Skip to main content

View Diary: Medicare: What can we do about it? (314 comments)

Comment Preferences

  •  dunno what that means (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Catte Nappe, SoCalSal

    "Are you fluffing for Cat Food Commission Super Congress cuts? "

    what does that mean?

    I am advocating for ignoring the bumper sticker idiocy of "don't touch Medicare" when it clearly needs to be addressed (see last week's post as well.) I am advocating strengthening the system by understanding where the costs are and are going to be. I prefer single payer. But the voters aren't there. so now what? Implement ACA, look at overall cost control and look at Armando's point as to when to try and implelemt.

    "Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies." - Groucho Marx

    by Greg Dworkin on Sun Aug 21, 2011 at 11:27:46 AM PDT

    [ Parent ]

    •  What is your battle cry? (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      janinsanfran

      Is it "do nothing but wait" to see what emerges from the super congress?  To me, "Don't touch Medicare" seems much more effective to defend what we have.  Sometimes the perfect is really the enemy of the good as POTUS will tell you.
      Why not push for SP when it would "contain costs" better than that ACA?  I fail to find any wisdom putting out anything to reinforce these austerity clowns who are not in any way really sincere about the deficit anyway.
      As the Democratic Party is being steered down Austerity Alley, it is leaving me behind.  I'll stick with that "bumper sticker idiocy" because I'm enrolled in it now and can see no good from these clowns messing with it.  That WSJ screed that Kerry, Murray, and Baucus put up shows what they are up to.

      •  it is unfortunate that you really haven't (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Catte Nappe, SoCalSal

        read the posts.

        You have to touch Medicare because the baby boomer aging means the current rate of expenses is unsustainable. Not touching it isn't an option becasue it won't be there for people if you don't touch it.

        There are built in cost controls to ACA so support it. Do not cut them in supercongress, minicongress, alternate congress or any other congress. The cost controls are real... see the post. It's a big deal to have them.

        You can't have single payer right now. There is a zero chance for it passing Congress, as in zero, zilch, nada, none. It would be better to have it but we don't have it. So, we need to look at alternatives. Implement ACA, and work at state level to show single payer is better. get as close as you can. Do it in VT, CA and wherever you have a D governor.

        The above are some of the answers. None of them are "fluffing".

        "Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies." - Groucho Marx

        by Greg Dworkin on Sun Aug 21, 2011 at 11:52:14 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  And the Super Congress? (0+ / 0-)

          What action do you advocate to deal with the threat of that?  Ignore it?  Wait and see?  Just asking!  What if the game is rigged?  

          •  if the game is rigged we all die (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            SoCalSal, Catte Nappe

            [actually, we all die anyway. See end of care discussion.]

            What I want is for the Democratic members of supercongress is to defend entitlements by understanding and strengthening them. and I would love it if we could do the "understanding" part better.

            And i would also like the suggested cost controls implemented that I had in my last post.

            If we cannot get a good deal we should not accept the bargain, but we should also understand that there are deals we can make.

            "Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies." - Groucho Marx

            by Greg Dworkin on Sun Aug 21, 2011 at 12:23:42 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Team O has a Great Record (0+ / 0-)

              Making deals....  

              •  not what this post is about (0+ / 0-)

                but since you mention it, nancy pelosi's folks are our representatives in this game.

                "Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies." - Groucho Marx

                by Greg Dworkin on Sun Aug 21, 2011 at 12:35:46 PM PDT

                [ Parent ]

                •  Austerity Pep Squad (0+ / 0-)

                  Digby sez:

                   

                   Warner told the group Wednesday that “$2.2 trillion is not enough” deficit reduction and warned that any new plan will likely include both more taxes and higher fees for services like the Tricare military health care plan.

                      “The truth is that you will see some increase in some of the Tricare co-payments,” he said, according to the Virginian-Pilot. The cost of health care “is the fastest-growing part of the defense budget. … I know some of you don’t want to hear that … but everything has to be on the table.”

                  Who, exactly, do the Democrats hope to have vote for them in the next election? For the moment, billionaires only get one vote.

                  Supposedly, the nation's corporate CEOs are all holding on to their huge profits because they are "uncertain" about the economy. But the real problem is that all these budget slashers are making average Americans uncertain, worried about whether or not they're going to have jobs and health care and social security. I think you can forgive people for feeling a little insecure when everyone in public life is calling for more sacrifice and "skin in the game" and constantly saying "everything's on the table." You'd be a fool not to hang on to every penny you have in a world that seems to be ever more dystopian.

                  In an ideal world we could have intelligent discussions about tweaking and tuning our convoluted and compromised health care delivery system.  In this climate, it is a fool's errand that risks enabling the destruction of what shreds of safety net we have.  If you want to throw the game, just keep on enabling the austerity folks.  They will not disappoint you.

                  •  sorry, but i disagree (0+ / 0-)

                    I'm of the view that sticking your head in the sand makes the problem worse. And since I'm talking about cutting costs, not bennies, i reject your summary judgment that this discussion enables the jerks like Warner. They don't need my blessing or approbation, they're gonna do what they're gonna do.

