Are You Serious?

October 27, 2009

By David A. Black, Sr.

The question is, as asked recently by a CSNNews reporter; specifically, where does Congress derive Constitutional authority to mandate that individuals purchase health insurance?

Democratic House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer, of Maryland responded to this subject by citing the ‘General Welfare Clause’.

Representative ‘Stinky’ Hoyer said, “Well, in promoting the ‘General Welfare’, the Constitution obviously gives broad authority to Congress to that end.  We’re trying to make health care more affordable, so I think this is within our constitutional responsibility.”

At least ‘Stinky’ gave his honest opinion when he said, “Congress has broad authority to force Americans to purchase other things as well, so long as it was trying to promote the ‘General Welfare’… we mandate other things as well like paying taxes”.

When asked if there is a limit to what Congress can mandate that an individual purchase in promoting the ‘General Welfare’, ‘Stinky’ said, “I’m sure the [Supreme] Court will find a limit.”

As ‘Stinky’ is the House Majority Leader, apparently the Democrats do not believe there are any limits to which they may dictate how we each spend our hard earned money.

‘Stinky’ is not alone, however.  Senator Patrick Leahy (D), Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, did not cite the Constitution when he responded to a similar question.

Senator ‘Leaky’ Leahy (as Rush nicknamed him) said, “We have plenty of authority. Are you saying there is no authority?  Why would anybody say there is no authority?  I mean, there’s no question there’s authority.  Nobody questions that.”

Then Senator ‘Leaky’ goes way off the map when he tried to justify his statement saying, “Where do we have the authority to set speed limits of an interstate highway?”

Excuse me.  Senator, the States set the speed limits.  The Federal Government simply coerced the States to change the speed limits by threatening to withhold funds.

I’m not going to say that ‘Leakys’ response was ignorant, yet I can’t help but ask; Senator, shouldn’t you be questioning?  Isn’t that part of your job as Chairman of the Judiciary Committee?

Wait a minute.  Wasn’t ‘Leaky’ involved in a recent, ‘high profile’ case?  Oh yeah, that Valerie Plame thing.  That figures.  He couldn’t get that one right either.  Thanks to his adamant ignorance, an innocent man was incarcerated.  Can you say “A Danger to Society”?

Back to ‘Stumpy’.  Maybe he was referencing the Preamble of the Constitution, which states,

We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.

But, that says “promote the Welfare”, not provide for the Welfare.  The founders never intended for the Government to implement policies that encourage, or force, the citizens into a state of dependency on the Federal Government.  Rather, they designed a set of limitations by which to avoid “national dependency”, understanding that dependency of the People, on the Government, only leads to tyranny.

On the other hand, maybe, he was referencing Article I, section 8, which states,

The Congress shall have Power To lay and collect Taxes, Duties, Imposts and Excises, to pay the Debts and provide for the common Defence and general Welfare of the United States; but all Duties, Imposts and Excises shall be uniform throughout the United States.

Article I, section 8, lays the responsibility to “provide for the common Defence and the general Welfare of the United States”, not provide the Welfare of the individual People of the United States.

Article I, section 8, goes on to list the responsibilities of the Congress in plain English, defining the responsibility of the Federal Government to the several States.

Now get ready, I saved the best for last.  When Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi was asked a similar question, she responded with her typical ‘vermin in the headlights expression’, “Are you Serious?  Are you Serious?”

Screecher Pelosi’s press spokesperson, Nadeam Elshami, later explained that questioning the authority of Congress to mandate that individuals purchase health insurance, “Is not a serious question.”

Apparently, the Screecher put out a press release in September claiming Congress has ‘broad powers’ to regulate activities that have an effect on interstate commerce under the ‘Commerce Clause’ in the Constitution.

The ‘Commerce Clause’ is listed in the list of congressional responsibilities under Article I, section 8, stating,

The Congress shall have the Power… To regulate Commerce with foreign Nations, and among the several States, and with the Indian Tribes.

The Supreme Court ruling in Wickard v. Filburn (1942) is the closest precedent to Screecher Pelosi’s argument.  The Court ruled against Mr. Filburn for planting twelve more acres of wheat, grown for personal consumption, than was allowed by regulations in the Second Agricultural Adjustment Act of 1938.

Justice Jackson reasoned that although Mr. Filburn’s wheat alone was trivial, more than twenty percent of all wheat grown, at that time, was privately consumed, and therefore affected interstate commerce by reducing the overall supply and demand.  The Court, determined that the cause and effect of individuals, toward the supply and demand of the market, inherently gives Congress power over the individual under the “Commerce Clause” and thus expanded the powers of government.

The ruling of Wickard v. Filburn followed the logic of the “Commerce Clause” case of United States v. Darby Lumber Co. (1941), which questioned the authority of Congress to institute the Fair Labor Standards Act to institute parity of labor rates to neutralize seemingly unfair interstate competition.

