So, what exactly is the public option?

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZXFHXqrrJ6g[/youtube]

Comments

  1. 1

    bwseattle spews:

    No one knows what a ‘public option’ is or what it will consist of because there is NO TEXT in the form of a BILL or anything that describes EXACTLY what it is. How can people agree or debate about what color an apple is if they have no apple?

  2. 2

    Herbalizer spews:

    I heard if you sign up for the public option the Gov will plant a chip in your brain so they can control your thoughts. Glen Beck says it true.

    Also heard there will secret squad of gay, illegal alien, Mexican men who will rape your grandma with a champagne bottle before they chop her head off with a dull sword.

    WE MUST STAND UP TO THE GOVERNMENT!!!! STOP HEALTH CARE REFORM!!

  3. 3

    spews:

    bwseattle @1,

    Well then, by that measure, how could anybody oppose it, either?

    Honestly, there’s no final bill, but it’s been talked about and debated ad nauseam, and would basically be what Reich describes. It’s not the details that opponents seem to have a problem with, but the very notion itself.

  4. 4

    Not from Seattle spews:

    Goldy,
    The reason people oppose the public option is because of what it will have to become to sustain itself. Barack used the best example himself: the Post Office. What started out as a self sufficient Gov’t agency has turned into waste and mismanagement. UPS and FedEx do not deliver door to door every day in every town in America because they can’t undercut the Post Office. The Public option would undercut all insurance companies, pushing them out. I understand you probably think that is a good thing, but it is not. This would lead to a single payer system in the U.S., the effects of which will not be felt for some 50 years, after research and development for profit have all but vanished because the U.S. took profit out of the eqaution. If it were not for profit, you and the world wouldn’t have your much needed Viagra. The U.S. pays for most of the medical breakthroughs BECAUSE of our approach to health care, not in spite of it.

  5. 5

    bwseattle spews:

    Goldy@3,
    Thank you for realizing my point! I’m glad you get that, and you’re right about how can anyone oppose it also. For or against, if there is no actual article to debate over, there is no debate. I disagree with you, however, that it is not the details people disagree with, because there ARE NO DETAILS. Am I right? I think that IS the problem.

  6. 6

    Politically Incorrect spews:

    I say, if the government wants a public option, it should just completely take over the health care system. All docs, nurses, medical researchers, etc. are made to be government employees. Government takes over medical schools & other medical training facilities and cranks out enough docs, dentists, chiropractors, nurses, orderlies, etc., to run a government plan. All private med and dental practices are seized by government and the owners are just shit-outta-luck. Too bad, but that’s the only way I see this reform working – a total takeover is necessary.

  7. 7

    Not from Seattle spews:

    Politically incorrect,
    That’s actually the way I see it as well. If they don’t, it’s a total waste. Then again, that is the whole problem in itself, isn’t it? That’s why we need to focus on insurance reform. If you want to sell health insurance in the U.S., here are the laws you must follow. Then open it up to ALL markets, let the consumer decide, and monitor the insurance companies like a hawk.

  8. 8

    Politically Incorrect spews:

    Not from Seattle,

    You know, more and more, I’m thinking that government doing a total take-over is the way to go. I think if we increase the number of docs and other health care workers, we’ll get them out of the mode of thinking of medicine as a producer of massive wealth and as a true service to society.

    Plus, I think there needs to be lots more women docs. I think the women would be far more interested in the healing and care-giving than men would be. Let’s face it – a lot of smart men are attracted to medicine because it’s lucrative. Maybe that motivation needs to be quashed??

  9. 9

    Not from Seattle spews:

    Politically Incorrect,

    That is exactly the kind of thinking that has people of a more conservative nature screaming ‘socialism’! The problem is much larger than that and comes down to our very culture as Americans. We are a capitalist society, right from the start. We have to be to remain a constitutional republic based on democratic principles.

