Deconstructing the Right Wing Lies on the Health Insurance Bill — Pages 1-500

(Thanks to a reader, I found another source of right wing crap on the health care bill, so there is now a part II to this post. As you may have noted, the right wingers who came up with this piece crapped out at page 500; their ADD must have kicked in. But this new source, a group of right wing Christian lawyers, no less, have gone much farther. Part II can be found here... part III is coming very soon… )

right's lies  about the current health
insurance proposals before Congress have rarely been compiled in such concise
form before. 


follows is
an article from the Right Wing blog ChronWatch


Page After Page of
Reasons to Hate ObamaCare

By Alan Caruba


problem is, there's something missing, such as context. See, the writer is
expecting the reader to take everything as gospel, and agree that it's bad,
without any sort of explanation.  It's a
list of all of the things that are wrong with the current state of the health
care reform bill before Congress. If you'd like to follow along, feel free
click here to go to the bill itself
. In fact, I would encourage you to look at it for yourself; it's an easy way to learn what's actually in it, without having to read through all of the legalese.


not called Please Cut the Crap for no reason. Below each item the right wing assures readers we're supposed
to hate, I've inserted context, and explained why you really shouldn't hate
it. Unless you should. All of my responses are italicized and printed in red,
so that you can tell whose words are whose.

I'll warn you, this is a long one, but it's an important one, so get a glass of tea, print this out, and read it to everyone who spews one of these talking points, because this really does touch on pretty much all of the right's talking points. And now you'll be able to refute them. Isn't that cool?

Now, let's continue with the article. 


Here are just a few
very good reasons to hate ObamaCare:

• Page 22: 
Mandates audits of all employers that self-insure!


First of all, it starts on page 21, not 22, and it simply mandates a study of risk
on the part of all companies that choose to provide self-insurance, to make sure they are capitalized properly. This is something that private insurance
companies are required to do; it's to protect the consumer. Say you work at a
company with their own health insurance system; how would you like to find out
after you've received a $100,000 bill for a hospital stay, that the
insurance pool can't pay the bill?


This is also important because when they can't pay the bills, then everyone else with
insurance ends up picking up the slack. Got that? That's the reason health insurance
premiums have more than doubled in the last ten years, and are scheduled to
double again in the next ten, if nothing changes


Anyway, why should companies acting as health insurance companies be
allowed to operate under different rules than insurance companies? Isn't that
unfair competition?


• Page 29:
 Admission: your health care will be rationed!


The section actually starts on page 26, and it's entitled:


There is absolutely NO
section in there, from page 26 through page 30, that indicates rationing of any
kind. Looking at Page 29 specifically, it contains a section called
"Annual Limitation." A-HA! See? It's a LIMITATION! That's the same as
rationing, right? Didn't they admit rationing?


Well, no. Because the limit is on the amount that people will have
to pay out in cost-sharing, should the agency implementing the bill decide to
use a version of cost-sharing. The limit is on how much a patient will have to
pay, not a limit on the health care the patient receives.Watch how many times these tools bring up the "rationing" canard. It's almost as often as they mention ACORN. (I kid you not. Just wait.)


See what I mean when I say we have to watch these people, and check
their "facts?"


• Page 30:  A
government committee will decide what treatments and benefits you get (and,
unlike an insurer, there will be no appeals process)


The section on Page 30 establishes an advisory committee, and yes;
they will decide which treatments and benefits you get. I'm unsure as to why
this is a bad thing. I don't want my health insurance premiums going to
Britney's boob job, even if I have private insurance. Which reminds me; does
this bozo actually think private insurance companies don't have a list of
acceptable treatments and benefits? 


There is one difference here, though. The committee's
recommendations will be published and the public will have access to them.
Which means they will be able to offer input to the process.


Oh, and there is nothing here about "no appeals process."
The Committee will simply recommend processes for implementation. Not only that, but varying appeals processes are laid out in detail throughout the bill. So, he lied about that…


• Page 42:  The
“Health Choices Commissioner” will decide health benefits for you.  You
will have no choice.  None.


See above.  The Commissioner
will simply oversee implementation of the rules that are decided upon by the
Commission. He or she will be responsible for making sure that everyone is
held accountable up and down the line. Nothing in the bill gives power to a
"czar," who will make health benefits decisions. The commission and
the Secretary will make decisions on benefits as changes become necessary.
Again; I'm not sure why this is a bad thing, except that right wingers don't
seem fond of accountability.Well, unless we're talking about unskilled poor people who get welfare money.


• Page 50:  All
non-U.S. citizens, illegal or not, will be provided with free healthcare


Now, when you read something like this, you half expect to see
something mandating that non-US citizens be given "free health care."


The funny thing is, the word FREE only appears one time in the entire bill, and it is not coupled with the term "health care." People will be provided
with a new health care choice, based on their income, to a certain extent. So
we can toss that little red herring off the boat right away. NO ONE will
receive free health care. I mean, unless they win some sort of sweepstakes or
something.I guess that's possible.


No, the section the wingnut refers to is entitled:


What is says is:

"… [A]ll health care and related services
(including insurance coverage and public health activities) covered by this Act
shall be provided without regard to personal characteristics extraneous to the
provision of high quality health care or related services."

The word "free" isn't in there. It just means that no one
can be denied insurance coverage or health care because of their looks, or because they're wearing robes or a burqa. But
nothing in there says undocumented immigrants will be able to scam
"free" health care. In other words, you can only call that a lie.


• Page 58: 
Every person will be issued a National ID Healthcard.


No, it says everyone who opts into the public insurance system MAY be issued a health identification card, if the commission thinks that's a good idea. But
the bill doesn't mandate it. It's quite possible the insurance commission
will recommend that states implement the public health insurance option, and some states may put the information on your driver's license or state ID card. And again; the only people who will need a card are those with public insurance.


And what's wrong with this idea, anyway? I've never had
health insurance from a private company from which I didn’t receive an
identification card.


• Page 59:  The
federal government will have direct, real-time access to all individual bank
accounts for electronic funds transfer.


Wow. Is that scary,
or what? Only one problem; it's a lie. And I don't mean he's mistaken; I mean,
he's lying. Here's what it says:

‘‘The standards under this section shall be developed, adopted and
enforced so as to… (C) enable electronic funds transfers, in order to allow
automated reconciliation with the related health care payment and remittance

It clearly refers to payment for the health care, not payment of the
premium. Most health care companies love this, and will adopt it. But it
is still their choice, just as it could be your choice to pay your health
insurance premiums by direct transfer, check or payroll deduction. As is the
case now.


• Page 65: 
Taxpayers will subsidize all union retiree and community organizer health plans
(read: SEIU, UAW and ACORN)


Once more, it doesn't say that. 
What it does say is:



(1) IN GENERAL.—Not later than 90 days after the date of the
enactment of this Act, the Secretary of Health and Human Services shall
establish a temporary reinsurance program (in this section referred to as the ‘‘reinsurance program’’) to provide reimbursement to
assist participating employment-based plans with the cost of providing health benefits to retirees and to
eligible spouses, surviving spouses and dependents of such retirees.


Okay, you'll note the word PARTICIPATING in the above.  To anyone who would bother to slide down a
couple of paragraphs, past the definitions, all of which define the terms in
the above, and do not include the word "mandatory" anywhere, to Page
67, we find:

(b) PARTICIPATION.—To be eligible to participate in the reinsurance
program, an eligible employment-based plan shall submit to the Secretary an
application for participation in the program, at such time, in such manner, and
containing such information as the Secretary shall require.

So, it's all voluntary. Not only that, but it's REINSURANCE, which
means the participating plan will be providing their capital to the federal
government to fund the plan. I would also point out that members of unions such as SEIU and UAW
are also taxpayers, and they currently purchase private insurance for retired
members.  And if ACORN isn't a red
herring, I don't know what is. I'm not aware that ACORN provides health
insurance to anyone. But hey; it's not true racist wingnuttery until you invoke
ACORN, eh? This isn't the last time you'll see it.


• Page 72:  All
private healthcare plans must conform to government rules to participate in a
Healthcare Exchange.


This is a phenomenally silly complaint from a right wing
ideological perspective, and it lays bare the moral bankruptcy in their
arguments against universal health care. These are the same people who are
always touting competition and choice as the most important aspects of
capitalism. The point of the insurance exchange is to give people an obvious
and transparent choice of health insurance options. A private insurance company
can participate and offer their wares alongside the public option, if they so
choose. If they don't want to participate, they're free to conduct business as
usual, and they won't have to conform to any
government rules. Well, except for the ones they must already conform with, whenever the Bush Administration's not in office.
They've always had to conform to government rules to participate in Medicare, and I
don't see any of them dropping out of business for that.