All this said; if Congress truly wanted to regulate health insurance under the Commerce Clause, they should create legislation that allows health insurance to be purchased across States lines.  Congress should disallow States from mandating specific insurance requirements for their State, making it impossible for insurance companies from other States to provide competitive coverage.

What’s that?  A Conservative idea that remains within the confines and limitations of the Constitution?  No.  That’ll never fly in a Congress led by a Liberal Majority.  It does not expand the “Powers of Congress”.  We can’t have that.

As to Speaker Pelosi, Majority Leader Hoyer, Senator Leahy, and the rest of the blithering idiots in Congress who are trying to force their Socialistic version of Government on America by attempting to “nationalize” our Health Care System;

ARE YOU SERIOUS?  But, then again, we’re not supposed to question the authority of those in Congress.

America, why do we even have these… PEOPLE in Congress if they cannot even correctly cite the Constitution of the United States of America, which they all swore an oath to support?


Health Care Reform – A Means to Something More Sinister

October 16, 2009

Part 3 of 3

By David A. Black, Sr.

Part of the problem with the Proposed Health Care Reform Act is that we cannot expect to hear the truth of the issues in “honest debate”.  For instance, the “Death Panel” was adamantly denied, until it was removed from the proposal.

The proposal will allegedly cover the health care of illegal immigrants.  Supporters repudiate this, claiming the language forbids coverage of illegal immigrants.

However, there is nothing in the proposal to allow verification of any recipient’s legal status.  When Conservatives offer legislation to amend the discrepancy, Liberals reject the amendments.

Liberals forget there are laws prohibiting illegal immigration; yet they are here.  Because illegal immigrants ignore our federal immigration laws, it is logical to assume they will ignore any legislated restrictions to “nationalized” health care.

In his speech to the Joint Houses of Congress, President Obama claimed to promote “choice and competition” by officially announcing a “Public Option”.

The president declared, “I have no interest in putting insurance companies out of business. They provide a legitimate service, and employ a lot of our friends and neighbors.  I just want to hold them accountable.”

Ironically, that is similar to President Obama’s comments about not wanting control of General Motors, Chrysler, and companies affected by the “Financial Bail-Out”.  In the aftermath, we find that the opposite is true.  The president, and his administration, have asserted unprecedented control of “Private Industry”.  Why should we expect Health Care to be treated any differently?

The president went on to say, “… it would only be an option for those who don’t have insurance…  In fact, based on Congressional Budget Office estimates, we believe that less than 5% of Americans would sign up.”

Remember, I wrote to begin with, “we cannot expect to hear the truth”; you decide.

The president first cites to the falsely inflated number of 15% of Americans being uninsured at some point, and then exaggerates the number by doubling the time period, erringly assuming that doing so automatically doubles the number of people affected.

How so?  He claimed that one in three Americans goes without coverage at some point; that is more than 30%.   Then something closer to the truth slips out when he cited the CBO saying, “…only 5% will sign up”.

Mr. President, is it 15%, 30%, or 5%?  You referred to, or quoted all three percentages in the same speech.  With all due respect Sir, annoying little facts, known as the truth, will come back to bite you when they are misrepresented.

President Obama promised the following points in his “sales pitch” for the “Public Option;

1.  No tax subsidies for the “Public Option”.

2.  No additional deficit spending.

3.  Not a dollar of the Medicare trust fund will be used to pay for the “Public Option”.

4.  Greater security for the middle-class, not higher taxes.

Ignoring the fact that President Obama contradicted every point in his speech, and assuming the president intends to abide by these four points.  Logically, to accommodate the “Public Option”, the president is proposing another Government Subsidized Entity, similar to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. (Who, along with GM and Chrysler, the newest GSE’s, are going bankrupt)

Think about it!  Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, GM, Chrysler, and the financial industry staggering under the weight of the government…These are prime examples of what to expect for our health care system under a “Public Option”.

The only way for a “Public Option” to abide by the four points in his “sales pitch”, and maintain “choice and competition”, is to mandate that the ‘Public Provider” abide by the same laws enforced on “Private Providers”.  This means, among other things, the “Public Provider” would be required to establish “security holdings”, (typically 70 – 80% of their policy values) to ensure the financial ability to cover claims.

In order to stay in existence, insurers must guarantee the principles, which are the premiums paid by the people.  To do this, insurance companies invest the premiums they collect to cover claims that may exist on their policies and for their own business returns as well, including operating costs.

This means, the government, through the “Public Provider” would necessarily purchase stocks, bonds, real estate, and commodities to amass profits. (Not a far stretch after the Auto and Financial Bail-Outs)

Politicians engaged in such activities create obvious potential dangers.  In short, your tax dollars would be risked, or “invested”, in the stock market to cover the costs of the “Public Option”.

Keep in mind, during his speech, President Obama informed us that nationalizing health care through a “Public Option” is only a part of his plan; he reminded his “Progressive Friends” that, “The ‘Public Option’ is only a means to that end – and we should remain open to other ideas that accomplish our ultimate goals.”

