The Worst Bill Ever

Discussion in 'Economics' started by Tom B, Nov 2, 2009.

  1. Tom B

    Tom B

    The Worst Bill Ever
    Epic new spending and taxes, pricier insurance, rationed care, dishonest accounting: The Pelosi health bill has it all.

    Speaker Nancy Pelosi has reportedly told fellow Democrats that she's prepared to lose seats in 2010 if that's what it takes to pass ObamaCare, and little wonder. The health bill she unwrapped last Thursday, which President Obama hailed as a "critical milestone," may well be the worst piece of post-New Deal legislation ever introduced.

    In a rational political world, this 1,990-page runaway train would have been derailed months ago. With spending and debt already at record peacetime levels, the bill creates a new and probably unrepealable middle-class entitlement that is designed to expand over time. Taxes will need to rise precipitously, even as ObamaCare so dramatically expands government control of health care that eventually all medicine will be rationed via politics.

    Yet at this point, Democrats have dumped any pretense of genuine bipartisan "reform" and moved into the realm of pure power politics as they race against the unpopularity of their own agenda. The goal is to ram through whatever income-redistribution scheme they can claim to be "universal coverage." The result will be destructive on every level—for the health-care system, for the country's fiscal condition, and ultimately for American freedom and prosperity.

    •The spending surge. The Congressional Budget Office figures the House program will cost $1.055 trillion over a decade, which while far above the $829 billion net cost that Mrs. Pelosi fed to credulous reporters is still a low-ball estimate. Most of the money goes into government-run "exchanges" where people earning between 150% and 400% of the poverty level—that is, up to about $96,000 for a family of four in 2016—could buy coverage at heavily subsidized rates, tied to income. The government would pay for 93% of insurance costs for a family making $42,000, 72% for another making $78,000, and so forth.

    At least at first, these benefits would be offered only to those whose employers don't provide insurance or work for small businesses with 100 or fewer workers. The taxpayer costs would be far higher if not for this "firewall"—which is sure to cave in when people see the deal their neighbors are getting on "free" health care. Mrs. Pelosi knows this, like everyone else in Washington.

    Even so, the House disguises hundreds of billions of dollars in additional costs with budget gimmicks. It "pays for" about six years of program with a decade of revenue, with the heaviest costs concentrated in the second five years. The House also pretends Medicare payments to doctors will be cut by 21.5% next year and deeper after that, "saving" about $250 billion. ObamaCare will be lucky to cost under $2 trillion over 10 years; it will grow more after that.

    • Expanding Medicaid, gutting private Medicare. All this is particularly reckless given the unfunded liabilities of Medicare—now north of $37 trillion over 75 years. Mrs. Pelosi wants to steal $426 billion from future Medicare spending to "pay for" universal coverage. While Medicare's price controls on doctors and hospitals are certain to be tightened, the only cut that is a sure thing in practice is gutting Medicare Advantage to the tune of $170 billion. Democrats loathe this program because it gives one of out five seniors private insurance options.

    As for Medicaid, the House will expand eligibility to everyone below 150% of the poverty level, meaning that some 15 million new people will be added to the rolls as private insurance gets crowded out at a cost of $425 billion. A decade from now more than a quarter of the population will be on a program originally intended for poor women, children and the disabled.

    Even though the House will assume 91% of the "matching rate" for this joint state-federal program—up from today's 57%—governors would still be forced to take on $34 billion in new burdens when budgets from Albany to Sacramento are in fiscal collapse. Washington's budget will collapse too, if anything like the House bill passes.

    • European levels of taxation. All told, the House favors $572 billion in new taxes, mostly by imposing a 5.4-percentage-point "surcharge" on joint filers earning over $1 million, $500,000 for singles. This tax will raise the top marginal rate to 45% in 2011 from 39.6% when the Bush tax cuts expire—not counting state income taxes and the phase-out of certain deductions and exemptions. The burden will mostly fall on the small businesses that have organized as Subchapter S or limited liability corporations, since the truly wealthy won't have any difficulty sheltering their incomes.

    This surtax could hit ever more earners because, like the alternative minimum tax, it isn't indexed for inflation. Yet it still won't be nearly enough. Even if Congress had confiscated 100% of the taxable income of people earning over $500,000 in the boom year of 2006, it would have only raised $1.3 trillion. When Democrats end up soaking the middle class, perhaps via the European-style value-added tax that Mrs. Pelosi has endorsed, they'll claim the deficits that they created made them do it.

    Under another new tax, businesses would have to surrender 8% of their payroll to government if they don't offer insurance or pay at least 72.5% of their workers' premiums, which eat into wages. Such "play or pay" taxes always become "pay or pay" and will rise over time, with severe consequences for hiring, job creation and ultimately growth. While the U.S. already has one of the highest corporate income tax rates in the world, Democrats are on the way to creating a high structural unemployment rate, much as Europe has done by expanding its welfare states.