• Page 84:  All
private healthcare plans must participate in the Healthcare Exchange (i.e.,
total government control of private plans)


Again, this is a lie. There are
requirements for those choosing to participating in the Health Exchange, but there is absolutely no
mandate to join.  And if there is going
to be competition, it should be on a level playing field, which is
what the Exchange creates.  It creates an
easy-to-read set of options, which insurance companies are free to enhance, and
all companies who participate are instructed to offer several levels of plans. If you really think about it rationally, and not the right wing way, the Exchange actually enhances the private insurance companies'
chances of survival. But these idiots want to kill it.  If there's a public option available at a
competitive price per month, insurance companies can offer two other tiers of
service, with whatever enhancements they want to include, for a higher price.
So, rather than offering "total government control," it actually
allows insurance companies an opportunity to offer several tiers of "enhanced" service, to enhance their


• Page 91:
 Government mandates linguistic infrastructure for services; translation:
illegal aliens


There's that perpetual racist component
again. My great-grandmother couldn't read English well enough to follow medical
instructions when I was a kid in the 1960s, and she had been in this country
since she fled the Nazis in the 1930s. I know this, because she used to have me
read stuff to her when I was 6. By the way, she was from Poland, and she was
very, very white. Hundreds of thousands of people come here legally from all
over the world, without knowing English sufficiently, and they occasionally get
sick. Hell, half the right wingers in this country legally can't speak English
well enough to read a Congressional bill, let alone a doctor's instructions.


• Page 95:  The
Government will pay ACORN and Americorps to sign up individuals for
Government-run Health Care plan.


Once more, they invoke ACORN. The above is too silly to even bother
with, except to say that informing people of their options and helping them
sign up seems remarkably similar to the teams of people the private insurance
companies send out to workplaces during "open enrollment." Just


• Page 102:
 Those eligible for Medicaid will be automatically enrolled: you have no
choice in the matter.


Those eligible for Medicaid already have public health insurance.
The reason they qualify for Medicaid is because they are poor and have no
choices. What sense does it make to have two separate public health plans;
Medicaid and this new plan. I mean, this is purely stupid, folks. Page 102 makes clear that Medicaid will be folded into this new plan when it passes. It's a no-brainer.

But I will say this; people on Medicaid will actually have just as much choice as they've always had; probably more.


• Page 124:  No
company can sue the government for price-fixing.  No “judicial review” is
permitted against the government monopoly.  Put simply, private insurers
will be crushed.


This is also extremely inaccurate, if not an outright lie. There is
no "price-fixing." First of all, the bill refers to the same
rate-setting  statutes the government has
always followed with Medicare and Medicaid. It has to do with the rates they
pay for procedures, and the process includes medical providers and follows them
very closely. The doctors and medical corporations still set the prices in that
system, and private insurers will be free to negotiate higher or lower payment
prices if they wish. They don't pay the same as Medicare and Medicaid for procedures now, and no one's complaining about "price fixing."


You know what? This isn't just inaccurate,
it's dishonest.


• Page 127: 
The AMA sold doctors out: the government will set wages.


Once again, the bill doesn't say that. In fact, the language is
almost exactly the same as the language in Medicare, and it says absolutely
nothing about anyone's "wages." The entire section is about rates for
procedures and treatment,  and physicians
are free to apply in any category they choose, just as they are now with


The level of dishonesty in this one is astounding. Every
single private health insurance company in the market negotiates rates for procedures
with participating physicians, and physicians are not allowed to charge any
more than that amount. In other words, they do the same thing Medicare does.
The only difference is, Medicare pays every claim short of fraud, while
insurance companies routinely deny claims, and try every trick they can think of to not pay at all. And they wonder why we're gunning for them…


• Page 145:  An
employer MUST auto-enroll employees into the government-run public plan.
 No alternatives.


This one is pure crap. There's no other way to put it.  Here's what it actually says:



21 (a) IN GENERAL.—An employer meets the
requirements of this section with respect to an employee if the following
requirements are met:

(1) OFFERING OF COVERAGE.—The employer offers the
coverage described in section 311(1) either

through an Exchange-participating health
benefits  plan or other than through such
a plan.

timely pays to the issuer of such coverage an amount not less than the employer
required contribution specified in subsection (b) for such coverage.8 (3)
PROVISION OF INFORMATION.—The employer provides the Health Choices
Commissioner, the Secretary of Labor, the Secretary of Health and Human
Services, and the Secretary of the Treasury, as applicable, with such
information as the Commissioner may require to ascertain compliance with the
requirements of this section.

provides for autoenrollment of the employee in accordance with subsection (c).


In other words, IF the employer opts into the public insurance
system, THEN he must provide for the autoenrollment of employees… again a choice.
But here's the really dishonest part. Just a few paragraphs later, there is
this little section (Page 148):


(2) OPT-OUT.—In no case may an employer
automatically enroll an employee in a plan under paragraph (1) if such employee
makes an affirmative election to opt out of such plan or to elect coverage
under an employment-based health benefits plan offered by such employer. An
employer shall provide an employee with a 30-day period to make such an
affirmative election before the employer may automatically enroll the employee
in such a plan.


Remember; this lying wingnut said "no alternatives."
Strange, but I see an employer being able to choose not to participate in the
public insurance system. And every employee has the choice to opt-out; it says
so right in the bill. Those seem like alternatives. Even if you're not the best at math, you have to know that two is greater than zero, right?


• Page 126: 
Employers MUST pay healthcare bills for part-time employees AND their families.


Again, an absolute lie. The page number is 146, not 126, which is a quibble. But
employers are not required to pay healthcare bills for anyone. IF they CHOOSE
to participate in the public insurance system, they are required to
autoenroll employees in the insurance, unless the employee chooses to opt out.
But the INSURANCE pays the bills, not the employers. Employers will not be required to pay for the procedures themselves, unless they opt to self-insure. But that's hardly a mandate, is it?


• Page 149:
 Any employer with a payroll of $400K or more, who does not offer the
public option, pays an 8% tax on payroll.

• Page 150: 
Any employer with a payroll of $250K-400K or more, who does not offer the
public option, pays a 2 to 6% tax on payroll.


More lies. The section ONLY refers to any employer who doesn't offer ANY
insurance to his employees. If they offer either private insurance or the public insurance, they do not have to pay the 8%, regardless of the size of their payroll. The purpose of the public
insurance system is to cover as many people as possible. An employee of such an
employer who wants to buy the public insurance will have to pay an amount
indexed to the probably meager pay the cheapskate employer is paying. (Think fast food franchise
where everyone works for $8 an hour or less.) The fund created by this tax
will subsidize the purchase of health insurance for these people.


An employer with a tiny payroll will pay considerably less, but
again; ONLY if he doesn't participate in the public insurance system. Here's
the table.


If the annual payroll of such employer for the
preceding calendar year:

The applicable percentage is:

Does not exceed $250,000
………………………………. 0 percent

Exceeds $250,000, but does not exceed $300,000 2

Exceeds $300,000, but does not exceed $350,000 4

Exceeds $350,000, but does not exceed $400,000 6


So, if they have a really small business, say 10 employees making
$24,000 each, and don't offer insurance, they get off scot-free. In fact, if
they have 20 employees making $15,000 per year, they only pay $6,000 into the

If you ask me, there's a gap here. Really small cheapskate business
owners are going to get off light, and all other taxpayers will have to foot
more of the bill as a result.


• Page 167: 
Any individual who doesn't have acceptable healthcare (according to the
government) will be taxed 2.5% of income.


Yay! Finally, they got one right. Well, partially right, anyway.


Anyone without health insurance — specifically those who choose to
run around without health insurance because they're too cheap and stupid —
will now have to pay something into a system that is required to take care of
them when they contract a serious illness or get hit by a bus. Let's see… if
the guy makes $100,000 per year, the total tax is $2,500, which is far less than he would pay for health insurance now. And for those who
think this is especially unfair to rich people who choose not to carry
insurance because of their immense wealth, don't
worry; the amount is capped at the size of the average health insurance premium. In return,
the rest of us won't have to pick up the tab when the uninsured numb nuts is
wheeled into the emergency room for a trauma because he was riding his dirt bike and slammed into a tree while not wearing a helmet. .


In other words, this is something to applaud, not to hate. It should
encourage people to opt into the insurance system, which saves everyone money.


• Page 170:
 Any NON-RESIDENT alien is exempt from individual taxes (Americans will
pay for them).


This wingnut sure does have an obsession with immigrants. By the
way, NON-RESIDENT ALIEN means someone who doesn't LIVE here. In almost all
other countries, there is a national health insurance system, and their
government will pay for their health care. Why would we tax them for something
they won’t use in most cases?


• Page 195:
 Officers and employees of Government Healthcare Bureaucracy will have
access to ALL American financial and personal records.


And we get back to the lies.

The agency will have extremely limited
access to SOME information contained in IRS TAX records for those individuals
choosing to participate in the public health insurance system, in order to
determine eligibility for certain premium discounts. There are strict limits on
the info they will have access to, and there is a strict prohibition on passing
the information anywhere else.It is most certainly NOT "ALL American financial and personal records."


• Page 203:
 “The tax imposed under this section shall not be treated as tax.” Yes, it
really says that.


No, actually, it doesn't. What is it about wingnuts that makes them think
they can put a period anywhere they want, and change the meaning of something,
and no one will notice? Here's what it REALLY says:

‘‘(4) NOT TREATED AS TAX IMPOSED BY THIS CHAPTER FOR CERTAIN PURPOSES.—The tax imposed under this section shall not be treated as tax
imposed by this chapter for purposes of determining the amount of any credit under this chapter or for purposes of
section 55.’’'

I can't explain what this means. I'm simply pointing out that it doesn't "really say" what they say it says…

•Page 239:
 Bill will reduce physician services for Medicaid.  Seniors and the
poor most affected.”


This is also a lie. The entire section has to do with reducing the
number of physician services used to compute health care growth rates from 2011
on. There is absolutely no provision to reduce services for Medicaid. In fact,
Medicaid will be folded into the public insurance system, which makes the above
assertion just insane.