What are the “ultimate goals” of the presidents “Progressive Friends”?

Government “investing” tax dollars in “Private Industry” is a one-way ticket to corruption.  It will not be long before politicians assume massive control of the market through legislation, to “protect” the investments of the “tax payers”.

Considering the government prints money at will, this creates an environment in which private insurance companies cannot compete.  In relatively short time, financial pressures will force “Private Providers” to file for bankruptcy.

There is no better “investment” than to acquire failing competitors.  Therefore, through “free market capitalist investing, “private assets” would end up in the government’s possession.

DANGER! The president is proposing a “hostile takeover” of our nation.  He is simply using Health Care Reform as a vehicle to reach a more sinister destination.  The “Public Option” creates a potential “enemy from within”, using Capitalism, to accomplish Socialism.

Nationalized Health Care is, by its nature, another form of Socialism being introduced to a “free” society; another attempt to gain control of all major methods of production in an effort to confiscate wealth and dictate the lives of individuals through mandates and distribution of means.

Redistribution, or the practice of taking from one societal group to provide for another group, is Socialism.

The government dictating compliance by mandating involvement of private individuals in government run programs is Communism.

America was created, by design, as a Capitalist Society; a social system based on individual rights through the separation of the economy and the Government; with a limited government, relegated to the duties of protecting the rights of the People.  America is founded on the rights, of individuals, to Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of happiness.  Americans enjoy the right to possess private property, and maintain the right to individually contract to, and profit from our own labor.

The right to Life and Liberty guarantees us to freedom from oppression, freedom from burdensome government, and the right to freedom of actions in our individual Pursuit of Happiness, so long as no person or group infringes or violates the rights of another.

Previously, in “The Health Care Reform Act of 2009 – Crisis or Coercion”, I disputed the “facts” the president termed “undisputable”.

In “National Health Care and the Constitution”, I called the president out, defying him to present an argument, giving him or Congress the Constitutional Power or Authority to legislate “National Health Care Reform”.

Now, I am declaring the potential dangers of a sinister agenda.

I reject giving the President, or Congress, the Power to implement legislation that could, so easily, be used as a means to anything as sinister as what I have described.

The Founders intended to create a nation of “free men”, fundamentally rooted in societal and economic capitalism, to preserve the natural rights of each individual.  Any attempt to vilify capitalism, or provide support of socialism is, in a word, un-American.

I maintain, that if America allows the nationalization of our health care system, we are only a step away from saying goodbye to our Representative Republic, and hello to a Socialist State; in essence, saying goodbye to Liberty, and welcoming Tyranny.

So long as a single Patriot fights for Liberty, Freedom lives.  Never stop fighting.

Part 1 of 3:  The Health Care Reform Act of 2009 – Crisis or Coercion

Part 2 of 3:  National Health Care and the Constitution


National Health Care & the Constitution

October 4, 2009

Part 2 of 3

By David A. Black, Sr.

Lately, we have heard an earful about Death Panels, nationalization of health care with forced participation, the Public Option, and using taxpayer’s money to pay for abortions and provide medical benefits for illegal immigrants.  With all of the recent debates over Health Care, our Political Representatives in Congress, along with our President, have forgotten the most important debate of all; or possibly, they are purposefully avoiding it.

In an effort to promote the beliefs represented by their ideology, they are forgetting, or ignoring, their responsibilities under the Constitution of the United States of America.  Let me take a moment to remind them of the burden they have been elected to carry.

The Founders of this nation went to great lengths to limit the Powers and Authority of the Federal Government.  In doing so, they outlined the purpose of the Government in the Preamble of the Constitution, which states,

We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America. (Sic)

NOTE: The key phrase is “promote the Welfare”, not provide for the Welfare.  The founders never intended for the Government to implement policies that encourage, or force, the citizens of our nation into a state of dependency on the Federal Government.  Rather, they designed a set of limitations by which to avoid “national dependency”, understanding that dependency of the People, on the Government, can only lead to tyranny.

I know!  The Liberal argument points to Article I, section 8, which states,

The Congress shall have Power To lay and collect Taxes, Duties, Imposts and Excises, to pay the Debts and provide for the common Defence and general Welfare of the United States; but all Duties, Imposts and Excises shall be uniform throughout the United States. (Sic)

NOTE: This section lays the responsibility to “provide for the common Defence and the general Welfare of the United States”, not provide the Welfare of the individual People of the United States.  Article I, section 8, refers to the responsibility of the Federal Government to the several States, in representing the United States to other nations, in the establishment of foreign policies, and the power to establish the means, within the limits of the Constitution, to pay for the country’s debts.