    Meanwhile, a tax equal to 2.5% of adjusted gross income will also be imposed on some 18 million people who CBO expects still won't buy insurance in 2019. Democrats could make this penalty even higher, but that is politically unacceptable, or they could make the subsidies even higher, but that would expose the (already ludicrous) illusion that ObamaCare will reduce the deficit.

    • The insurance takeover. A new "health choices commissioner" will decide what counts as "essential benefits," which all insurers will have to offer as first-dollar coverage. Private insurers will also be told how much they are allowed to charge even as they will have to offer coverage at virtually the same price to anyone who applies, regardless of health status or medical history.

    The cost of insurance, naturally, will skyrocket. The insurer WellPoint estimates based on its own market data that some premiums in the individual market will triple under these new burdens. The same is likely to prove true for the employer-sponsored plans that provide private coverage to about 177 million people today. Over time, the new mandates will apply to all contracts, including for the large businesses currently given a safe harbor from bureaucratic tampering under a 1974 law called Erisa.

    The political incentive will always be for government to expand benefits and reduce cost-sharing, trampling any chance of giving individuals financial incentives to economize on care. Essentially, all insurers will become government contractors, in the business of fulfilling political demands: There will be no such thing as "private" health insurance.

    All of this is intentional, even if it isn't explicitly acknowledged. The overriding liberal ambition is to finish the work began decades ago as the Great Society of converting health care into a government responsibility. Mr. Obama's own Medicare actuaries estimate that the federal share of U.S. health dollars will quickly climb beyond 60% from 46% today. One reason Mrs. Pelosi has fought so ferociously against her own Blue Dog colleagues to include at least a scaled-back "public option" entitlement program is so that the architecture is in place for future Congresses to expand this share even further.

    As Congress's balance sheet drowns in trillions of dollars in new obligations, the political system will have no choice but to start making cost-minded decisions about which treatments patients are allowed to receive. Democrats can't regulate their way out of the reality that we live in a world of finite resources and infinite wants. Once health care is nationalized, or mostly nationalized, medical rationing is inevitable—especially for the innovative high-cost technologies and drugs that are the future of medicine.

    Mr. Obama rode into office on a wave of "change," but we doubt most voters realized that the change Democrats had in mind was making health care even more expensive and rigid than the status quo. Critics will say we are exaggerating, but we believe it is no stretch to say that Mrs. Pelosi's handiwork ranks with the Smoot-Hawley tariff and FDR's National Industrial Recovery Act as among the worst bills Congress has ever seriously contemplated.
  2. skylr33


    No problem, as this bill is dead in the Senate. Joe Lieberman has vowed to join a Republican filibuster, which means the Democrats will not get the 60 votes needed to break it. Plus, if the GOP/Conservatives take the Governor races in Virgina and New Jersey, then Obama won't get anything passed on healthcare.
    ***The revolt against Obama and the Democrats starts with election day on Nov. 3rd, then continues through 2010, and completes when this asshole dictator is voted out in 2012. :D
  3. the1


    This short essay, from a Constitutional Law scholar who has read the entire ObamaCare Bill, tells of how the new legislation tramples over the Constitution and the Bill of Rights. Please read this and send along to doubters and those still on the fence!
    Jim Azzola

    I know this is a heavy read, but it is better to be informed and fore armed than being run over.... WHAT CAN WE DO? (From Karl Huber in Portland, OR.)

    Michael Connelly ( ) is a Constitutional lawyer and has read the entire health care bill. He has some comments, notjust about the bill, but also about the effects on our Constitution it would have. It's a much broader picture than just health care "reform."

    All of you and those to whom you communicate had better sit up and pay attention; once this sort of thing happens, it will be irreversible.
    ___________________________________________________ Take a look and let me know what you think.

    This blog concentrates on my concerns as an attorney about the imminent and growing threats to our Constitution and our form of government. We have reason to be very afraid of what is happening.


    Well, I have done it! I have read the entire text of proposed House Bill 3200: The Affordable Health Care Choices Act of 2009. I studied it with particular emphasis from my area of expertise, constitutional law. I was frankly concerned that parts of the proposed law that were being discussed might be unconstitutional. What I found was far worse than what I had heard or expected.
    To begin with, much of what has been said about the bill and its implications is in fact true, despite what the Democrats and the media are saying. The bill does provide for rationing of health care, particularly where senior citizens and other classes of citizens are involved, free health care for illegal immigrants, free abortion services, and probably forced participation in abortions by members of the medical profession.

    The bill will also eventually force private insurance companies out of business and put everyone into a government-run system. All decisions about personal health care will ultimately be made by federal bureaucrats, and most of them will not be health care professionals. Hospital admissions, payments to physicians, and allocations of necessary medical devices will be strictly controlled.