• Page 241: 
Doctors: no matter what speciality you have, you’ll all be paid the same
(thanks, AMA!)


See above. Another lie. It's another part
of the section dealing with predicting costs. Specifically, it deals with
"conversion factors. There is nothing in there mandating what anyone gets
paid for anything.


• Page 253: 
Government sets value of doctors’ time, their professional judgment, etc.

• Page 265:
 Government mandates and controls productivity for private healthcare

• Page 268: 
Government regulates rental and purchase of power-driven wheelchairs.


These are
just insane. The first one doesn't set values for anything. It simply adjusts
the method for coming up with values later on. Which makes sense, because
covering everyone will drop the health care inflation rate tremendously,
especially after the first few years. 
The second evaluates productivity and offer incentives to increase
efficiency and productivity. As for the last one, why wouldn't the government
regulate the rental and purchase of power-driven wheelchairs they intend to
buy? You think private insurance companies just go to Wal-Mart? And read it
carefully; all it does is extend Medicare regulations to the public insurance
system. Why is it suddenly not good enough?


• Page 272: 
Cancer patients: welcome to the wonderful world of rationing!


They love that word "rationing."
If only they knew what it meant.

Essentially, there is no rationing anywhere in
this bill. And anyone who doesn't think private insurance rations health care
has never encountered a denied claim. But not only does the section they point
to NOT impose anything close to "rationing," it promises to pay EXTRA
to hospitals that specialize in cancer treatment. EXTRA!

Since when does "rationing" constitute EXTRA anything? Bet our grandparents are pissed to know that gas rationing during World War II meant they could get extra.


• Page 280:
 Hospitals will be penalized for what the government deems preventable

• Page 298: 
Doctors: if you treat a patient during an initial admission that results in a
readmission, you will be penalized by the government.


Okay, the first one's not entirely a lie, although it doesn’t say
"preventable readmissions;" it says "EXCESSIVE readmissions," and there is a significant difference. It
merely extends a policy that's been standard under Medicare for years. It
encourages doctors to make sure they aren't treating the hospital as an
assembly line and making sure people are treated properly the first time. It
also goes a long way to keeping hypochondriacs out of the hospital to a
significant degree, and keeping costs down.


The second one, on the other hand, is completely made up. First of
all, the page number is wrong. But it rewards efficiency. Think about it this
way. Suppose you take your car in to have the air conditioning repaired, and
the shop charges you $200. If you have to take it in two more times for the
same problem, are you going to accept them charging you $200 more each time? Of
course not. Well, why shouldn't doctors be encouraged to do everything possible
to fix a problem the first time? Not only that, but imagine a medical office
scamming the insurance company/government by purposely not treating everything
the first time, so that they can get more money for more readmissions? This
measure actually increases efficiency.


Imagine that; these wingnuts actually have a problem with the
government encouraging efficiency and conbatting waste, and keeping the cost of health
care down.


• Page 317:
 Doctors: you are now prohibited for owning and investing in healthcare

• Page
318:  Prohibition on hospital expansion.  Hospitals cannot expand
without government approval.

• Page 321:  Hospital expansion hinges on “community”
input: in other words, yet another payoff for ACORN.


Surprise; more lies The bill prohibits doctors from referring
patients to hospitals in which they have a significant ownership interest
in,  without disclosing to the patient
that he indeed has an ownership stake in the hospital. The government also
prohibits "self-referral" under most circumstances. That's actually
fair to all of the other hospitals. There is absolutely zero prohibition on
doctors having ownership of hospitals. 
What this tool is citing has to do with rural areas. It's to prevent one
physician from effectively controlling all aspects of health care in a region,
where possible.


But once more; doctors are not prohibited from doing anything,
except creating a monopoly and locking others out of a market. And the
"community input" provision is just common sense. Note, another ACORN
reference, and there is no way it applies here at all. I'm not aware of ACORN
being involved in hospital expansion in rural areas.


• Page 335:
 Government mandates establishment of outcome-based measures: i.e.,


I don't even have to look this one up, but I did anyway. Another


Outcome-based healthcare is common sense. And it has nothing to do
with "rationing." In fact, rationing is the exact OPPOSITE of
"outcome-based" care. By emphasizing quality care, you reduce the
number of ER and urgent care admissions, and you reduce the number of
readmissions, as well. Again; it's the opposite of rationing. Rationing is what
private insurance companies do. I'm reminded of that guy at the beginning of
Michael Moore's film, "Sicko," in which some poor guy had a choice of
which finger he would like to have reattached. "Outcome based" care
would have repaired both fingers and made the guy a productive citizen again.
Health care "rationing" forced him to choose the cheapest finger to


• Page 341:
 Government has authority to disqualify Medicare Advantage Plans, HMOs,


They already have the ability to regulate and disqualify Medicare
Advantage plans.. In other words, this maintains the status quo .  Oh, and it says absolutely nothing about
"HMOS, etc."


• Page 354: 
Government will restrict enrollment of SPECIAL NEEDS individuals.


No. That's not what it says. What it says is, it will begin to phase
such special needs individuals into the public health insurance system. IOW,
those people who qualify for Medicaid and people under 65 who qualify for
Medicare will be eligible for this system instead. Seriously, can wingnuts read
at all?


• Page 379: 
More bureaucracy: Telehealth Advisory Committee (healthcare by phone).

• Page 425: 
More bureaucracy: Advance Care Planning Consult: Senior Citizens, assisted
suicide, euthanasia?

• Page 425: 
Government will instruct and consult regarding living wills, durable powers of
attorney, etc.  Mandatory.  Appears to lock in estate taxes ahead of

• Page 425:
 Government provides approved list of end-of-life resources, guiding you
in death.

• Page 427:
 Government mandates program that orders end-of-life treatment; government
dictates how your life ends.

• Page 429: 
Advance Care Planning Consult will be used to dictate treatment as patient’s
health deteriorates.  This can include an ORDER for end-of-life plans.

• Page 430: 
Government will decide what level of treatments you may have at end-of-life.


More bureaucracy than the private insurer's tendency to automatically
deny claims over $1500, and force you to call them in order to get the bill
paid? Have you ever been to a hospital's administrative offices? There is no
more bureaucracy than in the private health insurance industry.


That said, Telehealth has been around for years, and has saved
Medicare countless dollars by directing seniors to services. This merely
expands the concept to people covered under the public insurance system.
Imagine; more service; what a concept, right?


The rest are pure paranoia. The Advance Care Planning Consultation
system has also been around for years, and I'm unaware of a spate of senior
suicides or euthanasia as a result. It simply encourages people to consult with
their doctors, and get all of the options available for either planning for the
end, or working to create a higher quality of life. I'm sure almost everyone
knows someone with a debilitating disease, such as multiple sclerosis or
diabetes; advance care planning reduces the likelihood that these people will
constantly show up at urgent care or the ER for minor problems that they
themselves can take care of.


• Page 469: 
Community-based Home Medical Services: more payoffs for ACORN.

• Page 472: 
Payments to Community-based organizations: more payoffs for ACORN.


Two more gratuitous mentions of ACORN. And
what's wrong with either of the above?


• Page 489: 
Government will cover marriage and family therapy.  Government intervenes
in your marriage.


This one is silly, of course. Unless the government starts mandating
marriage and family therapy, and then conducts the therapy themselves, the
"intervention" isn't happening. I mean, many health insurance plans
cover psychiatric services under some conditions, but no one is suggesting that
Blue Cross or CIGNA is trying to control your mind.


• Page 494: 
Government will cover mental health services: defining, creating and rationing
those services.


Of course, it merely adds them to the Medicare mix. There is nothing
to define, create or ration them in this bill.


I guess they became tired, because they got tired of lying about
halfway through the bill. There are over 500 more pages to this thing.


A tip of my hat to
my friend, Ben Cerruti, for providing this look at the Obamanation called


Yes, thank him for lying his ass off, and
giving me a chance to cut the crap, big time. I'd been working on a piece about
right wing health care lies, and this gave me a chance to dispel most of them
in one fell swoop. I mean, all of these lies in one piece. How do these people
sleep at night?


Write, e-mail, fax, or call your senators and your representative
and tell them to vote NO!


If you tell them that, you're a fool. The CBO estimates that, with
no changes to the health care system, premiums will increase by $1800 per year
for the next ten years. That means an family will pay an average annual premium
of more than $32,000 by then. And that's assuming that the 47 million people
without insurance doesn't increase tremendously. This offers everyone a chance
at affordable health insurance, and stops the health care inflation that has
crippled our economy for decades. But more than that, it will make us a proud
nation, that cares about its people once again.


Stop letting these wingnut idiots lie their asses off. Read what I
wrote above, and compare it to what's actually in the bill. It's really not as
long as it sounds, by the way; if the bill was written single spaced, with
normal margins, it would probably be a couple of hundred pages at best. But
look through it, and what you'll find is a plan that is very thoughtful and
measured, and provides access to everyone.


Call your Congressperson and Senators, and ask them one simple


Do you REALLY want to be on record as having voted against health
insurance for all this year?


This is going to happen. If not this year, then we throw out the
assholes who vote against it, and put in someone who will. Our country is
becoming second-rate right before our eyes, and one reason is the money we're
flushing away on health care for no one, while thousands of people die and
thousands of others are pushed to financial ruin.