    If the government took over completely, health care would be so mediocre it would be utterly laughable. In order to fill demand, the Government would absolutely have people involved in medicine who have no reason being there. The way it is now, schools can choose who to admit and who not to based on merit (or money) and that really isn’t a bad thing. Government would have to meet ‘quotas’ and everything else based on politics, etc. Regardless of motivation, the people who are involved in medicine are the best and the brightest of us all. Med school isn’t ‘easy’. I’d hate to have the guy looking at my appendix to have chosen medicine over city sanitation simply because he wanted to help people, I want him/her to be qualified as well.

    As far as more women getting involved, I have no opinion, I wouldn’t want to perpetuate what would be construed as a stereotype, good or bad. No, I’m not a doctor or a doctors advocate either!

  10. 10

    bwseattle spews:

    @ 8. Politically Incorrect,

    Yeah, that’s pretty much the opposite of the way things are done in this country, for a very very good reason. There are countries that fit the mold you are describing, and I know they are looking for more people. You could easily move there, but be sure you pick the right country for you, because a lot of them, perhaps all of them, will not let you back out. Check out Cuba,Venezuela,China, and North Korea for starters. North Korea, I know, promises a free TV (true!), you can see that on their website. Google DPRK. Good luck.

  11. 11

    ds spews:

    If you’re satisfied with that video, Goldy, you’ve set a very low bar for yourself. People should be asking a great many questions regarding a public option that the video doesn’t come close to answering. One might be what, exactly, the plan is to reduce fraud and abuse in Medicare and Medicaid:

    http://www.usatoday.com/news/h.....titialskip

    to help help pay for health care reform? Another might be why, if we haven’t got control over these abuses after many years, we should expect to have any more success in the future?

    Details, details.

  12. 13

    Sarajane spews:

    Note @4: You say, “This would lead to a single payer system in the U.S., the effects of which will not be felt for some 50 years, after research and development for profit have all but vanished because the U.S. took profit out of the eqaution (sic).”

    Note that there is no R&D in insurance, unless it’s how to deny more claims or play off the insurance regulations of 50 states against one another. We can easily give up the 30% of insurance company costs that include all marketing, lobbying, “underwriting” (cherry-picking what conditions lead to more claims), claims departments that deny legitimate claims and established treatment procedures, and $1M-plus executive pay packages. There is no added-value and no health care in any of this.

    Notice I didn’t say profits. The value in profits is that they motivate investors to invest. Demanding unreasonable returns of over 20% per year is another thing. This is what drove many profitable newspapers out of business, and what fueled the housing bubble. Investors need to get their expectations in line with a sustainable reality.

  13. 14

    Not from Seattle spews:

    #13 Sarajane
    I don’t disagree with any of what you said. I was not clear and bypassed many hurdles to try and make a quick point, my bad.

    The way it is set up now, insurance companies and individuals pay the ‘evil’ pharma (and other research) companies. The pharma companies use some of that money for R&D. If the amount of profit is reduced (from regulations or lowering patent protection, etc, etc) the pharma companies will do something else that enables the kind of profits they like, probably in the defense department or something like that. That leaves fewer companies doing good research (like Europe). There is no doubt that if government gets involved and starts to limit how much doctors are paid and how much pharma can make it will stifle innovation. If govt takes over health care as a whole, this would have to happen.

    Your argument is also why I said earlier I believe the answer lies in more gov’t regulation of the health insurance industry. I’m not too worried about the Govt’ stifling insurance innovation: there is none. Bad investments led to the companies raising rates to cover their ass. Lets limit that kind of nonsense, make the rules for all providers the same as well as fair and make it manageable.

  14. 15

    Not from Seattle spews:

    Notice the thing everyone agrees on here? Lets fix the insurance problem first. I think that could be a simple fix as outlined by Obama. You want to be in the business of health insurance? Here are the rules. After that is done, we can all argue about what else we need to do, but we all know THIS can be done now, and even congress mostly agrees. At least enough to get it passed.

    Is it any wonder that Americans are fed up with all of congress?

