Comments about ‘Robert Bennett: Obamacare is like a 1955 Pontiac’

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Published: Monday, Jan. 27 2014 12:00 a.m. MST

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provo, Utah

Right, and republicans are so scared people will like it they tried to keep it from being funded after it was made a law.

If they truly believed their own lies they would just watch and let it fail on it's own.

The truth is Japan, Australia and Sweden to name a few already have and love their Obamacare like healthcare. They spend half as much as we do and get better healthcare. That should be enough to go on.

Far East USA, SC

The population is aging. Health care costs are skyrocketing.

Any unbiased look must conclude that our biggest future federal deficit problem is medicare and medicaid.

So, we have 3 choices.

1) reduce medicare and medicaid benefits
2) increase the funding (ie taxes) to pay for these services
3) reduce the costs of providing these services.

Does anyone disagree with that? If so, please explain.

Part of the problem is that the businesses who provide these services have no incentive to reduce the costs. Their goal is to increase profits.

Tell me. Which of the major healthcare pieces, besides the government has an interest in controlling costs?
Hospitals? Nope
Insurance companies? Not really
Doctors? Not at all

We can complain all we want about Obamacare. And there are tons of reasons to complain.

But, the pre Obamacare status quo is unacceptable and unsustainable.

Until people grasp THAT truth, we will not deal with the problem.

Lets say the GOP was successful in killing Obamacare. Then what?

If one looks honestly at the facts and the truth, they can only conclude that something must be done.

Far too many think that reducing regulations will fix the problem.

That is ludicrous.

Twin Lights
Louisville, KY

You mean a Republican and a Democrat trying to solve a problem together? Of course that was doomed Senator. Sadly, but certainly.

Salt Lake City, UT

I've looked at Bennett's proposal. It looks good on the surface. But it is unlikely it would have been passed as proposed, especially if it threatened insurance companies' profits even the slightest. After the various lobbies were through with it, it would have looked a lot like Obamacare. For-profit insurance must be removed from health care. That's the problem with Obamacare and that would have been the problem with Bennett's proposal once worked over by the congress.

Roland Kayser
Cottonwood Heights, UT

I liked Bennett/Wyden better than I like Obamacare. But Senator Bennett's party controlled the senate for 12 consecutive years and he was unable to convince his colleagues to pass it. So we had to move on to something different.

Thid Barker
Victor, ID

Do any of you who are defending Obamacare know that the vast majority of people who even bothered to sign up under Obamacare opted for Medicaid? And why not? Its 100% taxpayer funded with no deductibles, no co-pays and no premiums! Therefore it appears the goals and hopes of Obamacare are being defeated by Medicaid competing with Obamacare! Why didn't we just expand Medicaid in the first place and avoid all the billions of taxpayer dollars wasted on Obamacare? Obamacare is the dumbest excuse for a solution to a problem ever forced on America. Period!

Far East USA, SC


I am not defending Obamacare. But I KNOW that we the pre Obamacare status quo was not an option.

Anyone can complain. That has been the GOP playbook for years now.

What are your suggestions?

American Fork, UT

People are scouring the wrecking yards and farm sales the world over to find parts to restore that old pontiac; those were the good old days.

Open Minded Mormon
Everett, 00

The result is a health care version of a 1955 Pontiac. It’s large, expensive to own and maintain, and burdened with features many customers don’t want.


It let's face it,
it SURE beats walking, now - don't it!

Open Minded Mormon
Everett, 00

The result is a health care version of a 1955 Pontiac. It’s large, expensive to own and maintain, and burdened with features many customers don’t want.


and one other thing --

We can always trade it in and upgrade later for one of those better built Socialist German or Japanese model Single Payer options later!

2 bits
Cottonwood Heights, UT

I'm just a little tired of politicians who think their job is "Marketing Department" at a big corporation (USA Corp). And we little people are just lab rats, or consumers to be dealt with and fleeced to keep the corporation going. Like it's their job to figure out what we want... and then give it to us (to keep us fat and happy). It's their job to LEAD. Not to just follow the polls.

Sometimes leaders have to do what's tough (not what's popular). We don't have any leaders in Washington anymore who are willing to do what's "right", even if it's unpopular. Because all they care about is keeping the people happy and giving them what their demographic analysis, focus groups, and Gallop polling indicates the masses want (so they can keep getting elected).

That's not how you lead.

Somebody needs to figure out what the right thing to do is and do it... not what polls the best, or gets them the most votes in the next election.

Phoenix, AZ

"The fines they will pay if they do so — assuming that such fines can actually be collected — are less than the premiums they would have paid."