The fact that the opposition can do nothing but lie to get their
point across means that even they believe universal health insurance is
necessary. Either that, or they like seeing their rates double every decade…

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Copyright 2009 The PCTC Blog


  1. Wow. You sure did choose a good pseudonym.
    1. Yes, this bill will save everyone money because, even if nothing else changes, it covers everyone, so the people with insurance will no longer be subsidizing those without insurance.
    2. This does not create a system of socialized medicine, as Britain has, so there is no comparison. It only provides for the government to fill in gaps, that’s all.
    3. To think this bill is about “control” indicates that you don’t understand what’s written in the bill. I mean, seriously; this bill creates a public insurance OPTION, and forces insurance companies to offer their policies on an open market. In other words, it stabilizes the health care financing system and forces the companies to actually compete. It also effectively removes the current federal barriers to insurance companies operating between states. That looks like the opposite of “control.”
    4. Employers are only required to pay 74% of the bill in this plan, which is approximately the amount they pay now. But the current health care inflation rate, which is currently running between 11-15% per year, will effectively be eliminated, so employers won’t be facing premiums that have doubled in the last 10 years, and will probably double again in the next 10, if nothing is done.
    The rest of your rant just proves you have no idea what you’re talking about, but I want to address that last question.
    Private insurance companies right now intervene in the doctor-patient relationship. With this bill, that will pretty much end. Except to establish guidelines with regard to the parameters of the basic health care that is to be covered, this bill FORBIDS insurance companies (including the public one) from intervening in the doctor-patient relationship.
    Now, go educate yourself. If you want to rant that long, start your own blog. This is a “comment” section, not a “write your own blog” section, Id10t.

  2. Ok. This is really humorous. Is this bill to save us money? The British Healthcare system is the largest employer in the world.
    This bill is about control.
    One question: if they have our best interests in mind, why aren’t they including members of congress or previous members in the bill? The bill is written in such a “legal-ese” fashion as to confuse anyone reading it. The purpose of the bill is to stick a foot in the door so that they can in the future pass their own political agenda to control your choices. One payer health systems (which is essentially what the bill will eventually cause) have been tried before- check canada and england. Find out why people from these countries are having to go to neighboring countries for their care. Do you think this is going to save us (as a country) money?? China is already beginning to wonder if we will ever be able to pay our debt to them. Do you think that when we spend more and more that it will get better? Look at the government employees and governmental run institutions already. Do you think these institutions (civil service) attract the best and the brightest?? Do you think they are efficient and that they get things done quickly and cheaply?? Look at how we spend in military applications– the $200 hammer of the old days should suffice for an example. Anytime the government is involved things all of a sudden become MORE expensive and MORE inefficient. So you say, well what about those who don’t have healthcare as of present?? There is a small subset of the population who falls into this category (make too much to be medicaid and too young to be medicare and not choosing to elect for their employer’s healthcare benefits, or their employeer cannot provide benefits because it is too small). This is partially because of restrictive laws which govern small business (one of the largest employer groups in the nation) access to healtcare-(for instance 2 or more small businesses cannot join together to gain access to more favorable insurance group plans and plan minimums are for 5 or more employees). Right now as it stands, EMTALA covers any person who needs healthcare at ANY hospital. This is subsidized by the hospitals and the doctors and the insurance companies (in a variety of ways, including simply writing off bills and giving free care because of the financial hardship, and insurance companies are paying more than medicare which in a way subsidizes this).
    now tell me this: do you think that if the cost is reduced and a government payer is introduced that people will continue to elect to stay on their companies insurances or will they go to the government payer? well let’s say you are a small business owner and have the minimum number of employees on your plan (or let’s say 10 which is 5 more than is required by law to qualify for a group plan). these people typically have to pay 25% of their premiums. If the government steps in, some may opt for the lower cost plan which will potentially cause the small business to no longer qualify for healthcare for their employees which will then trickle down to causing all of the employees to have to change to the system. Now you say ok so what is so bad about that? Next, you have reduced cost to enter the doctor’s office. Have you ever been to an all inclusive resort or a cruise? If they charged a mere $1 for each drink or food item regardless of how much the food or drink was worth, do you think they would have so much waste and gluttony as if it were free? do you think the lines would be as long? do you think people who were really hungry or thirsty would take preference over those who were just going to get their “money’s worth” out of the institution?? well this is what would happen and costs would skyrocket. Now we will need more doctors because more access means more people will be going more frequently for less important things and more doctors means paying more doctors– now doctors are a pretty smart crowd and they don’t like to be controlled. They will change the rules to suit them. The best and the brightest will go elsewhere. They won’t go to medical school any more and those practicing will either make up the reduction in their income by increasing volume and if this didn’t work, leave the profession. Eventually the doctors who remained would become government employees. A great example of government run healtcare with government doctors is the VA Medical Center. Do you think this is a good system? would you have liked to be one of the several thousand veterans who contracted HIV from improperly sterilized instruments? do you think the veterans have a recourse? sure they will be cared for but do you think this is worth the risk? Also, the antiretroviral drugs required to treat HIV are upwards of severral thousand dollars a month. Do you think the drug companies will continue to make great drugs when there is less profit incentive? who will be allowed access to expensive drugs? how much suffering will be necessary before the government decides it will allow that procedure? will it be allocated to someone else because they suffered more than you? these are the problems the english and the canadians are facing as we speak.
    Why would they do this if they really have our best interests in mind? The only logical choice is: CONTROL. They want to control your choices, your doctors, your future. This is socialism in a form. Our country was founded on the premise that we are a free market, a democracy. since when has governmental intervention been introduced into the definition of “laissez faire”?? Is this really what you want? Ask yourself long and hard. Educate yourself. Who will benefit most from this plan and will there be MORE in need after the full ramifications have come to fruition? Why are they leaving earmarks in the bill to exclude members of congress?? Why wont they allow amendments which state “the government will never be allowed to intervene in the doctor-patient relationship?”

  3. Well done Milt Shook,you have said it like it is.I am Canadian but I am as interested in your Country and its problems, as I am with my own.The trouble lies in a writer’s honesty-and it seems to me someone has an axe to grind. I have read many articles which seem to point to President Obama as probably the type of guy I would think will more than do the right thing for Americans. I say this because one article I read pointed toward “Alternative medicare” as well as normal Medicare.This should rank Obama a step higher than the rest. I suggest you allow him this privelege.

  4. And, I think if those people come back here we should then deny them service and then send them to appear before a death panel made up of Illegal Aliens, ACORN Employees, Union Members, and just some homeless people we grab off the street. 🙂

  5. Milt, I just wanted to reply and thank you for this thoughtful treatice. Sorry to say it was from a relative, but I received this compilation of lies through a relative that he got forwarded to him from some wingnut who must think is a realiable source of information. Even Sean Hannity stopped believing in them.
    I didn’t go through all of them, but I looked into 22 of them. I have 11 years of experience reading law and finding out from judges whether or not my interpretations were accurate, but no legal degree.
    Law is tedious but not difficult to interpret, and my readings were practically identical to yours–completely as to the extent of lying going on out there. Nobody who can write well enough to lie can possibly get that much that far wrong.
    As for the infamous tax that isn’t a tax. There are references around p. 203 to non-resident CITIZENS and references to International Treatings and to the avoidance of taxes.
    I didn’t know where to find section 55, or exactly what that is, but I’m fairly sure p. 203 and the pages around it is and are about non-resident (American tax avoiding) citizens, living abroad, who suddenly get sick and want to come back here for treatment on the rest of our dimes.
    Keep up the good work.

  6. Outstanding job! Thank you. After much searching, this is the most comprehensive breakdown that I could find. Now if I can get it in over the shouts, we’ll be all set.

  7. I probably should have been more specific. The language is clear where it deals specifically with how to pay providers. NO bill that goes through Congress is actually “clear as a bell.”
    But that part IS pretty clear. The entire section deals with paying providers. I guess I’m just confused as to why this is even an issue. The government literally has NO power to touch your bank account for any reason without a court order. And I am wracking my brain trying to think of a reason why they would need a direct connection to an individual bank account, if that individual wasn’t a provider.
    And I only use “invective” when dealing with dishonest people. You’re expressing an honest disagreement. I have no problem with that. I am simply trying to understand your objections.

  8. I am disappointed to read you that you feel the language of this bill is “clear as a bell”. It is not, about that I have no reservations. I made no statement about debiting an individual account to pay a provider nor am I obsessed with the federal government having access to my bank account or anyone else’s. In fact, in one business I owned, I found it highly desirable to require that weekly payments for services be made via electronic funds transfers before services were rendered. As you note, self-insured individuals who opt for a government plan would be responsible for a premium – if that premium, in order to be received timely must be paid through an electronic funds transfer – so be it. Nor am I concerned about federal officials draining my bank account as you suggest. We could continue this debate with a number of other issues where the wording in this bill is vague and ambiguous,but I see no point. I strongly suspect that my interpretation and yours would agree in some instances and differ in others and in some would no doubt both be different from what the writers intended to convey. I appreciate and exchange free of the invective I read in some posts.

