This could all be resolved if employee benefits weren't the main source of
health care in this country. Allow the creation of a single payer system, let
people opt in and watch the stampede. I get a kick out of my older relatives
who rail against "government" health care, but ran as fast as they could
to get their Medicare.Here's the thing. Pay continues to
decline and the cost of medical care skyrockets disproportionately. We are in
danger of being enslaved by health care. Many are there already. Insurance should have been the answer, but there is no true shared risk any
more. It's just another business that works to maximize profit. Once
again, we could solve these problems if America would come together. If all the
hot air that is expressed in venom could be redirected towards answers, what a
powerful nation we could become.America, stop worshiping the golden
calf and start seeing the value in our brothers and sisters.
No matter what side you favor, I just don’t see how the SC rules in favor
of Hobby Lobby without overturning decades of precedent including Scalia’s
majority opinion in Employment Division v Smith.But assuming the
five conservatives on the Court desperately want to side with Hobby Lobby, it
will be entertaining to watch the twisted logic and mental gymnastics they
employ to do so.
Mom's got it right...the burden of this choice shouldn't even exist
for employers. Nor should the right. Health care is for people, not employers.
Article: "Starr agreed that, for example, the law protects a kosher butcher
serving observant Jews or a halal meat market catering to Muslims, from being
mandated to sell pork products, which are prohibited in both religions."A more apropos example would be the kosher/halal butcher being required
to pay into a meat industry cooperative marketing pool (along with all other
butchers), some small portion of which might be used to promote pork
consumption. The butcher is not required to sell or consume pork himself, nor
advertise pork himself. Nor would the ad pool necessarily ever produce an ad
promoting pork. But there is a possibility the kosher/halal butcher might
indirectly through the pooled, commingled payments of all butchers, support the
promotion of pork. No one is forcing Hobby Lobby or its employees to use
contraceptives, only to pay into pooled insurance that an employee might use for
contraception.If such indirect financial connection to an activity
perceived as against one's religion is granted legal protection by the
court, I can't wait to see the Quakers and other pacifists of faith lining
up to withhold the portion of their federal income taxes that supports the
How about the right of an individual to choose his/her health care on an open
market, as compared to a single payer system? All of you that trump choice
surely can understand why others want "choice" in health care, or do
you? Does "choice" only exist under the arm of the all powerful
Government? Where is the liberty in that? I'm all ears?
I think we should have a single payer system. But so far no one has
volunteered. The closest it has come is that the government should borrow a lot
of money to be paid in the future by some single payer or group of single payers
who have yet to be determined or even born for that matter.
bandersen said:"How about the right of an individual to choose his/her
health care on an open market"Pretty much what we had before,
wasn't it?How was that working? My premiums we're going up 10%
to 20% a year.Crossing state lines would do nothing except create a bigger
monopoly.Tort reform, except for those worth more (on paper at the bank)
they could sue for more, always found it's way into republican tort
bills.Single payer system would be best.
@ bandersenYou're making the assumption that you value the free
market more than those in favor of the single payer system. We, as a society,
have designated certain products as necessary utilities, enabling high
regulation and often monopolistic features to accommodate low requirements for
access. Examples include electricity, natural gas, and telephone services. When
there exists a product as universal as heating or lighting one's home, the
best option is to compile resources and allocate fairly absent the primary focus
of profitability. If you are pushing to open up all utility services to
competition and the free market, that's a different conversation
altogether. If not, then simply think of single-payer advocates as pushing to
include access to health resources as a common good with little to no
restrictions like income level, existing health condition, and age.
Bandersen: Yes, choice can exist and certainly does exist under the so called
all powerful government. I know because I personally benefit from such a scheme.
You can choose whether or not you want to go to the doctor, to which doctor you
wish to go, what treatment to seek, and whether to ignore the process entirely.