That won't last long. Obama sucked everyone in with the promise of $2,500 annual savings in health insurance premiums... with a small penalty (tax, per the Supreme Court) for failure to sign up. Well, over the next years going forward, that penalty will increase so that folks will go screaming to sign up. And if they don't sign up or voluntarily pay the penalty, the IRS will be on their doorstep to collect.

Invisible Hand
Provo, UT

@JoeBlow: You asked for suggestions: give everyone a tax credit to buy health coverage in a free market. And by free market, I mean one without restrictions and mandates on what they cover, what it costs, how much money they can make, or where it can be sold (including across state lines). Those who want more expensive plans can dig into their own pockets and fund it. As Mr. Bennett implied, the collective wisdom of markets is far better than anything that a bureaucrat or politician could design.

Phoenix, AZ

"The truth is Japan, Australia and Sweden to name a few already have and love their Obamacare like healthcare."

They had no choice... nor does America, now.

"They spend half as much as we do and get better healthcare."

They live much healthier lives than Americans. And if they did need good care quick, they usually end up in the US where there were no lines to queue up in for help.

Obamacare is a disaster in the making, strung together, from the looks of it so far, by a bunch of amateurs.

Salt Lake City, UT

There was never any doubt that having the insurance and drug companies draft significant portions of the law was going to result in a ungainly and awkward parts of the Affordable Health Care Act. The ACA is, at best, poorly conceived, poorly written, poorly implemented.

That said, we see before us a healthcare system better than what was there 2 years ago. It's a mangled step forward, but a step forward nevertheless.

Eureka, UT

The first time National Health Care was proposed was by the Democrat Harry Truman. The Republicans killed it then, and did everything they could when they were in charge to ignore the issues. If the USA would have put a law in place then, they would have been among the first in the world to have done so. But, since they didn't and as the world did put in place health care plans, the USA feel behind in both health services and in controlling health care costs. Just like in the 50's, the cars were big and expensive and eventually replaced with less expensive foreign models. It seems the problem today is that the GOP hasn't recognized the problem just like the car companies in the 50's and in an effort to catch up with the world the democrats filled in a vacuum. Can you imagine if in the 50's there would have been people who said since the cars are so big and expensive that we should go back to the horse and carriage.

Far East USA, SC


That all sounds well and good. I would be happy to see insurance across state lines since that seems to be the main GOP health care solution.

But, lets look at the bigger issue. Are mandates or the state line issue what causes the average, non c section childbirth to cost $30,000?

Do we really want to let companies drop you for a pre existing condition?

Is this what you honestly think causes a routine outpatient procedure to cost $25,000+?

Have you ever tried to control your medical costs? Shop around for the best price?

Do you sincerely think that losing medicare payment caps would save money?

Rather than just stick with the party line, you should really think about it. Business is there to make money. When they streamline, it is to improve the bottom line, not to save the consumer money.

We need to all drop the party "wisdom" and actually deal with the problem.

I am a huge fan of capitalism, but the profits in health care are growing significantly and are on track to bankrupt this country.

Salt Lake City, UT

"where there were no lines to queue up in for help."

I had to wait 6 weeks to see a specialist for my health issue a couple years ago.

Tyler D
Meridian, ID

@Roland Kayser – “I liked Bennett/Wyden better than I like Obamacare.”

Me too… it was market oriented while recognizing (and addressing) the inherent market failures in the healthcare industry. It also had the virtue of decoupling health insurance from employment – a mistake most countries recognized decades ago (i.e., no silly Hobby Lobby lawsuits had we gone in this direction).

The Senate lost a good Senator when Bob was tossed out in favor of ideology. He was the type of representative a Republic needs (since we all have day jobs and cannot possibly be thoroughly educated on all the issues) – a pragmatic leader who focused on results and could play nice with others.

By their ideologically driven inaction and refusal to participate in the process, the Republicans are as responsible for Obamacare as anyone. We could have had a Lexus but instead we got a Ford… whether it will turn out to be a Mustang or a Pinto remains to be seen.

Salt Lake City, UT

"They live much healthier lives than Americans. "

Actually... a study found that smokers and the obese really aren't any more expensive to the healthcare system. Why? They die earlier (not needing health insurance from ages 70-90 because you died at 69 certainly is cheaper) from things that tend to kill you faster on average, so it roughly evens things out.

Comparing similar treatments/details from country to country yields radically different results/pricing. My one afternoon hospital stay cost around 1,500 just for the room/bed (the entire bill was 18,000 but thankfully I had insurance). My dad's hospital room part of his bill in Germany was roughly 1,000... for an entire week. It was barely more expensive than a hotel. His surgery itself was half the cost of what the same surgery would be in the US.

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