  15. 17

    delbert spews:

    Hey, let’s all have public insurance. It’ll be swell – just like public housing. Oh wait…

  16. 18

    Not from Seattle spews:

    I should clarify my position in #15, no ‘public option’ should be used here. Not yet at least. Public option is just another term for ‘welfare program’ just in a nice package.

  17. 20

    YLB spews:

    It’ll be swell – just like public housing. Oh wait…

    I don’t see the Canadians screaming at townhalls to trade their system for ours.

    Neither do I see Vets, TRICARE subscribers or seniors in this country screaming for a voucher for Wellpoint, CIGNA or United Healthcare.

  18. 23

    Marvin Stamn spews:

    20. YLB spews:
    I don’t see the Canadians screaming at townhalls to trade their system for ours.

     
    Canada – Population: 33,212,696
    California – Population 36,756,666
     
    How many kids do you have, are you providing for all their needs? Now imagine you add 12 more kids, could you still give your kids the same? Your kids might be happy now with what you are giving them, if they had an additional 12 brothers/sisters they might not be so pleased.
     
    Rumor has it that canada does not have the same history/tradition of protesting the government that is built into our constitution.
     
    How’s that state run health care in massachusetts doing with a population of 6,497,967.

  19. 25

    bwseattle spews:

    @ 16. YLB,
    No, just reporting what I was told by Maria Cantwells office. I believe she is a DEMOCRAT SENATOR. Her office said yesterday there is NO TEXT, BILL, OR HARD COPY that they can refer us to to verify what Obama was talking about in his speach. That is what I mean by ‘details’.

  20. 26

    Puddybud is shocked SHOCKED spews:

    @25,

    Trying to get facts into ylb non-seeing eye is like talking to a granite counter-top. Your voice echos off the flat surface. He only knows kook-tv and calling you a winger.

  21. 27

    hey dimwits spews:

    the population of fance germany austria scandinavia UK Australia NZ Japan and other countries with single payer or a close variant is greater than our population. so citing the population of canada as being equal to that of california to “explain” why socialism works there but not here is dim witted.

    And this is the most dim witted statement of all:

    “We are a capitalist society, right from the start.” Actually dimwit the government did things like manage expansion, buy territory, provide land grant colleges, give away public land for rail roads fostering economic development, and so on. Also the government took massive amounts of private property a/k/a slaves and didn’t pay. quite the governmental intrusion, no? The “market” you cherish is created, funded, managed, structured overseen by government and includes a great many public options like public power, schools, parks, research, education, regulated monopolies, etc. There is no purely free market we have a MIXED SYSTEM dimwit.

    “We have to be [a capitalist society] to remain a constitutional republic based on democratic principles.”

    No, dim wit, the societies like the UK France Germany canada Australia Austria Scandinavian nations etc. that have an even more even mix of public and private shares of GDP are all constitutional republics with democratic principles so you’re WRONG. You can have a mixed system (what conservatives call socialism) including single payer health care and have lots of democracy including elections, rotation of parties into and out of power, etc.

    Saying that you only have democracy if you have a 70/30 mix of private public or a 60/40 mix rather than a 50-50 mix as in most European nations is simply wrong, deluded, irresponsible, and those saying it are either ignorant or lying.

    Look, you have the conservative party in power in France. They are not eliminating the french national medicine system. People like it. There’s no one in Canada saying let’s copy the American system, no one in France, in fact no one in many nations with so called socialist health care is saying go to what we have, and this includes the conservative parties like the one in UK where the leader just confirmed hell yeah, the UK Conservative Party is the party of the NHS.

    So get a clue, read a book, travel a bit, read a furrener newspaper, learn a foreign language, stop being a benighted ignoramus, and stop spreading disinformation.

  22. 28

    manoftruth spews:

    @27
    ok, you’re so fucking smart and accuse people of spreading false information? then tell me, did obama spread false information when he said illegals wont be covered? do you think he didnt know that when california tried to not cover illegals they lost in court? you want to deny that, or just probably not respond?