Choices you might lose are ones you probably should not have to begin with, such
as the choice of whether or not you should seek treatment based on whether you
can afford it, whether or not to participate in the health care system when
you're young and invincible even though you may well need it then and
certainly should support it throughout your life because you WILL need it at
some time, and whether or not to be an uninsured burden in the emergency room
because you thought you would never need insurance. We should be allowed the
choice of opting out of the scheme entirely if and only if people stop getting
sick and dying.
Happy Valley Heretic: Not even close! I hold Republican efforts in equal
disdain as Democratic efforts. Unfortunately, as long as people look to
"Republican" or "Democratic" answers, the charade, subterfuge,
and spiraling costs will continue! Fortunately, there are a few that can't
be fooled by the charade and want to return Health Care and every other
individual choice back to where it has always belonged, with the individual.
The only reason why Democratic and Republican followers don't even
understand the alternative is they are stuck in the mindset created by their
Democratic and Republican Wizards behind the curtains. How does one change
something when there isn't a choice? Irony is the difference between
reality and the appearance of reality. Democrat and Republican followers see no
irony, which becomes dramatic irony for those watching the show!
The problem with "single-payer" (government)healthcare is that it would
disincentivise the healthcare delivery system.How would Dr.'s
be paid? On a "per visit" basis? If so, what would stop a Dr. from
seeing 50 patients per hr, with (obviously)very little time spent with each
patient, yet being paid for ALL of them?Conversely, what would stop
the government from putting a myriad of "extra" Dr.'s in hospitals
based on the residents' political leanings?How much MORE of our
paycheck are we willing to give up (for those of us still working)to provide for
not only our own, but everyone who couldn't afford healthcare? 25%, 35%,
50%?The whole issue of medical ethics comes into question also. Do
we REALLY want to leave it to the government panelists to determine who gets
treatment, and the extent of that treatment? The same for medications. The
same for medicines that are prohibitively expensive. Would the pharmaceutical
industry STILL produce medicines that nobody can afford, or would the government
just decide to pay for "any and all"?
@bandersen – “Fortunately, there are a few that can't be fooled
by the charade and want to return Health Care and every other individual choice
back to where it has always belonged, with the individual.”For
the sake of argument, let’s assume that the market for healthcare is
similar to the market for toasters, and will respond to all the market forces
affected by individual choice. [By the way, it’s not the same and
won’t respond the way you think, but I’ll ignore that for now.]If the laissez faire, free market approach is the best option available
for creating the world’s best healthcare system, surely we can find one
country in the developed world that has this model. If you can show
us this model in the real world – since we should all value evidence over
ideology – I will be happy to consider your view.If I’m
wrong in believing healthcare is unique and will not respond to market forces to
produce the outcomes we desire (low cost, high quality, high access), then I
don’t want to be wrong any longer than necessary.
First of all, this claim of paying for something that actually reduces premiums
is absurd; contraception is part of an aggregate which reduces risk in providing
insurance.Second, ACA, should have been written in such a way that
simply stated all health insurance companies must provide this coverage; leaving
a no-choice to anyone providing health insurance. Mandating the coverage to be
"universally provided" instead of "universally obtained" opened
the door for this argument.End this abuse of process and rewrite the
language of the law...
I confess that to me, there are few good options. Medical costs seem to be
driven by the desire to get as much money as the traffic will bear: "your
money or your life". Medical procedures do not come with a warranty; the
only recourse to preventable mistakes is costly litigation. Medical/health
insurance contributes nothing to medical care, only to the payment of medical
care; it adds to the total cost, because wages for insurance personnel have to
be paid (the upper echelons are highly paid), facilities and other operating
costs incurred.If stock is involved, investors expect, and rightly so, a return
on their investment. Any solution will have to address these areas. Compromises
will have to be made, somewhere. Will anyone be willing to make changes?
To: Midwest MomSoldiers Grove, WIThank you for your true and
wise comment!You are totally correct, when you say "We are in
danger of being enslaved by health care".We need to wake up and
recognize that the American Healthcare System (including insurance companies)
are only about making profits now. We love our Doctors and Hospitals, but it is
time for us to help them understand that they can't continue to break the
financial back of families and communities with the current system they provide.