  9. The language in this bill is clear as a bell. the issue in the section has to do with payments to providers. Now, please explain to the class why YOUR bank account information would have to be collected by the government, in order to pay providers? And since no one is forcing you to buy the public insurance, why would they need your bank account information, if you decide to sign up with CIGNA? And what about the millions of people who go through life without a bank account?
    I would also point out that Medicare has been paying bills like this for years, and I am unaware of seniors having their bank accounts emptied by federal officials. Are you?
    There is no reason for the federal government to have your bank information, unless you choose to give it to them. Period. If you’re that obsessed with this, don’t give it to them. Go to 7-11, buy money orders and pay that way…

  10. I am not debating whether some vehicle for collecting premiums from individuals is advisable just whether the wording in this bill clearly addresses the issue of whether the charge to develop standards for electronic transfers includes individual bank accounts. Perhaps somewhere in this tome it states that permission to debit premiums must be given as you attest in much the same way I give permission to my electric utility, mortgage company, cell phone provider, etc. but I haven’t discovered that as yet. Such a statement would be advisable given the fact that even you admit that there are scenarios where directing debiting of an individual bank account would be necessary to assure timely payment. And, I still find the statement “provide for timely acknowledgement, response, and status reporting applicable to any electronic transaction deemed appropriate by the Secretary” disconcerting. Actually, I just chose at random an issue that others were posting about to determine, for myself, if the language of the bill is a big part of the problem in its interpretation-clearly that is the case. By the way, I haven’t seen any recent figures on the number of self-employed in this country but the so called “hidden economy” consisting among others, of people who make their living at flea markets, craft shows, etc. is fast growing so the self-insured segment may be much more significant than expected.

  11. Ok, no it wouldn’t; at least not without your permission. Even in the sections that you cite, it doesn’t say that.
    The section in question has to do with payments FROM the government TO health care providers. In fact, the government will be providing INSURANCE through your employer. Why would they EVER need to access your bank account, unless you expressly give them permission to debit premiums under certain circumstances.
    — Co-pays and deductible amounts go to the doctors and hospitals.
    — The government pays the balance to the doctors and hospitals.
    — The plan in place has employers offering cafeteria health insurance plans, and deducting your share of the premium amounts and submitting them directly to the government.
    Perhaps, IF you’re self-employed, you choose the public option, and you pay your own premiums, you could ask the government to directly debit your bank account. But otherwise, I can see no situation where that would be necessary. And since you’re asking them to do so, what’s the problem?

  12. Like a lot of Americans in the past few weeks I turned to the internet to do some research on the provisions of the health care bill. Simply typing in “national health care bill” provided a link to the bill itself and I started there. At over 1000 pages, it is doubtful if hardly anyone, including the folks in Washington who must vote on the bill has read it in its entirety. It is a complex issue and it requires a complex solution but the writing in this bill would fail everyone’s standard for clarity and conciseness. I have three college degrees and figure I am able, following careful study, to understand most prose whether it is legalistic, political, or merely designed to obfuscate. This piece of legislation may be the exception! In the best posts on the internet, the analysis was articulate, thoughtful, and free of conservative or liberal bias. There were precious few of these. In the middle were attempts by conservatives or liberals to interpret the bill based on their political leanings sprinkled with personal attacks on those with an opposing view. On the bottom rung were the people who resorted to hateful language and personal attacks because they had nothing constructive to add.
    I decided to attempt clarification of a single issue as a proxy for determining if this bill was understandable in its present form. Because so many people are upset by the increasing invasion of our lives by government, I sought to determine if this bill did provide for the government to have direct, real-time access to individual bank accounts for funds transfer. Some internet posts argue that it does, others argue that it does not. This post is not intended to address whether government access to individual bank accounts for this purpose is desirable or undesirable but whether the bill as written provides for such access. Most posts referenced p. 59 of the bill but it is necessary to begin on page 57.
    Under Sec. 1173A. Standardize Electronic Administrative Transactions (line 10. Page 57.)
    Line 14. Page 57. The Secretary shall adopt and regularly update standards consistent with the goals described in paragraph (2)
    Line 5, page 58, under paragraph (2)
    (D) enable the real-time (or near real-time) determination of an individual’s financial responsibility at the point of service and, to the extent possible, prior to service, including whether the individual is eligible for a specific service with a specific physician at a specific facility, which may include utilization of a machine-readable health plan beneficiary identification card;
    (E) enable, where feasible, near real-time adjudication of claims;
    (F) provide for timely acknowledgement, response, and status reporting applicable to any electronic transaction deemed appropriate by the Secretary;
    Some of the posts have concentrated on interpreting paragraph (C) under (4) REQUIREMENTS FOR SPECIFIC STANDARDS.—-The standards under this section shall be developed, adopted, and enforced so as to—
    (C) enable electronic funds transfers, in order to allow automated reconciliation with the related health care payment and remittance advice;
    To this reader, the bill clearly requires the Secretary to develop electronic funds transfer policies and procedures for the payment of health care providers. While the language of the bill does not clearly state that individual bank accounts would be accessed for funds transfers, paragraph (D) provides for the “determination of the financial responsibility of an individual at the point of service, . . .” I would then suggest that it is difficult to understand how “real-time adjudication of claims” in (E) and “reconciliation with the related health care payment and remittance advice” in (C) could be achieved in real time without individual account access if an individual co-payment or cost sharing was involved. Further, (F) clearly allows for the promulgation of standards which “provide for timely acknowledgement, response, and status reporting applicable to any electronic transaction deemed appropriate by the Secretary;
    The phrase “any electronic transaction deemed appropriate by the Secretary” opens the door much wider than some of the posts which argue otherwise.
    I would conclude, on this issue, that this bill would allow government to access individual bank account for the purpose of electronic funds transfers related to health care.

  13. 75% of tax money comes from 15% of people? that sounds pretty accurate to me
    the problem is, those very people pay a SMALLER percentage of their personal income than their employees! this includes the honest ones, who don’t skip out on taxes but just take advantage of deductions they are allowed. tax loopholes only make the problem worse, because they complicate matters altogether. i wonder how much more income the government would get if they closed said loopholes and made is so that “the rich” actually paid as much as “the poor”
    ps: you’ve got a seriously distorted view of america, as milt pointed out, if you think the american dream is “get rich”. thanks milt for bringing up “the most honored people in our society”. i *just* started teaching, and have no delusions that i’m getting rich, yet my profession has the single greatest hold on what the future holds for the world over any other. why? because our kids are that important. what compensation do we get for it? not a whole lot. heck, i’ve even heard people say we get paid too much. i’m not complaining about my salary, like i said i have no delusion of getting rich, but i wouldn’t object to some more recognition for what we do!
    (note: that is in no way a threat of “we have your children and will indoctrinate them to eliminate you!”…no good teacher would do that)

  14. He didn’t say that, by the way. What he said was, society would have to decide if they wanted to cover that. In fact, this woman you’re talking about actually disproves your entire argument, did you know that? Do you know who PAID for that woman’s pacemaker???
    Medicare. You know, government insurance.
    Now, for 50 points, what do you think the odds are that a private insurance company would EVER pay for a pacemaker for a 100 year old woman?
    You know the answer would be zero.
    Yes, you DO need to back up your assertion that government programs never come in under budget. Did you even read the article you’re commenting on? I cited specifics from the bill in response to bald-faced lies posed by the far right. I don’t ask anyone to “trust me.” I challenge them to go out and prove me wrong. You’re sitting here making assertions based on your word. Well, from what I can see, your word isn’t worth squat. You make assertions and expect us to believe it because you do.
    Why would ANY procedure deemed necessary by doctors and patients have to be denied? Who the hell are YOU to decide what’s necessary and what isn’t? That’s one of the problems with the goddamn health insurance companies; they play God, and get between doctors and patients and ration health care constantly. And yet YOU are trying to excuse them.
    Like I said… the 100 year old woman received a pacemaker thanks to MEDICARE. Got that? MEDICARE. If you can even ENVISION a private insurance company okaying such a procedure, then you need to go learn more about insurance companies.
    And stop acting offended. You’re offended by my use of words, but I’m not supposed to be offended by your side’s use of lies and innuendo? First you lie — twice — about things Obama supposedly said, and then you simply make statements like “government plans NEVER come in under budget” and offer no cites to support it. That’s offensive to me. Use your brain and provide facts, and I’ll take you seriously.
    I’ve gotten letters about how I should be more civil to these people. Screw that. I’ve been doing this for almost 20 years, and there is nothing civil about THEM. Just because they try to sound polite when they lie and defame others (I also note that they do so anonymously), doesn’t mean I can’t call them out as liars and gullible morons…
    Oops.. did I call him a moron again?
    The 100-year-old woman got the pacemaker from MEDICARE… MEDICARE!!!!!
    That’s a fact, genius. Now offer up a few of those and we can talk civilly…

  15. Another wingnut who’s offended by those who use their same tactics against them.
    You call Obama a liar for saying something that would be against his character, without any proof other than “you heard it.”
    You insinuated that the supporters of health care reform would be in favor of euthanising old people, which is an absolute lie. I mean, it’s a lie unless you can come up with proof of your assertion.
    You insinuated that people who are in favor of providing insurance for all people lack some sort of “personal responsibility” component to their life.
    You make lies and insinuations about everyone else, but when someone calls you a liar and an asshole, which you demonstrate yourself to be, you whine and cry about being “offended.” You call lying about everyone else “intelligent debate”? if you would like to debate this, then bring facts to the table. If you’d like to debate facts, I’ll do that all day. But if you want to bring pejoratives to the table, expect to have that dung flung right back at you here.
    I’m sorry for one thing, though… I’m sorry I only IMPLIED you were a moron.
    Btw… any CONSERVATIVE who would like to debate facts with me is welcome. But they’d better be facts. Nothing in this clown’s comment is fact.