Then there is the pesky Bill of Rights.  The President’s proposal of a $1900 penalty for failing to comply with his wishes is a fine for violating a law.  This “penalty” means people will be found guilty of a crime without the benefit of a trial.  This violates our individual right to due process under the Fifth Amendment, which states,

No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a Grand Jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the Militia, when in actual service in time of War or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offence to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation. (Sic)

We must stop allowing “leftist” politicians to misinterpret, thus purposefully molest the intent of the founders, and pervert the Constitution.  The Power and Authority to provide for the People is reserved to the individual States respectively, or to the People, under the protection of the Ninth and Tenth Amendments in the Bill of Rights, which state,

Amendment IX

The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the People. (Sic)

Amendment X

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. (Sic)

How many members of the U.S. Senate have abandoned their loyalties to their party, and exercised their responsibility to argue for the interests of the State they represent, and protect the Constitution of the United States of America by enforcing the limitations of Government mandated therein?

It is important to remember, the Constitution was implemented, by the Founders of this great nation, as a tool to limit the Powers and Authority of the Government, and to protect the rights of the People.  President Reagan understood this when he said, “We are a People with a government, not a Government with a people”.  Therefore, we must remain diligently cognizant of the attempts, by the Government, to usurp our rights, and stop them.  As President Lincoln once said, “We are the Masters of our Government and of our Constitution”.

Though I am tempted, albeit for a different reason, I will not say, “You lie!”

However, I will say, “Mr. President, you are wrong!  Again!”

Mr. President, I have already disputed your “undisputable facts”.  I have challenged that you and the Liberal Democrats in Congress are misrepresenting the facts.  I have also accused you and the Left of using a “protection racket” riddled with “fear tactics” to coerce America, into reconfiguring our health care system.

Now Mr. President, I dispute the fact that you, and your socialist-minded sycophants in Congress, possess the Power and Authority, under the limitations of the Constitution, to usurp the rights of the several States and the People.

I hereby defy the President, to present a sound argument that would give him, or Congress, the right to legislate a National Health Care Reform Act.

I, for one, deny and reject giving the President, or Congress, the Power to implement legislation that would, in any way, “nationalize” our health care system or “socialize” our country.

Unlike the President, I am not, nor have I ever been, a Constitutional Professor.  I am however, a red-blooded American Citizen.  I am a student of the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, and the Bill of Rights.  I am proud of the Founders of our nation, the product of their labors, and their vision for America.  As such, I refuse to apologize for the exceptionalism of our nation, or willfully allow for the degradation of our traditions and values, or the destruction of our Freedom and Liberty.

If America allows the President, and his supporters in Congress, to succeed in nationalizing our health care system, we are only a step away from saying goodbye to our Representative Republic, and hello to a Socialist State; in essence, saying goodbye to Liberty, and welcoming Tyranny.


The Health Care Reform Act of 2009 – Crisis or Coercion

September 29, 2009

Part 1 of 3

By David A. Black, Sr.

In his speech to the joint houses of Congress on September 9, 2009, to stump for National Health Care Reform, the President compared our health care to that of other nations saying, “We are the only advanced democracy on Earth – the only wealthy nation – that allows such hardships for millions of its people.”

What President Obama failed to point out is, while other countries may provide medical coverage to all their citizens, many of their citizens come to the United States seeking the medical treatment they cannot obtain at home.  What good is medical coverage, if you cannot obtain the necessary medical treatment?

Conservatives, Moderates, and Liberals are unifying against “Nation Health Care Reform” for the aforementioned reason and others, a few of which I will identify here.

The premise of the “crisis” false.

The President claimed that Health Care Reform is “central” to the future of our nation, and that Congresses failure to meet the challenge for the past six and a half decades has led us to the breaking point.  This claim bolsters his statements, citing health care as a primary cause of the National Deficit. (Remember, Congress spending more money than is available is the cause of the deficit.)

While painting a grim picture of the future, due to the exploits of the “Greedy Health Care Industry”, the President resorted to “scare tactics” attempting to play to the emotions of the American People.  The President argued that a large number of people are “one accident or illness away from bankruptcy”, that the cost of health insurance is unaffordable, and that Americans who are willing and able to purchase health insurance are routinely denied.

The President manipulated the facts when citing a 2006 census estimate, stating, “There are more than thirty million American citizens who cannot get coverage.  In a two year period, one in every three Americans goes without health care coverage at some point”.

The claims, provided by the Census Bureau, assert that 15% of the U.S. population, or approximately 50 million people, were uninsured at one point during the calendar year 2006.  Contrary to the President’s claim, the report did not identify this group as unable to obtain Health Care; nor did the report identify this group as uninsurable.

Furthermore, the President conveniently failed to point out a fact detailed in his book, Liberty and Tyranny, by conservative radio talk show host, Mark Levin; the 15%, to which the report refers, includes illegal immigrants, people between the ages of 18 – 35 who opted not to obtain health care, and yet another group that qualifies for medical coverage through Public Assistance and did not apply for it.  When the truth is considered in the equation, we find less than 5%, of Americans unable to obtain health insurance; less than half of the number the President claims.  To clarify the results, another detailed study would be necessary to determine why the effected people are without insurance.