A single payer system would be a major step in the right direction.
It just shows how a little negotiation in Congress could make much of this go
away. Stop forcing Religious institutions and privately held companies to
provide those controversial birth control drugs and this particular problem goes
away. People still get their birth control provided by the government elsewhere
or they buy it themselves at a pretty moderate cost.I would have
also liked to see the law reffered to in this article apply to businesses being
allowed to "not Participate" in gay marriages if they have a sincere
religious object to doing so. Not many cases actually come up for this but it
would be a good support of religious liberty.
Fitness Freak - You think a single-payer would "disincentivise the
healthcare delivery system?"Well yes and no.It would
incentivise providers to deliver quality care that meets minimum criteria.And that's a good thing.But it would disincentivise
health-care providers from over-charging patients and providing shoddy health
care.That's a good thing too.
Roberts, Kennedy and maybe even Scalia, will find it difficult to give corporate
employers a religious exemption. Since I was surprised Roberts saved ACA, I
don't see how Hobby Lobby wins this one but stranger things have happened.
"But the ACA mandates four other forms, including the "morning after
pill," that the Greens contend abort the fetus, which conflicts with their
religious beliefs."Except that the morning after pill
doesn't abort anything. It prevents the ovary from releasing an egg. If
fertilization has already occurred this pill won't change that. The extreme
right loves to wave its ignorance of science around like a banner. They
understand little of it and run with false assumptions. It gets old.
Single Payer advocates: You are all looking for a home run, instead of hitting
singles! You want Babe Ruth to come to the bat instead of stepping up to the
plate yourself! Those trees are so big you can't see the forest. What
happens when 300 million people get involved in their health care decisions?
350 million people making their own decisions puts them in charge instead the of
the doctors, hospitals, and pharmaceutical companies. Choice empowers people
and puts them in charge of their financial decisions, not a doctor or hospital.
Check out Keith Smith in Oklahoma for someone that runs his clinic without
government intrusion and has reduced the costs dramatically. Just ask yourself
one question: Do you know what the cost was of the last operation, procedure,
etc. that you had a doctor perform? Of course you don't because you treat
Health Care like a fitness club. Get involved and get government out of the
way! Multiply the 350 million people making decisions about their healthcare and
those billions of little decisions would make our system the best in the world
at the lowest cost.
There is no such thing as a "single payer system". As defined, a
single-payer system means " a system in which the government, rather than
private insurers, pays for all health care costs."Excuse me, but who is the
government? And where do they get their money? They aren't a magical fairy
that can pull resources out of thin air and grant them to poor people. They take
with poor discrimination, primarily from the middle class, and give to people
they incentivize to stay poor.
I can go to the local emergency room and get FREE care when my children catch
the flu. I only wish the wait times could be reduced or eliminated. That is
the ONLY thing that needs fixing. Why fix something that in reality,
Oh, good grief people! Single payer means that everyone pays into a
single pot. It's what insurance should have been. Remove the profit and
have it go directly towards care. This can be accomplished in so many ways.
Have a co-pay to help limit those who love white coats. Allow some alternative
medicine in, which is frequently cheaper, too. Disallow pharma lobbyists from
jacking up the prices here at home. And let's add funding for those orphan
illnesses that don't have enough victims to make helping them profitable.
Why are Americans so married to the idea that they get the best by
entrusting their health to a profit-motivated industry? We are a wealthy
nation, collectively. Not one of our brothers or sisters should suffer
financial ruin just because they were unfortunate enough to also suffer disease
or injury. Fear over insurance blunts creativity. One family I
know was ruined because their insurance dropped them, due to mom's long
cancer battle. After she died, no one would cover their family. Affects their
ability to find work, live their dreams. Hit twice. Health care is the moral
test of our time.