  23. 29

    spews:

    I do not support making all healthcare workers government employees. Private companies are better at innovation. Ultimately, it’s all funded by the government. But there still needs to be competition and rewarding merit.

    Universal healthcare with a single payor works fine with private healthcare providers.

    From what I gather, we’re likely to end up with a system that most resembles Switzerland’s. All insurance companies and healthcare providers remain privately owned. There are strict rules for ensuring that patients (consumers) don’t get screwed.

    From a capitalistic viewpoint, the proposed healthcare reform has two big benefits: Real choice (the carrot) and consumer protections (the stick).

    The free market cultists blather about letting the market decide while advocating pro-corporate policies which remove choice as well as reduce incentives for better performance. The end result is more profits for campaign donors.

    The market only works with a level playing field, which the government’s job to determine and enforce.

  24. 30

    YLB spews:

    29 – Well said and it can only go in one ear and out the other of these right wing idiots living off the Sean Inanity Show

  25. 31

    Politically Incorrect spews:

    I still don’t see this thing working without the government managing the whole affair.

  26. 32

    Marvin Stamn spews:

    27. hey dimwits spews:
    the population of fance germany austria scandinavia UK Australia NZ Japan and other countries with single payer or a close variant is greater than our population. so citing the population of canada as being equal to that of california to “explain” why socialism works there but not here is dim witted.

     
    So it’s dimwitted to compare the population of canada to california, but it’s a logical point to compare the total populations of “fance germany austria scandinavia UK Australia NZ Japan and other countries with single payer” to america?
     
    Can you and your mate afford to pay for the raising of 2 children? Can you and your mate afford to pay for the raising of 20 children? Could you and your mate give all 20 children the attention they deserve? Why should the small percentage that foots the federal tax bill be forced to pay even more knowing that care will go down.

  27. 33

    spews:

    Politically Incorrect @ 31

    I still don’t see this thing working without the government managing the whole affair.

    Exactly right.

    Corporations are manifestly unable to regulate (restrain) themselves. Not a shocker, it’s against their self-interest. Only government can make sure every one plays nicely together. The trick is designing open markets that have real choice(s) as well as reward merit and effort.

    Universal health care with a single payor is the correct answer for our society. It is the most fair, the most efficient, and results in the greatest overall well-being. These conclusions cannot be disputed (rationally).

    Consumer choice comes from allowing patients to choose their doctors (which is the norm). Choice also comes from choosing vendors and suppliers through an open bidding process (also the norm).

    Rewarding merit is also crucial. There must be room for failure. Then we can clean up the mess and make room for another aspirant. If everyone is employed by the government, I’m concerned that society can no longer shed the losers. Rhetorical question: How do you clean house at an ossified bureaucracy?

    (I assume that healthcare workers employed by private companies would have the same benefits and protections as their government counterparts.)

  28. 34

    YLB spews:

    Rumor has it that canada does not have the same history/tradition of protesting the government that is built into our constitution.

    Given your track record here, “rumor” from the right wing bullshit websites you copy/paste from: Drudge, Breitbart, Hot Air, FauxNews, etc..

  29. 35

    Not from Seattle spews:

    #27
    Actually, I spend quite a bit of time in the U.K. every year. I talk extensively to the people I work with there all the time regarding issues between both of our countries. So, instead of doing the exact same thing you accuse other people of with the addition of name calling, get a clue yourself. When I actually explain the choices we have with regard to medical care, how much it costs, and how quickly those of us with insurance get excellent care with no compromises, my co-workers in the U.K want to trade systems every time. All they hear is the false argument that people in the U.S. don’t have medical care paid for. It’s easy to forget they pay for their medical care, almost as much as we do if you actually add it all up. And yes, they have to wait a long time for ‘non-essential’ services. Regarding the rest, read more books yourself, Dimwit, then you’ll understand. I don’t expect you to agree.