medicine.”

Barry Goldwater in 1964: “Having given our pensioners their medical care in kind, why not food baskets, why not public housing accommodations, why not vacation resorts, why not a ration of cigarettes for those who smoke and of beer for those who drink.”

In 1996, while running for the presidency, Bob Dole stated that he was one of 12 House members who voted against creating Medicare in 1965. “I was there, fighting the fight, voting against Medicare ... because we knew it wouldn’t work in 1965.”

My Own Comments :

The Obama Health Care Legislation can't be AntiChrist, Communist, antiGod, or Nazi Extermination.

If Obama, Pelosi and Reid get something and pass a legislation, then I am sure that this would be a reasonable and good proposal, and that it has a lot of Republican Wisdom and Republican Ideas about not spending too much of the Taxpayer's Money.

The Big Machinery of Congress, with so many employees, and the Big Machinery of the Executive can't be wrong. Teddy Roosevelt, Franklin Roosevelt, Harry Truman, Lyndon Johnson, Bill Clinton and even George W. Bush were strongly hated for their failed or successful attempts at Social Legislation and Health care Proposals ( Teddy, Harry and Bill were 100% frustrated )

My Intuition and Guess is that there will be a Health Care Legislation in 2009 or 2010. I also believe that Obama is not the AntiChrist but a Great President in the line of Lincoln, Franklin Roosevelt, or John Kennedy. And that his reforms and achievements will endure.

Please Realize that bean counters, accountants, and budget specialists are the enemies of all good projects. Have you never worked in a corporation or business firm where accountants or auditors are your enemies ?? .... They are very powerful, are listened by the Honchos and are always DR NOs.

And if Obama and friends commit a mistake, then it can be repaired by the same guys or another future government. This is not Foreign Policy, where your mistakes become eternal and almost impossible to repair.

People have extreme difficulty in recognizing and acknowledging the Greatness of Statesmen during their lives.

This will be American Legislation and will incorporate a lot of the American Psyche.

Youth, Minorities and the History of Social Legislation :

Vicente Duque

Vancouver real estate agent said...

"Insurance companies are prohibited from denying coverage based on a pre-existing condition."

This is really great news. Yes, the bill has many flaws, but if there's one good thing, it is the prohibition to deny coverage based on a preexisting condition.

I'm glad I'm only watching this from abroad!

Good luck,

The Great Researcher said...

My problem with this health care bill is very simple: math.

It is projected to cost $1.2 Trillion dollars, or $1,200,000,000,000.

That would be roughly $4,000 per citizen (pop. listed at 304,059,724).

BUT..... according to, only 108 million Americans are working. So...

That would be just over $11,000 in taxes per working person.

But, the government claims they will only tax the $500,000 or more "workers".


According to the IRS, there were 1,039,289 individual tax returns filed with in income over $500,000.

So what would their new tax burden be?

$1,154,635 per tax payer making over $500,000 a year.

And this is on top of what they pay in taxes now.....

I know that the Government failed economics, but did the entire Government fail math too?

Vicente Duque said...

Video : Ronald Reagan Speaks Out Against Socialized Medicine - Republican War against Social Security : Reagan, Gingrich and George W. Bush - They lost - CNN Opinion

From Wikipedia :

Medicare in Wikipedia

Ronald Reagan, at the time a registered Democrat and President of the Screen Actor's Guild, stated in 1961: “If you don’t [stop Medicare] and I don’t do it, one of these days you and I are going to spend our sunset years telling our children and our children’s children what it once was like in America when men were free.”

August 01, 2007
From the 1961 Operation Coffee Cup Campaign against Socialized Medicine as proposed by the Democrats, then a private citizen Ronald Reagan Speaks out against socialized medicine. There is no video because this was an LP sent out by the American Medical Association

Ronald Reagan Speaks Out Against Socialized Medicine

CNN Opinion
Are Republicans too giddy?
By Julian E. Zelizer, Special to CNN
November 10, 2009
From CNN Opinion :

Are Republicans too giddy?

Some excerpts :

The bruising battle over Social Security in 1981 constituted the first real blow to President Reagan. Budget Director David Stockman observed that after Reagan's loss, "the centerpiece of the American welfare state had now been overwhelmingly ratified and affirmed in the white heat of political confrontation."

In 1994, Republicans made a similar mistake. The GOP felt very strong after winning control of the House and Senate for the first time since 1952. But then in 1995 and 1996, Republicans pushed for deep cuts in domestic spending. President Clinton took a stand against the GOP. The federal government temporarily shut down in a dramatic standoff between the president and House Speaker Newt Gingrich.

While Gingrich would win Republicans support for fulfilling the message of the election, voters turned toward Clinton as they saw stories of visitors arriving at a closed National Zoo or unable to receive their passports.

