Medicare For All… It Just Makes Sense

Medicare is a system that has been in place for 50+ years. Its approval rating is well above any competition and it keeps the costs of healthcare down. Paperwork which drowns the private sector insurance is very well managed to less than half in Medicare.

mountain-660023_640.jpgSo, why should we be experimenting with other often radical solutions to our healthcare network in the U.S.?  I will admit that Obamacare was far from perfect. For one thing, it depends on the whim of private for-profit carriers. They say privatizing healthcare will spur competition and therefore reduce costs but that just isn’t happening.  TrumpCare, which is at least dead for now, wasn’t any better and seemed to be skewed towards giving the wealthy more tax breaks and abandoning care for millions now covered under Medicaid.

Why should we experiment with very risky systems when we have a time-proven system that does very well? It just makes sense to make Medicare for all of us. Can even Medicare be improved, of course it can. There is too much fraud that could fairly easily be prevented if we just allowed it to happen.  Having a law that prevents Medicare from getting discounts in the prescription drug market defies common sense.

Let’s expand a proven track winner and make it for all of us. We could then join the rest of the world in providing healthcare for all our citizens as a right, not a privilege of only those who can afford it. It would also relieve that burden from our business so that they can more effectively compete with foreign competitors. It just makes sense.

I don’t know what it will take to get all those in the beltway loony bin to understand this idea? But whatever it takes we need to work hard to make it happen. The sooner, the better.

It just makes sense…

 

Week 12 Inside The Loony Bin – Healthcare & The Supreme Court

Banner- Looney Bin

 This will be my first “official” report looking at the Washington DC loony bin from a drone level view. Here goes:

Healthcare – The GOP continues to try to formulate a health care plan that will abolish Obamacare. They have had 7 years to put this together but like usual in the loony bin, they wait until the last minute. It seems they can’t agree within their own party what it should look like. The RadCons don’t want anything, while others don’t want to cause anyone to lose coverage. I guess they are having a vote sometime today and I’m willing to bet that something will come out of the House sooner or later but it stands zero chance of getting through the Senate. It will be interesting to see what that body eventually has to say on this issue.

One major problem with all of this is that the conservatives don’t seem to know the difference between health insurance and healthcare. They think as long as they can convince the insurance carriers to offer a plan to everyone, it doesn’t really matter at what cost, then everything is solved. Of course, those of us outside the loony bin who happen to get sick once in a while know that the insurance stuff is just the tip of the iceberg. Getting costs under control is the major issue that they are totally ignoring. Another problem with the GOP is that they just don’t seem to like poor people. So, their first primary attack on Obamacare is to drastically reduce Medicaid funding. They just don’t seem to have any idea of what “Brother’s Keeper” means to the rest of us.

The only viable option to solve these issues is a single-payer system as the rest of the world already have. Over half of us are already there via Medicare and Medicaid so it is not as if that solution is foreign to us. In Canada, which has had a single-payer system for decades, healthcare costs per citizen is less than half ours. Maybe it is time to talk to them about how they accomplished that. But the loony bin would never admit they don’t know everything so that simply won’t happen.

Another interesting side point that is happening this week is that California is putting a single-payer system in place. I have to keep and eye on that in the coming months.

Supreme Court –  I see the loony bin folks are finally getting around to filling that year long vacancy on the Supreme Court.  Of course, the Democrats are playing the “sour grapes” card and that, of course, is about posturing which is the main business of all those folks. It seems inevitable that the current nominee will get the job but the opposition party has to strut around thumping their chests before that happens.

Oval Office Progress Report – Here we are eight weeks into this new administration and I can’t really see anything that they have accomplished? They try to ban people from coming into our country but the federal courts keep declaring their attempts unconstitutional. But the main problem is they just seem to run off on so many nonsense issues as to stifle any possibility of real progress. But then again, maybe that is a good thing. As my hero, Will Rogers said the best thing congress can do for the country is to take a three-week vacation and that is especially true for this current executive branch. Let’s give all those yahoos 50 weeks of paid vacation a year. That would solve a lot of problems….

 

A Drone Level View

Banner- Looney Bin

The new RJsCorner will include politics as it has in the past but instead of getting bogged down in the day-to-day insanity I will be taking a higher level view. A good older analogy for this is looking at the forest instead of individual trees. But a more modern example is taking a drone level view.

A major problem with our political, especially federal processes, is that most of our elected officials seem to think that what they do is of primary importance in everyone’s daily lives when in reality it is mainly about the contractors, lobbyists, and the corporate media as opposed to the priorities of the general population. The term “Inside the Beltway” is an apt title for this phenomenon. Yes, we normal folks are affected now and then by what they do but we are most part primarily focused on our daily lives.

We should all celebrate the fact that government processes move at a snail’s pace so little radical change is possible in the short term, even a presidential term. An example of this is the current drive to get rid of Obamacare and replace it with a Republican version. Given the diversity of opinion on this topic, it is not likely that any extreme view will be adopted. Instead, they will continue to be kicked down the road until it becomes much more urgent and on more people’s radar screens.

It is my intention to continue to cover the political process but only via a weekly post within the subcategory “Inside the Beltway Loony Bin”.  I will try not to get bogged down on who said what to whom as I have in the past. Instead, I will be taking, even more so than in the past, a Will Rogers view of the topic at hand. That is, finding the humor and irony instead of getting upset about what is happening. One of Will’s most famous quotes is “All politics is applesauce”. He never went on to explain that exactly but most likely it means that they start with a fresh product but then pulverize it to something completely unrecognizable. In my day we said that baloney. I don’t know what the kids call it today, but it is important to recognize it when it happens.

So, my goal in this category is not to get upset about the insanity inside the beltway; to take a higher level view. If you have a different idea about all of this I would love to hear it.

 

America Needs More Congressmen..

Banner- Looney Bin I am feeling better today so I thought I would tackle a “Crayon Marks” post about one of your favorite topics, Congress.. 🙂 

America needs more congressmen. Hundreds and hundreds more congressmen.  I love my friends over at The Week for regularly looking over the sides of our nationalist boxes for new solutions and this is one of them a few weeks ago.  Gerrymandering has skewed the representation of our country so that it is no longer about who gets the majority of votes and that takes power away from the people. It seems without the court skewing the vote will never get solved so we need to look at other solutions.

The first thing you must realize is that everything that happens inside the Beltway Loony Bin is about posturing. It’s primarily about getting and holding power for as long as possible and getting re-elected. So, how do you reduce the power struggles?  Right now we have one representative for every 700,000 people. That’s not mandated by the constitution or anything so we can change it. What would happen if we reduced that to 50,000? Crazy you might say but hear me out.

That would result in about 6,000 representatives in DC. Of course, we couldn’t put all of them in a room at the same time so many would have to telecommute. But they go home at least three days a week now anyway so that is not much of a change. That alone will keep the posturing to a minimum. Secondly, it would also be nearly impossible to draw up all those crazy maps that they make for who has the privilege of voting for them. With only 50,000 citizens keeping an eye on a representative it would allow us to see just what they are really doing for us and not for those other folks.

Let’s go one step further and make a “virtual” House of Representatives instead of a brick and mortar one. Amazon has shown that there is vast efficiency in that process and that is exactly what our government needs, efficiency.  I know I haven’t worked out all the details yet, my brain is still a little fuzzy, but this idea could have some interesting consequences.

What do you think??