                    And by the way:

                    Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) named Sen. Patty Murray (D-WA), as committee co-chair, and appointed Sens. Max Baucus (D-MT) and John Kerry (D-MA) as members.

                    Warner isn't on the gang of 12. Just sayin' ;-)

                    "Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies." - Groucho Marx

                    by Greg Dworkin on Sun Aug 21, 2011 at 02:39:30 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  Grand Bargain & Jobs Jubilee (0+ / 0-)

                      These Clowns put this up in the WSJ.  They are the three you refer to.  Warner is a wannabee too outspoken and obvious to get the nod.  Read their tripe:

                      [...]
                      Make no mistake, this is an important moment for our country. Millions of Americans are still hurting, working overtime to pay the bills, struggling to find a job and a way forward for their families. Trillions of dollars in private capital are sitting on the sidelines because businesses are not yet confident enough in our economy or in their lawmakers to invest in the future. These families and businesses are demanding that this new committee work together to overcome the partisanship and brinksmanship of recent months and put our fiscal house in order.

                      The Standard & Poor's downgrade of America's credit rating was an unprecedented wake-up call for those who have for too long acted as if overheated rhetoric and dysfunction in Washington has no consequences for Main Street and working families. The shockwaves that roiled financial markets after the downgrade was a condemnation of Congress's inability to address the unsustainable trajectory of our current fiscal policies.

                      Sometimes you might not want what you ask for.  Especially from these three.

                      Dean Baker has more:

                      Senator John Kerry, along with the two other Democratic senators appointed to the "Super Committee", had a column in the Wall Street Journal yesterday on their approach to the committee's work. This piece is infuriating for its empty platitudes and the refusal to acknowledge economic reality. In just 700 words the piece promulgated 3 major economic myths while ignoring the fundamental truths about the economy and the budget.
                      •  different topic, no? (0+ / 0-)

                        now you're talking about deficit reduction not health reform (but on that I agree with Dean Baker).

                        "Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies." - Groucho Marx

                        by Greg Dworkin on Sun Aug 21, 2011 at 04:54:40 PM PDT

                        [ Parent ]

                        •  I'm Trying to understand your position. (0+ / 0-)

                          On the one hand you speak about fine tuning Medicare with careful cuts to tweak performance.  On the other, there is an austerity drive which has achieved  a super congress where the majority seems poised to make major cuts such as raising the retirement age and eligibility for medicare.  The first discussion is a polite affair where we speak of optimal surgery.  The second is very different.
                          My concern is when you say we must cut Medicare and trot out a case for that while speaking of "idiotic bumperstrips" put out by defenders of the program, you give comfort to those deficit hawks whose goals are very different.  I'm sorry if you think my concerns are off topic but I do feel they relate in respect to the consequences.
                          Would you please elaborate the relationship of your case to the super congress and what you expect to gain when the deck is so obviously tilted?  What do you expect will happen in this instance?

                          •  you claim I do (0+ / 0-)

                            and a completely unsubstantiated claim it is.

                            you give comfort to those deficit hawks whose goals are very different.  
                            Your saying it and repeating it doesn't make it in the least bit true.

                            My concern is the Medicare program for the purposes of this post, and the state of American health care in general, coupled with a concern about how to best protect and strengthen entitlements in an era of rising deficits. I want to see care get cheaper so more people can be covered. That's what underlies this post and my general outlook.

                            Is austerity the way to fix it? No. Most of the deficit is due to a combo of recession and Bush tax cuts. So, I'd like to see tax increases or revoking of the Bush tax cuts when they expire, and I'd like to see a jobs program and more stimulus.

                            Does Medicare and to a much lesser extent SS need fixing. Yes, they do. To say they don't is to deny the data. Medicare, in fact contributes to deficit in years to come and SS does not. (see last week's post for specifics).

                            So, my concern is that a dogmatic "don't touch it" will leave a program that needs a tune-up un-tuned.

                            I don't see how that gives comfort to people like Warner.

                            Now, we do have a gang of 12, we do have deficits and we do have a public that wants smaller government and less govt spending. I'm all for military cuts, and then let's see what's on the table. SS shouldn't be and Medicaid can be, as long as the proposals make sense in terms of strengthening the program.  And if they have to be tweaked with the wealthy paying a bit more, I'm okay with that in principle (let's see the details).

                            What's so hard to get about that?

                            "Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies." - Groucho Marx

                            by Greg Dworkin on Sun Aug 21, 2011 at 06:49:51 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                          •  and I should add the commant above to Armando (0+ / 0-)

                            timing is important because if the gang of 12 cannot agree to reasonable Medicare fixes, let it wait until after the election.

                            "Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies." - Groucho Marx

                            by Greg Dworkin on Sun Aug 21, 2011 at 06:54:14 PM PDT

                            [ Parent ]

                  •  now, I don't blame anyone for a lack of trust (0+ / 0-)

                    but as far as the data goes, it is what it is.

                    "Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it everywhere, diagnosing it incorrectly and applying the wrong remedies." - Groucho Marx

                    by Greg Dworkin on Sun Aug 21, 2011 at 02:40:26 PM PDT

                    [ Parent ]

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site