I will be first to agree, every American citizen should be able to obtain minimum health coverage.  However, with a population of over 300 million, the needs of less than 5% of the people, while meriting serious consideration, does not qualify as a “crisis”.  Logically, this means approximately 95% of the population, or more than 285 million people, are happy with their current health care, or at least have coverage available.

To determine that “one in three Americans goes without health coverage at some point” President Obama simply doubled the numbers for dramatic impact.  His statement assumes that if approximately 50 million people were not covered at some point in one year, then 100 million would be left uncovered in a two-year period, thereby camouflaging his claim of “one in three”.

Though the number of people experiencing periods of being uninsured would probably increase in the second year due to the rise in unemployment levels, the President chooses not to consider that a large number of the same people are counted a second time in the subsequent year.  The President’s skewed approach of simply double the time period, equals double the effect, misleads the nation, using “fear tactics” to manipulate us into accepting Health Care Reform.

There is no true intention to cut costs.

The President said, “We spend one-and-a-half times more per person on health care than any other country, but we aren’t any healthier for it.”  He goes on to admit that, “those of us with health insurance are also paying a hidden and growing tax for those without it – about $1000 per year pays for somebody else’s emergency room and charitable care”.

How much of what we are forced to pay, goes to providing care for the above-mentioned people?  Remember, Federal Law prohibits refusal of treatment to any person, regardless of ability to pay.  Other than using it as a talking point, how much wasteful spending is due to fraud in the Medicare and Medicaid systems?  What steps have been proposed to identify and correct the rampant waste, fraud, and abuse in these programs?

How much of what we pay goes to wasteful costs due to excessive, bureaucratic red tape, unnecessary tests, and the exorbitant cost of malpractice insurance to protect Doctors from litigation, because the Government refuses to enact Tort Reform?  Instead, the President is directing his Secretary of Health and Human Services to move forward with an initiative to set up “demonstration projects” on Tort Reform.  If Tort Reform is a “good idea”, why not recommend that Congress legislate it?

How much more must Private insurers pay for the treatment of their Policy Holders, to offset the amounts left unpaid by the Government?  The President failed to tell us that the Government only pays approximately 20% on the bills they receive for the treatment of those covered under Medicare and Medicaid; health care providers are expected to write off the remaining balances.

Additionally, what about the excessive, confusing, redundant paperwork, required by the Government, and insurance companies, as a means to provide excuses to deny payments for services?  The Government practice of short paying bills and denying payment due to improperly negotiating the maze of “red tape” encourages fraud.  Correct these issues first.  We may be possible that the entire health care system is in need of Reform.

In trying to force compliance, the President’s proposal sets a “minimum cost of insurance coverage”.  A minimum cost is the effect of the proposed tax penalty, of up to $1900, charged to those who do not purchase health care insurance, otherwise referred to as an “incentive”.  Insurance companies will set that amount as a minimum rate.

Additionally, the tax penalty does nothing to correct the alleged problem; if health coverage is not purchased, and a person needs medical attention, under the President’s proposal, they would have the $1900 less to put toward their medical bills. The whole process of using tax penalties to force compliance is a “protection racket”, a tactic used by organized crime where damage is inflicted, then followed with an offer of protection for a fee. (I hear this was one of Al Capone’s favorite tactics of extortion.  Wasn’t he from Chicago too?  It must have something to do with the water.) If the President’s proposal were the “right thing”, he would not need “bully tactics”.

In conclusion, I agree that the current health care system calls for serious consideration.  Therefore, the Federal Government should promote legislation that assists the several States in rectifying health care in their independent States, just as the President agrees to do regarding “Tort Reform”.  Because he is a former Constitutional Professor, I would think this should have been President Obama’s first inclination.

Mr. President, you said, “These are the facts.  Nobody disputes them.”  You warned, “If you misrepresent what’s in the plan, we will call you out.”

Sorry, Mr. President, I am calling you out!

I reject your “undisputable facts”, and the logic demonstrated in manipulating statistics to coerce the nation into reconfiguring our nation’s health care system by falsely declaring a “Crisis”.  Like a “snake oil peddler”, you have misrepresented the facts to sell America on your flawed, socialistic plan.

With all due respect, every President must earn the respect and trust of the nation.  Mr. President, you are far from accomplishing this task.  Now is a good time to start.

Part 2 of 3 part series:  National Health Care & the Constitution


Could Mr. Mackey be Right Regarding Health Care Reform?

August 31, 2009

In case you haven’t heard, people are boycotting Whole Foods Markets because they want to stifle Whole Foods CEO, John Mackey who wrote an op-ed piece for the Wall Street Journal.

This is just great!  I thought inwardly.  First, the Liberals, while denying any opportunity for honest debate with their conservative counterparts and absolutely ignoring their constituencies, complain that no alternative ideas for health care are being offered from those on the right.