Having lived for 17 years of my life in countries with socialized medicine
programs, I can say this: the well-patient care is outstanding but it has one
side effect. Everyone with a runny nose runs to the clinic. In some countries
people carry thermometers instead a pen so they know when to run. On other
hand, sick people die. This dramatically cuts the cost of health care. My
Canadian buddy LOVED Health Canada until his mother died from highly treatable
breast cancer. The statistics always show that 2/3s of the people in the UK and
Canada are VERY satisfied with their national health care. Well, of course!
Guess who they are. The elephant in the room that nobody wants to talk about is
that we are closing in on 50% of our health care dollars keeping people alive
the last 6 months of their life inj the US. If it is YOU, do you want the
choice to spend YOUR money to get those extra six months? Or should the
"death panel" - err "healthcare allocation panel" decide. Just
sayin' . . .
People should understand when they are no-longer productive or a societal
contributor, they should not expect FREE health care. Compassionate palliative
health care for pain as they transition, but no more. Otherwise those 60 and
older should pay out of pocket for their own health care.
Bandersen: Yes, I do know how much the least operation I had cost, even though
it was paid for by a single payer system and didn't cost me anything except
some parking charges, and incidental costs I didn't expense to my employer
on the way to Calgary. As for what happens when you put 300 (350?) million
people in charge of their health care decisions? A lot of bad decision making.
Few of us are equipped to make those sorts of decisions and risk analysis at the
best of times, let alone when we urgently need health care. The choices being
made by people shouldn't be financial ones. They should be about health
care, and their regimen of treatment. A single payer system delivers this
nicely, because the government, hospital and pharmaceutical industry can be made
entirely inconsequential to the patient treatment decision making process. They
are merely suppliers and facilitators.
The gist of the Hobby Lobby argument is that by paying premiums into an
insurance plan that funds certain contraceptives, they are facilitating
abortions. How is this indirect causality any different from paying taxes to
the US government that provides those same contraceptives through the VA and
family service agencies? How is it different from paying money to a Chinese
supplier, when the supplier's taxes support China's one-child policy
(never mind its likely oppressive labor practices)? Hobby Lobby seems to have
taken a selective and inconsistent approach in targeting its outrage.
Could someone please explain to me how exactly the "religion" of a
corporation is determined? Is it the religion of a majority of the
stockholders? Is it the religion of the board of directors? Of the executive
leadership/management? I suspect that for a private corporation like Hobby
Lobby, these are all essentially the same people, but what about publicly traded
corporations? What is the religion of Exxon-Mobil or Microsoft? Does a
majority of shareholders have to have the same religion, or will a simple
plurality do? What about conglomerates-- does the religion of the parent
company rule or the subsidiary? Say a successful Utah tech startup
(predominantly LDS) is acquired by Google. Is it still LDS? Will they serve
cappuccinos or Postum at the annual meeting? Who decides? I own stock in
several corporations, but in all the proxy voting and shareholder materials I
have received over the years, I have never been asked for my religious views.
How, then, do I know what faith the companies I invest in subscribe to?
Hutterite: I suggest some study about how the free market actually operates,
rather than trying to make sense of something by integrating a failed system
like Socialized medicine with free market economics! They don't mix.
Making healthcare similar to the interstate highway system is like wanting to
apply the principles of family life to the mafia! People complain about the
hospitals, doctors, and the pharmaceutical industry, but don't understand
that it is the lack of free market economics that created it and the corruption
of public officials that keeps it flourishing! As for the truly indigent,
taking care of their needs either through charity or government help is so
minuscule to hardly be mentioned, but with which the progressives trot out for
the reason to destroy it for 99 percent of the rest. Government is the worst
form of "charity" devised by man. Is it any wonder that both the
Democratic and Republican parties are disappearing to an independent and
Libertarian block that knows better! Government is not the solution, no matter
how charitable one wants to be with other peoples money! It is an absolute lie
of epic proportions!