  16. What do you want me to back up? In one of Obama’s town hall meetings he was asked about providing a pace-maker for a 100-year-old woman. I heard him say that it would not be covered under his proposed plan, and that it would probaly be better for that woman to be given some pain medication to keep her comfortable until she dies. The actual woman that was the subject of the conversation had that operation 5 years ago and has enjoyed life for the past 5 years because of it.
    I don’t think I need to back up my assertion that government plans never come in under or at budget. When the expenses outweigh the funds available there are only 2 options; increase the funds, or reduce the expenses. We can’t bear a higher tax burden – not even the rich (the definition of whom continues to be adjusted downward). So that leaves cutting expenses.
    Some difficult decisions would have to be made. Some procedures would have to be disallowed. It would not be prudent to spend $50,000 on somebody that has only 5 years left to live when that $50,000 could be spent on 10 younger people who need less expensive care and have more years left. So what is that magic age? Is it 80 or 90? I don’t know, but Obama said that age needs to be determined – I heard him say it. Then when the money runs short, does that age get lowered?
    When the entity paying the bill is not the one getting the service, the cost of the service goes up, and the quality of the service goes down. Add that concept to the gross inefficiency of the government and you have a sad outlook for this kind of socialized medicine.
    Graham, If you have a specific question about my thoughts, I’m happy to offer an intellegent, educated and non-offensive answer.
    See, Milt, that’s how you can write a reply without having a potty-mouth.

  17. I’m sorry you are unable to have an intellegent exchange without getting offensive. I didn’t call Obama a “p____y”. Why throw that in? In your sad reply you called me a simp, a selfish jackass, a wingnut and, indirectly, a moron. Then you refer to yourself as intellegent. To loosely quote a very wise man, “You acted stupidly.” Write me back when you outgrow your name-calling phase and we’ll talk. Most of us outgrow that stage by age 12 or 13. Good luck on your journey.

  18. A shouted slogan, an ancient quote, and a paragraph beginning with an ad hominem and ending with a peurile 5th grade insult…you really are a waste of internet bandwidth aren’t you?

  19. I don’t believe your lying keyboard, so I would suggest you offer proof.
    Has anyone noticed that during the election campaign, Obama was too big of a pussy to be president, but all of a sudden, now that he’s taken office, he’s put in place a master plan to get rid of all old people and all opposition?
    But let’s look at some of this clown’s other bullshit. “Older people cost more than their fair share to keep alive”??? Please, oh wise one; how much would be “their fair share,” especially given that their tax money built the country? As for “logical alternatives,” the only alternative is to allow everyone to pay for insurance.
    And as for your side whining about “personal responsibility,” when are you going to admit, you selfish jackass, that our parents and grandparents BUILT this country, and we owe it to them to offer EVERYONE the freedom to continue building it. The term “personal responsibility” is meaningless when it comes from a wingnut, because it’s really meant as code for “I’ve got mine; you get yours,” and this country doesn’t work like that.
    Do you even know what health insurance is, you simp? It’s getting everyone else to pay for health care that you yourself can’t afford. In other words, how would you like it if we just banned health insurance altogether, and made you take “personal responsibility” when some “illegal alien” sneezes on you and gives you the plague?
    (To the wingnuts reading this, the above was sarcasm. It’s used by intelligent people to tell morons to take a hike.)

  20. I heard Obama’s actual lying lips say that there would be a set age after which life-extending care would not be offered. He added that those people would be given pain killers and sent home to die in comfort. Not one of his, or any other government plan has ever operated within budget. Obviously a statistical analysis would reveal that older people cost more than their fair share to keep alive. As actual costs blow past the budget, the only logical alternatives are to raise taxes or lower the cut-off age and let people die younger. OBAMA is the scariest man on earth because he really believes this is the way to order a society. I am amazed at the ignorant sheep that buy into his garbage because they want “change”. Bring back personal responsibilty and keep the government out of health care, banking, loans, manufacturing and private life! They don’t do ANYTHING well. Don’t give them the power of life and death!

  21. Thanks for posting this! Took me forever to find the actual bill and compare it to what this nut was saying, only to discover that you had already done that! Kudos.

  22. Thanks so much for taking this on–I’m going to forward this link widely. Like the easy term “wingnuts” for referring to these idiots. Unfortunately I live in what could be called the hub of all things RED and constantly run into these ignos (like mfizzle) everyday. Kind of cracks me up when I see one of them driving an old beat up pickup truck out of a dumpy trailer park and they are displaying McCain (along with their faded “W”) bumper stickers all over their truck. Really pathetic!
    Thanks again.

  23. Thanks Milt… FYI The following is not very scientific, but I believe it to be the truth. My parents were from large families and born and raised in Candada, they imigrated to U.S. where I was born and am a citizen…. but… I have zillioin first cousins in Canada and Denmark. Most of them are in 40’s 50’s and have children. All of them are middle class, work hard and play by the rules and I can tell you that they have complaints about their H.C. system, but they think ours is idiotic. Nothing would make them trade places.

  24. Thanks for the debunking!
    And for the record, to whatever winger mentioned our republic…
    We are a Constitutionaly-limited representative democratic republic.
    And the right wing lies will not work. I’m sharing the link, thanks.

  25. I want to add my thanks to your hard work. I’ve read the bill and followed the mark up and hearings, so when the crap started flying around the internet and being talked about at work, I had to jump in and try and explain what really is in the bill and what isn’t. I’m warning you, I’m going to be using your site in this battle because it’s just so dam good. Thanks so much.

  26. It’s laughable that mfrizzle would say that the right is intellectually superior, then spew such moronic crap. What an “f”ing idiot. These wing nuts are nothing but puppets. They don’t even realize how ignorant they are. It’s really sad. George W. Bush was the worst president this country has had in at least 70 years. He was a total disgrace to America. Obama has the potential to be a great president. If the right wing nuts gave a rat’s ass about America, they would give Obama a chance. But they don’t care at all about America. They are too blind and uninformed to understand what they are doing.

  27. Milt,
    Thanks so much for doing this (and yes I have read the bill also-it is a bit of a slog, but now I can say I really read it.) I think its worth pointing out that small businesses create a huge number of jobs in this country, very few small business owners are rich. Meaningful health care reform with a strong public option would be a huge benefit to them. A single payer plan that would get employers entirely out of the burden of providing health care would be an even greater benefit to ALL businesses. Do these anti-reform ranters not understand that the rest of the industrialized world pays less than half of what we pay (that includes what they pay in taxes, not just out of pocket) and they insure EVERYONE? I have lived in Italy and England, and used those health care systems and would take either one over ours. I have known dozens of Canadians, Swedes, Italians, British, Germans, South Americans, etc. most of who lived in this country and experienced our corporate driven health care, for which they paid very high fees out of pocket by the way, and not ONE of them EVER thought they would have chosen our health care system over their own. Going back to the 1980s, every person I know who has had real experience with another developed country’s health care system has thought ours was insanely dysfunctional, inefficient and expensive, and that includes my very conservative British History prof, who lived in Britain for a number of years and used the British National Health system extensively. He would joke that that was socialism he could believe in!

  28. The American Dream is NOT “to get rich,” and that you think it is just proves the moral depravity of your side of the argument.
    The American Dream is to be able to live a life of freedom, and to live well doing what you love. For Chrissakes, genius; you think the most honored people in our society — police, firefighters, teachers, etc., have as their guiding principle “to get rich.”?? My son is in the Army and will soon be deployed to Afghanistan. You think he did it to get rich? You think the officers in the military get rich? The guy who repaired my computer yesterday has a small business; he’s not under any delusion that he’ll be rich; he makes a good living and he’s happy. That’s the American Dream.
    It fascinates me that people who are poor and pay little or no taxes, have such a strong opinion with regard to what everyone else chooses to do with tax money. The rich are screwing you, and people like you just keep bending over and asking for more. (Ironically, at the same time, you’re fighting equal rights for gays; no irony there.)
    And let me tell you a little secret, my little wingnut friend. The odds of you getting rich by yourself are slim to none. You’ll have to start your own business, and you’ll need to hire the best talent. But here’s the dilemma; you won’t be able to hire the best talent unless you pay them more money than your competition, AND you pay for most of their health insurance. The average premium is over $15,000 per year right now, and without this reform measure, the CBO estimates that the average will be $30,000 per year by 2016. Not only that, but every other country you’ll be competing with doesn’t pay nearly as much for health care taxes, as our businesses pay in health care premiums.
    That’s a lot of your potential wealth going down the drain. Without this bill, you can’t afford to become rich. I mean, unless you keep buying those Powerball tickets for the next million years or so.