Then, when someone steps up from the “Private Sector”, who by the way is a member of a constituency that is being ignored, and offers a written opinion of several ideas.  The liberals respond to his offering, by becoming angry and shouting, “BOYCOTT!

Maybe the founder of the boycott, playwright Mark Rosenthal, would like our country to more resemble his depiction of it in the end of his movie, “Planet of the Apes”.  Alternatively, maybe he just believes animals can run the Health Care System.

I suppose liberals like Screecher Pelosi, Majority Leader Squeaky Harry Reid, and President Obama-hood and his Merry Minions consider Mr. Mackey to be un-American, a Nazi, or some type of Conservative Political Terrorist.

Well, I looked up Mr. Mackey’s article, thinking that he must have really gone off the deep end of reality for people to be so enraged.  You can imagine my disgust when I found that he began his piece with a quote of Margaret Thatcher, who said,

“The problem with socialism is that eventually you run out of other people’s money.”

Mr. Mackey put himself in the line of fire when he wrote,

While we clearly need health-care reform, the last thing our country needs is a massive new health-care entitlement that will create    hundreds of billions of dollars of new unfunded deficits and move us much closer to a government takeover of our health-care system.

Mr. Mackey went on to express a desire of “less government control and more individual empowerment”.  To accomplish this he offered eight different points, he feels needs to be addressed, regarding Health Care Reform.  They are;

  • Remove the legal obstacles that slow the creation of high-deductible health insurance plans and health savings accounts (HSA’s).  The combination of high-deductible health insurance plans and HSA’s is one solution that could solve many of our health-care problems.

–          Now that sounds like an alternative to Nationalized Health Care.

  • Equalize the tax laws so that employer-provided health insurance and individually owned health insurance have the same benefits.

–          Doesn’t this fall under “fair and equal taxation?  I thought the liberals were all for “fair and equal”.

  • Repeal all state laws which prevent insurance companies from competing across state lines.

–          If I am not mistaken, this repeal should be mandated due to the “Interstate Commerce Clause” of the Constitution.  I know, there is no room for the Constitution in liberal Health Care Reform.

  • Repeal government mandates regarding what insurance companies must offer.

–          Wow!  What a concept!  Allowing individual choice, and the power of the “free market” to determine what people can purchase, instead of maintaining the ideology that a few politicians and some special interest groups know what is best for the masses.

  • Enact tort reform to end the ruinous lawsuits that force doctors to pay insurance costs of hundreds of thousands of dollars per year.

–          Now, this one could be a real problem.  Medical Tort Reform could lead to the need of another bailout, this time for the Trial Lawyers.

  • Make costs transparent so that consumers understand what health-care treatments cost.

–          This idea assumes that people are interested in understanding how much their Health Care Benefits are worth.  Most people think the costs are all covered by their co-pay and their monthly premiums.  Who wants to take the time to add up all the actual costs?

  • Enact Medicare reform.

–          According to Obama-hood, Medicare will be fine under Nationalized Health Care.  After all, Medicare is the current program that all the new proposed coverage will fold into, in order to maintain costs.  On the other hand, maybe the liberals figure it will be easier to hide the cost discrepancies of Nationalized Health Care in a system that is already convoluted and beyond fiscal comprehension.

  • Revise tax forms to make it easier for individuals to make a voluntary, tax-deductible donation to help those who are not covered under Medicare.

–          Mr. Mackey, please; you are not suggesting a true form of charity, where one person willingly gives to another, or a cause, because the individual chooses to.  Remember, you are speaking of a liberal, political ideology.  In the liberal mindset, the only true charity is that by which the people are compelled to contribute through taxation.  A fully deductible donation?  If the politicians do that, we may not need the government to be involved at all.  What good liberal would ever stand for that?

Mr. Mackey definitely crossed the line when he went on to write that,

Rather than increase government spending and control, we need to address the root causes of poor health. This begins with the realization that every American adult is responsible for his or her own health.

Individuals cannot expect to receive entitled benefits if they are to be held personally responsible for themselves.  This attitude of personal responsibility deters from the ideology of each American asking, what can my country can do for me. (Thank you, President J, F. Kennedy)  Therefore, personal responsibility has no merit in the debate of National Health Care.  Can you imagine?

To top it all off, today I watched a segment of Forbes on Fox that addresses a public calling for “CEO’s to shut up when it comes to politics”.  This segment singled out Mr. Mackey because of his recent Op-Ed piece.

I would ask these same individuals or groups; does Mr. Mackey, or any other CEO, have less of a right to freedom of speech, under the first amendment, than any other American, due to their position?  If so, why was there no public outcry from the left when Mr. Gettelfinger, president of the Auto workers union, involved himself in the Auto-Industry Bail-outs and the government takeover of General Motors.

Oh, I know, that was a liberal thing.


Health Care Reform – Congressional Malpractice

August 25, 2009

I read an excellent series of articles published by M. Smith, beginning with, “Profits… What are they and what do they do? I highly recommend this article as it provoked me to think about the current “Health Care Crisis” in a very different light.