Elderly voters were not happy about the proposed cuts to Medicare. However, the members of Congress in the Class of '94 refused to allow Newt Gingrich to compromise. The Republican freshman, said President Clinton's senior advisor George Stephanopoulos, "had become Newt's Frankenstein's monster -- and my new best friends."

The public started to turn on the Republicans, questioning whether they were capable of governing. The clash diminished some of the fervor for the GOP and forced it to moved away from many goals.

After the 2004 election, President George W. Bush and Republicans felt emboldened. President Bush spoke about the "political capital" that he now had and how he intended to spend it. But when he tried to move forward with his most ambitious domestic proposal, privatizing Social Security, the plan fizzled. Like Reagan, Bush discovered that he misread the public.

Youth, Minorities and History of Social Legislation :

Vicente Duque

ultima said...

Here are some different perspectives on the health care reform bill.

ultima said...

I like the Researcher's analysis of the cost of health care reform. Few have taken the time to think about this. I do need to point out that all of the figures used are for a ten year period so no one will feel the brunt in a single year's taxes. Moreover, when we think about the average cost to those who earn more than $500,000 per year, we also need to some info on the distribution of those costs. There are probably a lot more of those who make just a a little more than $500,000 than there are of those like Bill Gates and Warren Buffet who make a lot more. If the average cost to these people is a little more than $100,000 per year, it would be interesting to know what the cost would be for those in the $500-510K bracket, the 510-520k bracket , etc vs those in the $50,000k+ bracket. Personally, I would rather have seen them remove the cap on taxable social security wages and find some other way to pay for health care reform. That is, our policy should be to fix existing programs before adding new ones.

Vicente Duque said...

Obama should move to the Center or lose Elections - Two false alternatives : Health Care with Public option costing a trillion-dollars, or no bill at all

I have been reading several articles, written by serious and studious pollsters, telling that Obama is going to have a lot of trouble with next elections if he doesn't move to the center of the Political Spectrum.

Obama has to conquer friends ( voters ) who are independent, nonpartisan, and who have a somewhat conservative view of the Economy without being Republicans or Right Wing. The HOT TOPIC now is unemployment and the Economy. So Obama has to dedicate his time to that issue, and begin to make compromises and reach bipartisan solutions with Republicans. ( even if it is painful for Liberals and Leftists ! )

Partisanism and Forcing Health Care is now Death for Obama and the Democrats !

This is a simple matter of winning elections posing as a centrist and avoiding partisanship. Remember that America has delicate and costly matters of Foreign Policy.

Wall Street Journal
Obama Is Losing Independent Voters
A number of recent polls show the president would be wise to shift right.
November 14, 2009

Obama Is Losing Independent Voters

Some excerpts :

The announcement a week ago of 10.2% unemployment is a significant political event for President Barack Obama. It could well usher in a particularly serious crisis for his political standing, influence and ability to advance his agenda.

Double-digit unemployment drove Ronald Reagan's disapproval ratings in October 1982 up to a record high 54%. It was only when unemployment dropped to 7.3%, roughly two years later, that he was able to win a landslide victory over Democratic challenger Walter Mondale in the 1984 presidential election.

Similarly, Franklin Roosevelt's success in the 1930s in reducing the 25% unemployment rate he inherited down to the mid-teens was almost certainly responsible for his success in the 1934 midterm elections and in the 1936 presidential elections.

A CNN poll released Nov. 6 found that 47% of Americans believe the top issue facing the country is the economy, while only 17% say its health care. However, the bulk of the president's efforts over the past six months have been not on the economy but on health care, an issue in which he continues to draw negative ratings.

What then, is Mr. Obama to do?

He has found himself in a false and arguably artificial conundrum on health care, with the two alternatives being his bill with a public option and a trillion-dollar price tag, or no bill at all. While the failure to pass a health-care bill could be devastating for his administration, polling suggests that ramming through an expensive bill with a public option (potentially using procedural techniques in the Senate) could divide America and not improve his standing with the public.

Voters would like to see compromises on key elements of health care to reduce costs, while the Democrats' plan has appeared to focus largely on expanding coverage. According to a poll conducted by Rasmussen Reports from Oct. 2-3, 61% of likely voters want Congress to act this year but only 45% favor the current plan. There is a clear, bipartisan majority who favor a less costly bill that incrementally increases coverage, provides insurance reform involving pre-existing conditions, and experiments with tort reform and competition across state lines.

Deficit reduction and reining in spending are critically important priorities for the vast majority of the electorate. Indeed, according to a Rasmussen Reports Poll conducted at the end of last month, voters say deficit reduction is most important and health care is a distant second.

Youth, Minorities, Politics :

Vicente Duque

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