  29. Yep. The Freepers have discovered us. Yay.
    Let’s take this moron point by point. I’ll leave out the one on top of his head.
    1. I don’t know if it’s the same guy, but I have seen a guy with the “Fuck the poor” sign. He’s at almost every protest in front of the White House. I used to have a picture of the guy; he actually posed proudly when I took his picture. I’ll see if I can dig it out. You should also see my post on the teabagger’s “protest” in DC… it was quite the comical affair.
    2. I am neither “poor,” in relative terms, nor am I posing as an “expert” on the health care bill. I compared the “facts” posted about the bill by a right wing blogger, and simply proved (yes, PROVED!) that they weren’t facts at all.
    3. Adding a period to a sentence where it doesn’t belong, and implying that it’s the end of a sentence when it’s not is DISHONEST. What if I wrote a review of a movie, and said “One of the greatest wastes of film ever created” and someone used that quote in the ad for the film, and edited it to say, “The greatest… film ever created.”?? That’s what’s being done here. It’s a lie. The tax is only not being treated as a tax for ONE PURPOSE, stated in the bill.
    4. I am not a clown, but you seem to have missed a spot of greasepaint when you washed up after work last night. The section in question CLEARLY refers to the insurance system paying doctors efficiently. And there is nothing in there REQUIRING anyone to participate. Therefore, the claim, “The federal government will have direct, real-time access to all individual bank accounts for electronic funds transfer.” is a LIE, and proven so. As for all of this being scary, well, you must not have health insurance, because almost all health insurance premiums are paid by electronic debit. And honestly, direct deposit of a paycheck is one of the greatest things to ever come along. And it has become so common, a lot of workplaces no longer issue checks; instead, if you don’t have a bank account to deposit your pay into, they give you a debit card, and apply your pay to that. Welcome to the dawn of a cashless world, Freeper.
    Now, if you believe I think I have all of the facts, then you misunderstood the purpose of this exercise. I am not claiming expertise on the health care bill. I merely took the language they SAID was in the bill, and proved, using basic reading comprehension and an ability to cut and paste, that it was NOT in the bill. Now, if you have proof that this stuff IS in the bill, then prove me wrong. Otherwise, you just look like… oh, I don’t know… a clown?

  30. I believe, if you could actually get your head around the true tax facts, that some 15%of the people, pay some 75% OF THE TAX in this country.
    and that 5% pay about 50% of the income tax.
    OK, your turn, if only the richest got tax breaks, as YOU state as fact, then these numbers cant possibly exist. Yet, the numbers DO in fact, FACT exist, are not made up, but are completely verifiable and NEVER denied by a single Democrat, Republican, or Independent.
    The “Rich” are the ones who HIRE people LIKE you patak, you never ever got ONE single job, from a poor person. Fact….
    The “Rich” are the ones who re-invest in their company, purchasing new equipment, building new facilities, paying more wages as they hire more people to run their business.
    Rich are in it only for themselves.
    OK,,,,,, my retort is,,, “So what?”. The American Dream, has been, for over 200 yrs, to get rich. Now, it is a 4 letter word. Yet, not ONE time, has any liberal, taken aim at Hollywierd(wood) where actors get $20,000,000 per picture, and even cheap actors make upwards of $1,000,000 per picture. These actors dont hire anyone, except home lawn care illegals. They dont re-invest in the U.S., and in fact spend a large portion of their American income, anywhere but here.
    They produce nothing that the entire planet can not do without. Yet THEIR opinions, are looked upon as Sacrosanct, unassailable, and word one on matters of economy, ecology, world policy, U.N. mandates, etc.
    Hard to imagine actors being such incredible experts, when they spend months squirreled away with little contact or concern for the rest of the world, until a crony calls and says they need $25,000 a plate for an election lunch. Gotta love that.
    I have never understood, except that it usually come from the NON POOR LEFT, the constant attack on the ” Rich”. The “rich” are what drives this country, and the drive to become rich is why we HAVE this country as it is today, a world leader.
    If there were no rich, there would be no ambition, no invention, no risk taking, no entrepreneurs, not much of ANYTHING of the U.S. of A. would be recognizable, without the rich……
    I hope to one day BE rich, until then, I will work to take care of my own needs, WITHOUT the damn Obamacare government trying to take away every single solitary individualistic right I have in being simply FREE TO CHOOSE.
    and that is choose anything in regards to myself, my family, my business. I will not accept a Government that works directly against the Citizens it is sworn to protect, while lying at every turn, insisting ” its for your own good” while becoming literally the “Big Brother” we have ALWAYS feared.

  31. I not think it is possible you saw a ” F**K the poor” sign at a “teabagger” event. probably someone like yourself brought the sign, as left whackjobs have done over and over in order to deliberately stir up the race card at Obama candidate events.
    Being as I pretty much qualify as ” the poor”, there is no way in hell, after reading over the gibberish offered up by the so called expert on the health care bill, that i will ever support ANY politician who sends this to a vote.
    I have read this and the rebuttal TO this “field piece”. This mess of a so called “cut the crap”, is, basically, full of crap, here are some examples of the crap REALLY being cut..
    1}.• Page 203: “The tax imposed under this section shall not be treated as tax.” Yes, it really says that.
    The author then complains about the period after tax and pastes in the full text which indeed says exactly what was claimed. True it had no period but the meaning is clear that any of the penalty taxes imposed can’t be used in tax deductions and hence means exactly what it would with the period. I mean the author says he doesn’t even understand the legalese while lambasting the original author for changing the meaning he didn’t get in the first place. Great argument.
    2}..• Page 59: The federal government will have direct, real-time access to all individual bank accounts for electronic funds transfer.
    Again the clown displays his ignorance. He quotes the text of the bill “(C) enable electronic funds transfers, in order to allow automated reconciliation with the related health care payment and remittance advice;”. He then says that clearly means only electronic transfer between doctor and government plan. First off, that alone is scary to anyone practicing medicine as a doctor and should be scary to a nurse who makes their livelihood assisting the same. Those penalties for readmissions, etc? Removed directly from your bank at the gov’t choosing. Kiss those sky high nurse wages goodbye on this plan. Ncdonna, I would just like to point out that a doctor at a typical practice making just medicare fees would make at BEST the same as the top 10% RN today. Not quite a fair deal and if the doctor’s wages drop, so will the nurses. But onto the technical here. When one receives remittance advice it has what amount was claimed, what amount was covered and then what is left for the patient to pay. The reconciliation of said advice consists of making that balance zero including BILLING THE PATIENT. So automated reconciliation would include deduction of premiums and copays electronically from YOUR bank account, not the doctors. Unless you believe this is free or something and you won’t owe premiums or a copay at all. If you believe that, I have a bridge to sell you.
    Go on, believe that you have all the facts, that people like S. Hannity are against the poor, the down trodden, the homeless.
    What people like Hannity are against, is stupidity, the blind leading the blindfolded, and idiots who spout off pure bs such as yours and this, as Gospel.
    You neither have the education or the actual perseverance to uncover the FACTS. You spout PC rhetoric as if it was handed down from God (Obama ).
    And the rest of us poor schleps need to just shut up and take it.
    Sorry, no thanks, not now, not ever.

  32. In Hannity’s Amerika they seem to forget to check the facts they are disparaging, we already have rationed care and people are waiting in long lines to see a doctor. It’s sad to see how they are stirring up a base who will need health care and will end up with the status quo if they get their way. Seems the Lewin Group is all the advise they need to source their desire to kill health care reform. In case you didn’t know, the Lewin group is better know as UnitedHealthCare. The status quo is killing innocent people or causing them to loose their homes and lives to keep the politicians and profit machines filthy pockets full. If you live in Tennessee or Virginia, this is what is deemed, defended and supported as the acceptable standards of health care. It’s all about greed.
    Where are the elected reps who campaigned with Obama and health care reform ? While the tea baggers are hollering the government is going to kill granny and all their ilk our congressman, senators and governors are silent and are well aware of the status quo.
    It’s frustrating !

  33. We gave the tax breaks to the richest people, we gave corporations huge loopholes to avoid paying corporate taxes, all so they could create jobs, jobs, jobs. That’s how it is supposed to work right?
    But we all know it didn’t. They took their tax cuts and sent our jobs and the money off shore. It’s time to have them pay their share of the taxes so we can again be the land of the free, for liberty and justice for all, so we all can all have life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, not so they can take all the wealth out of our country that was produced by the hardworking citizens and leave us to die in poverty like slaves.

  34. Milt, 1st of all…nice job on your article. The mis-information put out, often by both sides, should be considered criminal. In fact, I would like to see all politicians bound by a “Truth In Advertising” law. If they cannot acurately represent a bill or concept being debated they should be required to step back. Anything less is commiting a fraud on the people they claim to represent. That won’t stop the mfizzles of the world. But it would go a long way toward fostering honest debates.
    On another topic, mfizzle is nothing more than a rabid dog. And like a rabid dog his diseased mind will get the better of him…if it hasn’t already. Don’t waste your time with him.