I too, at least in part, attributed too much blame for the current “Health Care Crisis” to the insurance companies.  After reading Mr. Smith’s article, I began to question, what exactly should we expect from our medical insurance.   Should the insurance companies be held responsible for our medical treatment?  Is it right and moral that insurers turn our health concerns into a commodity by which they can turn profits?  Should we limit the profits they can make?

Let’s face it, insurance providers are involved in a screwy game.  By purchasing insurance, we are literally betting against ourselves by wagering that we are going to get injured or sick.  In the process, we force the insurance company to take the opposite position, betting that we will not get injured or sick.  Anyone with just a little common sense can see who is going to lose that wager.  The question is not if I am going to need medical treatment, everyone is injured or gets sick, rather the questions are when, and how serious.

As much as President Obama and the Congressional Democrats would like to vilify the insurance companies, in an effort to promote Nationalized Health Care, the fact is, these private sector companies provide a very important service.

Paying for medical treatment can be overwhelming.  We often joke that if the trip to the hospital does not kill you, the bill will.  Therefore, we purchase insurance to hedge our losses.  Think about how self-defeating the idea of insurance is; we purchase insurance for peace of mind, and then hope we never need it.

Honestly, it reminds me of “Emergency Preparedness”.  This country spends a lot of time, energy, and money on planning and training for emergencies, all the while hoping we never need to implement these plans.  However, in the event of an emergency, think of how devastating an incident (i.e. natural disasters such as hurricanes, tornadoes, earthquakes, wild fires, and floods, or events of the manmade variety such as terrorism, riots, or even mass gatherings for concerts) would be without the advanced planning and training.

How much profit is acceptable?  Other than maintaining the ability to operate within the regulations foisted upon insurance companies by the Government, the answer depends entirely on whether you own any of insurance stocks.  After all, like several retailers, manufacturers, and utilities, most insurance companies are publicly traded on the stock market, and therefore have a responsibility to shareholders to remain profitable.

Oh, I know!  We do not hear those in favor of “Health Care Reform” discussing this aspect of the issue.  Those who are attempting to control your health care decisions from some smoke filled, hidden, back office of a Washingtonian basement do not mention the legislative obstacles that Congress has inflicted on the insurance companies.  Have you ever thought about the financial and legal criteria that must be met before an insurance company can sign their first client?

Other than meeting the litany of requirements of the Securities and Exchange Commission, as a prerequisite for Wall Street, the legislation requires insurance companies to maintain significant financial holdings as proof of ability to pay for your coverage.  The issue becomes even more complex when licensing is taken into consideration, and licensing becomes even more convoluted as each State commissions their own sets of regulations for the insurance providers.

Ironically, on one hand, we demand the services of the insurance companies, and that they earn profits to satisfy the shareholders that provide the capital to fund the services. On the other hand, we accuse them of wrongfully profiteering from the health care needs of the people.

As Obama and his Congressional Cronies continue their vilification of the insurance industry and their investors, bear in mind the role of the insurance companies, and the service they provide; simply stated, Health Insurers provide a means of managing health care expenses.

Insurance providers manage health care expenses by;

  1. Contracting coverage to groups or individuals, who pay premiums to protect against unexpected health care costs.
  2. Contracting with health care providers, and facilities, to render medical services.
  3. Estimating the annual costs of health care services to determine premiums.
  4. Ensure funds are available to pay for contracted services.

Notice, I did not include “providing treatment” in the list.  Providing medical treatment is not the responsibility of the insurance companies; but rather, providing assistance in managing the expenses of the medical treatment.

As a side note, I have not heard of an insurance company denying treatment to a patient, only denying coverage of treatment not included in the contracted services.  Although they will have to pay for it, patients can still receive the treatment not covered under the insurance contract.

America is a “Free Market, Capitalist” country, and insurance companies are earning profits while remaining within the scope of the “Laws of the Land” and the rules and regulations of their industry.

Lest we forget, when considering Government Health Care Reform, we already suffer from the effects of previous dabbling from Congress.  Remember, Congress federally mandated that no person be denied medical treatment, regardless of the person’s ability to pay.  This forces hospitals render unreimbursable services, negatively impacting the efficiency of our Health Care System and significantly driving up the cost of expenses.

America cannot afford more unconstitutional acts of irresponsibility from more “Congressional Malpractice”.  We can ill afford to destroy the benefits of the majority, who enjoy the health care they pay for, by catering to a very small minority and transforming marketable benefits into entitlements.


Cash for Clunkers – Deal? Or, No Deal?

August 9, 2009

So, here we are.  It only took the Government approximately two weeks to spend $1 billion (that is with a ‘B’, as in “Bucks”) on the “Cash for Clunkers” program.  Congress would have been happy to spend more of your hard-earned money up front, but $1 billion is all that was allocated in the bill.

