Unsustainable Change. Don’t Buy It

It’s about time someone told this guy to take a hike.

Dozens of TEA Party organizations have denounced his candidacy as a fraud. He is not associated with any of those organizations in the state of Nevada, yet he is running as the “tea party candidate”.

My only guess is he’s into sipping tea from dainty little cups. If not, then he’s nothing more than a big fat liar.

Speaking of liars, did you know that the new health care bill will cost businesses billions of dollars in additional health care costs and result in the layoffs of more and more people as their employers become aware of the costs they will incur.

While 40 different states have some sort of legislation in the works to overturn ObamaCare, some people are still trying to convince us that the health care bill was passed for “good reasons”.

The mandate’s defenders say Congress is exercising its power to “regulate commerce…among the several states.” Yet a law that compels people to engage in an intrastate transaction plainly does not fit within the original understanding of the Commerce Clause, which was aimed at facilitating the interstate exchange of goods by removing internal trade barriers.

Of course, not everyone is drinking the kool-aid. In fact, roughly 70% of the American people are refusing to drink the kool-aid.

Yet this is the logic of the health insurance mandate, an unprecedented attempt to punish people for the offense of living in the United States without buying something the federal government thinks they should have. Don’t buy it.

Then again, if you are one of the 30% or so that is happy with the health-care bill, take a moment to bask in the knowledge that you are one with Fidel Castro.

We consider health reform to have been an important battle and a success of his (Obama’s) government…

But even Fidel Castro doesn’t get it.

Cuba provides free health care and education to all its citizens, and heavily subsidizes food, housing, utilities and transportation, policies that have earned it global praise. The government has warned that some of those benefits are no longer sustainable given Cuba’s ever-struggling economy, though it has so far not made major changes.

In recent speeches, Raul Castro has singled out medicine as an area where the government needs to be spending less, but he has not elaborated.

Universal health care. Unsustainable costs. Imagine that. You wanted change, America. You got it.

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Forced Health-Care Is Unconstitutional

The passage of the health-care bill signaled a change in our country. No longer are we the free people we were just a couple days ago.

Under this new plan you will be forced to carry health insurance or face a fine. You will be required to pay specific amounts for that health care. The amount you pay will be determined by the IRS based on your income. If you don’t purchase a government approved health-care plan, you will be fined and/or go to jail.

Never before in our country’s history have the American people been forced to purchase any product, be it food, clothing, insurance, or otherwise. Some people are using the “you are required to purchase auto insurance aren’t you” argument, but that doesn’t fly. Laws concerning auto insurance are state laws, not federal laws. Under the 10th Amendment to the Constitution, the federal government does not possess the authority to do this.

The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.

Health-care for everyone may sound good, but forced health-care insurance is unconstitutional at the very basic level in the Bill Of Rights.

There are a lot more issues with ObamaCare than the unconstitutionality of it, and I’ll discuss some of those over the coming week or so. For today, here are some more links about the bill.

It didn’t even get out of the gate and ObamaCare is doomed.

The ink isn’t even dry and attorneys general across the nation have filed suit against the bill.

Tomorrow is another day, and I am sure there will be 1,000 more reasons why ObamaCare will never be enacted.

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The Assault On Our Constitution

Well, there you have it. 219 Democrats have made an all-out assault on our Constitution. As you know by now, the health-care bill has passed.

Since most of you still don’t know exactly what’s in the bill, why not review these 20 ways that ObamaCare will take away our freedoms. These are so important I am quoting the entire list here.

1. You are young and don’t want health insurance? You are starting up a small business and need to minimize expenses, and one way to do that is to forego health insurance? Tough. You have to pay $750 annually for the “privilege.” (Section 1501)

2. You are young and healthy and want to pay for insurance that reflects that status? Tough. You’ll have to pay for premiums that cover not only you, but also the guy who smokes three packs a day, drink a gallon of whiskey and eats chicken fat off the floor. That’s because insurance companies will no longer be able to underwrite on the basis of a person’s health status. (Section 2701).

3. You would like to pay less in premiums by buying insurance with lifetime or annual limits on coverage? Tough. Health insurers will no longer be able to offer such policies, even if that is what customers prefer. (Section 2711).

4. Think you’d like a policy that is cheaper because it doesn’t cover preventive care or requires cost-sharing for such care? Tough. Health insurers will no longer be able to offer policies that do not cover preventive services or offer them with cost-sharing, even if that’s what the customer wants. (Section 2712).

5. You are an employer and you would like to offer coverage that doesn’t allow your employees’ slacker children to stay on the policy until age 26? Tough. (Section 2714).

6. You must buy a policy that covers ambulatory patient services, emergency services, hospitalization, maternity and newborn care, mental health and substance use disorder services, including behavioral health treatment; prescription drugs; rehabilitative and habilitative services and devices; laboratory services; preventive and wellness services; chronic disease management; and pediatric services, including oral and vision care.

You’re a single guy without children? Tough, your policy must cover pediatric services. You’re a woman who can’t have children? Tough, your policy must cover maternity services. You’re a teetotaler? Tough, your policy must cover substance abuse treatment. (Add your own violation of personal freedom here.) (Section 1302).