  35. Hey Milt,
    If the intent of the bill is to provide “access to a ll” and “unlimited care” then the bill will fail due to rationing. Here’s how rationing is created. Clearly, the bill will increase demand on health care services by providing unlimted access to preventative care with no deductible/co-pay/or coinsurance (provided under the essential plan which will be the minimum standard for any plan in the exchange and the public plan.) Secondly, the bill will decrease supply. The bill will decrease supply of services because reimbursement rates will be pegged to Medicare tables which are widely known to reimburse below actual costs. As physicians are financially squeezed as they are under the Medicare/Medicaid system today, fewer bright people will enter the profession and increased numbers of experienced health providers will prematurely exit the system. No argument there, right? Any economist (left-wing, rightwing, or indifferent) will explain that you cannot increase demand and decrease supply without some artificial means of distribution. In this case, it’s 26 government appointees of which only 1 is required to be an actual physician. These 26 government bureaucrats will determine all standards of care, and control all distribution of health care services. Incidentally, this is far different than the private system. The private system determines benefits but not based on capacity. The private system determines benefits based on need. While it may take time for eperimental practices to be accepted by insurance companies, there are multiple outlets to effect change in the private system including competition, mediation/arbitration, appeals processes, and lawsuits. HR3200 provides for one outlet of appeal, the slow and cumbersome and inconvenient and expensive federal court system. The private system is incented to move health care decisions quickly to keep an individual’s costs down. The public system is not.
    Finally, shouldn’t any modern health plan motivate indivduals to choose healthy lifestyle decisions and consequently remain healthy, keeping costs down? This bill prohibits any plan in the exchange from using tobacco use, alcohol use, drug use, BMI, exercise regimen, diet, safety belt use, helmet use, etc in their rating plan. As a consequence, the bill causes people who make bad decisions to be subsidized by people who make good decisions. Perversely, the bill rewards bad behavior that will further drive health care costs up.
    All of these facts come directly from the bill.
    But we agree the system needs fixing.
    Here’s the best solution that I have found to date. I’d be curious what you think, since you’ve done so much analysis on HR3200.

  36. at the teabagger “event” i went to, i actually saw a sign that said “F**K THE POOR”
    they arrived on public transit and it was held in a public park…
    but on the health care issue, i have personally been a victim of big insurance…the denial of services over the years cost me my health to the point of now being fully disabled…depending on medicare to SURVIVE.
    blue cross/blue shield, united healthcare (the lewin group), and cigna…thanks for the rationing and the “advisory boards” and now the collection agencies due to the bills you never paid….
    medicare has improved my life, i pay a premium (it’s not free), i still pay my 20% on top of that…it’s not socialism, it’s an alternative because i cannot work…
    simple, effective, life-sustaining…it’s not politics that stops this reform from happening, it’s GREED.

  37. You’re welcome. There’s more coming, too. The demonization of this bill has only begun. They’re going to have a little over a month to trash the hell out of it, and I plan to meet them head on. This is too important to our country now. If anyone, including Blue Dog Democrats, thinks they can derail this thing and survive, they’re wrong. And we have to make that clear to them.

  38. Gee, Frizzle, is this all you have?
    This article is not meant to be “scholarly.” The whole point is that you wingnuts are liars. And you continue with it with this response.
    First of all, my only source is the bill itself, which I reference in detail. The point is, almost all of the things this article says are in the bill are NOT in the bill. I used the only source that matters; the bill. I included a link at the beginning, and encouraged everyone reading this to follow along. I’m sorry; were you having a difficult time following along? The page numbers were included, and when the wrong page number was given, I corrected it.
    No, you’d rather continue the lie.
    The government does NOT mandate what is covered in the private market, you lying moron. If that was the case, private insurance companies wouldn’t be able to routinely deny claims for anything over a certain amount, as they do these days. And don’t tell me they don’t; we’ve all seen it.
    And do you want to know the real reason premiums go up so high? I’ll tell you why, and you can look this up, too. It’s because insurance companies make money by refusing to cover certain people and refusing to pay for procedures. Insurance companies refuse to sell policies to anyone with a condition that makes it more likely than normal that they will need health care. Then, when they need health care, they end up needing much more expensive catastrophic care, that they cannot pay for. People without insurance can’t pay for health care these days; it is that simple. There are just billions of dollars in health care bills that will never be paid every year, and medical corporations, hospitals and doctors have to make up the shortfall, so they do so by raising prices on procedures. Health insurance companies love this situation, however, because for every dollar the medical delivery people raise prices, they raise premiums $1.30. That’s why health insurance premiums have doubled in the last ten years. And it’s why they are likely to double in the next ten years, according to CBO estimates.
    Covering everyone will actually cost less in the long run. Everyone with insurance will see premiums stabilize, because all of the bills will be paid, for a change. Not only that, but no one will be forced to DIE because they don’t have enough money for care. And no family will have to lose everything they worked for their entire life just because they contract an illness.
    What you are actually in favor of, my little wingnut, is doubling the average health insurance premium to more than $30,000 per year. What you are actually in favor of, is saddling large and small businesses with a financial burden that makes them uncompetitive with the rest of the world. What you are actually in favor of is a system in which people DIE because they don’t have enough money to treat an illness or injury. What you are actually in favor of is a system in which you can work hard all your life and live the American Dream, and have it taken away because you contract an illness from someone else, but don’t have the money to pay for it. What you are actually in favor of is a system by which someone with an illness goes untreated, because he can’t afford to see a doctor, and ends up infecting dozens of others, who infect dozens of others, and so on, thus costing the system a ton of money, as well.
    And here’s a clue, genius. Private insurance companies already ration care. People close to me have been routinely denied care by their private insurance company. Insurance companies routinely refuse doctors, which causes doctors to have to sometimes lie to insurance companies about treatment in order to get paid.
    Nothing in any of your comments has any truth to it whatsoever, which means you are as irony deficient as pretty much everyone on the right. Do you NOT think private insurance companies do NOT have “advisory committees,” that decide on what and who they’ll cover, without your input? And did you bother to read the bill I provided for you and referenced repeatedly throughout the long article? The health care reform bill does the OPPOSITE of create a monopoly; it requires that all workplaces offer a slate of available insurance policies, including a public option alongside several private ones. Says so right in the bill. Not only that, but private insurance companies will be required to offer several plan tiers, with different levels of coverage, just like the public option. Compare that with what most workers in the marketplace have now, in which one company gets a workplace to sign a contract, and lock out all other companies, and the worker has one choice, period. “Open enrollment” usually means two choices’ opt-in to what we’re providing, or opt out. That’s not a choice.
    And may I say, I left your three posts up, because they demonstrate you to be demonstrably NOT “intellectually superior” to anyone. Hell; you don’t even understand what you claim you just read, and it’s obvious.
    And don’t look now, but you’re doing a lot more “name calling,” “barking at the moon,” and you might get someone to wipe that foam from around your mouth.
    Nothing like an irony deficient right winger, is there?

    “The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants.”
    — Thomas Jefferson
    Not that any of you commies would actually care about the founding fathers, or the constitution, or the declaration of independence, or the bill of rights (the entire bill of rights, not what you choose and pick you liberal rat pieces of dung).

  40. I forgot my audience again…I apologize. Your solution to everything is to tax the rich, Bush lied and people died, and blaming the vast right-wing conspiracy in this country.
    How about Obama lied and the economy died! I can’t believe you clowns buy that saved or created jobs crap…where are the jobs? Unemployment is still rising your morons! The national debt has been increased substantially (that means alot you retarded bastards)and he has not come through on any of his promises to you. Where are all the people who were saying that he was going to pay their car notes, and buy their groceries, and pay off their home lones…admit know you were one of them.
    You statist bastards are always looking for someone else to pay for stuff that you should be providing for yourself. You all are the true fascists. You will lose. Trust me. Universal health care is doomed, your president’s political capital is waning ( that means going down you rat pinko F**ks), your congress is hated by the majority of the country and 2010 will bring changes. I promise. As the pendelum swings hard one way…well you know the rest little hitlers. Maybe not you pieces of dog crap. Little yellow bus riding mental midgets.

  41. Are you kidding me with this unscholarly “deconstruction” of the “facts”? This guy needs a lesson in how to properly deconstruct anything…it’s called sources, references, and oh yeah…the TRUTH.
    Let’s see…
    The government mandates what is covered in the private market (does so now which is why your insurance premiums really go up), I forgot my audience… let me deconstruct that for you:
    government mandates types of covered services + which end up increasing the expenses for insurance pool = insurance company increasing premiums on everyone to pay for the increased costs and to….MAKE A PROFIT! That is such a dirty word…you sorry sack of statists.
    Since most small businesses and mid-size businesses will not be able to afford the types of plans that the government will REQUIRE from the private market, they will be FORCED to takethe public plan or pay a tax as punishment and an incentive to enroll their employees. That’s called a monopoly in my book. Only large corporations will be able to afford those types of premiums….score another one for Obama and big corporations.
    They will RATION your care. What the hell do you thing an “advisory committee” on health benefits actually is? Do you want some clown in D.C. who knows nothing or cares nothing about you and your personal medical situation to make decisions for you and your family? You are all a bunch of dopes. Keep drinking that hope and change kool-aid you little fascist bastards. Lenin was right about you guys…you are the useful idiots that he talked about.
    We will defeat you morons. We are intellectually superior to you and aside from your name-calling and your barking at the moon and foaming at the mouth…you cannot come up with one good argument to explain how we are going to continue to afford this welfare society. See the movie IOUSA for further reference. We will fight you idiots to the end of time, that is of course if you weak libs could actually fight.
    Long live our REPUBLIC, not democracy you morons. We have a Constitutional Republic. Do any of you know what that means? I doubt it.

  42. Thank you so much for doing this. I was in the process of creating a similar response and got frustrated about 2/3 of the way through with the wingnut buzzwords and non-stop prevarication. ACORN, illegals and rationing are all the apparent bogeymen of the undereducated, non-reading crowd. These people can turn anything into an evil plot to change their “‘merican” way of life.
    Thanks again!

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