1. Why in the world should it be the legal obligation of a business to provide
health care for its employees? It should be a benefit like lots of other
benefits that are worked out by the employer and the employees. Some people feel
an overwhelming compulsion to control every facet of everyone's life. I
don't understand it but it's going to crush our economy. 2. Just today I talked to a friend on Medicare. Medicare has approved a brace
for her back but her Obamacare approved health care insurance company keeps
delaying (two months now). She got better service before Obamacare. The theory
is just keep putting old people off and eventually the old will painfully die
off from neglect and it will save Social Security a lot of money.3.
My daughter's family is paying double what they paid for insurance before
Obamacare and has a much higher deductible under Obamacare. They're not
happy about it. I don't blame them.4. In the next election this
should be the theme all over the nation: "Don't vote for anyone that
voted for Obamacare."
If you want a cold, impersonal, one size fits all monopoly controlling your
health care, sure, go for single payer.If you want a system that
works then do the following:1. Require that employers cash their employees
out of their health care system. (Give them a raise equal to what they spend on
health care.)2. Move to high deductible insurance. The rest can be paid
for on a fee for service basis.3. Create real medical savings accounts.4. Require all health care providers to charge everyone the same price and
post their rates so you can shop around.5. Do something about emergency
room fraud. No more gaming the system.6. Charge people more for behavior
related coverage. If you smoke, over eat, have multiple sex partners, you pay
more.Why? People spend their own money a lot differently
than they spend other people's money. There is an army of paper
pushers at both insurance companies and medical clinics because everything now
goes through insurance. Get rid of them.You would find that insurance
rates would drop to about $250 per month for a family of four and they would
have the money to pay their deductibles.
Since all of us require proper nutrition and exercise to keep us healthy and
reduce health costs the ACA needs to be amended to ensure that it happens. All employers must now provide a minimum of two nutritious meals to all
employees and their families. They must also provide every employee and his/her
family with a health club membership so that they can obtain 2 hours of exercise
daily. To those of you that consider this to be ridiculous I would
remind you that this is basically the same as mandating that employers not only
provide health insurance but that it must cover specific items for all
employees. And just think of how much this will reduce doctor visits and
hospital stays by reducing obesity and the potential for diabetes as well as
Foolish Faith-people. You don't need a conscience when you have the federal
government to tell you what to think.
My question is does the employees of these company s want the options of the
birth control or not and do they have the same religious outlook as their
employer. I think the employees should get a vote in the matter since it effects
them the most not just the employers getting the say in the whole matter.
The U.S. Supreme Court recognized corporations have the same rights as a natural
person to enter contracts and to enforce contracts since Trustees of Dartmouth
College v. Woodward – 17 U.S. 518 (1819).Therefore, health
insurance is a contract, in this instance, between Hobby Lobby and an authorized
ACA provider. They have the legal right not to participate on grounds of
religious conviction. This administration is, once again, abusing their
authority by misinterpreting and manipulating the law -- as they did when
arguing Obamacare was a tax during court, contrary to their insistence it
wasn't before passage.In a broader sense, why should employers
be forced to purchase health insurance for their employees? Employees should
receive an honest day's pay for an honest day's work -- period. Health
coverage should be a personal choice, just as life insurance and auto insurance
are up to the individual.
Not so long ago thousands of men, women and children were in iron lungs fighting
for their life. Polio ravaged America and fear gripped the land. Measles killed
children, mumps caused sterility and rubella created terrible birth defects. All
these diseases were wiped out with vaccines. Now "religious" objections
are being raised in ever increasing numbers of America families against vaccines
due to misguided fears about autism and other alleged side effects of vaccines.
None of these side side effects have been proven scientifically. Herd immunity
is falling so that the small percentage of vaccinees who don't get a brisk
antibody response are at risk of contracting diseases that spread in the
population. Uptake of newer vaccines that can prevent cervical cancer in women
are pushed aside due to ignorance fear and "religious objections". How many will have to die, be deformed or crippled for life in the name of
so-called religion? The Supreme Court may strike a blow for what it considers
religious freedom while denying basic constitutional freedoms to everyone else.
It is hard to believe that is what our forefathers had in mind when they came to