7. Do you want a plan with lots of cost-sharing and low premiums? Well, the best you can do is a “Bronze plan,” which has benefits that provide benefits that are actuarially equivalent to 60% of the full actuarial value of the benefits provided under the plan. Anything lower than that, tough. (Section 1302 (d) (1) (A))

8. You are an employer in the small-group insurance market and you’d like to offer policies with deductibles higher than $2,000 for individuals and $4,000 for families? Tough. (Section 1302 (c) (2) (A).

9. If you are a large employer (defined as at least 50 employees) and you do not want to provide health insurance to your employee, then you will pay a $750 fine per employee (It could be $2,000 to $3,000 under the reconciliation changes). Think you know how to better spend that money? Tough. (Section 1513).

10. You are an employer who offers health flexible spending arrangements and your employees want to deduct more than $2,500 from their salaries for it? Sorry, can’t do that. (Section 9005 (i)).

11. If you are a physician and you don’t want the government looking over your shoulder? Tough. The Secretary of Health and Human Services is authorized to use your claims data to issue you reports that measure the resources you use, provide information on the quality of care you provide, and compare the resources you use to those used by other physicians. Of course, this will all be just for informational purposes. It’s not like the government will ever use it to intervene in your practice and patients’ care. Of course not. (Section 3003 (i))

12. If you are a physician and you want to own your own hospital, you must be an owner and have a “Medicare provider agreement” by Feb. 1, 2010. (Dec. 31, 2010 in the reconciliation changes.) If you didn’t have those by then, you are out of luck. (Section 6001 (i) (1) (A))

13. If you are a physician owner and you want to expand your hospital? Well, you can’t (Section 6001 (i) (1) (B). Unless, it is located in a county where, over the last five years, population growth has been 150% of what it has been in the state (Section 6601 (i) (3) ( E)). And then you cannot increase your capacity by more than 200% (Section 6001 (i) (3) (C)).

14. You are a health insurer and you want to raise premiums to meet costs? Well, if that increase is deemed “unreasonable” by the Secretary of Health and Human Services it will be subject to review and can be denied. (Section 1003)

15. The government will extract a fee of $2.3 billion annually from the pharmaceutical industry. If you are a pharmaceutical company what you will pay depends on the ratio of the number of brand-name drugs you sell to the total number of brand-name drugs sold in the U.S. So, if you sell 10% of the brand-name drugs in the U.S., what you pay will be 10% multiplied by $2.3 billion, or $230,000,000. (Under reconciliation, it starts at $2.55 billion, jumps to $3 billion in 2012, then to $3.5 billion in 2017 and $4.2 billion in 2018, before settling at $2.8 billion in 2019 (Section 1404)). Think you, as a pharmaceutical executive, know how to better use that money, say for research and development? Tough. (Section 9008 (b)).

16. The government will extract a fee of $2 billion annually from medical device makers. If you are a medical device maker what you will pay depends on your share of medical device sales in the U.S. So, if you sell 10% of the medical devices in the U.S., what you pay will be 10% multiplied by $2 billion, or $200,000,000. Think you, as a medical device maker, know how to better use that money, say for R&D? Tough. (Section 9009 (b)).

The reconciliation package turns that into a 2.9% excise tax for medical device makers. Think you, as a medical device maker, know how to better use that money, say for research and development? Tough. (Section 1405).

17. The government will extract a fee of $6.7 billion annually from insurance companies. If you are an insurer, what you will pay depends on your share of net premiums plus 200% of your administrative costs. So, if your net premiums and administrative costs are equal to 10% of the total, you will pay 10% of $6.7 billion, or $670,000,000. In the reconciliation bill, the fee will start at $8 billion in 2014, $11.3 billion in 2015, $1.9 billion in 2017, and $14.3 billion in 2018 (Section 1406).Think you, as an insurance executive, know how to better spend that money? Tough.(Section 9010 (b) (1) (A and B).)

18. If an insurance company board or its stockholders think the CEO is worth more than $500,000 in deferred compensation? Tough.(Section 9014).

19. You will have to pay an additional 0.5% payroll tax on any dollar you make over $250,000 if you file a joint return and $200,000 if you file an individual return. What? You think you know how to spend the money you earned better than the government? Tough. (Section 9015).
That amount will rise to a 3.8% tax if reconciliation passes. It will also apply to investment income, estates, and trusts. You think you know how to spend the money you earned better than the government? Like you need to ask. (Section 1402).

20. If you go for cosmetic surgery, you will pay an additional 5% tax on the cost of the procedure. Think you know how to spend that money you earned better than the government? Tough. (Section 9017).

I am sick to my stomach thinking of everything that will transpire because of the passing of this bill.

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Law Trumps Order Everytime

There’s word today that there may be an “Executive Order” being offered in an exchange for votes on the House bill.

The possible deal would focus on an executive order that would specify there would be no public funding for abortions in the healthcare bill.

Apparently, in an effort to persuade lawmakers to support this bill, the President of the United States is offering this executive order which will have no affect on the healthcare bill. An executive order cannot override or negate an existing law.