    However, as scary as all of that is, it just scratches the surface. In fact, <b>I have concluded that this legislation really has no intention of providing affordable health care choices. Instead, it is a convenient cover for the most massive transfer of power to the Executive Branch of government that has ever occurred, or even been contemplated. If this law or a similar one is adopted, major portions of the Constitution of the United States will effectively have been destroyed. </b>

    The first thing to go will be the masterfully crafted balance of power between the Executive, Legislative, and Judicial branches of the U.S. Government. The Congress will be transferring to the Obama Administration authority in a number of different areas over the lives of the American people and the businesses they own. The irony is that the Congress doesn't have any authority to legislate in most of those areas to begin with. I defy anyone to read the text of the U.S. Constitution and find any authority granted to the members of Congress to regulate health care.

    (The paragraph below is really frightening.)

    <b>This legislation also provides for access by the appointees of the Obama administration of all of your personal health care information, your personal financial information, and the information of your employer, physician, and hospital. All of this is a direct violation of the specific provisions of the 4th Amendment to the Constitution protecting against unreasonable searches and seizures.</b> You can also forget about the right to privacy. That will have been legislated into oblivion regardless of what the 3rd and 4th Amendments may provide.

    <b>If you decide not to have health care insurance or if you have private insurance that is not deemed "acceptable" to the "Health Choices Administrator" appointed by Obama, there will be a tax imposed on you.</b> It is called a "tax" instead of a fine because of the intent to avoid application of the due process clause of the 5th Amendment. However, that doesn't work because since there is nothing in the law that allows you to contest or appeal the imposition of the tax, it is definitely depriving someone of property without due process of law.

    So, there are three of those pesky amendments that the far left hate so much out the original ten in the Bill of Rights that are effectively nullified by this law. It doesn't stop there, though. The 9th Amendment provides, "The enumeration in the Constitution of certain rights shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people." The 10th Amendment states, "The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are preserved to the States respectively, or to the people." <b>Under the provisions of this proposed bill, neither the people nor the states are going to have any rights or powers at all in many areas that once were theirs to control. </b>

    I could write many more pages about this legislation, but I think you get the idea. This is not about health care; it is about seizing power and limiting rights. Article 6 of the Constitution requires the members of both houses of Congress to "be bound by oath or affirmation" to support the Constitution. If I were a member of Congress, I would not be able to vote for this legislation or anything like it without feeling I was violating that sacred oath or affirmation. If I voted for it anyway, I would hope the American people would hold me accountable.

    For those who might doubt the nature of this threat, I suggest they consult the source. Here is a link to the Constitution:

    And another to the Bill of Rights: ;

    There you can see exactly what we are about to have taken from us, if Obama and the left wing Democrats have their way.

    Michael Connelly
    Retired attorney,
    Constitutional Law Instructor
    Carrollton, Texas

    Michael Connelly
    Author of "The Mortarmen"
    and "Riders in the Sky: The Ghosts and Legends of Philmont > Scout Ranch"
    I also teach law courses via the Internet through colleges and > universities worldwide. To find a college or university near you, go to > Education To Go's website at .
  4. Every other Western Democracy has Govt run healthcare and if we have it is is

    We are not smart enough to figure it out?

    We have to let our citizens die?

    We don't have none-healthcare personal sitting in judgement right now?


    Republicans have been willing to do that.

    Insurance company dealth panels exist NOW.

    The bill won't be perfect, but I have paid over 150K to health insurance companies in my lifetime and only gotten 20K worth of care at most.
    If we had a govt plan at least I would have a shot at getting back most of what I have put in, rather than loosing it the moment that I got laid off and could not pay the COBRA.
  5. Is it just me, or do others have this same sense...

    If now were Revolutionary War times, patriot leaders would be banding together and going to WAR... against what is now our power-hungry Democrat Party/Obama oligarchy.

    The power the Democrats and Executive Branch seeks via this bill is no less oppressive than King George III and Britain in 1776. :mad: :mad:
  6. It is just you and a third of the population with special interest, greed and fears. Perhaps you have interests in insurance companies and health providers. Perhaps you are a conservative that just don't want the working poor to have any kind of alternative health care. Perhaps you are just political and don't wish to see Obama and the Democrats succeed.

    One third of the American revolutionary war leaders were after all fighting the British for the rights to keep their slaves and plantations.
  7. the1


    I agree with you that it's a sorry state for so many people to go without health care but this bill goes well beyond providing care for those who don't have it. It's not about providing health care at all. It's about destroying your God given rights as a human being. If this bill passes in its current state it will destroy the bill of rights.

  8. Wrong on all points except not wanting Obama to succeed.

    If you can't see what Obama is and is doing, perhaps you DESERVE your enslavement... should he succeed.
  9. I gotta agree with the degenerates who don't want the bill to pass and Obama to fail. These people can't afford healthcare in the first place so why should I have my taxdollar used keep these things alive.

    It's time to evolve and let the weak die.
  10. (You Gotta) Fight For Your Right (To Party)!!
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    #10     Nov 2, 2009