Now we are looking at round two, and this time Congress is doubling the effort.  Because it worked so gol-darn well, the Government is going to authorize another $2 billion for the “Cash for Clunkers” program.  So ante up folks, Washington is feeling generous, as the 2010 campaigns will be getting under way.  They need a way to redistribute your wealth to make them look good and buy some more votes.

Let me state, for the record, I understand there are a lot of people that, due to the program, have new cars parked in their driveways that would not otherwise be there.  Also, there are that many older cars that no longer plague our roadways.  However, I must ask the question.  Have any of these people thanked you for your contribution to the betterment of their condition?

Yes, America.  You are now owed a great debt of gratitude for assisting in the purchases of all those new cars.  How many?  At $4500 each, $1 billion buys a total, of a little over 222,000 down payments on new cars.  At an average purchase price of approximately $25,000 per new car, the program should account for gross sales of just over $5.5 billion for the auto industry.

Bear in mind, the “Cash for Clunker” program allowed foreign manufacturers in on the deal as well, so Detroit and Government Motors will not glean all the profits; as a matter of fact, they held “true to form” and maintain their dismal market share.

For the moment however, let us assume all the cars purchased, with the assistance of the program, were purchased from Government Motors and Chrysler.  When you consider that most well run corporations operate at a profit of less than 10% of gross sales, and for purposes of recognizing that GM is now leaner and more efficient operating under President Obama, we will allow the full 10%; the program produces a profit of approximately $550 million.

If GM and Chrysler would have been the sole beneficiaries of the program, and all the profit went to repaying the massive bailout of the auto industry, they still owe the Taxpayers approximately 14.5 billion to the tax payers.

However, those $4500.00 payouts merely provide down payments; maybe we have missed the boat on this one.  Maybe the real payback is going to come from the interest earned by the finance companies, which the Government has their meaty little hooks in as well.  After all, according to the numbers used above, the finance companies would have financed some $4.75 billion, which would produce approximately $4.5 – 5 billion of gross revenues, to the finance companies, over the next five to six years.  At 10% profit, 100% of which being paid back to the Taxpayers, that should put another $500 million back in our pockets by the end of 2015, or a little under $100 million per year.  What a deal!

All right, it is time for a reality check.  The fact is, the money supplied to fund the “Cash for Clunkers” program, was first borrowed by the Government, some of which at rates reportedly as high as 30%.  In the end, you and I get to pay the tab for all those new cars, and we never even get to see them, let alone drive them.  Then of course, there is the pesky little fact that we get to pay for them at the government deficit rate, which means each car will cost up to $100,000.00 instead of the $25000.00 purchase price.  Oh, happy day!

Think about it; the Government borrows $1 billion to loan out in $4500 increments, to people who could not otherwise afford it, to purchase approximately 222,000 automobiles, at an average cost of $25,000, and we get to pay back an amount, of up to ten times the original amount borrowed by the government, to satisfy the debt.

I thought President Obama was being hailed, by some on the left, as the smartest President we have ever had.  I might be missing something here, but I do not understand the math on this one.  Maybe the tried and true formulas of mathematics have changed since I went to school; or maybe this is what they were referring to by “New Math”.

The simple truth is, America cannot afford this, or any other give-away programs intended for the sole purpose of buying votes.  “Cash for Clunkers” is not improving the economy or consumer confidence with any sustainable influence, nor will it.  Moreover, as I pointed out, the Taxpayers are going to be saddled with the debt.

In fact, we have yet to experience the unintentional consequences of the “Cash for Clunkers” program.  The program will provide a shortage of used cars and parts, thus driving up the cost of these vehicles.  You know, used cars, the very cars bought and driven by those who cannot afford new cars, but earn too much income to qualify for government assistance, the true middle class, and the actual people who will have to pay the bill in the end.

How many jobs will be lost due to the rising cost of used cars and the lack of parts?  Used car dealers will not be able to sell as many cars, thus they will maintain fewer salespeople.  Parts will be harder to come by, and consequently more expensive, thus causing closures and layoffs at small repair shops who thrive on keeping these cars running at the lowest possible cost.  In addition, how many of the people, assisted by the program, in purchasing new cars, will default on the loans, causing yet another hit on the still shaky financial industry?

No, folks.  It seems to me that Scary Barry and his Congressional Cronies have not thought this one through.  It seems there are too many negatives for the Taxpayers in this “Cash for Clunkers” deal.

Hey!  I got an idea!  How about, we tell Barack Obama Hood and his merry men in Congress to stop looking for ways give away and spend money that we do not have, in an effort to buy our votes?  Maybe instead, they can start looking for ways to begin paying down the national debt.

Mr. President, if you really want to give us something, give us a plan to restore our national financial security.  Give us a plan to secure our borders against invasions of all types, a plan to restore our nation and our military to the “superpower” status we have rightfully earned.  Give us a plan to reduce the size of the Federal Government, a plan to restore the value of our currency returning to a free market and capitalism.