Abortion is legal and the health care bill, as written in the Senate version, will allow funding for abortions. If the House passes the bill today, it will become law with the President’s signature. The President of the United States cannot issue any executive order which overrides that current law.

No deal, with Rep. Bart Stupak (D-MI) or anyone else, is worth the paper it is written on, if it includes an Executive Order.

On a side note, the President can reverse or alter any executive order by simply signing another executive order. There is no guarantee that the President will not do that.

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Wheeling And Dealing In Washington

While Barack Obama and Nancy Pelosi wheeled and dealed for health care votes today, we spent the afternoon at the 6th annual Rednation Pow-Wow.

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We spent our afternoon with friends and fellow camera club members, while Nancy Pelosi kept spinning her web in Washington, D.C. How confident are you with this health care bill? Remember now, Nancy Pelosi has been wheeling and dealing, offering political bribes for votes. She’ll do anything she can to get this bill passed. I wouldn’t be surprised if she has sold the souls of her grandchildren to the devil to ensure the bill’s passage.

For the past week we’ve heard, and I’ve wirtten about, the “deem and pass” proposal. This was also known as the Slaughter “rule” or the Slaughter solution. The proposed rule is unconstitutional by any interpretation of the law and today House leadership announced they will be abandoning the “deem and pass” rule.

The House appears set now to move toward an up-or-down vote on the Senate healthcare bill, as well as a separate, up-or-down vote on the series of changes to that bill. There will still be a vote on the rule, as there always is for a piece of legislation, though it will not package the two bills together.

So why did they abandon their “plan A”? Did people make enough noise that they finally heard the voice of the American people? Or do they have some other nefarious plan up their sleeves?

An estimated 30,000 – 50,000 people showed up in Washington today to voice their concerns about the bill. I wish I could have been there.

The House Committee on Rules released the summary of amendments for H.R. 4872 – the Reconciliation Act of 2010, which will modify the bill (if the Senate approves these amendments as well) once it is passed. The following is a list of those proposed amendments.

Continue reading

A Vote For This Bill Is Nuts!

I’ve got a lot planned this weekend, in addition to keeping an eye on the health care “debate” in Congress.

Today, House Republican Leader, John Boehner (R-OH) sent a letter to Speaker of the House Nanny State Nancy Pelosi, which stated,

March 19, 2010

The Honorable Nancy Pelosi
Office of the Speaker
H232 Capitol
Washington, DC 20515

Dear Speaker Pelosi:

It appears the House of Representatives will proceed with plans to vote this weekend on President Obama’s health care legislation, despite the well-documented objections of the American people to both the contents of the bill and the manner in which the Democratic leadership hopes to pass it.

This weekend’s votes will be among the most consequential votes we will ever cast as Members of Congress. As such, it is my belief that every Member should stand before the American people and announce his or her vote as the final decision is made.

With this in mind, I request that you use your discretion under the Rules of the House of Representatives, Clause 2 and 3 of House Rule XX, to conduct the record vote by call of the roll for both adoption of the Senate health care bill (i.e. the Senate Amendment to H.R. 3590, as passed on Christmas Eve this past year) and for the rule making that bill in order.

Thank you for your consideration of this request.

Sincerely,

John Boehner

How much do you want to bet she will not force members to a roll call vote, which would require them to verbally voice their support or opposition to the bill. None of those who support the measure want their opponents to have that sound bite on file come November.

Democrats are touting the CBO report on the bill, but today, the same CBO revealed some further information.

The Congressional Budget Office said Friday that rolling back a programmed cut in Medicare fees to doctors would cost $208 billion over 10 years. If added back to the health care overhaul bill, it would wipe out all the deficit reduction, leaving the legislation $59 billion in the red.

Does anyone really think this health care bill, let alone any government entitlement program ever saves money?

Vice-President and Gaffer-In-Chief, Joe Biden, sat down with ABC News for an interview, where he said,

You know we’re going to control the insurance companies.

Isn’t that what the entire health-care bill is about? Control? Control of the insurance companies, control of the hospitals, control of the doctors, control of your medical decisions. Control, control, control. It’s all about control. READ THE BILL!

Yesterday, I wrote for the third time that the Slaughter “rule” or solution as it is now being called, is unconstitutional. I’m not the only one who thinks so.

Many Democrats could claim they opposed the Senate bill while allowing it to pass. This would be an unprecedented violation of our democratic norms and procedures, established since the inception of the republic. Article 1, Section 7 of the Constitution stipulates that for any bill to become a law, it must pass both the House of Representatives and the Senate. That is, not be “deemed” to have passed, but actually be voted on with the support of the required majority. The bill must contain the exact same language in both chambers – and in the version signed by the president – to be a legitimate law. This is why the House and Senate have a conference committee to iron out differences of competing versions. This is Civics 101.

Civics 101, a lesson ignored by more than 200 House Democrats.

Companies will go bankrupt if this health-care bill passes. Companies know it. We know it. The United States of America will go bankrupt if this bill passes. You know it. To think otherwise, is just nuts.

Do your part and Call Congress Now, before it’s too late!

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